Register | Sign In


Understanding through Discussion


EvC Forum active members: 52 (9178 total)
3 online now:
Newest Member: Anig
Upcoming Birthdays: Theodoric
Post Volume: Total: 918,102 Year: 5,359/9,624 Month: 384/323 Week: 24/204 Day: 24/21 Hour: 0/0


Thread  Details

Email This Thread
Newer Topic | Older Topic
  
Author Topic:   Is science a religion?
crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 5 of 295 (290698)
02-26-2006 6:31 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by subbie
02-26-2006 5:44 PM


Is there any compelling reason to exclude the supernatural from the scope of scientific inquiry?
The "supernatural"? Sounds interesting. What is it?
It seems that the experts in Dover would dismiss even an investigation into whether such phenomena occur, and what their causes might be, as outside the realm of science, because it would not be a "naturalistic" explanation.
I'm not familiar with any scientist who has poo-pooed the idea of examining these things; James Randi, for instance, famously investigates such claims, and he's a major celebrity in the science world. What I hear scientists dismiss is the idea of accepting these things, and proposing mechanisms of their operation, in the face of a complete lack of evidence that these phenomena actually do occur.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by subbie, posted 02-26-2006 5:44 PM subbie has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 7 by subbie, posted 02-26-2006 6:42 PM crashfrog has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 14 of 295 (290738)
02-26-2006 9:14 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by subbie
02-26-2006 7:17 PM


Re: Is there any compelling reason to exclude the supernatural
Personally, when I think of the term "supernatural," I think of something operating outside the known "laws" of the universe as we understand them
Well, a considerable number of entirely ordinary and natural actions are outside of the known "laws" of the universe as we once understood them.
I don't see any reason to conflate "supernatural" with "unexplained", particularly since "unexplained" is a perfectly adequate and descriptive word. Indeed, observations of phenomena that defy explanation under our understanding of physical law merely indicates a flaw in our understanding, not that something is occuring that transcends the normal laws of space and time.
If the response is that the supernatural is not scientific because it's not testible, but anything testible is not supernatural, we would seem to have stumbled upon a tautology.
Which, indeed, might be a perfectly adequate reason to discard, a priori, the idea of the supernatural as something ameinable to science.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by subbie, posted 02-26-2006 7:17 PM subbie has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 25 of 295 (291280)
03-01-2006 3:43 PM
Reply to: Message 24 by subbie
03-01-2006 3:31 PM


Re: Defining "Supernatural"
Many people in science dismiss any allegations of such things out of hand as impossible.
What people? I'm familiar with many many people who dismiss allegations of those things out of hand as unproven, which is actually quite a reasonable response to allegations of something that has never before actually been observed.
But I've never heard any scientist dismiss these things out of hand as "impossible." Do you have citations?
I have also heard others say that those things, if they are genuine, are outside of the realm of scientific investigation.
Generally the people who are saying this are the people who desperately want to believe in the paranormal but need a reason to dismiss the failure of any of these abilities to withstand scientific inquiry.
The first conclusion, I think, is based on the combination of psi powers being illogical plus the fact that nobody has ever exhibited them under circumstances sufficient to rule out deception in one form or another.
Who says psi powers are illogical? Even if they were, couldn't that simply be a flaw in our logic, not a statement about what was possible in the universe?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 24 by subbie, posted 03-01-2006 3:31 PM subbie has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 26 by subbie, posted 03-01-2006 5:29 PM crashfrog has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 27 of 295 (291310)
03-01-2006 5:59 PM
Reply to: Message 26 by subbie
03-01-2006 5:29 PM


Re: Defining "Supernatural"
I don't have any citations, and don't have anyone in particular in mind.
You've leveled a fairly broad charge of violating the scientific method against a whole lot of people.
I mean, that's the thing. The attitude you're talking about isn't compatible with good science. I think what's more likely is that you're mistaking substantiated skepticism for an a priori closed mind.
It's not uncommon. People meet someone who's already investigated and answered the question for themselves, beforehand, and mistake them for someone who isn't even open to the possibility.
But that's a mistake. That person doesn't have a closed mind; they have an open mind that has closed the issue after appropriate investigation.
. Inherent in our concept of logic is cause and effect, with the cause preceeding the effect, at least outside the subatomic area.
Cause and effect is a convinient way of looking at the universe but I don't see any indication that the universe itself is required to operate that way.
And again, even if precience were substantiated, that would simply mean that our ideas about the universe were wrong, not that something impossible was happening.
This message has been edited by crashfrog, 03-01-2006 06:02 PM

This message is a reply to:
 Message 26 by subbie, posted 03-01-2006 5:29 PM subbie has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 28 by subbie, posted 03-01-2006 8:15 PM crashfrog has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 30 of 295 (291345)
03-01-2006 10:00 PM
Reply to: Message 28 by subbie
03-01-2006 8:15 PM


Re: Defining "Supernatural"
Well, there are a whole lot of people who deserve to have that charge leveled at them.
Well, who? That's what I'm trying to get at, here.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 28 by subbie, posted 03-01-2006 8:15 PM subbie has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 31 by subbie, posted 03-01-2006 10:01 PM crashfrog has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 35 of 295 (291478)
03-02-2006 11:55 AM
Reply to: Message 34 by robinrohan
03-02-2006 9:03 AM


Re: the definition of supernatural
Sound is supernatural? Language is supernatural? Light is supernatural?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 34 by robinrohan, posted 03-02-2006 9:03 AM robinrohan has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 36 by robinrohan, posted 03-02-2006 12:11 PM crashfrog has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 37 of 295 (291485)
03-02-2006 12:16 PM
Reply to: Message 36 by robinrohan
03-02-2006 12:11 PM


Re: the definition of supernatural
Such things are not incorporeal. If it's produced physically, it's not incorporeal.
You sure have some funny definitions of words. "Incorporeal" simply means "without body". It's not a reference to the origin of the thing.
Souls, for instance, would be incorporeal, but produced physically.
Light is the movement of photons, whatever those are. They go real fast.
So, you're defining corporeality as speed?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 36 by robinrohan, posted 03-02-2006 12:11 PM robinrohan has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 38 by robinrohan, posted 03-02-2006 12:57 PM crashfrog has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 90 of 295 (310781)
05-10-2006 3:19 PM
Reply to: Message 89 by brianforbes
05-10-2006 2:59 PM


Re: putting on my goggles
Only with great trauma (e.g. a pure Christian having sex with his girlfriend
Woah! That would be traumatic.
For her, I mean.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 89 by brianforbes, posted 05-10-2006 2:59 PM brianforbes has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 111 of 295 (310866)
05-10-2006 7:49 PM
Reply to: Message 109 by brianforbes
05-10-2006 6:54 PM


Re: I just know
I feel that it's perfectly logical to act on the feeling that I logically find holes in a thing.
When you say the word "logic", what do you mean?
Try not to reply with something like "oh, you're an idiot if you don't know what the word 'logic' means." I'm literally asking you what that word means to you, when you write it. Not for my own edification - I'm perfectly familiar with the accepted definition of "logic". The problem is that you don't seem to be, based on how you're using it here.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 109 by brianforbes, posted 05-10-2006 6:54 PM brianforbes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 113 by brianforbes, posted 05-10-2006 8:00 PM crashfrog has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 114 of 295 (310883)
05-10-2006 8:10 PM
Reply to: Message 113 by brianforbes
05-10-2006 8:00 PM


Re: I just know
I find that logic is a deduction that can come by setting down certain rules and running the data through them.
It's more accurate to say that logic is a process by which statements are derived from axioms by means of transformations that preserve truth-values. But, your definition isn't far off, I think.
It isn't, however, a definition that is consistent with your earlier post:
quote:
I feel that it's perfectly logical to act on the feeling that I logically find holes in a thing.
That doesn't sound like you ran any data through any sets of rules. It sounds like you came to the conclusion that felt best and decided to tell us it was true. In other words, you didn't start with the data and the rules and then derived a conclusion; you just skipped ahead to the conclusion.
And thanks, again, for insulting me.
I think you'll find that there's absolutely no place in that post where I insulted you. What I did was try to head off an insulting non-answer, which, given your posts so far, I had every expectation of recieving in lieu of an actual response.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 113 by brianforbes, posted 05-10-2006 8:00 PM brianforbes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 117 by brianforbes, posted 05-10-2006 9:17 PM crashfrog has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 124 of 295 (311017)
05-11-2006 11:24 AM
Reply to: Message 117 by brianforbes
05-10-2006 9:17 PM


Re: I just know
I ran them through rules, but they were rules that were not defined by you, so you seem not to have seen them as valid.
The rules of logic are very well-defined. They're not just things you make up. I mean, which rules did you use? Commutation? Disjunction? What? Show me your syllogism.
Another way to say it's logical is, "It makes sense."
No, that's false. There are a number of statements that are perfectly logical, but don't make any sense. And some that make sense, but can't be supported by logic. Most fallacies of rhetoric fall into this category; that's why they're so insidiously compelling. They make sense but they're not based in any logic.
In the same way you decided that my rules are illogical, I say that you can't define the rules I use to conclude what is true. I’ll define my own logical constraints, thank you kindly.
Mm, no, I don't think you will. You're perfectly free to try to defend whatever logical means you think you used to arrive at your conclusions, but you actually have to put those means on the table for us to look at. "Argument by hidden proof" is nothing more than assertion. And it's not particularly indicative of you being interested in a legitimate discussion.
I'm not opposed to Evolutionism being preached by it's pastors, but I am opposed to the idea that because Evolutionists disagree with my conclusion that it wasn't logical.
I don't see where anybody put forth that argument, so you're addressing a strawman.
Facts: 1. we have emotions 2. we exist, God exists
"God exists" is not a fact, but an assertion. Since that assertion is false your argument proceeds from a false premise, and is thus fallacious.
Given that logical construct, or seeing through my glasses, you can conclude, just as I have, that starting at the end is just as good as starting at the beginning.
Making things up is not an equivalent substitute for empirical knowledge about the world. The fact that you have feelings about something is not evidence that those feelings are true. In fact, we know that feelings are very often false.
You cannot conclude logically that it’s impossible that God exists (at least not given my filters and programming), and therefore you can’t logically conclude that God didn’t ever speak to people.
I don't have to, to conclude that God does not exist and does not speak. The very fact that you can't prove - that, indeed, it can't be proven - that he does exist and does speak is all the evidence I need to dismiss those conclusions.
Absence of evidence is evidence of absence.
It’s logical to conclude that you didn’t put your emotions aside in every aspect of your life, and I believe it’s a safe assumption to say that you used the same method as every man uses when deciding to believe something is true.
In other words: "I'm an idiot, so you must be, too." If your argument relies on you and I having equally stupid ways of looking at the universe, why would you expect me to find that compelling?
The thing is, of course, is that I didn't use the same methods as you to determine what was most likely true about the universe. And why would I? I'm a lot smarter than you. (This is what it looks like when I'm insulting you, btw.)
It would not be within the nature of a man to decide things any other way.
You mean, just because you can't? We're not all like you, BF. Just because you can't imagine a more objective means of inquiry doesn't mean that there isn't one.
You first hypothesize (or decide) and then find evidence to support it.
So, ignorant of both logic and the scientific method? Gotcha.
No, you don't "find evidence to support it." That's called "cherry-picking." What you do is, you propose a hypothesis and then devise a means by which it might be tested. Tested, not automatically confirmed. Often, hypotheses are rejected after experimentation or observation. In fact you learn as much when you reject a hypothesis, often, as when you confirm one.
I finds it insultin'.
Oh, indeed. That would have been a very insulting statement for you to say to me, if that's how you had chosen to reply. That's why I asked you not to reply that way, after all.
This message has been edited by crashfrog, 05-11-2006 11:25 AM

This message is a reply to:
 Message 117 by brianforbes, posted 05-10-2006 9:17 PM brianforbes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 126 by DrFrost, posted 05-11-2006 2:20 PM crashfrog has replied
 Message 131 by brianforbes, posted 05-11-2006 3:51 PM crashfrog has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 136 of 295 (311084)
05-11-2006 4:40 PM
Reply to: Message 126 by DrFrost
05-11-2006 2:20 PM


Re: I just know
That's all he's saying. Something logical "makes sense" or at least appears to be "valid reasoning."
But just because something makes sense, doesn't make it valid reasoning. Like him you're conflating concepts that mean two different things.
All it takes for something to "make sense" is for it to appeal to whatever biases and generalizations we've inculcated our minds with, over time. Common sense, as Bertrand Russel once said, is nothing more than a set of prejudices we've accumulated in our lifetimes. It has absolutely nothing to do with what is reasonable, or what is valid, or what is logical.
Words have meanings.
He's obviously not talking about formal mathematical methods.
Maybe you haven't been following the discussion? That's exactly what he claimed he was doing.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 126 by DrFrost, posted 05-11-2006 2:20 PM DrFrost has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 140 by brianforbes, posted 05-11-2006 5:42 PM crashfrog has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 137 of 295 (311088)
05-11-2006 4:47 PM
Reply to: Message 131 by brianforbes
05-11-2006 3:51 PM


Re: I just know
BF, all this misses the point. It's not about what you believe is true. It's about what is true.
If you know that the evidence shows that evolution is true, but you choose to believe that it is not, there's nothing I can do. You've chosen to approach the universe in a way that makes rational inquiry, logic, and reasoning based on evidence irrelevant. You've opted to live, literally, in a fantasy world.
That's fine. I pay 15 bucks a month to live in a fantasy world. Of course, I don't make the mistake of conflating that world with this one. You're free to believe that the way you've chosen is best, just as I'm free to disagree.
Just, don't mistake what you're doing with logic or science. Have respect for the people who do real work in those fields, who have devoted their lives to bringing us the benefits of those pursuits, and don't try and trade on their good name by applying labels like "logic" or "reason" to your delusions.
Deal?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 131 by brianforbes, posted 05-11-2006 3:51 PM brianforbes has not replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 139 of 295 (311108)
05-11-2006 5:36 PM
Reply to: Message 138 by brianforbes
05-11-2006 5:29 PM


Re: General Questions
Why do so many Evolutionists I know find nature to be awe inspiring? Isn't that religious?
Asthetic, maybe; maybe spiritual. Religious?
Religion is defined, roughly, as a set of rituals, practices, and morals derived from belief in supernatural entities. That doesn't seem to describe an appreciation for nature's complexity.
Isn't it convenient that Evolutionists don't move beond the scope of the tangible? Doesn't that make it so much easier not to have to answer the non-tangible questions?
This doesn't make any sense. Isn't not having answers pretty easy in the first place? Why would we need to do anything to make it easier?
If man was around 20,000 years, how'd he get so smart so fast?
I think your figures are off.
We know of ruins and text from about 5,000 years ago. Why is there little or nothing (that shows he's smarter than his nearest ancestor) from the men up to 15,000 years before that?
What makes you think we have "little or nothing"?
It's apparent to me that man was quite as smart 5,000 years ago as he is today.
Ah, right. That, of course, explains all of the 5000-year-old TV's, computers, rocket ships, and robots we're all up to our elbows in.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 138 by brianforbes, posted 05-11-2006 5:29 PM brianforbes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 142 by brianforbes, posted 05-11-2006 5:59 PM crashfrog has replied

crashfrog
Member (Idle past 1575 days)
Posts: 19762
From: Silver Spring, MD
Joined: 03-20-2003


Message 141 of 295 (311122)
05-11-2006 5:57 PM
Reply to: Message 140 by brianforbes
05-11-2006 5:42 PM


Re: I just know
I'm claiming that there is no such thing as logic except that it's put through the filter of man's biases.
But there is such a thing as logic. You can be trained to do it in ways where bias simply doesn't enter into it. That's why logic is typically done in syllogisms, for instance - in symbol form, all you see are the rules. There's no way for your bias to enter into it, because there's no place for it to "grab on."
Bias can be tricky, but the greatest developments of science in the past century have been the techniques that allow us to examine the natural world but leave our biases largely at the door. The scientific method itself is the prime example of how personal bias is made as irrelevant as possible in the pursuit of knowledge.
To use the software analogy, we have different hardware, you see.
Oh? I'm a male member of Homo sapiens. How about you?
I'm sure, given the time, I could get you to see where I got my answers, whether you accept them or not.
No, I understand perfectly how you get your answers. I've told you my view of how you get your answers, and you agreed. The way that you get your answers is not a mystery, here.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 140 by brianforbes, posted 05-11-2006 5:42 PM brianforbes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 144 by brianforbes, posted 05-11-2006 6:08 PM crashfrog has replied

Newer Topic | Older Topic
Jump to:


Copyright 2001-2023 by EvC Forum, All Rights Reserved

™ Version 4.2
Innovative software from Qwixotic © 2024