Re: The Root of all Evil/Trobule With Atheism
Mike, there are an infinite amount of things which may or may not exist from without our universe. We, as finite beings living within a finite universe, are incapable of perceiving every thing all of them and we both agree that most of them probably do not exist, so we have to have some process that separates the more probable from the less probable. For best practices, that process includes the presentation of evidence; evidence for one hypothesis will be weighed against the evidence for another, lack of evidence for a hypothesis will result in eventual rejection and so on. And before you start, this applies to all areas of inquiry worth their salt--not just science--because it isn't inquiry unless there is a process which can produce justifiably unique ideas.
Let me put this another way, if you were to program a machine which processed the validity of ideas based on hard evidence, it would reject your "flat earth" submission for obvious reasons. There are a thousand ways to prove that the earth is round. However, if you were to program it based on your criteria for belief in your god, it would accept (basically) anything. Yours is not a process which can produce justifiably unique ideas because every idea, from pink unicorns to intelligent designers, because it requires no evidence (or even a substitute for evidence). Even if you were to program it with what can be "logically inferred" it would accept a lot more than it would reject. (If there can be no ideas which are more true or more applicable than another than it follows that all ideas are true.)
You've used the word "blind" to describe my process but that description is best suited for yours, since it is you who is appealing to our lack of sensation to make your case of a god which we can never (in every sense of the word) see, and I don't just mean by you and me now, but by no other being given the entire lifespan of the universe, given any possible instrument. Yet, "blind" is the best attack you could come up with for a philosophy which demands tangible or demonstrable evidence before belief?
You've also thrown around the word "dogma" but again, this is a better characterization of your outfit because adherents of dogmatism can never change the principles for which their dogmatism apposes. Now, I could name some things which would cause me to believe in your god, but you could never do that for your god because it is a perpetual Z. You god will always be the cause, if not the cause of the cause, if not the cause of the cause of the cause. There is absolutely nothing which anybody can posit or demonstrate which could break this Buttons and Mindy-esque "why" spell, hence, dogmatism.
This is why my position isn't a matter of semantics as you say above. I am, in fact, so leaving the door open to the possibility that your god does exist (quite literally the polar opposite of dogmatism). Alls I'm saying is that there is reason to believe that it does, hence my calling your god unreasonable.
Finally, the invisible pink unicorn is meant to be taken as an analogy, not as a replacement. In other words, it represents any old thing which transcends our capacity to know it, not necessarily arbitrary substitute for the creator of the universe. A "rose by any other name" it is not; roses are red and violets are blue. It is satirical because it ridicules your concept by taking your process of thinking and produces a logical extreme (you may be familiar with a show called South Park) to expose your process for the non-deductive non-sense (in both senses) it really is. You say that exists but we are incapable of perceiving it, I say that the invisible pink unicorn is incapable of being perceived too, does it mean that it isn't. Oh, but wait, your god is "logically inferred!" Yeah, right. So was the god which created Earth (and a few dots in the sky) and all life on the planet; so was the god which actively punished and rewarded us for our deeds. The only difference between your god now and those gods then is that our universe got bigger. Now, I'm not saying that this is necessarily a bad thing, but you have to admit that as much as you call my scientific line of thinking "narrow" (you know, because the grandeur of the natural world is narrow if you don't accept the infinite amount of alternative worlds which my or may not exist) the limits of your god are actually dictated by it. All that needed to happen for your god to be pushed past the big bang was for Darwinism to tell it couldn't be the intelligent designer it once was. And guess what, if your perpetual Z gets moved again, it will be because science--a self-checking process which produces falsible evidence--will, in every sense, move it for you--just as it has moved the "soul" (as it was originally concieved) from our bodies, just as it has made our place in the universe much, much smaller.
Now, answer me this: if a product of the supernatural world created the natural world, then why is it that the natural world is one dictating the limits of the supernatural?
Last edited by Nicato; 03-03-2007 at 06:26 PM.