Debunking Religion?

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Originally posted by bettysfetish
See if this is analogious; You want to know how many phone books one bullet will penitrate. You fire at one book(all measurments and volicities recorded) and it passes thru. Thru two books as well. Then three. If the "exiting" volocity of each firing compaired to one another a "decelleration rate" can be compiled, "BUT", your out of books. I think it would be simple to "Extrapolate" the results to detirmine how many more books we need, therefore we should be able to get results without completing the test "just because we can't forsee a roadblock to our experiment." Is "that" too far off the wall?
this isn't quite going to make sense at first (perhaps):

i can see how extrapolation to a few more books is less risky than extrapolation to a few billion books.

in other words, extrapolating well beyond available data is often risky. sometimes extrapolating even slightly beyond available data is risky. either way, extrapolation isn't absolute truth for sure.

cheers,
phoenix
 
  • #77
Betty's back.
Well Phoenix, I'm not sure where to go with that.
A large percent, it seems, of the answers I seek can only be answered through theory and practice.
Perhaps I'll start a thread on "Creational Theory" as "most" of my questions lean towards scientific explanations up to the point of "Leaving False Vacume." This was started as "debunking religion" and I don't see much "scientificly" that relates to the bible untill the "Big Bang"(i hate that term) which Most would assume to be "The Moment Of Creation."
The most exciting point during creation might have been the few milliseconds leading up to false vacume.
I looked through my books seeking a quote that might justifie best some good reasons why theory, conjecture, and exprapolation of exsisting knowledge is necessary for science to proceed. However I could not find a thing that concurred "it's not important."
I'll look for you as well as others on a new thread. I'll use the caption above. I'll drift back here, mabey, if the creational theory thread makes it to the "Bang."
 
  • #78
Nereid
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Originally posted by phoenixthoth
i understand what you're getting at. just to start off, approximately how many astrological phenomena have been observed in the 10 to 15 billion ly range?
None. But if you meant 'astronomical' phenomena, please take a look at the thread I'm going to start in General Astronomy.
 
  • #79
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oops! yeah, i meant astronomical. i wonder what that freudian slip means...
 
  • #80
Nereid
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phoenixthoth: approximately how many astronomical phenomena have been observed in the 10 to 15 billion ly range?
A:
1) quasars with z > ~3
2) galaxies with z > ~3
3) the CMB (cosmic microwave background).

[edit: the relationship between z and distance is somewhat model dependent. Differences of ~10% (OOM).]

From the first year's WMAP results, the age of the universe is inferred to be 13.8 billion years. Here's a selection of papers:
http://map.gsfc.nasa.gov/m_mm/pub_papers/firstyear.html [Broken]

Of course, the quasar we see at z = 6 (not the most distant seen) is 'no longer' ~13 billion ly out; the universe has expanded some since the light from it that we now see started its journey.
 
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  • #81
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what's z?
 
  • #82
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Redshift. z=[del][lamb]/[lamb] , where [del][lamb]=[lamb]'-[lamb] is the change in wavelength (due to cosmological expansion) of a light ray from a distant source, [lamb] is its emitted wavelength, and [lamb]' is its detected wavelength. In linear (Doppler) approximation, z=v/c, where v is the recessional velocity of the source and c the speed of light.
 
  • #83
FZ+
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i completely reject this notion of truth entirely.
I don't care.
i can very well live with it and reject it.
I don't give a damn.
it matters if i disagree with your definitions.
No it does not.

Consider what I am saying to be a foreign language. The list of definitions I gave you is a dictionary to that language. You may disagree that "je" means I, or "aimer" means to like, but can you for a moment just look past that and read what I posted for what I meant?

I don't care what you think the definitions are. At this moment, I am precisely focused on one thing - getting it across to you the real meaning of what I have posted. You have, by rejecting my definitions effectively read out a French sentence as though it was written in British. I cannot simply be bother arguing any more which is the better language, or whatever.

What matters is that you are treating what I wrote as saying something it is not, because you have failed to match up the correct vocabulary to the argument.

Don't you see what you are doing is generating a strawman fallacy? I agree almost precisely with the content of your response to my "absolute proof" thing, but if I took it at face value and applied my sense of what rational means, it is complete and unadulterated BS. You are disagreeing with a target that does not exist.

Look, it would be easier if you simply posted what you think I mean, and then I'll point out the fallacies.
 
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  • #84
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Consider what I am saying to be a foreign language. The list of definitions I gave you is a dictionary to that language. You may disagree that "je" means I, or "aimer" means to like, but can you for a moment just look past that and read what I posted for what I meant?
using your definitions, what you have written is internally consistent. likewise, by a mathematican's definition of truth, it is false that aleph0 = aleph1. this is also false by the scientific definition of truth because nothing in reality so far is the same as something greater than itself. (perhaps when all fields decide that something is false, that provides evidence that it is absolutely false...) you said that intangible claims are inherintly indeterminate. i still say that "aleph0 = aleph1" is a determinate intangible claim and i've even shown this to be the case using the scientific definition of truth. i would agree that SOME intangible claims are indeterminate, but not all. this leads one to question whether or not the "intangible" God existence claim is as indeterminate as you think it is, for no longer are all intangible claims indeterminate.

I don't care what you think the definitions are. At this moment, I am precisely focused on one thing - getting it across to you the real meaning of what I have posted. You have, by rejecting my definitions effectively read out a French sentence as though it was written in British. I cannot simply be bother arguing any more which is the better language, or whatever.

What matters is that you are treating what I wrote as saying something it is not, because you have failed to match up the correct vocabulary to the argument.
i don't think the scientific definition of truth is something it is not. i'm saying that is not the definition of truth. i think it does matter which is the better language. and the scientific definition of truth is clearly inferior; i indicated this by my african american claim which would be "true" by the scientific definition of truth.

how am i treating what you are writing as something it is not?

Don't you see what you are doing is generating a strawman fallacy? I agree almost precisely with the content of your response to my "absolute proof" thing, but if I took it at face value and applied my sense of what rational means, it is complete and unadulterated BS. You are disagreeing with a target that does not exist.

Look, it would be easier if you simply posted what you think I mean, and then I'll point out the fallacies.
in a strawman fallacy, the argument in question is changed to a weaker version of that argument; then the weaker version is attacked. when did i do this? in other words, when did i change your argument into a weaker version of that argument?

here's what i think you mean. nothing can be proven absolutely. that includes scientific claims, mathematical claims, and religious claims. some intangible claims are determinate and some are not. for example of the former, consider the warpage of space-time. i contend that while the effects of space-time warpage are tangible, the space-time warpage itself is not tangible. for an example of the latter, consider the God question. you consider that an intangible claim even though one of the sub-claims is that God had a tangible effect on the universe in that God created the universe. to me,
space-time warpage : effects on the universe :: God : effects on the universe. in other words, space-time warpage and God are equally tangible/intangible yet, to you, the space-time warpage claim is determinate while the God claim is not. i agree that the latter may not be determined by the scientific method but that doesn't neccessarily imply it cannot be determined period. the opening few lines of this paragraph put the three fields on equal footing, yet you consider discussion in the third field (and i'm not quoting) a waste of time. this seems as unfortunate as someone working in the third field calling the discussion of science a waste of time. i'm not arguing the utility of science but you seem to argue the utility of religion.

nash said something to this effect. rationality places limitations on one's feeling of connection to the cosmos. then i said that once we remove those limitations, the hunch is that we will be able to know the truth of certain things absolutely though proving it to someone else using axiomatic schemes and limiting definitions is probably impossible. your response was something to the effect of that being the biggest mistake of mankind. my reply intended to imply that creativity and genius are not rational processes; those are two tools in which the aforemention limitations stemming from rationality are removed. then i asked how use of those two non-rational tools would be a mistake at all, much less the biggest mistake of mankind. you never answered this. the best possible counter argument i can think of you proposing stems from the computational theory of mind which states that all mental functions are computational in nature, albeit their rationale is not understood. but i haven't gotten to the point in "how the mind works," by a so called leading computational mind theorist, where creativity and genius are discussed. i'm quite interested to see what his evidence is that creativity and genius are rational/computational in nature. this claim i am highly skeptical of.

cheers,
phoenix
 
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  • #85
FZ+
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i still say that "aleph0 = aleph1" is a determinate intangible claim and i've even shown this to be the case using the scientific definition of truth.
Hence, you are talking the platonic idea of maths. In which case, yes, maths in science. It can be tested that 1+1 =2, and it can be tested by observation that the law of maths that alephfoo refers to is correct.

God is only determinate if it is tangible - if it is testable in the same way you would test alephfoo. This is a matter by definition. I did not say whether or not God had to be tangible.

i'm saying that is not the definition of truth.
And I am saying that is, in the posts I have written. You have instead surplanted your definition of truth into what I have written, I created absurd results. Of course you will.

When I am talking about truth here, that is all I mean. It may not correspond to what you consider as truth, but that is what I mean. Geddit?

how am i treating what you are writing as something it is not?
Let us take an example.

"i'm just saying "11 dimensions" is intangible. by what FZ+ said earlier, this makes it unscientific and indeterminate."
This is precisely what I did not say. I used a definition of intangible which covered the indirect effects, and that is all I mean here. However, in these arguments, you present the misleading picture that I consider something determinate if it is physically existent, and then proceeded to argue over several posts with me with the idea that you know my opinion better than I do.

"some intangible claims are determinate and some are not. for example of the former, consider the warpage of space-time. i contend that while the effects of space-time warpage are tangible, the space-time warpage itself is not tangible."
Here you have blurred my contention with my argument.

Let's try and simplify this part of the argument once and for all. I have chosen the definition of tangible/intangible to differentiate against something that gives observable effects and predictions, and something that by definition cannot. For example, the claim that God buried a gold casket filled with antimatter under London Station is clearly gibberish, but it is tangible. Meanwhile, the contention that an absolutely undetectable substance exists in the universe is intangible, because as a matter of nature it can never be observed. The idea that an inverse square relation exists for gravity is tangible, since we can measure the strength of the magnetic field, and pink fairies are also tangible. The claim that God created the universe to look exactly like it would if God did not exist is intangible. The claim that God left some sort of signature to show that God did create the universe is tangible.

In short, I am sequestering the world tangible to refer to not just entities but ideas. I am not using the word to distinguish between abstract and concrete, as you show that you think I am.

I am not saying anything about religion. I am not even attacking religion. Look at the title of the thread: "Debunking Religion". I am more or less targetting atheists here, questioning if Religion can continue to be attacked, as per the scientific method - since by the scientific method, the only way to determine truth is by attacking something. The point about the immunity of religion is that if no "tangible claims" are made, then no real "tangible attacks" can be made either. In which case, the threads boil down to either checking for consistency, or just emotional garbage on both sides.

then i said that once we remove those limitations, the hunch is that we will be able to know the truth of certain things absolutely though proving it to someone else using axiomatic schemes and limiting definitions is probably impossible. your response was something to the effect of that being the biggest mistake of mankind.
Now understand the context of that. The context is in point number one - we can never know everything. By Godel's theorem, nothing we can know can possibly be complete, and things that we must definitely think are true have often turned out not to be. By inference, I am saying that it is impossible to know anything as absolutely true, because the human mind is absolutely flawed. All we will end up would be an illusion of absolute truth, and a stagnating wall to progress. The process of knowledge relies on us asking questions, and someone taking anything as absolutely true is a fool.

rationality places limitations on one's feeling of connection to the cosmos.
What I then realised was that (presumeably) you were considering my conception of rationality at all. Rather, your example (irrational numbers) showed that you were in fact talking about things like common sense, which I consider as the delusion of absolute truth. What I considered as rational was to see things - old things, new things, old ideas, new ideas with skepticism, and continuously test them. That is often the stimulus for genius, and what differentiates genius from plain madness.

In effect, my definition of rational was the opposite of your definition of rational. The fanatic (who does not look without, but fools himself in self-righteousness) is the most irrational by my book, and the most rational in yours. Do you see?
 
  • #86
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Hence, you are talking the platonic idea of maths. In which case, yes, maths in science. It can be tested that 1+1 =2, and it can be tested by observation that the law of maths that alephfoo refers to is correct.
is "aleph0 = aleph1" a tangible or intangible claim?
just to be crystal clear, what's your definition of a tangible claim? oh wait... i think you mention this later in the post...

And I am saying that is, in the posts I have written. You have instead surplanted your definition of truth into what I have written, I created absurd results. Of course you will.

When I am talking about truth here, that is all I mean. It may not correspond to what you consider as truth, but that is what I mean. Geddit?
did you mean "i created absurd results" or "you created absurd results"? by your definition of truth, the claim "all people who will or ever have attacked me are african americans" is true because it is an observation consistent with reality so far. i'm not surplanting my definition of truth here; this is your definition. and yes, the result is absurd. do you see? do you get it? do you understand what i'm saying?

Let us take an example.

"i'm just saying "11 dimensions" is intangible. by what FZ+ said earlier, this makes it unscientific and indeterminate."
This is precisely what I did not say. I used a definition of intangible which covered the indirect effects, and that is all I mean here. However, in these arguments, you present the misleading picture that I consider something determinate if it is physically existent, and then proceeded to argue over several posts with me with the idea that you know my opinion better than I do.

"some intangible claims are determinate and some are not. for example of the former, consider the warpage of space-time. i contend that while the effects of space-time warpage are tangible, the space-time warpage itself is not tangible."
Here you have blurred my contention with my argument.
this is when i wasn't aware of what you meant by intangible. i was using a common sense definition of intangible at the time, not unlike how the scientific definition of truth isn't common sense. there's nothing wrong with redefining truth or contradicting common sense as long as the theory is internally consistent.

Let's try and simplify this part of the argument once and for all. I have chosen the definition of tangible/intangible to differentiate against something that gives observable effects and predictions, and something that by definition cannot. For example, the claim that God buried a gold casket filled with antimatter under London Station is clearly gibberish, but it is tangible. Meanwhile, the contention that an absolutely undetectable substance exists in the universe is intangible, because as a matter of nature it can never be observed. The idea that an inverse square relation exists for gravity is tangible, since we can measure the strength of the magnetic field, and pink fairies are also tangible. The claim that God created the universe to look exactly like it would if God did not exist is intangible. The claim that God left some sort of signature to show that God did create the universe is tangible.

In short, I am sequestering the world tangible to refer to not just entities but ideas. I am not using the word to distinguish between abstract and concrete, as you show that you think I am.
i agree that in your definitions of intangible and determinable, it is indeterminate whether a by definition undetectible substance exists. the thing is that i'm not saying God's presence is undetectable (some people think it is). the human consciousness is able to detect it while, as far as i know, no instrument or device can. the claim that God left some sort of signature to show that God did create the universe is tangible and, furthermore, the signature is "readable" via the human consciousness and perhaps by other methods. get it? do you see? do you understand what i'm saying?

Now understand the context of that. The context is in point number one - we can never know everything. By Godel's theorem, nothing we can know can possibly be complete, and things that we must definitely think are true have often turned out not to be. By inference, I am saying that it is impossible to know anything as absolutely true, because the human mind is absolutely flawed. All we will end up would be an illusion of absolute truth, and a stagnating wall to progress. The process of knowledge relies on us asking questions, and someone taking anything as absolutely true is a fool.
Godel's theorem refers to mathematics and mathematical axioms, which are not the same as what we know. incompleteness is that there are theorems which cannot be proven with axioms and deduction to be either "true" or "false" (in the mathematical sense). how does that suggest that it is impossible to know something that is "true?" to me, it just suggests that it is impossible to prove it. you said "someone taking anything as absolutely true is a fool." an interesting conclusion can be drawn from this. when God knows something is true, it knows that it is absolutely true (being omniscient). therefore, God is a fool. interesting... if foolness is some kind of ordered relation, that suggests that eveyone is a fool; so singling anyone out and calling them a fool is pointless for everyone is a fool by that rationale.

if there is a God, it would have the power to grant a human access to absolute truth.

john nash used to write cryptic notes on blackboards around campus. once i wrote on a blackboard, "NOTHING is the key to the universe. a FOOL sees NOTHING."

What I then realised was that (presumeably) you were considering my conception of rationality at all. Rather, your example (irrational numbers) showed that you were in fact talking about things like common sense, which I consider as the delusion of absolute truth. What I considered as rational was to see things - old things, new things, old ideas, new ideas with skepticism, and continuously test them. That is often the stimulus for genius, and what differentiates genius from plain madness.

In effect, my definition of rational was the opposite of your definition of rational. The fanatic (who does not look without, but fools himself in self-righteousness) is the most irrational by my book, and the most rational in yours. Do you see?
a set of ideas you don't seem to be skeptical about are your definitions of truth, falsifibility, tangibility, provability, etc. an interesting self-contradiction. or perhaps you are skeptical about those ideas but just aren't public about the skepticism. if you're not skeptical about your own notions of truth (etc), then, by your definition, you are irrational. you sound pretty self-righteous about your notions. do you see?

cheers,
phoenix
 
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  • #87
Ivan Seeking
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Some of Einstein's Writings on Science and Religion

A site I happened upon:

http://condor.stcloudstate.edu/%7Elesikar/einstein/ [Broken]
 
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  • #88
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thanks. i'm posting that on my forum...
 
  • #89
FZ+
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by your definition of truth, the claim "all people who will or ever have attacked me are african americans" is true because it is an observation consistent with reality so far. i'm not surplanting my definition of truth here; this is your definition. and yes, the result is absurd.
Actually, that isn't absurd. You might for instance never get attacked, which would validate this perfectly. And it gives predictions. All well and good.
Just observe that what is true today will not always be true. You have surplanted your definition of true here when you say it is absurd. In the same way, a claim can be true within a specified surrounding in evidence. Eg. If I was blind, I can say it is true to me that light does not exist. But, you, with the benefit of more evidence - like vision - can note otherwise. So my claim is true only to a certain extent, at least until the additional evidence is communicated to him.

I was nudging more towards your statements that relativity is not scientific.

Do you touch?

this is when i wasn't aware of what you meant by intangible.
This was also before you disputed that you didn't understand what I am saying, and that you disagreed with my definitions.

the claim that God left some sort of signature to show that God did create the universe is tangible and, furthermore, the signature is "readable" via the human consciousness and perhaps by other methods.
Exactly. The moment we establish the significance of consciousness as an instrument rather than a processing centre, and rule out the huge variety of rival consciousness "measurements" that say the complete opposite, and look at the evidence from the full overview.

Do you hear?

Godel's theorem refers to mathematics and mathematical axioms, which are not the same as what we know.
No, godel's theorem refer's to all formal systems of logic, including itself.

how does that suggest that it is impossible to know something that is "true?" to me
That doesn't say that at all. It says it is impossible for you to know something that is true to me, and everyone else, in an absolute fashion.

when God knows something is true, it knows that it is absolutely true (being omniscient). therefore, God is a fool.
How can God know that he knows everything? That's part of the illogic of omnisicience. Also one of the reasons that most theologies that involve omniscience choose to say that God decides not to use it. (Other arguments involve preservation of free will etc etc.)

if foolness is some kind of ordered relation, that suggests that eveyone is a fool;
No, everyone who believes that they know everything is a fool.

if there is a God, it would have the power to grant a human access to absolute truth.
Even omniscience cannot transcend logic. If it could, there is no way we can talk about it reasonably.

Do you taste?

once i wrote on a blackboard, "NOTHING is the key to the universe. a FOOL sees NOTHING."
And this proves your sanity, how? :wink:

an interesting self-contradiction. or perhaps you are skeptical about those ideas but just aren't public about the skepticism. if you're not skeptical about your own notions of truth (etc), then, by your
That is correct. I am irrational.

Definitions, by my definition (:smile:) must be irrational. Because they only serve as labels for the chaos within. A think of something, and I throw a name at it - skepticism, truth, tangibility. However I try to formalise it, there is no way I can eliminate the inductive step, the sudden jump. I did not intend my thought processes to be "true", and I do not believe that there is a true instance of "correct", only conveniences that are agreed on - or at least understood, and that may be more useful in certain contexts.
Self-righteous? There is no right for me.

If someone says they are purely rational, they are either dead, or lying. We can always try to minimise our irrationality.
Look at my title, just above my avatar to the left of my post. What does it say?

We are all mad, but in different ways.

Do you smell?

The way I see it, there are two things that are attackable about my statements.

1. My claim that debates about claims that do not hold "tangibility" cannot acheive a conclusive (and so, useful) result short of finding inconsistencies. To disprove this, find a counterexample.

2. My claim that religions are not inherently unarguable.
 
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