Proof, or faith?

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Originally posted by megashawn
No. This is not the same. There is not some all knowing everything about evolution being with which we pray to and seek guidance.

With religion, if there truly was some all powerfull being, whom can do anything he wishes, then there is no good reason why there are so many religions that do not agree or compliment one another.

The failure of the above argument rest in an unspoken assumption on the motives of god or god(s). They may not care that most people won't choose the 'correct' religion, wishing only to reward the ones that guessed correctly.


In fact, you cannot provide that good reason, but merely attempt to sidestep by using that same logic on evolutionary matters.

The difference is, evolution is real, it happens, and we know it.
One, when I used the term evolution, I assumed you would realise it was short for 'Evolution with regards to the origins of man'.

That is still a theory, and extremely well evidenced theory and one which fits the evidence many orders of magnitude better than all other competing theories/hypothesis/creationist crap. And as a theory, it has not been proven. Had it been, then it would be a law, not a theory.

Despite all that, the fact that some disagree with it, no matter how misguided, allows the analogy to stand.

There are two ends of a spectrum, in talking about cultural views (and yes, science has its own culture, as do many religions). Cultural relativism and ethnocentrism. The former realizes that the values of any culture are only valid when it's own rules are applied. Applying the Islamic rules to western culture generates a highly skewed and distorted result. Ethnocentricism is the other end of the spectrum, where the belief that all values are absolute and that only one view is correct.

The latter seems to be the view you have of science - that it is the only cultural perspective and that all others are incorrect. While it is true that reality does have many truths that are culturally inviolate, the fact that we cannot know most of them seems to have been missed. Personally I consider that science has an edge on all the other cultures, with respect to tracking down facts and truth, because of the self-correcting nature of science, but that doesn't mean that at any one point in time we can say science has all the answers. In fact, science is mute with regard to all phenomena which cannot produce predictions that are falsifiable.
 
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The latter seems to be the view you have of science - that it is the only cultural perspective and that all others are incorrect. While it is true that reality does have many truths that are culturally inviolate, the fact that we cannot know most of them seems to have been missed. Personally I consider that science has an edge on all the other cultures, with respect to tracking down facts and truth, because of the self-correcting nature of science, but that doesn't mean that at any one point in time we can say science has all the answers. In fact, science is mute with regard to all phenomena which cannot produce predictions that are falsifiable.
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Finally, we get someone who realizes what's actually going on and is not an objective materialistic science zealot!

I agree with everything you said in your last post. I have been trying to point this out to others for some time with little or no success. You have put it much better than I have or can. Good post!
Once again; "The true test of another man's intelligence, is how much he agrees with you."

The one point that I would like to make is that while science may be "the best culture for tracking down facts and truth." Science, as you mention, is very limited in what it can do and what it does do. It does not address, or shouldn't, culture, ethic, moral, spiritual or religious issues. Psychology is more art than science. Science cannot tell us how to live, how to think, how to behave or how to relate to other or the world around us.

Science is very good at what it does; but, just as any tool used the wrong way or in the wrong place or both it can do more harm that good.

As you so well pointed out, Science has PROVED very little. Most scientists point this out immediately almost as a preface. They usually say that the evidence supports... or points to... or indicates the following. Yet many here and everywhere have simply substituted their Physics 101 text book for the Bible and are, as I have said before in other threads, just as fanatical and hardheaded as any group of religionist that I have ever encountered. Again good posts as are your others.
 
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Originally posted by Royce
Is the existence of the universe not enough physical evidence? Before you pooh pooh this I ask you is it any more unreasonable that the anthromorphic principle explaining why the universe is the way it is? Belief in a creator or a God can be just as logical and reasonable as the belief in the Big Bang or any other "theory" with little or no direct evidence to support it.
Censor your use of the word "theory". There is no such thing as a theory with no evidence. In fact, there is no such thing as a theory with a little bit of evidence. Big Bang theory is a theory, which means that it has been verified by rigorous scientific testing.

Just because it is "Science" does not make any more reasonable unless it is firmly based on observation and experiment that is repeatable and varifiable by others.

While evolution has observations and assumptions of what these observations mean and how they are interconnected, evolution makes no predictions that can be varified directly nor can experiments be preformed.
Not at all true. Just take the example of the fruit-flies, who are exposed to a toxin, and then the next generation of those fruit-flies is born immune to the toxin. There's a quick, simple, yet undeniable, prediction of evolution.
 
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Originally posted by radagast
One, when I used the term evolution, I assumed you would realise it was short for 'Evolution with regards to the origins of man'.

That is still a theory, and extremely well evidenced theory and one which fits the evidence many orders of magnitude better than all other competing theories/hypothesis/creationist crap. And as a theory, it has not been proven. Had it been, then it would be a law, not a theory.
Okay, this is something that has needed repeating to many times on the PFs, that it should be posted as an Announcement, and set as "Sticky": A theory can not ever be proven. A theory is the highest point on the Scientific Method. A Law is just something that is readily observable, and demonstrably, undeniably, true. If all Scientific discoveries became "Laws" eventually, then all things (even in the realm of Quantum Mechanics, Higher Dimensions, etc) should become readily visible, and demonstrable, but this will never happen.
 
megashawn
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The failure of the above argument rest in an unspoken assumption on the motives of god or god(s). They may not care that most people won't choose the 'correct' religion, wishing only to reward the ones that guessed correctly.
I agree with this, and this is really more like the kind of God I would imagine existing.

But when looking at a certain religion, say, christianity, you will notice certain things said such as "For god so loved man that he gave his only begotten son" or parts about "God loves every man"

You would'nt eternally punish a person you love now would you? Infact, if you really loved someone, would you not be sure to inform them on how to properly acheive there goals? I know I would.

This is why I say things such as The christian god cannot exist, or, he is not as the bible portrays him to be.


The latter seems to be the view you have of science - that it is the only cultural perspective and that all others are incorrect. While it is true that reality does have many truths that are culturally inviolate, the fact that we cannot know most of them seems to have been missed. Personally I consider that science has an edge on all the other cultures, with respect to tracking down facts and truth, because of the self-correcting nature of science, but that doesn't mean that at any one point in time we can say science has all the answers. In fact, science is mute with regard to all phenomena which cannot produce predictions that are falsifiable.
Well here is an assumption that a reading in almost any other thread, maybe this one will disprove. I've often said religions are good for teaching ppl how to live, interact, etc.

I've never claimed science to have all the answers. Hell, I don't even know what the weather is going to do from one day to the next.

Infact, I arrived at most my conclusions about religous matters without science, generally discarding a religion due to its own contradictions and fallacys. It is only since being a member here that I have begun researching more scientific things and using that knowledge to explain, if to noone else then myself, how this place can work without some all powerfull being pushing the buttons.

Royce:
Yet many here and everywhere have simply substituted their Physics 101 text book for the Bible and are, as I have said before in other threads, just as fanatical and hardheaded as any group of religionist that I have ever encountered. Again good posts as are your others.
If people are putting down there bibles and reading books that actually talk about real life events, real things, stuff that can actually happen, and is proven, then where is the harm?

You make out as if discarding a peice of mythology (thats all the bible is) for something educational is a bad thing.

The fact that particular attitude is prevalent in america and probably worldwide, is the very thing that is both holding us back.

I personally think that everyone should learn as much about every religion possible. I know thats a big thing to do, but when a person relizes "Hey, Ancient chinese were doing things about the same as ancient jews, 1500 years ahead of time, but believe in a different god". When a person realizes that all religions are the same, simply a tool for control and proper behavior, then we as a whole can move on into the future.

Or we can remained closed minded about your ideas and not be willing to accept that that which we've believed since a young age is completly wrong.
 
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Originally posted by Mentat
Censor your use of the word "theory". There is no such thing as a theory with no evidence. In fact, there is no such thing as a theory with a little bit of evidence. Big Bang theory is a theory, which means that it has been verified by rigorous scientific testing.
I used the word "theory" because it is commonly used to discribe what I would call pure speculation or at best hypothisis. To my knowledge the "Big Bang Theory" is pure speculation supported only by the observation that the universe is now expanding and assuming the it has been expanding since it began and then running the clock backwards to the assumed point of the beginning. It also is supported by the results of COBE measuring the background radiation of the local universe. It is assumed that it is universal and not local and that as it is very nearly the exact temperature to be left over from BB that it is just that. It may be a coincidence or a local phenomena. That is evidence only that there is local background radiation. The rest is assumption and speculation.

That's it. That is all the evidence of the Big Bang.

Not at all true. Just take the example of the fruit-flies, who are exposed to a toxin, and then the next generation of those fruit-flies is born immune to the toxin. There's a quick, simple, yet undeniable, prediction of evolution.
Again I disagree with your conclusions. The above is evidence of a single species adapting to a toxin and passing that adaption along. That is evidence of a possible mechanism of the theory of evolution. That is not direct evidence of Darwin's evolution or that is actually happened.

We have a bunch of fossils that seem to be related and seem to show fundamental structual change correlated to the age of the fossil.

There is no proof that these latter fossils are in fact related to and desended from the earlier ones. It is an assumption that they are and thus support the thoery not prove it.

Mentat, I have told you before that just because you read something in a book does not make it proven fact. I have, in my reading, found very little indication that the actual scientists are stating any more than I am. It is you and others like you that assume it to be proven and fact. Read more carefully the words that they actually say.

Some of course overstate their position and/or findings but few if any actually come out and say that a theory is actually proven fact.
Those that do usually get slapped down immediately.
 
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Originally posted by megashawn

Royce:

If people are putting down there bibles and reading books that actually talk about real life events, real things, stuff that can actually happen, and is proven, then where is the harm?

You make out as if discarding a peice of mythology (thats all the bible is) for something educational is a bad thing.

The fact that particular attitude is prevalent in america and probably worldwide, is the very thing that is both holding us back.

I personally think that everyone should learn as much about every religion possible. I know thats a big thing to do, but when a person relizes "Hey, Ancient chinese were doing things about the same as ancient jews, 1500 years ahead of time, but believe in a different god". When a person realizes that all religions are the same, simply a tool for control and proper behavior, then we as a whole can move on into the future.

Or we can remained closed minded about your ideas and not be willing to accept that that which we've believed since a young age is completly wrong.
You misunderstand my intent. I think we should all learn as much as possible about not only every religion but every science and keep an open mind about all of it, religion and science. That obviously is a very tall order and vertually impossible to do in real life.

What I am saying is that some people accept the theories and speculations of science as PROVEN FACT in one sentence and in the next say that these proven facts PROVE that God does not, need not and can not exist. Science does no such thing. Science has proven nothing absolutely other than it itself is often wrong or incomplete.
Science readily admits this and says that it is this self-correction that make it so powerful. I agree and understand.

When I and others try to point this out to some, we and our thoughts are rejected out of hand as and in some cases rudely so. It is very similair to trying to reason with any religious fanatic whose mind is made up and please don't confuse him with facts.

Scroll back and read Mentat's post and my response. This is mild and an ongoing discussion between buddies; but, it does illistrate my point. Mentat like to bull bait and play the devil's advocate. I know he is not nearly so fanatical nor closed mind.
 
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Originally posted by Royce
I used the word "theory" because it is commonly used to discribe what I would call pure speculation or at best hypothisis. To my knowledge the "Big Bang Theory" is pure speculation supported only by the observation that the universe is now expanding and assuming the it has been expanding since it began and then running the clock backwards to the assumed point of the beginning. It also is supported by the results of COBE measuring the background radiation of the local universe. It is assumed that it is universal and not local and that as it is very nearly the exact temperature to be left over from BB that it is just that. It may be a coincidence or a local phenomena. That is evidence only that there is local background radiation. The rest is assumption and speculation.

That's it. That is all the evidence of the Big Bang.
Right...the Big Bang at it's basic heart postulates that the Universe is expanding, and has been doing so since it's beginning, and makes predictions about background radiation and temperature. These predictions turn out to be correct, and we happend to observe the expansion of the Universe. How is that not proof that all of the postulates of the actual BB theory are true? Yes, there have been add-ons, such as explanations of what started the process, and what keeps it going, but these are not part of the theory, but merely hypotheses that are used to describe that which has graduated to "theory".

Again I disagree with your conclusions. The above is evidence of a single species adapting to a toxin and passing that adaption along. That is evidence of a possible mechanism of the theory of evolution. That is not direct evidence of Darwin's evolution or that is actually happened.
What are you talking about? The theory of evolution predicts the survival of the fittest, and that's what happens in the fruit-fly experiment. What else is there to show?

We have a bunch of fossils that seem to be related and seem to show fundamental structual change correlated to the age of the fossil.

There is no proof that these latter fossils are in fact related to and desended from the earlier ones. It is an assumption that they are and thus support the thoery not prove it.
Well sure it's an assumptions, but genetic recombination, meiotic mutation, and just plain observed differences between people and their parents, are supporting evidence of that "assumption".

Mentat, I have told you before that just because you read something in a book does not make it proven fact. I have, in my reading, found very little indication that the actual scientists are stating any more than I am. It is you and others like you that assume it to be proven and fact. Read more carefully the words that they actually say.
I have been. I think what your problem is, with many well-supported theories, is that you have been reading the books that go into the not-so-well-supported hypotheses that are used as possible explanations of the the theory. The theory itself stands alone from it's possible explanations, and most books don't show that (it often takes a reading of actual textbooks to find information on the theory itself).

Some of course overstate their position and/or findings but few if any actually come out and say that a theory is actually proven fact.
Those that do usually get slapped down immediately.
The Scientific Method itself (the very basis of Science) puts theories as the highest goal. It is not some crackpot scientist that thinks that theories are the grandest stage of scientific inquiry; it's a fact, at the very heart of the Scientific Method. Seriously, my good buddy Royce :smile:, one needs to make the intellectual distinction between layman texts and the actual science that they are trying to describe. A layman text will give you room for such arguments as "it's just a theory", or "it's not proven yet", but the actual science behind the theory is based on the Scientific Method, which sees nothing as being "beyond theory" (and sees "theories" as hypotheses that have been tested rigorously).
 
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Originally posted by Mentat
Right...the Big Bang at it's basic heart postulates that the Universe is expanding, and has been doing so since it's beginning, and makes predictions about background radiation and temperature. These predictions turn out to be correct, and we happend to observe the expansion of the Universe. How is that not proof that all of the postulates of the actual BB theory are true?
Simply to observe that thee universe is now expanding does not prove that it has always been expanding nor does it prove that running the clock backward to zero is valid.
Yes the background radiation is the correct temperature and supports the theory. If and only is the bachground radiation observed is that which iis left over from the big bang and not simply the temperature of the local universe that we happen to be observing which coincidentlty matches that of the BB. No proof. one observation and lots of assumptions does not a proven theory make.

What are you talking about? The theory of evolution predicts the survival of the fittest, and that's what happens in the fruit-fly experiment. What else is there to show?
What the experiment shows is that these particular fruit flies can over generations build up a tolerance for that toxin. It has been shown that other simple life forms can also. This does not prove the origins of species nor surfival of the fittest. It proves only what it tests. Too apply that too the rest of the world and its inhabitants is a BIG assumption.

Well sure it's an assumptions, but genetic recombination, meiotic mutation, and just plain observed differences between people and their parents, are supporting evidence of that "assumption".
Absolutely, but the keyword is assumption. I'm not denying that they are valid or invalid. I am pointing out that they are assumptions not proof.

I have been. I think what your problem is, with many well-supported theories, is that you have been reading the books that go into the not-so-well-supported hypotheses that are used as possible explanations of the the theory. The theory itself stands alone from it's possible explanations, and most books don't show that (it often takes a reading of actual textbooks to find information on the theory itself).
I read and studies those text books long before you were born, my friend, and have been studying various field of science since. In fortyfive or so years of study and reading I can not remember one proof that God does or does not exist or one proof that science knows anything as absolute fact. Even you have said that in other posts. Something like, science doesn't deal in absolutes whereas religion does.

My belief in God is based on just as rigid reasoning and observation as my belief in science. The difference is, is that I know and admit that both are based on belive and assumption and both are unknown and unknowable in any absolute terms. Science neither validates nor invalidates my theist belief just as my theist beliefs neither validae nor invalidate my scientific beliefs.
 
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Originally posted by Royce
Simply to observe that thee universe is now expanding does not prove that it has always been expanding nor does it prove that running the clock backward to zero is valid.
Actually, had you thought of the fact that expansion had to start at some point in time (obviously), and you'd need some kind of explanation of why/how it started expanding after already being "big", since you can't use the explanation of the BB theory - that all of the energy was condenced(sp?) into a much smaller "point".

Yes the background radiation is the correct temperature and supports the theory. If and only is the bachground radiation observed is that which iis left over from the big bang and not simply the temperature of the local universe that we happen to be observing which coincidentlty matches that of the BB. No proof. one observation and lots of assumptions does not a proven theory make.
Good buddy Royce, you left the realm of Science. In Science, a theory is "innocent 'till proven guilty" (or, more accurately, "true 'till proven false, and replaced by something better). That means that you can't just say "it could be a coincidence that the prediction turned out to match reality", you have to come up with a "better" theory ("better" meaning that either the one being replaced has a flaw that yours doesn't, or that yours makes less assumptions but is still just as accurate (Occam's Razor)) to replace BB with.

What the experiment shows is that these particular fruit flies can over generations build up a tolerance for that toxin. It has been shown that other simple life forms can also. This does not prove the origins of species nor surfival of the fittest. It proves only what it tests. Too apply that too the rest of the world and its inhabitants is a BIG assumption.
It's not "those particular fruit-flies", those have long since died - it is their children that were born with the immunity.

Besides, it's just an example of the change of a species over a certain period of time, due to some external pressure, and that is all that the pure evolutionary theory predicts (though some of the add-ons are rather convincing, they are not part of the pure theory).

Absolutely, but the keyword is assumption. I'm not denying that they are valid or invalid. I am pointing out that they are assumptions not proof.
Listen to yourself! They are not supposed to "be proof", they are supposed to "be proved". And the things I mentioned (along with quite a few other bits of undesputable fact/observation) are proofs for the theory.

I read and studies those text books long before you were born, my friend, and have been studying various field of science since. In fortyfive or so years of study and reading I can not remember one proof that God does or does not exist or one proof that science knows anything as absolute fact. Even you have said that in other posts. Something like, science doesn't deal in absolutes whereas religion does.
That's true, Science doesn't deal with absolutes, because absolutes are just assumptions, while theories can be drawn from Inductive/experimental methods.

Besides, I've already explained in many other threads that it is impossible to prove or disprove God.

My belief in God is based on just as rigid reasoning and observation as my belief in science. The difference is, is that I know and admit that both are based on belive and assumption and both are unknown and unknowable in any absolute terms. Science neither validates nor invalidates my theist belief just as my theist beliefs neither validae nor invalidate my scientific beliefs.
But the distinction is that there is no objective proof of any kind that validates the belief in God. Note: I'm not suggesting that it is wrong to believe in God, I am merely showing you the difference between Science and "belief" or "faith". Faith/belief do not need any kind of empirical basis, while Scientific theories cannot even come into existence without some kind of empirical proofs.
 
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Mentat,
I am not disputing the BB or Evolution. I am disputing that they have been PROVEN (your word not mine). If they have been proven they would be laws now not theories. Both are based on reasoning, deduction and assumptions. This is, we agree, valid scientific processes but it is not proof.

My only point is that my "theory" that God exists and created the universe (but not as told in the bible) is based on exactly the same process and not on faith alone. Why is it a valid process when termed scientific but not a valid process when termed metaphysical?
That is a double standard.

You cannot have it both ways ,Mentant. If one is valid the other is valid also. If one is not valid then neither is the other. I am not going to let you get away with contradicting yourself in the same post as you just did from one pargraph to the next; nor, am I going to let you pick and choose which or when the same system of reasoning is valid and when it is not valid.

The process is ether valid all the time whenever and wherever used or it is not valid ever, no matter when or where it is used. What makes the conclusion reached valid or not is the evidence that supports it and we are using the same evidence but looking at it in different ways.

I say God caused the BB to happen if indeed it did happen and God wrote the laws by which the universe behaves including life which is evidenced by the same data that supports evolution. I say that it shows intent, purpose and orgaization beyound that possible by chance alone.

You spport the pobability principle that it is all possible by chance alone. IOW all is a marvelous series of improbable accidents. My reply is, yes, that is very remotely possible but the universe is not old enough yet for it to have all happened by accident, probability, alone.

We are both making assumptions and basing those assumption of evidence, the same evidence but looked at in different ways. One way is no more valid or invalid than the other.
 
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Originally posted by Royce
I am not disputing the BB or Evolution. I am disputing that they have been PROVEN (your word not mine). If they have been proven they would be laws now not theories. Both are based on reasoning, deduction and assumptions. This is, we agree, valid scientific processes but it is not proof.
You are almost correct, and I'd love to just say that you are right and move on, but there is one clarification that must be made: A theory can never be proven to be absolutely true, but it can be proven to many degrees of accuracy (as far as Inductive Logic can be considered accurate).

My only point is that my "theory" that God exists and created the universe (but not as told in the bible) is based on exactly the same process and not on faith alone. Why is it a valid process when termed scientific but not a valid process when termed metaphysical?
That is a double standard.
No it's not, it's a scientific standard. First off, you haven't presented any proof that God created the Universe. Secondly, yours cannot ever be a "theory" or a "Law", if it is not scientific, as those are scientific terms. And Lastly, if God were metaphysical, He couldn't interact with the physical Universe, as I've shown in a previous thread.

You cannot have it both ways ,Mentant. If one is valid the other is valid also. If one is not valid then neither is the other. I am not going to let you get away with contradicting yourself in the same post as you just did from one pargraph to the next; nor, am I going to let you pick and choose which or when the same system of reasoning is valid and when it is not valid.
I don't contradict myself (at least not on purpose ) on the same thread. That would be just foolish.

The process is ether valid all the time whenever and wherever used or it is not valid ever, no matter when or where it is used. What makes the conclusion reached valid or not is the evidence that supports it and we are using the same evidence but looking at it in different ways.

I say God caused the BB to happen if indeed it did happen and God wrote the laws by which the universe behaves including life which is evidenced by the same data that supports evolution. I say that it shows intent, purpose and orgaization beyound that possible by chance alone.

You spport the pobability principle that it is all possible by chance alone. IOW all is a marvelous series of improbable accidents. My reply is, yes, that is very remotely possible but the universe is not old enough yet for it to have all happened by accident, probability, alone.
Well that final statement is dead wrong, since the Universe could have existed for any incalculable (perhaps infinite, though that rather boggles the mind) period of time.

We are both making assumptions and basing those assumption of evidence, the same evidence but looked at in different ways. One way is no more valid or invalid than the other.
You keep saying this, but I disagree, only in that you have provided no empirical evidence of the merit of your hypothesis.

Let me explain one thing: Science is, by it's very nature, agnostic. It cannot be used to "know" something. Thus, Science doesn't care about whether God did or didn't start the Universe's current processes, it only cares about the current processes themselves.
 
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Originally posted by Mentat

No it's not, it's a scientific standard. First off, you haven't presented any proof that God created the Universe. Secondly, yours cannot ever be a "theory" or a "Law", if it is not scientific, as those are scientific terms. And Lastly, if God were metaphysical, He couldn't interact with the physical Universe, as I've shown in a previous thread.
I am not trying to prove that God exist nor is it a theory. That's why I put quotes around it. What I am showing is that my reasoning and reasons for my beliefs are the product of a valid thought process and not a product of faith alone. This is the questiuon asked at the start of this thread.

One is science the other metaphysics, apples and oranges. I was showing why and how my reasoning is reasonable and valid, just as valid as the reasoning processes of science, though not science. A comparison not an identity.

I don't contradict myself (at least not on purpose ) on the same thread. That would be just foolish.
the following are quotes from previous post in this thread.

Censor your use of the word "theory". There is no such thing as a theory with no evidence. In fact, there is no such thing as a theory with a little bit of evidence.
Then another place you say:

Good buddy Royce, you left the realm of Science. In Science, a theory is "innocent 'till proven guilty" (or, more accurately, "true 'till proven false, and replaced by something better). That means that you can't just say "it could be a coincidence that the prediction turned out to match reality", you have to come up with a "better" theory ("better" meaning that either the one being replaced has a flaw that yours doesn't, or that yours makes less assumptions but is still just as accurate (Occam's Razor)) to replace BB with.
Well that final statement is dead wrong, since the Universe could have existed for any incalculable (perhaps infinite, though that rather boggles the mind) period of time.
Since the current prevailing model of the origins of the universe is the BB and we both accept it as probably true, my statement holds as the univererse is thought to be 10 - 15 billion years old and the earth itself is 1/3 of that age. There are as you said other models, but we always go back to First Cause don't we.

You keep saying this, but I disagree, only in that you have provided no empirical evidence of the merit of your hypothesis.
But, that is exactly what I am doing. I am using the same observations as those of science. The only difference is that I'm not using them as proof but as support for my alternate hypothesis.
I do not attempt to prove or disprove anything. I only show that the hypothesis that God exists and and created the universe is just as reasonable as any other alternative.

Let me explain one thing: Science is, by it's very nature, agnostic. It cannot be used to "know" something. Thus, Science doesn't care about whether God did or didn't start the Universe's current processes, it only cares about the current processes themselves.
Then why do you and others keep bring up science in metaphysical threads and claiming that your, science's, proven theories have proved that God does not exist, can not exist and/or need not exist.
 
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Originally posted by Royce
I am not trying to prove that God exist nor is it a theory. That's why I put quotes around it. What I am showing is that my reasoning and reasons for my beliefs are the product of a valid thought process and not a product of faith alone.
The product of what valid thought process?

One is science the other metaphysics, apples and oranges. I was showing why and how my reasoning is reasonable and valid, just as valid as the reasoning processes of science, though not science. A comparison not an identity.
But you have yet to show why your thought process (which you haven't described) is as valid as science.

the following are quotes from previous post in this thread.

Censor your use of the word "theory". There is no such thing as a theory with no evidence. In fact, there is no such thing as a theory with a little bit of evidence.
Then another place you say:

Good buddy Royce, you left the realm of Science. In Science, a theory is "innocent 'till proven guilty" (or, more accurately, "true 'till proven false, and replaced by something better). That means that you can't just say "it could be a coincidence that the prediction turned out to match reality", you have to come up with a "better" theory ("better" meaning that either the one being replaced has a flaw that yours doesn't, or that yours makes less assumptions but is still just as accurate (Occam's Razor)) to replace BB with.
Where is the contradiction? First I said that there is no such thing as a theory with a little bit of evidence (since it must have lots of evidence before it becomes a theory), and then I said that it is innocent 'till proven guilty, and that it's replacement theory must be able to explain the same phenomena that the previous theory did, and do a better job. I see no contradiction.

Since the current prevailing model of the origins of the universe is the BB and we both accept it as probably true, my statement holds as the univererse is thought to be 10 - 15 billion years old and the earth itself is 1/3 of that age. There are as you said other models, but we always go back to First Cause don't we.
You only mentioned one of the many BB theories. The BB theory says nothing other than "The known Universe was once smaller, but has expanded since then, and is still expanding". Whether the "known Universe" is expanding into another (larger, perhaps infinite) Universe, is not covered by the basic theory, and is up for hypothesis. How old our local Universe is can be known, but it may be expanding into another Universe, and we couldn't possibly gain knowledge of that one.

But, that is exactly what I am doing. I am using the same observations as those of science. The only difference is that I'm not using them as proof but as support for my alternate hypothesis.
I do not attempt to prove or disprove anything. I only show that the hypothesis that God exists and and created the universe is just as reasonable as any other alternative.
But you have not shown this. Science follows Inductive Logic, and thus doesn't attempt to "prove" anything, for a certainty. However, it does explain that which can be observed and studied objectively, which is something that you have not done.

Then why do you and others keep bring up science in metaphysical threads and claiming that your, science's, proven theories have proved that God does not exist, can not exist and/or need not exist.
I have never and will never say that Science proves that God doesn't exist (as I said before, it is agnostic at it's very heart, and can form no opinion of God or other such certainties - outside of the observable Universe), however I have said that Science shows that He needn't exist, because it can offer other ideas as to the origin of the Universe. Even you yourself have admitted that the idea of God is only as logical as any Sciences theories of origin (if even that logical, which remains to be determined), and thus Science doesn't care whether God exists or not, but cannot take for granted that He does.

Side Note: Science is atheistic, but not anti-theistic. Tom showed the difference in a previous thread. I'll paraphrase: Theism is the assumption that there is a deity of some kind. Anti-theism is the assumption that there is not. Atheism is just the lack of assumption on the matter (meaning, an atheist will not take for granted that God doesn't exist, but will not take for granted that He doesn't either, since that would make him/her an anti-theist).
 
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Your right Mentat, I haven't actually said what my reasoning is. I have implied it but not said it here in this threat. I hasve in other thread given parts and pieces but not the basis of my reasoning.

I am thinking og starting a new thread opening with my reasoning laid out step by step in paper or essay but have not yet done it because it is not yet clear in my mind how to actually put it into words without writing a book.

I will use this opportunity to give it a try, a rehearsal, if you will. Being buddies I know that if you blow it apart you will do it mildly. If you crucify me you will do it gently.

Reasoning for the existance of God the Creator

The universe is ordered and organized to a high degree. The Universe is logical, consistant and mathematical or can be described to extreme accuracy using matematics and logic. The universe has physical laws and rules that are knowable and consistant and that are obeyed and followed precisely at least on a macro scale.
The universe, if one assumes that the Big Bang actual took place and is the origin of the universe as we know it, has evolved from near total chaos to nearly total cosmos, to the point that stars have planets orbiting them that can and, at least on one, do support a thriving complex life form.
Both cosmological evolution and life's evolution here on Earth has led to us, Mankind, Homo Sapiens who can know, comprehend, search for and discover both the universe itself and what makes it work as it does. This leaves one glaring unanswered question. Why?
It is my reasoning that the creation and evolution of the universe shows purpose and intent as does the evolution of life at least here on Earth.
It is written that Man was created in God's image. I believe that it is not a physical image but a mental image that the statememnt refers to. Our logic and mathematics are solely abstranct products
of our mind yet these abstraction are able to discribe physical reality to a degree of accuracy that the margin of error has been compared to the thickness of a playing card when measuring the distance to the moon.
We of course have to modify our theories, laws, mathematics and logic from time to time in order to better model reality but we can do it and do do it. We humans can and do know the universe how it works and why it works the way it does from the largest structures of the universe to the smallest wave particle.
Our knowledge is not yet total nor complete nor is our understanding. It may never be. But, we do and can know the universe and understand it.
It is my reasonable hypothesis that Mankinds mind is created via purposful and intentional evolution, both cosmological and biological, in the image of the Creator, God. We are created in his mental image, the same method of reasoning, so that we can know both his creation and him.
Assuming that the Big Bang did actually start somewhere, somewhen, then it was God who started it; created that moment and energy or caused it to happen exactly how it happened with the exact properties to make it possible to expand and evolve into what it is today. It is God's laws that we discover and call natural or physical laws. It is our minds of the same order as Gods mind, but obviously not the same order of magnatude, that allows us to discover, know and understand Gods laws.
There is no apparent logical reason why like charges should repel and unlike charges should attract. There is no apparent logical reason why the strong and weak nuclear force, gravity or cosmological force should act the way they do. There is no apparent logical reason that QM and QED should behave the way they do. Yet all of this does behave the way it does and all of this is necessary for the universe to exist and for us to exist.
The universe is exactly the way it is because if it were not the exact way it is it would not exist at all much less be so ordered and organized that life, intelligent life can come to be, to know that it is and the universe is, and know, or wonder about, God.
This is all too much for me to believe that all of this is an accident of probability. Not only is the Universe exactly how it must, and can only, be; but, the series of events that came about that inevitably lead to us happened; and, happened in the exact order necessary to bring about intelligent life. This is to me at least too much to be coincidence or accident. It is evidence or support for purpose and intent and that is evidence and support for the existence of God the Creator. This too me is much more reasonable than random happenstance or accident. It is, to me, just as reasonable and says more than the anthropic principle.
 
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megashawn
Science Advisor
435
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Royce, no offense here, but you are doing the exact same thing that man has done all through time.

You don't know why like forces repel, and therefore attribute it to god.

Perhaps, in our pursuit of knowledge, we will discover a logicical reason why, but at this point in time, you say there is no logical reason.

To me, there is no logical reason to abandon hope in finding a "logical reason why" and simply attribute it as a quality/ability of god.

Hey, if it makes it easier for ya to wake up and breath, even though there is no logical reason why you should have to breath, by all means pursue it.

It is just as the man who walked out his cave one day, and saw a tree get struck by lighting, and start fire.

He doesn't know what just happened, and since all he knows is a flash of power came from the sky, he thinks its either a gift or threat from some person above.

Well, now we've got a Lighting God.

I don't really see a need in arguing about an actual god. I mean, lets face it, unless God himself comes and tells us whats going on, none of us are going to agree 100%.

And really, if you look at the powers all most every religion grants there gods, frankly, there is no logical reason why the true god has not revealed himself.

I'll not argue that there may be some grand designer behind the universe we know.

Maybe. Thats all any of us can really do. Honestly, we don't know enough about the universe to determine if it was designed to be the way it is, or if it is a fluke.

This leaves one glaring unanswered question. Why?
But even the God theory does not fufill this question. Where did god come from? How was he created? Why was he created? Why did he create the universe? If, from a christian POV, god is all powerfull, why didn't he skip the drama (last however many years) and simply create a perfect society? Why?

I could keep going. It seems to me adding an all powerfull god into the scheme only makes things more complex.

And I'd say lets take a ride on Occams razor, until god himself wants to set the record strait.
 
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At one time in my life I agreed completely with you and I can still see your point of view. I still agree with much that you say.
The one thing, in purely intellectual reasoning, that points to God, the creative mind, in my opinion, is the exactness and precision with which the universe came into being. If things were not exactly as they are the universe would not exist at all or in any form that could lead to life and intellegence coming about. That and the fact that a purely abstract creation of the mind of ancient man has developed into the logic and mathematics we use today to describe the univerce with such accuracy. I seems to support the idea that a mind of the same type of reasoning and intellegence but far greater power created it and its laws. Maybe I should call it the super anthropic principle.
The above is not the only reasons that I am convinced that God is and cares. It is only the rational reasons I do.
 
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Originally posted by Royce
I used the word "theory" because it is commonly used to describe what I would call pure speculation or at best hypothisis.

This is a danger. Theory, as common usage (which you say is the definition you are using) isn't the same word (by definition) as that used in science.

In science, theories always have a high degree of evidence to support them. Even a hypothesis has a good amount of evidence. In science terminology, your definition doesn't match the words theory or hypothesis. Perhaps speculation. Take care to make certain the terms aren't used interchangably, in a scientific context. It leads to great misunderstanding.


To my knowledge the "Big Bang Theory" is pure speculation supported only by the observation that the universe is now expanding and assuming the it has been expanding since it began and then running the clock backwards to the assumed point of the beginning. It also is supported by the results of COBE measuring the background radiation of the local universe. It is assumed that it is universal and not local and that as it is very nearly the exact temperature to be left over from BB that it is just that. It may be a coincidence or a local phenomena. That is evidence only that there is local background radiation. The rest is assumption and speculation.

That's it. That is all the evidence of the Big Bang.
Based on the evidence we have, which is fairly considerable, the BB fits better than other theories, hypotheses, or speculations, assuming Occam razor is still available for use. We have to make assuptions on generalization of the local conditions, unless we wish to simply throw up our arms and consider the problems not worthy of investigation. Unless you have a better way of investigating it, it is necessary, and though often unspoken, known to any scientist. I have always known that there was an assumption, as a chemist, that the physical constants I see in effect when I measure the rates of reaction, are the same here as at the opposite ends of the galaxy. Until such time as we can check, this is not a bizarre or strained assumption.


Again I disagree with your conclusions. The above is evidence of a single species adapting to a toxin and passing that adaption along. That is evidence of a possible mechanism of the theory of evolution. That is not direct evidence of Darwin's evolution or that is actually happened.
Modern evolutionary theory is based on two things, mutation, and natural selection. Both are about as close to proven as anything I accept as real.

Evolution, as in the origin of man vs. the evolution we see everyday (animal husbandry, microbial resistance to antibiotics, et. al.), isn't proven. Without a time machine, it would be fairly hard to. It does have a vast amount of evidence to support it, and explains the evidence better that any other theory, assuming Mr. Occams razor isn't prematurely discarded.

I would very much like to see the evidence, for the species, which in one generation acquired toxin resistance (with no evidence that it was a small, but already existent capability in some of their genetic makeup).



We have a bunch of fossils that seem to be related and seem to show fundamental structual change correlated to the age of the fossil.

There is no proof that these latter fossils are in fact related to and desended from the earlier ones. It is an assumption that they are and thus support the thoery not prove it.
You are correct. However, the theory is the best explanation we currently have for that evidence. Without a time machine, it is never possible to prove things that happened in prehistory, without some axiomatic assumptions (such as their were no magical fairies mucking with the laws of nature, etc.).


Mentat, I have told you before that just because you read something in a book does not make it proven fact. I have, in my reading, found very little indication that the actual scientists are stating any more than I am. It is you and others like you that assume it to be proven and fact. Read more carefully the words that they actually say.
To say they are proven is certainly an error. Aspects of many theories are proven, but I have never heard of any theory that has been proven - it's just not part of science.

By the same token, many theories have more supporting evidence than the things we take as fact in daily life. I cannot say if you are using the terms this way, but too many non-science types tend to like to use the word theory, with it's non-science definition, as if it's merely speculation or opinion.



In Response to thinks written by mentat and megashawn. While we are likely of similar minds on most scientific realities, your terms have really given me the willies. ANYONE that bandies the word 'facts', 'truth', and 'proven' around with impunity, starts revving up my BS detector. These are terms I expect to hear from religious zealots, but almost never heard from the scientific community.
 
megashawn
Science Advisor
435
0
Uhm, What do you mean? Could you perhaps provide an example?
 
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Radagast, I agree completely with you in everything you've said.
I used quotes around theory to show that I was using in inapproperiately as Mentat had and does unless he is chastising others not to.
My reasoning is speculation based on the same evidence as science has on the begining and evolution of both the universe and evolution.
I have very little doubt that they are valid and for the most part true though not complete nor completely understood. For those reasons I think that the common use of the term theory applied to them including most scientist is improper in the strict scientific use of the term and that is what I was trying to point out.
None of this has anything to do with the topic of this thread nor my post "Reasoning for the existance of God the Creator."
 
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Originally posted by Royce
Your right Mentat, I haven't actually said what my reasoning is. I have implied it but not said it here in this threat. I hasve in other thread given parts and pieces but not the basis of my reasoning.

I am thinking og starting a new thread opening with my reasoning laid out step by step in paper or essay but have not yet done it because it is not yet clear in my mind how to actually put it into words without writing a book.

I will use this opportunity to give it a try, a rehearsal, if you will. Being buddies I know that if you blow it apart you will do it mildly. If you crucify me you will do it gently.

Reasoning for the existance of God the Creator

The universe is ordered and organized to a high degree. The Universe is logical, consistant and mathematical or can be described to extreme accuracy using matematics and logic. The universe has physical laws and rules that are knowable and consistant and that are obeyed and followed precisely at least on a macro scale.
The universe, if one assumes that the Big Bang actual took place and is the origin of the universe as we know it, has evolved from near total chaos to nearly total cosmos, to the point that stars have planets orbiting them that can and, at least on one, do support a thriving complex life form.
Both cosmological evolution and life's evolution here on Earth has led to us, Mankind, Homo Sapiens who can know, comprehend, search for and discover both the universe itself and what makes it work as it does. This leaves one glaring unanswered question. Why?
It is my reasoning that the creation and evolution of the universe shows purpose and intent as does the evolution of life at least here on Earth.
It is written that Man was created in God's image. I believe that it is not a physical image but a mental image that the statememnt refers to. Our logic and mathematics are solely abstranct products
of our mind yet these abstraction are able to discribe physical reality to a degree of accuracy that the margin of error has been compared to the thickness of a playing card when measuring the distance to the moon.
We of course have to modify our theories, laws, mathematics and logic from time to time in order to better model reality but we can do it and do do it. We humans can and do know the universe how it works and why it works the way it does from the largest structures of the universe to the smallest wave particle.
Our knowledge is not yet total nor complete nor is our understanding. It may never be. But, we do and can know the universe and understand it.
It is my reasonable hypothesis that Mankinds mind is created via purposful and intentional evolution, both cosmological and biological, in the image of the Creator, God. We are created in his mental image, the same method of reasoning, so that we can know both his creation and him.
Assuming that the Big Bang did actually start somewhere, somewhen, then it was God who started it; created that moment and energy or caused it to happen exactly how it happened with the exact properties to make it possible to expand and evolve into what it is today. It is God's laws that we discover and call natural or physical laws. It is our minds of the same order as Gods mind, but obviously not the same order of magnatude, that allows us to discover, know and understand Gods laws.
There is no apparent logical reason why like charges should repel and unlike charges should attract. There is no apparent logical reason why the strong and weak nuclear force, gravity or cosmological force should act the way they do. There is no apparent logical reason that QM and QED should behave the way they do. Yet all of this does behave the way it does and all of this is necessary for the universe to exist and for us to exist.
The universe is exactly the way it is because if it were not the exact way it is it would not exist at all much less be so ordered and organized that life, intelligent life can come to be, to know that it is and the universe is, and know, or wonder about, God.
This is all too much for me to believe that all of this is an accident of probability. Not only is the Universe exactly how it must, and can only, be; but, the series of events that came about that inevitably lead to us happened; and, happened in the exact order necessary to bring about intelligent life. This is to me at least too much to be coincidence or accident. It is evidence or support for purpose and intent and that is evidence and support for the existence of God the Creator. This too me is much more reasonable than random happenstance or accident. It is, to me, just as reasonable and says more than the anthropic principle.
Where have I seen this before...hm .

Seriously, I've already picked this apart, since it's exactly what you wrote in your first post. All you are doing is explaining (through the use of partially faulty reasoning - as I've already shown) why you wont accept that it came about without intelligent design. You are not reasoning as to why it must (logically, scientifically, or in any way philosophically) be true.

That is what I meant by "present your reasoning".
 
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Originally posted by Royce
At one time in my life I agreed completely with you and I can still see your point of view. I still agree with much that you say.
The one thing, in purely intellectual reasoning, that points to God, the creative mind, in my opinion, is the exactness and precision with which the universe came into being. If things were not exactly as they are the universe would not exist at all or in any form that could lead to life and intellegence coming about. That and the fact that a purely abstract creation of the mind of ancient man has developed into the logic and mathematics we use today to describe the univerce with such accuracy. I seems to support the idea that a mind of the same type of reasoning and intellegence but far greater power created it and its laws. Maybe I should call it the super anthropic principle.
I'm sorry, but I don't see why it is logical to assume that the fact that humans have been able to develop logic, to describe the behavior of the Universe so accurately, is any indication that it (the Universe) was initially created to be logical. After all, it could have been (as I've said numerous times) one of an enormous number of Big Bangs, possibly the only one that continued existing.

The above is not the only reasons that I am convinced that God is and cares. It is only the rational reasons I do.
Rational reasons are independent of "I refuse to believe" statements. I say this because rationality and logic are completely free of personal biases.

(PM)
 
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Originally posted by Royce
Radagast, I agree completely with you in everything you've said.
I used quotes around theory to show that I was using in inapproperiately as Mentat had and does unless he is chastising others not to.
Excuse me, but search as hard as you wish, you will (most likely) never find a post where I have misused "theory" in the way that I chastise others for doing.

I am very meticulous about my own use of that word, and I despise hypocrisy (so I would never chastise others for doing as I myself do).

Of course, should you find such a post, I should be rather embarrased, but I sincerely doubt that you will.
 

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