An Atheist Theory of God
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04-04-2012, 07:44 PM (This post was last modified: 04-04-2012 07:49 PM by Starcrash.)
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
(04-04-2012 04:06 AM)EBTX Wrote:  
(04-04-2012 01:11 AM)Logisch Wrote:  A couple questions for you that I felt were interesting, but not explained (to play devil's advocate here):

- What makes you think we are nodes that connect collectively to this super being?
- How is it that this superbeing connects to us? What medium would such a being connect?
- Where does the comparison of "dial up vs dsl" come into play? Interactions with one person to another are generally at the speed at which our senses can conduct them, this is extremely quick. If this being is to "connect" to and understand everyone, how would we compare our senses to that of a being and why would we assume this?
Thank you for your answer. That's what I was hoping for in this forum ... cold (but wholesome) rationality. As I said, I've been an atheist for ~50 years but would accept the possibility of a "Supreme Being" ... if and only if ... I can find his physical location.

Let me give you an example of an experience that gives me pause (as regards the nature of consciousness).
About 30 years ago, I chanced upon two uniformed teams of ladies playing softball in a park. They were playing fast pitch underhand softball (that's girl-fast). What intrigued me was that the pitcher was about 10 months pregnant ... I mean ready to pop any second. She even ran out a grounder to first base and the baby bounced terribly. It hurt my belly to watch :o(

I was behind a four foot high chain link fence maybe 12 feet off third base. Suddenly, I knew with absolute certainty that the next pitch would be hit right to me. So, I put up my right hand, where the ball would come, and then the pregnant gal pitched the ball ... then, the batter hit a curving, looping liner that came straight to me ... which I caught easily as my hand was waiting there, fingers at the ready. Neither the pitcher nor the batter looked in my direction at any time as far as I could tell.

However, I had to move my right hand approximately 9 inches up and to my right in order to catch the ball (that rules out precognition since it's not completely accurate). And ... I was surprised when I caught the ball to find that it was very fuzzy and not smooth. This accounted for the extra curvature resulting in the displacement of the ball by 9 inches (Bernoulli effect). I threw the ball back to the pregnant pitcher in one fairly fluid motion. Needless to say, I started to puzzle this out right then.

Because I could not resolve the "fuzziness" of the ball from the distance I was watching the game from, I finally attributed this incident to "subconscious calculation" on my part alone. And this was consistent with my surprise at the condition of the ball (which actually spun in my hand as I caught it). That is, I couldn't see the 'fuzz' so it didn't enter into my calculation.

This is a trivial event. But anyone with reasonable intellectual experience can see the enormity of the implications. Our subconscious processing power ... inherent in anyone's mind (taking myself as typical) ... must be perhaps, fully 6? orders of magnitude greater than anything I had previously guessed. And ... for this to be true ... we must be able to "read" what people will do next (and in succession) from their faces? ... body language? ... what?

I once had a go-round with James Randi in the early days of the internet (when he was email accessible) about the validity of anecdotal evidence. He took the position that it was pretty much worthless while I took the position that it was potentially deadly to ignore it, i.e. we should accept what others say as true, out of good will, until and unless the information proves untrue (but not necessarily to the point of acting on that information). I think he would say of the above "experience" that I was cherry picking my experiences and putting an impossible reason to it ... and that it was "just chance" and nothing more.

But it was most certainly not chance. I've had a few other such trivial occurrences ... not as dramatic ... all the same theme.
1) sudden "knowing" what was to happen,
2) feeling of absolute certainty,
3) the thing happened with ~99% accuracy.
At other times, I never have the conditions 1 or 2 ... at all ... ever. I guess things and sometimes get them right or wrong just like anyone else. The above experience is in another category altogether. I'm not being visionary here or mystical ... just reportorial. I admit this is anecdotal evidence of "something" unknown, but I am very experienced and know fully what I am saying. If a pilot with 80,000 hours of flight time said "I saw something up there that's 'unknown' to our science" ... most people would (should) take it seriously.

I am logically forced to conclude that ... there is some information transfer between brains that is enormous in complexity ... and ... since I don't subscribe to any mystical connection (vibrations? ;o) ... that the transfer is by sight and sound. And ... because this transfer must occur ... we may conjecture (but not prove at this time) that the sum of all human connections of this nature ... may ... constitute ... another conscious entity cohabiting the planet ... not infinite in knowledge and not existing beyond the confines of man.

To try to go further ... moves away from primary speculation into secondary and tertiary where the likelihood of being correct decreases as x^n where n is the speculation level. So, if I hazard into greater depths ... I may end up in a rubber room with Nietzsche and Cantor ;o)

As a direct deduction though ... the rate of thought of such a "distributed" entity would necessarily be slow if it used sight and sound to transfer information around. I mean much slower than us, where the internal brain connections are proximate.

Thanks again for your insight and patience.
First, I watched the video. Yes, it was dull, and worse it was hard to follow. I had to watch it twice to get your point, and even then not everything was relevant to it. The video was nice to look at, though.

You don't have to proclaim loudly that you're an atheist and just playing devil's advocate. It's true that some of us may have knee-jerk reactions upon hearing a person define himself or herself as atheist/theist, but it doesn't logically matter, and an argument doesn't stand or fall depending on the person presenting it.

You assert two premises and don't explain why you assert them (and call them fundamental on top of that... why?). I understand the first one seems to align with what scientists know about electrons and energy levels --- so I agree that everything with a form interacts with everything else that has a form. But why would the inverse be true? This counters what scientists know, because there are a lot of small particles that behave in strange ways, as if something was interacting with them even when nothing's there. Experiments with electrons being observed/not being observed are good examples of this. Besides, even if it is "fundamentally" true that something with an attribute does an action, not everything that does that action has that attribute.


I felt that you were equivocating "consciousness" as something possessed by all living things, rather than by everything with a mind ... and maybe you even suggested that parts of a mind had a consciousness, but again that seems to be assuming the premise that I didn't agree with above. Perhaps you also equivocated "entity " as meaning "thing". But I'm not sure about either of these because it was hard to follow every word.

And finally you appear to be making an Argument from Ignorance. In your example that I am replying to above, you've simply assumed what caused your "precognition" without demonstrating causality. While you make it sound like James Randi simply "wrote you off" because he didn't feel that personal experience was a part of evidence gathering (it is), I think he wrote you off because you didn't view the evidence scientifically --- you made a hypothesis about the cause of your experience, and then jumped right to concluding that your hypothesis was true without further testing.

If you really believe that you have cognition, you should put it to a test. Every time you believe that something will happen, write it down and then record the result. MAKE SURE YOU WRITE IT DOWN EVERY TIME, and make sure that you start writing before the event happens. Otherwise, it's fair to say that your experiences are the result of confirmation bias (simply forgetting all the times you "expected something" and it didn't happen, or by dismissing feelings of cognition that don't come true as "not real feelings after all"). It happens to the best of us, which is why we rely on the scientific method.

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04-04-2012, 09:27 PM
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
Conformation bias; that's what I meant by horsefeathers. Big Grin

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04-04-2012, 09:41 PM
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
I find that you make some errors in your reasoning but I don't have time at this point to go into full detail on everything I would like to so in the meantime I would suggest you look up "the singularity" it's a concept of advanced computing that this argument asserts.

At this time we have no reason to think the singularity is a definite possibility and until we do your argument doesn't hold a lot of merit.

Hopefully I can go into greater detail if need be at a later time.
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05-04-2012, 01:39 AM (This post was last modified: 05-04-2012 02:18 AM by EBTX.)
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
(04-04-2012 03:37 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  What is the relation of all this to the bible? (you did mention the b word).
What, exactly are your "good points" in the bible you refer to?
What, exactly, are the poor atheist arguments you refer to?
Why do you need to postulate an entity (god) more complex than humans? Sorry if I missed the "big moment" (?the point of the video)...but...I missed it. Please fill me (?us) in.
The Bible is a very dangerous document. It has caused the deaths of millions and the ruination of even more lives. Hence, I take it very seriously as something to be dissected in the same spirit as that "thing" in Aliens that clamps on your face and puts a seed in your belly. However, it also says some comforting things which is why it remains among us.

The "good" things in the Bible are about the importance of philosophical ideals. Religions generally agree that 1) man is important 2) that whether you are good or evil is important. What is good or evil is a bone of contention.

A poor atheist argument is one that makes sport of religious principles. As a general rule, if you are making fun of something, you are on weak logical ground. Think of kids throwing stones at people then running behind their father or mother for protection. Religion may look funny from logical angles ... but it will kill you ... literally ... funny, it is not. The Christian fundamentalists now desire to take us to war with Iran ... regardless of the consequences ... figuring it's the "end times". I'm not laughing, though the situation is patently ridiculous.

Another example of a bad atheist argument would be ... "If there is a God, why is there so much suffering visited upon the innocent?" ... or ... "Why is the will of God indistinguishable from chance?" < (one of my favorites). They're not good arguments because one can say that we are being put to a "test" ... which is just what a superior being would do.

Look at the fable of Adam and Eve. God puts the tree in the garden of Eden and tells 'em not to "eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge". Obviously (to anyone with a brain), the tree is there for expressly that purpose. God wants them to eat the fruit. They don't ... so ... he appears to Eve as a serpent to encourage her to take the plunge. After they eat, he has a reason to pretend to be pissed off and chuck them out of the garden. So ... now they're on their own. They don't appeal to God for forgiveness because he's ... pissed off.

Now, they have to get up off their asses and think and do work. That is, they must now fulfill the purpose of their design ... (God's design). You are supposed to be an independent, thinking being ... not relying on God to help you ... i.e. a good atheist. If you achieve this state, you are now a worthy ... and interesting ... companion to God. And ... in my speculative video ... you are an integral part of God ... a node in His brain. If he can get all those nodes functioning at maximum efficiency ... he can get into ... "the zone". The distributed entity of my video then experiences the "fulness of being" that is reserved to those who are not at war with themselves.

Thus, if all of us were decent, independent, thoughtful beings ... God would be the better for it. Remember, the distributed entity that I'm postulating is not infinite. He's in the same boat as us ... he's just a lot bigger.

Ultimately, I wish to postulate that consciousness is "scalable". We are units in a larger being and that being is a unit in another being and so on. This may not seem at all obvious. It may even seem idiotic at present. But ... if consciousness is (as I speculate it may be) ... a phase space construct ... there is no reason for it not to be scalable. In phase space, consciousness would be the meaning of ... and logically congruent with ... the electro-mechanical functions of the brain. That is, there may be a collective phase space construct for the universe (out to the Hubble radius) of which we are just a part.

[Check out James Gleick's book "Chaos" for a good explanation of phase space]



(04-04-2012 03:21 AM)DLJ Wrote:  If consciousness exists at the macro / newtonian level then perhaps it should exist at the cosmic levels and the micro / quantum levels. But I see no evidence of this.

Conversely, if it does not exist at the quantum and cosmic levels, I start to question the nature of consciousness at the macro level rather than go for conscious super-being. Would there also be a conscious quantum-being?

On the other hand, if anyone can give me proof that the super-entity called culture has a consciousness, then I too will start believing in higher powers which (in a drunken or depressed state) I might even be tempted to call "god". :-)
I can't change my music or voice or anything to suit an audience because I make the thing just for me ... as an expression of my identity. I have no ability to alter or displace the ideas of others and so ... no longer try (from experience). If anyone learns anything from one of my videos, it is only because they had nothing in that place to begin with ;o)
------------------------------
There wouldn't be any consciousness at the quantum level (as we could perceive it) for lack of information. Lots of "stuff" is required for human level consciousness. But ... an electron "knows" what it's supposed to do ... somehow.

1 bit of information ... may ... = 1 bit of consciousness.

At the macro level, the consciousness that I speculate to exist ... would be slower operating while more extensive in content.
Macro = slow and information rich
Micro = fast and information poor

I can't prove that "culture" has a consciousness. I simply suspect that it does. A more interesting thought would be ... what is the information carrying capacity of that being?

We each create in our minds an avatar of every person we know. The more familiar we are with that person ... the more realistic is the avatar. Hence, we can communicate with that avatar and imagine what the real person would say in a given situation. I recall a man who lamented that when he died, his wife would be truly dead for then there would be no one left who knew her. He kept here alive as that avatar in his mind.

So, how much of an individual might survive death in the form of an avatar in the mind of the supposed distributed entity? We know for certain that some part of us survives death by incorporation into the culture ... else, culture would remain unchanged over millenial periods.
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05-04-2012, 05:36 AM
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
I don't have much to say about this (in a sense that would add up something to the discussion) except that I gave up watching the video after 3 minutes because you taaaalk soooo slooooow it's mind-numbing.

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05-04-2012, 05:48 AM (This post was last modified: 05-04-2012 06:02 AM by Thomas.)
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
(04-04-2012 12:35 AM)EBTX Wrote:  
(03-04-2012 02:00 PM)Thomas Wrote:  There is no justifiable reason to believe that this is true; therefore, it is not rational to believe that it is.

No matter how hard you try to logically prove the existence of a god you can't, because he doesn't exist.
There is always a logical counter to the logical claim.
This is a speculation ... not a belief. Would it be rational, in your opinion, to speculate on the subject?

You say that no one can prove the existence of God ... because he doesn't exist. That's not a logical statement because you are giving the non-existence of God as a postulate. A postulate is an unproven 'given', accepted by the participants in a debate for the sake of continuing the argument. The starting point of an argument cannot be the negation of the opponent's position.

That there is a logical counter to any logical claim (in this regard) is only a general point of view.

Here's your logicall fallacy:
There is no proof that God doesn't exist; therefore it is rational to believe that he does.
You claim that "god is in the details", "god is the stuff that atoms are made of" falls under this fallacy.
Fallacy: There is no proof that God is not the energy the drives the universe; therefore it is rational to believe he is.
This is not just an "opinion" or a "point of view", it rational thinking versus just making stuff up and sticking to it because it can't be proven not true, while you can't prove that it is true.

I claim that god does not exist because there is absolutely zero proof that he does, the same way I claim that invisible pink unicorns do not exist because there is absolutely no proof thet they do. Don't try the "there are things that you just know are true" line of BS thank you. No Proof = No Existence. Speculation = Waste of Time.

To directly answer your thread's title: An atheist's theory of god
Answer: God doesn't exist

The old gods are dead, let's invent some new ones before something really bad happens.
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05-04-2012, 06:06 AM
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
(03-04-2012 02:25 AM)EBTX Wrote:  Atheist (extremely experienced > me) ... vs ... Atheist (experienced > you)
I musta missed this yesterday - that's theist talk right there, that I'm better than you bullshit. And whatever experience you have in such munificent quantities, sure ain't in marketing.

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06-04-2012, 01:11 PM (This post was last modified: 06-04-2012 01:55 PM by EBTX.)
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
(05-04-2012 05:48 AM)Thomas Wrote:  Here's your logicall fallacy:
There is no proof that God doesn't exist; therefore it is rational to believe that he does.
You claim that "god is in the details", "god is the stuff that atoms are made of" falls under this fallacy.
Fallacy: There is no proof that God is not the energy the drives the universe; therefore it is rational to believe he is.
It's not really possible to discuss anything with a person who projects his own ideas into the minds of others.
You claim that I said ... your quotes ... "god is in the details". That's your statement not mine.
What you claim I've said is in fact ... out of your own mind.

PS ... If you post to this thread again, don't expect an answer from me.



Quote:1) .. You assert two premises and don't explain why you assert them (and call them fundamental on top of that... why?). I understand the first one seems to align with what scientists know about electrons and energy levels --- so I agree that everything with a form interacts with everything else that has a form. But why would the inverse be true? This counters what scientists know, because there are a lot of small particles that behave in strange ways, as if something was interacting with them even when nothing's there.

2) ... and maybe you even suggested that parts of a mind had a consciousness, but again that seems to be assuming the premise that I didn't agree with above.

3) In your example that I am replying to above, you've simply assumed what caused your "precognition" without demonstrating causality.

4) While you make it sound like James Randi simply "wrote you off" because he didn't feel that personal experience was a part of evidence gathering (it is), I think he wrote you off because you didn't view the evidence scientifically --- you made a hypothesis about the cause of your experience, and then jumped right to concluding that your hypothesis was true without further testing.

5) If you really believe that you have cognition, you should put it to a test. Every time you believe that something will happen, write it down and then record the result. MAKE SURE YOU WRITE IT DOWN EVERY TIME, and make sure that you start writing before the event happens. Otherwise, it's fair to say that your experiences are the result of confirmation bias (simply forgetting all the times you "expected something" and it didn't happen, or by dismissing feelings of cognition that don't come true as "not real feelings after all"). It happens to the best of us, which is why we rely on the scientific method.
1) Excellent observation ... and true. I did not go into that in the video because it would have been a digression. The two fundamentals are indeed fundamental but MUST be violated ... somehow ... in order for existence "to be". That is, without some sort of "absolute chance", there can be no relative movement or development in the universe because for every logical statement there is an inverse. So, to take the universe out of perfect symmetry, there must be a causeless 'dice roll' of some sort. Nevertheless ... at the macro-level, there must be a cause associated with every interaction.

2) Yes. I assert that parts of the brain have consciousness which when assembled form a single consciousness. At some point, if you cut it up small enough, the attribute "consciousness" must necessarily disappear.

3) That's the point. I CAN'T demonstrate causality. I'm purely speculating. I ASSUME causality and go looking for the cause of the incident.

4) Mr. Randi wrote me off because he refused to accept my example ;o)
Like this ... "There is a tsunami coming ... move to high ground" - (radio warning). This is anecdotal evidence because somebody says they saw it. I averred that one should, in this instance, accept the anecdotal evidence and go to higher ground. He denied this entire class of anecdotal evidence.

5) It would be pointless to write down these instances because there are only a handfull. As I said, this 'class of experience' is accompanied by total certainty that they will occur. The experience ... "total certainty" ... is easily recognizable when it occurs. There's nothing to cogitate on at the statistical level ... no graph to make. If I put into this class ... general "hunches" ... it would just muddy the water. Putting "certainty" with "hunches" ... explains ... the phenomenon by putting some oak trees with a forest of birch trees and and calling it all ... just ... "the forest". And ... there is no gradual transition from hunch to certainty ... it's a huge difference ... there are no steps between the two.

Thank you for thinking before you replied. I appreciate the time it takes ... and I don't expect agreement. ;o)
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06-04-2012, 10:40 PM
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
(05-04-2012 01:39 AM)EBTX Wrote:  
(04-04-2012 03:37 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  What is the relation of all this to the bible? (you did mention the b word).
What, exactly are your "good points" in the bible you refer to?
What, exactly, are the poor atheist arguments you refer to?
Why do you need to postulate an entity (god) more complex than humans? Sorry if I missed the "big moment" (?the point of the video)...but...I missed it. Please fill me (?us) in.
The Bible is a very dangerous document. It has caused the deaths of millions and the ruination of even more lives. Hence, I take it very seriously as something to be dissected in the same spirit as that "thing" in Aliens that clamps on your face and puts a seed in your belly. However, it also says some comforting things which is why it remains among us.

The "good" things in the Bible are about the importance of philosophical ideals. Religions generally agree that 1) man is important 2) that whether you are good or evil is important. What is good or evil is a bone of contention.

A poor atheist argument is one that makes sport of religious principles. As a general rule, if you are making fun of something, you are on weak logical ground. Think of kids throwing stones at people then running behind their father or mother for protection. Religion may look funny from logical angles ... but it will kill you ... literally ... funny, it is not. The Christian fundamentalists now desire to take us to war with Iran ... regardless of the consequences ... figuring it's the "end times". I'm not laughing, though the situation is patently ridiculous.

Another example of a bad atheist argument would be ... "If there is a God, why is there so much suffering visited upon the innocent?" ... or ... "Why is the will of God indistinguishable from chance?" < (one of my favorites). They're not good arguments because one can say that we are being put to a "test" ... which is just what a superior being would do.

Look at the fable of Adam and Eve. God puts the tree in the garden of Eden and tells 'em not to "eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge". Obviously (to anyone with a brain), the tree is there for expressly that purpose. God wants them to eat the fruit. They don't ... so ... he appears to Eve as a serpent to encourage her to take the plunge. After they eat, he has a reason to pretend to be pissed off and chuck them out of the garden. So ... now they're on their own. They don't appeal to God for forgiveness because he's ... pissed off.

Now, they have to get up off their asses and think and do work. That is, they must now fulfill the purpose of their design ... (God's design). You are supposed to be an independent, thinking being ... not relying on God to help you ... i.e. a good atheist. If you achieve this state, you are now a worthy ... and interesting ... companion to God. And ... in my speculative video ... you are an integral part of God ... a node in His brain. If he can get all those nodes functioning at maximum efficiency ... he can get into ... "the zone". The distributed entity of my video then experiences the "fulness of being" that is reserved to those who are not at war with themselves.

Thus, if all of us were decent, independent, thoughtful beings ... God would be the better for it. Remember, the distributed entity that I'm postulating is not infinite. He's in the same boat as us ... he's just a lot bigger.

Ultimately, I wish to postulate that consciousness is "scalable". We are units in a larger being and that being is a unit in another being and so on. This may not seem at all obvious. It may even seem idiotic at present. But ... if consciousness is (as I speculate it may be) ... a phase space construct ... there is no reason for it not to be scalable. In phase space, consciousness would be the meaning of ... and logically congruent with ... the electro-mechanical functions of the brain. That is, there may be a collective phase space construct for the universe (out to the Hubble radius) of which we are just a part.

[Check out James Gleick's book "Chaos" for a good explanation of phase space]



(04-04-2012 03:21 AM)DLJ Wrote:  If consciousness exists at the macro / newtonian level then perhaps it should exist at the cosmic levels and the micro / quantum levels. But I see no evidence of this.

Conversely, if it does not exist at the quantum and cosmic levels, I start to question the nature of consciousness at the macro level rather than go for conscious super-being. Would there also be a conscious quantum-being?

On the other hand, if anyone can give me proof that the super-entity called culture has a consciousness, then I too will start believing in higher powers which (in a drunken or depressed state) I might even be tempted to call "god". :-)
I can't change my music or voice or anything to suit an audience because I make the thing just for me ... as an expression of my identity. I have no ability to alter or displace the ideas of others and so ... no longer try (from experience). If anyone learns anything from one of my videos, it is only because they had nothing in that place to begin with ;o)
------------------------------
There wouldn't be any consciousness at the quantum level (as we could perceive it) for lack of information. Lots of "stuff" is required for human level consciousness. But ... an electron "knows" what it's supposed to do ... somehow.

1 bit of information ... may ... = 1 bit of consciousness.

At the macro level, the consciousness that I speculate to exist ... would be slower operating while more extensive in content.
Macro = slow and information rich
Micro = fast and information poor

I can't prove that "culture" has a consciousness. I simply suspect that it does. A more interesting thought would be ... what is the information carrying capacity of that being?

We each create in our minds an avatar of every person we know. The more familiar we are with that person ... the more realistic is the avatar. Hence, we can communicate with that avatar and imagine what the real person would say in a given situation. I recall a man who lamented that when he died, his wife would be truly dead for then there would be no one left who knew her. He kept here alive as that avatar in his mind.

So, how much of an individual might survive death in the form of an avatar in the mind of the supposed distributed entity? We know for certain that some part of us survives death by incorporation into the culture ... else, culture would remain unchanged over millenial periods.

Hi! Thanks for your reply. I agree the bible is dangerous etc. I also agree the bible says some "comforting" things if one is credulous enough to believe them, although they are few and far between. I must disagree with you that this is why it has survived. In my opinion, the bible has survived because it is very useful propaganda for churches to use to control people.

Saint Paul, the father of Christian theology, doesn't think man is important.

Re "A poor atheist argument is one that makes sport of religious principles." That's a big generalisation.

I agree religion can kill you, but am not sure I understand your reasoning as to why we shouldn't make fun of it.

I'm sorry, you've lost me re Adam and Eve, and re "the distributed entity of my video".

Um....are you saying we are all part of God? If so, then god is us, a concept the "Christian" gnostics believed in, and one which, to my mind, is obviously true. Man has created god in his own likeness.

Please keep talking, Mark
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07-04-2012, 03:05 AM
RE: An Atheist Theory of God
(04-04-2012 04:06 AM)EBTX Wrote:  Thank you for your answer. That's what I was hoping for in this forum ... cold (but wholesome) rationality. As I said, I've been an atheist for ~50 years but would accept the possibility of a "Supreme Being" ... if and only if ... I can find his physical location.

Let me give you an example of an experience that gives me pause (as regards the nature of consciousness).
About 30 years ago, I chanced upon two uniformed teams of ladies playing softball in a park. They were playing fast pitch underhand softball (that's girl-fast). What intrigued me was that the pitcher was about 10 months pregnant ... I mean ready to pop any second. She even ran out a grounder to first base and the baby bounced terribly. It hurt my belly to watch :o(

I was behind a four foot high chain link fence maybe 12 feet off third base. Suddenly, I knew with absolute certainty that the next pitch would be hit right to me. So, I put up my right hand, where the ball would come, and then the pregnant gal pitched the ball ... then, the batter hit a curving, looping liner that came straight to me ... which I caught easily as my hand was waiting there, fingers at the ready. Neither the pitcher nor the batter looked in my direction at any time as far as I could tell.

However, I had to move my right hand approximately 9 inches up and to my right in order to catch the ball (that rules out precognition since it's not completely accurate). And ... I was surprised when I caught the ball to find that it was very fuzzy and not smooth. This accounted for the extra curvature resulting in the displacement of the ball by 9 inches (Bernoulli effect). I threw the ball back to the pregnant pitcher in one fairly fluid motion. Needless to say, I started to puzzle this out right then.

Because I could not resolve the "fuzziness" of the ball from the distance I was watching the game from, I finally attributed this incident to "subconscious calculation" on my part alone. And this was consistent with my surprise at the condition of the ball (which actually spun in my hand as I caught it). That is, I couldn't see the 'fuzz' so it didn't enter into my calculation.

This is a trivial event. But anyone with reasonable intellectual experience can see the enormity of the implications. Our subconscious processing power ... inherent in anyone's mind (taking myself as typical) ... must be perhaps, fully 6? orders of magnitude greater than anything I had previously guessed. And ... for this to be true ... we must be able to "read" what people will do next (and in succession) from their faces? ... body language? ... what?

I once had a go-round with James Randi in the early days of the internet (when he was email accessible) about the validity of anecdotal evidence. He took the position that it was pretty much worthless while I took the position that it was potentially deadly to ignore it, i.e. we should accept what others say as true, out of good will, until and unless the information proves untrue (but not necessarily to the point of acting on that information). I think he would say of the above "experience" that I was cherry picking my experiences and putting an impossible reason to it ... and that it was "just chance" and nothing more.

But it was most certainly not chance. I've had a few other such trivial occurrences ... not as dramatic ... all the same theme.
1) sudden "knowing" what was to happen,
2) feeling of absolute certainty,
3) the thing happened with ~99% accuracy.
At other times, I never have the conditions 1 or 2 ... at all ... ever. I guess things and sometimes get them right or wrong just like anyone else. The above experience is in another category altogether. I'm not being visionary here or mystical ... just reportorial. I admit this is anecdotal evidence of "something" unknown, but I am very experienced and know fully what I am saying. If a pilot with 80,000 hours of flight time said "I saw something up there that's 'unknown' to our science" ... most people would (should) take it seriously.

I am logically forced to conclude that ... there is some information transfer between brains that is enormous in complexity ... and ... since I don't subscribe to any mystical connection (vibrations? ;o) ... that the transfer is by sight and sound. And ... because this transfer must occur ... we may conjecture (but not prove at this time) that the sum of all human connections of this nature ... may ... constitute ... another conscious entity cohabiting the planet ... not infinite in knowledge and not existing beyond the confines of man.

To try to go further ... moves away from primary speculation into secondary and tertiary where the likelihood of being correct decreases as x^n where n is the speculation level. So, if I hazard into greater depths ... I may end up in a rubber room with Nietzsche and Cantor ;o)

As a direct deduction though ... the rate of thought of such a "distributed" entity would necessarily be slow if it used sight and sound to transfer information around. I mean much slower than us, where the internal brain connections are proximate.

Thanks again for your insight and patience.

Greetings again EBTX,

Sorry for not having responded sooner. I had a few days off and spent some time working on my car but also contemplated a bit about your post and I wanted to construct a reply that I feel warranted the effort you put into your own.

I don't wish to dismiss your own experience you had. Although, as an atheist, I am sure that you must also understand that many of us have a hard time with personal stories and experiences that others have when theists explain: "I had a divine experience and this is what it was like. You'd have to be there." but I'm sure you can understand that many of us must remain skeptical upon personal experiences without being able to relate these experiences to everyone.

That said, the example of your experience and such does of course bring up other questions such as: How would I relate this to my own experience of something perhaps that has happened in my life that I myself cannot explain, but seemed strange to me, very odd and unexplainable? If something of this complexity happens the chances are very slim that these particular things lined up and of course "simply just happened." by chance. At least, this is the point that I am understanding in your post from what I'm reading.

Having re-read this thread multiple times and your analogies multiple times this sounds very similar to a proposal I have heard several times from a few physicists who were on some interestind debates and meetings that had been hosted in many places. It's not exactly the same, but similar. Jim Gates has talked a lot about it and seems to be on board with it, essentially it is the suggestion that perhaps we are in a similator of sorts (some people call this the "matrix proposal") - essentially in Superstring equations they have found odd code (at least, this is how they explain it), patterns in string theory that basically seem to be just like computer code. They say it was originally created by a man by the name of Claude Shannon way back in the 1940s. They seem to be on the idea that since we cannot distinguish the difference between what a normal computer program would look like and this superstring code through their equations that perhaps we are indeed maybe in some sort of "simulator" being driven by a being. There are of course many theories on this, many thoughts, many ideas.

My only problem wish such an idea is that string theory is still extremely theoretical in many places. An attempt at a unified theory which has made some progress over the last 2 decades, but still seems that many physicists would agree it has a ways to go. Thus far, no one has come to a conclusion, many physicists still don't agree on some parts of it and there is actually more than just one type of string theory because many are still up in the air. Some propose 5 dimensions, others 11, some more, etc etc etc... I think the talk of string theory is fascinating, however, I can't agree on any of them because I'm not a physicist nor am I in any position to have enough experience to talk about such things in depth. But to a degree I understand the argument of what they are proposing and it is very interesting. I don't want to make an "Argument to Authority" and say - "Well if a physicist says that, obviously he must be right" because many of these physicists are working on things that are so incredibly theoretical that it's hard to tell if at some point something else will come along and stamp it out, or if it will become the next bit of tomorrow's physics.

Another interesting point that these people who believe in this simulator proposal is very very similar to your ideas on consciousness. That is that they say that the computers of the future are so advanced that they have the capability of consciousness, or rather, their complexity is so vast that they are capable of a level of consciousness. If this is the case, then that means that our brains aren't any more special than a computer and therefore, at some point, the complexity of something such as a biological computation in the brain would be dependent on the complexity of the biological form, therefore, if you give that a degree of complexity then it is capable of consciousness. Take it away and it wouldn't be conscious. But what would that have to do with being in a simulator? Well, perhaps it wouldn't since other things would just be.... "what they are."

Although the difference here is that they are suggesting that we are being simulated on the computers of tomorrow and don't know it, they do not think that we are tied to a being, but being ran through a ridiculously complex computer that can simulate the forces of nature, physics, the universe, consioucness, interaction, etc etc. The similarity of this that I can see to your idea, is that instead of a simulator, the central bit of such a consciousness would be what you are proposing to be god, and through that complexity, the networking and this connection we would be those nodes.

This is just my thoughts on this. When I read your initial response to me I thought something about it sounded familiar to a proposal I had heard at another point in time, I just couldn't pinpoint it and had to think about it.

That being said, I still don't think this is something I would be able to follow or believe since most of these proposed ideas are of course things that have been brought up from scratching the surface of unified theories and the ideas themselves are just that, still suggestions with many ideas behind them. I of course remain open minded and like to keep up to date on how these people are thinking. Some would say it's fascinating, an interesting proposal. Others would say these physicists have been working too hard without a break. Others would simply dismiss it and say: "That's crazy." but who knows, I suppose time will tell. Either way I found the similarities between your ideas and theirs to an extent very interesting.
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