Pascal's Wager Expanded Edition
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07-11-2013, 02:18 PM
RE: Pascal's Wager Expanded Edition
(06-11-2013 03:50 PM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(06-11-2013 02:21 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  One cannot call the subjection or subjugation of women (or men, or dogs, or children, or even--Lord help us--Atheists) a net negative, or net positive, or net neutral, on a scientific basis or a subjective basis without defining what is positive, what is negative, and how we know the difference, something Mr. Harris did not do.

In his presentation, he not only used subjective measures but had the arrogance to suggest that science can offer empirical data to prove assertions--without definitions, controls or scales! He got applause from an audience that doesn't like Islam or pornographic sales counters in America, and that's about all he accomplished.

You're here to defend your viewpoint and he isn't, so let's begin by suggesting that Islamic women are held compliant by the wicked society that subjugates them, which is a net positive from the male perspective in that society, and their might makes right in their eyes. Women in the West protest, abort children, violently abuse their husbands, etc. for a net negative.

See? As I've said to you many times now, you need to demonstrate why your subjective viewpoint is correct, and provide empirical evidence that it is.


Yep, purposely obtuse once again... Drinking Beverage

If you are of the opinion that the conservative Islamic regimes are better on the whole than the liberal secular democracies, then I would invite you to convert to Islam and emigrate over there. Or better yet, don't convert, and then you can have the privilege of being treated as a heretic and subjected to Sharia law.

You'd never accept any evidence anyways, because you're stuck on an 'objective morality' kick. Science could help us better judge what is objectively more or less moral given a certain set of criteria, but science cannot determine what that subjective criteria is. There is no objective evidence to prove to you that gauging human suffering is the only or even the best gauge of morality. But it sure as hell is better than taking the Bible at face value.

If you take into account overall happiness, infant mortality, levels of education, wealth distribution, prison populations, etc. Just about any measurable scale between nations that you could use, the liberal nations of secular norther Europe are leagues ahead of backwards on oppressive fundamentalist religious regimes throughout the world. This would lead most people to conclude that supporting religious freedom, equality under the law, universal healthcare and education, and other prominent aspects of their government policies just might have something to do with the people in their nations living longer, being wealthier, better educated, and overall much happier. Maybe, just maybe, they're somehow connected.

Unless of course what you value in society isn't these things. Maybe you prefer the ability to murder your wife if she left the house without a male escort? Maybe you'd enjoy maintaining your honor by killing your daughter after she was brutally gang raped? Or maybe you'd rather live someplace where you don't ever have to worry about 'gay pride' parades?

I can't use science to say that you're objectively wrong in valuing those traits in a society, but I can tell you that to value them is fucked up. Yes, that is subjective. But I came to that conclusion by being more concerned for the well being of my fellow human beings, than with my own personal eternal fate after I die according to whatever religious indoctrination had taken hold of me.

I used the word "wicked", actually, describing Islam, to avoid your very response. You are ducking my point and Sam Harris's presentation. You both are rejecting certain Islamist practices on subjective bases and not "scientific analysis" as Mr. Harris claimed. THAT was my point.
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07-11-2013, 02:22 PM
RE: Pascal's Wager Expanded Edition
(06-11-2013 04:17 PM)guitar_nut Wrote:  
(06-11-2013 02:16 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  My arguments are fresh. I sit down and constantly think not only of new apologetics but of debunking the claims of "theologians" like Augustine and Calvin--the kind of people who make arguments you are still attaching.

Ouch. If you're sitting down with the goal of creating new apologetic arguments, then there's no reason to remove yourself from the pool of theologians you're trying to distance yourself from. You're presupposing your conclusion and looking for arguments to support the conclusion. Different content, same dubious goal. There will always be a need for apologetics, however, as long as our own knowledge continues to expand. Someday your arguments will be considered old, and younger creationist generations will offer new apologetics showing how the story of genesis obviously was meant to include the microbes we found on Mars in 2025. Alien landing? More apologetics needed. Jesus still hasn't returned? More apologetics needed. Sam Harris Jr. finds emperical evidence for scientific morality? More apologetics needed.

If I sit down and think "I know the bible can prove morality, how can I prove it?" then I'm not really taking an open approach to the topic. If I sit down and think "I wonder if morality can be demonstrated?" and resist the knee-jerk urge to reach for my bible, or search for articles in AIG, or Google 'Bible proves morality atheists are all wrong', then I'm being more of a freethinker.

(06-11-2013 02:16 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  Again, I watched the TED presentation, all 25 minutes of it, and took notes, and Sam Harris asserted how Islam had erred and the religious had erred and how science could make moral decisions without explaining how it could do so, citing case studies or peer-reviewed efforts (sound familiar?) and etc. His offer to pay to refute his argument is a straw offer because he lays down no scientific facts in evidence that may be contested.

Well, then he's wrong and you should call him out. I think I know what the problem is, though. You could attack his argument, but you don't have a stronger counter-argument. Harris and most other atheist 'celebs' have made fodder of biblical-based morality. Still, I'd write him an essay. You crank out 1000 words an hour on this site. The essay should be no problem.

For someone who doesn't believe in metaphysics, you apparently read minds, specifically mine.

Rather then presuming conclusions to begin, the way to demolish the pretensious arguments made by freethinkers is to assume exactly what they say is 100% true and then walk out the argument to its logical conclusions.

For example, when told an omnipotent God should be able to make a world without suffering, I assumed He could, and then went to the logical ends. I concluded:

*It would be difficult to teach about Hell without a foretaste of it via suffering

*It would lead to an absence of true pleasure in many respects

*Etc.

Then I presented my findings here to have everyone say I was wrong without their offering counter-examples.

It's called the hypothesis method.

PS. There is no essay that can disprove Sam Harris's assertions because his logic is 100% subjective. He shows a screen describing peaks and troughs of moral choices without describing how those data points are derived, what point counting system is used, whether he used controls or a survey of beliefs, etc. He's more so saying that one can put all social mores in a database and test against them, something that quickly breaks down WITHOUT ANY RELIGIONS. You'd have left the Atheist's positivism that negates most of the animal kingdom's behavior and etc.
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07-11-2013, 03:36 PM
RE: Pascal's Wager Expanded Edition
(07-11-2013 02:22 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  For someone who doesn't believe in metaphysics, you apparently read minds, specifically mine.

I sit down and constantly think not only of new apologetics...
That comes across as you sitting down and thinking of new apologetics. I promise I didn't probe your thoughts.

(07-11-2013 02:22 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  Rather then presuming conclusions to begin, the way to demolish the pretensious arguments made by freethinkers is to assume exactly what they say is 100% true and then walk out the argument to its logical conclusions.

And where do the counter arguments come from? Islam? Greek mythology? Buddhism? Other fields of science and philosophy? Surprise! They come from... your particular interpretation of your religion. Why is that?

(07-11-2013 02:22 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  For example, when told an omnipotent God should be able to make a world without suffering, I assumed He could, and then went to the logical ends. I concluded:

*It would be difficult to teach about Hell without a foretaste of it via suffering
*It would lead to an absence of true pleasure in many respects

Then I presented my findings here to have everyone say I was wrong without their offering counter-examples.

You presuppose the existence of hell, for starters. Where did that idea come from? Observation of our natural world? Or the bible?

"It would be difficult to teach about hell..."
You accept that your god can create a universe, but cannot... CANNOT... even fathom that this same god could not avoid suffering altogether. Yet an eternity of heaven with no suffering is definitely possible. Why is that? How do those two things dance together in your head? It's because the ideas of the bible must be protected. Your faith won't ever allow you to stray from your presupposed conclusions no matter how much you claim intellectual honesty. Presupposition handcuffs you to things you cannot rationally defend.

All it took to lead me to atheism was a level playing field. Everyone got a spot at the table, not just my bible. You don't demonstrate any of that openness. You rush to "debunk" anything that contradicts the bible. You're consistent in your goals and approach, regardless of the topic.

(07-11-2013 02:22 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  PS. There is no essay that can disprove Sam Harris's assertions because his logic is 100% subjective. He shows a screen describing peaks and troughs of moral choices without describing how those data points are derived, what point counting system is used, whether he used controls or a survey of beliefs, etc. He's more so saying that one can put all social mores in a database and test against them, something that quickly breaks down WITHOUT ANY RELIGIONS. You'd have left the Atheist's positivism that negates most of the animal kingdom's behavior and etc.

I neither gain nor lose anything by you not writing an essay to Sam Harris. I'm indifferent; I figured you'd be interested.

...it would rather be a man... [who] plunges into scientific questions with which he has no real acquaintance, only to obscure them with aimless rhetoric, and distract the attention of his hearers from the real point at issue by eloquent digressions and skilled appeals to religious prejudice.
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07-11-2013, 03:39 PM
RE: Pascal's Wager Expanded Edition
(07-11-2013 03:36 PM)guitar_nut Wrote:  
(07-11-2013 02:22 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  For someone who doesn't believe in metaphysics, you apparently read minds, specifically mine.

I sit down and constantly think not only of new apologetics...
That comes across as you sitting down and thinking of new apologetics. I promise I didn't probe your thoughts.

(07-11-2013 02:22 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  Rather then presuming conclusions to begin, the way to demolish the pretensious arguments made by freethinkers is to assume exactly what they say is 100% true and then walk out the argument to its logical conclusions.

And where do the counter arguments come from? Islam? Greek mythology? Buddhism? Other fields of science and philosophy? Surprise! They come from... your particular interpretation of your religion. Why is that?

(07-11-2013 02:22 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  For example, when told an omnipotent God should be able to make a world without suffering, I assumed He could, and then went to the logical ends. I concluded:

*It would be difficult to teach about Hell without a foretaste of it via suffering
*It would lead to an absence of true pleasure in many respects

Then I presented my findings here to have everyone say I was wrong without their offering counter-examples.

You presuppose the existence of hell, for starters. Where did that idea come from? Observation of our natural world? Or the bible?

"It would be difficult to teach about hell..."
You accept that your god can create a universe, but cannot... CANNOT... even fathom that this same god could not avoid suffering altogether. Yet an eternity of heaven with no suffering is definitely possible. Why is that? How do those two things dance together in your head? It's because the ideas of the bible must be protected. Your faith won't ever allow you to stray from your presupposed conclusions no matter how much you claim intellectual honesty. Presupposition handcuffs you to things you cannot rationally defend.

All it took to lead me to atheism was a level playing field. Everyone got a spot at the table, not just my bible. You don't demonstrate any of that openness. You rush to "debunk" anything that contradicts the bible. You're consistent in your goals and approach, regardless of the topic.

(07-11-2013 02:22 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  PS. There is no essay that can disprove Sam Harris's assertions because his logic is 100% subjective. He shows a screen describing peaks and troughs of moral choices without describing how those data points are derived, what point counting system is used, whether he used controls or a survey of beliefs, etc. He's more so saying that one can put all social mores in a database and test against them, something that quickly breaks down WITHOUT ANY RELIGIONS. You'd have left the Atheist's positivism that negates most of the animal kingdom's behavior and etc.

I neither gain nor lose anything by you not writing an essay to Sam Harris. I'm indifferent; I figured you'd be interested.

I converted at age 21. I didn't presuppose Hell or anything else. We can put Hell into the argument or Heaven or NOTHING, and then suffering doesn't mean ANYTHING. So that's done.

Feel free to respond to the parts of my post you've ignored as well.
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07-11-2013, 04:04 PM
RE: Pascal's Wager Expanded Edition
(07-11-2013 03:39 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  Feel free to respond to the parts of my post you've ignored as well.

Which part(s) would you like me to address?

...it would rather be a man... [who] plunges into scientific questions with which he has no real acquaintance, only to obscure them with aimless rhetoric, and distract the attention of his hearers from the real point at issue by eloquent digressions and skilled appeals to religious prejudice.
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07-11-2013, 11:36 PM
RE: Pascal's Wager Expanded Edition
(07-11-2013 02:18 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  I used the word "wicked", actually, describing Islam, to avoid your very response. You are ducking my point and Sam Harris's presentation. You both are rejecting certain Islamist practices on subjective bases and not "scientific analysis" as Mr. Harris claimed. THAT was my point.


Right, so you're so ignorantly stubborn that you'd rather murder your raped daughter because Harris can't mathematically quantitatively prove to you that you would all be better off if you didn't...


It's real fucking easy. We have a debate, we agree upon the subjective scale of human suffering. Harris never dodged that point, and it's not the deal breaker you are attempting to make it. From what evidence we do have, murdering rape victim causes more suffering than other possible actions (like not murdering her), and is thus immoral (in comparison to not murdering her).

Super easy, unless your brain has been fucked sideways by faith. Dodgy

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