A Pragmatist's Guide to God
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17-04-2017, 08:52 PM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
(17-04-2017 07:53 PM)Rachel Wrote:  
(17-04-2017 05:16 PM)Cheerful Charlie Wrote:  The problem is what do you do when large numbers of people abandon critical thinking for a complex series of errors and myths that also denigrate thinking?

What do we do with an ideology that has shut out real thinking for a parody of rationality?

An excellent question. Confronting it with reason doesn't work. Ignoring it and hoping it goes away doesn't work. It's as if a large percentage of the population voluntarily self-lobotomized.

I'm confused. Are we talking about a religious mindset?

Or the Murikan electorate?

Either way the root cause is the same ... a human tendency to idolatry / iconolatry.

I've come to the conclusion that a fair proportion (but not all) of those who voted for Trump were either idolaters swept up in a reality TV / celeb culture or were anti-Clinton iconoclasts (a group which also includes many abstainers).

Icons / image / archetypes being the common factor here.

Brexit, by contrast, came from a British tradition of iconoclasm ... an instinct to swim against the tide... rather than idolising e.g. Boris Johnson.

What's the solution?

A global flood would be effective, but in the mean time, as Girly said earlier in this thread...

(14-04-2017 09:13 AM)GirlyMan Wrote:  ...
heuristics are at their most useful when we have complete information. "Dude, that's the same as the traveling salesman problem. You better have another plan if you want to get to Gramma's house in time for dinner."
...

An icon or stereotype can be a useful short-cut to avoid the hard work of critical thinking. But so often there's a hungry wolf waiting for you when you get there.

Perhaps natural selection is the planet's best hope. Sorry humans, your days a numbered.

Angel

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18-04-2017, 07:41 AM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
Invincible ignorance, bigotry, irrationality can be a driving force in numerous varieties of ideologies. Religion, politics, racism, economic policies, sexism, and more. It is not uncommon to see several irrationalities like this combined in a mutal supporting larger irrationality. Bad cultures can be a problem here. Such as caste in India. Religion rarely stands alone when it comes to irrational thinking.

When I shake my ignore file, I can hear them buzzing!

Cheerful Charlie
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18-04-2017, 07:43 AM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
iconolatry - noun, derogatory, the worship of icons.

Seems like I should've already known this one. I mean I knew it as soon as I saw it but weird that I've never seen it before. The more you know.

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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18-04-2017, 07:51 AM (This post was last modified: 18-04-2017 08:08 AM by GirlyMan.)
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
(17-04-2017 08:52 PM)DLJ Wrote:  
(14-04-2017 09:13 AM)GirlyMan Wrote:  ...
heuristics are at their most useful when we have complete information. "Dude, that's the same as the traveling salesman problem. You better have another plan if you want to get to Gramma's house in time for dinner."
...

An icon or stereotype can be a useful short-cut to avoid the hard work of critical thinking. But so often there's a hungry wolf waiting for you when you get there.

Sometimes the problem is the hungry wolf. When critical thinking shows the problem to be intractable, heuristics (i.e., informed intuitions) and approximation are all we got. Fortunately we got this. And Moore's law has at least held up long enough so that we got the computational horsepower to use it for deep machine learning.If we can describe it as a continuous function of n-dimensional Euclidean space, we can approximate it. We model a lot of phenomenon as a continuous function of n-dimensional Euclidean space. IBM's True North got 4096 cores, a million "neurons", 268 million programmable "synapses" and 5.4 billion transistors on one low power on demand chip designed to be stackable. And it gets around the Von Neumann bottleneck by not having a CPU by design. When faced with intractable problems we either finesse them or brute-force buffalo hump them. Sometime its an elegant buffalo hump.

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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18-04-2017, 08:48 AM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
(15-04-2017 10:16 AM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  
(14-04-2017 07:38 PM)Vera Wrote:  If I were a bear and I needed sheer idiocy to survive hibernation, this here would last me a good five or six winters, easy.

This is a real problem that science can't address. Philosophers and scientists wrestle with this question. Even Daniel Dennett has tried to take a stab in "Consciousness Explained". However, his book doesn't explain anything. If you like I can post my Symposium paper on the famous Mary Problem, a problem that plagues consciousness, so that you guys see one of the struggles.

He wrote that over 20 years ago. Try reading something more current.
You clearly don't understand what he wrote, try re-reading it.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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18-04-2017, 08:50 AM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
(15-04-2017 10:28 AM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  Where is the app for that? Hard ai has a long way to go...

So what. All that says is that it is difficult.
You seem to be making an argument from personal incredulity.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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18-04-2017, 08:56 AM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
(15-04-2017 10:58 AM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  
(15-04-2017 10:53 AM)JesseB Wrote:  Consciousness is emergent......

If it is emergent then how does it emerge? Let's say a train is going down the railway and steam emerges from the train is the steam emergent? How does something completely different emerge that seems like non physical "stuff" like ideas, motives, desires, feelings and sensations? Huh It seems to be a new sort of ontology, even a dualism that emerges.

You are confused. Dualism cannot emerge. Emergent properties are not separate things.

How does color emerge? Atoms have no color, yet collections of them do.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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18-04-2017, 09:01 AM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
(15-04-2017 11:34 AM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  To rein in pragmatism again: I believe there are mysteries to life still. Mysteries that are unwilling to make themselves known.

Now you're just being ass. Reifying mysteries. Facepalm

Quote:We can't impose truth on something that is unwilling.

And again. Facepalm

Quote:Instead, with pragmatism, we can look at the consequences and live accordingly to get on with the day. The freewill debate, the existence of god, consciousness, ect...

It's "etc.", but that is another clue to your sock-puppetry. Drinking Beverage

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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18-04-2017, 09:20 AM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
(15-04-2017 11:34 AM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  To rein in pragmatism again: I believe there are mysteries to life still.

(Springy G brandishes Clue-By-Four™ in less-than-friendly manner) Rein in yer own fargin' pragmatism and keep yer mitts off Mine. Some "mysteries" are simply not worth wasting one's time on.

I'm sorry, but your beliefs are much too silly to take seriously. Got anything else we can discuss?
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18-04-2017, 08:07 PM
RE: A Pragmatist's Guide to God
(13-04-2017 07:04 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  There are many reasons to believe in God, some of which aren't very good.
No, NONE of them are any good and there are no good reasons to believe in god. There is exactly one good reason to believe something exists and that is because a sufficient demonstration of that things existence has been made. All else is irrational.

(13-04-2017 07:04 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  However, there are patterns and designs that suggest there might be a god,
No there is not, not a single design or pattern naturally leads to a belief in god as the explanation unless that's what you are looking for. People believe in a god, see patterns, and assign them to that god because that makes sense to them.
It's entirely possible that there IS a god and that none of those patterns or designs have anything to do with a god.

(13-04-2017 07:04 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  We have to find a way to get on with the day without paralyzing hamletian indecision, don't we?
Sure and here is how: That which lacks sufficient evidence for it's existence can not be considered rationally to exist and is thus not worth daily consideration. Done.

(13-04-2017 08:06 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  Pragmatism looks at the indeterminable metaphysical problem of the existence of god...
I fail to see any kind of problem. Between having zero demonstrable evidence for a gods existence and the fact you can't even get a substantive definition of what a god even is or does outta anyone I'd say the "indeterminable metaphysical problem of existence" for god is no more pressing than it is for Snorgifils or Blakendorfgs or any other made up and ill-defined idea.

(13-04-2017 08:06 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  and tries to weave its way through empiricism and rationalism to come to decision on whether to believe or not by ways of the belief's consequences rather than its proof.
Right, and it does this because there is no evidence for a god so people have to come up with some other reason to justify their irrational beliefs in an age when accepting irrational beliefs are becoming more and more denigrated as a way of "thinking". Jumping through stupid hoops to maintain an irrational belief won't every be truly beneficial, as trying to deal with reality with a distorted view of reality is always going to be suboptimal.

Fortunately, we can test this idea by looking at the kind of world we had when belief was not just the norm but unquestioned and given free reign to largely do as it pleased. It was bloody horrible and held us back for centuries, and you can see a pretty striking correlation between a climb in the quality of life and the reigning in of religious belief.

Trying to interact with a system without an accurate understanding of how that system works will always yield lesser results than an accurate understanding will. This is why we don't allow sanitation workers to program our nuclear arsenal.

(13-04-2017 08:06 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  It doesn't try to prove the existence of god, instead it helps you weigh the conseqences if you did believe or not.

We have several thousand years worth of data that shows just how harmful the belief in god can be. I really don't see how this case can't be considered closed.

(13-04-2017 08:06 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  James believes that the spiritual life is one of the most important aspects to our humanity, and that religion is proof for this need of spirituality.
And I think he's wrong. People have a desire for answers, not for spirituality. This is why more and more as people become educated they stop being religious.


(13-04-2017 08:06 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  So the burning question is, is the pragmatic belief in god worthy of a principle in one's life or does it fall short.
It falls short in every possible way, and we would expect it too. Interacting with a system without an accurate understanding of how that system works will always yield lesser results.
The question is only important to individual people if they don't care about what reality actually is and/or actively seek to escape it.

(14-04-2017 06:24 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  Logic and common sense only gets us so far and at some point we have to answer the question if god exists or not or whether there is freewill or whether there is consciousness.
And we do this via experimentation and the scientific method. The god belief repeatedly and consistently fails to meet its burden of proof.

(14-04-2017 06:24 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  We can't prove any of these things without a doubt
Says who? There are many things that we can prove beyond a reasonable doubt so why are these special? Did you just pick a few things that haven't been "settled" in your opinion and declare them unprovable?


(14-04-2017 06:24 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  so it may be fruitful to look at the consequences of there belief and live accordingly.

I've answered this to my satisfaction enough.


(14-04-2017 06:29 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  But what is reality?
"the world or the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them."

(14-04-2017 06:29 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  Is there more to this world than what the ears and eyes pick up?
Sure and as our ability to investigate reality increases we will gain increased knowledge and THAT will be the time when belief in those things are rationally justified.

You know how we are NOT going to know if there is more to the world than what ears and eyes can pick up? By making shit up.

(14-04-2017 06:29 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  How far can science get in describing reality?
100% further than any other system as yet devised. 100%.


(14-04-2017 06:29 PM)Stephen Pedersen Wrote:  I have great reverence for science but,
Every single person on this forum that has ever said that has been lying. I don't believe that you do as I'm not convinced you have a proper grasp on what the scientific method is and why it works and why it's the only accurate measure of reality we have.

When valour preys on reason, it eats the sword it fights with.
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