On the Existence of Garage Dragons
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21-08-2015, 03:23 PM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 03:08 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 02:59 PM)Chas Wrote:  I think not. He said there is no way to differentiate the undetectable from the non-existent.

If you pay close attention, you'll notice that Sagan thinks it's arrogant to assume falseness of unproven claims.

Which is not what is being discussed.

Unproven claims are one thing. Unprovable claims are entirely another.

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21-08-2015, 03:31 PM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 03:08 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 02:59 PM)Chas Wrote:  I think not. He said there is no way to differentiate the undetectable from the non-existent.

If you pay close attention, you'll notice that Sagan thinks it's arrogant to assume falseness of unproven claims.

14:33 - 16:53



And that is not what we are talking about. You continue to miss the point.

It is about untestable claims.
It is about the undetectable being not different than the non-existent.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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21-08-2015, 03:36 PM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
"An atheist (strong atheist by modern definition) is someone who is certain that God does not exist, someone who has compelling evidence against the existence of God. I know of no such compelling evidence. Because God can be relegated to remote times and places and to ultimate causes, we would have to know a great deal more about the universe than we do now to be sure that no such God exists. To be certain of the existence of God and to be certain of the nonexistence of God seem to me to be the confident extremes in a subject so riddled with doubt and uncertainty as to inspire very little confidence indeed." Carl Sagan
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21-08-2015, 03:45 PM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 03:36 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  "An atheist (strong atheist by modern definition) is someone who is certain that God does not exist, someone who has compelling evidence against the existence of God. I know of no such compelling evidence. Because God can be relegated to remote times and places and to ultimate causes, we would have to know a great deal more about the universe than we do now to be sure that no such God exists. To be certain of the existence of God and to be certain of the nonexistence of God seem to me to be the confident extremes in a subject so riddled with doubt and uncertainty as to inspire very little confidence indeed." Carl Sagan

This is relevant... how, precisely?

"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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21-08-2015, 03:50 PM
On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 03:36 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  "An atheist (strong atheist by modern definition) is someone who is certain that God does not exist, someone who has compelling evidence against the existence of God. I know of no such compelling evidence. Because God can be relegated to remote times and places and to ultimate causes, we would have to know a great deal more about the universe than we do now to be sure that no such God exists. To be certain of the existence of God and to be certain of the nonexistence of God seem to me to be the confident extremes in a subject so riddled with doubt and uncertainty as to inspire very little confidence indeed." Carl Sagan

Sagan isn't infallible and in this case, Sagan is wrong.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
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21-08-2015, 03:53 PM (This post was last modified: 21-08-2015 06:16 PM by Free.)
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 01:30 PM)Stevil Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 08:35 AM)Free Wrote:  My objection is this:

He's making a positive claim that two possibilities exist:

1. God exists.
2. God does not exist.

I am asking him to qualify one of those options as being possible, in particular, option 1.

In other words, what evidence can he supply that elevates option 1 from being a baseless assertion to being a hypothesis.

Why is Option 1 a possibility?
And why on earth don't you focus on the possibility of option 2.
Why don't you demand me to provide evidence in support of option 2? Option 2 is also a baseless assertion.

But the thing is Option 1 and Option 2 are all encompassing. It has to be one or the other. That's why we include the words "Either" "or". We are hedging our bets.

Basic logic lets us do this.

But if I give you the proposition
Either "I can juggle three balls for 1 continuous minute" OR "I can't juggle three balls for 1 continuous minute"

You have no knowledge of my juggling proficiency but you ought to be able to understand that my above proposition resolves to TRUE.

You don't know if it is possible for me to juggle three balls for 1 minute and you don't know if it is impossible for me to juggle three balls for 1 minutes. But if you have a grasp of basic rudimentary logic then you can understand that my proposition is valid and that it resolves to TRUE regardless of your not knowing which or the two options is true and regardless of you not knowing the possibility of either option. At least one of the options must be true, you just don't know which one.

Listen carefully, because you still don't get it.

Your analogy above demonstrates something that is possible. Yes, it resolves to true. It is entirely possible for you to juggle three balls for 1 minute, and entirely possible that you cannot juggle 3 balls for 1 minute.

So why is it possible? Because you can demonstrate either/or as being true by simply performing the act.

Now let's use the same scenario with the god question.

Either god possibly exists or god doesn't possibly exist.

What's the difference between that and the juggling scenario? In the juggling scenario, you can actually prove one way or another whether or not you can juggle 3 balls for 1 minute. It's possible that you can, and it's possible that you can't.

It's falsifiable.

So here is how I see it:

Juggling Balls:

1. Is it possible that that you can juggle 3 balls for 1 minute? Yes, and it can be proven
2. Is it possible that you cannot juggle 3 balls for 1 minute? Yes, and it can be proven.

Question of God:

1. Is it possible that God exists? No, because it hasn't been proven to be possible. This is the part that invalidates your proposition as being TRUE because this particular part has not been proven to be true. This is precisely where i see the contradiction, because this part does not agree with the proposition of TRUE.

2. It is possible that God doesn't exist? Yes, no evidence exists.

The properties of both scenarios are completely different. We can prove whether or not you can juggle the balls for 3 minutes, and determine which one of the two choices is true.

We know for a certainty that one or the other is true.

But before we can claim your proposition on the possible existence of God as possibly being capable of being the choice that could be True, we need to prove that it is first capable of being True.

We do not know for a certainty that one- the possible existence of God- is true.

Hence, we cannot make the claim that your asserted possible existence of God can be one of the choices that could possibly be true until you prove the existence of God is possible.

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21-08-2015, 03:54 PM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
For instance, what atheist here has proclaimed to have evidence of the nonexistence of anything, let alone any given theist or deist's god claims?

That's a straw man.

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21-08-2015, 03:54 PM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 03:45 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 03:36 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  "An atheist (strong atheist by modern definition) is someone who is certain that God does not exist, someone who has compelling evidence against the existence of God. I know of no such compelling evidence. Because God can be relegated to remote times and places and to ultimate causes, we would have to know a great deal more about the universe than we do now to be sure that no such God exists. To be certain of the existence of God and to be certain of the nonexistence of God seem to me to be the confident extremes in a subject so riddled with doubt and uncertainty as to inspire very little confidence indeed." Carl Sagan

This is relevant... how, precisely?

Of all claims, couldn't we say that the god claim is the real world claim of the garage dragon?

No one actually claims garage dragons, but plenty of people claim god. Sagan is basically saying that anyone who claims to know that god doesn't exist, is full of shit. Same as those who claim to know he does exist.

It's relevant because it demonstrates his skepticism, and anti-cynicism. Sagan thought cynics were full of shit. Someone who claims god doesn't exist is a cynic. That's precisely how it's relevant.
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21-08-2015, 03:56 PM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 03:53 PM)Free Wrote:  2. It is possible that God doesn't exist? Yes, no evidence exists.

You fail to realize that if god does exist, then it's not possible that he doesn't exist.
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21-08-2015, 03:56 PM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 03:54 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 03:45 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  This is relevant... how, precisely?

Of all claims, couldn't we say that the god claim is the real world claim of the garage dragon?

The deist god, certainly - and yes, that means that the deist god does not exist, by definition.

Sagan is explicitly not talking about the deist god.

"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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