If God is real, how would you know?

Discussion in 'Religion' started by Jan Ardena, Apr 8, 2020.

  1. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    27,534
    Don't be a silly billy.
    Of course a cell has complexity as does nature in many other respects, and it also has had 13.83 billion years to obtain such complexity..
     
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  3. foghorn Registered Senior Member

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    I really don't take this site too seriously, so I may reflect that. There are some members, where I go out my way to read their long posts because ''I'' have decided their worth the effort. Your not one.
     
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  5. (Q) Encephaloid Martini Valued Senior Member

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    Some complexity, nowhere near as complex as my examples above.
     
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  7. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    That's good to know.

    So we'll score that up as another example of atheism that isn't to be taken too seriously.

    It's kind of weird how much that goes on, considering how much some atheists whine, as if none of it was ever sincere, in the first place.

    It's like this one chronic liar I know who happens to be an atheist. Every now and then he says things like, "#NotAllAtheists", when that was never the question. In the end, he seems more determined to discredit atheists and atheism, bawling about theistic moralism while acting out their complaints. To the one, sure, he is himself, and not you. To the other, he really does want to pretend he is somehow statistically representative, and thereby indict as many atheists as possible.

    And here you are volunteering yourself as reinforcement.

    And it's true, the religious zealots were wrong: It's not for a lack of God if there is no morality among atheists, but an expressed result of human priorities. It has always seemed strange, though, to respond to that faith-laden assertion about God and morality, by struggling to prove their point for them.

    So from those of us who work against the harms religious belief and behavior can cause to those of you who work to reinforce religious hatred and supremacism, no, your efforts are not appreciated. Don't expect anyone to thank you for going out of your way to make things worse.

    It's like for every religious slander against atheism, there will be an atheist at Sciforums absolutely determined to convince people it isn't slander.

    (And to think, some of these people have been at it for over a decade.)
     
  8. foghorn Registered Senior Member

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    585
    You mods decide who stays or goes, and that will have a bearing on the ''quality'' of discussion. How long you been here moaning about this kind of thing? Jump to it.
     
  9. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    19,311
    And yet you write thousands of words about it. Fascinating!
     
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  10. (Q) Encephaloid Martini Valued Senior Member

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    That sounds like something Sean Hannity would say.

    Thank you for all the hard work you're doing against the harms, wish I could actually see the results.
     
  11. Beer w/Straw Transcendental Ignorance! Valued Senior Member

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    5,862
    Think he deleted one of my posts because he didn't like it.

    If I wanted to be the center of attention I'd post more.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2020
  12. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

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    8,502
    I am thinking of a Badgerlark.
    What is a Badgerlark. Badgerlark are the only species that live in the gas clouds on Juptiter. Not much is known about Badgerlarks as the few people that have seen them, although prepared to talk about them, wish to remain anonymous. We can wonder how they survive in what would seem conditions inappropriate for life but clearly they do. We can only speculate on why they don't visit Earth more often indeed we can wonder why they visit at all. Could it be they find some element critical to their survival that is becoming more difficult to obtain on Jupiter. And why do they come in different colours and have only one, what we would call an arm, could it be that some quirk of evolution took away a second arm due to it not being used in the past much like fish that go blind in a river in a dark cave. So what do we know ..well not much other than they certainly exist and the more we study them the more we shall learn.
    Alex
     
  13. SetiAlpha6 Come Let Us Reason Together Valued Senior Member

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    Naturalism is unproven.
    Naturalism is unfalsifiable.
    Therefore...
    Naturalism is not scientific.
     
  14. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    27,534
    So is God. Difference being that much of the evolution of the universe via the BB is evident and the Darwinian evolution of life on at least one planet is fact.
    The evolution of the universe via the BB model and natural means is most certainly falsifiable. Your God is not and is a unscientific superfluous beast to boot.
     
  15. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

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    8,502
    Can anyone define a Bagerlark and cross their fingers and make it real?
    Alex
     
  16. (Q) Encephaloid Martini Valued Senior Member

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    Naturalism is philosophy just like theism. But, if you were to put one against the other as hypotheses, naturalism would have far more evidence to support it than theism.
     
  17. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    19,311
    Of course naturalism is falsifiable. Naturalism is the belief that all things arise from natural rather than supernatural causes. Demonstrate something supernatural and naturalism is falsified.

    Now, YOU may not be able to falsify naturalism. But that's true of gravity as well. Every experiment we have run that attempts to falsify gravity has failed. So there are two possibilities:

    1) Gravity is fake and unscientific
    2) Gravity is proven to be real.
     
  18. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    Mod Hat — Well pointed ... so to speak

    It's actually been on the record for over a year, so take it up with the authority who makes it so:

    James R: Is this because your personal sympathies lie more with the theists? Or is it more a matter of individual personalities? It seems like you've taken a dislike to some of the atheists here, so you're willing to look past the regular behaviour of the theists here to focus on the atheists.

    Tiassa: I don't give a damn specifically about the theists any more than anyone else. Their religion is a problem to me when it is a problem to me. Around here they're generally annoying, but nobody says we have to keep them around if they're utterly full of shite. Well, okay, maybe you do.

    James R: Yeah, I do, and I've explained why, many times, at length.

    That was actually a strange occasion, one that comes up from time to time, a policy dispute spilling into public view. But in that moment, the Administrator is playing to the fourth wall—that is, performing for the audience—instead of addressing the discussion directly. The flip side of that would simply be that he's not paying attention, which is possible, but the prospect that he didn't already know the answer is dubious. Still, he is reminded—as this is a policy dispute, after all—that nobody says we have to keep someone around if they so dishonest, i.e., utterly full of shite—and also the possibility that, perhaps, as Administrator and such authority to make that decision, he might.

    And it turns out, yes, he does require that such people be here.

    What's that? Jump to it? Take it up with James R. Discussion quality? Oh, the disputes he and I have had over the years about discussion quality, basic conduct, and the sorts of things I hear people complaining about, these days. Sorry, I lost those arguments. Matters of authority, and all. The way things are reflect what James R wants. Take it up with him.
     
  19. arfa brane call me arf Valued Senior Member

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    7,153
    Philosophical problem time:

    Is there a presumption on the part of one who asks a question like: If God is real, how would you know?; that it's a question aimed at atheists (if you happen to be one), or at theists (likewise). Otherwise someone who doesn't care won't offer any opinion, perhaps.

    Maybe ask the opposite: If God is not real, how would you know?

    An atheist can provide lots of answers, but they answer questions about deities who create universes, and interfere in the events of humans. or generally about mythical beings; they point to mythology as some kind of catch-all. This is ultimately not philosophically satisfying.

    A theist might say the question doesn't make sense because God is real, although they can't prove this, except philosophically, so ultimately not to anyone's satisfaction.
     
  20. arfa brane call me arf Valued Senior Member

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    7,153
    Anthropological caveat: we began worshipping a long time ago; Stonehenge was constructed during the late Stone Age in Britain and there are older standing stones. Here, certain days were objects of worship, thanksgiving (perhaps). It's quite likely vocal activity, like singing, was a part of the proceedings.

    Worship in and of itself requires an object of worship. Perhaps the oldest objects we revered were our own dead, perhaps it was dead animals that we'd just killed. Maybe it was fire. We certainly worshipped or revered our own bodies for a long time, decorating them with all kinds of colorful or shiny objects (evidence that small seashells were traded in Africa more than 100,000 years ago points to this).
     
  21. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

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    8,502
  22. foghorn Registered Senior Member

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    585
    Tiassa, no one's forced to be here, including mods. I have learnt it's like for like here. Don't take the site too seriously you won't ''enjoy'' it.
     
  23. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    Well, that would be another reminder that atheism at Sciforums is an anti-identification, political dressage, a negative assertion with nothing to offer.

    If we skip over the diversity of theists, as atheists around Sciforums tend to do, simple things like religious people disagreeing about God get forgotten.

    And this idea, this, just say anything for atheism, attitude, is what, compared to the rest of atheism? Exemplary? Of course not; this isn't "atheism", it's Sciforums.

    As to your question, the answer remains that you wouldn't. Either life goes on, or it doesn't. It depends on how you define God.

    †​

    It's like this one atheist says, some definitions of God just aren't useful for judging. Watching people run past theology in order to play these stupid games reminds that it's not really about truth or freedom or caring about people, but a rush to satisfaction.

    But the answer to the topic question is that one would not know the difference. It doesn't change for a pretense of clever turnabout.

    If what the topic needs in order to function properly, is an aesthetic preference about God established and maintained by atheists, we might suggest you're doing it wrong, but as we're seeing, much of the atheism around here isn't really about truth or rational discourse and solutions, but satisfaction. Meanwhile, a roomful of zealots arguing about their religious opinions is a roomful of religious zealots arguing with one another.

    †​

    So let's run through some options:

    1) God is; you wouldn't know.

    2) God does not exist; you wouldn't know.

    3) Did that voice in someone's head go away? They wouldn't notice if it was never there to start with.​

    That last brings up an interesting question based on a phrase derived from shoebox religion: What if God "dies"? And the answer is one of three things: You wouldn't notice; you might not notice; "God" was not God.

    †​

    Think of it this way: One wants to know the answer to a question, except, no, one doesn't. Wait, what? Well, if one wants to know the answer to a question, why ask someone they know, expect, or believe is wrong? Is it vice? Okay, but if that's the answer, that's the answer. Information? Well, that's the thing: What does anybody do with information? If the point, as some, is to judge, then by what criteria? (As a practical note, at Sciforums, this is often where we run into complaints of, What about the theists? and such, because knowing someone else is wrong does not inherently mean knowing the right answer.)

    There is a larger back and forth going on, like the question of defining God, and the need to exclude basic pantheism as, "not a very useful definition because it does not separate God from anything else", and this is problematic because people, "can't meaningfully discuss what such a God would want, whether the God is conscious, what the God can do, or whatever, because the boring answers are: everything, yes and no, and whatever all things can do". In such a case↗, one of the most striking aspects is the surrender to, and insistence on, what sounds like shoebox monotheism.°

    This particular thread is an inevitable chapter in that back and forth. And on this question, if God is real, how would we know, there is a pretty straightforward answer. When we look back to shoebox monotheism, the answer is often that we're not supposed to know. But the thing with pantheism and panentheism is that—(and here is a value of affirmative assertions)—it happens to be woven into the background of one of the few aspects of his religious experience Jan Ardena, the topic poster in this chapter of what reads like a series of rhetorical skirmishes in a dispute of attrition. Even if people don't say it explicitly, there is always an aspect of it in the mystery about God. So even if I disdain his evangelism in general, I can tell you that on this particular question, in this particular thread, he has a field advantage, and the best thing for him to do is move as little as possible. He can, for the time being, and in the face of these challenges, hold this particular hill.

    That he can hold this particular hill: So freaking what? Who cares?

    And this is an important point: No, really, who gives a damn? If it's about the politics of it all, this assertion of God is not without its implications. Atheists should learn them, and use them.

    Charging this particular hill, for instance, is absolutely futile as long as he defends it properly, which is by doing virtually nothing. Letting him hold it all he wants, however, well, that's the thing. If atheists learn the implications, and attend them properly, suddenly Jan Ardena becomes a lot less dangerous.

    †​

    Coming 'round, then, it's true, turning the question to ask the opposite, "If God is not real, how would you know?" doesn't really change the answer.

    However, the presumption of asking atheists is part of the back and forth of the moment. Historically, the existential circumstance of God has been a powerful question between religious believers. Somewhere in the historical record is a criticism against early Christians, suggesting they were atheists because their pretense was so ridiculous they might as well believe in no god whatsoever. 'Twixt then and now, though, Christian political factions have fought and even prosecuted one another over such questions. If we look back to the fourth century, we'll find a political fight about this that technically resolved by heresy except for the existential absurdity, which in turn continues its influence in Christian expression today.

    There also remain a question about what who means by philosophical satisfaction. Answering, "questions about deities who create universes, and interfere in the events of humans. or generally about mythical beings", is not philosophically satisfying if undertaken in a context that disdains consideration of philosophy. I've been through this↗ with people, a couple times↗, in this years-long back and forth: A literary criticism built from what scraps the historical record provides, does function as an artistic critique reflecting the psychoanalytic meaning of history. The term psychohistorical is also in circulation, in re the why of history.

    By comparison, asking for simplistic, solipsistic definitions of God that others might judge according to prejudicially exaggerated expectations per an imposed but amorphous alternate assertion of reality, is a political exercise in dysfunction. Which, in turn, circles right 'round to the back and forth.

    A general consideration is to leave Jan to this hill, and see if he figures out what to do with it.

    A more particular answer, though, is that turning the question around as you have doesn't really change the answer.

    Consider, your question arises in a context of a bizarre dispute in which major players generally withhold actual argumentative assertion and, instead, mostly criticize each other. And within that back and forth, if the turnabout doesn't change the answer, neither does it break the pattern: If the atheist's answer to what it is they criticize is to point to whatever someone else tells them to criticize, we ought not expect philosophical satisfaction on the list of priorities. And in this case, the answer is that theistic believers would not know the difference, which in turn would likely fail to satisfy, in any aspect, those seeking to judge what they are unable to describe.

    The only effect of turning the question around is leaving those to sit and wait and complain about their lack of satisfaction.
    ____________________

    Notes:

    ° A practical question arises within the situational context: If the atheist cannot escape such simplistic religionism, why expect the religious people to do so?
     

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