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Nysha's New Creators for November - posted on 1st Dec 2017 at 6:00 PM
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Original Poster
#1 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 9:15 AM
Default UNReligion Thread: Atheism, Etc.
This thread is for the discussion of non-religion, atheism, and agnosticism. Please keep debate of these topics to this thread so that they do not spill over into unrelated threads.
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#2 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 9:32 AM
I sort of object to shunting one of the most important aspects of religion - it's exceptional status as "socially accepted" irrationality - into a thread of its own. What is there really to discuss here?

That most important question about faith isn't a matter of "atheism", specifically.

Sure, it might lead to atheism/agnosticism in some parties. But it's still a question about faith, not disbelief.

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#3 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 9:43 AM
Because the religion thread was turning into pretty much just atheism vs. religion. There's plenty about the finer points of religion, belief, etc., that really have nothing to do with atheism. Belief vs. nonbelief is enough of an interesting subject to deserve a topic of its own.

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Field Researcher
#4 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 9:56 AM
(Gets out popcorn) Round One Fight!

There are no stupid questions, just stupid people!
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#5 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 9:57 AM
I understand the reasoning up to a point. If we had a thread on homeopathy, we wouldn't force everyone who wanted to argue it didn't work from an evidential basis to leave the thread, though, would we?

Are these threads merely discussion threads, where the religious (and non-religious) can talk at length about whether God can move a mountain so long as the thesis goes unchallenged? Or are they debate threads where, inevitably, we all need to look at the foundations of our beliefs in order to mount a debate - a defence - of them?

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GON OUT, BACKSON, BISY BACKSON
world renowned whogivesafuckologist
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Original Poster
#6 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 10:02 AM
Religion, by its very nature, is based on faith. There isn't going to be any evidence that a true believer can offer to say "Here, look, here is my proof for God." You can't expect proof from religion - it just doesn't work that way.

my simblr (sometimes nsfw)

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Panquecas, panquecas e mais panquecas.
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#7 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 10:35 AM
Okay. You're the boss at all rates, anyway. Sorry to labour the point.

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Lab Assistant
#8 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 10:36 AM
I'm an Agnostic.
hey,i just found a good article :D

Lemme be yo sledgehammer
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#9 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 10:49 AM
kiwi_tea - FWIW, I do actually agree with you, mostly. Personally, I'm agnostic (with a small side of some wacky stuff) - I believe in science, and generally feel that believing in some all-powerful being that created the universe and cares about your daily life is pretty silly. Though for me, the beauty and elegance of the universe suggests that there is something bigger than mere chance - something huge with -some- kind of "consciousness" that put all this together in such an amazingly logical and finely-tuned way... but so unknowable it's almost not worth even speculating the nature of such a thing. But at the same time, I do try to understand religion (hard not to when you've grown up southern Baptist)... and the wacky stuff I believe in treats belief as powerful in its own right, whether it's the Christian "God" or Violette Table Gorillicus. Whether it's a "placebo" or not doesn't really matter so much as the result, and whether or not it works for the individual.

In any case, in debates, unless I put it in big purple text, it's just my opinion - not a matter of me putting on my staff hat - and can be debated just as anyone else's.
Scholar
#10 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 4:05 PM
I, too, object to separating this topic from the other religion threads, but I'll post here since HP has final say on this site.

Continued from "All Other Religions":

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nekowolf
Which, funnily enough, is just like the Jeudo-Christian God. The thing about that, is "infinite existence" is impossible. There HAS to be a beginning, to everything. There absolutely must be, even if it just pops out from a complete and true lack of existence.


I don't see how it's anything like the Judeo-Christian God. If the universe periodically expands and shrinks, it is simply energy going through motions. I don't see why the universe can't be infinite. For one, if there was a creator, the creator must also be infinitely old. No matter what you think the history of the universe looks like, there has to be something that was around an infinite period of time ago, even if it is just a sort of potential for the creation of energy and matter. I contend that whatever was around was not sapient. There are too many things that don't line up with our descriptions of a sapient being who creates the universe. It is still possible that there is some sort of deistic reality, in which a super-sapient being created the universe, but has nothing to do with it and has none of the characteristics assigned by various religions to it. I think that it is more likely that it isn't sapient.

Quote:
AH! Untrue! It already has impacted our reality! Just the mere thought of the possibility is enough to impact us! Art, music, poetry, literature, culture, all of that has been impacted by the mere concept of a transcendent reality, regardless of the truth of it.

I think the problem here is you are trying to apply an aspect of one situation, imposing it onto other situation where it does not quite work that way.

To put it simply, sciences affect our reality through foresight. Religion and philosophy and such affect our reality through hindsight, I guess you could say.

However, ideas of transmigration, such as into Heaven, are also of affect our realities through foresight. Because you want to transcend, so you will do things to try to guarantee that that is what will happen. That you'll have peace after death.


The idea of something might have a real impact, but that does not mean that it is an expression of truth. In this case, rather than transcendent reality being the thing affecting reality, it is the human thought of the idea of transcendent reality. Thought need not line up with reality. If it did, we should have or have had mythical creatures roaming the earth, such as the aforementioned unicorns prancing down the street. If human thought equated to truth, we would either have a much stranger reality than we do, or we wouldn't be capable of creativity, because our thoughts would have to line up with reality at all times. Neither is the case.


Quote:
See, and this the thing. It's really not. But, at the same time, it's not really something easily explained. I think it's more like, you really don't understand it. And we really can't explain it. Because we don't make random things up. I doubt anywhere, short of a complete psychotic, you'll find someone who truly believes in the Flying Spaghetti Monster, who truly believes in Cthulhu, who truly believes, uh, in Lolth. It just doesn't work that way. But it's like explaining the inner workings of the deepest aspects of the human mind. It's nowhere near easy, and unless you really experience it and find understand for yourself, you probably won't get it at all. You just really won't understand.

And the same applies towards, as well. There some people, some atheists, anti-theists, whatever, who say things I really just do not get at all, and will probably never understand.


The only difference is that the thing you believe is passed down through generations, though I will provide you of an example of a religion that is much like the Flying Spaghetti Monster, in that it is recent and made up from the mind of it's creator: scientology. If you were a scientologist, you would believe in the made up account that L. Ron Hubbard gives, while everyone else would see the evidence against your religion, such as the fact that L. Ron Hubbard made it up as a joke. That record is still around, so we ridicule scientology, as there is evidence that it is simply made up. The record of the people who wrote the Bible and other religious books/tenants is no longer around, so we can't see the human motivations of those people, so it is a bit harder to ridicule them. It is still very likely that other religions were made up by some person or group of people, but those who choose to believe in religion can feel safe in the knowledge that there is no direct proof decrying the origins of their religion. Though, considering scientology, it seems that people don't even need that much.

Quote:
But there is; your experiences, your thoughts, your beliefs, your affiliations, etc, you yourself, is strictly "yours." Yes, you can share similar beliefs and experiences, but you're not, uh, you're not fusing them together, you're not experiencing each other like you guys switched bodies or something, your experiences are solely yours. By "sharing" them, all that means is reciting them for someone else to understand.

Your very perception of the world is your reality. There isn't one singular reality, there's many. Yeah, we share a material reality; if there is a table in the middle of the room, we both see it, we can both feel it, we can both physically perceive it with our sense. However! We can disagree on the kind of wood its made of, we can describe it differently, and we can both firmly believe that we are right. Those are two different realities amongst two different people. If you say it's oak, and I say it's hickory, you may think I am wrong, because in your reality, you are right, it is oak. And it won't change until we can truly prove that it is either oak or hickory (and some people, even then, they won't change their mind).


As you pointed out, we still share a physical reality, though. Brain-body duality is a ridiculous concept, considering that there are physical realities that line up with how the brain works. To say that the things in your mind are a separate reality is to say that there is some aspect of your mind removed from physical reality. You can have your own subjective thoughts and perceptions of the world, but they do not equate to truth, even if you believe them. In the case of two people disagreeing on the composition of a table, one or both is wrong.

Quote:
...and are you suggesting photons and the likes have some form of consciousness?


No, I'm suggesting that consciousness consists of a variety of traits that can be derived from highly ordered energy. Have you ever heard of Emergence?

Quote:
Lastly, I know I am far from the best person to say this. I have my outbursts, and they are often fueled on emotion. But, I agree with fakepeeps. It's not about you guys having a contradictory position. It's the attitude you will sometimes present it with. An attitude of self-assurance. "I am right. You are wrong and your beliefs are ridiculous." I'm not going to say you guys do it all the time, but it does come out every now and then. And it's often very casual. Look, I know I have my outbursts, and when I do, I think it's obvious I'm pissed off. But when you guys come across as you sometimes do, it's much more subtle, and it gives us a feeling of being snubbed or being patronized. I think that is what she means. That you guys come across to us at times, as coming onto these topics simply to demonstrate rather that discuss, like a Christian who'll go into a random topic and go on about how "You should all learn from God," and when someone tries to discuss it with them in a different opinion, this person simply dismisses them as "confused" or whatever.


I haven't been dismissing discussion. I typically address every or nearly every point that I disagree with. I use logic, which is my way of respecting the intelligence of other debaters. I'm not passing things down on authority, expecting that everyone will simply believe me. I'm making logical arguments that any other logical human being could follow. That other logical human being won't necessarily come to the same conclusions I do, but at least he/she can understand where I'm coming from. I hate to say it, but I think that religious people are more arrogant in this regard. They pass down things on authority of their god(s), leaving those of us who don't believe in that god to wonder how someone can come to such conclusions. Any debate in this manner is almost worthless, as it comes down to two people simply talking at each other, with little to no progress on understanding the ideas of the other or discovering truth.
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DELETED POST
25th Sep 2010 at 5:27 PM
This message has been deleted by Wojtek. Reason: No longer valid
Field Researcher
#11 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 6:19 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wojtek
From what I read an atheist is a person who doesn't believe in any force or spirit. An agnostic is a person who somewhat believes is a kind of a force that created everything but it's not a God as such. Correct me if I'm wrong.

An agnostic questions the existence of deity but unlike atheists they don't entirely dismiss the idea of a supreme being. They generally feel that we (humans) have no way of knowing weither one exists or not.

A deist does believe in god but is not part of any religion.

There are no stupid questions, just stupid people!
Scholar
#12 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 6:53 PM
Cause I don't feel like quoting it all:

1. One if the criticism I sometimes here is the concept of infinite existence. That's what I was referring to; if the universe can have infinite existence, then so can some god.

If anything, that idea makes a deity even MORE likely, as I see it. Though, I would like to hear more theories on this idea that the universe has simply "always existed." I find it much more likely that within the primordial beginnings of the universe, physics as we know it did not apply; rather, it was doing things in a very different way, and eventually evolved into the physics we have now, probably through stabilization of the universe or something.

2. Your original comment expressed nothing about "truth," simply that a transcendent reality did not have an effect on us right now. As such, I'm going to avoid a direct answer, as the truth of a transcendent reality or anything like that is unknown to me as it is to everyone; I cannot possibly answer it in any satisfactory way unless I want to proclaim knowledge that I do not have.

3. I must make a quote here.

Quote:
The only difference is that the thing you believe is passed down through generations
- except that is not true. Many pagans were not taught paganism for previous generations, no. We found it ourselves. My immediate family is, I would say, agnostic secular. I'm not really sure of their views, but I did not grow up in a religious setting of any kind. My Heathenry wasn't "passed down" to me in any way. I wouldn't expect you to really understand, but, I am a Heathen because, well, I am drawn to it. It feels so very natural. This is not exclusive to paganism, either; there are Christians and others who feel the same way towards their religion. They chose it specifically because of something inside of them.

This is partly what irks me about kiwi's comments. It's not like we wake up and are suddenly like, "I think I'll be a Heathen!" just like how gays don't wake up and are suddenly "I think I'll be homosexual!" I cannot make that any clearer.

Oh, and Scientology is a really poor example. Religions, well, most anyway, they're not some guy, or a group of people, who just think up of stuff off the top of their heads. They evolved with the evolution of cultures and thought. Yes, the Bible was chosen by a group of men, but Christianity in itself evolved from Judaism, which evolved from paleopaganism.

4. So, wait. Consciousness is energy, or at least, partly made up of energy? I'm still not quite seeing the point of the original comment (though, I'll have to go back and reread, as I have already forgotten what it was).

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
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#13 Old 25th Sep 2010 at 8:09 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nekowolf
Though, I would like to hear more theories on this idea that the universe has simply "always existed." I find it much more likely that within the primordial beginnings of the universe, physics as we know it did not apply; rather, it was doing things in a very different way, and eventually evolved into the physics we have now, probably through stabilization of the universe or something.


I think that's assuming that time is actually the way we observe it to be. Maybe time as we know it started with our current universe... and before that, time didn't actually exist. So there could be a "beginning" and a "before"... but only with respect to this one universe. Maybe it's just one floating in a timeless soup of potentiality. (Kind of makes your brain hurt, doesn't it?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nekowolf
Many pagans were not taught paganism for previous generations, no. We found it ourselves. My immediate family is, I would say, agnostic secular. I'm not really sure of their views, but I did not grow up in a religious setting of any kind.


I'm the same way (although I'm not pagan). My parents didn't want to push any religion on me. We didn't even go to church when I was a kid. There seem to be some uber-religious folks in the family tree (including a number of missionaries), but all of that seems to have fallen away with the migration to North America. I don't think any of my grandparents attended church (at least, not in their later years). So a belief in Christianity wasn't "passed down"... at least, not to me. I've got one cousin who is "born-again", but she's the only one in an otherwise secular family and it was her choice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oaktree
You can have your own subjective thoughts and perceptions of the world, but they do not equate to truth, even if you believe them. In the case of two people disagreeing on the composition of a table, one or both is wrong.


What if, instead, you're arguing about the nature of light? Particle or wave? If one person believes it's behaving like particles and another believes it's behaving like waves... aren't they both partially right, even if their views are only based on their subjective perspective?
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#14 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 1:50 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nekowolf
My Heathenry wasn't "passed down" to me in any way. I wouldn't expect you to really understand, but, I am a Heathen because, well, I am drawn to it. It feels so very natural. This is not exclusive to paganism, either; there are Christians and others who feel the same way towards their religion. They chose it specifically because of something inside of them.

This is partly what irks me about kiwi's comments. It's not like we wake up and are suddenly like, "I think I'll be a Heathen!" just like how gays don't wake up and are suddenly "I think I'll be homosexual!" I cannot make that any clearer.


You choose it, gradually. Religions evolve gradually, out of mutual invention and mutual misinterpretation. You were taught it by people in writing and in speech. It might "feel" "natural". So? It's still artificial. It's still an arbitrary choice. It's still not something you're condemned to.


Quote:
Originally Posted by fakepeeps9
What if, instead, you're arguing about the nature of light? Particle or wave? If one person believes it's behaving like particles and another believes it's behaving like waves... aren't they both partially right, even if their views are only based on their subjective perspective?


Whoa. What kind of point are you trying to make with this?

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Scholar
#15 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 3:03 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwi_tea
You choose it, gradually. Religions evolve gradually, out of mutual invention and mutual misinterpretation. You were taught it by people in writing and in speech. It might "feel" "natural". So? It's still artificial. It's still an arbitrary choice. It's still not something you're condemned to.

Yes. I did "choose" it, in the most liberal meaning of the word.

Now, to be honest, I'm not certain if you are saying I, specifically, was "taught it by people in writing and in speech," so I'm just going to go with that.

No. No, I wasn't. I discovered it completely on my own, educating myself on my own. The most help I gotten was from authors, living or dead, who have recorded in writing what I read. All the rest was all me. Now, that is just me, specifically. Otherwise, when being raised in, say, a family who pulls you into their faith, then I would be much more inclined to agree with you in that case.

But anyway, it's a part of who I am. It's like my taste in music, or the foods I like, or what hobbies I enjoy. If you want to define those as "choices" as well, feel free.

As for fakepeeps, I believe she's saying the world is not so black and white, to put it in a very simple context.

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
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#16 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 3:33 AM
Quote:
The most help I gotten was from authors, living or dead, who have recorded in writing what I read.


That's exactly what I meant. Although, even if you'd have invented it, you ruin it by believing it instead of just enjoying it as a fiction. You elevate to the level of a knowledge, instead of an invention.

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Scholar
#17 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 3:39 AM
Whatever, dude. I don't really have anything more to say that wouldn't come off as, well, never mind.

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
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#18 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 3:49 AM
So in other words, your entire defence is a grumpy self-righteousness. Calm down. Think of a good, solid argument. Then use it. If there isn't one, just anger, impatience and incoherence, don't you think you need to reevaluate something about your stance?

Why do you find it impossible to offer a defence without resorting to this frequent evasion: "I'd say something, but it'd just be an insult"?

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GON OUT, BACKSON, BISY BACKSON
Scholar
#19 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 4:09 AM
Self-righteousness? No. I don't feel superior to you or anyone else here.

And because there is no defense that would be adequate to the scope of which you view religion and faith. Science and faith, they are apples and oranges. Science is science, and faith is faith. But they are not mutually exclusive either; you can take the apple and the orange and make starfruit.* "Oh but the scientific method!" Yeah. Scientific method. It's meant for science, it's meant for the observable and the understandable.

We cannot "research" the nature of deities, nor their existence. We cannot make observations if they are real or not. It is like asking to observe "an idea." You cannot do it. You cannot physically observe an idea.

But anyway, you want to know why I am so irked? Because I don't see a god damn discussion. What I see is you coming into religion topics not with the intention of discussion but with the intention to prove a point; that religion is false, that it is fantasy. Yeah, we get it. How many times are you going to repeat it? You know what, maybe this topic is good? Because every time you feel the urge to have to go into how religion is fantasy, we actually have a place to point to and say "take it there."

Grumpy, yes. Self-righteous? No. Just really irritated by what I see as nothing more but a lack of interest, aside from letting us with faith all know that you believe religion is fake.

*I've had starfruit before; it, like, has the texture of an apple with the taste of an orange

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
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#20 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 4:21 AM
Are these debate forums, or discussion forums? If you just want to freely pontificate about your personal imaginings of what a deity might be ad nauseum, why are you in a debate thread? Why are these threads stickied in a Debate Forum and not a General Discussion one?

Cos that might very well be part of the problem here.

Quote:
But they are not mutually exclusive either; you can take the apple and the orange and make starfruit.


That example is perfect for describing your stance precisely because in a shallow way it's appealing, but fundamentally it's absolute rubbish. Go make a starfruit out of an apple and an orange. See how you go.

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GON OUT, BACKSON, BISY BACKSON
Scholar
#21 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 4:32 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nekowolf
2. Your original comment expressed nothing about "truth," simply that a transcendent reality did not have an effect on us right now. As such, I'm going to avoid a direct answer, as the truth of a transcendent reality or anything like that is unknown to me as it is to everyone; I cannot possibly answer it in any satisfactory way unless I want to proclaim knowledge that I do not have.


Truth has everything to do with it, though. Religions try to pass on truth and explanations of observations. The point that I'm making is that religion is not a reliable means of finding truth. There's also the matter of the truth value of the existence of god(s). The evidence does not support the existence of god(s), so it is unlikely to be true.

Quote:
- except that is not true. Many pagans were not taught paganism for previous generations, no. We found it ourselves. My immediate family is, I would say, agnostic secular. I'm not really sure of their views, but I did not grow up in a religious setting of any kind. My Heathenry wasn't "passed down" to me in any way. I wouldn't expect you to really understand, but, I am a Heathen because, well, I am drawn to it. It feels so very natural. This is not exclusive to paganism, either; there are Christians and others who feel the same way towards their religion. They chose it specifically because of something inside of them.


What I was getting at is that the religion you follow has been around for generations, whether you got it directly from your parents or not.

Quote:
This is partly what irks me about kiwi's comments. It's not like we wake up and are suddenly like, "I think I'll be a Heathen!" just like how gays don't wake up and are suddenly "I think I'll be homosexual!" I cannot make that any clearer.


You're drawing a poor parallel. Sexuality is an innate biological characteristic, religion must be learned. Sexuality cannot be changed, you have only to watch a born-again evangelist to see that people change religions all the time. It may be that you feel a special connection to your religion, but that religion cannot be a part of your innate nature, as we are not born with religious dogma seared onto our brains.

Quote:
Oh, and Scientology is a really poor example. Religions, well, most anyway, they're not some guy, or a group of people, who just think up of stuff off the top of their heads. They evolved with the evolution of cultures and thought. Yes, the Bible was chosen by a group of men, but Christianity in itself evolved from Judaism, which evolved from paleopaganism.


How do you know that religions aren't just some guys thinking up stuff off the tops of their heads? You weren't there when the first Heathen passed on the dogma of Heathenism to other Heathens. You weren't there when God supposedly passed down the word to man. You weren't there for the teachings of the Buddha. You don't know the motives of the people involved, or whether any god actually showed up to reveal divine knowledge. If you are referring to the level of thought put into a religion, I'm sure L. Ron Hubbard put a lot of thought into his religion. His aim was to use the persuasive elements present in other religions to create his own (initially for the sake of experimentation, though he later embraced his role in scientology). He had to have thought hard enough to figure out what it is that persuades people into a religion, because he was successful at creating a cult of fanatics. No matter how much thought is put into something, if it isn't true, it isn't true.

Quote:
4. So, wait. Consciousness is energy, or at least, partly made up of energy? I'm still not quite seeing the point of the original comment (though, I'll have to go back and reread, as I have already forgotten what it was).


Energy forms matter, matter organizes into neurons and neurotransmitters, neurons and neurotransmitters come together in vast networks, and - voila! - cognition. The point of the original comment was that you were arguing from the standpoint of a Cartesian dualist, one who considers mind and body to be separate things with separate realities. I was arguing that there is no need for a separate reality of thought, as thought can be explained pretty well in terms of this reality.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fakepeeps7
What if, instead, you're arguing about the nature of light? Particle or wave? If one person believes it's behaving like particles and another believes it's behaving like waves... aren't they both partially right, even if their views are only based on their subjective perspective?


Light doesn't behave like particles and waves at the same time. It behaves as a wave most of the time, and behaves as a particle under certain conditions. The conditions in which the light is observed determine which is right. Two people observing the same packet of light energy would not observe different states of the light, though. If they looked at the light at the exact same time and position, each would observe one state or the other and they would be in agreement.

A similar comparison can be made when talking about caterpillars and butterflies. The same insect can be one or the other, but two people observing the same insect at the same time would not observe different states.
Scholar
#22 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 4:58 AM
@Oaktree

Again, I'll just do the numerical thing.

1. That's oversimplifying things. Not all religion is about that, though. Especially faiths born of this new wave of pagan revival, where focus on the "truth" and such is of a much less concern than, say, traditional Catholicism.

2. Oh. I still don't see what that really has to do with anything, though. So it's been around a while. So what?

3. That is so not the point of what I said. Nor how do you know? Sure, we're not "born" with it, but it certainly can be developed into us as a part of our nature later on.

4. Oh god. You know, it's just like how cultures change. I'm not going to sit here and explain this; I'm sure you are smart enough to figure it out.

5. I think you missed my point. I wasn't talking about souls or a literal "reality." Rather, that what we interpret for ourselves belong only to ourselves; that we as individuals have our own unique thoughts and lives; that's what I meant. Our realities are different. We share a material world, but we do not share minds, like some kind of hive-mind. Instead, our minds are possessed only by the individual person that mind belongs to.

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
Scholar
#23 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 5:25 AM
@ Nekowolf:

1. Explain to me what purpose your religious beliefs serve. I'd like to know, as, from my experience, religion pretty much always seems to posit some sort of "truth".

2. It doesn't have much to do with it, but you misunderstood my original post, so I was clarifying. I simply said that your religion has been around longer than some idea that might randomly occur to someone, but it doesn't give it any more credibility.

3. If it is not something that you are born with, it is something that is either impressed upon you or a choice. If you choose to follow an unevidenced religion, I think it is a poor choice. If it is impressed upon you, I feel a little sorry for you, though even people who are brainwashed into following a particular religion as a child are capable of evaluating their beliefs at some point and casting them off.

4. I really don't know what you're getting at here. One flawed set of beliefs developed off of another set of flawed beliefs doesn't reach truth. When Ptolemy built a cosmological model based on the flawed physics of the Greeks, his model wasn't true because his assumptions were false.

5. We have our own individual thoughts, but those thoughts that are meant to represent facts about the world must still be compared to the world in order to be determined true or false. There are true facts about our shared reality, while there are conceptions of facts about the world, which may or may not be true, in our individual perceptions. Our individual perceptions can still be considered right or wrong because they are tied to the shared reality.
Forum Resident
#24 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 6:10 AM
Subway still arranges their cheese in a manner that does not tessellate. If that's not evidence that there isn't a God, I don't know what is.
Scholar
#25 Old 26th Sep 2010 at 11:47 AM
1. Purpose? I can't say it has any purpose other than that I believe in it in some context. Those with a "purpose" seem to be, if anything, the monotheist faiths; they seem to be the ones who have the biggest concept of "purpose."

I ask, you say "in your experience," but just how many faiths do you know of in our experience? Not just mere basics, but like their communities and practitioners? How many of them were not monotheist faiths? How much communication have you had with them?

3. *sighes* I'm not going to explain it again.

"It's a choice."
"Yes, but-"
"No buts. It's a choice."
"In a way, however it is still a part of my-"
"It's a choice."

God. You know what. You're not the one who is experiencing it, alright? Don't go around telling me this crap when you don't ever get it. Your mind is set and it won't change. Just like those who believe homosexuality is a choice. But now you'll probably go into how that's a poor comparison and- you know what, shut it. That's not the freaking point here, and either you know it, or you're not thinking about it hard enough to see it.

5. Forget it. Once again, I'm not going to re-explain everything. You're just looking at things in black and white.

Is that a shillelagh in your pocket, or are you just sinning against God?
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