Evidence

Is there a god? What is the meaning of life?
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Piecemaker
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Re: Evidence

Post by Piecemaker »

Born_again wrote:
Bsuds wrote:
Born_again wrote: I'm trying to rationalise discrepancies between my thought processes and that of others.


That's easy, you have thought processes while some others don't!


But what if my thought processes flawed when viewed on a social scale with zeitgeist factored in? I would rather assess my thought processes objectively first, then proceed to the subjective 'fine tuning', or refinement. We are social creatures after all, so elements such as empathy and compassion are vitally important to the way in which I think. I am not looking for affirmation or concordance, but a better way to understand why we think the way we think. Why do we allow double standards within our own thought processing? Is it healthy, ... beneficial, ... acceptable?


I think it is healthy, beneficial and acceptable to have double standards without our thought processing. Last thing needed is Borg mentality. New ideas and insights are developed from the back and forth of our thoughts. I have been somewhat destroyed by analytical thought and then out of the rubble and more thought constructed something better. Didn't happen easily or quickly, but I'd go through it again for an equally positve outcome.
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fluffy
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Re: Evidence

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Born_again wrote:Love is undoubtedly evidenced; physically. It carries properties of cause and effect(both physical As far as I can determine to date, no-one has ever witnessed God & Co., and thus their propensity to believe that God exists was not based on assessment of physical evidences presented. The evidence is not scarce, I believe it is simply not there. I agree that a subject may have evaluated a range of circumstantial, anecdotal, or coincidental evidences to sway their judgement and perceptions, but that assessment still falls short of actual evidence.


Agreed for the most part, yet I still believe that there is a higher power of some sort, and I feel my life is better for that belief, even without empirical evidence laid out before me. At present it's working just fine for me.

Born_again wrote:For me to declare "you will not go to heaven because you don't believe in God" is a statement of fact, but a statement of fact based entirely without evidence for the conviction. Nothing. For heaven to exist there must be a God to preside over it, yet I see no evidence of God & Co. Why would I offer such a statement if I could not back it with evidence? At best it is emotionally hurtful, and at least it is downright dishonest. My only explanation would be that I was exploring the darker side of my nature for some sort of personal emotional, ambitious, authoritative, controlling or financially-driven gain. There would be no physical gain to be had. In fact, I cannot see any evidence of true mutual benefit whatsoever. None.


Yeah, the whole heaven thing is right in there with the God-as-a-conscious-entity thing. It's a bit of a stretch for me too.
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Re: Evidence

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Piecemaker wrote:B_A--Are you sure that love isn't a human construct, as you say God is?


With near certainty I would assert that love is not a human construct. However, the way in which we exploit, manipulate or interpret facets of the condition may certainly be man-made constructs. Take marriage for example(which could reasonably be argued is a religious imposition, and less vigorously for purposes beyond natural selection); is it necessary to maintain love between a matched pair?

By default love is a condition that afflicts us all, religiosity is not. Be mindful of the fact that evidence of elements of physiological love are antecedent to full-blown love, and one has very limited ways to ward it off once the signs are detected. Whereas, the physiological evidences of the various 'joys' of Belief are retroactive, i.e. one must first consciously submit to the belief in something that is non-evidenced for it to have 'beneficial' effects. For example, I can easily mimic the convolutions and distortions of someone flailing around on the floor and speaking in tongues to their God & Co., but I simply will not achieve the same level of physiological gratification as the person of god because I have not consciously submitted to the fanciful whims of my imagination. In fact, the experience would likely have a net negative effect on me.
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steven lloyd
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Re: Evidence

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Piecemaker wrote: I think it is healthy, beneficial and acceptable to have double standards without our thought processing. Last thing needed is Borg mentality. New ideas and insights are developed from the back and forth of our thoughts. I have been somewhat destroyed by analytical thought and then out of the rubble and more thought constructed something better.

Very interesting observation. I think I would have to agree with that.
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Re: Evidence

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Piecemaker wrote:
I think it is healthy, beneficial and acceptable to have double standards without our thought processing. Last thing needed is Borg mentality.


I'm not sure that I follow your meaning, Piecemaker. Are you saying that one should reserve a sort of 'fluff' (no offence intended towards fluffy) zone within their minds that could be used for the harmless white-lie category, such as telling your child to put their fallen milk teeth under the pillow for the tooth fairy? A fantasy zone? A creative zone? A hope zone?
If so, I fail to see how the brain could operate differently and still maintain it's function of discerning fact from fiction. I mean, that's what the power of reason is all about, isn't it?

I'm probably way off the mark in interpreting what you have said, but if I'm in the 'ball park', then I fully agree with you, with one caveat; that no one part of that fluff zone should be off limits to audit if it's 'spending' gets out of control to the detriment of others.

Thank god for evidence!
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Re: Evidence

Post by fluffy »

I can see your point BA, but in a situation where a particular belief system is helping an individual, is it a must to dissect that system to the point where it is no longer helpful? I'm no philosophy major, I'm sure if I put my own system under a microscope that it would be in for some substantial revision, but currently, in its present form, it is helping me deal with a lot of stuff that frees up time to deal with other, and more pressing, stuff. Perhaps somewhere down the road when the more pressing stuff is not so pressing, there will be time for a few more steps in the cosmic journey. I don't see that as "living a lie", more "it's good enough for now, let's deal with it later".
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Re: Evidence

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I think you made a very good point relating to cognition, fluffy.

fluffy wrote:I don't see that as "living a lie", more "it's good enough for now, let's deal with it later".


I see that as an alternative coping measure that is at our avail. But, like most short-term fixes, some will be adequate, but others may require constant quick-fixes to prop-up the failing original fix. I'm sorry if this sound like a harsh analogy, but I see the whole thing much like an alcoholic or heroin addict would convince themselves that one more nip/jab will do no harm. It's a slippery slope once you give your brain over to the control of man's most powerful tool/weapon.

I can relate to a direct family experience after the death/murder of my sibling. My mother found that her religion was giving her great doubt as to whether she would ever see her son in heaven due to his sins on earth(he was no angel). So, what does she do? Yup, a good old switcheroo to spiritualism mid-way through her grieving. The sad thing is now we have to put up with the constant barrage of insensible 'messages' and 'signs' from the spirit world, which can be relayed through objects such as rocks, trees, clouds, rivers, us, etc. etc.. Right now, I'd rather have my old bible thumping mother back! We are 3 years on from the death, but the grieving goes on for her because the spiritualists and mediums are fleecing my mother for $200 per session, weekly!!

I'll give you 3 guesses as to which fashion my hands would like to become acquainted with the necks of the charlatans that are preying on my mother! Thank god there is a large pond separating us.
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Re: Evidence

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All evidence gathered by an individual is shaped and filtered by that person's perceptions, in many cases to the extent that people will actually see what they believe. There are many interesting studies on perceptions that show people will completely miss out on glaringly obvious events if they are not attuned to the presence of said events. (eg. Someone walking past in a gorilla suit while being shown a card trick) People are generally not receptive to evidence that does not fit their predefined perceptual filters. People operate in parallel perceptual realities. Most people's realities greatly overlap especially because people tend to congregate among others who share their own perceptual filters, thereby reinforcing their particular experience of reality. If new evidence does not fit the perceptual filters it is, as the name suggests filtered out. Many people are open to non empirical evidence whereas many others do not (or cannot?) perceive anything non empirical as constituting evidence.
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Re: Evidence

Post by Born_again »

I have nothing further to add or query about what you have said, tumult. What I would be interested in hearing from you would be your opinion on:

me wrote:Why do we allow double standards within our own thought processing? Is it healthy, ... beneficial, ... acceptable?
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Re: Evidence

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Born_again wrote:I have nothing further to add or query about what you have said, tumult. What I would be interested in hearing from you would be your opinion on:

me wrote:Why do we allow double standards within our own thought processing? Is it healthy, ... beneficial, ... acceptable?


I think I have to more or less echo Piecemaker on this one. Breakthroughs, innnovations, insights and creativity are usually the result of applying a different thought process to something. Applying the same standard to every thought results in stagnation. Certainly there are many things that it is beneficial to apply the same thought process to (eg. math) but sometimes individuals can leap past the "standard" thought process right to the solution by applying a different thought process.
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steven lloyd
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Re: Evidence

Post by steven lloyd »

Born_again wrote:
Piecemaker wrote: I think it is healthy, beneficial and acceptable to have double standards without our thought processing. Last thing needed is Borg mentality.

I'm not sure that I follow your meaning, Piecemaker. Are you saying that one should reserve a sort of 'fluff' (no offence intended towards fluffy) zone within their minds that could be used for the harmless white-lie category, such as telling your child to put their fallen milk teeth under the pillow for the tooth fairy? A fantasy zone? A creative zone? A hope zone? If so, I fail to see how the brain could operate differently and still maintain it's function of discerning fact from fiction. I mean, that's what the power of reason is all about, isn't it?

I can see and appreciate what you’re saying here BA and largely agree. In agreeing with Piecemakers point I hadn’t taken it as far as you did and was really just agreeing with the idea of thinking outside of the box through the use of brainstorming, free-flowing and abstract thought. I agree that whatever ideas we do come up with still need to be tested with reason but limiting ourselves to strict and rigid lines of thinking can be unproductive. I agree with Tumult ...

Tumult wrote: I think I have to more or less echo Piecemaker on this one. Breakthroughs, innnovations, insights and creativity are usually the result of applying a different thought process to something. Applying the same standard to every thought results in stagnation. Certainly there are many things that it is beneficial to apply the same thought process to (eg. math) but sometimes individuals can leap past the "standard" thought process right to the solution by applying a different thought process.
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Re: Evidence

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BA wrote
"So, for sanity's sake(mine, that is), can anyone challenge my position that until evidence is produced, my lack of belief in god, gods or God is 'irrational' and/or 'abnormal' ?"

How can requiring evidence be a function of an 'irrational' mind? Surely requiring solid evidence on which to base a conclusion is indeed rational.

Of course holding an opinion contrary to that of most people is 'abnormal' imo you are rational, at least in this regard, and taking you at your word. However some of us like the fact that you are demonstrably abnormal.


Piecemaker wrote:Like there appear to be universal emotional responses, there appears to be a universal sense of a greater power than ourselves.

I agree that some have a sense of spirituality, however I find no evidence for that sense of spirituality being related to a "greater power than ourselves"
Spirituality is an inner sense of ones relationship to ones environment, this may be so powerful that it is recognized by others, but a universal sense of anything is not evidence.

BTW I should like a reasonable explanation of an observation I made many years ago, that matter seems (to me) to have an innate drive to organize itself into ever more complex groupings.
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Re: Evidence

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Speaking of evidence, I have seen evidence of John Right's existence, but it fails out on proof; therefore, he does not exist.

Evidence...
asdf1.JPG


But no proof...
asdf2.JPG
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steven lloyd
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Re: Evidence

Post by steven lloyd »

Wow! Good work Glacier. I was having my doubts when I couldn't find him in my conscience.
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Piecemaker
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Re: Evidence

Post by Piecemaker »

Nibs wrote:
Piecemaker wrote:Like there appear to be universal emotional responses, there appears to be a universal sense of a greater power than ourselves.

I agree that some have a sense of spirituality, however I find no evidence for that sense of spirituality being related to a "greater power than ourselves"
Spirituality is an inner sense of ones relationship to ones environment, this may be so powerful that it is recognized by others, but a universal sense of anything is not evidence.

BTW I should like a reasonable explanation of an observation I made many years ago, that matter seems (to me) to have an innate drive to organize itself into ever more complex groupings.


I like the idea that, "Spirituality is an inner sense of one's relationship to one's environment," However I still think/feel (without evidence of such) that there is a somewhat universal sense that our place or connection to our environment is a result of something greater than oneself. I used the phrase "higher power", but it could be the source, Mother Nature, our grandmothers and grandfathers. Perhaps it's even a result of cellular memory and the wisdom of our ancestors.

As to why matter seems to have an innate drive to organize itself into ever more complex groupings, maybe it's as simple as evolutionary relationships. Everything is indeed driven to relate or connect with something. The more connected, the more evolved? Haven't thought about that before, will have to ponder it a bit.
It's possible to do all the right things and still get a bad result.

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