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Old 03-29-2017, 01:27 PM   #126
dynamite22
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Re: Religion and logic

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Originally Posted by Aaron W. View Post
You seem to have circled back to what I was saying while trying your hardest not to admit error.

First, I affirm the use of wrong rather than irrational.



Second, I question whether there's actually any "bending" of definitions.
I would argue that in any reasonable scenario (no pun intended) by which rational thinking proceeds in a human brain critical thinking and weighing of evidence are involved. For YEC this implies the person has come to the conclusion that the old testament is the literal and/or inspired word of the creator of the universe and that this overrides other sources of evidence. This is done in spite of the fact that all 'worldly' evidence we have discovered via the scientific method points to a different conclusion. The evidence is heavily on the opposite side, how could they reach their conclusion rationally without recourse to circular reasoning?

This is a stronger notion of rationality than the one you seem to prefer (non-self-contradiction). I grant you that on this notion you can believe prety much anything you want.





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Third, from your perspective, you should be concerned about the phrasing "absolute truth" when combining it with your scientism perspective. By most conceptions of science, "absolute truth" isn't actually a desired goal or outcome.
We can never know everything about the universe or its origins or its most fundamental constituent parts. Depiending on how you would define absolute truth I may disagree with the latter part of your paragraph for several scientific disciplines (chemistry, biology, geography, etc).

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Lastly, it's a simple intellectual exercise to think through your last sentence and realize that "interference" with those measurements isn't actually necessary. If you believe in a purely naturalistic universe (one that progresses only by natural laws), you cannot deny the possibility that the universe was created only a couple seconds ago, and that the initial conditions are such that you believe the universe is very old.
The amount of order we observe around us makes this overwhelmingly improbable not just for a couple seconds ago but for milennia as well.

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If you're going to take scientism as your philosophical outlook on knowledge, you will need to scale back the certitude of your statements about the universe to remain consistent.
The universe may have a creator for all I know but he sure as @*@$@*( did not create this universe some few 1000 years ago
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Old 03-29-2017, 03:14 PM   #127
Aaron W.
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Re: Religion and logic

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I would argue that in any reasonable scenario (no pun intended) by which rational thinking proceeds in a human brain critical thinking and weighing of evidence are involved. For YEC this implies the person has come to the conclusion that the old testament is the literal and/or inspired word of the creator of the universe and that this overrides other sources of evidence. This is done in spite of the fact that all 'worldly' evidence we have discovered via the scientific method points to a different conclusion. The evidence is heavily on the opposite side, how could they reach their conclusion rationally without recourse to circular reasoning?
Basically, you're asserting here a superiority of one type of evidence over another. Again, you can assert that this is the case, but that's a form of bias in your analysis.

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This is a stronger notion of rationality than the one you seem to prefer (non-self-contradiction). I grant you that on this notion you can believe prety much anything you want.
This really isn't what I've stated at all. But it's not far from something that I think is plainly obvious about the nature of rationality.

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We can never know everything about the universe or its origins or its most fundamental constituent parts. Depiending on how you would define absolute truth I may disagree with the latter part of your paragraph for several scientific disciplines (chemistry, biology, geography, etc).
You tell me. You're the one who used the phrase. I'm just pointing out that "absolute truth" really isn't a concept that's applicable to scientism (or science in general).

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The amount of order we observe around us makes this overwhelmingly improbable not just for a couple seconds ago but for milennia as well.

The universe may have a creator for all I know but he sure as @*@$@*( did not create this universe some few 1000 years ago
There is literally not a single experiment you can do to prove in any sort of absolute way that the universe is older than just a couple seconds old. It's just an assertion that you're making and nothing more.
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Old 03-29-2017, 03:24 PM   #128
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Re: Religion and logic

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There is literally not a single experiment you can do to prove in any sort of absolute way that the universe is older than just a couple seconds old. It's just an assertion that you're making and nothing more.
That isn't an issue here though, since YECs by implication accept the past as a phenomena. Thus it just moves on to a discussion of model and evidence, and the YEC way of looking at things can not be demonstrated to work - the models for modelling the earth's age can (by predicting for example the makeup of the earth's crust).
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Old 03-29-2017, 03:45 PM   #129
Aaron W.
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Re: Religion and logic

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That isn't an issue here though, since YECs by implication accept the past as a phenomena.
I'm not arguing specifically with regard to YEC beliefs. Just trying to emphasize a particular point to dynamite:

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Unless you believe in a deity which supernaturally interferes in our measurements of radiometric dating, plate tectonics, red-shift, mapping of mitochondrial DNA sequences, etc etc.
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Originally Posted by me
Lastly, it's a simple intellectual exercise to think through your last sentence and realize that "interference" with those measurements isn't actually necessary. If you believe in a purely naturalistic universe (one that progresses only by natural laws), you cannot deny the possibility that the universe was created only a couple seconds ago, and that the initial conditions are such that you believe the universe is very old.
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The amount of order we observe around us makes this overwhelmingly improbable not just for a couple seconds ago but for milennia as well.
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Old 03-29-2017, 08:24 PM   #130
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Re: Religion and logic

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Furthermore, the belief that the earth is 6000 years old is not necessarily irrational if you use the term rational as to mean "based on reason". It is certainly (at this point in time) baseless and goes against credible evidence, but that is not the same as being devoid of reason. In fact, if you examine the belief you will most likely find that many of those who believe this have set up fairly careful explanations as to why all this evidence is wrong. Reason alone is not a good arbiter of truth, observation and testability are equally important.

You might even end up in a scenario where you ask for evidence and the person replies "because the bible says so". If all you can respond to that is "well, science tells me you're wrong" - you're up the creek without a paddle. The correct response is to question the evidence and the quality of the evidence.
If a smart alien from another universe were to listen to the reasons that young earther's put forth about the age of the universe he would almost certainly detect fallacies even if he knew nothing of the evidence.

I do agree though that he couldn't find a fallacy if they merely said "the bible says so." But like I said in a previous post, these guys are not satisfied to use that simple argument for several reasons not the least of which is that it makes it harder to consign others to hell.
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Old 03-30-2017, 03:38 AM   #131
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Re: Religion and logic

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If a smart alien from another universe were to listen to the reasons that young earther's put forth about the age of the universe he would almost certainly detect fallacies even if he knew nothing of the evidence.

I do agree though that he couldn't find a fallacy if they merely said "the bible says so." But like I said in a previous post, these guys are not satisfied to use that simple argument for several reasons not the least of which is that it makes it harder to consign others to hell.
I'm not saying I think the YEC answer is a good one, I think it is very bad. But that doesn't necessarily mean it is very removed in faculty from that of the person who has read the science and uses that to respond.

Your alien might be unable to distinguish between the rational ability of a YEC and someone who accepted scientific evidence, in the same way we have problems distinguishing between the intelligence of a field mouse and a hamster.
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Old 03-30-2017, 10:29 AM   #132
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Re: Religion and logic

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I would argue that in any reasonable scenario (no pun intended) by which rational thinking proceeds in a human brain critical thinking and weighing of evidence are involved. For YEC this implies the person has come to the conclusion that the old testament is the literal and/or inspired word of the creator of the universe and that this overrides other sources of evidence. This is done in spite of the fact that all 'worldly' evidence we have discovered via the scientific method points to a different conclusion. The evidence is heavily on the opposite side, how could they reach their conclusion rationally without recourse to circular reasoning?

This is a stronger notion of rationality than the one you seem to prefer (non-self-contradiction). I grant you that on this notion you can believe prety much anything you want.







We can never know everything about the universe or its origins or its most fundamental constituent parts. Depiending on how you would define absolute truth I may disagree with the latter part of your paragraph for several scientific disciplines (chemistry, biology, geography, etc).



The amount of order we observe around us makes this overwhelmingly improbable not just for a couple seconds ago but for milennia as well.



The universe may have a creator for all I know but he sure as @*@$@*( did not create this universe some few 1000 years ago
There is no place in the OT where it teaches that the earth is 6,000 years old, and it is a very wrong assumption that anyone who believes Genesis is divinely inspired, is a YEC.

It's usually a ploy by ignorant skeptics, to conflate all theists into the YEC bucket.

The semantic range of the Hebrew word 'yom' in the OT covers much more than a 24 hour day. A cursory reading of the creation account shows that the word cannot mean 24 hour day in all the places it's used.

http://www.godandscience.org/youngea...eationism.html
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Old 03-30-2017, 01:31 PM   #133
dynamite22
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Re: Religion and logic

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There is no place in the OT where it teaches that the earth is 6,000 years old, and it is a very wrong assumption that anyone who believes Genesis is divinely inspired, is a YEC.

It's usually a ploy by ignorant skeptics, to conflate all theists into the YEC bucket.

The semantic range of the Hebrew word 'yom' in the OT covers much more than a 24 hour day. A cursory reading of the creation account shows that the word cannot mean 24 hour day in all the places it's used.

http://www.godandscience.org/youngea...eationism.html
I'm not putting all theists into the YEC bucket; I'm putting all YEC's into the "fairy tale believers on the basis of circular reasoning" bucket.
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Old 03-30-2017, 01:57 PM   #134
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Re: Religion and logic

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Basically, you're asserting here a superiority of one type of evidence over another. Again, you can assert that this is the case, but that's a form of bias in your analysis.
I value testable evidence and theories with explanatory and predictive power over the belief in the truth of the content of ancient texts because it says so in these texts. If that makes me biased that's fine.

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You tell me. You're the one who used the phrase. I'm just pointing out that "absolute truth" really isn't a concept that's applicable to scientism (or science in general).

I reread the post and I agree absolute truth was a poor term. What I meant by people who take the bible to be absolute truth are people who believe that most or all of what is described in the old testament really happened and who base their estimate of the age of the earth and universe mostly or strictly on the narrative of the old testament.

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There is literally not a single experiment you can do to prove in any sort of absolute way that the universe is older than just a couple seconds old. It's just an assertion that you're making and nothing more.
Can you ever be sure of anything then?
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Old 03-30-2017, 06:52 PM   #135
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Re: Religion and logic

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I value testable evidence and theories with explanatory and predictive power over the belief in the truth of the content of ancient texts because it says so in these texts. If that makes me biased that's fine.
I also think it's fine. I don't equate "bias" with "error." The real importance here is simply acknowledging that you're doing it.

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Can you ever be sure of anything then?
It's a fair and open question to ask.
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Old 03-30-2017, 07:04 PM   #136
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Re: Religion and logic

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I value testable evidence and theories with explanatory and predictive power over the belief in the truth of the content of ancient texts because it says so in these texts. If that makes me biased that's fine.




I reread the post and I agree absolute truth was a poor term. What I meant by people who take the bible to be absolute truth are people who believe that most or all of what is described in the old testament really happened and who base their estimate of the age of the earth and universe mostly or strictly on the narrative of the old testament.



Can you ever be sure of anything then?
Yeah, you can be sure. But certainty wouldn't mean "truth" and evidence wouldn't mean "proof". It would point to being certain about knowledge, but knowledge isn't an absolute. There is no problem about being certain of current geological theories, but at the same time also being certain that they will at some point be refined and changed. That's the main principle behind science, that knowledge is a thing that can, will and should progress. It isn't even a controversial principle, really.

And why are they superior to YEC? Because they work, they predict stuff, they explain stuff in ways that are actually useful and the theories behind them have survived decades of testing and falsification attempts.

If someone has to flee into solipsism, qualia or radical skepticism (only accepting the currently observed / anything can be seen to be true / knowledge is impossible), then they've forfeited debate, because dialogue is impossible.
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Old 03-30-2017, 07:11 PM   #137
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Re: Religion and logic

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I also think it's fine. I don't equate "bias" with "error." The real importance here is simply acknowledging that you're doing it.



It's a fair and open question to ask.
I've seen plenty of claim this or the related point that anything can be true, but I've never met one willing to put his hand on a hot oven plate to prove his point.
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Old 03-30-2017, 08:15 PM   #138
Aaron W.
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Re: Religion and logic

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I've seen plenty of claim this or the related point that anything can be true, but I've never met one willing to put his hand on a hot oven plate to prove his point.
Specifically what "this" is being claimed? Certainty of knowledge? The existence/non-existence of absolute truth?
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Old 03-31-2017, 03:54 AM   #139
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Re: Religion and logic

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Specifically what "this" is being claimed? Certainty of knowledge? The existence/non-existence of absolute truth?
I'd say you are carrying elements of radical skepticism in your posts in this thread; That knowledge is impossible and certainty never achieved.

Perhaps you aren't actually holding the position personally, but you are using it as an intellectual argument to question dynamite's "refined position" (his arguments now being fairly different from his opening posts in this thread).

My problem with such questioning is that it can't and should never be used to equate two positions. Because then you are using it to make an assertion, and radical skepticism can't do that - it can only question one. You can claim neither position can be certain, but you can't say they are equals because that knowledge is by implication impossible.
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Old 03-31-2017, 04:34 AM   #140
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Re: Religion and logic

So are you saying that no one can say that AAron is a complete tool with absolute certainty of truth?

I refuse to believe that.
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Old 03-31-2017, 07:24 AM   #141
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Re: Religion and logic

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So are you saying that no one can say that AAron is a complete tool with absolute certainty of truth?

I refuse to believe that.
Well, I didn't mean to insult anyone. I think radical skepticism is an interesting argument (from an intellectual point of view). It is impossible to argue against (since its very premise is that any argument lacks certainty and no fact is possible), but I also find that it is largely self-defeating to argue.
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Old 03-31-2017, 11:20 AM   #142
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Re: Religion and logic

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I'd say you are carrying elements of radical skepticism in your posts in this thread; That knowledge is impossible and certainty never achieved.
Ahhh... No. I'm positing limits on "rationality" and not "knowledge."

Rationality is about intellectual processes and knowledge is about conclusions.
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Old 04-03-2017, 07:54 AM   #143
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Re: Religion and logic

I've met several religious people who work in professions where logical thought is essential, and therefore must be capable of it.

What is more interesting on this topic is how smart people can choose between two thought processes, the logical process and the faith based one. I've never been able to understand that.
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Old 04-06-2017, 09:51 PM   #144
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Re: Religion and logic

Op here; grunching.

Looks like we hooked a couple of creationists? Wow.
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Old 04-06-2017, 09:57 PM   #145
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Re: Religion and logic

Ok - sort of skimmed the posts.

Guys who are in favour of religion, I mean, you use nice big words and everything, lots of syllables. But ****, when are you going to realise that you live your lives in a fairy tale?

And then you people vote and foist the fairy tale upon us, the people who actually have a few brain cells to rub together. Unfortunately, it seems that we are in the minority. I just want to say, **** you to all you sanctimonious ****s.
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Old 04-06-2017, 09:58 PM   #146
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Re: Religion and logic

And Aaron, you are first on my great list of people to send to hell when the Armageddon comes.
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Old 04-06-2017, 10:03 PM   #147
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Re: Religion and logic

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I've met several religious people who work in professions where logical thought is essential, and therefore must be capable of it.

What is more interesting on this topic is how smart people can choose between two thought processes, the logical process and the faith based one. I've never been able to understand that.
Cognitive dissonance is a *****.
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Old 04-07-2017, 01:26 AM   #148
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Re: Religion and logic

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Ok - sort of skimmed the posts.
And then you people vote and foist the fairy tale upon us, the people who actually have a few brain cells to rub together. Unfortunately, it seems that we are in the minority. I just want to say, **** you to all you sanctimonious ****s.
I hate it too when they vote for stealing and murder to be crimes because thats what their God wants.
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Old 04-07-2017, 06:16 AM   #149
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Re: Religion and logic

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I hate it too when they vote for stealing and murder to be crimes because thats what their God wants.
There we go with that religion = morality thing again.

How about when they vote to abridge our freedoms because of some passage in the bible, real or perceived?
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Old 04-07-2017, 07:00 AM   #150
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Re: Religion and logic

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I hate it too when they vote for stealing and murder to be crimes because thats what their God wants.
And also, the so-called Christian Republican-voting public in the US are some of the most un-Christ-like people in the world; you only have to look at the policies they support to see that. So don't go thumping on your bible about how religion gives us laws - that is a fiction, along with most other things religious people use to justify their objectively nonsensical beliefs.
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