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  •  Well first and foremost it is less likely (8+ / 0-)

    Than what we have here by definition, because we know what we have here exists therefore it has a likelihood of one.

    Also , unless you can actualy explain and show your work then pease refrain from using quantum physics to support something it most likely does not support at all. Ditto with chaos theory.  Just tossing around science terms does not support and argument, either for or against.

    The revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

    by AoT on Thu Dec 27, 2012 at 10:05:41 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  You're telling me quantum entanglement isn't (8+ / 0-)

      strange? Relativity? Yes it is, dude. It's fucking WEIRD.  Your assumption that math and logic is REAL and everything else is UNICORNS (which really is your assumption) is completely closed-minded.

      'show your work'?  Who the hell do you think you are?  What do you want-- a fucking term paper?

      •  No, it isn't a term paper. (9+ / 0-)

        If it were a term paper, it would get an F.

        To begin with, you are assuming here that "weird" = "must have been designed by a creator." I don't see how that follows. The more complex the creation, the harder to explain the existence of the creator.

        If you make assumptions that are that weird, then of course people will want to know how you came to them. In detail.

        "They smash your face in, and say you were always ugly." (Solzhenitsyn)

        by sagesource on Thu Dec 27, 2012 at 11:08:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  what are you talking about? (6+ / 0-)

          Are you responding to someone else?

          Who said 'must have been designed by a creator'?

          If you're going to fail term papers, gotta read 'em!

          The point is that science and reason may not be as universal as some people here insist.  We inhabit 1 1 zilliionth of this universe, and know about even less of it.  Kind of arrogant for us to claim that our methods of inquiry are the end-all-be-all (but that is EXACTLY what we do).

          •  Just by way of explanation: (9+ / 0-)

            The reason science proponents get so passionate is because we know about a historical era called The Middle Ages, in which science was an unknown thing and magic was the primary belief system. People suffered and died for centuries under that system.

            Then we made it into the Enlightenment and developed science. Science has saved millions and made our lives easier with things like the germ theory of disease and electricity and refrigeration.

            Now we watch as not just fundamentalist religious fanatics, but also many on the progressive side start to reject science in favor of magic and fantasy yet again.

            Should the anti-science folks gain the upper hand, I expect the world will experience similar results as in the Middle Ages. (Although we probably won't get that far, because the science deniers will allow climate change to kill us first.)

            Carl Sagan wrote a book about it called "The Demon-Haunted World."

            Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

            by Fonsia on Thu Dec 27, 2012 at 11:52:10 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Carl Sagan also wrote a book in which he (0+ / 0-)

              claimed that ancient aliens had brought civilization to the earth.  You don't really know what you're talking about.

              The book was Intelligent Life in the Universe by Schklovsky and Sagan (1969).

              No doubt you'll deny it.

              •  Right, sure (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                emelyn, AoT, Fonsia, Smoh

                http://en.wikipedia.org/...

                In their 1966 book Intelligent Life in the Universe[19] astrophysicists I.S. Shklovski and Carl Sagan devote a chapter[20] to arguments that scientists and historians should seriously consider the possibility that extraterrestrial contact occurred during recorded history. However, Shklovski and Sagan stressed that these ideas were speculative and unproven.

                Shklovski and Sagan argued that sub-lightspeed interstellar travel by extraterrestrial life was a certainty when considering technologies that were established or feasible in the late '60s;[21] that repeated instances of extraterrestrial visitation to Earth were plausible;[22] and that pre-scientific narratives can offer a potentially reliable means of describing contact with outsiders.[23] Additionally, Shklovski and Sagan cited tales of Oannes, a fishlike being attributed with teaching agriculture, mathematics, and the arts to early Sumerians, as deserving closer scrutiny as a possible instance of paleocontact due to its consistency and detail.[24]

                In his 1979 book Broca's Brain, Sagan[25] suggested that he and Shklovski might have inspired the wave of '70s ancient astronaut books, expressing disapproval of "von Däniken and other uncritical writers" who seemingly built on these ideas not as guarded speculations but as "valid evidence of extraterrestrial contact." Sagan argued that while many legends, artifacts, and purported out-of-place artifacts were cited in support of ancient astronaut theories, "very few require more than passing mention" and could be easily explained with more conventional theories. Sagan also reiterated his earlier conclusion that extraterrestrial visits to Earth were possible but unproven, and perhaps improbable.

                There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

                by tytalus on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 08:08:24 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  quite right (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              AaronInSanDiego, Fonsia, Smoh, Magenta

              I´d add that as a scientist I see no problem with humans having magical thinking - its one of our properties, and it would be just as much denial of reality to pretend we didnt have it. Belief in heavens or gods is the same sublimed, but it can coexist in people with science and reason, they are both faculties of ours. We don´t get to kill off our animalic side just because we´ve recognized it as such, and we should not either, as it would render us inhuman.

              After all, nothing in science says we shouldnt make people suffer and torture others like they did in the middle ages. Nothing in science says we should not destroy this planet that has evolved us. So, for me I don´t want to get rid entirely of magical or rleigious thinking.

              •  it's true that science doesn't make (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                AoT, cotterperson, marsanges, 84thProblem

                those kinds of value-based prescriptions. But depending on what you mean by magical thinking, I don't think that is necessary either. I think their can be other sources of the desire to protect the planet, and I don't think we would be driven to commit violence simply due to the lack of magical our religious thinking. Of course, religious thinking has also been used to justify the very torture you mention. And while collectively it is one of our properties, I don't think that means every individual necessarily has that property, and it may not be a fundamental aspect of our nature.

                "I have more than two prablems" - The Coach Z

                by AaronInSanDiego on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 08:37:56 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  Fonsia--you might want to read a bit more (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              cotterperson, worldlotus

              about the  Middle Ages.

              Anyway, science has killed millions too.  It's not good or evil--it's just a set of disciplines.

              The problem with these posts--yours and some of the more vehement atheists in the thread, is that they draw a strict dichotomy between science and belief which simply does not exist.  One can be of sound rational mind and still believe things.  Belief DOES NOT preclude reason--that's what so many of you, for some reason I cannot fathom, do not get.

              Militant believers--those who reject reason--those are the believers who you should take up the mantle of reason against.  The Santorums/Bachmanns/Robersons of the world (I'll bet a lot of them don't actually believe what they pretend to believe, either).  Not those who are reasonable but open to the possibillity that our subjectively developed systems of logic, math, science and reason  may not account for all reality.

              •  Nowhere will you ever read that I am an athiest (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Smoh, vcmvo2

                Certainly not a militant one. Those folks have a reputation for being quite nasty. I don't want to be associated with them.

                I merely say that I don't know, and I don't think anyone else can positively know about the existence of any god.

                I actually agree with much of your argument. Religions and their scriptures are valuable for what they tell us about ethics and morality. Science does not address those topics, although scientists themselves constantly worry about the ethics and morality of their research. I read the Bible and sometimes other scriptures. Plenty of wisdom about how to live life in those.

                If you read one of my other comments on this thread you'll see that I have no problem with folks believing fantasy. I do worry what eventually will happen with their lives if they reject reality consistently.

                My point is that the science deniers, those who reject climate change and vaccinations, for example, really do have the capacity to wipe out our advances. I doubt anyone would enjoy the world they want to give us.

                I highly recommend Sagan's "Demon-Haunted World." Really, you need to read that book, if only to familiarize yourself with the arguments from the science side of this debate.

                (Snark follows here, as I do realize that you are not one of the militant science deniers:

                If you want to go back and live in the Middle Ages--a particularly favorite topic of mine, by the way--be my guest. You don't have to use any of the modern things we've developed through science. You won't be able to replicate the rampant diseases of the time, however, such as leprosy, plague, and smallpox, because we've managed to decrease the threat of those with science or to wipe them out entirely, so the experience won't be the same. Be sure that you allow the presence of fleas and other insects in your home, especially in the straw on your floors, in order to replicate the experience more authentically. I assume that you would wash more regularly than most folks did then--although they washed more often than is commonly believed today. Great music too, although rarely heard, without radios.)

                Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

                by Fonsia on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 09:54:51 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I am totally an atheist. Am I nasty? (5+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  CBrachyrhynchos, Fonsia, tytalus, pot, Mathazar

                  Cats are better than therapy, and I'm a therapist.

                  by Smoh on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 10:01:18 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                •  no argument re: actual science deniers. (0+ / 0-)

                  But a lot of the...let's call them fundamentalist rationalists  (my term militant atheists wasn't directed at you--but several posters) don't seem to be able to distinguish between open-mindedness and insanity, to be honest with you.  I have a real problem with that mentality from those posters...

                •  Comments like this (0+ / 0-)
                  Certainly not a militant one. Those folks have a reputation for being quite nasty. I don't want to be associated with them.
                  Comments like this don't really help much when I engage in interfaith community.
                  •  See my post just above with the video (0+ / 0-)

                    Phil Plait was addressing a real issue.

                    Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

                    by Fonsia on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 01:15:03 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  It's really interesting to me... (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      AoT

                      ... that apparently the way to start up a conversation about atheism isn't to talk about our morality, beauty, praxis, wonder, curiosity, or our presence in many religious communities. It's to talk about "dicks" and "assholes."

                      And I'm sorry, unless you're my lover or a doctor, that's not a conversation I'm all that interested in sharing. It's not a conversation that's remotely applicable atheism as I live or experience it, and frankly, I'm getting a bit tired of seeing the good buried under a snowstorm of bad.

                      •  Me too. Phil Plait too, apparently. (0+ / 0-)

                        I actually pretty much agree with you, but--sorry--I've continually run into atheists who just insist on calling all religious people idiots and treating them as such.

                        That attitude does not advance the dialogue, and I do not want to be associated with that attitude. Just my own preference.

                        Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

                        by Fonsia on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 02:50:48 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  And as an atheist I live in a country (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          84thProblem

                          where a majority think that I deserve to go to hell and be tortured forever because I don't believe in god.  Literally forever, regardless of what I actually do.

                          And as one of the more belligerent atheists in this thread I would note that I never called religious people idiots, I addressed beliefs.  I only call people idiots based on their actions.

                          The revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

                          by AoT on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 02:58:09 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I never ran into you. (0+ / 0-)

                            Glad people are only idiots based on their actions.

                            You are supporting my point.

                            Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

                            by Fonsia on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 03:12:20 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  'a majority think I deserve to go to hell'... (0+ / 0-)

                            wait a minute.  This is an extremely narrow view based on a subset of wacky religious nuts.

                            I mean--central to Judaism is the idea that we're supposedly 'God's chosen people' but most of us don't actually subscribe to the idea.

                            I know hundreds of Catholics--and tons more Christians--I don't know of ANY who believe that people are actually going to hell.  Or that hell is even real, beyond a metaphor.

                          •  No, a majority of the country believes (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            corvo

                            in a literal Christian hell, and that's a hell that I as an atheist go to.

                            I know hundreds of Catholics--and tons more Christians--I don't know of ANY who believe that people are actually going to hell.  Or that hell is even real, beyond a metaphor.
                            I honestly don't understand how so many people can call themselves Catholic when they clearly don't believe in Catholicism.  Sigh, it's absurd.  First, it's frustrating as hell that "being Catholic" actually denotes nothing more than saying "I'm catholic" and not actually believing in anything that the church espouses.  This constant goal post moving is what is so stupid about these arguments over faith.  People claim to have faith, but never in anything specific.  I think it's mostly that they just don't want to be wrong.

                            The revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

                            by AoT on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 03:46:28 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  same way I call myself Jewish but I don't keep (0+ / 0-)

                            kosher or wear a kippah.  I don't really believe in the God of the Old Testament either.  But I'm no less Jewish.  Despite what some fundamentalist rabbi in Jerusalem might think.

                            And despite what polls say--believing in a Christian hell and BELIEVING in a Christian hell are really very different.  People who TRULY believed in a Christian hell would do anything in their power to get the 'hell' away from it--and get their friends away from it.  And railing against gays certainly isn't the best way out.

                            Polls about religion are very, very flawed because they ask black-and-white questions about very grey belief systems.

                        •  I call ... (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          corvo

                          ... associating members of a group with a stereotype prejudice.

                          And I have every right to claim the word "atheist" as a Unitarian Universalist because we were among the group (mostly ministers) that wrote the first Humanist Manifesto.

                          •  OK, I give up. (0+ / 0-)

                            Y'all have succeeded in bullying me out of my terrible prejudice against people with whom I mostly agree.

                            Glad nobody's overly aggressive on this thread.

                            Fire away. You can have the last word.

                            Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

                            by Fonsia on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 03:13:49 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  It's not bullying (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            corvo

                            It's simply the statement that I refuse to be "associated" with anything other than the values and activism of my atheist community. (Who are rarely dicks about anything, except perhaps the temperature of the water for tea.)

                          •  May I recommend that you watch that (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            bevenro

                            Phil Plait video I posted above. He, as an outspoken atheist, makes my point far better than I can.

                            It's quite a famous video. Really, you actually would enjoy it.

                            It's ironic, isn't it, that I joined this thread on the side of science, and got blasted by the pro-science crowd. Seems I touched a nerve, but it's a raw nerve that stems from a major debate within the pro-science community.

                            It's quite an important debate. If we want to promote science and fight the fantasy crowd, who outnumber us by a massive amount, just how ought we to go about it?

                            Something everyone on our side should consider.

                            Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

                            by Fonsia on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 11:17:50 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I've seen it (0+ / 0-)

                            ... but I'm not willing to entertain "don't be a dick" as the most important message for the atheist community when:

                            1) the overwhelming majority of atheists are not dicks, and
                            2) non-atheists treat us like dicks anyway.

                            Seems I touched a nerve, but it's a raw nerve that stems from a major debate within the pro-science community.

                            Yes, if you write that you don't want to be associated with us wonderful and moral people with a sense of awe and good relationships with our neighbors because we're all dicks, then that's bound to touch a nerve.

                            If you want to lecture me on my relationships as part of a multi-faith community, well, the doors to the meeting house are open every Sunday morning.

                          •  And the reason why I'm angry (0+ / 0-)

                            is that I don't feel that I should have to explain myself, my relationships, and my community here after a solid month of being demonized in the press.  

                          •  Sigh. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            bevenro

                            I had an excellent comeback to your post (reflect a bit to see if you're supporting your own argument or mine), but the best thing to do here is to just let it go.

                            Have a good day.

                            Enjoy the San Diego Zoo's panda cam! Now with new baby panda! And support Bat World Sanctuary

                            by Fonsia on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 10:09:30 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  When I see... (0+ / 0-)

                            When I see a group that's a target of prejudice, I blame the people peddling the prejudice, not the group in question.

      •  Again, unless you actually understand and can (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        84thProblem, corvo

        explain what quantum entanglement actually is then you don't get to go around dropping buzz words.  You're using actual science to pull the wool over people's eyes and it's crap, absolute crap.

        The revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

        by AoT on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 08:42:35 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The key thing (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Smoh, Scott Wooledge, 84thProblem

          Is tht physics, no matter how weird, must rest on data and evidentiary support.    Wild interpretations of mental phenomenon isn't strong evidence.  This book is no more evidence of heaven than a good peyote trip is

          Hay hombres que luchan un dia, y son buenos Hay otros que luchan un año, y son mejores Hay quienes luchan muchos años, y son muy buenos. Pero hay los que luchan toda la vida. Esos son los imprescendibles.

          by Mindful Nature on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 10:04:06 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  but my point wasn't the diarists' point. (0+ / 0-)

            you're conflating them...

            I'm not arguing for 'heaven'.  I'm just saying that I don't find some of these beliefs (e.g. a sentient universe) to be all that more far-fetched than what we already have...

            •  Ah ok (0+ / 0-)

              Yes, reality is so odd that oddness alone should disqualify an idea from consideration.  

              Hay hombres que luchan un dia, y son buenos Hay otros que luchan un año, y son mejores Hay quienes luchan muchos años, y son muy buenos. Pero hay los que luchan toda la vida. Esos son los imprescendibles.

              by Mindful Nature on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 11:49:58 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I think you meant to say 'shouldn't' if I'm (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                worldlotus

                reading you correctly--

                but yes....all of existence is wacky.  So if we were to find out there really were an afterlife, I think we'd just say 'hey, wow, cool!' accept it as a previously undiscovered phenomenon, and move on.

        •  that point wasn't about 'wool' (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          worldlotus

          it was simply presenting some examples of well known physical concepts that defy intuition.  It wasn't an argument for or against the supernatural--just that the supernatural isn't, in my mind, really any stranger than the natural.  

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