The world of What-if?
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08-01-2012, 08:54 PM
The world of What-if?
One set of questions that I find increasingly annoying and especially useless are of the what-if variety. We all know the question "What if you're wrong?" And needless to say there are many others. These questions basically say "let's ignore the facts and pretend we live in a world where anything is possible, now what?" This is what I hear anyways. And often times they are not willing to entertain that question themselves (like the "what if you're wrong question?").

What if I'm wrong? Well what if the sky turned black and flying monkeys came raining down and you heard a witch's laugh off in the distance? What if the Earth really is flat? What if Nixon was set up? What if Chruchill and Stalin had a gay love affair? What if aliens do walk among us? What if everyone one of these questions is as valid as the next?

One of those questions is valid...guess which one?

Anyone got any good "what-if" questions they have been asked?

“Science is simply common sense at its best, that is, rigidly accurate in observation, and merciless to fallacy in logic.”
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08-01-2012, 09:04 PM
RE: The world of What-if?
What if you meet Gwyneth and she's nothing like you imagine?

If I meet Gwyneth, my head will explode. That's science, let's quit it with the fiction. Big Grin

If I was wrong, I wouldn't insist I were right, now would I? All those questions spiral into the abyss of absolutism. I got one absolute; everything else is relative, and I'm the crazy one. Go figure.

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08-01-2012, 09:05 PM
RE: The world of What-if?
The best "what if" response I've ever seen/heard was the YouTube video at the end of my "Why I'm an Atheist" article. The guy in the video just flat out nailed it - which pissed me off in a way because I could only dream of being talented enough to pull that on off...

http://centersolid.blogspot.com/2011/05/...heist.html

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08-01-2012, 10:18 PM
RE: The world of What-if?
(08-01-2012 08:54 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  One set of questions that I find increasingly annoying and especially useless are of the what-if variety. We all know the question "What if you're wrong?" And needless to say there are many others. These questions basically say "let's ignore the facts and pretend we live in a world where anything is possible, now what?" This is what I hear anyways. And often times they are not willing to entertain that question themselves (like the "what if you're wrong question?").

What if I'm wrong? Well what if the sky turned black and flying monkeys came raining down and you heard a witch's laugh off in the distance? What if the Earth really is flat? What if Nixon was set up? What if Chruchill and Stalin had a gay love affair? What if aliens do walk among us? What if everyone one of these questions is as valid as the next?

One of those questions is valid...guess which one?

Anyone got any good "what-if" questions they have been asked?

I entirely agree, that is I think there are valid "What if you're/I'm wrong?" questions. I'd say the "What if I'm wrong?" question is always valid for a rational skeptic. As is the "What if you're wrong?" one.

I don't accept the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics and it's valid for you to ask me "What if you're wrong?". If you do accept it, believe me, I will ask you that question.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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09-01-2012, 01:13 AM
RE: The world of What-if?
I think too often, theists see their god as something that is like a ticking bomb and they are bomb defusers who knows the right wire to cut in order to avoid the rather painful explosion.
- Go ahead atheist, you're so sure you know what wire to cut, but "What if you're wrong" ?

The atheist of course can find no evidence of a bomb because it's a mental fabrication of the theist. A delusion of the mind in which the theist is in constant conversation within his own mind with a host of other bomb experts and constantly looking through their guide book "bible" to discern how they should best approach the bomb.

I once posed the following -
What if there are two people, alive, locked inside a very large coffin - In 1000 words or less, Can your god write a short story describing how these two individuals came to be inside this coffin. Can he or she write it better than I can ? and alternatively, I am curious to know what kind of story you think your god would write ?

So this is a challenge on the scale of imaginative & creative writing. I contend that on this basis, a god and I are on equal footing.

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09-01-2012, 01:30 AM
RE: The world of What-if?
(09-01-2012 01:13 AM)Rahn127 Wrote:  So this is a challenge on the scale of imaginative & creative writing. I contend that on this basis, a god and I are on equal footing.

Equal? You just gotta pick up a pen. He's gotta go recruit a prophet, mission up a mountain, tell the guy to always swat fruitflies with a roundhouse kick and *then* mumble about some two randoms in a basket/coffin/suitcase depending on which translation from Hebrew you believe. Hardly a fair contest.
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09-01-2012, 02:57 AM
RE: The world of What-if?
If I'm wrong then it's god's fault...and he's a dick.

Because he would have given me a rational mind, placed me in a rational universe that follows uderstandable laws of physics, and left tangable evidence that suggests that there is no god, and no credible evidence that there is one. And will apparently punish me for coming to the only logical conclusion I could make from this situation.

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