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Thread: Failed prophecy.

  1. Top | #151
    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ruby sparks View Post
    Notgraspingthenettleism is not currently a widely recognised philosophical position, but who knows, maybe one day.......
    No, but agnosticism - the belief that one cannot know what is fundamentally true of the universe, and that wisdom lies in not speaking as though one does - has quite a history. Believe it or not, I did not invent the concept.
    The problem is that while philosophers and theologians have wallowed in their ignorance to the point of declaring it a virtue, physicists have been busily finding out what is fundamentally true of the universe, and have been so successful in this endeavour as to determine that many of the assumptions made by theologists regarding what is knowable are certainly and unequivocally false.

    The soul, an afterlife, the effectiveness of prayer, divine intervention in human affairs, and the performing of miracles (including the key elements of the Christ story) have all been shown to be incompatible with reality.

    Agnosticism on these matters is therefore just another form of ignorance.

    You needn't know Quantum Field Theory in order to hold a belief; But if you don't know QFT, you can't claim that your beliefs are fully informed, or in any way reasonable.

    If you don't at least have a basic grasp of fundamental physics, you are incapable of having a useful opinion about the nature of reality - just as a person who believes that the Earth may be flat is incapable of having a useful opinion about geography or navigation.

    The Laws Underlying the Physics of Everyday Life are Completely Understood

    Seriously: The Laws Underlying the Physics of Everyday Life Really are Completely Understood

    It's one thing to say 'I don't know where Peru is', and quite another to suggest with a straight face that 'one cannot, fundamentally, ever know where Peru is'. We have the knowledge of the shape of the Earth, and the coordinate system that allows us to specify any point on the Earth's surface, and the knowledge that Peru must be somewhere on that surface. These things are known - even if some individuals don't know them - and so we can, with certainty, reject the suggestion that Peru might be on Mars, or Saturn.

    Similarly, we know how the stuff we are made of interacts with the rest of reality - we know ALL of the ways this can happen - and so we can rule out substance dualism, souls, afterlives and miracles, just as confidently as we rule out the possibility that Lima nestles in the foothills of Olympus Mons.
    Last edited by bilby; 05-01-2019 at 11:05 PM.

  2. Top | #152
    Sapere aude Politesse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ruby sparks View Post
    Notgraspingthenettleism is not currently a widely recognised philosophical position, but who knows, maybe one day.......
    No, but agnosticism - the belief that one cannot know what is fundamentally true of the universe, and that wisdom lies in not speaking as though one does - has quite a history. Believe it or not, I did not invent the concept.
    The problem is that while philosophers and theologians have wallowed in their ignorance to the point of declaring it a virtue, physicists have been busily finding out what is fundamentally true of the universe, and have been so successful in this endeavour as to determine that many of the assumptions of theology are certainly and unequivocally false.

    The soul, an afterlife, the effectiveness of prayer, divine intervention in human affairs, and the performing of miracles (including the Christ story) have all been shown to be incompatible with reality.

    Agnosticism on these matters is therefore just another form of ignorance.

    You needn't know Quantum Field Theory in order to hold a belief; But if you don't know QFT, you can't claim that your beliefs are fully informed, or in any way reasonable.

    If you don't at least have a basic grasp of fundamental physics, you are incapable of having a useful opinion about the nature of reality - just as a person who believes that the Earth may be flat is incapable of having a useful opinion about geography or navigation.
    I have no problem with crediting the discoveries of physics. If you believe that the central hypothesis of atheism can be supported by empirical evidence, I'm interested.

  3. Top | #153
    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post

    The problem is that while philosophers and theologians have wallowed in their ignorance to the point of declaring it a virtue, physicists have been busily finding out what is fundamentally true of the universe, and have been so successful in this endeavour as to determine that many of the assumptions of theology are certainly and unequivocally false.

    The soul, an afterlife, the effectiveness of prayer, divine intervention in human affairs, and the performing of miracles (including the Christ story) have all been shown to be incompatible with reality.

    Agnosticism on these matters is therefore just another form of ignorance.

    You needn't know Quantum Field Theory in order to hold a belief; But if you don't know QFT, you can't claim that your beliefs are fully informed, or in any way reasonable.

    If you don't at least have a basic grasp of fundamental physics, you are incapable of having a useful opinion about the nature of reality - just as a person who believes that the Earth may be flat is incapable of having a useful opinion about geography or navigation.
    I have no problem with crediting the discoveries of physics. If you believe that the central hypothesis of atheism can be supported by empirical evidence, I'm interested.
    Please refer to my edited post, and the links I have added.

    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post

    The Laws Underlying the Physics of Everyday Life are Completely Understood

    Seriously: The Laws Underlying the Physics of Everyday Life Really are Completely Understood

    It's one thing to say 'I don't know where Peru is', and quite another to suggest with a straight face that 'one cannot, fundamentally, ever know where Peru is'. We have the knowledge of the shape of the Earth, and the coordinate system that allows us to specify any point on the Earth's surface, and the knowledge that Peru must be somewhere on that surface. These things are known - even if some individuals don't know them - and so we can, with certainty, reject the suggestion that Peru might be on Mars, or Saturn.

    Similarly, we know how the stuff we are made of interacts with the rest of reality - we know ALL of the ways this can happen - and so we can rule out substance dualism, souls, afterlives and miracles, just as confidently as we rule out the possibility that Lima nestles in the foothills of Olympus Mons.
    Pretty much every religion in history is ruled out by modern physics; I will allow that there are hypothetical 'gods of the gaps' that are not 100% ruled out, but these are not the gods that any significant number of humans have ever believed in - and they cannot be in any way important to us today, other than as intellectual curiosities. A god that started the universe, and then played no further role in it, is merely incredibly unlikely (and of little interest or importance); But all other god hypotheses are impossible.

  4. Top | #154
    Sapere aude Politesse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post

    Please refer to my edited post, and the links I have added.

    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post

    The Laws Underlying the Physics of Everyday Life are Completely Understood

    Seriously: The Laws Underlying the Physics of Everyday Life Really are Completely Understood

    It's one thing to say 'I don't know where Peru is', and quite another to suggest with a straight face that 'one cannot, fundamentally, ever know where Peru is'. We have the knowledge of the shape of the Earth, and the coordinate system that allows us to specify any point on the Earth's surface, and the knowledge that Peru must be somewhere on that surface. These things are known - even if some individuals don't know them - and so we can, with certainty, reject the suggestion that Peru might be on Mars, or Saturn.

    Similarly, we know how the stuff we are made of interacts with the rest of reality - we know ALL of the ways this can happen - and so we can rule out substance dualism, souls, afterlives and miracles, just as confidently as we rule out the possibility that Lima nestles in the foothills of Olympus Mons.
    Pretty much every religion in history is ruled out by modern physics; I will allow that there are hypothetical 'gods of the gaps' that are not 100% ruled out, but these are not the gods that any significant number of humans have ever believed in - and they cannot be in any way important to us today, other than as intellectual curiosities. A god that started the universe, and then played no further role in it, is merely incredibly unlikely (and of little interest or importance); But all other god hypotheses are impossible.
    An... opinion piece in a popular magazine?

  5. Top | #155
    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post

    Please refer to my edited post, and the links I have added.

    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post

    The Laws Underlying the Physics of Everyday Life are Completely Understood

    Seriously: The Laws Underlying the Physics of Everyday Life Really are Completely Understood

    It's one thing to say 'I don't know where Peru is', and quite another to suggest with a straight face that 'one cannot, fundamentally, ever know where Peru is'. We have the knowledge of the shape of the Earth, and the coordinate system that allows us to specify any point on the Earth's surface, and the knowledge that Peru must be somewhere on that surface. These things are known - even if some individuals don't know them - and so we can, with certainty, reject the suggestion that Peru might be on Mars, or Saturn.

    Similarly, we know how the stuff we are made of interacts with the rest of reality - we know ALL of the ways this can happen - and so we can rule out substance dualism, souls, afterlives and miracles, just as confidently as we rule out the possibility that Lima nestles in the foothills of Olympus Mons.
    Pretty much every religion in history is ruled out by modern physics; I will allow that there are hypothetical 'gods of the gaps' that are not 100% ruled out, but these are not the gods that any significant number of humans have ever believed in - and they cannot be in any way important to us today, other than as intellectual curiosities. A god that started the universe, and then played no further role in it, is merely incredibly unlikely (and of little interest or importance); But all other god hypotheses are impossible.
    An... opinion piece in a popular magazine?
    Written by a well respected physicist.

    Do you disagree with any of his points, or are you just going to use the fact that this isn't a peer reviewed paper in a high impact factor scientific journal as an excuse not to even look at them?

    It's a well written popular article on the topic. If you have the inclination, you can verify his claims in the scientific literature; None of the facts he claims are controversial amongst physicists.

    If you think that the only thing wrong with the information is its source, then you are forced either to accept its veracity, or to commit an argument from lack of authority fallacy.

    If you want to refute my argument (and Prof. Carroll's), then you need to show what is wrong with it - not just denigrate the forum in which it is presented.

  6. Top | #156
    Quantum Hot Dog Kharakov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post
    Pretty much every religion in history is ruled out by modern physics; I will allow that there are hypothetical 'gods of the gaps' that are not 100% ruled out, but these are not the gods that any significant number of humans have ever believed in - and they cannot be in any way important to us today, other than as intellectual curiosities. A god that started the universe, and then played no further role in it, is merely incredibly unlikely (and of little interest or importance); But all other god hypotheses are impossible.
    Wait. I thought the physical world was designed to hide God's existence from demonic atheists who couldn't handle omnipresence because they are drama queens who over react to the idea of a being that knows their every thought.

    And when they poop. Keeps track of every time they poop. How much. Down to the quantum level. Literally (in the book of 2s).

  7. Top | #157
    Contributor DBT's Avatar
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    Predictability being the key. Poop having a far better track record than prophesy in Scripture....sorry to say.

  8. Top | #158
    Sapere aude Politesse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post

    An... opinion piece in a popular magazine?
    Written by a well respected physicist.

    Do you disagree with any of his points, or are you just going to use the fact that this isn't a peer reviewed paper in a high impact factor scientific journal as an excuse not to even look at them?

    It's a well written popular article on the topic. If you have the inclination, you can verify his claims in the scientific literature; None of the facts he claims are controversial amongst physicists.

    If you think that the only thing wrong with the information is its source, then you are forced either to accept its veracity, or to commit an argument from lack of authority fallacy.

    If you want to refute my argument (and Prof. Carroll's), then you need to show what is wrong with it - not just denigrate the forum in which it is presented.
    I have every respect for Sean Caroll. But I also know that he knows the difference between data and opinion. I have no issue with the article, but it doesn't actually say very much if you're really reading it carefully. He's a positivist. That's fine. A valid belief, in my opinion. Not a scientific conclusion, though.

  9. Top | #159
    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post

    An... opinion piece in a popular magazine?
    Written by a well respected physicist.

    Do you disagree with any of his points, or are you just going to use the fact that this isn't a peer reviewed paper in a high impact factor scientific journal as an excuse not to even look at them?

    It's a well written popular article on the topic. If you have the inclination, you can verify his claims in the scientific literature; None of the facts he claims are controversial amongst physicists.

    If you think that the only thing wrong with the information is its source, then you are forced either to accept its veracity, or to commit an argument from lack of authority fallacy.

    If you want to refute my argument (and Prof. Carroll's), then you need to show what is wrong with it - not just denigrate the forum in which it is presented.
    I have every respect for Sean Caroll. But I also know that he knows the difference between data and opinion. I have no issue with the article, but it doesn't actually say very much if you're really reading it carefully. He's a positivist. That's fine. A valid belief, in my opinion. Not a scientific conclusion, though.
    Well it's pretty hard to hold the opinion that there's an unknown interaction between humans and 'souls' or 'gods', when you are aware that the conclusion of our best scientific evidence is that no unknown interactions are possible.

    It's pretty watertight - you either reject our best science; Or you reject the core concepts of the vast majority of religions. All of which have incredibly weak foundations.

    It's really no less silly to believe in a flat Earth than it is to believe in gods or souls - The only substantive difference is that most people do not have a good grasp of the science in the latter case. But that's just ignorance.

  10. Top | #160
    Sapere aude Politesse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post

    I have every respect for Sean Caroll. But I also know that he knows the difference between data and opinion. I have no issue with the article, but it doesn't actually say very much if you're really reading it carefully. He's a positivist. That's fine. A valid belief, in my opinion. Not a scientific conclusion, though.
    Well it's pretty hard to hold the opinion that there's an unknown interaction between humans and 'souls' or 'gods', when you are aware that the conclusion of our best scientific evidence is that no unknown interactions are possible.

    It's pretty watertight - you either reject our best science; Or you reject the core concepts of the vast majority of religions. All of which have incredibly weak foundations.

    It's really no less silly to believe in a flat Earth than it is to believe in gods or souls - The only substantive difference is that most people do not have a good grasp of the science in the latter case. But that's just ignorance.
    The article you link doesn't say any of the things that you are saying, neither do all religions, let alone religious people, say the things that you say they say.

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