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Dynamo replied...
Jun. 7, 2013 at 6:08 am

Yeah, tsr.

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half.note replied...
Jun. 7, 2013 at 5:39 pm

ht tp://bit.ly/14GEgIF

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Quantum1.0 replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 8:58 am

Can more people please reply to this, so I can ask them how their assumptions lead to their conclusions? And can others do the same for me?
To sweeten the deal for any creationists, I will point out the fact that religion seems to have more (and bigger) assumptions than science is critical to my beliefs. If you can disprove this it could be a major step towards changing or at least seriously reevaluating my position.

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SummerIndigo replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 9:32 am

There are probably more; these are just the ones that come to me off the top of my head.

1. God exists, and created all living things in His likeness. He also created the world, and the materials within it. Therefore, the world exists and is real and physical.

2. Humans have free will.

3. God exists as three parts of one whole (The Trinity).

4. There is so much more to understanding the world than just math and science.

5. Ducks are awesome.

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SummerIndigo replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 9:55 am


1. Which definition of perceive are you going by?
PERCEIVE: (To)Become aware of (something) by the use of one of the senses, esp. that of sight.
PERCEIVE:(To) Become aware or conscious of (something); come to realize or understand.

2. You're an atheist, yes? You believe in evolution and/or the Big Bang? Or something to that effect?

If the world came into being scientifically and mathematically, and works scientifically and mathematically, with no, um, outside help, then why is it so...nice?

Science and math are concrete, one-answer-fits-all ideas. If a world came into being through just these, then why is there so much detailed beauty?

Am I making sense?

Science has proven that some people have 'left' brains and some have 'right' brains. Obviously, we all have both halves of the brain, but everyone leans toward one half or the other, just like with hands (righty or lefty.) Off the top of my head, I think it's the right side of the brain that works more scientifically and the left side of the brain that's more creative. Well, you probably know all this but I'm saying it anyway.
Think about all the beautiful, detaile things we have here on earth...feathers and plants and the human eye! The world we live in seems to me like it was created by an incredibly talented left brain. (Not that I'm saying God has a brain like ours! Just as an example!!!)

Science and math don't have brains.

Does this make sense? Most of my arguments don't.

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Jubilex replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 11:11 am

Dynamo: A bit late to reply. I'd never heard of it before, but I looked it up and it looks very cool. The url is a uk origin though. It's all targeted towards British people.

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Dynamo replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 12:25 pm

Jubilex: Yeah, mostly for uk guys, but people from uae, pakistan, and other countries (even america) are also involved (we have our own pakistan community there)

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Jun. 10, 2013 at 6:16 pm

Stunt: (late response) Do NOT bring up geo. It's a pain to even think about e.e;

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Quantum1.0 replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 6:32 pm

1. I'm using the second because many of our detection methods use instruments and measuring devices other than our own five senses.
2. I'm agnostic. I can't disprove God, so the atheist standpoint seems extreme to me. Rather the fact that I can't disprove God is one of the main reasons I don't believe in Him. I do , however, "believe" (based on the fact that they have been rationally proven beyond reasonable doubt) in evolution and the Big Bang. (I put believe in quotes because this is certainly not a matter of faith for me).
Anyway, as for most of your arguments I don't really know for sure, but none of those things require God.
Take niceness for example. If you think about it the world isn't that nice. Nature is a very competitve "dog eat dog" kind of world and all acts of cooperation and even human morality have a basis in the self-centered realm of evolution (I'll explain this in more detail if you like). 
I will, however, point out that this doesn't make morality and goodness any less valuable or important in my opinion.
Also, science and math are detailed and beautiful. So a world based on this and this alone could easily be the same without God.
Finally, you say it "seems" like it is created. I wouldn't argue with that. But "seems" is not proof and for someone like me who really wants to know how the universe works it is not enough. And from all the measurements and scientific data ever taken there has been no evidence of God.

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Destinee replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 7:56 pm

Okay I really haven't forgotten this thread :) I just need some more time to come up with my complete list. I remember Quantum and stuntddude's objections to my list on the other thread, so God willing I'll get to that soon too :) Maybe next week. 
LOL at "sweetening the deal". 
Okay I'm gonna use a lettering system. Can we please stikc to using it? Otherwise my head starts hurting at how long posts can get.. :)
a) Why aren't "What we perceive is real" and "Only what we perceive is real" two separate assumptions? They are HUGELY diff in my opinion. Most religious people would agree to the first, and not to the second. 
b) Can you give me a precise mathematical law to describe humans? Not the majority, not a statistic (e.g. 93% of people), but a precise mathematical law describing any significant and voluntary action of ours. (by significant I mean, for instance, not choosing to twitch a finger, but something like, actually worth talking about. LOL.) Please also keep in mind that we're talking worldwide, or at least a very very large part of the world, not just like, a village somewhere. LOL.
c) Do you believe in human freedom? (Even if it is limited.) For i) actions; ii) thoughts. 
d) Is it possible for something to exist that we cannot detect? By this I mean both 'current existence' or 'historical existence' (e.g. a historical event that we have not been able to record). 
e) Shouldn't "Facts are things beyond a reasonable doubt" be on your list of assumptions? Or something similar... 
I see what you're getting at :) I remember reading somewhere, and it struck me as quite an extraordinary observation, that the opposite of beauty is not ugliness, but falsehood. Pure religion, I think, is ultimately elegance. 

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stuntddude replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 8:46 pm

1. Disregarding that we have more than five senses, aren't all measuring devices just extensions of our own senses? The light from a telescope ultimately falls into your eyes -- unless we start getting into direct modification of our own brainwaves, isn't all information we take in taken in through our senses?
2. You seem unclear on what atheism is. It doesn't require a person to disprove the existence of any god, it simply requires a (conscious) lack of theism. You may say that you're agnostic about God, but I daresay you wouldn't call yourself an agnostic on the issue of the invisible, ethereal, earwax-thieving elves living under your bed, although the issue is essentially the same -- neither can be disproven.
((I feel like there's some other name you go by but I can't remember what it is))
That's just the thing, the idea of beauty you seem to be adopting here is defunct.
It's not that the universe has played out in such a way that it's beautiful, and in fact I would say there is no such thing as objective beauty -- before animals came around that could percieve beauty, the universe was certainly not a beautiful place, because beauty is necessarily determined by what we conscious creatures think is beautiful. And the universe is, ultimately, uncaring -- it has no mind. So, beauty did not come about for humans to see it.
Instead, humans have evolved to see the universe as beautiful. And there is evidence for this in the simple fact of what it is that we tend to see as beautiful.
If we consider all the things that we think of as beautiful, they're all places where an evolving human would want to be: peaceful scenes (great places to rest up where nothing is out to kill you), shiny objects (i.e. clean objects, as opposed to grimy, unclean things which, as we know, are generally bad for us), or, indeed, the face of a healthy potential mate. ;)
I could go on and on, about all kinds of things we find beautiful, and it's clear they all are things that are beneficial to us humans in some way (if you can think of one that doesn't fit with this, throw it my way and I'll see if I can explain it).
A person who developed a sense of longing for, or enjoyment of, places and things that were beneficial to their survival and reproduction, would be more likely to pass on their genes than a person who didn't, and so over time positive emotions for these things would emerge.
That's why the universe is beautiful -- not because it's made for us, but because we're made for it.
Did I explain that well or does it just make no sense whatsoever? :P

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stuntddude replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 9:44 pm

I know this is directed at Quantum, but I can't help myself stepping in here. I don't claim to speak for him in any way, either. This is all me.
a) I wouldn't even agree to the first. I stick to a much more conservative "we're capable of making accurate observations" because some things we percieve are not real, as with optical illusions. Further, of course there are things we can't percieve that are real -- Most of the universe is made up of things I will never personally percieve. But I have good reason to believe it's there.
b) Yes. In fact, I could give you several. What are you looking for, maybe a bit of Schrodinger's wave equation, maybe the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, or are you looking for something more along the lines of Einstein's general relativity? :P
But really, the problem here is a simple misconception. Action on a very small scale, like that of elementary particles, determines actions on a large scale, like you typing out that post. In fact, the large actions are really just human abstractions for the lots and lots of small actions happening on the scale of elementary particles. Therefore, any law governing the very small scale will also govern the large scale.
The problem isn't that there aren't laws determining these things, it's that we're made up of a lot of particles. Like, a lot. Like, more than you can possibly ever be able to imagine. Think of the largest amount you can honestly imagine (not just a vague concept like infinity, but something where you could actually imagine a space in which there were that many things). Now consider that you didn't even come anywhere close to the number of particles in a human being.
Obviously, no one is ever going to be able to do all the calculations needed to know the exact outcome on large scales. And even if you could, things happen so fast that whatever you were trying to predict would already be long gone.
Now, some things do act somewhat predictable on large scales, for various reasons, but some don't. We can model approximately how an object will fall, for instance -- at 9.8 m/s/s towards the ground, right? But that's not totally accurate. It varies across the surface of the Earth, and with distance away from the surface. So really it's only an approximation, because the underlying quantum laws require far, far too many calculations.
However, I can't tell you what direction the wind will be blowing in 30 minutes, because that's just too large of a system, and it's not the kind that humans are good at understanding. Population mechanics (ironically) is another such system.
You asking for a law that accurately describe humans on a macroscopic scale, but not a microscopic one, is like me asking you for a law that accurately describes the macroscopic trends of the entire internet, without describing what operations are happening at the scale of individual instructions in the processors of any of the computers involved (or even what's happening on a macro scale at each computer).
There's obviously a lot going on, and I can look at exactly how the processor chip executes any single instruction, then I can look at how an if/else statement breaks down into instructions, and then I can look at how even the simplest of programs runs line-by-line of code in an operating system... but by the time I've gotten to looking at even the simplest of programs, I've already lost all hope of being able to keep track of what's going on at the "quantum" level of each operation on the chip.
From there on out, I have to work on approximations -- abstractions -- of what's really happening, and while some parts of the internet are predictable (for instance, the chart of players logged into Steam each hour looks nearly identical every day), other parts are not (for instance, what web video will go viral tomorrow, although some people are sinking a lot of money into figuring that one out).
Obviously, we know the internet does play out by deterministic processes -- each chip acts in a completely predictable way operation-by-operation, but there's just so much going on, the system is just so complicated, that there's no way to realistically model in on a macroscopic level.
It's just the same deal with the universe itself, though obviously on a much, much larger scale, and indeed everything in the universe, including humans.
DAAAANG that was a long post... I'll do the rest separately just to make it seem a little more manageable :P

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SummerIndigo replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 10:42 pm

Stuntdude: I go by SummerIndigo, IridescentIndigo and Indigo.Knows at the moment. It changes. XD

I kinda understand what you're saying: beauty is objective...but I feel like I'm missing something...

You said we're made for the universe. Made by what? Made by who? Who instilled that eye for beauty in humans?

I know.

Destinee: Yes! Someone gets it! XD And that's an interesting thought.

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Quantum1.0 replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 10:55 pm

1. Yeah. I suppose you're right. Still, the use of the word percieve was meant to encompass all sorts of detection.
2. So I looked up the definitions of agnosticism and atheism and I found both my definition and the one you are using.
By your definition I am an atheist. By mine I'm agnostic. Or alternatively from my research I seem to be either a strong agnostic or a weak atheist. Who knows. Sometimes its hard to label beliefs. (Those who are part of the book writing thing, just read my "Does God exist?" essay to see what mine are.) 
a) Fair enough. Those could certainly be seperated.
b) No, because it would be extrordinarily complicated and we probably haven't discovered everything necessary yet. But it is certainly theoretically possible. Science is evolving - so many of these sorts of questions are useless. The answer is we don't know yet. But they don't disprove science as a system at all.
c) As much as I hate to admit it, as it bothers me a little, I make the educated guess (as our knowledge of the brain is quite limited at the moment) that we don't have free will.
d) Theoretically, I'd say no. Practically, yes. Let me look into this a little more and I'll give more details for this claim.
e) No. I don't think so. I'm not claiming they are facts. I am claiming they are probably the facts based within a small range of uncertainty. (What do you think stuntddude? Do you agree with this?)
"remember reading somewhere, and it struck me as quite an extraordinary observation, that the opposite of beauty is not ugliness, but falsehood. Pure religion, I think, is ultimately elegance."
Scientists would say the same about science (or at least hope it is the case). Many scientific theories are described as beautiful and I certainly see them as such.

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Quantum1.0 replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 10:59 pm

b) Ignore my response and read stuntddude's. His is much more in depth.
Good point about the percieving assumption. I guess I should refine my assumption to your version.

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Jade.I.Am replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 11:00 pm

This thread confuses me o.O

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Quantum1.0 replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 11:07 pm

summerindigo: Do you interpret the Bible literally? If not, ignore this, but otherwise:
How from your assumptions do you get to the conclusion that the Bible is the literal, and 100% accurate word of God?

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Destinee replied...
Jun. 10, 2013 at 11:45 pm

I'll reply full later, God willing, but for now Quantum: 
"remember reading somewhere, and it struck me as quite an extraordinary observation, that the opposite of beauty is not ugliness, but falsehood. Pure religion, I think, is ultimately elegance." 
Scientists would say the same about science (or at least hope it is the case). Many scientific theories are described as beautiful and I certainly see them as such.
Yes. I agree :) What SummerIndigo is saying is that the beauty of reality, so much more than a sensual beauty, but the very essence of elegance, and the primeval need and search for it in our surroundings and found in our concepts -- be it in the splendour of a Rembrandt or the majesty of the theory of relativity -- is indicative of something. 
You are absolutely right that God cannot be proved. God, and other supranatural claims, are, by their very definition, beyond the mechanical processes of nature. Similar to human freedom (one of my assumptions, you will recall), some claims are not falsifiable. Morality is another one I put in this category, unless you redefine (and in the act, negate) morality.
You stated before that religion has more initial assumptions than science (by which I assumed you meant scientific materialism, of course?). While I disagree -- I would rank the assumptions about the same #, or less for religion -- I don't think the point is the # of assumptions, but the explanative power of them. If you have something which, in the act of "explaining" things, end up contradicting, negating, or dismissing them, you have not much a worldview at all. 
For instance, Flo's assumption is clearly the least in number. If I have the assumption "Everything I perceive is an illusion", similar to her assumption though perhaps a bit more insane :) this is the ultimate negation of reality. It appears that we evolved -- does that mean we evolved? No, because we can't trust our detection methods. It appears that murder is wrong. Does that mean murder is wrong? No, because morality is false. It appears that the garden is beautiful -- does that mean the garden is beautiful? No, because the garden may not exist and beauty is subjective. If my single assumption is that you are all very extensive aspects of a dreamworld and nothing is real as a result, then it "explains" everything. But it also does away with everything.
Scientific materialism explains the quantitiative extremely well. Extremely. As someone who spends half her life as a scientific materialist (the other half I'm asleep ;) lol jk), it does wonders for explaining 'natural' (in the material sense) phenomena. But to study qualitiative phenomena, for instance beauty, it has to reduce them to quantitiative, and in the very act ignore their significance. No doubt there is a quantitative basis, but is that it? For scientific materialism, there cannot be anything else. There cannot be a reality outside the material and there cannot exist anything that is not falsifiable. For the insane man in the asylum, everyone is a conspiracy theorist. His single assumption of the world being against him can explain every single action. I know someone who had a nervous breakdown, and her paranoia could explain everything. When the nurse told her to take her medicine, she was convinced her ex bf had paid off the nurse to give her medicine and forget how she had been r.aped by him. When her mother showed the doctor papers of her bipolar disorder diagnosis, she was convinced that they had made up the papers. And why not? In a limited sense, the single belief that everyone was against could explain everything -- her boyfriend's worry, her mother's concern, the doctor's analysis. But it was limited and in reality explained nothing. 
You can draw two types of circles on the ground. You can draw a small one, and you can draw a big one. Both are infinite, you can go around both a million times and still never find a way out. But one contains a very small amount of sand, and one contains all the sand and pebbles on the beach. Both have explanative powers, but one explains very little and ignores the rest, and the other explains everything.
Consider the case of a car on a road. You shine your headlights at the road, you see 4 ways around you, and you can go anywhere you please. Must be a very useful thing. You can explore the world with it, right?
Except you can't. You can't go underwater. For that you need a submarine. The car will be useless in those channels, regardless of what a perfect vehicle it is on the ground. 
When you stand under a streetlight, you can only see as far as the streetlight shines. Beyond that is darkness and you can't use the guiding light of the lamp anymore. When you shine a tubelamp into the sky, the lamp will illuminate an aeroplane flying through its field of view. It won't capture the aeroplane when it is anywhere else. Even if the light pierces into the depth of the sky vertically, if it can see every single aeroplane flying into its field of view... if there are a million aeroplanes flying outside of its field of view, it will never detect them.
You can tell me how I see the colour red, you can tell me its wavelength, you can tell me the precise mechanisms which allow me to perceive red, the shape of the eye, the cornea, the retine, the optics behind it all.. but a blind man will never know red the way I do. Experience adds to our understanding and there is an essence of things that is beyond rationality. It is experienced. Science should explain the rational aspect -- the eye, the wavelength, the optic nerve -- but respect where it cannot cross. Until a blind man can see, he will never know red fully. No matter how many textbooks you give him on the subject. 

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Jade.I.Am replied...
Jun. 11, 2013 at 1:24 am


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Dynamo replied...
Jun. 11, 2013 at 5:02 am

I am just as confused as Jade. We wandered from assumptions to beauty, and then to a novel-length posting contest. o.O

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