Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
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11-08-2015, 08:49 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
(10-08-2015 04:55 PM)Airportkid Wrote:  That'd be an unconventional use of language. If you asked me if I believed Mercury's core had more iridium than Earth I would not answer "No", I would answer "Beats me". If pressed for my belief on the matter I'd say "I haven't any".

It would be unconventional. No doesn't tend to imply both "i believe" and " and I merely lack a belief". If someone asks me if I believe Obama was born in the US, and I said no, they more than likely will understand that to mean that I believe he was born somewhere else other than the US. rather than take it to mean "I don't know".

Using the word No, in a way that allows for both meanings, creates a great deal of equivocation. And those using it this unconventional way, are entirely responsible for that.
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11-08-2015, 09:22 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
Perhaps you guys just don't like the wording. How about this?

Do you hold the belief that Mercury's core has more iridium than earth? If you don't hold that belief, then the answer is no. And likewise, I can ask, do you hold the belief that Mercury's core has less iridium than earth? You can also answer no to this question without any contradiction if you simply have no belief regarding which planet's core contains the most iridium.
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11-08-2015, 09:33 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
(11-08-2015 06:46 AM)unfogged Wrote:  
(11-08-2015 06:38 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  I still disagree.

Let's swap out god's existence for the guilt value of OJ Simpson.

Did OJ Simpson commit the crime of murder?

Just like the god question, there are 3 possible answers, yes, no, or I don't know. If the answer given is no, then that person is claiming that OJ did not commit the crime, and that's totally different than an "I don't know" response, which is not claiming anything at all about whether or not OJ committed the crime.

But the question posed in the trial is "is he guilty" and the only answers allowed are yes and no. "No" can mean that you think he is innocent or that you don't know because the burden of proof has not been met.

Is god guilty of existing? No (he doesn't exist), No (we can't prove it), Yes

No it can't. There are 3 possible answers, yes, no, and I don't know. An answer of no, indicates that he is innocent.

In a court of law, we realize we might not get to the truth, so instead of asking "is he guilty," we ask, "can we prove beyond reasonable doubt that he's guilty?" When asking whether or not we can prove guilt, even if the answer is no, we realize that even if we can't prove it, he could still be guilty (people often get away with murder).

And, when a court declares someone "not guilty," we all realize that this doesn't actually mean that the man is innocent, but rather, it wasn't able to be proven that he is guilty. The court is only really declaring that we could not prove guilt, and doesn't make a claim about actual guilt or innocence.
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11-08-2015, 09:41 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
And regarding the question, "is OJ guilty of murder?"

The answer I would hope to hear from everyone is "I don't know, but if I was forced to guess, I would say he is." An answer of "no" would indicate that you believe he is innocent, and no one believes he's innocent.

Also, me declaring that if I had to guess that I would guess him to be guilty is not the same as me saying that I believe he is guilty. I believe that I don't know whether or not he is guilty, but again, if I had to hedge my bets, I would bet on guilt.
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11-08-2015, 09:43 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
Tomasia,

Why not agnosticism? You could be an agnostic and still believe that the god theory is still the most plausible. Why jump to the conclusion of god?

Do you think that there is any chance that you're wrong?
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11-08-2015, 09:58 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
(11-08-2015 09:33 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  There are 3 possible answers, yes, no, and I don't know. An answer of no, indicates that he is innocent.

The question in a trial is "is the defendant guilty". The answer must be Yes (Guilty) or No (Not Guilty). Anything else would be a mistrial and they'd start all over. The No verdict encompasses both Innocent and Not Proven.

Quote:In a court of law, we realize we might not get to the truth, so instead of asking "is he guilty," we ask, "can we prove beyond reasonable doubt that he's guilty?" When asking whether or not we can prove guilt, even if the answer is no, we realize that even if we can't prove it, he could still be guilty (people often get away with murder).

When discussing god concepts, we realize we might not get to the truth, so instead of asking "does god exist," we ask, "do you believe that god exists?" When asking whether or not we believe, even if the answer is no, we realize that even if we don't believe it we may just not have found the evidence (we don't know everything).

If you don't like the court analogy, how about the gumball one... I show you a jar of gumballs and say that they have not been counted but that the number of gumballs is odd. Do you believe that the number is odd? If you don't have any reason to believe either way then you don't believe it is odd and you don't believe it is even. The answer to the specific question "do you believe the number is odd" is No because you do not hold that belief. In casual conversation people will probably say "I don't know" but that is going on to provide more information and to answer the expected next question "So you believe it is even?".

Answering No is accurate. With the god question I think it helps because when you've answered No to both "do you believe god exists" and "so you believe god does not exist" it knocks them off script. They have to stop and think through the implications of what you are saying.

Atheism: it's not just for communists any more!
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11-08-2015, 10:17 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
(10-08-2015 02:29 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  The point is that if Tomasia and drewpaul don't consider themselves to be 100% certain of god's existence, and only lean heavily towards there being a god, then they are actually admitting that they are agnostic about the existence of god, which makes them atheists.

That is an incredibly flawed false dilemma.

By being honest and saying that nothing can ever be known (100%) in its most absolute sense, every single person is an "agnostic". Likewise, agnostic =/= atheist... like really? If you believe that there is a 99% chance there is a God, that leaves the remaining 1% to say that you don't. Why are you rounding the other way?

For this to be a fair assessment it needs to work both ways. Like if you believe that there is a 99% chance there isn't a God, then obviously that 1% takes precedence and you're a theist.

See how ludicrous that is?

You're creating a non-existent problem based on a human condition called "not having omniscience".

Your questions are loaded as well. If you want to have an honest dialog with Christians stop with the dishonest BS.

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11-08-2015, 10:56 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
(11-08-2015 09:43 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Tomasia,

Why not agnosticism? You could be an agnostic and still believe that the god theory is still the most plausible. Why jump to the conclusion of god?

Do you think that there is any chance that you're wrong?

Agnostic as opposed to what gnostic?

I don't typically refer to myself as agnostic, because that terms seems to have a variety of conflicting meanings. In the way I think it tends to be applied by many atheists, it would imply that I am agnostic about everything I believe, such as I'm agnostic about my parent's being my biological parents. In this way I would be just as agnostic about their biological status, as I would be about God's existence.

The problem for me is that agnosticism, as it's conventionally understood, implies a sort of being on the fence. Like I'm agnostic on the question of whether you are married or not. If I said I am agnostic about the God's existence, and I am agnostic about God's existence, perhaps you can see the problem of equivocation here?

I believe God exist, without any added qualifiers. If someone where to ask how confident I was in regards to this belief, I'd say very confident, even more confident about it as time has gone. I believe it's quite unlikely that I'll ever end up being an non-believer, and it clearly wouldn't be because of lack of exposure to the view of atheists.
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11-08-2015, 11:11 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
(11-08-2015 09:22 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Perhaps you guys just don't like the wording. How about this?

Do you hold the belief that Mercury's core has more iridium than earth? If you don't hold that belief, then the answer is no. And likewise, I can ask, do you hold the belief that Mercury's core has less iridium than earth? You can also answer no to this question without any contradiction if you simply have no belief regarding which planet's core contains the most iridium.

It's not so much the wording, as it is what is that I'm communicating. And if I'm not speaking conventionally, than it is important that I clarify.

If you asked me if I believed you were married, what I would reply is that I don't know. Rather than, No.

If I said no, it would be read by most people to mean: "I believe you are not married". It wouldn't be apparent that what I was implying by no, is that i don't know one way or the other.

Here's what I would say is the colloquial/conventional definition of no, as per google:

No:
"used to indicate that something is quite the opposite of what is being specified."
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11-08-2015, 11:43 AM
RE: Questions for Tomasia and drewpaul
(11-08-2015 11:11 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(11-08-2015 09:22 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Perhaps you guys just don't like the wording. How about this?

Do you hold the belief that Mercury's core has more iridium than earth? If you don't hold that belief, then the answer is no. And likewise, I can ask, do you hold the belief that Mercury's core has less iridium than earth? You can also answer no to this question without any contradiction if you simply have no belief regarding which planet's core contains the most iridium.

It's not so much the wording, as it is what is that I'm communicating. And if I'm not speaking conventionally, than it is important that I clarify.

If you asked me if I believed you were married, what I would reply is that I don't know. Rather than, No.

If I said no, it would be read by most people to mean: "I believe you are not married". It wouldn't be apparent that what I was implying by no, is that i don't know one way or the other.

Here's what I would say is the colloquial/conventional definition of no, as per google:

No:
"used to indicate that something is quite the opposite of what is being specified."

Right, but by saying "no" you would be indicating that rather than holding that belief, you don't hold that belief. Not holding a particular belief is the opposite of holding a particular belief.

It's all good though...

One more question. Do you know that god exists?
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