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Natural explanation

EtrnlVw
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10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.
RoderickSpode
Posts: 2,371
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10/17/2014 1:16:39 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.
I agree. When we look at the various pyramids, we don't see the individuals who put them together, but we know they were created by intelligent design. Of course, in that scenario someone can easily point out that we see humans today, we know they existed back then, but in contrast we don't see God in physical form like we fellow man who we can easily attribute ancient design to.

However, I think the testimony of men throughout the ages testifying one way or another of a creator/god/God is in fact evidence. Certainly in Biblical scripture, God has chosen men to testify of Him. The problem, I think, is that there is a tendency of some sort in human nature to reject a testimony from a mere man. And I have to admit, before I became a believer, I did the very same thing. This of course may vary per individual, or not always apply. But...in the intellectual forefront of society, testimony of man is not highly regarded in terms of testifying to of a creator. It tends to go against intellectual stimuli.

In addition, I think there's a tendency that has probably always existed to exalt modern over ancient. The idea that we're progressing in all aspects of life, overlooking continuous flaws that may render modern man in the very same boat as ancients who we now know held to false beliefs and conclusions. Today, there's a product on the market conveying a message that atheism=intellectual superiority.
Benshapiro
Posts: 3,954
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10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work. I mentioned this in my OP of my topic "God will always exist".
DPMartin
Posts: 1,096
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10/17/2014 2:19:25 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

Maybe it could be said that it"s like if someone builds a house and by examination of the house that person isn"t a physical part of the house, then the house wasn"t build by someone. And the builder of the house could still be dwelling in the house even though he can"t be found in the parts of the house.
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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10/17/2014 3:23:50 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

I believe it comes down to the reason for belief.

There are some people who believe because they think that X could only have come about via the intervention of god. If, in fact, X can come about without the need of a "god hypothesis", then it no longer supports the notion.

It doesn't defeat the notion, either, however, the point is that those claiming there IS anything (in this case, specifically that there is a God) should be able to provide some reason that they think so.

If their only reason is that "X could ONLY come about through divine intervention", and it can be demonstrated that that's not the only way for it to come about, then they have no valid reason for the position any more.

It is more of a response point, than a point in its own right. It's not "X can come about through means other than divine intervention, therefore god doesn't exist", it's "the assertion is that X cannot come about through means other than divine intervention, therefore God exists--X CAN come about through means other than divine intervention, therefore the premise is faulty and the conclusion unsupported."
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KafkaF
Posts: 103
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10/17/2014 3:34:33 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

The point is that these natural explanations eliminate the need for a supreme being. If something is neither needed to exist, nor it has any evidence to support it's existence, it most likely doesn't exist.

We know how caves form - through the dissolution of stone with water, and we have evidence for this. We could also say that caves were in fact dug out by dwarfs. The natural explanation doesn't eliminate the possibility of dwarfs actually making caves, but... I think you get the point.
SNP1
Posts: 2,403
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10/17/2014 5:19:45 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 3:23:50 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

I believe it comes down to the reason for belief.

There are some people who believe because they think that X could only have come about via the intervention of god. If, in fact, X can come about without the need of a "god hypothesis", then it no longer supports the notion.

It doesn't defeat the notion, either, however, the point is that those claiming there IS anything (in this case, specifically that there is a God) should be able to provide some reason that they think so.

If their only reason is that "X could ONLY come about through divine intervention", and it can be demonstrated that that's not the only way for it to come about, then they have no valid reason for the position any more.

It is more of a response point, than a point in its own right. It's not "X can come about through means other than divine intervention, therefore god doesn't exist", it's "the assertion is that X cannot come about through means other than divine intervention, therefore God exists--X CAN come about through means other than divine intervention, therefore the premise is faulty and the conclusion unsupported."

+1
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Beastt
Posts: 5,135
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10/18/2014 1:19:09 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

If everything is explained without God, then even if some disembodied intelligence were to exist, how would it qualify as "God"? It doesn't do anything.
"If we believe absurdities we shall commit atrocities." -- Voltaire
dee-em
Posts: 6,456
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10/18/2014 5:46:11 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work.

I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident.

What you probably meant to say is that knowing how something works doesn't necessarily explain why it exists. The answer, in most cases, is that physical phenomena such as the examples I gave are inevitable according to the inexorable laws of nature.

You will undoubtedly raise life as an exception. Why a giraffe or a human being? The problem here is that you assume purpose. This is an unwarranted assumption. All species on Earth are, in essence, the result of chance mutations. Therefore asking why is not a meaningful question. Evolution has no goal or end result in mind.

As others have pointed out, natural explanations don't refute the existence of a creator entity. However, they eliminate the necessity of one.
dee-em
Posts: 6,456
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10/18/2014 6:05:32 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 2:19:25 PM, DPMartin wrote:

Maybe it could be said that it"s like if someone builds a house and by examination of the house that person isn"t a physical part of the house, then the house wasn"t build by someone. And the builder of the house could still be dwelling in the house even though he can"t be found in the parts of the house.

The problem you have is that we know houses are built by people. When we see a house we can safely conclude, from direct experience, that it was built by someone (or a group of people). Therefore the house is evidence for its builder, whether he resides in the house or not.

The analogy you are trying to make with the universe and god (via house and builder) fails because we have no experience of gods creating universes. Therefore our universe cannot be used as evidence for a creator. Your analogy doesn't work since there is no common basis between the two scenarios.
Beastt
Posts: 5,135
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10/18/2014 6:41:15 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 2:19:25 PM, DPMartin wrote:
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

Maybe it could be said that it"s like if someone builds a house and by examination of the house that person isn"t a physical part of the house, then the house wasn"t build by someone. And the builder of the house could still be dwelling in the house even though he can"t be found in the parts of the house.

If the builder is living in the house, there will be evidence for the builder, within the house. There's no evidence of anything supernatural, anywhere.
"If we believe absurdities we shall commit atrocities." -- Voltaire
Otokage
Posts: 2,347
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10/18/2014 6:51:27 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

But if we found evidence that this was created or can be created by natural phenomenom, why would you insist it was created by a supernatural, and therefore not likely, phenomenom?
Otokage
Posts: 2,347
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10/18/2014 7:01:04 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 1:16:39 PM, RoderickSpode wrote:
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.
I agree. When we look at the various pyramids, we don't see the individuals who put them together, but we know they were created by intelligent design. Of course, in that scenario someone can easily point out that we see humans today, we know they existed back then, but in contrast we don't see God in physical form like we fellow man who we can easily attribute ancient design to.

However, I think the testimony of men throughout the ages testifying one way or another of a creator/god/God is in fact evidence. Certainly in Biblical scripture, God has chosen men to testify of Him. The problem, I think, is that there is a tendency of some sort in human nature to reject a testimony from a mere man. And I have to admit, before I became a believer, I did the very same thing. This of course may vary per individual, or not always apply. But...in the intellectual forefront of society, testimony of man is not highly regarded in terms of testifying to of a creator. It tends to go against intellectual stimuli.

In addition, I think there's a tendency that has probably always existed to exalt modern over ancient. The idea that we're progressing in all aspects of life, overlooking continuous flaws that may render modern man in the very same boat as ancients who we now know held to false beliefs and conclusions. Today, there's a product on the market conveying a message that atheism=intellectual superiority.

We may know who built pyramids because there's writings of scribes telling us who built them. But I'm not agree that "we know pyramids were made by intelligent design just by looking at them". If I were to show you snowflakes for the first time, you would say that there's no doubt at all that they were made by a skilled jewelry maker, and yet they are just a product of nature. There's plenty of examples like this one, and we just have to accept that galaxies, planets, and life, are just examples like the snowflakes.
Benshapiro
Posts: 3,954
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10/18/2014 12:12:56 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 5:46:11 AM, dee-em wrote:
At 10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work.

I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident.

I disagree. The difference between asking "how" and "why" is that "how" only refers to unintentional results and "why" only refers to intentional results. Are you arguing that anything naturally occurring occurs intentionally towards some end?

What you probably meant to say is that knowing how something works doesn't necessarily explain why it exists. The answer, in most cases, is that physical phenomena such as the examples I gave are inevitable according to the inexorable laws of nature.

You will undoubtedly raise life as an exception. Why a giraffe or a human being? The problem here is that you assume purpose. This is an unwarranted assumption. All species on Earth are, in essence, the result of chance mutations. Therefore asking why is not a meaningful question. Evolution has no goal or end result in mind.

As others have pointed out, natural explanations don't refute the existence of a creator entity. However, they eliminate the necessity of one.
Thanksfornotraping
Posts: 238
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10/18/2014 12:23:05 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
God is perfect and the universe is not, thus, God did not create the universe.
We (souls made from God) made the universe and it is an illusion.
God doesn't pay attention to illusions.
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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10/18/2014 12:23:07 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 12:12:56 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 5:46:11 AM, dee-em wrote:
At 10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work.

I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident.

I disagree. The difference between asking "how" and "why" is that "how" only refers to unintentional results and "why" only refers to intentional results. Are you arguing that anything naturally occurring occurs intentionally towards some end?

I don't think that's necessarily the case.

"Why did the weight fall?"
"Because the rope broke"
"Why did the rope break?"
"Because the salt water on the wind eroded it"
"Why did the salt water erode it?"

...And so on.

I don't think "why" necessitates intentionality.

I think that's the way you're going--but it presupposes that there IS an intentionality, which should be established first.
Assistant moderator to airmax1227. PM me with any questions or concerns!
Benshapiro
Posts: 3,954
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10/18/2014 12:29:21 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 12:23:07 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:12:56 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 5:46:11 AM, dee-em wrote:
At 10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work.

I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident.

I disagree. The difference between asking "how" and "why" is that "how" only refers to unintentional results and "why" only refers to intentional results. Are you arguing that anything naturally occurring occurs intentionally towards some end?

I don't think that's necessarily the case.

"Why did the weight fall?"
"Because the rope broke"
"Why did the rope break?"
"Because the salt water on the wind eroded it"
"Why did the salt water erode it?"

...And so on.

I don't think "why" necessitates intentionality.

I think that's the way you're going--but it presupposes that there IS an intentionality, which should be established first.

Those are common misuses of the word "why" as slang. If something has an answer to "why" it occurred, it must occur with intent. To say that things in nature have an answer as to "why" they occur IS to presuppose intentionality.
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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10/18/2014 12:33:41 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 12:29:21 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:23:07 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:12:56 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 5:46:11 AM, dee-em wrote:
At 10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work.

I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident.

I disagree. The difference between asking "how" and "why" is that "how" only refers to unintentional results and "why" only refers to intentional results. Are you arguing that anything naturally occurring occurs intentionally towards some end?

I don't think that's necessarily the case.

"Why did the weight fall?"
"Because the rope broke"
"Why did the rope break?"
"Because the salt water on the wind eroded it"
"Why did the salt water erode it?"

...And so on.

I don't think "why" necessitates intentionality.

I think that's the way you're going--but it presupposes that there IS an intentionality, which should be established first.

Those are common misuses of the word "why" as slang.

Can you defend that?

https://www.google.com...

It seems to me that those are both proper uses of the word as an adverb.

If something has an answer to "why" it occurred, it must occur with intent. To say that things in nature have an answer as to "why" they occur IS to presuppose intentionality.

In this sense, then, you'd be saying that, if there is no intentionality, then the "why" is a nonsensical question. If so, before claiming that how doesn't answer why, wouldn't you need to show that why was a sensical question (i.e., that there WAS a why?)
Assistant moderator to airmax1227. PM me with any questions or concerns!
Benshapiro
Posts: 3,954
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10/18/2014 12:42:50 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 12:33:41 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:29:21 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:23:07 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:12:56 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 5:46:11 AM, dee-em wrote:
At 10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work.

I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident.

I disagree. The difference between asking "how" and "why" is that "how" only refers to unintentional results and "why" only refers to intentional results. Are you arguing that anything naturally occurring occurs intentionally towards some end?

I don't think that's necessarily the case.

"Why did the weight fall?"
"Because the rope broke"
"Why did the rope break?"
"Because the salt water on the wind eroded it"
"Why did the salt water erode it?"

...And so on.

I don't think "why" necessitates intentionality.

I think that's the way you're going--but it presupposes that there IS an intentionality, which should be established first.

Those are common misuses of the word "why" as slang.

Can you defend that?

https://www.google.com...

It seems to me that those are both proper uses of the word as an adverb.

If something has an answer to "why" it occurred, it must occur with intent. To say that things in nature have an answer as to "why" they occur IS to presuppose intentionality.

In this sense, then, you'd be saying that, if there is no intentionality, then the "why" is a nonsensical question. If so, before claiming that how doesn't answer why, wouldn't you need to show that why was a sensical question (i.e., that there WAS a why?)

Your source: Why:" for what reason or purpose"

Do you agree that *anything* has an "inherent reason or purpose" for existing (like the water cycle) under naturalism?

Right - if there is no intentionality behind why naturally occurring things then "why" isn't a valid question to ask in reference to why naturally occurring things occur. "Why" is a sensical question because sentient beings can do things with intent. Therefore "why" exists. The misapplication of the word is applying "why" to phenomena in nature as a reason or purpose for occurring.
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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10/18/2014 12:51:28 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 12:42:50 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:33:41 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:29:21 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:23:07 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:12:56 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 5:46:11 AM, dee-em wrote:
At 10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work.

I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident.

I disagree. The difference between asking "how" and "why" is that "how" only refers to unintentional results and "why" only refers to intentional results. Are you arguing that anything naturally occurring occurs intentionally towards some end?

I don't think that's necessarily the case.

"Why did the weight fall?"
"Because the rope broke"
"Why did the rope break?"
"Because the salt water on the wind eroded it"
"Why did the salt water erode it?"

...And so on.

I don't think "why" necessitates intentionality.

I think that's the way you're going--but it presupposes that there IS an intentionality, which should be established first.

Those are common misuses of the word "why" as slang.

Can you defend that?

https://www.google.com...

It seems to me that those are both proper uses of the word as an adverb.

If something has an answer to "why" it occurred, it must occur with intent. To say that things in nature have an answer as to "why" they occur IS to presuppose intentionality.

In this sense, then, you'd be saying that, if there is no intentionality, then the "why" is a nonsensical question. If so, before claiming that how doesn't answer why, wouldn't you need to show that why was a sensical question (i.e., that there WAS a why?)

Your source: Why:" for what reason or purpose"

Reason =/= purpose. Purpose does seem to indicate intentionality. Reason does not.

"What's the reason you got a C?"

"My score was 70"
or
"I didn't study"

Both are "reasons" for the C.

Do you agree that *anything* has an "inherent reason or purpose" for existing (like the water cycle) under naturalism?

I would say the reasons for the water cycle's existence are the natural effects of the properties of water, given the properties of temperature on Earth.

I don't see any reason to think there's a purpose, however.

Right - if there is no intentionality behind why naturally occurring things then "why" isn't a valid question to ask in reference to why naturally occurring things occur. "Why" is a sensical question because sentient beings can do things with intent. Therefore "why" exists. The misapplication of the word is applying "why" to phenomena in nature as a reason or purpose for occurring.

So you're saying that understanding the how doesn't answer the why, but that the why is nonsensical anyway?
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Benshapiro
Posts: 3,954
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10/18/2014 1:04:47 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 12:51:28 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:42:50 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:33:41 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:29:21 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:23:07 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 12:12:56 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 5:46:11 AM, dee-em wrote:
At 10/17/2014 1:29:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

I agree whole heartedly. People seem to think that by understanding *how* natural phenomena works that this somehow simultaneously explains *why* they work.

I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident.

I disagree. The difference between asking "how" and "why" is that "how" only refers to unintentional results and "why" only refers to intentional results. Are you arguing that anything naturally occurring occurs intentionally towards some end?

I don't think that's necessarily the case.

"Why did the weight fall?"
"Because the rope broke"
"Why did the rope break?"
"Because the salt water on the wind eroded it"
"Why did the salt water erode it?"

...And so on.

I don't think "why" necessitates intentionality.

I think that's the way you're going--but it presupposes that there IS an intentionality, which should be established first.

Those are common misuses of the word "why" as slang.

Can you defend that?

https://www.google.com...

It seems to me that those are both proper uses of the word as an adverb.

If something has an answer to "why" it occurred, it must occur with intent. To say that things in nature have an answer as to "why" they occur IS to presuppose intentionality.

In this sense, then, you'd be saying that, if there is no intentionality, then the "why" is a nonsensical question. If so, before claiming that how doesn't answer why, wouldn't you need to show that why was a sensical question (i.e., that there WAS a why?)

Your source: Why:" for what reason or purpose"

Reason =/= purpose. Purpose does seem to indicate intentionality. Reason does not.

"What's the reason you got a C?"

"My score was 70"
or
"I didn't study"

Both are "reasons" for the C.

Those are reasons towards some end. Does natural phenomena occur with reasons towards some end?

Do you agree that *anything* has an "inherent reason or purpose" for existing (like the water cycle) under naturalism?

I would say the reasons for the water cycle's existence are the natural effects of the properties of water, given the properties of temperature on Earth.

Does anything that exists under naturalism have any inherent cause, reason, or justification for existing? To say that naturally occurring things are the inherent reasons themselves is like describing a story in the newspaper to somebody by explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper.

I don't see any reason to think there's a purpose, however.

Right - if there is no intentionality behind why naturally occurring things then "why" isn't a valid question to ask in reference to why naturally occurring things occur. "Why" is a sensical question because sentient beings can do things with intent. Therefore "why" exists. The misapplication of the word is applying "why" to phenomena in nature as a reason or purpose for occurring.

So you're saying that understanding the how doesn't answer the why, but that the why is nonsensical anyway?

Yes, the "how" doesn't answer the why. The "why" is only nonsensical if it's applied to any natural process incapable of intent.
bladerunner060
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10/18/2014 1:08:33 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 1:04:47 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

Reason =/= purpose. Purpose does seem to indicate intentionality. Reason does not.

"What's the reason you got a C?"

"My score was 70"
or
"I didn't study"

Both are "reasons" for the C.

Those are reasons towards some end. Does natural phenomena occur with reasons towards some end?

The goal is not to get a C, however, that was not "intentional". In the first case, the flat score is not intentional.

The non-studying is the aspect which addresses intentionality.

Both answer the question, technically, however one is more meaningful towards what the person is "really" asking.

Do you agree that *anything* has an "inherent reason or purpose" for existing (like the water cycle) under naturalism?

I would say the reasons for the water cycle's existence are the natural effects of the properties of water, given the properties of temperature on Earth.

Does anything that exists under naturalism have any inherent cause, reason, or justification for existing? To say that naturally occurring things are the inherent reasons themselves is like describing a story in the newspaper to somebody by explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper.

No, it isn't. It would be like explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper in answer to "Why does the newspaper say XYZ?", though.

I don't see any reason to think there's a purpose, however.

Right - if there is no intentionality behind why naturally occurring things then "why" isn't a valid question to ask in reference to why naturally occurring things occur. "Why" is a sensical question because sentient beings can do things with intent. Therefore "why" exists. The misapplication of the word is applying "why" to phenomena in nature as a reason or purpose for occurring.

So you're saying that understanding the how doesn't answer the why, but that the why is nonsensical anyway?

Yes, the "how" doesn't answer the why. The "why" is only nonsensical if it's applied to any natural process incapable of intent.

Then I'm somewhat confused. Are you alleging that the water cycle is not a natural process incapable of intent? Or...what, exactly?
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Benshapiro
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10/18/2014 1:17:54 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 1:08:33 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 1:04:47 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

Reason =/= purpose. Purpose does seem to indicate intentionality. Reason does not.

"What's the reason you got a C?"

"My score was 70"
or
"I didn't study"

Both are "reasons" for the C.

Those are reasons towards some end. Does natural phenomena occur with reasons towards some end?

The goal is not to get a C, however, that was not "intentional". In the first case, the flat score is not intentional.

The non-studying is the aspect which addresses intentionality.

No, the test itself is the end. Studying is the means towards that end. Does nature have any means towards some end?

Both answer the question, technically, however one is more meaningful towards what the person is "really" asking.

Do you agree that *anything* has an "inherent reason or purpose" for existing (like the water cycle) under naturalism?

I would say the reasons for the water cycle's existence are the natural effects of the properties of water, given the properties of temperature on Earth.

Does anything that exists under naturalism have any inherent cause, reason, or justification for existing? To say that naturally occurring things are the inherent reasons themselves is like describing a story in the newspaper to somebody by explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper.

No, it isn't. It would be like explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper in answer to "Why does the newspaper say XYZ?", though.

Well you said it better than I could have. If explaining the process of how ink bonds to newspaper doesn't answer 'why' the newspaper says what it does, then how the process of how the water cycle works doesn't explain why it occurs.

I don't see any reason to think there's a purpose, however.

Right - if there is no intentionality behind why naturally occurring things then "why" isn't a valid question to ask in reference to why naturally occurring things occur. "Why" is a sensical question because sentient beings can do things with intent. Therefore "why" exists. The misapplication of the word is applying "why" to phenomena in nature as a reason or purpose for occurring.

So you're saying that understanding the how doesn't answer the why, but that the why is nonsensical anyway?

Yes, the "how" doesn't answer the why. The "why" is only nonsensical if it's applied to any natural process incapable of intent.

Then I'm somewhat confused. Are you alleging that the water cycle is not a natural process incapable of intent? Or...what, exactly?

The answer to any "why" question requires intent. If no intent exists, a why question isn't applicable.

Let me ask you this: Does everything happen for a reason?
bladerunner060
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10/18/2014 1:26:34 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 1:17:54 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 1:08:33 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 1:04:47 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

Reason =/= purpose. Purpose does seem to indicate intentionality. Reason does not.

"What's the reason you got a C?"

"My score was 70"
or
"I didn't study"

Both are "reasons" for the C.

Those are reasons towards some end. Does natural phenomena occur with reasons towards some end?

The goal is not to get a C, however, that was not "intentional". In the first case, the flat score is not intentional.

The non-studying is the aspect which addresses intentionality.

No, the test itself is the end. Studying is the means towards that end. Does nature have any means towards some end?

I have seen no evidence indicating that any intention was behind it, thus, I would answer with a qualified "no", in that obviously I am not certain, as I do now know all things.

Both answer the question, technically, however one is more meaningful towards what the person is "really" asking.

Do you agree that *anything* has an "inherent reason or purpose" for existing (like the water cycle) under naturalism?

I would say the reasons for the water cycle's existence are the natural effects of the properties of water, given the properties of temperature on Earth.

Does anything that exists under naturalism have any inherent cause, reason, or justification for existing? To say that naturally occurring things are the inherent reasons themselves is like describing a story in the newspaper to somebody by explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper.

No, it isn't. It would be like explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper in answer to "Why does the newspaper say XYZ?", though.

Well you said it better than I could have. If explaining the process of how ink bonds to newspaper doesn't answer 'why' the newspaper says what it does, then how the process of how the water cycle works doesn't explain why it occurs.

It's a connotative difference. It so happens that the intent is clear from context in the newspaper example. But there are others that I could construct that would be purposefully unclear, and thus, so would the intent of the question.

My point is that your assertion regarding what "why" meant wasn't entirely correct, nor is it "incorrect" to use "why" in the way you were calling "slang". Connotatively, we are often asking what the intent is--but that's not a requirement and doing so about natural processes would be presupposing intent in the first place.

I don't see any reason to think there's a purpose, however.

Right - if there is no intentionality behind why naturally occurring things then "why" isn't a valid question to ask in reference to why naturally occurring things occur. "Why" is a sensical question because sentient beings can do things with intent. Therefore "why" exists. The misapplication of the word is applying "why" to phenomena in nature as a reason or purpose for occurring.

So you're saying that understanding the how doesn't answer the why, but that the why is nonsensical anyway?

Yes, the "how" doesn't answer the why. The "why" is only nonsensical if it's applied to any natural process incapable of intent.

Then I'm somewhat confused. Are you alleging that the water cycle is not a natural process incapable of intent? Or...what, exactly?

The answer to any "why" question requires intent. If no intent exists, a why question isn't applicable.

I still disagree with you on that. However, in the sense you mean it (which is always more important than semantical quibbles anyway), I would say that even asking why before establishing that a why exists is, in the way you mean it, an almost dishonest question, because it begs the question in assuming there's a reason in the first place in order to make the question sensical.

Let me ask you this: Does everything happen for a reason?

In the sense you mean it (that is, requiring intention), I do not believe so, though I could in theory be wrong.
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ThinkFirst
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10/18/2014 1:33:43 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/17/2014 12:24:03 PM, EtrnlVw wrote:
Why would we need to reject the existence of God simply because we can explain physical phenomenon by studying it and learning the mechanics of how they work?

If a physical structure exists then there is a physical explanation as to how and why it exists, what it's mechanics are and so forth this is obvious but how does that eliminate a Creator who arranges these things? It's not like God is creating a mirage or some ghostly image, these things are physical and require a physical arrangement.

If God created something physical then we would be able to examine it and explain it with a natural explanation, but this has nothing to do with believing in the existence of God IMO.

As an agnostic, there is absolutely nothing about finding a physical explanation that precludes the existence of a deity. There is also nothing that provides any evidence of a deity. The fact is that the original REASON for having a deity was to explain things that humans could not understand. As our knowledge grew, we came to understand that a deity is simply not necessary. We are fine without a deity. No, this still does not eliminate the deity's existence, but there is no reason to believe that one exists, until such time as we find REASON to believe in one.

Quite frankly, I'm fine with or without a deity, in this universe. The problem arises because humans seem to find it impossible to have a deity without someone, somewhere, attempting to speak on behalf of a deity, and issue mandates, edicts, rules and requirements, using that deity as justification and authority to tell others how they must live/behave. I say keep the deity, if you wish. Get rid of the religions, and we'll all be better off. My questions to you are:
Can we have a deity without the Hell, Heaven, angels, stories, requirements, restrictions (unnecessary), prayers, etc.?
Why does every deity have to come with a set of behavioral baggage that is so limiting to the individual human, and produces nothing of positive benefit?
Why make all the claims that stem from deities that are so diminishing, when applied to societies and cultures?
Why is there always the presence of "clergy" and "prophets" demanding obedience to such a ridiculous set of rules, simply based on the existence of a deity?
As far as deity is concerned: Why can there only be one?
Why does believing come with such fear?
Why are all deities such oppressive and violent monsters?
Why are the people that espouse belief in these deities always the people that most violate the "morality" associated with belief in these deities?
"Never attribute to villainy that which can be adequately explained by stupidity"
-----
"Men rarely if ever dream up a god superior to themselves. Most gods have the manners and morals of a spoiled child. "

-- Robert A Heinlein
Benshapiro
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10/18/2014 1:41:29 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 1:26:34 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 1:17:54 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
At 10/18/2014 1:08:33 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 1:04:47 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

Reason =/= purpose. Purpose does seem to indicate intentionality. Reason does not.

"What's the reason you got a C?"

"My score was 70"
or
"I didn't study"

Both are "reasons" for the C.

Those are reasons towards some end. Does natural phenomena occur with reasons towards some end?

The goal is not to get a C, however, that was not "intentional". In the first case, the flat score is not intentional.

The non-studying is the aspect which addresses intentionality.

No, the test itself is the end. Studying is the means towards that end. Does nature have any means towards some end?

I have seen no evidence indicating that any intention was behind it, thus, I would answer with a qualified "no", in that obviously I am not certain, as I do now know all things.

So if naturally occurring things don't occur as a means towards some end, we can't answer why anything naturally occurring occurs. Correct?

Both answer the question, technically, however one is more meaningful towards what the person is "really" asking.

Do you agree that *anything* has an "inherent reason or purpose" for existing (like the water cycle) under naturalism?

I would say the reasons for the water cycle's existence are the natural effects of the properties of water, given the properties of temperature on Earth.

Does anything that exists under naturalism have any inherent cause, reason, or justification for existing? To say that naturally occurring things are the inherent reasons themselves is like describing a story in the newspaper to somebody by explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper.

No, it isn't. It would be like explaining the process of how ink bonded to the newspaper in answer to "Why does the newspaper say XYZ?", though.

Well you said it better than I could have. If explaining the process of how ink bonds to newspaper doesn't answer 'why' the newspaper says what it does, then how the process of how the water cycle works doesn't explain why it occurs.

It's a connotative difference. It so happens that the intent is clear from context in the newspaper example. But there are others that I could construct that would be purposefully unclear, and thus, so would the intent of the question.


My point is that your assertion regarding what "why" meant wasn't entirely correct, nor is it "incorrect" to use "why" in the way you were calling "slang". Connotatively, we are often asking what the intent is--but that's not a requirement and doing so about natural processes would be presupposing intent in the first place.

In context to the original post that I responded to, deem said that why the water cycle occurs is self-evident. That is pre-supposing intent and would mean that the water cycle occurs as a means towards some end. You've agreed that natural processes occur without means towards ends, correct?

I don't see any reason to think there's a purpose, however.

Right - if there is no intentionality behind why naturally occurring things then "why" isn't a valid question to ask in reference to why naturally occurring things occur. "Why" is a sensical question because sentient beings can do things with intent. Therefore "why" exists. The misapplication of the word is applying "why" to phenomena in nature as a reason or purpose for occurring.

So you're saying that understanding the how doesn't answer the why, but that the why is nonsensical anyway?

Yes, the "how" doesn't answer the why. The "why" is only nonsensical if it's applied to any natural process incapable of intent.

Then I'm somewhat confused. Are you alleging that the water cycle is not a natural process incapable of intent? Or...what, exactly?

The answer to any "why" question requires intent. If no intent exists, a why question isn't applicable.

I still disagree with you on that. However, in the sense you mean it (which is always more important than semantical quibbles anyway), I would say that even asking why before establishing that a why exists is, in the way you mean it, an almost dishonest question, because it begs the question in assuming there's a reason in the first place in order to make the question sensical.

Do you believe that people can't do things for any reason or purpose?

Let me ask you this: Does everything happen for a reason?

In the sense you mean it (that is, requiring intention), I do not believe so, though I could in theory be wrong.
bladerunner060
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10/18/2014 1:57:41 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 1:41:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
I have seen no evidence indicating that any intention was behind it, thus, I would answer with a qualified "no", in that obviously I am not certain, as I do now know all things.

So if naturally occurring things don't occur as a means towards some end, we can't answer why anything naturally occurring occurs. Correct?

In the way you're using the term, correct.

It's a connotative difference. It so happens that the intent is clear from context in the newspaper example. But there are others that I could construct that would be purposefully unclear, and thus, so would the intent of the question.

My point is that your assertion regarding what "why" meant wasn't entirely correct, nor is it "incorrect" to use "why" in the way you were calling "slang". Connotatively, we are often asking what the intent is--but that's not a requirement and doing so about natural processes would be presupposing intent in the first place.

In context to the original post that I responded to, deem said that why the water cycle occurs is self-evident. That is pre-supposing intent and would mean that the water cycle occurs as a means towards some end. You've agreed that natural processes occur without means towards ends, correct?

Not in the slightest, nor would I think that de-em would agree that the "why" would presuppose intentionality--but we'd have to ask de-em that.

I still disagree with you on that. However, in the sense you mean it (which is always more important than semantical quibbles anyway), I would say that even asking why before establishing that a why exists is, in the way you mean it, an almost dishonest question, because it begs the question in assuming there's a reason in the first place in order to make the question sensical.

Do you believe that people can't do things for any reason or purpose?

I'm neither sure of the gist, nor the purpose of the question.

If you're asking whether I believe ANYTHING has a "why" in the sense you mean it: Of course, that's trivially the case, and human actions are generally an example of this.

If you're asking whether I think humans can do something for no purpose at all--that is, for no "why", then we go down a bit of a semantical rabbitthole, in that they still people essentially (with narrow exceptions) always control their actions, yet their reason itself might be arbitrary or random and thus "purposeless".
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Benshapiro
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10/18/2014 2:11:38 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 1:57:41 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/18/2014 1:41:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:
I have seen no evidence indicating that any intention was behind it, thus, I would answer with a qualified "no", in that obviously I am not certain, as I do now know all things.

So if naturally occurring things don't occur as a means towards some end, we can't answer why anything naturally occurring occurs. Correct?

In the way you're using the term, correct.


It's a connotative difference. It so happens that the intent is clear from context in the newspaper example. But there are others that I could construct that would be purposefully unclear, and thus, so would the intent of the question.

My point is that your assertion regarding what "why" meant wasn't entirely correct, nor is it "incorrect" to use "why" in the way you were calling "slang". Connotatively, we are often asking what the intent is--but that's not a requirement and doing so about natural processes would be presupposing intent in the first place.

In context to the original post that I responded to, deem said that why the water cycle occurs is self-evident. That is pre-supposing intent and would mean that the water cycle occurs as a means towards some end. You've agreed that natural processes occur without means towards ends, correct?

Not in the slightest, nor would I think that de-em would agree that the "why" would presuppose intentionality--but we'd have to ask de-em that.

A 'reason' of 'why' still requires intent because a reason is still a means toward an end. If natural phenomena occurs without any means towards ends, we cannot ask 'why' or 'for what reason' that they occur. It'd be like asking "Why, or for what reason did this specific, random outcome occur?" The answer is that the specific, random outcome occurred for no reason because that specific action occurred as means with no end.


I still disagree with you on that. However, in the sense you mean it (which is always more important than semantical quibbles anyway), I would say that even asking why before establishing that a why exists is, in the way you mean it, an almost dishonest question, because it begs the question in assuming there's a reason in the first place in order to make the question sensical.

Do you believe that people can't do things for any reason or purpose?

I'm neither sure of the gist, nor the purpose of the question.

If you're asking whether I believe ANYTHING has a "why" in the sense you mean it: Of course, that's trivially the case, and human actions are generally an example of this.

If you're asking whether I think humans can do something for no purpose at all--that is, for no "why", then we go down a bit of a semantical rabbitthole, in that they still people essentially (with narrow exceptions) always control their actions, yet their reason itself might be arbitrary or random and thus "purposeless".

The purpose of the question was to differentiate that human beings can act with intent but nature cannot. If nature cannot act with intent, it has no means towards any end. If nature acts without any means towards any end, no reason for any naturally occurring phenomena exists. If no reason for any naturally occurring phenomena exists, then asking 'why' this phenomena occurs is not an applicable question.
dee-em
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10/19/2014 3:40:14 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 1:41:29 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

In context to the original post that I responded to, deem said that why the water cycle occurs is self-evident. That is pre-supposing intent and would mean that the water cycle occurs as a means towards some end. You've agreed that natural processes occur without means towards ends, correct?

I meant the use of why as "for what reason", of course. You keep equivocating on the two uses even though the difference has been pointed out to you.
dee-em
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10/19/2014 4:41:58 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/18/2014 2:11:38 PM, Benshapiro wrote:

A 'reason' of 'why' still requires intent because a reason is still a means toward an end.

No, it isn't. You can keep insisting but it's simply not true.

If natural phenomena occurs without any means towards ends, we cannot ask 'why' or 'for what reason' that they occur.

Yes, we can. Why does the water cycle exist? Answer: It exists because of the physical laws of the universe. It would occur on any planet with oceans, land masses and a similar temperature range to our own Earth. Where is the problem with asking why?

It'd be like asking "Why, or for what reason did this specific, random outcome occur?" The answer is that the specific, random outcome occurred for no reason because that specific action occurred as means with no end.

Yes, but not all physical phenomena are random outcomes. The water cycle is inevitable given the right conditions. Solar fusion is inevitable given a sufficient mass of concentrated hydrogen gas.

The purpose of the question was to differentiate that human beings can act with intent but nature cannot. If nature cannot act with intent, it has no means towards any end. If nature acts without any means towards any end, no reason for any naturally occurring phenomena exists.

You are just plain wrong. Reasons for many physical phenomena can be given. See my example above.

If no reason for any naturally occurring phenomena exists, then asking 'why' this phenomena occurs is not an applicable question.

Agreed. But my original statement was this:

"I beg to differ. If you know how something works (eg. the water cycle or solar fusion) then you do know why it works. This should be self-evident."

I was talking about physical phenomena which we know the workings of, not random outcomes of nature. Do you now agree that there is validity to what I said?