Poll: Atheists only: Do you believe no god(s) exists?
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07-02-2017, 09:03 PM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(07-02-2017 08:48 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Is that your answer to my question about whose position is the garage dragon?

No. It's me pointing out that you said specifically that a given interpretation of the garage dragon scenario is incorrect, were given a simple and (supposedly) trivial way to demonstrate this, and then responded by backpedaling and saying that you had never claimed that the interpretation was wrong.

Although, as I have pointed out on numerous occasions, you don't seem to actually read the posts you are ostensibly responding to, so perhaps, in your head, you were carrying on an entirely different conversation.

Either way, you're still wasting everyone's time.

(07-02-2017 08:48 PM)Stevil Wrote:  I have been saying this all along, that it is a strawman arguement, that no-one holds onto this position so it is a useless argument. No-one argues for an invisible, non interacting irrelevant thing.

Except deists and the other theists who attempt to couch their beliefs in such terms that render their god undetectable.

It has a very specific area of application. It is not a straw man.

And even if there were exactly zero people who held any position that could be described by it, that would not make it wrong.

(07-02-2017 08:48 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Even the deists believe their god created the universe, so at least it did something.

And either this act of creation resulted in some detectable difference from a universe that was not created by their god, in which case we can demonstrate that this is not there, or it is undetectable, and the god is a garage dragon.

This has been explained to you at least five times now in this thread alone. You just consistently fail to actually read the arguments presented to you.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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07-02-2017, 09:18 PM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(07-02-2017 09:03 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  
(07-02-2017 08:48 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Is that your answer to my question about whose position is the garage dragon?

No. It's me pointing out that you said specifically that a given interpretation of the garage dragon scenario is incorrect, were given a simple and (supposedly) trivial way to demonstrate this, and then responded by backpedaling and saying that you had never claimed that the interpretation was wrong.
I still think your interpretation is wrong. There is no value in your interpretation. No-one holds that view and hence it can't be used to convince anyone of anything. More importantly, it isn't a proof that the subject of the claim doesn't exist. What it is, is the inner voice of the skeptic when a claimant makes a claim and then proceeds to make up excuses as to why the thing they are claiming is unvarifiable.

It just points out that we need the claimant to provide some falsifiable criteria. It certainly isn't assuming that the claimant has no falsifiable criteria to offer. Taking that position would be strawmanning, instead we are to ask for the claim to be built properly by the claimant and to include some falsifiable criteria otherwise we are to simply reject the claim.
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07-02-2017, 09:21 PM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(07-02-2017 09:03 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  
(07-02-2017 08:48 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Even the deists believe their god created the universe, so at least it did something.

And either this act of creation resulted in some detectable difference from a universe that was not created by their god, in which case we can demonstrate that this is not there, or it is undetectable, and the god is a garage dragon.
Just because we can't find evidence that our universe was created by a god, doesn't mean that it wasn't.
We have no idea what to look for with regards to evidence for a creation event.
This does not prove that a god didn't do it.
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07-02-2017, 09:33 PM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(07-02-2017 09:18 PM)Stevil Wrote:  I still think your interpretation is wrong.

Then you can answer the question.

What is the difference between a garage dragon and no dragon at all?

(07-02-2017 09:18 PM)Stevil Wrote:  There is no value in your interpretation.

If you think that there is no value in being able to differentiate between things that exist and things that do not, then you are free to do so.

You are just very, very silly for it.

(07-02-2017 09:18 PM)Stevil Wrote:  No-one holds that view

Wrong.

(07-02-2017 09:18 PM)Stevil Wrote:  More importantly, it isn't a proof that the subject of the claim doesn't exist.

Yes, it is.

Garage dragons do not exist by definition. By showing that a given hypothetical entity meets the definition of a garage dragon, we show that it does not exist.

(07-02-2017 09:21 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Just because we can't find evidence that our universe was created by a god, doesn't mean that it wasn't.

It does, if the god is defined in such a way that no evidence could exist.

(07-02-2017 09:18 PM)Stevil Wrote:  We have no idea what to look for with regards to evidence for a creation event.

That depends entirely on the claimed method of the god in question. We do, in fact, have many creation accounts which would supposedly leave evidence behind. They can and have been falsified.

Those that have not tend to fall into the garage dragon category. Those that fall into neither still lack supporting evidence, and can be discarded.

In all cases, we know that no gods exist.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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08-02-2017, 08:31 AM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(07-02-2017 03:13 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Your method of discovery is based on a sample set of one. You have no obligation to document your reasoning, your hypothesis, your endeavors to distinguish between competing hypothesis.

There’s a fundamental reality here, that’s indisputable, though it seems many atheists have trouble acknowledging this. I only have one conscious self-aware mind, to make sense of the world around me, of life, of reality, of truth. “Consciousness is the faculty of perceiving that which exists” I have to make sense of the plethora of inputs, external influences, and observations, give conceivable order to the endless streams of data. Information which concludes, conversations other people, like myself, peers, opponents, and those so unlike myself, reading books, studies, watching lectures, etc…..You throw a variety of propositions my way, and my conscious brain is responsible for making sense of them, extrapolate the meanings, and intentions of.


While I might not sit hear documenting each and every one of my beliefs, and reasons for them, as someone whose incessantly self-aware, I constantly think of them, and how the came to be, what goes into forming them. One point in contrast to many atheists here, is that rather than starting with this idea of an objective self, and try to form a view stemming form this. I start with the fact that I am a biological creature, with a biological brain, and start with the consideration of how biological brains operate, what goes into shaping thought patterns, what manipulates and alters them, what is our natural tendency, intuitive reasoning, how do brains naturally discern truths/reality, etc.. If you start from there, it’s much easier to recognize quackery when it comes to thinking of thinking. If it doesn’t align with how biological brains operate, than it’s likely false.

Quote:The scientific method, can measures to deal with and counter personal biases, it requires documentation, hypothesis, accounting for alternatives, listing of assumptions, references to other works, peer review, challenges to the data and reasoning.

Perhaps you should apply the scientific method to your hypothesis, that the scientific method counters personal biases. Is there a peer reviewed paper that tests the efficacy of the scientific method in countering personal biases? I’ve read a variety of studies regarding personal biases, possible means of countering them, and surprisingly none of them suggest contemplating the scientific method as a solution to them.

The reality is that if you’re a scientist with a strong bias, such as a political bias, that bias is likely to impact your methodology all the way down, in the sort of hypothesis you form, the sort of variables, and evidence you consider, resulting in selection bias, the sort of peer criticisms you give weight to etc… In regards to science as an industry, you see this sort of politicking all the time, the studies get manipulated to form a particular conclusion, the same way people manipulate stats.

But let’s ask you a question, is everything you hold as true, based on applying the scientific method? If not, what percentage do you think, of the things you hold as true, do you think are the result of that application?

If they require peer-review, in reputable scientific journals, then I’d estimate the percentage to .00000000000000000001% of all the things you hold as true.

But I can think of a solution to personal biases, personal apathy. If you don’t give a shit about what the results are, then you can’t really be biased about it. In fact the more marginal your personal investment in any particular position is, the less you’re likely to be biased about it. Everyone here is likely to be less biased in determining whether your wife committed a crime, than you are. Go into a hypothesis apathetically, and you’ll be able to go in their without personal biases clouding your judgment.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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08-02-2017, 08:54 AM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(07-02-2017 03:27 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  You can present anything you like and call it evidence, but only those parts of it that actually support your assertion are actually evidence.

Nope, both the definitions I provided, don't suggest this. In fact the wiki definition, treats evidence as a term that functionally designed, "anything presented in support".

It seems perhaps you want to suggest that evidence is deemed "actually evidence", if the position it supports is true? Or do you belief that positions that are false can also have "actual" evidence in support of them? To give an example, take a commonly held scientific position, that later becomes falsified. Does that mean the "evidence" previously used in support of it wasn't "actual evidence"?

Quote:

Making it plain that you are mishandling terms in an attempt to mask the fact that you have no actual support for your assertions is anything but semantics.


No, you just a have personal, quasi-religious investment in a term like evidence. I provided definition in support of my usage. Yours on the other hand, in application is likely to be quite inconsistent and contradictory, but we'll allow time to reveal that.

Quote:I have no interest in your armchair psychology. You do not have even the most basic understanding of what my position is, let alone why I hold it.

No, I just treat you like a general run of the mill atheists here when it comes to terms like evidence, until I have reasons to believe otherwise.

Quote:Those positions can be supported with evidence. Presumably, you have this evidence - because it is trivially easy to produce - and that is why you believe these things. If you didn't, then yes, you would be silly for believing them.

Those positions are the result of a variety of intuitive reasoning, a result of the way brains naturally processed information, and discern whats true or not, based on a variety of stimuli, external inputs, observations, etc... We're not likely to go back and try and draw a line between which of those factors constitute as evidence, and not evidence, because in reality to draw such a line would be akin to creationist trying to draw a line between kinds.

And to say that such underly factors are evidence when in comes to certain conclusion, but not others, derived similarly, is contradictory, not to mention invalid, in consideration of how biological brains naturally process information.

Do only humans have evidenced based views? Is all that goes into leading a chimpanzee, or a dog's brain to perceive certain aspects of reality, evidence?

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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08-02-2017, 09:14 AM (This post was last modified: 08-02-2017 09:21 AM by Tomasia.)
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(07-02-2017 03:51 PM)Chas Wrote:  That standards for what is considered evidence vary by discipline. We are talking about the nature of reality here, so what constitutes acceptable evidence is scientific evidence.

Pretty much every discipline is about the nature of reality, just some subset of that nature, such as history, rather than biology, or economics, or healthcare etc...

Quote:You want to broadly construe 'evidence' into meaninglessness. It is you who is playing fast and loose with the language.

Nope, I'm using the word that best serves, as the definition/meaning I'm using. If I was translating the word that has similar connotations in my native tongue, that word would be "evidence" as well. And dccording to a variety of dictionaries the best translation of that meaning, is the term "evidence".

In fact to even try and draw a line here as to what you think constitutes as evidence, using whatever criteria you might imagine, requires a great a deal of mental gymnastic, contradictory positions, to actually hold. It's the atheists equivalent of creationist trying to draw a line between kinds. It's silly.

Here's some question that might reveal these contradictions:

Do only human animals have evidence based perceptions of reality? Do dogs, and chimpanzees have evidence based perceptions of reality? Or are their perceptions of reality not evidence based?

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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08-02-2017, 10:02 AM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(08-02-2017 08:31 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  One point in contrast to many atheists here

You don't have any idea what the atheists here think, Tomasia, let alone why.

This is a constant issue in discussions with you. Rather than deal with the arguments and positions actually presented, you make up straw ones, and refuse to confront anything but those.

(08-02-2017 08:31 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  Perhaps you should apply the scientific method to your hypothesis, that the scientific method counters personal biases.

This has been done.

Science demonstrably returns better results than people making things up that simply confirm what they already believe. That's rather the whole reason we use it.

(08-02-2017 08:31 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  The reality is that if you’re a scientist with a strong bias, such as a political bias, that bias is likely to impact your methodology all the way down, in the sort of hypothesis you form, the sort of variables, and evidence you consider, resulting in selection bias, the sort of peer criticisms you give weight to etc…

You heard it here first, folks. Science is a conspiracy by atheists who are blinded by their atheism.

(08-02-2017 08:54 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(07-02-2017 03:27 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  You can present anything you like and call it evidence, but only those parts of it that actually support your assertion are actually evidence.

Nope, both the definitions I provided, don't suggest this. In fact the wiki definition, treats evidence as a term that functionally designed, "anything presented in support".

With in support being the operative phrase.

You can show me a picture of the Queen of England and tell me that it's supposed to help establish your case that the moon is made of green cheese, but that doesn't make it evidence.

(08-02-2017 08:54 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  It seems perhaps you want to suggest that evidence is deemed "actually evidence", if the position it supports is true?

No. It merely has to actually support the position.

(08-02-2017 08:54 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  No, you just a have personal, quasi-religious investment in a term like evidence. I provided definition in support of my usage. Yours on the other hand, in application is likely to be quite inconsistent and contradictory, but we'll allow time to reveal that.

Once again, you do not know or understand my position, let alone why I hold it. Stop trying to make up motivations for other people. It only makes you look like more of an arrogant idiot than you already do.

(08-02-2017 08:54 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  Those positions are the result of a variety of intuitive reasoning , a result of the way brains naturally processed information, and discern whats true or not, based on a variety of stimuli, external inputs, observations, etc... We're not likely to go back and try and draw a line between which of those factors constitute as evidence, and not evidence, because in reality to draw such a line would be akin to creationist trying to draw a line between kinds.

Which does nothing to alter the fact that these beliefs are either evidence-based, and therefore rational, or not, and therefore not.

(08-02-2017 08:54 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  Do only humans have evidenced based views? Is all that goes into leading a chimpanzee, or a dog's brain to perceive certain aspects of reality, evidence?

Not all of it, no. Animals are as capable of being irrational as we are. But yes, some animals are capable of actual reasoning, and can take evidence into account - a dog learning that it will get a treat if it obeys a command based on repetition of this, for example.

(08-02-2017 09:14 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  In fact to even try and draw a line here as to what you think constitutes as evidence, using whatever criteria you might imagine, requires a great a deal of mental gymnastic, contradictory positions, to actually hold.

It really doesn't. It just requires an entry-level understanding of basic logic.

Of course, you don't have that, so it's not really surprising that you find the subject so confusing.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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08-02-2017, 11:11 AM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(08-02-2017 10:02 AM)Unbeliever Wrote:  You don't have any idea what the atheists here think, Tomasia, let alone why.

This is a constant issue in discussions with you. Rather than deal with the arguments and positions actually presented, you make up straw ones, and refuse to confront anything but those.

I have as much of an idea as anyone possibly could in having a few years worth of conversations with opposition party members online. I have as much of a grasp of what atheists on the internet think, as atheists do based on conversations with actual theists on the internet, if not more so. I’ve read a variety of atheists authors, have personal relationship with my non-believing friends, and a more active member here than you judging by post counts.

You might not agree with my assessments of atheists, anymore so than theists are likely to agree with your assessments of them, but that’s besides the point. All my views of atheists are provisional as well, ever changing as new information and new insights emerge, and are all treated more like a hypothesis than as an absolute fact.

Quote:You heard it here first, folks. Science is a conspiracy by atheists who are blinded by their atheism.

All I hear is a strawman. In fact the examples i had in mind were political ones.

Quote:Which does nothing to alter the fact that these beliefs are either evidence-based, and therefore rational, or not, and therefore not.

No but it brings into question the meaning of the term evidence. Either all of the inputs that lead a biological brains thought pattern to an accurate perception of reality, constitute as evidence, or only some of those inputs do. If only some of those input constitute as “evidence”, and other’s don’t. Then this would mean that there are non-evidence based inputs that lead to accurate perceptions of reality as well.

Quote: But yes, some animals are capable of actual reasoning, and can take evidence into account - a dog learning that it will get a treat if it obeys a command based on repetition of this, for example.

Dogs don’t tend to sit through courses on logic, nor do their thoughts follow a series of language based propositions. They don’t get to label one set of inputs as evidence and another set of input as not evidence.

So the same question applies here as well. Do all the external inputs/data/information that leads a dog brain to recognize accurate perceptions of reality, constitute as evidence? Or just some of those inputs?

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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08-02-2017, 11:30 AM
RE: For Atheists: Do you believe no god(s) exist?
(08-02-2017 10:02 AM)Unbeliever Wrote:  It really doesn't. It just requires an entry-level understanding of basic logic.

According to you all God beliefs are illogical, so it seems that only a small fraction of us are able to posses an entry-level understanding of basic logic, the possession of which would require you to be an atheist, at least by the end of it, apparently.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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