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Old 11-05-2018, 11:15 AM   #151
Aaron W.
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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I wouldn’t go as far as saying it makes no sense. I just don’t understand how we can apply probability to necessary truths.
Once again, there's a difference between the "omniscient" perspective and the "non-omniscient" perspective. Going back to the coin flip example. From the omniscient perspective, P(double headed coin) is either 0 or 1. But from the non-omniscient perspective, it makes sense to use a probabilistic interpretation.

We can agree that "if a necessary being exists in reality then it necessarily exists." We can call this an "omniscient" perspective (in the sense that we can absolutely affirm the truth value of this claim). But you've done nothing to move the non-omniscient perspective. Why should we accept the hypothesis? What reasons do we have to believe that "a necessary being exists in reality"? You've done nothing there and have refused to address that. So we can take a probabilistic perspective on this aspect of the claim.

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And I don’t see how the analytic/synthetic distinction or epistemic/metaphysical necessity factors in.
Of course you don't. You're still stuck on fighting for a proposition that nobody is actually disputing.

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I don’t know what to call it, but it looks something like using inductive reasoning to justify a belief in a categorical proposition.
I call it a pointless argument. You've done nothing to advance the argument "God exists" and nothing to advance the argument "God does not exist." You've just done a side calculation that has no particular bearing on the proposition.
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Old 11-05-2018, 01:47 PM   #152
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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I call it a pointless argument. You've done nothing to advance the argument "God exists" and nothing to advance the argument "God does not exist." You've just done a side calculation that has no particular bearing on the proposition.
right. The fact that "A necessary being necessarily exists" is a valid statement, does not help you learn anything about reality.

Its like saying "if a gnarlibar exists, then it exists". That doesnt help you get to the probability of a gnarlibar existing, or whether it actually does exist or not.
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Old 11-05-2018, 01:51 PM   #153
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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right. The fact that "A necessary being necessarily exists" is a valid statement, does not help you learn anything about reality.

Its like saying "if a gnarlibar exists, then it exists". That doesnt help you get to the probability of a gnarlibar existing, or whether it actually does exist or not.
Don't be confused when Aaron uses a lot of words to say nothing. That's what he does all the time.
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Old 11-05-2018, 01:57 PM   #154
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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Don't be confused when Aaron uses a lot of words to say nothing. That's what he does all the time.
LOL -- Evidence that Kelvin still has no clue what's happening.
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Old 11-05-2018, 02:03 PM   #155
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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LOL -- Evidence that Kelvin still has no clue what's happening.
That's not my name Erin.
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Old 11-05-2018, 02:05 PM   #156
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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That's not my name Erin.
How could I have confused Lord Kelvin, a person of intellect and scientific pedigree, with Kelvis, a person with neither?

How embarrassing.
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Old 11-05-2018, 07:04 PM   #157
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

I don't mean to speak for John 21, but it is possible that he means that coming up with a probability estimate of God does not help much in one's personal life. If you come up with an estimate of 51% does that mean you will believe in God 183 days of the year and not on 182 days or what?





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Old 11-05-2018, 08:37 PM   #158
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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I don't mean to speak for John 21, but it is possible that he means that coming up with a probability estimate of God does not help much in one's personal life. If you come up with an estimate of 51% does that mean you will believe in God 183 days of the year and not on 182 days or what?





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No, that isn't what he's saying. He's assuming a objective interpretation of probability and then asking: since the objective probability of a necessarily existing being existing is 100%, how can anyone claim anything other than 0 or 1 for the probability of God existing understood as a necessarily existing being.
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:42 PM   #159
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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I call it a pointless argument. You've done nothing to advance the argument "God exists" and nothing to advance the argument "God does not exist." You've just done a side calculation that has no particular bearing on the proposition.
I don’t see how the introduction of probability advances the argument. When people assign a probability, all they’re doing is assigning a numerical value to what they already believe. It’s basically a way to quantify their uncertainty that something is true.
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:47 PM   #160
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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No, that isn't what he's saying. He's assuming a objective interpretation of probability and then asking: since the objective probability of a necessarily existing being existing is 100%, how can anyone claim anything other than 0 or 1 for the probability of God existing understood as a necessarily existing being.
What’s the probability the Bible exists given God is necessary? 1.
What’s the probability the Bible exists given God is impossible? 1.

How could it be any different? Once possibility goes away so to do the possible worlds where things could be different than they are in our actual world. So if we assume God’s impossible—there’s a Bible; if we assume God’s necessary—there’s a Bible.
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Old 11-06-2018, 12:34 AM   #161
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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I don’t see how the introduction of probability advances the argument.
You're welcome to not see it. I've specifically laid out the distinction and value, and you've not once even attempted to address it. At this point, I don't even have a reasonable expectation that you've bothered to read it.

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When people assign a probability, all they’re doing is assigning a numerical value to what they already believe.
What do you mean by "what they already believe"?

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It’s basically a way to quantify their uncertainty that something is true.
If 0 is that quantification, what does this mean about "what they already believe"?

You're making less and less sense as you continue to post things. It's almost at the point where I'm feeling as though you might actually have gaps in your knowledge about elementary logic.
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Old 11-06-2018, 12:37 AM   #162
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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What’s the probability the Bible exists given God is necessary? 1.
What’s the probability the Bible exists given God is impossible? 1.

How could it be any different?
What does the given have to do with anything? For example, under the identical framework, you have

What’s the probability the Bible exists given God is necessary? 1.
What’s the probability the Bible exists given God is NOT necessary? 1.

You've done nothing to distinguish anything. All you're claiming here is that the Bible exists. You're claiming nothing about God.

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Once possibility goes away so to do the possible worlds where things could be different than they are in our actual world.
I don't even know if you know what you mean by "possible worlds."

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So if we assume God’s impossible—there’s a Bible; if we assume God’s necessary—there’s a Bible.
No. If we *observe* the Bible, then we can say there exists a Bible. In the absence of such observations of the physical universe, there *might* be a Bible, but there might not. There are possible worlds in which the Bible doesn't exist.

Unless you're now going to take the position that there is only one possible world, but that's an entirely different conversation and doesn't help you make any progress on any part of your argument up to this point.
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Old 11-06-2018, 03:19 AM   #163
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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What do you mean by "what they already believe"?



If 0 is that quantification, what does this mean about "what they already believe"?
What’s the probability the earth is flat? Explain/justify your answer.
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Old 11-06-2018, 03:34 AM   #164
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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Unless you're now going to take the position that there is only one possible world, but that's an entirely different conversation and doesn't help you make any progress on any part of your argument up to this point.
If we leave the door open for the possible, wouldn't that negate the impossible? Better leave it closed.

Last edited by John21; 11-06-2018 at 03:42 AM.
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:31 AM   #165
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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What’s the probability the Bible exists given God is necessary? 1.
This is a conditional probability P(A|B) (read: probability of A given B) asks that GIVEN B is true, what is the probability that A is true. Let's agree that this P(A|B) you have written down is indeed 1.

However, the question is what is P(B)? That is, what is the probability that God is necessary? This is where you are getting tripped up, because what do we even mean by this? Well you told us this:
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It’s basically a way to quantify their uncertainty that something is true.
Fair enough. So when I say that it is unlikely that God is necessary, this is - on your view - me expressing my uncertainty that this claim is true. I also think Democrats have an about 80% chance of winning the House today. Now they either will or will not. God either is necessary or is not. My next coinflip will either be heads or it will not. But on your view of assigning probabilities as an expression of my certainty I can come along and assign 80%, <1%, and 50% for these three things.

Hence, your claim that we can only assign 1 or 0 to this is inconsistent with how you express probability.

(I recognize others have tried to make this point and failed, maybe I can get lucky)
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:52 AM   #166
Aaron W.
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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What’s the probability the earth is flat? Explain/justify your answer.
Great... we're going to have a flat earth conversation, too?

My belief in a flat earth has more to do with empirical observation and that has reached a point of strong confidence.

But if you were to ask me about something else, like the probability of intelligent life outside of earth, I'd give you a probability. I consider it rather unlikely, but not impossible. If you forced me to put a number on it, I'd say something like 10%.

Notice how you're STILL avoiding the coinflip problem. Why is that?
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:52 AM   #167
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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If we leave the door open for the possible, wouldn't that negate the impossible? Better leave it closed.
Wut?
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Old 11-06-2018, 03:28 PM   #168
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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This is a conditional probability P(A|B) (read: probability of A given B) asks that GIVEN B is true, what is the probability that A is true. Let's agree that this P(A|B) you have written down is indeed 1.

However, the question is what is P(B)? That is, what is the probability that God is necessary? This is where you are getting tripped up, because what do we even mean by this? Well you told us this:
Fair enough. So when I say that it is unlikely that God is necessary, this is - on your view - me expressing my uncertainty that this claim is true. I also think Democrats have an about 80% chance of winning the House today. Now they either will or will not. God either is necessary or is not. My next coinflip will either be heads or it will not. But on your view of assigning probabilities as an expression of my certainty I can come along and assign 80%, <1%, and 50% for these three things.

Hence, your claim that we can only assign 1 or 0 to this is inconsistent with how you express probability.

(I recognize others have tried to make this point and failed, maybe I can get lucky)
My position is that God must exist (necessary) or can’t possibly exist (impossible). Obviously, I can’t compel you to accept that framing, but if for argument’s sake you do and you think <1% necessary, then for all intents you’re 100% certain that God can’t possibly exist. Again, within my framing. But, imo, that’s not causing the issues. The issues are cropping up when the evidence is factored in. For example:

How can the evidence of the Bible lower the probability that the proposition “God exists” is true?
Or, how can the evidence of evil lower the probability that the proposition “God doesn’t exist” is true?

The answer to both is it can’t, and if it is - which it is itt - something has gone wrong. I think some are treating this like a coin-flip instead of two mutually exclusive but separate hypothesis that need to be run out on their own and then compared at the end. The reason being is that there are particular questions we need to ask and we need to ask them in a particular order, oftentimes assuming a hypothesis is true and using evidence from the actual world. For example, say we want to determine the probability that the light switch is on. So we assume it’s on and think about what evidence we’d expect to find assuming that hypothesis is true. Then we have questions like, “What’s the probability that the light switch is on given the room is illuminated?” But if we ask that question we also must ask, “What’s the probability that the room is illuminated given the light switch is on?” Same goes with the God exists hypothesis: we must ask “What’s the probability the Bible exists given ‘God exists’ (is true)?”
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Old 11-06-2018, 05:12 PM   #169
Aaron W.
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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My position is that God must exist (necessary) or can’t possibly exist (impossible). Obviously, I can’t compel you to accept that framing...
Just as we can't compel you to accept a different framing.

But what's interesting here is that you seem to have accepted that this dichotomy isn't valid. That is, there are things other than "necessary" and "impossible" in the realm of existence statements.

So what is your justification for taking this specific position and negating all others?
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Old 11-06-2018, 06:04 PM   #170
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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My position is that God must exist (necessary) or can’t possibly exist (impossible). Obviously, I can’t compel you to accept that framing, but if for argument’s sake you do and you think <1% necessary, then for all intents you’re 100% certain that God can’t possibly exist. Again, within my framing. But, imo, that’s not causing the issues. The issues are cropping up when the evidence is factored in. For example:

How can the evidence of the Bible lower the probability that the proposition “God exists” is true?
Or, how can the evidence of evil lower the probability that the proposition “God doesn’t exist” is true?

The answer to both is it can’t, and if it is - which it is itt - something has gone wrong.
Sure, I'll accept your poor framing. You told me that probability meant an expression of my uncertainty in a proposition. I'm not certain which of your two cases is correct, that God is necessary or impossible. However, I can use facts about he universe (such as manifest "evil") to inform my personally level of certainty. As an atheist, I don't believe a God or necessary being exists. However, I don't believe the "chance" of it is exactly zero. I think it's more likely, for instance, than that we are living on the back of a turtle.

A coin-flip is a good analogy. In (a deterministic) reality, there is only one outcome of a coinflip possible. It will either be heads or tails. I just don't know which it will be. So I can model a flipping coin as something with a 50:50 probability, and express my certainty as saying there is a 50% probability of a head.




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The reason being is that there are particular questions we need to ask and we need to ask them in a particular order, oftentimes assuming a hypothesis is true and using evidence from the actual world. For example, say we want to determine the probability that the light switch is on. So we assume it’s on and think about what evidence we’d expect to find assuming that hypothesis is true. Then we have questions like, “What’s the probability that the light switch is on given the room is illuminated?” But if we ask that question we also must ask, “What’s the probability that the room is illuminated given the light switch is on?” Same goes with the God exists hypothesis: we must ask “What’s the probability the Bible exists given ‘God exists’ (is true)?”
You should google Bayes' Theorem. It will tell you how to relate conditional probabilities in this manner.
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Old 11-06-2018, 11:00 PM   #171
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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Just as we can't compel you to accept a different framing.

But what's interesting here is that you seem to have accepted that this dichotomy isn't valid. That is, there are things other than "necessary" and "impossible" in the realm of existence statements.

So what is your justification for taking this specific position and negating all others?
I don't understand what you're asking.
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Old 11-06-2018, 11:02 PM   #172
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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You should google Bayes' Theorem.
I've tested it. Evidence didn't match up, so it's probably false.
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Old 11-07-2018, 12:44 AM   #173
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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I don't understand what you're asking.
"My position is that God must exist (necessary) or can’t possibly exist (impossible)."

Why have you chosen this framework?
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Old 11-07-2018, 02:10 AM   #174
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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"My position is that God must exist (necessary) or can’t possibly exist (impossible)."

Why have you chosen this framework?
That any being worthy of the name wouldn't be dependent or contingent on anything outside itself for its existence.
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Old 11-07-2018, 12:44 PM   #175
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Re: Is there any proof of God?

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I've tested it. Evidence didn't match up, so it's probably false.
Your belief is that Bayes' Theorem, arguably one of the most important theorems in probability, that has been mathematically proven, is probably false?

You should share your results with the mathematical community!
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