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Observer columnist says Popeís visit reduced Dawkins to Ďa rambling and wild-eyed madmaní
Protect the Pope ^ | 1/2/2010

Posted on 01/02/2011 3:43:53 PM PST by markomalley

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To: RobbyS
You mean if you haven’t seen it, it didn’t happen?

When did I say that, or anything which you lead you to think that I believe such a thing?

Lots of things fit into that category, including most of the things in the history books. Inlcuding what happens inside of a given atom, which are unseeable.

The properties of the inside of an atom can be deduced from various scientific instruments. One need not use visible light. As for history, it depends on the history in question. If the consensus of historians is that the Roman Empire existed 2,000 years ago, that's perfectly plausible, wouldn't you agree? On the other hand, if Erich von Däniken says the aliens built the pyramids...not so much.

Or put it anothing way, anything that challenges your world view is to be dismissed—out of hand.

So I'm too close-minded, is that it? Ok...let's see just how open-minded you are! I'll give you a short list of 10 items (aren't pop quizzes fun?). Please tell me if you deny the existence of any of them. Not as in, "Oh, I suppose it might be true...there's no way to know, really", but as in "Oh, give me a break...how can any rational adult give credence to that?"

1) The Egyptian pyramids were built by aliens.
2) Witches can actually spells...that work.
3) Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker really existed in a galaxy far, far away.
4) The continent of Atlantis really existed.
5) Telekinesis is real.
6) Crystal healing works.
7) Geocentrism.
8) Perpetual motion can work.
9) Dowsing works.
10) Ghosts are real.

Surely you're not going to dismiss any of these out of hand?

On a side note, when these sorts of things come up I'm always reminded of a scene in Ghostbusters:

Janine Melnitz: Do you believe in UFOs, astral projections, mental telepathy, ESP, clairvoyance, spirit photography, telekinetic movement, full trance mediums, the Loch Ness monster and the theory of Atlantis?
Winston Zeddemore: Ah, if there's a steady paycheck in it, I'll believe anything you say.

41 posted on 05/19/2011 5:36:12 PM PDT by Abin Sur
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To: Abin Sur

Let;s stick to epistomology. how anyone knows anything. Probably there is no such thing as bilocation, just as probably there are no space aliens. But men are famous for entertaining ‘hypotheses,” which are part of our survival gear. And what is the source of all these speculation, these imaginings of alternatives to what we “know.:? What is the mind? A ghost in the machine, or a product of the workings of the machine, and how is is to that it does have the ability to extrapolate far beyond what we see, hear, taste and smell? What is the nature of mathematics?Is it part of the machine, ot is to a product of the mind? And how is it that it seems to corrolate with our common perception of the world? And what is this world beyond the things we bump into right now? And, of course, how is it that we are the only animals who think, who have this power of abstraction and detachment, so that even the savages have a “sense” of the immaterial?


42 posted on 05/19/2011 8:45:56 PM PDT by RobbyS (Pray with the suffering souls.)
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To: RobbyS
Let;s stick to epistomology. how anyone knows anything. Probably there is no such thing as bilocation, just as probably there are no space aliens.

I wouldn't go that far...the universe is big, and it's becoming increasingly evident that planets are common. I would guess that sentient life is prevalent throughout the universe, although I have no way to assign a probability. But that's doesn't mean they've ever come here. The distances are just too vast.

But men are famous for entertaining ‘hypotheses,” which are part of our survival gear. And what is the source of all these speculation, these imaginings of alternatives to what we “know.:? What is the mind? A ghost in the machine, or a product of the workings of the machine, and how is is to that it does have the ability to extrapolate far beyond what we see, hear, taste and smell? What is the nature of mathematics?Is it part of the machine, ot is to a product of the mind? And how is it that it seems to corrolate with our common perception of the world? And what is this world beyond the things we bump into right now?

I've never been that intrigued by questions of this nature...if it's not falsifiable, what's the point? One good engineer is worth a hundred philosophers!

And, of course, how is it that we are the only animals who think, who have this power of abstraction and detachment, so that even the savages have a “sense” of the immaterial?

That one's easy. Homo Sapiens in the most intelligent animal to ever evolve on this planet. Previous to our existence, animals simply didn't have the cognitive ability to think in this manner.

43 posted on 05/20/2011 7:10:29 AM PDT by Abin Sur
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To: Abin Sur

I think it pretty clear that we have only an inkling of what the whole universe is like. Relatively speaking, not that much more than what Ptolemy did. The pure positivism that Popper delineated gives us not much to deal with. As for falsifrication, the problem with evolution theory is that beginning with Darwin himself, it has been adopted as a kind of “theory of Everything.” It certainly can’t handle the basic question: how does intelligence look at itself?


44 posted on 05/21/2011 12:09:42 AM PDT by RobbyS (Pray with the suffering souls.)
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To: RobbyS
I think it pretty clear that we have only an inkling of what the whole universe is like. Relatively speaking, not that much more than what Ptolemy did.

Compare our current knowledge of the nature of (for example) the Solar System to that of Ptolemy's. Are you seriously arguing that we only know a bit more than he did about this subject?

As for falsifrication, the problem with evolution theory is that beginning with Darwin himself, it has been adopted as a kind of “theory of Everything.” It certainly can’t handle the basic question: how does intelligence look at itself?

Since that question has nothing to do with the TOE, why should it?

45 posted on 05/21/2011 5:54:55 AM PDT by Abin Sur
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To: Abin Sur
One has to distinguish between Darwin's theory--which was that of a trained naturalist based on his detailed observations and "natural selection"that was immediately applied to every aspect of human life. One does not realize how faddish evolution became immediately until one looks at the literature of the day.If one could google in the time, the number of hits under "evolution" would have increased enormously between 1860 and 1870. Social Darwinism, of course, owed almost nothing to Darwin, but people thought it did so it had great influence for twenty years or so. People seem to think that being told that they were nothing more than "enlightened' brutes was liberating. Huxley himself was nonplused by the evident corruption of morals owing to the diminution of the Victorian morality, which was owed so much to evangelical and the Liberal Christian (called Gnostics BTW) beliefs among the middle classes. Freud invented the term "superego" to refer to this God substitute. One cannot blame Darwin or even the Darwinist for the likes of Hitler and Lenin, but they were the products of the Zeitgeist in which a half-understood Darwinism was common currency. Ironically, the best guides are Nietzsche and Kierkegaard each with his own startlingly clear insights.
46 posted on 05/21/2011 10:06:47 AM PDT by RobbyS (Pray with the suffering souls.)
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To: RobbyS

Those are very good points you just brought up; lots of people have been misapplying (and misunderstanding) the TOE from the moment it was published.


47 posted on 05/22/2011 7:41:03 AM PDT by Abin Sur
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