Refuting "the problem of evil"
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21-08-2014, 07:00 AM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 04:41 AM)phil.a Wrote:  OK I'm not totally sure where you still see the contradiction, but I think it perhaps exists in your conceptual separation of "god" from humans. I would say that separation isn't real, e.g. you are "god".

For example, I have been "created" by whatever (evolution, emergence, call it what you will). I find myself in this body, and inside a psychology, I find that I have a mind which has thinking skills, I find that i can mine my awareness for creative insight, as a consequence of all of this, I find that I can create electronic circuits - I am an electronic design engineer.

Whilst at a first order sense, my circuits are my creation, in a second order sense they are an indirect creation of my parents (who provided my physical body) and my university (who provided the knowledge I leverage).

Well that process of inheritance stretches right back to the big bang, if you believe in cause and effect. Or even "before" the big bang in the sense that the big bang "happened".

So, whatever context exists for the creation of the universe is actually indirectly (through me) in 2014 - designing electronic circuits.

Just for the sake of argument, let's label that context as "god".

Phil
You should have said something earlier. All this time, I thought you were a theist who is arguing that the God of classical theism is compatible with the existence of pain. I suppose that concludes our discussion, provided that there are no more disagreements left.

Thanks for the opportunity, I enjoyed it. Smile

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21-08-2014, 07:06 AM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 04:41 AM)phil.a Wrote:  Just for the sake of argument, let's label that context as "god".

Phil

Just for the sake of clarity, let's not. Drinking Beverage

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21-08-2014, 07:15 AM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 05:37 AM)phil.a Wrote:  
(21-08-2014 04:29 AM)Chas Wrote:  You do not seem to appreciate the fact of emergent properties. Where do the properties of table salt come from?
It is a useful and necessary substance composed of a poisonous gas and an explosive metal. Do those atoms have 'saltiness' in them? Is 'saltiness' a fundamental attribute?
Do hydrogen and oxygen atoms have an essence of 'wetness' about them?

I feel I do understand the phenomenon of emergent properties, the issue of emergence is one of my greatest interests. Whilst it is true that the properties of water are in no way visible in hydrogen and oxygen atoms, in my opinion it would involve magical thinking for me to suppose that the properties of a molecule are not in some sense present in it's constituent atoms. The properties of water become revealed when hydrogen atoms and oxygen atoms enter a process arrangement, but I don't think it's rational to suppose they are magicked up out of nowhere, I think it's more rational to suppose the properties are present in a somewhat out of sight manner in the constituent atoms.

In my opinion, any idea that the attributes of water have been summoned up out of completely nothing is pure magical thinking which denies cause and effect.

Which shows that you don't actually understand the concept of emergent properties, either definitionally or conceptually. A compound has properties that arise out of the interactions of the constituent atoms - the atoms do not have those properties.

Quote:I would say however that emergent properties have nevertheless been summoned up out of a Zero (as has the entire universe) but it has not been summoned up out of a Null as you seem to be claiming (in the sense that Zero exists on a cartesian coordinate system whereas Null does not).

Out of that largely incoherent mess of words, all I can say is that I said no such thing.

Quote:Can you find truth in the idea that (a) consciousness is present in patterns of matter and energy, and (b) depth, or intensity of consciousness is relative to the complexity of the process arrangement of the matter and energy?

I don't think I quite agree with that, but it's close.

Quote:Because my point would be that emergent complexity amplifies or multiples but does not fundamentally create Consciousness out of nowhere, e.g. out of Null.

Nope. An emergent property is created whole out of the interactions of the constituent parts, none of which have that property.

Quote:Also there is an issue here of assumed primacy, that consciousness emerges from complexity when I think it's just as reasonable to suppose that a move towards complexity is driven by consciousness.

What is the mechanism for consciousness driving complexity?

Quote:E.g. it seems to be operating from the givens of a materialism perspective to suppose that one fathers the other.

Phil

Could you restate that last bit?

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21-08-2014, 08:48 AM
Re: RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 04:41 AM)phil.a Wrote:  
(21-08-2014 02:41 AM)Vosur Wrote:  I must be missing something here, because I see no attempt at reconciliation. If anything, the last paragraph gives me the impression that you think the state of things can be better explained by the absence of (an omnibenevolent) God as well.

Would you care to elaborate on your stance regarding this matter?

OK I'm not totally sure where you still see the contradiction, but I think it perhaps exists in your conceptual separation of "god" from humans. I would say that separation isn't real, e.g. you are "god".

For example, I have been "created" by whatever (evolution, emergence, call it what you will). I find myself in this body, and inside a psychology, I find that I have a mind which has thinking skills, I find that i can mine my awareness for creative insight, as a consequence of all of this, I find that I can create electronic circuits - I am an electronic design engineer.

Whilst at a first order sense, my circuits are my creation, in a second order sense they are an indirect creation of my parents (who provided my physical body) and my university (who provided the knowledge I leverage).

Well that process of inheritance stretches right back to the big bang, if you believe in cause and effect. Or even "before" the big bang in the sense that the big bang "happened".

So, whatever context exists for the creation of the universe is actually indirectly (through me) in 2014 - designing electronic circuits.

Just for the sake of argument, let's label that context as "god".

Phil

What's the point of saying that's God or humans are gods ok our own right? There is no problem of evil if that's all you mean by God.

If you still are talking about classical terms of God. There's no reason to think physiological projections are loopholes for omnipotence/omnipresence.

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21-08-2014, 09:09 AM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 05:37 AM)phil.a Wrote:  I feel I do understand the phenomenon of emergent properties, the issue of emergence is one of my greatest interests. Whilst it is true that the properties of water are in no way visible in hydrogen and oxygen atoms, in my opinion it would involve magical thinking for me to suppose that the properties of a molecule are not in some sense present in it's constituent atoms.

Relevant words highlighted.

Your opinion is not privileged. The universe need not make intuitive sense to you.

(21-08-2014 05:37 AM)phil.a Wrote:  The properties of water become revealed when hydrogen atoms and oxygen atoms enter a process arrangement, but I don't think it's rational to suppose they are magicked up out of nowhere, I think it's more rational to suppose the properties are present in a somewhat out of sight manner in the constituent atoms.

That's an incoherent supposition.

It's about as compelling as elan vital.

(21-08-2014 05:37 AM)phil.a Wrote:  In my opinion, any idea that the attributes of water have been summoned up out of completely nothing is pure magical thinking which denies cause and effect.

No one has ever said emergent properties arise out of "nothing".

They arise from higher-order interaction and are not strictly contained within lower-order interactions. That's literally the definition of emergence.

Your homework is to read this.

(21-08-2014 05:37 AM)phil.a Wrote:  I would say however that emergent properties have nevertheless been summoned up out of a Zero (as has the entire universe) but it has not been summoned up out of a Null as you seem to be claiming (in the sense that Zero exists on a cartesian coordinate system whereas Null does not).

Incoherent again.

Everything about the universe - including spacetime - is contingent on there being a universe.

The universe is not a nesting doll. Its rules do not exist beyond itself.

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21-08-2014, 11:58 AM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 07:00 AM)Vosur Wrote:  You should have said something earlier. All this time, I thought you were a theist who is arguing that the God of classical theism is compatible with the existence of pain. I suppose that concludes our discussion, provided that there are no more disagreements left.

Thanks for the opportunity, I enjoyed it. Smile

LOL, no - I am no theist!

I guess it might help people make sense of me if they have a box to put me in though, so I'll identify here loosely as an "Integral thinker".

The idea of Integral thinking is not to fight over who is right or wrong in an absolute sense, but rather to develop an Integral meta-perspective as a (integrating) container for all relative human perspectives. Eg to find a way of allowing (even apparently contradictory) relative human truth claims to make non-contradictory sense.

In a nutshell, this is done bey relativising all truth claims to the speaker's psychology.

On that subject, I don't think that classical theist ideas really contradict my previous post to you, at least not when both are held in a meta-perspective.

Phil
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21-08-2014, 12:17 PM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
Many people have this idea of a god as being "kind" and obsessed with every move its creation is making. Thus, when evil happens, how could a god permit that? This is largely a culmination or concoction I should say, from the Abrahamic faiths.

If you don't do "good" (meaning follow God because he is soooo good) you must be against good, thus against "God."

If a god exists, why do people assume he is "good?" Not saying he/it would be evil but maybe he/it is merely...neutral.

My opinion, there is no such thing as evil, per se. This is a religious notion. Rather, I believe people make good or bad choices. And I believe in karma, you will reap what you sow, inevitably.

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21-08-2014, 01:45 PM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 07:15 AM)Chas Wrote:  A compound has properties that arise out of the interactions of the constituent atoms - the atoms do not have those properties.

Correct. And it's a property of atoms that they contain known compound properties as a potential.

Granted, science can't predict the qualities of the compound in advance of it appearing, emergence inevitably generates radical new novelty. That's a separate issue though, that's about the limits of the understanding of science it's not about an absence of cause and effect.

Cause and effect is easily provable, if I put a match to hydrogen and oxygen, I will arrive at water.

The potentiality of water in hydrogen and oxygen is an abstract property, a property that might in no way be predicted until the molecule emerges, but nevertheless - it's a known property of the atoms.

Quote:
Quote:I would say however that emergent properties have nevertheless been summoned up out of a Zero (as has the entire universe) but it has not been summoned up out of a Null as you seem to be claiming (in the sense that Zero exists on a cartesian coordinate system whereas Null does not).

Out of that largely incoherent mess of words, all I can say is that I said no such thing.


So in your understanding, how are the concepts of "zero" and "null" differentiated?

Quote:
Quote:Also there is an issue here of assumed primacy, that consciousness emerges from complexity when I think it's just as reasonable to suppose that a move towards complexity is driven by consciousness.

What is the mechanism for consciousness driving complexity?

From the perspective that it does, I see the transcindentals of Beauty, Goodness and Truth as both attractors (creating vectors, or places to head for), but also as positions (places to stand from which to reach beyond themselves). I'd say that the underlying nature of emergence as process is a dialectic spiral which cycles indefinitely through the principles of Beauty, Goodness and Truth, e.g. once Truth is reached it moves on to a (higher order) Beauty.

To give a concrete example, I see Truth as an emergent property of Goodness. Well, on this thread we have a bunch of people coming together in relationship (goodness), in debate, with a (hopeful) emergent outcome of Truth. I've already had new insights as a result of this debate, so that's already a reality for me, hopefully others had had a similar experience of it.

Quote:
Quote:E.g. it seems to be operating from the givens of a materialism perspective to suppose that one fathers the other.

Could you restate that last bit?

It seems to me that you consider consciousness to be an emergent property of matter, in that chronologically matter arrived first in the cosmos, and then some time later, consciousness emerged in matter (as a radical new emergent novelty). Please correct me if that's not a correct reflection of your position.

Phil
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21-08-2014, 02:03 PM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 01:45 PM)phil.a Wrote:  
(21-08-2014 07:15 AM)Chas Wrote:  A compound has properties that arise out of the interactions of the constituent atoms - the atoms do not have those properties.

Correct. And it's a property of atoms that they contain known compound properties as a potential.

Define "potential"; as best I can tell it's just a deepity you made up.

(21-08-2014 01:45 PM)phil.a Wrote:  Granted, science can't predict the qualities of the compound in advance of it appearing, emergence inevitably generates radical new novelty. That's a separate issue though, that's about the limits of the understanding of science it's not about an absence of cause and effect.

No, that's fundamentally misunderstanding. Emergence has nothing to do with causality in that sense. You appear to be misusing the word "predict" (as suggested by your use of "in advance").

(21-08-2014 01:45 PM)phil.a Wrote:  Cause and effect is easily provable, if I put a match to hydrogen and oxygen, I will arrive at water.

Or peroxide, or any number of other things...

Nucleonic physics does not predict molecules. The wave equations for lone hydrogen do not predict hydrogen molecules. The properties and behaviours of ensembles are simply not present in their constituent elements alone.

Calling that potential is meaningless.Shocking

(21-08-2014 01:45 PM)phil.a Wrote:  The potentiality of water in hydrogen and oxygen is an abstract property, a property that might in no way be predicted until the molecule emerges, but nevertheless - it's a known property of the atoms.

No. It's a consequence of their properties. Do you understand the difference?

(21-08-2014 01:45 PM)phil.a Wrote:  From the perspective that it does, I see the transcindentals of Beauty, Goodness and Truth as both attractors (creating vectors, or places to head for), but also as positions (places to stand from which to reach beyond themselves). I'd say that the underlying nature of emergence as process is a dialectic spiral which cycles indefinitely through the principles of Beauty, Goodness and Truth, e.g. once Truth is reached it moves on to a (higher order) Beauty.

To give a concrete example, I see Truth as an emergent property of Goodness. Well, on this thread we have a bunch of people coming together in relationship (goodness), in debate, with a (hopeful) emergent outcome of Truth. I've already had new insights as a result of this debate, so that's already a reality for me, hopefully others had had a similar experience of it.

Dodgy
Are you Deepak Chopra?

(21-08-2014 01:45 PM)phil.a Wrote:  It seems to me that you consider consciousness to be an emergent property of matter, in that chronologically matter arrived first in the cosmos, and then some time later, consciousness emerged in matter (as a radical new emergent novelty). Please correct me if that's not a correct reflection of your position.

This once again demonstrates a lack of understanding of what is meant by emergent. No temporal relation is implied.

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21-08-2014, 02:16 PM
RE: Refuting "the problem of evil"
(21-08-2014 04:29 AM)Chas Wrote:  
(21-08-2014 04:12 AM)phil.a Wrote:  I agree consciousness is not "supernatural" (there is no "supernatural", that's an irrational concept), and I'd fully agree depth of awareness and complexity of perspective is an emergent property of complicated brains, but if consciousness itself is not some sort of fundamental property of matter, can you tell me where it comes from? Surely since a brain is made out of cells, consciousness in a rudimentary proto-sense must be some sort of attribute of cells? And since cells are made of molecules, surely consciousness must be some (yet further more abstract and dilute) attribute of chemical molecules? And so on, down into more elemental expressions of matter.

It seems to me that if I argue that there's no actual reality separate from the physical universe, then there's no position from which to argue that consciousness is not a fundamental attribute of all matter.

Except for the little problem of there being absolutely no evidence for that, nor any conceivable mechanism. So, there's that.

You do not seem to appreciate the fact of emergent properties. Where do the properties of table salt come from?
It is a useful and necessary substance composed of a poisonous gas and an explosive metal. Do those atoms have 'saltiness' in them? Is 'saltiness' a fundamental attribute?
Do hydrogen and oxygen atoms have an essence of 'wetness' about them?

Quote:And since (as noted above) all matter and energy sum to Zero, then consciousness itself must be present in "Zero". If you agree with my reasoning there, consider the implications of that.

No, I don't agree. That is an incoherent concept. Matter exists and consciousness is an emergent property of complex patterns of matter and energy. If the sum of the mass/energy of the universe is zero, that speaks to its origin, but not to its existing properties.

I was going to answer Phil's points but Chas has done a wonderful Job. Smile

A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence -
David Hume


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