Understanding and Truth
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07-03-2015, 06:33 AM (This post was last modified: 07-03-2015 07:03 AM by DLJ.)
RE: Understanding and Truth
(07-03-2015 05:51 AM)Chas Wrote:  
(06-03-2015 05:57 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  So it seems most people here overwhelming disagree.

That I could in fact be a christian, and yet have an honest understanding of various atheistic perspectives, and the counter arguments to theism. That I may be able to fully understand all the objections to my beliefs, and yet continue to be a believer. That it very well could be possible to be a believer, without depending on some fundamental misunderstanding. That I can fully understand my opposition and yet not agree with them.
...

That seems to be the gist of it. How to explain the fact that you are willing to replace the value of evidence and logic with your subjective value?

What makes you think that whatever it is you feel is somehow more valuable or true than that which can be supported by reality?

Hang on a tick!

Tommy,
Would it be safe to say that you understand the arguments against the existence of / belief in ... Zeus, for example? ... and presumably do not believe in that deity.

Do you not apply some form of (and therefore value) methodological naturalism to come to this conclusion?

Huh

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07-03-2015, 08:35 AM (This post was last modified: 07-03-2015 08:39 AM by Tomasia.)
RE: Understanding and Truth
(07-03-2015 06:33 AM)DLJ Wrote:  Hang on a tick!

Tommy,
Would it be safe to say that you understand the arguments against the existence of / belief in ... Zeus, for example? ... and presumably do not believe in that deity.

Do you not apply some form of (and therefore value) methodological naturalism to come to this conclusion?

Huh

Well, I doubt that I reject Zeus or the pagan pantheon for the same reasons you might. In fact I don't think it makes much sense to separate Zeus from the pagan worldview, the religions in which he was emblematic of.

In fact I'd say that reason that I reject others religions, are for the same reasons that I accept mine. That these religions are perceived, and rejected in the same sort of subjective observations.

These difference in values play a significant role here as well, that I understand other religions, other perspectives in a different light than unbelievers who subscribe to a different set of values.

An example of this would be, that many atheists often view religions as a premodern attempt to explain natural phenomenons, as a sort of precussor to scientific curiosity, but appeased by crude explanations. I don't believe this at all. And I think these different perceptions are likely a result of these differing values.

I think you may assume that this sort differing set of values is one, that I reserve exclusively to exploring the confines of my own particular religion, but this is not the case, in fact it has a great deal to do with how I see and evaluate a variety of things, particularly those in the human domain,
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07-03-2015, 08:59 AM
RE: Understanding and Truth
(07-03-2015 05:51 AM)Chas Wrote:  That seems to be the gist of it. How to explain the fact that you are willing to replace the value of evidence and logic with your subjective value?

I think what's meant here by evidence and logic, is the sort that's passes the muster of being scientifically vigorous. The sort of stuff we're dependent on when making observations about the external world around us, or in regards to our biological components. Aspects that break down into a sort of systematizing fashion.

For many unbelievers this seems to be advocated as the exclusive lens to perceive all of reality. For me it's just a tool in a tool box, a hammer made exclusively to deal with nails, but not very appropriate for screws, or to tighten a bolt. It has it's limits.

In fact if one were to go around with just a hammer, he'd just have a series of distorted objects he's created.

Quote: What makes you think that whatever it is you feel is somehow more valuable or true than that which can be supported by reality?

It's through these things that I conceive what reality is, what it means to be human, and what is predicament that we find ourselves in. It's the lens in which reality is conceived. And as result reality is likely to be conceived as a different thing for you, than it is for me, though both of our conceptions cannot be right.
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07-03-2015, 09:05 AM (This post was last modified: 07-03-2015 09:11 AM by DLJ.)
RE: Understanding and Truth
(07-03-2015 08:35 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  ...
... subjective observations.

OK. I admire your honesty.

(07-03-2015 08:35 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  ...
An example of this would be, that many atheists often view religions as a premodern attempt to explain natural phenomenons, as a sort of precussor to scientific curiosity, but appeased by crude explanations.
...

Sounds about right.

(07-03-2015 08:35 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  ... And I think these different perceptions are likely a result of these differing values.

Yup. The value we place on objective evidence.

I confess that I find this subjectivity somewhat bewildering.
Here's an exchange I had on Thursday with a nauseatingly (for me) christian filipina. She thinks she's my friend. I regard her as a patient.

Her: "I'm just reading my bible... I do have a soul...and I keep our friendship there."
Me: " Silly girl. Your bible is the 'claim' not the 'evidence'."
Her: "Works for me."
Me: I guess that by "Works for me" you mean that you feel safe in your delusion. That is not healthy."
Her: "The bible gives promises and not claims... and if you try it, very strong evidence is experienced. that's what I say works for me... call me whatever... i have a living hope!"
Me: "So there is no evidence in the babble. Thanks for confirming."
Her: "No evidence from just the text... what is amazing is if I read the text and decide to apply it... to try to... my consciousness is enriched... becomes even more powerful...and life becomes more than just a period of stayin earth [sic]... life becomes light."

I didn't reply to that because I could feel my brain cells committing suicide! But I was tempted to ask how dashing babies' heads against rocks, marrying your rapist, slavery, leaving your dead unburied or not investing in your future were things worth applying.

It's obvious that we are not even speaking the same language, that she places no value on evidence / has no understanding of the term. I'm just hoping she never serves on a jury.

(07-03-2015 08:35 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  ...
I think you may assume that this sort differing set of values is one, that I reserve exclusively to exploring the confines of my own particular religion, but this is not the case, in fact it has a great deal to do with how I see and evaluate a variety of things, particularly those in the human domain,

Obviously I find that incoherent and disappointing and also realise my failure to empathise with that way of thinking.

It is a redundant epistemology belonging to the childhood of our species.

Fortunately, we are growing out of it. Too slowly but it's happening.

Unsure

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07-03-2015, 09:35 AM
RE: Understanding and Truth
On the subject of hammers.

I've been working in construction for the past few years, building large industrial greenhouses and more recently building and remodeling residential homes.

Hammers have a large variety of uses and in fact, if all you had was a hammer, there is quite a lot you could do. I have taken a hammer into a demo job on a washroom and removed everything in preparation for all the new fixtures, vanity, tub and toilet to come in.

I've used them to pry apart boards or as a lever to move a truss into place. If you have the right hammer you can use it to measure a cut or chisel away some wood to make a locking mechanism fit better.

A hammer can distort a piece of wood and make it look weathered. You can strike certain rocks to chip away until you have an arrow head.

Hammers are a great tool, but if the mind using one only sees it for pounding in a nail, then thats sad.

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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07-03-2015, 06:17 PM
RE: Understanding and Truth
(07-03-2015 09:35 AM)Rahn127 Wrote:  On the subject of hammers.

I've been working in construction for the past few years, building large industrial greenhouses and more recently building and remodeling residential homes.

Hammers have a large variety of uses and in fact, if all you had was a hammer, there is quite a lot you could do. I have taken a hammer into a demo job on a washroom and removed everything in preparation for all the new fixtures, vanity, tub and toilet to come in.

I've used them to pry apart boards or as a lever to move a truss into place. If you have the right hammer you can use it to measure a cut or chisel away some wood to make a locking mechanism fit better.

A hammer can distort a piece of wood and make it look weathered. You can strike certain rocks to chip away until you have an arrow head.

Hammers are a great tool, but if the mind using one only sees it for pounding in a nail, then thats sad.

There's also the fact that equating the entirety of science to one simple tool is... well.... not quite accurate to say the least.

But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.

~ Umberto Eco
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07-03-2015, 06:43 PM
RE: Understanding and Truth
(05-03-2015 07:47 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  Can a person be a Christian, and yet have a genuine understanding of atheistic counter perspectives?

The only thing that can be said of any atheist is that we lack belief in god(s). Beyond that, all of us have various opinions on everything. Unlike religion, there are no statements of faith, or oaths, or creeds, or any other such nonsense or brain conditioning going on. (It is so beautiful. I could just cry.)
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07-03-2015, 07:37 PM
RE: Understanding and Truth
(07-03-2015 06:17 PM)evenheathen Wrote:  
(07-03-2015 09:35 AM)Rahn127 Wrote:  On the subject of hammers.

I've been working in construction for the past few years, building large industrial greenhouses and more recently building and remodeling residential homes.

Hammers have a large variety of uses and in fact, if all you had was a hammer, there is quite a lot you could do. I have taken a hammer into a demo job on a washroom and removed everything in preparation for all the new fixtures, vanity, tub and toilet to come in.

I've used them to pry apart boards or as a lever to move a truss into place. If you have the right hammer you can use it to measure a cut or chisel away some wood to make a locking mechanism fit better.

A hammer can distort a piece of wood and make it look weathered. You can strike certain rocks to chip away until you have an arrow head.

Hammers are a great tool, but if the mind using one only sees it for pounding in a nail, then thats sad.

There's also the fact that equating the entirety of science to one simple tool is... well.... not quite accurate to say the least.

Science is a toolbox, a workshop. Religion is wishful thinking.

Science creates knowledge. Religion creates fantasies.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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08-03-2015, 06:58 AM
RE: Understanding and Truth
(07-03-2015 08:59 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(07-03-2015 05:51 AM)Chas Wrote:  That seems to be the gist of it. How to explain the fact that you are willing to replace the value of evidence and logic with your subjective value?
I think what's meant here by evidence and logic, is the sort that's passes the muster of being scientifically vigorous. The sort of stuff we're dependent on when making observations about the external world around us, or in regards to our biological components. Aspects that break down into a sort of systematizing fashion.

So let's broaden the "hammer" from science to critical thinking. That is: Considering new claims or new evidence for claims on their merits, being ready to accept or reject claims on their evidence rather than relying on the filter of on one's own prior beliefs, and being ready to discard prior beliefs in favour of better explanations.

Do you have a pathway to truth that is inconsistent with that model? Would you describe your mechanism?

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
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08-03-2015, 08:19 AM (This post was last modified: 08-03-2015 08:22 AM by Tomasia.)
RE: Understanding and Truth
(07-03-2015 09:05 AM)DLJ Wrote:  
(07-03-2015 08:35 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  ...
I think you may assume that this sort differing set of values is one, that I reserve exclusively to exploring the confines of my own particular religion, but this is not the case, in fact it has a great deal to do with how I see and evaluate a variety of things, particularly those in the human domain,

Obviously I find that incoherent and disappointing and also realise my failure to empathise with that way of thinking.

It is a redundant epistemology belonging to the childhood of our species.

Fortunately, we are growing out of it. Too slowly but it's happening.

Unsure

I think you should empathize.

While I'm not ashamed to admit the role and confidence I have in viewing the world through my own subjective experiences and observations, in reality pretty much everyone does the same thing, whether they acknowledge this or not. The only times in which atheists have a real problem with this, when the conclusion being drawn doesn't align to an ontological naturalism, or in those cases where those conclusions are an affront to any established science.

This is particularly the case when dealing with the human domain rather than observation regarding the external world. Atheists views on religions are often shaped to a large extent by their own personal experiences with religion. A person who had a very bad experience with religion tends to see it more negatively than one who might not have had a bad experience, who might have rejected religion, but whose own experiences might have been positive in most respects.

We're sort of dependent on our "theory of mind", for human understanding. Since we're limited in observing other minds directly, we do so through introspection of our own mind, of our own thoughts and desires, the collection of our experiences, that we use to decipher the emotions, purposes, and actions of others.

Your agreement with the view that, "religions were a premodern attempt to explain natural phenomenons, as a sort of precussor to scientific curiosity, but appeased by crude explanations", is one that you derive by perceiving your own particular curiosities and inferring that they were present in these early individuals, expressed in their religious beliefs.

I have a different set of curiosities, which I also associate as operating in these early individuals serving as the basis for why religions arose, and I think mines are more faithful to that early picture, conveying a larger explanatory scope than one's you attempt to associate with them. It's not that we're operating on two different undefined methodologies here, but rather quite similar ones. Neither of us can really appeal to human biology, or the hard sciences in regards to these observations for support, because they're fairly limited in this regard, and may always be to some extinct. I would just hold your own experiences are more limited than mine in regard to the question of religion, and therefore you're not able to draw the same conclusions.
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