A Question for S.T.Ranger
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14-06-2012, 03:56 PM (This post was last modified: 14-06-2012 07:05 PM by GirlyMan.)
RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
(13-06-2012 04:18 PM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  
(12-06-2012 06:04 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  That belief ain't nearly as universal as you make it out to be. All arguments for dualism, to date, are untenable. But I am always interested in hearing new ones.

First I would ask where these "arguments for dualism" come from, and if you might present them for consideration?

I've attached a decent enough summary from the lecture notes of a Philosophy of Mind class at Bristol. Not quite the same syllabus I studied at Maryland, but close enough.

Property dualism is more defensible than substance dualism, unfortunately it doesn't provide you with a defense for the postmortem preservation of identity which you (i.e. religious folk in general) so desperately seem to need. And here's a nice paper from a Phil professor at UNC which basically says property dualism ain't worth a shit either: Is Property Dualism Better Off than Substance Dualism?

Enjoy.


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As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
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14-06-2012, 05:59 PM
RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
(14-06-2012 03:56 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(13-06-2012 04:18 PM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  First I would ask where these "arguments for dualism" come from, and if you might present them for consideration?

I've attached a decent enough summary from the lecture notes of a Philosophy of Mind class at Bristol. Not quite the same syllabus I studied at Maryland, but close enough.

Property dualism is more defensible than substance dualism, unfortunately it doesn't provide you with a defense for the postmortem preservation of identity which you (i.e. religious folk in general) so desperately seem to need. And here's a nice paper from a Phil professor at UNC which basically says property dualism ain't worth a shit either: Is Property Dualism Better Off than Substance Dualism?

Enjoy.

Looked at some of the lecture notes...no wonder you are a skeptic! lol

Look, the second link would not come through, could you post it again? Surely it has to be more interesting (you really sat through something like this?).

I appreciate the links, though I would not really consider this to be the "dualism" of my belief system. I will be happy to talk about it with you though, as it seems to have impacted you in some way. As for the "dualism" I see taught in scripture, it presents the spirit realm as a separate "creation" if you will, a separate realm. Unseen to the visible eye, yet there all the same.

Yet it is not property dualism, obviously, spoken of in scripture, as scripture teaches the existance of man after death. Not to get off the subject (though it really is the heart of the subject) but life after death, while vague in the Old Testament, can certainly be seen. For example, there was a day of judgment expected, leaving one to conclude that it is necessary for those judged to exist after physical death...in order to be judged.

Quote:Property dualism is more defensible than substance dualism, unfortunately it doesn't provide you with a defense for the postmortem preservation of identity which you (i.e. religious folk in general) so desperately seem to need.

Just for the sake of argument I will ask why you would see this as "more defensible?" Given the fact that there is so much yet to learn through science, this would deny the possibility that science has made a conclusion yet there is more to be learned. As far as "desperately needing a post-mortem preservation of identity," you may be right about that. However, the alternative would be that you and I are nothing more than organic machines. If this is the case, then I guess it really does not matter what people do, right? Do we get upset when machines malfunction and destroy each other? For instance, if a parking brake fails on a car, which happens to be parked on a steep hill, and it rolls down the hill and totals another car, do we hold the car responsible? But wait, you may say, that is different, a car has to have a person in it to work.

And that is my point: if a person is simply a vehicle driven by electro-chemical process, why would we hold anyone responsible for anything?

We could alter the analogy to a plane complete with a computer driven capability. The pilot puts it on autopilot and grabs a nap. While he sleeps the programming malfunctions an the plane crashes into a building, killing several other computers in the process. I don't mention the people in the building, or the pilot, because they are after all, just machines too, right?

Now I will have to wait to see your views as one that has actually studied this in detail, but it seems to me that property dualism makes us simply a substance that has resulting experience, much like a computer could be viewed. And that cannot be seen in the teaching of scripture, and it was not this that I was referring to, and I mistook your mention of dualism to be a reference to the body/spirit dualism (not to be confused with Gnostic dualism which seems to be integral to the philosophical aspects of this issue) that would generally be disccussed concerning life after death.

And while substance dualism may come closer to that which is taught in scripture, I think it still misses the mark. I would agree that spirit and body are of separate "substance," the two making one substance, so to speak, meaning the person, which if one is deprived of the other there is an immediate change, much like separating chemical coupounds, though it would be a far more complex separation, and unlike chemicals, the separation is not just from each other and they exist in the same area, though separated, but, because the spirit is not physical matter of this creation, it separates in a way in which the physical components remain in the physical realm, while the spiritual element returns to the spiritual realm.

One thing substance dualism does not address is where, if the mind exists after death, does the mind go? Or perhaps it does, and my ignorance of these philosophies has just not encountered them/it. But you can better tell me.

And just to confuse matters more, there is the view that man is a three-part being, that of body, soul, and spirit. The soul corresponding more to substance dualism, I think, as it is defined by some as the "seat of the emotions," whereas the spirit may be viewed as the life source, so to speak. Given the fact that soul and spirit are used interchangabley in scripture, it seems to me that these two aspects of man must be closer to the relationship by definition to substance dualism than the body is to either, though the two are not distinguished in what I have read so far.

Okay, going to let you correct me where I am wrong or just exposing my ignorance in your chosen topic. It is intersting, to be sure, but I would need to look into this a little more to better understand it. You can help this process by letting me know your thoughts and what it is that you took away from the course.

GTY
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14-06-2012, 07:45 PM (This post was last modified: 14-06-2012 08:30 PM by GirlyMan.)
RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
(14-06-2012 05:59 PM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  Look, the second link would not come through, could you post it again? Surely it has to be more interesting ...

It's less interesting. Dunno what's up with the link, get it from dude's academic home page if you're interested enough.


(14-06-2012 05:59 PM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  ... (you really sat through something like this?). ...

I was digging that shit all the way up until ManlyGirl got pregnant in my Junior Year and Computer Science suddenly became a much more practical major. ... But I still dig that shit. Big Grin

As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
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14-06-2012, 08:17 PM
RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
(14-06-2012 09:34 AM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  1-Most who hate Christians know very little about the basis of the Christian faith, which is of course the Bible. What little they do know does not correspond to the actual writings of scripture, and they are forced to discredit textual evidence which is actually studied and accepted by scholars that speciallize in the field.

False statements are made, which is to be expected, but a recent development on this very forum shows open discussion of this tact in their proselytization efforts. And what is very sad is that they are unaware how shallow this is to the reasonable person.

2-Atheism is...a religious pursuit. It qualifies in definition as well as practice. The irony here is...a professed hatred for those that are religious by those that exhibit a religiosity that far exceeds the nominal Christian in zeal is unknown to them, making them byfar...their own worst enemy. Imagine, being that which one hates the most. But, to be fair, this is also identified in the lives of Christians, who, while trying to show the love of Christ to the world, fall on their faces and exhibit hatred also. While pointing to the atheist and despising them for their sin...they sin. Thus, for the believer who has the most basic grasp on biblical instruction, they also become that which they hate. On the plus side for the truly born-again, God reveals this to the sinner, whereby he is able to identify and correct this behavior.

3-For the religious atheist, there is exhibited a zeal born by hatred that leads them to, at times, the same mentality that we see in many leaders of cults. Development of a messiah complex is a real danger to the over-zealous, which may lead to production of literature meant to "save" individuals from whatever the focus of this individual's hatred is bent upon.
Those statements are simply not true for most atheists.
  1. We don't hate Christians. We disbelieve all religions.
  2. Calling atheism a religion is like calling 'off' a TV channel.
  3. The zeal exhibited is for rationality instead of mysticism.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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14-06-2012, 08:23 PM
RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
(14-06-2012 05:59 PM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  And that is my point: if a person is simply a vehicle driven by electro-chemical process, why would we hold anyone responsible for anything?

From theory theory to simulation theory to dynamic systems theory. Here's a bit of the last: http://sonoma.academia.edu/TeedRockwell/...nd_reading All of which boils down to socialization, mutual cooperation, and the assumption that you are like me. You don't need a creator in this equation, you need a tiger. That's where this stuff comes from. If it's every monkey for himself, tiger gets fed. But if we use you as bait... Big Grin

Relax. We won't let tiger eat you. Really. Thumbsup

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15-06-2012, 07:56 AM
RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
(14-06-2012 07:45 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(14-06-2012 05:59 PM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  Look, the second link would not come through, could you post it again? Surely it has to be more interesting ...

It's less interesting. Dunno what's up with the link, get it from dude's academic home page if you're interested enough.


(14-06-2012 05:59 PM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  ... (you really sat through something like this?). ...

I was digging that shit all the way up until ManlyGirl got pregnant in my Junior Year and Computer Science suddenly became a much more practical major. ... But I still dig that shit. Big Grin

I tried, but it does not impress me as it does you. I will look through some more of it for the sake of gaining insight to how this is viewed by some, though.

And, "Manlygirl," now that is funny.

GTY
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15-06-2012, 09:06 AM
RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
(14-06-2012 08:17 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(14-06-2012 09:34 AM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  1-Most who hate Christians know very little about the basis of the Christian faith, which is of course the Bible. What little they do know does not correspond to the actual writings of scripture, and they are forced to discredit textual evidence which is actually studied and accepted by scholars that speciallize in the field.

False statements are made, which is to be expected, but a recent development on this very forum shows open discussion of this tact in their proselytization efforts. And what is very sad is that they are unaware how shallow this is to the reasonable person.

2-Atheism is...a religious pursuit. It qualifies in definition as well as practice. The irony here is...a professed hatred for those that are religious by those that exhibit a religiosity that far exceeds the nominal Christian in zeal is unknown to them, making them byfar...their own worst enemy. Imagine, being that which one hates the most. But, to be fair, this is also identified in the lives of Christians, who, while trying to show the love of Christ to the world, fall on their faces and exhibit hatred also. While pointing to the atheist and despising them for their sin...they sin. Thus, for the believer who has the most basic grasp on biblical instruction, they also become that which they hate. On the plus side for the truly born-again, God reveals this to the sinner, whereby he is able to identify and correct this behavior.

3-For the religious atheist, there is exhibited a zeal born by hatred that leads them to, at times, the same mentality that we see in many leaders of cults. Development of a messiah complex is a real danger to the over-zealous, which may lead to production of literature meant to "save" individuals from whatever the focus of this individual's hatred is bent upon.
Those statements are simply not true for most atheists.

I would change this to "all atheists" and be able to agree. However, just as the caricaturization of Christians is seen in atheist circles and we can say that this is not true for all of them, we also take that to the consideration that genuine Christian character is not true of all of them, thus creating a vicious circle, if you know what I mean.

In other words, there are going to be nominal adherents to every religion.

Now, before you get upset about the thought that atheism is a religion replete with many characteristics of religion, consider what it is I am pointing out. As I have in the past shown by pointing out that atheism (and again we would not apply this to ALL atheists, even as we would not apply particular patterns of behavior to ALL Christians) follows closely the definition of "religion," coupled with the efforts of even some here.

The simple point I am trying to make is that for SOME atheists, we see exactly the same behavioral patterns and even efforts that ironically...are the very reasons why many atheists have rejected Christianity. If you would care to discuss this, I'll be glad to. Doesn't mean you have to accept it, all I ask is that you examine some of the points which religion (which I also am opposed to, though from a different perspective, perhaps) and atheism share.

Not all atheists hate "religion" or Christianity, just as not all religious (even among modern "Christendom") hate atheists. But for those that are we might place in a category of "zealous," usually it is not too hard to identify hatred, and perhaps list that among the motivations for the efforts they are engaged in.

(14-06-2012 08:17 PM)Chas Wrote:  
  1. We don't hate Christians. We disbelieve all religions.

Some of you don't hate Christians. Some of you do. Some Christians display hatred towards atheists. It's the same on both sides. You have those that are apathetic, sympathetic, hostile, and loving. It is usually dependant upon the person, though we have to factor in that even the meanest of character can display kindness and the soutest of character can at times lose self control. So, we err when we categorize without personal knowledge of the individual.

For instance, from both perspectives we might find someone that has gone through tragedy resulting in his belief system. If we are unaware of what that person has gone through, we have little insight to the individual himself. Tragedy has a way of resulting in both faith as well as loss of faith. So we cannot make assumptions or presume to know an individual based upon a profession of...anything.

(14-06-2012 08:17 PM)Chas Wrote:  
  • Calling atheism a religion is like calling 'off' a TV channel.

  • No, it's not, really.

    If it were viewed upon the characteristics which classify something a religion, most would admit the similarities.

    Furthermore, it is not possible to say "I don't believe," and that not be classified as a "belief." Most athiests believe just as strongly that there is no god as I believe that there is.

    Example: let's say that I believe there is a Tree of Wisdom that grows in a secluded part of the world, and prophecy tells us that it will be found one day." Up until this point you were neutral, therefore the "TV was off," but, now you make a decision as to whether I am a nut or if there might be some reason for me not to be discounted. You will either decide to believe it, or not. Both would be classified as your belief. You are no longer neutral.

    Another example would be, "I strongly believe that there are no fairies." It is not a matter of neutrality, or that I am unaware of this belief that some people have. My belief system actively denies the existance of fairies. So it isn't a matter of neutrality, nor of unawareness, that is simply part of my belief system, just as I do not believe that fallen angels can be redeemed. Now my conclusions on these matters are subject to a condition: if you can bring me a picture of a fairy, or, if you can show me from the primary source of the basis of my belief that fallen angels can be redeemed, I will be perfectly happy to change what I believe. And while I am confident that my belief is reasonable, I also have to admit that my own fallibilty creates the possibility that I am wrong about both. Within that example remains one fact that I, and no reasonable person would exclude: I base what I believe according to available information. I cannot dogmatically say that science will not one unlock the means to view another dimension and verify that there are in fact fairies, and, if this does happen, we will all clamor that these beings be...renamed. (little bit of humor there)

    Okay, just rambling.

    (14-06-2012 08:17 PM)Chas Wrote:  
  • The zeal exhibited is for rationality instead of mysticism.

  • I can understand that. However, just as is common in nominal "Christians," who believe what they believe primarily based upon what they are taught, how many nominal atheists do the very same thing. If a source seems credible, or tickles our fancies (sp?), it is embraced without much personal research, because it is suitable for our belief system, and, hey...they wouldn't be teaching it if it isn't true,right? I mean, the men we hold in admiration are above reproach, right?

    Now consider some examples taken from this forum, which, by the way, differs very little in composition to most, if you ask me. There is a range of characters, from nominal to fanatical, but, each in his/her own way contribute to the belief system of the others. Whether it is simply agreement, or perhaps instructional, the primary focus is not just a neutrality, but the strengthening of the particular belief system that is atheism. If one was neutral, it is doubtful they would be here. If I were neutral to my belief system, it is not just doubtful, but likely that I would not be here.

    Now as I said before, there are similarities between atheism and religion which cannot be denied. One that I will emphasize at this time would be the matter of hostility toward Christianity. And while you may deny hostility, and this may be true, you cannot deny this hostility exists in some atheists, even as it exists among certain Christians. Now I ask you...what is the basis for that hostility? That is all I ask the individual to consider. Sometimes that hostility is justified, as I myself can get angry with others of even similar theological position. But, recognize it, and examine it. I don't think anyone would claim that hostility is a good thing in our lives. Human nature can lead some to harbor anger for some event, some person, some statement, but how often does this person analyze this anger and decide, "You know what? It just isn't worth it to stew over this?"

    Okay, so hostility towards Christians. It is understandable at times, but, it should be kept in mind that Christians are as diverse as anyone else. It is necessary to draw conclusions based upon available data, so I would suggest that if hostility is to be the norm, as it is for certain groups, at least be fair and direct that hostility toawrds those that have earned it. And I am not saying this as a plea for my own consideration, because I fully understand that opposing viewpoints are a fast-track to hostility, and can say that it is a small price to pay to dialogue with those of opposing views.

    Okay, sorry for the length, seeya.

    GTY
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    15-06-2012, 11:14 AM (This post was last modified: 15-06-2012 11:20 AM by S.T. Ranger.)
    RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
    (14-06-2012 08:23 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
    (14-06-2012 05:59 PM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  And that is my point: if a person is simply a vehicle driven by electro-chemical process, why would we hold anyone responsible for anything?

    From theory theory to simulation theory to dynamic systems theory. Here's a bit of the last: http://sonoma.academia.edu/TeedRockwell/...nd_reading All of which boils down to socialization, mutual cooperation, and the assumption that you are like me. You don't need a creator in this equation, you need a tiger. That's where this stuff comes from. If it's every monkey for himself, tiger gets fed. But if we use you as bait... Big Grin

    Relax. We won't let tiger eat you. Really. Thumbsup

    Sorry, House, I missed this.

    First, let me just say that there is not a tiger in the world that compares to the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. So no worries there, mate.

    Secondly, the link would not pull up, and my computer has been doing some funny stuff, which is a concern for me, as I worry about viruses and such. If you would be so kind as to post it in your response (whatever you might feel relevant), it would be appreciated.

    Last, I would look at this:

    Quote:From theory theory to simulation theory to dynamic systems theory. Here's a bit of the last:

    All of which boils down to socialization, mutual cooperation, and the assumption that you are like me.

    And how many monkeys or tigers have contemplated this? Has science been able to determine a difference between the brain activity of animals and mankind?

    Do we not see socialization, mutual cooperation, and the assumption (or should I say the necessity, that like animals interact, at least, for some species) of similarity? Do you feel that you know the path of evolution for a specific animal, or, is this theory applied to that extent?

    Quote:You don't need a creator in this equation, you need a tiger.

    I would have to get you to explain this a bit more, so I can understand your point. I guess I get the gist from the next statement, but it may help if you expand a bit, so I can get your expression rather than that of the link.

    Quote:That's where this stuff comes from. If it's every monkey for himself, tiger gets fed. But if we use you as bait...

    Oh, so there's a push to start throwing Christians to the lions again, eh?

    Just kidding, it would be awfully expensive to import enough lions to accomplish the task. Just kidding again.


    Theory theory: I would not reject this as plausible.

    Simulation theory: on the surface, I would agree with the basis. Some lessons are better learned when accompanied by sensory stimulation, such as never playing with fire again because one gets burned.

    Dynamic systems theory: and on this one, I would ask what you personally view to be the future state of the human mind when the body expires?

    GTY
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    15-06-2012, 12:25 PM
    RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
    (15-06-2012 11:14 AM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  Dynamic systems theory: and on this one, I would ask what you personally view to be the future state of the human mind when the body expires?
    You seem to think it illogical to believe that life just ends and nothing continues?

    PS I will answer your other post sometime, I'm just not up for lots of typing right now - one liners ftw.
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    15-06-2012, 12:48 PM
    RE: A Question for S.T.Ranger
    (15-06-2012 12:25 PM)morondog Wrote:  
    (15-06-2012 11:14 AM)S.T. Ranger Wrote:  Dynamic systems theory: and on this one, I would ask what you personally view to be the future state of the human mind when the body expires?
    You seem to think it illogical to believe that life just ends and nothing continues?

    Not at all. In fact, I believe this to be the case with most life found in creation.

    Just not man.

    Of course, my view is biased. I believe that mankind, not all life, was created in the image and likeness of God (the "image" and "likeness" open for debate). We are told there are differences among the "bodies" of creation, and because I view scripture to be divinely inspired, I believe that simple concept.

    So it is completely reasonable to consider that the brain activity of an animal, when it ceases, represents the cessation of existance for the animal. Now I would ask in regards to this, if animals and man are the same substance, meaning, they are made of the same materials and the result of the same process, then for both the demands of either dualism must be the same, right?

    Which means, just as in the example of our being organic computers, we are really no better than animals, right? Just as we are no better than computers. So if this is the case, when will we see computer law? When we we see advocates for "elderly computers?" How dare we just throw away old computers thereby placing ourselves as the superior being on this planet? How dare we think to eat a hamburger, seeing that we are, after all, really just made of the same materials? Cows have brain activity as well, this can be monitored with the same machines that detect such activity in humans.

    Of course, that is a bit silly, and I admit that, but, the basic principle applies. And the result is an attack on how precious mankind is, and the fact that there is something different about mankind that is not found in nature. Those that place mankind in the category of animal in the truest sense, meaning, those who actually do believe that animals have just as much right to life as mankind (and I agree with this for the most part, I love animals) to the point where an animal should not die that a man might live...well, I just cannot understand this.

    (15-06-2012 12:25 PM)morondog Wrote:  PS I will answer your other post sometime, I'm just not up for lots of typing right now - one liners ftw.

    Okay, just don't forget me on this...lol.

    GTY
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