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Best argument for why I might be wrong

Graincruncher
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11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.
Skeptical1
Posts: 656
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11/1/2016 11:48:01 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

Well, my two cents doesn't answer what you're asking for, so perhaps it won't be welcome. But that's never stopped me before ;-)

I wish I was more right brained, but I'm not. I find it hard to deal with nebulous concepts, or to speak or think in the abstract. My immediate question is, how is it useful to me to say that God exists, but that its attributes are indescribable?

Perhaps I'm missing the point. If so, it's not deliberate.
Benshapiro
Posts: 3,952
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11/2/2016 12:28:21 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

Can you explain in a few sentences why you believe this to be the best argument for God's existence?
Graincruncher
Posts: 2,799
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11/2/2016 8:11:47 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/1/2016 11:48:01 PM, Skeptical1 wrote:
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

Well, my two cents doesn't answer what you're asking for, so perhaps it won't be welcome. But that's never stopped me before ;-)

I wish I was more right brained, but I'm not. I find it hard to deal with nebulous concepts, or to speak or think in the abstract. My immediate question is, how is it useful to me to say that God exists, but that its attributes are indescribable?

Perhaps I'm missing the point. If so, it's not deliberate.

It may not be useful, to be honest. It is simply a door to such a faith position being rational. It could be of purely aesthetic value, casting our world narrative under a particular kind of light.

The point is more that it allows us to rationally consider the transcendent, without committing to the irrational baggage that can often come with. I think sometimes more analytical approaches run the risk of being closed to the idea of there being 'more'. However, I also think it fundamentally true that we can't meaningfully discuss the 'more' because it is by definition beyond our comprehension.
Graincruncher
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11/2/2016 8:13:52 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
Urgh. I forgot what this forum software does to character formatting. Apologies about the abundance of quote marks in place of other punctuation. FFS.
Graincruncher
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11/2/2016 8:22:28 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 12:28:21 AM, Benshapiro wrote:
Can you explain in a few sentences why you believe this to be the best argument for God's existence?

I mean, I thought I just had, but okay.

It provides a consistent, reasoned approach towards a conclusion of transcendental 'truth' or reality. In doing this, it accords with the processes of critical thinking and presents some degree of justification for its conclusions. It does all this without involving wider claims that themselves are inherently problematic and do not meet these same standards.
keithprosser
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11/2/2016 9:30:42 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
IMO, one of the more surprising thing about Godel's discovery is how little effect it has had on mathematics. Mathematicians continue to make conjectures and prove theorems much as they did before Godel. There are a few known examples of undecideable statements, but there was never a crisis or discontinuity in the way maths was or is done.

I think it very unlikely that the existence of god is something that would fall foul of Godel's incompleteness theorems. I see the existence of god as being an empirical issue, ie contingent on the way the universe happens to be rather than a matter of logical necessity. That makes it the subject of scientific enquiry rather than doing abstract logic in an armchair.

As such we can only approach certainty regarding the existent of god 'asymptotically' (as is the case with all scientific knowledge). As we learn more we gain more and more confidence in the truth of a scientific proposition, but we never reach absolute certainty (we can reach certainty that a proposition is wrong of course!).

Science will never be complete - there will alway be some gap for a god to live in. But that isn't the same thing as godel incompleteness as I am sure people will recognise.

As a thorough going materialist atheist I don't give serious consideration of theistic or deistic models. But were I not so pig-headed about materialism I would worry about a few things.

One is the complexity of living things. I honestly think any materialist who doesn't get the occasional qualm when they contemplate the fantastic machinery within even the simplest of cells probably needs to learn more about it.

Two is the 'fine tuning' of the universe. That seems to require a lot more work.

Finally - consciouness. At least with life and fine tuning we have something to go with - ie evolution and the anthropic principle - but we have nothing at all with consciousness. To an extent we are looking for answers to the puzzles of life and fine tuning, but with consciouness we are not sure what the puzzle is, or even if there is a puzzle.

I don't mind being accused of dogmatism or even of operating on faith when it comes to my materialism. Guilty as charged. But I bet I'm right when I say - there is no god.
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 9:36:36 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

same old same old, prove God exists through science...

prove the big bang is true without science and prove it by evidence I would accept, by the way, I chose the veracity of that evidence...

your topic is just "show boating" "grandstanding"....
Graincruncher
Posts: 2,799
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11/2/2016 10:47:18 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 9:36:36 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

same old same old, prove God exists through science...

prove the big bang is true without science and prove it by evidence I would accept, by the way, I chose the veracity of that evidence...

your topic is just "show boating" "grandstanding"....

Only I was pretty clear that's NOT what I'm arguing. I even explicitly separated the argument from empiricist to be extra clear on that. I take issue with people trying to prove god with science and on several occasiond mention that it needs to be faith-based belief.

So presumably you just didn't understand any of my post except the bit where I stated I'm an atheist, at which point you lost your sh*t.
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 10:47:18 AM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 9:36:36 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

same old same old, prove God exists through science...

prove the big bang is true without science and prove it by evidence I would accept, by the way, I chose the veracity of that evidence...

your topic is just "show boating" "grandstanding"....

Only I was pretty clear that's NOT what I'm arguing. I even explicitly separated the argument from empiricist to be extra clear on that. I take issue with people trying to prove god with science and on several occasiond mention that it needs to be faith-based belief.

So presumably you just didn't understand any of my post except the bit where I stated I'm an atheist, at which point you lost your sh*t.

No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...
Skeptical1
Posts: 656
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11/2/2016 11:49:24 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:47:18 AM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 9:36:36 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

same old same old, prove God exists through science...

prove the big bang is true without science and prove it by evidence I would accept, by the way, I chose the veracity of that evidence...

your topic is just "show boating" "grandstanding"....

Only I was pretty clear that's NOT what I'm arguing. I even explicitly separated the argument from empiricist to be extra clear on that. I take issue with people trying to prove god with science and on several occasiond mention that it needs to be faith-based belief.

So presumably you just didn't understand any of my post except the bit where I stated I'm an atheist, at which point you lost your sh*t.

No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

Milk comes in cartons now - we've evolved.

Next?
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 11:55:27 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 11:49:24 AM, Skeptical1 wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:47:18 AM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 9:36:36 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

same old same old, prove God exists through science...

prove the big bang is true without science and prove it by evidence I would accept, by the way, I chose the veracity of that evidence...

your topic is just "show boating" "grandstanding"....

Only I was pretty clear that's NOT what I'm arguing. I even explicitly separated the argument from empiricist to be extra clear on that. I take issue with people trying to prove god with science and on several occasiond mention that it needs to be faith-based belief.

So presumably you just didn't understand any of my post except the bit where I stated I'm an atheist, at which point you lost your sh*t.

No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

Milk comes in cartons now - we've evolved.

Next?

i said milk bottle tops lol...

and that does not prove evolution, the bottles did nothing to change themselves, one did not become another, it could prove intelligent design though...
Quadrunner
Posts: 1,078
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11/2/2016 1:31:00 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 11:55:27 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 11:49:24 AM, Skeptical1 wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:47:18 AM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 9:36:36 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:


*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

same old same old, prove God exists through science...

prove the big bang is true without science and prove it by evidence I would accept, by the way, I chose the veracity of that evidence...

your topic is just "show boating" "grandstanding"....

Only I was pretty clear that's NOT what I'm arguing. I even explicitly separated the argument from empiricist to be extra clear on that. I take issue with people trying to prove god with science and on several occasiond mention that it needs to be faith-based belief.

So presumably you just didn't understand any of my post except the bit where I stated I'm an atheist, at which point you lost your sh*t.

No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

Milk comes in cartons now - we've evolved.

Next?

i said milk bottle tops lol...

and that does not prove evolution, the bottles did nothing to change themselves, one did not become another, it could prove intelligent design though...

I'm interested in this thread. I would appreciate it if you end the spamming (bickering, or whatever it is) to make it easier to read constructive additions as they come along.
Wisdom is found where the wise seek it.
Graincruncher
Posts: 2,799
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11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 2:54:49 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 1:31:00 PM, Quadrunner wrote:
At 11/2/2016 11:55:27 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 11:49:24 AM, Skeptical1 wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:47:18 AM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 9:36:36 AM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:


*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

same old same old, prove God exists through science...

prove the big bang is true without science and prove it by evidence I would accept, by the way, I chose the veracity of that evidence...

your topic is just "show boating" "grandstanding"....

Only I was pretty clear that's NOT what I'm arguing. I even explicitly separated the argument from empiricist to be extra clear on that. I take issue with people trying to prove god with science and on several occasiond mention that it needs to be faith-based belief.

So presumably you just didn't understand any of my post except the bit where I stated I'm an atheist, at which point you lost your sh*t.

No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

Milk comes in cartons now - we've evolved.

Next?

i said milk bottle tops lol...

and that does not prove evolution, the bottles did nothing to change themselves, one did not become another, it could prove intelligent design though...

I'm interested in this thread. I would appreciate it if you end the spamming (bickering, or whatever it is) to make it easier to read constructive additions as they come along.

well you carry on, but I am not spamming, i am making a point about the thread and it's pointless question...
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...
Graincruncher
Posts: 2,799
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11/2/2016 3:22:25 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...

The point is I've presented what I consider to be a rational argument for belief in god. An argument that is emphatically NOT anything to do with science. One that relies purely on abstract concepts.

To my knowledge, in several years here I've never seen the above discussed in any thread, in any form. It's not a quest for knowledge, it's my opinions on an argument I wanted to draw attention to precisely BECAUSE it is never brought up aroumd here.

You quite clearly haven't properly read or understood my post. My commiserations to your parents.
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 3:27:59 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 3:22:25 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...

The point is I've presented what I consider to be a rational argument for belief in god. An argument that is emphatically NOT anything to do with science. One that relies purely on abstract concepts.

To my knowledge, in several years here I've never seen the above discussed in any thread, in any form. It's not a quest for knowledge, it's my opinions on an argument I wanted to draw attention to precisely BECAUSE it is never brought up aroumd here.

You quite clearly haven't properly read or understood my post. My commiserations to your parents.

yet I believe I have...
DanneJeRusse
Posts: 12,598
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11/2/2016 3:38:17 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 3:27:59 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:22:25 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...

The point is I've presented what I consider to be a rational argument for belief in god. An argument that is emphatically NOT anything to do with science. One that relies purely on abstract concepts.

To my knowledge, in several years here I've never seen the above discussed in any thread, in any form. It's not a quest for knowledge, it's my opinions on an argument I wanted to draw attention to precisely BECAUSE it is never brought up aroumd here.

You quite clearly haven't properly read or understood my post. My commiserations to your parents.

yet I believe I have...

Yet, you didn't. that is obvious to anyone with reading comprehension skills.
Marrying a 6 year old and waiting until she reaches puberty and maturity before having consensual sex is better than walking up to
a stranger in a bar and proceeding to have relations with no valid proof of the intent of the person. Muhammad wins. ~ Fatihah
If they don't want to be killed then they have to subdue to the Islamic laws. - Uncung
Without God, you are lower than sh!t. ~ SpiritandTruth
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 3:41:07 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 3:38:17 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:27:59 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:22:25 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...

The point is I've presented what I consider to be a rational argument for belief in god. An argument that is emphatically NOT anything to do with science. One that relies purely on abstract concepts.

To my knowledge, in several years here I've never seen the above discussed in any thread, in any form. It's not a quest for knowledge, it's my opinions on an argument I wanted to draw attention to precisely BECAUSE it is never brought up aroumd here.

You quite clearly haven't properly read or understood my post. My commiserations to your parents.

yet I believe I have...

Yet, you didn't. that is obvious to anyone with reading comprehension skills.

really, perhaps bias is another term for blindness in your case.......
DanneJeRusse
Posts: 12,598
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11/2/2016 3:49:29 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 3:41:07 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:38:17 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:27:59 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:22:25 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...

The point is I've presented what I consider to be a rational argument for belief in god. An argument that is emphatically NOT anything to do with science. One that relies purely on abstract concepts.

To my knowledge, in several years here I've never seen the above discussed in any thread, in any form. It's not a quest for knowledge, it's my opinions on an argument I wanted to draw attention to precisely BECAUSE it is never brought up aroumd here.

You quite clearly haven't properly read or understood my post. My commiserations to your parents.

yet I believe I have...

Yet, you didn't. that is obvious to anyone with reading comprehension skills.

really, perhaps bias is another term for blindness in your case.......

It's not bias to observe someone who lacks reading comprehension skills, you often don't understand what people are saying.
Marrying a 6 year old and waiting until she reaches puberty and maturity before having consensual sex is better than walking up to
a stranger in a bar and proceeding to have relations with no valid proof of the intent of the person. Muhammad wins. ~ Fatihah
If they don't want to be killed then they have to subdue to the Islamic laws. - Uncung
Without God, you are lower than sh!t. ~ SpiritandTruth
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 4:11:52 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 3:49:29 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:41:07 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:38:17 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:27:59 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:22:25 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...

The point is I've presented what I consider to be a rational argument for belief in god. An argument that is emphatically NOT anything to do with science. One that relies purely on abstract concepts.

To my knowledge, in several years here I've never seen the above discussed in any thread, in any form. It's not a quest for knowledge, it's my opinions on an argument I wanted to draw attention to precisely BECAUSE it is never brought up aroumd here.

You quite clearly haven't properly read or understood my post. My commiserations to your parents.

yet I believe I have...

Yet, you didn't. that is obvious to anyone with reading comprehension skills.

really, perhaps bias is another term for blindness in your case.......

It's not bias to observe someone who lacks reading comprehension skills, you often don't understand what people are saying.

I understand fine...
DanneJeRusse
Posts: 12,598
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11/2/2016 4:20:29 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 4:11:52 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:49:29 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:41:07 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:38:17 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:27:59 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:22:25 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...

The point is I've presented what I consider to be a rational argument for belief in god. An argument that is emphatically NOT anything to do with science. One that relies purely on abstract concepts.

To my knowledge, in several years here I've never seen the above discussed in any thread, in any form. It's not a quest for knowledge, it's my opinions on an argument I wanted to draw attention to precisely BECAUSE it is never brought up aroumd here.

You quite clearly haven't properly read or understood my post. My commiserations to your parents.

yet I believe I have...

Yet, you didn't. that is obvious to anyone with reading comprehension skills.

really, perhaps bias is another term for blindness in your case.......

It's not bias to observe someone who lacks reading comprehension skills, you often don't understand what people are saying.

I understand fine...

But, you didn't, that's the point.
Marrying a 6 year old and waiting until she reaches puberty and maturity before having consensual sex is better than walking up to
a stranger in a bar and proceeding to have relations with no valid proof of the intent of the person. Muhammad wins. ~ Fatihah
If they don't want to be killed then they have to subdue to the Islamic laws. - Uncung
Without God, you are lower than sh!t. ~ SpiritandTruth
graceofgod
Posts: 5,052
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11/2/2016 4:31:56 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 4:20:29 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 4:11:52 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:49:29 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:41:07 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:38:17 PM, DanneJeRusse wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:27:59 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 3:22:25 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:58:34 PM, graceofgod wrote:
At 11/2/2016 2:43:23 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:51:09 AM, graceofgod wrote:
No, you are demanding believers should prove, through science, that God exists, to add to that it must be proof you accept...

"show boating" "grandstanding"

now I want you to prove evolution, using milk bottle tops and margarine tubs, remember, I have to accept the proof or it doesn't count...

I strongly suggest you re-read my post because it explicitly states several times that I'm doing quite the opposite of what you claim. I don't really understand what you think you'll achieve by claiming otherwise, as the evidence of what I've said is there for all to see.

But if you've some pathological need to continue arguing black is white, please feel free to make as much of a fool of yourself as you see fit.

no your thread does not, it is quite clear you are trying to make a point and yet your point is ridiculous...

the same thread appears time and again, with a slightly different twist of course...

the only deceit in this thread as your attempt to make it look like a quest for knowledge...

The point is I've presented what I consider to be a rational argument for belief in god. An argument that is emphatically NOT anything to do with science. One that relies purely on abstract concepts.

To my knowledge, in several years here I've never seen the above discussed in any thread, in any form. It's not a quest for knowledge, it's my opinions on an argument I wanted to draw attention to precisely BECAUSE it is never brought up aroumd here.

You quite clearly haven't properly read or understood my post. My commiserations to your parents.

yet I believe I have...

Yet, you didn't. that is obvious to anyone with reading comprehension skills.

really, perhaps bias is another term for blindness in your case.......

It's not bias to observe someone who lacks reading comprehension skills, you often don't understand what people are saying.

I understand fine...

But, you didn't, that's the point.

yes I did... it was obvious what was going on...
Harikrish
Posts: 11,005
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11/2/2016 5:36:07 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/1/2016 2:01:33 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
There seems to be a real paucity of measured discussion around here at the moment. Theists and atheists alike seem to spend most of their time locked in one of two activities:

1)Attacking an ultra-fundamentalist strawman of their opponents, such as all atheists being extreme "hard" atheists or all theists thinking god is literally some sort of celestial wizard.
2)Repeating the same old arguments again and again, ignoring refutations or questions and simply restating their original assertions as if those things had never been mentioned.

Granting that there are examples of (1) and moving on from them " there"s no point in discussing things with the lunatic fringe " I"d like to go some way towards setting the record straight. Maybe even have some intelligent debate beyond the playground "Explain kidneys!" level.
So I"m going to lay out my position, followed by what I think is the best reason for disagreeing with it. Hopefully this will dispel the idea that it"s impossible to rationally hold a position without completely rejecting any possibility of it being wrong.

My Position
In perhaps shocking news, I"m an atheist. To clarify further, I do not think there a persuasive enough case to justify my assigning a "true" value to the proposition "there is a god". This is more strongly the case for specific gods, but universally the case for god propositions in general.
I do not affirm the statement "there definitely is no god of any kind", so am not what is often called a "hard" atheist. However, I don"t claim to be certain in my conclusion that there probably isn"t a god and almost certainly isn"t specific instances of commonly described gods. I self-identify as an atheist. If anyone wants to argue with me over whether I"m "really" agnostic, take it elsewhere. Not interested in irrelevant semantic wedge tactics.

I would therefore be open to arguments that were genuinely persuasive. I think it unlikely " but not impossible " that such persuasion would be in the form of scientific discovery (I doubt we"d find "God woz ere "99" etched into the fabric of space-time, for example). However, I do think it more plausible that there be other kinds of argument that could be persuasive.

Finally, I think it conceptually impossible to meaningfully describe things "beyond" our universe/reality. This is because the rules and concepts that give our language " and therefore capacity for description " meaning are rooted within our world. Therefore, outside of this context, our language ceases to be useful and is stripped of its sense. There may or may not be a great many "things" that "exist" that we cannot ever describe or make sense of because they are by definition beyond sense. We simply don"t know and in principle can"t know.

Best Counter-Argument: Waiting for Godel
Weak pun aside, this is an argument I"ve never seen coherently presented here, but which I think has a lot of merit. It relates to Godel"s Incompleteness Theorem*. In short, this states that in certain types of suitably complex system there are facts that are "true" but cannot be proved so using only other elements of that system. Or, in even shorter: just because you can"t prove it doesn"t mean it"s not true.
These elements may be proved by meta-analytic processes. What this all means (crudely) is that our language has certain limitations, including an inability to "self-represent". By moving to a "higher order" language (so from 1st order to 2nd order) we can overcome these limitations, but that new language then faces the same problem itself. And so on.

If we assume (and it is an assumption) the universe is such a system, this leaves room for there being some sort of "god concept"; present as part of the system, but unprovable/indefinable from within it. Or possibly a "higher order" account of reality that makes more complete sense of our "lower order" universe. So long as this is kept vague " i.e. none of the "god is benevolent and forgiving and also he hates the colour purple and people working weekends" " then it seems to me a rational bridge to belief. As some sort of acceptance that there is an ineffable explanation for all this which transcends the reality we"re capable of comprehending.

There are, of course, a few caveats:
-We may not live in such a system and therefore the concepts may not apply. But equally we might.
-It opens the door to "rational faith", but carries no persuasive force. That is "it is reasonable to believe"" not "therefore you should believe".
-People seem quick to assume there is only the rational position on any matter, not a selection of them. This argument would leave both belief and disbelief as equally rational conclusions.
-It emphatically does not support any specific description of god or godly attributes. It is far nearer deism than theism.
-It doesn"t enable us to suddenly talk meaningfully of likelihoods, possibilities or states of affairs prior to or outside of the universe. Our language is still limited in this fashion.
-It does still suffer from "infinite regression" as an objection. Personally I"ve never thought that much of an obstacle anyway, but for those that do, it is still very much present here.

But those aside, it is certainly the argument I find most plausible, if not to go so far as actually finding it persuasive. I would consider it a rational basis for faith, though. It is the best argument for god " and therefore for holding a position that disagrees with my own - I"ve come across, by quite some margin.

Anyone else got any examples (atheists with things that make them think "maybe?" or theists with things that make them think "maybe not?") of this sort of thing?

*It"s actually nearer Tarski"s Undefinability Theorem, but I wanted brand recognition. And puns.

I don't think anyone has a problem with the definition of God or the various metaphysical attributes He is given such as omnipresent, omnipotent, creator,master of the universe because the meaning these definitions convey are understood. They are cognitively impressed on our imagination.

How they are received can be measured by the individuals personal experience and development. For example describing the concept of the mega rich to a poor average person can only tease the persons imagination of extreme wealth to a limited degree, he cannot possible conceptualizer the true magnitude of wealth as in mega rich because he has nothing to associate it with having been deprived all his life.

Similarly, religion attempts to convey the other worldness and transcendental nature of spiritual experience and the larger consciousness beyond the physical and material world. They may not be evidenced by science but they are cognitively real to the person experiencing it.

Neuroscientists have found the brain can be induced to produce these metaphysical experiences that are the subject of non-cognitivism by stimulating certain parts of the brain. The same areas that are the seat of creative thinking in the brain. So non-cognitivism is really a diminishing of cognitive function and not just a rhetorical proposition. We are certainly not all created equal in our cognitive ability to appreciate the sublime.
Graincruncher
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11/2/2016 10:14:44 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 9:30:42 AM, keithprosser wrote:
IMO, one of the more surprising thing about Godel's discovery is how little effect it has had on mathematics. Mathematicians continue to make conjectures and prove theorems much as they did before Godel. There are a few known examples of undecideable statements, but there was never a crisis or discontinuity in the way maths was or is done.

I think that's because we then end up with a Liar's Paradox. In fact, I'm pretty sure that's been raised as a point regarding the theorem; it is a good example of itself, in so far as the logic it uses to prove itself is logic it shows is incomplete when it comes to provability. If we were to take that incompleteness itself as something that prevents us doing maths or using logic, the theorem becomes invalid and we no longer have to worry about it, so can get back to business as usual.

I think it very unlikely that the existence of god is something that would fall foul of Godel's incompleteness theorems. I see the existence of god as being an empirical issue, ie contingent on the way the universe happens to be rather than a matter of logical necessity. That makes it the subject of scientific enquiry rather than doing abstract logic in an armchair.

Here I disagree - although apparently according to some I'm somehow mistaken in thinking I disagree! - as I don't think that the existence of god is necessarily an empirical issue at all. At least, not one within our '1st order' reality. A transcendent being would by definition transcend the very tools empiricist approaches rely upon.
Graincruncher
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11/2/2016 10:19:09 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 5:36:07 PM, Harikrish wrote:
I don't think anyone has a problem with the definition of God or the various metaphysical attributes He is given such as omnipresent, omnipotent, creator,master of the universe because the meaning these definitions convey are understood. They are cognitively impressed on our imagination.

I very much disagree with this. I think that while terms are commonly bandied around, the actual semantic content of them is poorly understood at best.

However, that is beside the point. What I'm saying is that I don't think we have any reason to claim them or viable method for reliably determining whether such a claim is accurate or not.

Similarly, religion attempts to convey the other worldness and transcendental nature of spiritual experience and the larger consciousness beyond the physical and material world. They may not be evidenced by science but they are cognitively real to the person experiencing it.

Something being 'cognitively real' is a notoriously poor measure of whether a given experience is what it appears to be. That is, "what I experienced" and "how I made sense of that experience" are two very distinct concepts.
MasonicSlayer
Posts: 2,287
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11/2/2016 10:38:15 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
Paucity? I'm guessing that's your new word for the day. That's about all I learned from this post.
Graincruncher
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11/2/2016 10:51:54 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 10:38:15 PM, MasonicSlayer wrote:
Paucity? I'm guessing that's your new word for the day. That's about all I learned from this post.

Because I used it once?

I'm unsurprised you've not learned much, though. I don't mean from my post; just in general.
MasonicSlayer
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11/2/2016 11:05:15 PM
Posted: 1 month ago
At 11/2/2016 10:51:54 PM, Graincruncher wrote:
At 11/2/2016 10:38:15 PM, MasonicSlayer wrote:
Paucity? I'm guessing that's your new word for the day. That's about all I learned from this post.

Because I used it once?

I'm unsurprised you've not learned much, though. I don't mean from my post; just in general.

I never read your post if that helps you to better understand why I'm the person with the highest level of education anyone in the world can imagine to obtain. It's like I already know what you're thinking. Because youre thinking I'm only putting my foot in my mouth, and that's not far from the truth. To know what I know you have to fly high into the sky to see what I can see.