Register | Sign In


Understanding through Discussion


EvC Forum active members: 57 (9175 total)
2 online now:
Newest Member: sirs
Post Volume: Total: 917,649 Year: 4,906/9,624 Month: 254/427 Week: 0/64 Day: 0/8 Hour: 0/0


Thread  Details

Email This Thread
Newer Topic | Older Topic
  
Author Topic:   The Atheist Prayer Argument Is A Dull Generalisation Predicated On INEXPERIENCE
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17838
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.7


Message 16 of 55 (912174)
08-19-2023 4:07 AM
Reply to: Message 15 by Phat
08-19-2023 3:54 AM


Re: First You Believe and Then You Are Open To Persuasion
I am reminded of Cedre’s “modern day miracle man” A Modern Day Miracle Man - Establishes the Supernatural Realm. Gullibility is not a virtue.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by Phat, posted 08-19-2023 3:54 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9533
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.3


(1)
Message 17 of 55 (912175)
08-19-2023 6:57 AM
Reply to: Message 15 by Phat
08-19-2023 3:54 AM


Re: First You Believe and Then You Are Open To Persuasion
Phat writes:
You only accept evidence. We accept eyewitness information from ourselves and others.
Eye witness evidence is evidence - it's poor evidence but it's a start. The problem with eye-witnesses miracles is that they're never miracles.
Again, a critical thinker at a church event in which unexplained things happen is more likely to attempt to falsify their experience.
If it can be falsified it's not a miracle is it?
Let me ask you this: In your early days of bells and smells, did you feel safe with the people you were around?
I've no idea why you think that's important, I never even thought about it. But looking back from here, I was actually very, very unsafe. All those weird celibate guys in funny clothes playing with little boys.
I would argue that your rational evidence based club makes your mental sanity more comfortable.
For sure, I'm not at all comfortable surrounded by grown-ups bowing, keeling and uttering drivel to make-belief sky-daddies.
During the few times when I and others purportedly witnessed a supernatural unexplained event, we were dumbstruck. Critics could argue that we were fooled by conmen who at best were magicians trained in illusion, but the main difference between myself and a critical thinker is that they(you) will attempt to falsify your perceptions whereas I faced the magic to see if it was in any way real. While I would cautiously agree that I could be wrong, you would never admit that you could be wrong.
Uh? It's the reverse isn't it? Show me a miracles and I'll change my mind. Nothing is going to change your mind is it?
You may never get the evidence that you require.
Of course I won't - if it existed we'd all be Christians.

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London. Olen Suomi Soy Barcelona. I am Ukraine.

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by Phat, posted 08-19-2023 3:54 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
Theodoric
Member
Posts: 9283
From: Northwest, WI, USA
Joined: 08-15-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 18 of 55 (912177)
08-19-2023 8:46 AM
Reply to: Message 15 by Phat
08-19-2023 3:54 AM


Re: First You Believe and Then You Are Open To Persuasion
Do.you ever read what you write before you post?

What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence. -Christopher Hitchens

Facts don't lie or have an agenda. Facts are just facts

"God did it" is not an argument. It is an excuse for intellectual laziness.

If your viewpoint has merits and facts to back it up why would you have to lie?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by Phat, posted 08-19-2023 3:54 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 22621
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.3


Message 19 of 55 (912178)
08-19-2023 9:22 AM
Reply to: Message 2 by mike the wiz
08-18-2023 3:36 PM


mike the wiz writes:
In the same way logically speaking if one true miracle occurs on earth beyond question, this would negate the absence of forty two million billion zillion miracles.
Said another way, we accept that for which there is evidence. Here's a list of Catholic miracles. I think you'll find them believable, and some employ scientific tests, but replication is a key part of science. Look at what happened very recently to the scientist who claimed to have discovered room temperature fusion. No research group was able to replicate his findings, instead discovering other explanations for his observations. He was forced to withdraw his paper.
For validation of miracles you need an interrupted chain of evidence and repeated and replicated analyses. Lacking that the miracles are articles of faith, not science.
If prayers are not answered generally, this is NOT an impressive argument that God does not exist.
If the reality is that prayers are not answered generally, then there can't be many answered prayers to offer as evidence. But if someone wants to believe their prayers have been answered what's wrong with that? Their belief isn't forcing anyone else to believe, although it is a bit tedious listening to a proselytizer testifying to God's presence in their life and how He has answered their prayers.
Even Darwin knew and employed this logical thinking when he said that if there were to be just one anatomy that could not be explained by evolution his theory could be counted as false.
If the definition of a miracle is a scientifically inexplicable event then there are a huge number of miracles out there. One thing currently inexplicable by science that has received recent attention is the magnetic moment of the muon. Why does measurement differ with theory? We don't know. We may never know (though some additional data becomes available in September that may help). Is this scientifically inexplicable contradiction a miracle? I think most would answer that it is not. They would just see it as science trying to better understand the universe.
So if water in a vessel turns to blood, is that a miracle? Or is it just one more thing science can't explain? (We'll leave aside the question of the quality and quantity of any scientific analysis performed.)
So what atheists may believe is a good reason to dismiss God, may for others just lead them to another question, that question being; then why the rarity?
How do you tell the difference between a miracle and something science can't explain yet? And since miracles happen in religious contexts rather than laboratories, scientific analysis happens later, not during. One can imagine a conversation like this: "I've noticed that some of the parishioners are commenting that the condensation on the outside of the vessel looks like blood. Let us play a little joke. After everyone has gone to sleep you sneak down to the mortuary and take the blood saved from someone recently embalmed, then replace the water in the vessel with the blood."
Is this what happened in the case of The Eucharistic Miracles of Buenos Aires, Argentina, 1992-1994-1996? Who can say? If Catholics want to believe it is a miracle then let them. Science itself has no evidence that water ever turns spontaneously to blood.
It makes consistent sense that if the bible is true and we do have a sinful nature, that you don't get the gift without the giver.
Any logic in this escapes me.
God is not a friend with benefits, or a Santa claus you can take gifts from then on boxing day say, "now phuck off, we just want the gifts".
You could have stopped at, "God is not."
No being likes to be used. Can you name one intelligent person that wants to be treated with disrespect and have people be mean to them?
Look at J.K.Rowling. They want her creation but they want to divorce her from it. "give us the Harry Potter, but cut J.K out of Harry Potter!"
I have no idea what you're on about here, but I don't pay much attention to the goings on in the Potter/Rowling world.
--Percy

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2 by mike the wiz, posted 08-18-2023 3:36 PM mike the wiz has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 21 by Phat, posted 08-23-2023 6:58 AM Percy has replied
 Message 30 by mike the wiz, posted 08-25-2023 6:27 AM Percy has replied

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 22621
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.3


Message 20 of 55 (912179)
08-19-2023 9:26 AM
Reply to: Message 15 by Phat
08-19-2023 3:54 AM


Re: First You Believe and Then You Are Open To Persuasion
Phat writes:
You may never get the evidence that you require.
This is often true in science. But believers in miracles also never get the evidence they require. They just believe anyway. It's called faith.
--Percy

This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by Phat, posted 08-19-2023 3:54 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 18389
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003


Message 21 of 55 (912270)
08-23-2023 6:58 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by Percy
08-19-2023 9:22 AM


Is Evidence All That You "Believe" In?
Percy writes:
Said another way, we accept that for which there is evidence. Here's a list of Catholic miracles. I think you'll find them believable, and some employ scientific tests, but replication is a key part of science. Look at what happened very recently to the scientist who claimed to have discovered room temperature fusion. No research group was able to replicate his findings, instead discovering other explanations for his observations. He was forced to withdraw his paper.
So the next time that someone swears on their Bible that God healed them or God told them something that was unexplainable to them, you quite correctly label it as an article of faith and not science, correct?
Percy writes:
For validation of miracles you need an interrupted chain of evidence and repeated and replicated analyses. Lacking that the miracles are articles of faith, not science.
For sure. I understand the definition of terms quite well. In fact, the whole reason that I never ascribed to what is loosely known as Biblical Creationism was not so much that it was a quiet article of faith by some. What turned me off was all of these people insisting that it could be scientific.
Ask me how old the earth is. I would say that I don't know and I dont care. If a staunch Biblical Literalist insists that it is a young earth (under 10,000 years) I would chalk his/her reply up to faith...not science.
Ask me if I believe that Jesus once existed and I would say with conviction that I believe that He was, is, and always will be. I would argue that there is no "once" about it. ​I can and will argue to defend my faith, but I try not to conflate it with science by definition.
One other thing that I DO believe in is that there are many who, under the name of science, evidence, and critical thinking have an agenda to discredit the Bible in the way that Christians throughout History have believed it to be.
You say that replication is a key part of science. This may be so, but IF God exists, He likely won't replicate anything just because a team of scientists require it in order to complete their experiment. Hypothetically thinking, your question could be "Why Not"?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 19 by Percy, posted 08-19-2023 9:22 AM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 22 by Tangle, posted 08-23-2023 7:26 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied
 Message 23 by Percy, posted 08-23-2023 8:10 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied
 Message 26 by Tusko, posted 08-24-2023 4:45 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9533
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.3


Message 22 of 55 (912273)
08-23-2023 7:26 AM
Reply to: Message 21 by Phat
08-23-2023 6:58 AM


Re: Is Evidence All That You "Believe" In?
Phat writes:
So the next time that someone swears on their Bible that God healed them or God told them something that was unexplainable to them, you quite correctly label it as an article of faith and not science, correct?
Without any other evidence, of course.
I've been listening all week to Muslins saying that they've been saved from dying on a sinking boat by their god. Failing to mention the others on the boat that god presumably killed. What nonsense.
​I can and will argue to defend my faith, but I try not to conflate it with science by definition.
Ah but that's only because you can't isn't it? If you could use science to evidence your faith with miracles and answered prayers you would.
One other thing that I DO believe in is that there are many who, under the name of science, evidence, and critical thinking have an agenda to discredit the Bible in the way that Christians throughout History have believed it to be.
Yeh, it's impudent to ask for historical evidence to support believer's claim about their book. Science and history has a duty to establish what is real and what isn't - it's religion's centuries old persecution complex that calls it an 'agenda'.
You say that replication is a key part of science. This may be so, but IF God exists, He likely won't replicate anything just because a team of scientists require it in order to complete their experiment.
Then there's no reason to think that your claims are true.
Hypothetically thinking, your question could be "Why Not"?
Hypothetically thinking, your question could be "Why Not Fairies at the bottom of my garden"?

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London. Olen Suomi Soy Barcelona. I am Ukraine.

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 21 by Phat, posted 08-23-2023 6:58 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 24 by Theodoric, posted 08-23-2023 9:51 AM Tangle has not replied

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 22621
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.3


(1)
Message 23 of 55 (912275)
08-23-2023 8:10 AM
Reply to: Message 21 by Phat
08-23-2023 6:58 AM


Re: Is Evidence All That You "Believe" In?
Phat writes:
One other thing that I DO believe in is that there are many who, under the name of science, evidence, and critical thinking have an agenda to discredit the Bible in the way that Christians throughout History have believed it to be.
You're just another crazy Christian paranoid. There is no anti-Christian agenda within science. Science only cares about Christianity when Christians begin marching into school classrooms and filling future scientists heads with nonsense.
IF God exists, He likely won't replicate anything just because a team of scientists require it in order to complete their experiment.
How nice for you that you know the mind of God.
--Percy

This message is a reply to:
 Message 21 by Phat, posted 08-23-2023 6:58 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
Theodoric
Member
Posts: 9283
From: Northwest, WI, USA
Joined: 08-15-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 24 of 55 (912276)
08-23-2023 9:51 AM
Reply to: Message 22 by Tangle
08-23-2023 7:26 AM


Re: Is Evidence All That You "Believe" In?
My working theory is Leprechauns.

What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence. -Christopher Hitchens

Facts don't lie or have an agenda. Facts are just facts

"God did it" is not an argument. It is an excuse for intellectual laziness.

If your viewpoint has merits and facts to back it up why would you have to lie?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 22 by Tangle, posted 08-23-2023 7:26 AM Tangle has not replied

  
Tusko
Member (Idle past 187 days)
Posts: 615
From: London, UK
Joined: 10-01-2004


Message 25 of 55 (912290)
08-24-2023 4:34 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by mike the wiz
08-18-2023 3:17 PM


The placebo effect is pretty well documented, and it is fascinating. Sugar pills can produce measurable benefits. I'd suggest that it's power may go some way to explaining the perceived efficacy of prayer.
There's also the matter of regression to the mean. I'd suggest looking at the Daniel Kahneman quote here - Regression toward the mean - Wikipedia - and seeing if you can discern how I think his thoughts are applicable to prayer.
There are also a number of other powerful psychological biases which I would suggest are in play: - confirmation, selection and survivorship bias, which mean that people tend to notice instances of "successful" prayer, and discount or otherwise downplay unsuccessful prayer attempts. [edit: in the case of survivorship bias, they aren't even *there* to document the failure of their prayers to save them]
There's also the matter that even if prayer is effective (and not for reasons of psychology or statistics, but some mysterious force, perhaps of a spiritual or supernatural kind) - then it isn't at all clear what fountainhead we have to thank for these helpful intercessions. I'd be surprised if the power of prayer wasn't considered to be similarly efficacious for all faith groups. Assuming that's true, this would suggest that it isn't the specific dogma but something to do with the general emanation of psychic wobbles. But just to be clear, I don't think there's any particular evidence to suggest psychic wobbles have any part to play - I think psychology and statistics probably cover most bases.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by mike the wiz, posted 08-18-2023 3:17 PM mike the wiz has not replied

  
Tusko
Member (Idle past 187 days)
Posts: 615
From: London, UK
Joined: 10-01-2004


Message 26 of 55 (912291)
08-24-2023 4:45 AM
Reply to: Message 21 by Phat
08-23-2023 6:58 AM


Re: Is Evidence All That You "Believe" In?
IF God exists, He likely won't replicate anything just because a team of scientists require it in order to complete their experiment.
You have to bear in mind that the whole scientific project has been trundling on as long as it has precisely because of the replicability of experimental results. There would be no point in carrying out experimental science or making observations if different things happened arbitrarily. Happily for science, this kind of inexplicable behaviour hasn't been observed. This would seem to act as some kind of evidence against the capricious god that you posit in your quote.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 21 by Phat, posted 08-23-2023 6:58 AM Phat has seen this message but not replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9533
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.3


Message 27 of 55 (912292)
08-24-2023 4:59 AM


Looks like Micky's post was another fire and forget.
This is excellent troll work.

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London. Olen Suomi Soy Barcelona. I am Ukraine.

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


Replies to this message:
 Message 28 by mike the wiz, posted 08-25-2023 6:06 AM Tangle has replied

  
mike the wiz
Member
Posts: 4755
From: u.k
Joined: 05-24-2003


Message 28 of 55 (912310)
08-25-2023 6:06 AM
Reply to: Message 27 by Tangle
08-24-2023 4:59 AM


Tangle writes:
Looks like Micky's post was another fire and forget.

This is excellent troll work.
Sorry if I give that impression a few things are at play.
1. I don't like confrontation. As I said recently, I am more of a writer than a fighter. It just seems a forum like this was geared more towards fighting.
2. I try to be an interlocutor as best I can, rather than taking the role of an adversary. You may have misunderstood my intentions because they may appear troll-like.
3. I write in the hopes there are types of people, readers and lurkers, that will be more open-minded, rather than the old crowd that have their minds firmly made up.
4. I have OCD. The less of this stuff I do, the less my brain will torture me.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 27 by Tangle, posted 08-24-2023 4:59 AM Tangle has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 29 by Tangle, posted 08-25-2023 6:19 AM mike the wiz has replied
 Message 37 by Percy, posted 08-25-2023 7:50 AM mike the wiz has replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9533
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.3


(2)
Message 29 of 55 (912311)
08-25-2023 6:19 AM
Reply to: Message 28 by mike the wiz
08-25-2023 6:06 AM


=MtW]Sorry if I give that impression a few things are at play.

1. I don't like confrontation. As I said recently, I am more of a writer than a fighter. It just seems a forum like this was geared more towards fighting.

2. I try to be an interlocutor as best I can, rather than taking the role of an adversary. You may have misunderstood my intentions because they may appear troll-like.

3. I write in the hopes there are types of people, readers and lurkers, that will be more open-minded, rather than the old crowd that have their minds firmly made up.

4. I have OCD. The less of this stuff I do, the less my brain will torture me.
You have history here Mick, we know you. 4,726 posts here and another 5,937 at your very own site so don't give us that crap.
If you open a thread here you know that you're supposed to discus and defend your position not shoot and drive on.
This is a discussion and debate site, if you just want to preach, find a pulpit or start a blog.

Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London. Olen Suomi Soy Barcelona. I am Ukraine.

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 28 by mike the wiz, posted 08-25-2023 6:06 AM mike the wiz has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 31 by mike the wiz, posted 08-25-2023 6:36 AM Tangle has not replied
 Message 45 by nwr, posted 08-25-2023 1:31 PM Tangle has replied

  
mike the wiz
Member
Posts: 4755
From: u.k
Joined: 05-24-2003


Message 30 of 55 (912312)
08-25-2023 6:27 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by Percy
08-19-2023 9:22 AM


Percy writes:
For validation of miracles you need an interrupted chain of evidence and repeated and replicated analyses. Lacking that the miracles are articles of faith, not science.
That there is no general science to validate miracles pretty much doesn't touch anything that I said.
I did not accept by neurotic agreement with you that I must validate miracles. I was arguing that the atheists I have heard and come across have argued from their own ignorance of them, their own inexperience.
You are trying to get me to score through a goal hoop which is solid and can't be scored through.
Percy writes:
If the reality is that prayers are not answered generally, then there can't be many answered prayers to offer as evidence. But if someone wants to believe their prayers have been answered what's wrong with that? Their belief isn't forcing anyone else to believe, although it is a bit tedious listening to a proselytizer testifying to God's presence in their life and how He has answered their prayers.
It follows there can't be many answered prayers as evidence but like you said in your verbose responses of which I cannot address all, it depends who you are praying too.
In the NT it says the natural man cannot understand spiritual things. It makes it pretty clear that God only answers those who genuinely believe and seek in truth.
Hebrews 11 is it? Where it says, "He who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those that seek Him."
It would seem unlikely that God would ever put Himself forward as a guinea pig for arrogant people like you demanding scientific evidence. You are merely a human being, nothing more.
Percy writes:
How do you tell the difference between a miracle and something science can't explain yet?
You really seem to be trying hard to get me to make a case for miracles.
But this sounds like an appeal-to-the-future fallacy.
In a way you can always answer by making this appeal. It can seem the only way you can get some things for example is by design, and a designer ticks all the boxes but you could just say, "how do you know it's something science can't yet explain?"
The point is at what stage does "coincidental beyond what chance would allow" become silly.
Just as a hypothetical. If God says, "go to this place" which is a certain location. Then He says, "go to this shop", where beforehand you are looking for answers for why your goods were stolen from your property and were angry at God, if you then enter the shop and your stolen things are for sale, was it just something science has no answer for yet?
In that sense, you can never have an answered prayer. You would be a sort of stubborn idiot PRETENDING science always took precedent.
(taken from the testimony of Andrew Owen, iirc)
I have written a few more from memory, you can read them here;Bot Verification
(there may be more in that thread that might satisfy some of your responses, I don't know.)
Remember my emphasis is upon atheists I have genuinely heard argue the things I complained about in the opening message.
Even on an atheist-talk day the speaker made the argument that God doesn't answer prayer, he used the analogy of an email spam box with too many emails to handle for one person. It is a well known argument, but the assumptions of this popular argument do the very thing you mentioned is a problem; they amalgamate many mutually exclusive religious faiths.
You're a smart boy, figure it out.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 19 by Percy, posted 08-19-2023 9:22 AM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 49 by Percy, posted 08-25-2023 4:22 PM mike the wiz has not replied

  
Newer Topic | Older Topic
Jump to:


Copyright 2001-2023 by EvC Forum, All Rights Reserved

™ Version 4.2
Innovative software from Qwixotic © 2024