Why I'm a Theist
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08-08-2015, 02:05 PM (This post was last modified: 08-08-2015 02:09 PM by Matt Finney.)
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(08-08-2015 01:20 PM)Free Wrote:  
(08-08-2015 01:05 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Wow, you just went from "seems less likely" to "eliminated" in the same sentence.

Are you certain you read that correctly?

Where did I say "seems less likely?"

Consider

Yep, read it again. You said one option was more likely than the other (which is your opinion), therefore, the less likely is eliminated.

(08-08-2015 01:20 PM)Free Wrote:  To demonstrate the possibility, evidence must be supplied. This is true in all things.

In our lexicon we tend to say "anything is possible," but it it really possible? To qualify it as being possible, we must demonstrate it with evidence, otherwise the intellectually honest position to take is that it is not possible.

Wrong, the intellectually honest position is to admit that you don't know whether or not it is possible. You could say something like "for all we know, it could be possible, but it also might be impossible....we just don't have enough evidence to make the call either way."

Quote:However, I would agree that it is unreasonable to claim either possibility or impossibility without evidence, but again, certain phenomena are either possible or not, regardless of what any human thinks.....i.e. we don't need to know that it's possible for it to be possible (same with impossible).

(08-08-2015 01:20 PM)Free Wrote:  Until the positive claim has been qualified with evidence, then it is perfectly reasonable to stand upon the position that the existence and possible existence of something has not been proven, and therefore should rightfully be considered false.

Understand, if something does not exist, it is impossible by the very definition of the word.

Humans thousands of years ago didn't know that bacteria existed. They had no microscopes and no way to detect it. They had no evidence for it's existence. However, it would have been foolish to make the claim that lack of evidence = evidence for the lack of existence.

By your logic, we would have to assume that everything that has not yet been discovered, doesn't exist. This is silly because we discover things all the time. Are we to pretend that things don't exist until we discover them? That's silly.
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08-08-2015, 02:16 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
There's a world of difference between admitting something might exist, and denying the positive assertion of someone who says X exists despite us never having observed anything that seriously gives the impression that it would/could/should.

It's especially suspect when X is something that was once a common belief for NUMEROUS things (e.g. thunder) that we now know to be not caused by the "intentionality" of beings but are in fact common natural occurrences.

This person is trying to get us to say that 1) Thor intentionally causing the thunder and 2) the lightning naturally causing the air molecules to expand so rapidly that they create sound waves are equally plausible.

If you are to posit a supernatural explanation for something unknown, where all other similar things have turned out to have a natural explanation, you'd better have some serious backing to your ideas. "It looks like it" is not even close to serious, especially given that we've already shown the human tendency to ascribe causality to things that are now KNOWN to be unintentional-causation. (Again, the lightning, or the Germ Theory of Disease.)

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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08-08-2015, 02:21 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
Come to think of it, the Germ Theory of Disease is a better example, since we still have idiots trying to assert that AIDS is "God's Revenge™ on Teh Gayz", or that hurricanes are punishment for New Orleans' tolerance of "sin".

Humans like to imagine intentionality where a rational person (or anyone who looks closely) sees simple natural laws at work. We may not understand all the natural laws, yet, and that's fine... but to allow people to fall back on the intellectually lazy notion that "Yahweh is sending us diseases to punish us for our sins" is ridiculous!

Might as well go back to praying over/blessing our food in the desperate hope that the evil spirits within won't harm us.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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08-08-2015, 02:28 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(08-08-2015 02:05 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(08-08-2015 01:20 PM)Free Wrote:  Are you certain you read that correctly?

Where did I say "seems less likely?"

Consider

Yep, read it again. You said one option was more likely than the other (which is your opinion), therefore, the less likely is eliminated.

And still you have not demonstrated where you placed in quotes as if quoting me where I said "seems less likely."

I said no such thing.

Quote:
(08-08-2015 01:20 PM)Free Wrote:  To demonstrate the possibility, evidence must be supplied. This is true in all things.

In our lexicon we tend to say "anything is possible," but it it really possible? To qualify it as being possible, we must demonstrate it with evidence, otherwise the intellectually honest position to take is that it is not possible.

Wrong, the intellectually honest position is to admit that you don't know whether or not it is possible.

Incorrect.

When there is no evidence to support said possibility, we DO know something. We DO know that there is no evidence to support said possibility.

We evaluate all claims of existence upon the evidence supplied. If there is no evidence to support a claim of existence, it is intellectually honest to conclude non existence.


Quote:You could say something like "for all we know, it could be possible, but it also might be impossible....we just don't have enough evidence to make the call either way."

We cannot make claims based upon what we do not know. We make claims based upon our knowledge, not based upon a lack of it.

When we know that something has no evidence to support it's existence, we can claim that it does not exist based upon that knowledge.

Quote:
(08-08-2015 01:20 PM)Free Wrote:  Until the positive claim has been qualified with evidence, then it is perfectly reasonable to stand upon the position that the existence and possible existence of something has not been proven, and therefore should rightfully be considered false.

Understand, if something does not exist, it is impossible by the very definition of the word.

Humans thousands of years ago didn't know that bacteria existed. They had no microscopes and no way to detect it. They had no evidence for it's existence. However, it would have been foolish to make the claim that lack of evidence = evidence for the lack of existence.

That was then, this is now. We cannot speak to the future, we must speak in real-time, with real-time knowledge.

Quote:By your logic, we would have to assume that everything that has not yet been discovered, doesn't exist.

Nothing exists until we discover it.

Quote: This is silly because we discover things all the time. Are we to pretend that things don't exists until we discover them? That's silly.

Nothing exists until it is discovered.

We are human, and that's our reality.

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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08-08-2015, 02:34 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(08-08-2015 02:28 PM)Free Wrote:  
(08-08-2015 02:05 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Yep, read it again. You said one option was more likely than the other (which is your opinion), therefore, the less likely is eliminated.

And still you have not demonstrated where you placed in quotes as if quoting me where I said "seems less likely."

I said no such thing.

Quote:Wrong, the intellectually honest position is to admit that you don't know whether or not it is possible.

Incorrect.

When there is no evidence to support said possibility, we DO know something. We DO know that there is no evidence to support said possibility.

We evaluate all claims of existence upon the evidence supplied. If there is no evidence to support a claim of existence, it is intellectually honest to conclude non existence.


Quote:You could say something like "for all we know, it could be possible, but it also might be impossible....we just don't have enough evidence to make the call either way."

We cannot make claims based upon what we do not know. We make claims based upon our knowledge, not based upon a lack of it.

When we know that something has no evidence to support it's existence, we can claim that it does not exist based upon that knowledge.

Quote:Humans thousands of years ago didn't know that bacteria existed. They had no microscopes and no way to detect it. They had no evidence for it's existence. However, it would have been foolish to make the claim that lack of evidence = evidence for the lack of existence.

That was then, this is now. We cannot speak to the future, we must speak in real-time, with real-time knowledge.

Quote:By your logic, we would have to assume that everything that has not yet been discovered, doesn't exist.

Nothing exists until we discover it.

Quote: This is silly because we discover things all the time. Are we to pretend that things don't exists until we discover them? That's silly.

Nothing exists until it is discovered.

We are human, and that's our reality.

"Each year, scientists discover an average of 15,000 new species" http://news.discovery.com/animals/new-sp...111213.htm

You realize that it sounds silly to say that these species didn't exist until we discovered them, right?
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08-08-2015, 02:36 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(08-08-2015 02:28 PM)Free Wrote:  
(08-08-2015 02:05 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  Yep, read it again. You said one option was more likely than the other (which is your opinion), therefore, the less likely is eliminated.

And still you have not demonstrated where you placed in quotes as if quoting me where I said "seems less likely."

I said no such thing.

Wow, this is exhausting. Ok, why was one option eliminated? Drinking Beverage
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08-08-2015, 02:38 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(08-08-2015 02:16 PM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  There's a world of difference between admitting something might exist, and denying the positive assertion of someone who says X exists despite us never having observed anything that seriously gives the impression that it would/could/should.

It's especially suspect when X is something that was once a common belief for NUMEROUS things (e.g. thunder) that we now know to be not caused by the "intentionality" of beings but are in fact common natural occurrences.

This person is trying to get us to say that 1) Thor intentionally causing the thunder and 2) the lightning naturally causing the air molecules to expand so rapidly that they create sound waves are equally plausible.

If you are to posit a supernatural explanation for something unknown, where all other similar things have turned out to have a natural explanation, you'd better have some serious backing to your ideas. "It looks like it" is not even close to serious, especially given that we've already shown the human tendency to ascribe causality to things that are now KNOWN to be unintentional-causation. (Again, the lightning, or the Germ Theory of Disease.)

I think we're pretty much in agreement.

The only point that I want to make is that lack of evidence for existence, does not equal evidence for non-existence.
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08-08-2015, 02:45 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
We know that lack of evidence for existence is not evidence for non-existence. No one has ever denied that, here.

Our assertion is that lack of evidence in the face of more likely/consistent explanations, based on the evidence we do have, is enough to say that those asserting the new concept may safely be ignored.

That's why we're talking about the pixies. I don't know that pixies don't exist, but given what I do know, they're more than just a little bit implausible when asserted as an explanation for things that most likely have an explanation similar to other concepts of the same sort.

Asserting that a "god of the gaps" exists in our gaps of knowledge is a special pleading, given that we have found naturalistic explanations for nearly everything we once thought to be the work of the gods.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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08-08-2015, 02:48 PM
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(08-08-2015 01:09 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(08-08-2015 01:07 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  Do you mean "Yes it's the driving force of science"?

No it's not the driving force of science,

Science has no "driving force".
The motivations of those who do it are as multiple as those using the method.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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08-08-2015, 03:00 PM (This post was last modified: 08-08-2015 03:06 PM by Free.)
RE: Why I'm a Theist
(08-08-2015 02:36 PM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(08-08-2015 02:28 PM)Free Wrote:  And still you have not demonstrated where you placed in quotes as if quoting me where I said "seems less likely."

I said no such thing.

Wow, this is exhausting. Ok, why was one option eliminated? Drinking Beverage

Seriously?

What part of "there is no evidence to support it" eludes you?

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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