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To: Boogieman
"Methodological naturalism is the label for the required assumption of philosophical naturalism when working with the scientific method. Methodological naturalists limit their scientific research to the study of natural causes, because any attempts to define causal relationships with the supernatural are never fruitful, and result in the creation of scientific “dead ends” and God of the gaps-type hypotheses. To avoid these traps scientists assume that all causes are empirical and naturalistic; which means they can be measured, quantified and studied methodically.

The scientific method requires no assumptions. The writer of this screed confuses conclusions with prior assumptions.

"...essentially atheistic - claim that only natural causes exist.”

These claims stand w/o evidence. The scientific method requires evidence.

"To quote Highlander, there can be only one."

What is this man's evidence? Why isn't muhumed's character the one?

Re: “One can not define themselves.”

" More anthropomorphism.

Not. A definition is a blueprint for form and function, or essence of something. It's a logical conclusion that one can not draw up a blueprint for their form and function prior to their existence. No "human qualities" were attributed, or considered to draw hte conclusion.

Re: No. It’s a legitimate question to ask about any person someone else claims exists, but never shows up to introduce themselves.

"No, it’s not. You are falsely assuming that God, if He did exist, would have some personality or psychological traits that we observe in humans. That’s classic anthropomorphism.

I assumed nothing. The fact that any intelligent sentient, rational being has a personality is a conclusion based on the fact that they must be sentient rational machines. Sentience requires sensing of the surroundings, one's own machinery and to one's own thoughts. That is the nature of feelings and emotion. Without the sentience, their can be no interaction with the environment and no self awareness. ie. no personality. If there is no capacity for rational processing/thought, then likewise there can be no sentience. Sentient rational machines are persons, which must display the chacteristics of personality, because of the very functionality that is contained in their essence.

If some being chooses to always stay hidden, or simply appears to, then either the being doesn't exist, or there is some reason that he chooses to hide. His choice to hide and his reasons are quantifications of his outward personality. Consider the historical Baal for instance, he's either an inept cowardly nacissist, or he doesn't exist.

45 posted on 06/18/2012 2:20:37 PM PDT by spunkets
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To: spunkets

“The scientific method requires no assumptions. The writer of this screed confuses conclusions with prior assumptions.”

Every method requires assumptions. Every human intellectual endeavor is based on assumptions, and refusing to acknowledge them is not helpful to understanding the proper scope or application of those endeavors. Also, methodological naturalism cannot be a conclusion of the scientific method, since it would not be demonstrable through the scientific method, simply because you cannot prove a negative. Go ahead and try, I’ll be waiting.

“These claims stand w/o evidence. The scientific method requires evidence.”

Which is irrelevant, since those claims were about philosophical naturalism, which has does not stand or fall based on the scientific method. Moreover, the statement is from a summary description of a well known philosophy, not an attempt to prove or defend that philosophy, so expecting evidence or support for the statement is silly. If you want to examine the arguments in favor of philosophical naturalism, go out and read a book on the subject.

“What is this man’s evidence? Why isn’t muhumed’s character the one?”

I didn’t say his wasn’t. I intentionally did not answer that question in your previous post, because this isn’t a theological discussion, so I see no point in confusing the issue by descending into that. It would not be fruitful, but only serve to distract from the crux of the conversation, which is about your attempt to deny that methodological naturalism is a required assumption of the scientific method, and therefore the scientific method limits itself only to examining natural phenomena. I thought that, by quoting Highlander, you might take the hint that I was making a silly rejoinder to your equally silly attempts to drive the discussion into an only tangentially related direction.

“Not. A definition is a blueprint for form and function, or essence of something. It’s a logical conclusion that one can not draw up a blueprint for their form and function prior to their existence.”

Your very definition of “definition” is anthropomorphic as well as being self-serving. My original use of the word had nothing to do with a blueprint, but rather a description. A blueprint implies that the definition exists before the thing it describes, whereas it is much more common for the thing to exist before it is described, and of course, almost every definition in existence is created by men, to express our necessarily limited understanding of the things we are defining. Therefore, any human definition of a deity can only hope to be an incomplete and probably insufficient description. This is why I say that God defines himself, because only He would be able to do so in a truly accurate manner. We simply are not equipped with the tools to make more than a partial description of such a phenomenon.

“No “human qualities” were attributed, or considered to draw hte conclusion.”

By assuming that a God would conform to the limitations of humans, yes, you are ascribing human qualities to a deity, hence anthropomorphism.

“I assumed nothing. The fact that any intelligent sentient, rational being has a personality is a conclusion based on the fact that they must be sentient rational machines.”

How can you follow the one statement with the other? The second sentence is full of assumptions (all intelligent, sentient, rational beings will conform to your previous experience, sentient beings all have personalities, their personalities will be similar to human ones, they will be machines, etc). The fact that you don’t see the anthropomorphism fairly dripping from the statement demonstrates you are either very uncritical of your own thinking, or you simply don’t understand what anthropomorphic assumptions are. The rest of your “logic” following that statement is just more bad assumptions heaped on the previous ones, amounting to no useful information.


46 posted on 06/18/2012 9:07:36 PM PDT by Boogieman
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