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Theism - The feel in your head

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  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    Balrog99 said:

    bob_veng said:

    bob_veng said:

    i think we do, but we can't know each other's total sensation of what it's like to be alive. if we were to feel being someone else briefly, and return to our consciousness, we woul feel someting very familiar, some general grounding element of being in a shared material world, but also something very, VERY unfamiliar and other . i think we don't appreciate enough how other people, everyone, experiences life differently from us, how their experience is qualitatively different, and probably more varied than we can imagine.
    basically i think everyone has a general mood of being themselves even if they don't know it and think that being, for example, happy or sad connects them with other people more substantially then these states are a part of an undivided continuum that is still completely distinct from other continuums. each person is a feeling of being himself - in themselves. if i were to be you for a second, i would feel a totally new sensation, a totally new mood and texture of reality for that second.

    Right, that's why it's important to examine reality in ways that can confirm what is actually part of the shared reality and what is not. The best tool we have so far for that is science. Angels and miracles don't seem to fall into what is there, and therefore they are not real, and they cannot be real for some people and not for others per my definition of real. If you believe in a subjective reality, then sure.
    that's a normative statement. what you think is important, i.e. your "should" may not be someone else's "should"
    You don't agree? Why not?
    Balrog99 said:

    bob_veng said:

    bob_veng said:

    i think we do, but we can't know each other's total sensation of what it's like to be alive. if we were to feel being someone else briefly, and return to our consciousness, we woul feel someting very familiar, some general grounding element of being in a shared material world, but also something very, VERY unfamiliar and other . i think we don't appreciate enough how other people, everyone, experiences life differently from us, how their experience is qualitatively different, and probably more varied than we can imagine.
    basically i think everyone has a general mood of being themselves even if they don't know it and think that being, for example, happy or sad connects them with other people more substantially then these states are a part of an undivided continuum that is still completely distinct from other continuums. each person is a feeling of being himself - in themselves. if i were to be you for a second, i would feel a totally new sensation, a totally new mood and texture of reality for that second.

    Right, that's why it's important to examine reality in ways that can confirm what is actually part of the shared reality and what is not. The best tool we have so far for that is science. Angels and miracles don't seem to fall into what is there, and therefore they are not real, and they cannot be real for some people and not for others per my definition of real. If you believe in a subjective reality, then sure.
    that's a normative statement. what you think is important, i.e. your "should" may not be someone else's "should"


    What if some people are more sensitive to the spiritual realm? Their reality may not even be close to your reality or mine. We're hypothetically talking about alternate planes of existence here so no individual's reality can be defined as 'real'.
    I haven't seen any compelling evidence to suggest there is a spiritual realm.
    The whole point of a spiritual realm is that it's spiritual and can't be comprehended by the normal human senses. Your not believing in it doesn't make it any less 'real', nor does any person's belief in it make it any more 'real'. I take the view that I don't know one way or the other and I'm fine with that. I would never say for certain there is or isn't a spiritual plane because I'm not in any position to know. Also, the older I get, the less I care one way the other, either...
    Right, I don't know either, but given there is no evidence the only rational thing is to not believe. Just like I don't believe in unicorns or fairies until someone can demonstrate their existence.

    I had a shower thought: what if we invented a time machine or some other method to conclusively show your religion is a fabrication. Would that affect your belief? How and why (not)?

  • fluke13fluke13 Member Posts: 325
    One thing I learnt back in school - philosophy of religion (which seems relevent to the last couple of pages)...

    Someone came up with the proposition that "only statements that are empirically verifiable (i.e. verifiable through the senses) are cognitively meaningful, or else they are truths of logic (tautologies)."

    Therefore it was argued that all talk about God, life after death or spirituality was meaningless.

    A lot of people agreed for a while, until someone pointed out that the original statement (in quotes above) can't be empirically verified either :)

    Grond0FinneousPJBalrog99Grammarsalad
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    fluke13 said:

    One thing I learnt back in school - philosophy of religion (which seems relevent to the last couple of pages)...

    Someone came up with the proposition that "only statements that are empirically verifiable (i.e. verifiable through the senses) are cognitively meaningful, or else they are truths of logic (tautologies)."

    Therefore it was argued that all talk about God, life after death or spirituality was meaningless.

    A lot of people agreed for a while, until someone pointed out that the original statement (in quotes above) can't be empirically verified either :)

    What was the lesson learned? ;)

  • Balrog99Balrog99 Member Posts: 4,985

    Balrog99 said:

    bob_veng said:

    bob_veng said:

    i think we do, but we can't know each other's total sensation of what it's like to be alive. if we were to feel being someone else briefly, and return to our consciousness, we woul feel someting very familiar, some general grounding element of being in a shared material world, but also something very, VERY unfamiliar and other . i think we don't appreciate enough how other people, everyone, experiences life differently from us, how their experience is qualitatively different, and probably more varied than we can imagine.
    basically i think everyone has a general mood of being themselves even if they don't know it and think that being, for example, happy or sad connects them with other people more substantially then these states are a part of an undivided continuum that is still completely distinct from other continuums. each person is a feeling of being himself - in themselves. if i were to be you for a second, i would feel a totally new sensation, a totally new mood and texture of reality for that second.

    Right, that's why it's important to examine reality in ways that can confirm what is actually part of the shared reality and what is not. The best tool we have so far for that is science. Angels and miracles don't seem to fall into what is there, and therefore they are not real, and they cannot be real for some people and not for others per my definition of real. If you believe in a subjective reality, then sure.
    that's a normative statement. what you think is important, i.e. your "should" may not be someone else's "should"
    You don't agree? Why not?
    Balrog99 said:

    bob_veng said:

    bob_veng said:

    i think we do, but we can't know each other's total sensation of what it's like to be alive. if we were to feel being someone else briefly, and return to our consciousness, we woul feel someting very familiar, some general grounding element of being in a shared material world, but also something very, VERY unfamiliar and other . i think we don't appreciate enough how other people, everyone, experiences life differently from us, how their experience is qualitatively different, and probably more varied than we can imagine.
    basically i think everyone has a general mood of being themselves even if they don't know it and think that being, for example, happy or sad connects them with other people more substantially then these states are a part of an undivided continuum that is still completely distinct from other continuums. each person is a feeling of being himself - in themselves. if i were to be you for a second, i would feel a totally new sensation, a totally new mood and texture of reality for that second.

    Right, that's why it's important to examine reality in ways that can confirm what is actually part of the shared reality and what is not. The best tool we have so far for that is science. Angels and miracles don't seem to fall into what is there, and therefore they are not real, and they cannot be real for some people and not for others per my definition of real. If you believe in a subjective reality, then sure.
    that's a normative statement. what you think is important, i.e. your "should" may not be someone else's "should"


    What if some people are more sensitive to the spiritual realm? Their reality may not even be close to your reality or mine. We're hypothetically talking about alternate planes of existence here so no individual's reality can be defined as 'real'.
    I haven't seen any compelling evidence to suggest there is a spiritual realm.
    The whole point of a spiritual realm is that it's spiritual and can't be comprehended by the normal human senses. Your not believing in it doesn't make it any less 'real', nor does any person's belief in it make it any more 'real'. I take the view that I don't know one way or the other and I'm fine with that. I would never say for certain there is or isn't a spiritual plane because I'm not in any position to know. Also, the older I get, the less I care one way the other, either...
    Right, I don't know either, but given there is no evidence the only rational thing is to not believe. Just like I don't believe in unicorns or fairies until someone can demonstrate their existence.

    I had a shower thought: what if we invented a time machine or some other method to conclusively show your religion is a fabrication. Would that affect your belief? How and why (not)?
    That depends on what you mean by evidence. Religious people would say the evidence is all around you but you lack the spiritual awareness to see it. Trust me, you'll never beat religion with logic.

    FinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    Balrog99 said:

    Balrog99 said:

    bob_veng said:

    bob_veng said:

    i think we do, but we can't know each other's total sensation of what it's like to be alive. if we were to feel being someone else briefly, and return to our consciousness, we woul feel someting very familiar, some general grounding element of being in a shared material world, but also something very, VERY unfamiliar and other . i think we don't appreciate enough how other people, everyone, experiences life differently from us, how their experience is qualitatively different, and probably more varied than we can imagine.
    basically i think everyone has a general mood of being themselves even if they don't know it and think that being, for example, happy or sad connects them with other people more substantially then these states are a part of an undivided continuum that is still completely distinct from other continuums. each person is a feeling of being himself - in themselves. if i were to be you for a second, i would feel a totally new sensation, a totally new mood and texture of reality for that second.

    Right, that's why it's important to examine reality in ways that can confirm what is actually part of the shared reality and what is not. The best tool we have so far for that is science. Angels and miracles don't seem to fall into what is there, and therefore they are not real, and they cannot be real for some people and not for others per my definition of real. If you believe in a subjective reality, then sure.
    that's a normative statement. what you think is important, i.e. your "should" may not be someone else's "should"
    You don't agree? Why not?
    Balrog99 said:

    bob_veng said:

    bob_veng said:

    i think we do, but we can't know each other's total sensation of what it's like to be alive. if we were to feel being someone else briefly, and return to our consciousness, we woul feel someting very familiar, some general grounding element of being in a shared material world, but also something very, VERY unfamiliar and other . i think we don't appreciate enough how other people, everyone, experiences life differently from us, how their experience is qualitatively different, and probably more varied than we can imagine.
    basically i think everyone has a general mood of being themselves even if they don't know it and think that being, for example, happy or sad connects them with other people more substantially then these states are a part of an undivided continuum that is still completely distinct from other continuums. each person is a feeling of being himself - in themselves. if i were to be you for a second, i would feel a totally new sensation, a totally new mood and texture of reality for that second.

    Right, that's why it's important to examine reality in ways that can confirm what is actually part of the shared reality and what is not. The best tool we have so far for that is science. Angels and miracles don't seem to fall into what is there, and therefore they are not real, and they cannot be real for some people and not for others per my definition of real. If you believe in a subjective reality, then sure.
    that's a normative statement. what you think is important, i.e. your "should" may not be someone else's "should"


    What if some people are more sensitive to the spiritual realm? Their reality may not even be close to your reality or mine. We're hypothetically talking about alternate planes of existence here so no individual's reality can be defined as 'real'.
    I haven't seen any compelling evidence to suggest there is a spiritual realm.
    The whole point of a spiritual realm is that it's spiritual and can't be comprehended by the normal human senses. Your not believing in it doesn't make it any less 'real', nor does any person's belief in it make it any more 'real'. I take the view that I don't know one way or the other and I'm fine with that. I would never say for certain there is or isn't a spiritual plane because I'm not in any position to know. Also, the older I get, the less I care one way the other, either...
    Right, I don't know either, but given there is no evidence the only rational thing is to not believe. Just like I don't believe in unicorns or fairies until someone can demonstrate their existence.

    I had a shower thought: what if we invented a time machine or some other method to conclusively show your religion is a fabrication. Would that affect your belief? How and why (not)?
    That depends on what you mean by evidence. Religious people would say the evidence is all around you but you lack the spiritual awareness to see it. Trust me, you'll never beat religion with logic.
    They may say that, but until they can demonstrate their evidence it doesn't matter.

    O_Bruce
  • GrammarsaladGrammarsalad Member Posts: 2,488
    edited October 2018
    fluke13 said:

    One thing I learnt back in school - philosophy of religion (which seems relevent to the last couple of pages)...

    Someone came up with the proposition that "only statements that are empirically verifiable (i.e. verifiable through the senses) are cognitively meaningful, or else they are truths of logic (tautologies)."

    Therefore it was argued that all talk about God, life after death or spirituality was meaningless.

    A lot of people agreed for a while, until someone pointed out that the original statement (in quotes above) can't be empirically verified either :)

    Logical empiricism:

    https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/logical-empiricism/

    AJ Ayer's language, truth and logic:

    https://www.amazon.com/Language-Truth-Logic-Western-Philosophy-ebook/dp/B008TVDBY4

    Free pdf of b Russell's the Philosophy of logical Atomism:

    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://sites.ualberta.ca/~francisp/NewPhil448/RussellPhilLogicalAtomismPears.pdf&ved=2ahUKEwjiy9PznYXeAhVPhOAKHauDDYsQFjAAegQICRAB&usg=AOvVaw1l3J6TTPOAH77_oGSUGdAh

    Quines critique:

    http://www.ditext.com/quine/quine.html

    Phil of religion overview:

    https://www.iep.utm.edu/religion/

    An outline of a clear eyed Christianity:

    https://www.amazon.com/Problem-Evil-God-ebook/dp/B000SB9FU2/ref=mp_s_a_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1539496392&sr=8-5&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_FMwebp_QL65&keywords=the+problem+of+evil+and+the+problem+of+God

    An excellent book on the relation of ethics and atheism:

    https://www.amazon.com/Value-Virtue-Godless-Universe-Wielenberg/dp/0521607841/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1539496457&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_FMwebp_QL65&keywords=value+and+virtue+in+a+godless+universe

    Mythos vs logos:

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/commentisfree/belief/2009/jul/12/religion-christianity-belief-science

    Post edited by Grammarsalad on
    FinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    @Grammarsalad I would much prefer your own words to a bibliography. We all have Google ;)

    Grammarsalad
  • GrammarsaladGrammarsalad Member Posts: 2,488
    Well, there is a lot to say about logical positivism and empiricism, and philosophy of religion in general. Okay, this is not going to be short, not will it cover every relevant issue...here goes

    There was once a time, not so long ago, where logical positivism ruled the world, so to speak. (it's in some ways better to call it logical empiricism as the set of views I'm talking about were not limited to the members of the Vienna circle, but I think it's fine to use the terms interchangeably).

    This...paradigm, if we can call it that, also infected the sciences, most especially psychology in the form of behaviorism. Logical positivism was a particular kind of anti-metaphysics, which can be traced back to Kant, and what can be called the 'embarrassment of metaphysics': compared to the sciences, metaphysics never seems to 'go anywhere'.

    While physics-- in Kant's time, it's its Newtonian incarnation--keeps progressing, asking and answering questions in a more or less conclusive manner, metaphysics was still struggling with the same questions of antiquity. (while adding questions along the way, like, does God exist.) Indeed, 'progress' in philosophy seemed instead to be regressive; philosophising only seemed to 'problematize' issues thought resolved.

    For example, the problem of induction, outlined by Hume. I'm going to take a break from the larger narrative to talk at length about the problem of induction because it's relevant (though it may not seem to be, at first). Uhh, I'm going to have to talk a bit about deductive validity, as well. Yeah, this is going to be a long post.

    We take causation for granted, but what makes it rational (in principle) to ever believe that a causes b? As Hume presents it, there are two ways--a priori and a posteriori--that we can come to know that any proposition is true depending on the nature of the proposition itself: matters of fact vs relations of ideas.

    Knowledge of a relation of ideas is gained a priori--i.e. by ' thinking about it carefully'--and we gain such knowledge by thinking about how we define our terms and applying a deductive apparatus to those terms. The application of a deductive apparatus--as it is understood now, which is different from how Hume understood it in that it has become more formalized since his day, though he grasped these ideas intuitively--involves uncovering 'hidden' disambiguated propositions and ' translating' them into logical notation where you can apply a set of rules to that proposition to test for validity. What that means in essence, once you have applied those rules to your disambiguated proposition, you can tell, of a set of propositions x, whether some proposition y is either ' contained' in x or is ' identical' to x. Y is contained in x if it is impossible that in ANY instance where all members of x are true, it is ' impossible' that y is false. I highlight the word "any" because validity is absolute like mathematical equation (e.g. in geometry where you take ANY triangle--doesn't matter if it is a right triangle or not, if it's big, small, etc) and prove that all angles must add up to 180 degrees). A classic example is the term bachelor. A bachelor is defined as a male that is unmarried [disambiguated, we then must specify each property separately--i.e. (Ux & Mx)]. Let's assume that there is some existent x and x is a bachelor (Ex)(Ux & Mx)-- The Ex--btw, the "E" should be backwards, but I don't have the character on my phone-- just says that there is some existent x that has these properties (of being unmarried and being married). Note that we are Just assuming that (Ex)(Ux & Mx) is true in order to determine if our conclusion could be false--in logic, we are not at all concerned whether or not the statement is Actually true-- this is really important and I'll being it up again later. Let's say that our conclusion is that x is unmarried (Ex)(Ux). It should be clear that our argument is valid intuitively-- that is that there is no x that is a bachelor that is not unmarried. Notice-- very important-- that deduction has an air of "necessity"-- necessarily, if your premise(s) are true, then, necessarily, your conclusion is true

    Okay, deductive validity is uninformative in that it doesn't tell you anything new-- again, the conclusion is contained or identical in the premise(s)--and it certainly doesn't give you information about how the world works. This is where I again bring up the fact that (Ex)(Ux & Mx) is just an assumption. We don't know that there is any existent x that is a bachelor, and further the fact that, for any x, if x is a bachelor, then x is unmarried doesn't tell you anything new or interesting about x.

    Knowledge of facts, for Hume, is gained by observation and by making inductive inferences based on those observations For example, we cannot deduce that all bachelors are happy (Hx) because the property of happiness(Hx) is not defined as being part of what it is to be a bachelor (Ux & Mx). Rather, in order to conclude that bachelors are happy, we need to observe actual bachelors and determine if they are happy--we have to observe enough bachelors, and if we observe them to be happy, we make a broad generalization that bachelors are happy.

    This is how science works--er, for Hume. Importantly, the notion of necessity does not apply to matters of fact. That is, because happiness is not defined as being part of bachelorhood, it can never be certain that if x is a bachelor that x is happy.

    But, this seems to present a problem to the rationality of all of the sciences (among other things.) Hume might ask, how could we ever rationally make such a determination (i.e. that bachelors are happy?) Even if every bachelor we have ever met is happy, how could we know that it is impossible that the next bachelor we meet will be happy? Seemingly, we can't.

    But the real problem arises when we turn our attention to causation (which is at the heart of the sciences). Given the above ways of knowing, how can we ever rationally suppose that x causes y?

    The notion of causation is not one of containment. If being hit by a baseball bat in the arm has caused my arm to break, the property of x having a broken arm is not identical to or contained in the preposition x was hit by a baseball bat in the arm. Also, further disqualifying a priori knowledge-- for Hume-- it is informative to know that being hit in the arm is the cause of my broken arm-- just ask any lawyer.

    Okay, so maybe we can know that x causes y via induction (i.e. by making an inference based on observation). Say we hit as many people in the arm with a baseball bat as we please, and let's say further that in each case, that person breaks their arm. Do we have enough to make a causal inference? Well, importantly, we haven't actually Observed a causal relation. Rather, we have only observed a succession of events, which is not a causal relation.

    Hume doesn't make this distinction--in fact, at times he seems to confuse causation for directional and prefect correlation, which isn't the same thing-- but it's helpful to his point to Note the difference between causation and correlation. Correlation represents the magnitude and direction of cooccurrence of two variables. This is distinct from a causal relationship which we can hopefully clarify with a few examples.

    A common example you might find in any statistics textbook is the relationship between murder rates and ice cream sales. These two variables are highly positively correlated meaning that when murder rates increase, so do ice cream sales and when ice cream sales decrease, so does the murder rate. But, of course, just because these two variables change together does not mean that one causes the other (the standard explanation, iirc, is that average temperature likely has an impact on both). Another example: in a lightning storm, a flash of light is always observed just before a thunderous bang. But, this perfect directional correlation does not mean that the flash causes the bang. Rather, an interaction of positively and negatively charged particles cause both the flash and the bang (and it just so happens that light moves faster than sound).

    Causal relationships are what we could call 'unobservable'. When x causes y, the occurrence of x (given certain conditions c) necessitates y. There is no observation of a 'necessary relationship' between x and y. Remember, necessity is a matter of relations of ideas/definitions, not matters of fact.

    Rather, when we observe a succession of events x and y, what changes is our subjective certainty that there is a causal relationship between x and y. But, subjective certainty is not a rational basis for a belief--e.g. somebody can be absolutely certain that God exists, and yet still be wrong. Subjective certainty is not evidence of anything at all (except, of course, one's own attitudes ).

    So, on the one hand, metaphysics was lagging behind the sciences, but on the other hand, the lack of progress in metaphysics seemed to undermine the rationality of the sciences. This is the state of affairs that Kant inherited-- he was concerned about both issues and more as he was both a philosopher and a physicist-- you could do that in those days.


    Okay, I've got to take a break. This story isn't even half told-- it will get to philosophy of religion at some point. But, I'm curious if this make senses so far...does it?

    FinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    @Grammarsalad If you're going to continue perhaps I shouldn't break it down yet, but I don't agree with your description of science. Also, I meant I would like hear what you think about these concepts, I didn't mean please explain them to me. I don't mind of course.

  • fluke13fluke13 Member Posts: 325
    I had a shower thought: what if we invented a time machine or some other method to conclusively show your religion is a fabrication. Would that affect your belief? How and why (not)?



    That reminds me of another one of the Philosophy of religions arguments, known as the "death of 1000 qualifications"... basically it involves a garden and the religious person says an invisible, powerful being tends the garden. The sceptic keeps bringing new evidence, higher walls, motion detecters...you name it, to prove the religious person wrong, but each time, the religious person creates more and more qualifications to justify that the new evidence can't prove him wrong.


    Back in school, I was the typical mix of: brought up "Christian"/ agnostic / never really thought about it beyond death is seriously scary. I would describe myself as spiritual now (which is a little misleading, as it means so many things to different people), but in terms of qualifications, I don't see that argument really working for me. I look at the world, universe, nature and I see intelligence, creation, not random. The more we learn about science, the more intelligence I see (such as flowers deliberately changing colours to please a new insect in the area). Im not a theist (which means God intervenes), but a deist (doesn't believe in intervention) - I see miracles every day, from birth to unconditional selflessness.


    If you went back in time and "proved" something - you could easily annoy many so-called religious people who cling to facts, did Jesus physically resurrect while still alive? did Moses really part the water? did Mohammad really say this, or mean that? … but I would say there is truth in all the religions and going back in the past, would only reveal what we already know now … that truth and love make you feel content, that if you believe you're part of the universe and not just a body, then "you" (the 'you' you believe yourself to be) will live forever (eternal life). I often agree more with athiests than many religious people - I think the atheist has taken the right first step - to question everything - but then I believe the atheist has stopped short of the answer - when they should really keep looking. They say truth is subjective, but if you are fully content with your life, you feel at peace, you don't let things around you make you too angry or too sad (you feel emotion, but you let the world be, focusing on change through yourself, not through changing others) - for me, that is the truth.

    FinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    edited October 2018
    @fluke13 Interesting thoughts, thank you.
    fluke13 said:

    I had a shower thought: what if we invented a time machine or some other method to conclusively show your religion is a fabrication. Would that affect your belief? How and why (not)?


    That reminds me of another one of the Philosophy of religions arguments, known as the "death of 1000 qualifications"... basically it involves a garden and the religious person says an invisible, powerful being tends the garden. The sceptic keeps bringing new evidence, higher walls, motion detecters...you name it, to prove the religious person wrong, but each time, the religious person creates more and more qualifications to justify that the new evidence can't prove him wrong.
    That's a really bad skeptic. If the religious person says "an invisible, powerful being tends the garden" the burden of proof is on him. The skeptic should be saying "I don't believe you, show me the evidence", not trying to prove him wrong.
    fluke13 said:


    Back in school, I was the typical mix of: brought up "Christian"/ agnostic / never really thought about it beyond death is seriously scary. I would describe myself as spiritual now (which is a little misleading, as it means so many things to different people), but in terms of qualifications, I don't see that argument really working for me. I look at the world, universe, nature and I see intelligence, creation, not random. The more we learn about science, the more intelligence I see (such as flowers deliberately changing colours to please a new insect in the area). Im not a theist (which means God intervenes), but a deist (doesn't believe in intervention) - I see miracles every day, from birth to unconditional selflessness.

    Right, so what do you mean by spiritual? And what do you mean by miracles? If you're a deist, then your god isn't doing miracles, right?
    fluke13 said:


    If you went back in time and "proved" something - you could easily annoy many so-called religious people who cling to facts, did Jesus physically resurrect while still alive? did Moses really part the water? did Mohammad really say this, or mean that? … but I would say there is truth in all the religions and going back in the past, would only reveal what we already know now … that truth and love make you feel content, that if you believe you're part of the universe and not just a body, then "you" (the 'you' you believe yourself to be) will live forever (eternal life). I often agree more with athiests than many religious people - I think the atheist has taken the right first step - to question everything - but then I believe the atheist has stopped short of the answer - when they should really keep looking. They say truth is subjective, but if you are fully content with your life, you feel at peace, you don't let things around you make you too angry or too sad (you feel emotion, but you let the world be, focusing on change through yourself, not through changing others) - for me, that is the truth.

    Why do you say there is truth in all the religions? What do you think the truth is people are stopping short of? How did you come by this truth?

    fluke13
  • GrammarsaladGrammarsalad Member Posts: 2,488

    @Grammarsalad If you're going to continue perhaps I shouldn't break it down yet, but I don't agree with your description of science. Also, I meant I would like hear what you think about these concepts, I didn't mean please explain them to me. I don't mind of course.

    Oh boy, what do I think? Well, I think that Kant was largely correct, though to say what that means would require another post a least as long as the previous. Indeed, I would need to go into more detail about Hume, and I would need to bring in Descartes and Leibniz, and maybe Newton as well. Kant gets really weird, but he makes more sense in contrast to these guys. Let's see if I can shorten the description.

    Logical positivism is in many ways a reaction to Kant, a kind of "back to Hume" movement. It is the philosophical foundation of scientism today, the notion that all questions worth asking are answerable through scientific investigation. It is also where we get the argument that fluke brought up above, which is Ignosticism, which is not to be confused with agnosticism. The main problems that I have with positivism is both The rejection of synthetic a priori knowledge and its conventionalism (which follows from The rejection of synthetic a priori)...

    Verificationism is Humean epistemology applied to meaning. It claims that only inn observationally verifiable statements or analytic statements-- which again are true by definition and tell you nothing about the world--are meaningful (with regards to propositional statements). This means that statements like 1+1=2 are equivalent to statements like if it's a widow, then it's a woman-- sure, it's true by definition but it tells us nothing informative about the world This seems fine until we turn our attention to geometry (and statistics, and calculus, etc. which are absolutely essential for scientific modeling, prediction, hypothesis testing, etc.) with do purport to tell us something a priori about how the world works.

    Early Wittgenstein asserted, more in line with Locke than Hume, that the language and world are structurally identical. What that means is that it is possible to represent the world as it Really is, which means that the laws of mathematics and logic actually apply to the real world, etc. This is inherently problematic, as Wittgy understood even then, because there is no ' stepping outside' of the process of representation and observation/hypothesis testing in order to compare it to reality unmitigated by the representative process. You just have to recognize that this is what is going on and stop thinking about it, maybe go fishing. Basically, these questions need to stop annoying him so he can live in peace. He was one of the world's most brilliant logicians, but he was also a bit unhinged...

    Anyway, the problem with this formulation, for the positivists, was that it involves synthetic a priori knowledge. I don't think I've really defined what that means. Basically, the idea is that mathematics and perhaps other kinds of reasoning--I would put reasoning by natural selection in this category--differs from a mere rearrangement of definitions in that it Can tell us something informative about the world. That is unlike with bachelors and widows, geometry (e.g.) tells us something informative about space without need for observation/evidence.

    Now, the positivists have a point in rejecting this aspect of the Tractatus. Wittgenstein asserts that language mirrors the world, but he does not give any arguments-- we are just expected to recognize this mirroring-in- process and take it as self evident. But, of course, we can ask the Humean question: why must we believe that the world exactly mirrors representation? Even if it has worked out fine until now, how do we know that it'll continue to work out tomorrow, or even in 5 seconds from now? All we seemingly have to base our certainty is just that: our a Subjective certainty, and that is no basis for knowledge. Now, unlike Wittgenstein, Kant argued at length that representation is structurally identical to the world but I'm not going to get into that because 1: it would take forever to outline the basic points of the argument and 2: you really won't like it ( despite the fact that it underlies our contemporary scientific understanding of perception and concept formulation and application).

    Anyway, the positivists did not like the Kantian solution or the Wittgy solution and so the only recourse was to go back to Hume. But, what this entails is that geometry tells us nothing about the world, that 1+1=2 only because we have defined it That way. Because mathematics underlies science, then, all science is is an arrangement of definitions 'pushed around' by observation. As such, even science tells us nothing informative about the world. (it took a bit to realize this implication, but it was this realization That lead to the downfall of positivism, which turned out to be a kind of dogmatic skepticism in denial).

    FinneousPJ
  • Dev6Dev6 Member Posts: 697
    edited October 2018
    Today I read the following on reddit:
    Reddit said:

    "There's two kinds of Christians that read the Bible: theologians and atheists."

    FinneousPJ
  • LadyRhianLadyRhian Member Posts: 14,694
    Dev6 said:

    Today I read the following on reddit:

    Reddit said:

    "There's two kinds of Christians that read the Bible: theologians and atheists."

    I agree with that. I've won arguments with Christians about what is and is not in the Bible.

    Dev6FinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    Dev6 said:

    Today I read the following on reddit:

    Reddit said:

    "There's two kinds of Christians that read the Bible: theologians and atheists."

    Surely they mean two kinds of people.

  • LadyRhianLadyRhian Member Posts: 14,694
    Well, no. Some say the best way to make an atheist out of a Christian is to make them read the entire Bible.

    Dev6BelgarathMTHFinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    LadyRhian said:

    Well, no. Some say the best way to make an atheist out of a Christian is to make them read the entire Bible.

    Right, at which point they are unlikely to identify as christian.

  • Dev6Dev6 Member Posts: 697

    Dev6 said:

    Today I read the following on reddit:

    Reddit said:

    "There's two kinds of Christians that read the Bible: theologians and atheists."

    Surely they mean two kinds of people.
    They did mean two kinds of christians, you're just overthinking it. :tongue:

    Also, completely unrelated, I just discovered we have a :trollface: smiley WOOHOO

    FinneousPJ
  • fluke13fluke13 Member Posts: 325
    @FinneousPJ

    I don't have time at the moment for a more in depth response, but a few quick answers on what you asked... (Edit - looks like I wrote more than I first intended heh)

    I tried to summarise the 'death of a 1000 qualifications' very quickly, so my wording may be a little off, but if it's of interest, it's better described in the wiki Parable of the invisible gardener https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parable_of_the_Invisible_Gardener

    My own definition of spiritual - would focus on the word 'spirit' - believing that we (our self or humanity as a whole) are more than simply flesh and blood, that we share a spirit/life force/intelligence with each other and with the world - that while our brains, experiences, memories shape our personalities, our spirit allows us to step outside of the normal cause/effect, pain/pleasure cycle, so long as we are aware of it.

    Going by the theist/ deist difference of intervention, I would say that for a theist a miracle could be a direct intervention - like a dead person coming to life, whereas the miracles I believe in are part of the natural order we see, that require no direct intervention. Life on earth is miraculous, someone lieing on their death bed and thinking only about the sadness of others - those our miracles I've witnessed.

    Saying there is truth in all religions might be a bit of a stretch, afterall I haven't read everything. But taking each religion at their core - for example Christian means Christ-like or the desire to live in accordance with Jesus/Yeshua. If you take that definition, it opens up much more flexibility, allowing for different interpretation and less reliance on just the bible for example. Taking Christianity as one example, I believe the gospels that weren't included in the Bible shed much greater light on the truth and act as a key in effect to understand much of the Bible's contents/true meaning. Of course it's not necessary to spend so much time analysing religious texts, new translations, alternative meanings etc. - it's become a bit of a cliché, but you really do just need love.

    Everyone is different, including athiests of course, so each person could be missing all sorts of different things. If I think of my grandmother - she had very bad experiences with religious institutions and believes mankind invented religion to make sense of the sky, earth, water etc.... she stops there, assuming there is nothing more to know. If she hears a word like God, Jesus, religion, she stops listening - if you said Life, Truth, opinion instead, then she agrees with most things. I'd never say anyone is wrong and Im right, it's simply a case of knowing your own life and being honest about whether you're truly happy or whether you need to resolve anything that's bringing you down. I'd say spirituality is one step above just being happy, it's a belief that it's possible to be blissfully content always, regardless of events around you.

    How did I come by this... well, I spent a great deal of my life studying too much, working too many hours, for money I didn't have time to spend. When I lost of my sister, I sort of woke up, not to spirituality but to just how ridiculous my life was... I crashed and hit rock bottom. Eventually I couldn't take any more pain and my first thoughts were about people who were apparently pain/fear free... religious and historically reknown figures - I did a huge amount of research, I questioned everything, I looked for patterns of things all these people agreed on. I then realised I was reading too much, delving too deep and I just needed to live it, not learn about it. Now I look back and can truthfully say Im far happier. Not only that, but now my happiness is built on a solid foundation, it comes from within and doesn't rely wholly on who or what happens around me.

    FinneousPJ
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    @Grammarsalad I still don't know what you think... do you subscribe to a sort of Kantian Idealism?
    fluke13 said:

    @FinneousPJ

    I don't have time at the moment for a more in depth response, but a few quick answers on what you asked... (Edit - looks like I wrote more than I first intended heh)

    I tried to summarise the 'death of a 1000 qualifications' very quickly, so my wording may be a little off, but if it's of interest, it's better described in the wiki Parable of the invisible gardener https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parable_of_the_Invisible_Gardener

    I like the last statement

    "But what remains of your original assertion? Just how does what you call an invisible, intangible, eternally elusive gardener differ from an imaginary gardener or even from no gardener at all?"

    But still, I think the skeptic of the parable is a bad skeptic jumping straight to the assertion "There is no gardener." A better approach would be "I don't believe there is a gardener in the absence of evidence."
    fluke13 said:

    My own definition of spiritual - would focus on the word 'spirit' - believing that we (our self or humanity as a whole) are more than simply flesh and blood, that we share a spirit/life force/intelligence with each other and with the world - that while our brains, experiences, memories shape our personalities, our spirit allows us to step outside of the normal cause/effect, pain/pleasure cycle, so long as we are aware of it.

    So if there were no such thing as a 'spirit', how would the world look different?
    fluke13 said:

    Going by the theist/ deist difference of intervention, I would say that for a theist a miracle could be a direct intervention - like a dead person coming to life, whereas the miracles I believe in are part of the natural order we see, that require no direct intervention. Life on earth is miraculous, someone lieing on their death bed and thinking only about the sadness of others - those our miracles I've witnessed.

    So miracles to you are no different from natural phenomenon? What makes them miracles in that case?
    fluke13 said:

    Saying there is truth in all religions might be a bit of a stretch, afterall I haven't read everything. But taking each religion at their core - for example Christian means Christ-like or the desire to live in accordance with Jesus/Yeshua. If you take that definition, it opens up much more flexibility, allowing for different interpretation and less reliance on just the bible for example. Taking Christianity as one example, I believe the gospels that weren't included in the Bible shed much greater light on the truth and act as a key in effect to understand much of the Bible's contents/true meaning. Of course it's not necessary to spend so much time analysing religious texts, new translations, alternative meanings etc. - it's become a bit of a cliché, but you really do just need love.

    Without the bible how do you know what Christ-like means? Hell, how do you know even with the bible? If you just need love, why do you need religion? There is a whole lot of baggage with religions, and none of the religious texts I've read only preach loving.
    fluke13 said:

    Everyone is different, including athiests of course, so each person could be missing all sorts of different things. If I think of my grandmother - she had very bad experiences with religious institutions and believes mankind invented religion to make sense of the sky, earth, water etc.... she stops there, assuming there is nothing more to know. If she hears a word like God, Jesus, religion, she stops listening - if you said Life, Truth, opinion instead, then she agrees with most things. I'd never say anyone is wrong and Im right, it's simply a case of knowing your own life and being honest about whether you're truly happy or whether you need to resolve anything that's bringing you down. I'd say spirituality is one step above just being happy, it's a belief that it's possible to be blissfully content always, regardless of events around you.

    How did I come by this... well, I spent a great deal of my life studying too much, working too many hours, for money I didn't have time to spend. When I lost of my sister, I sort of woke up, not to spirituality but to just how ridiculous my life was... I crashed and hit rock bottom. Eventually I couldn't take any more pain and my first thoughts were about people who were apparently pain/fear free... religious and historically reknown figures - I did a huge amount of research, I questioned everything, I looked for patterns of things all these people agreed on. I then realised I was reading too much, delving too deep and I just needed to live it, not learn about it. Now I look back and can truthfully say Im far happier. Not only that, but now my happiness is built on a solid foundation, it comes from within and doesn't rely wholly on who or what happens around me.

    I see. My question was more along the lines of what made you conclude what you found is actually true? Or perhaps you and I have a different understanding of truth. What do you mean when you say this is the (or a) truth?

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    New talk by Seth Andrews

    Zaghoul
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,560
    @Son_of_Imoen Considering that the Catholic church was literally founded around exploiting people for profit and political power, I wouldn't expect much.

  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 13,620
    ThacoBell said:

    @Son_of_Imoen Considering that the Catholic church was literally founded around exploiting people for profit and political power, I wouldn't expect much.

    I'm reasonably certain that's not the original purpose of the Catholic Church when it started developing just under 2,000 years ago, especially since it did not become the official Roman religion until 380 CE and Christians spent much of the previous centuries suffering from violent persecution from the political powers that were. I am aware of no evidence that Saint Peter or Pope Linus were rich or powerful people at any point in their lives.

    Incidentally, we have a thread dedicated to religion already, so we should avoid dragging this discussion off-topic.

    StummvonBordwehrFinneousPJBalrog99
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,560
    Peter as in one of the Apostles? Who has absolutely nothing to do with Catholicism? Or is there another Peter that the Catholic church venerates? Its telling that everything that sets the Catholic church apart from Christianity is is either not in thr Bible at all, or flat out CONTRADICTS Jesus' teaching. Whoops.

  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 13,620
    @ThacoBell: If you want to pin down where exactly Catholicism really began or what Christianity really teaches, please do so in the religion thread.

    FinneousPJ
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,560
    @semiticgod I was merely responding to your comment.

  • semiticgodsemiticgod Member, Moderator Posts: 13,620
    @ThacoBell: Which was a response to you, which was a response to me, which was a response to you, beginning here:
    ThacoBell said:

    @Son_of_Imoen Considering that the Catholic church was literally founded around exploiting people for profit and political power, I wouldn't expect much.

    I'm moving these posts to the religion thread.

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456

    @ThacoBell: If you want to pin down where exactly Catholicism really began or what Christianity really teaches, please do so in the religion thread.

    That raises an interesting point. How does one decide whose doctrine is correct? How does know what Jesus really taught, if anything?

  • ArtonaArtona Member Posts: 1,044
    edited December 2018
    I am a simple guy - I think no god exist, because I know no statement that I hold true or necessary, that would require existence of god to be true.

    FinneousPJ
  • JLeeJLee Member Posts: 648
    edited December 2018

    @ThacoBell: If you want to pin down where exactly Catholicism really began or what Christianity really teaches, please do so in the religion thread.

    That raises an interesting point. How does one decide whose doctrine is correct? How does know what Jesus really taught, if anything?
    This reminds me of Kabir:
    "The men of old
    Took all they really knew
    With them to the grave.
    And so, Lord, what you are reading there
    Is only the dirt they left behind them.”

    One problem with almost any scripture from any religion is that we rely upon the level of understanding of disciples, theologians, and scholars to transmit the teachings. How much did they really glean from the teachings? How much did their own bias and conceptual framework sneak in to their interpretation, maybe even subconsciously? On top of that add the distortion of translations, metaphors misdiagnosed as histories, politics, etc. and we end up being unable to really know what they originally intended.

    FinneousPJ
This discussion has been closed.