Most British scientists: Richard Dawkins' work misrepresents science

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by paddoboy, Nov 7, 2016.

  1. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Yazata:

    I agree with most of what you wrote above. So, a lot of this post will just be agreement. Nevertheless...


    "Religion" is a very broad term. Clearly, science won't ever demolish the idea that there are "higher powers" or supernatural forces/beings/phenomena.

    However, science certainly can demolish specific empirical claims that religions make. For example, if a religious "scripture" claims that the Earth sits on the back of a giant tortoise, or that the Earth is only 6000 years old, then those claims are empirically falsifiable, and therefore squarely in the scope of science.

    I agree.

    Yes.

    As long as those hypothetical supernatural realities don't try to muscle in on "nature", then I don't think science is concerned with them. If they aren't muscling in on the natural world, then the hypothetical supernatural realities don't have a lot to do with their time, though, as far as I can tell.

    It's very difficult (probably impossible, in fact) to verify the existence of another "reality" based purely on states of mind. The hurdle of proving that there's anything there other than the state of mind itself is a high one to jump.

    Yes. These are interesting philosophical issues.

    When it comes down to it, even the way we divide up the world into discrete "things" is a kind of arbitrary-seeming process that can seem more pragmatic than actually embedded in "reality".

    Well, there's some argument there, and most scientists don't actually worry about these kinds of questions on a day-to-day basis.

    For example, we can argue over whether a mathematical concept such as "triangle" is something that exists out there in a separate Platonic "second reality", or whether it is just a useful abstraction that we invented to help make sense of the world, or to describe it.
     
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  3. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    It is often said that mathematics is the language of physics.
     
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  5. StrangerInAStrangeLand SubQuantum Mechanic Valued Senior Member

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    The only thing that would give any credibility to the God hypothesis is for some god to come out of hiding & show itself.
    <>
     
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  7. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    "Science's methodological naturalism tells science that it should seek a natural cause or explanation for any physical event or state of affairs, but it doesn't tell us that everything that might hypothetically exist has to be physical or fall within the scope of natural science."

    Yes it does. Anything that hypothetically exist ie the planet Pluto (yes I still call it a planet) was thought to exist because of disturbances in other planets orbits.

    The discipline of science ask "why were the orbits being disturbed?"

    Again with the "seek a natural cause".

    Do you think science would go looking for an unnatural cause?

    I don't know of anything able to act on any physical matter without being physical itself.

    I'm happy to be corrected on this.

    And what's with "natural science"?

    Is there an "unnatural science"?

    Could it be unnatural science looks for unnatural causes?

    Where are the unnatural lectures to learn this unnatural field?

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  8. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    "Science's methodological naturalism tells science that it should seek a natural cause or explanation for any physical event or state of affairs, but it doesn't tell us that everything that might hypothetically exist has to be physical or fall within the scope of natural science."

    Yes it does. Anything that hypothetically exist ie the planet Pluto (yes I still call it a planet) was thought to exist because of disturbances in other planets orbits.

    The discipline of science ask "why were the orbits being disturbed?"

    Again with the "seek a natural cause".

    Do you think science would go looking for an unnatural cause?

    I don't know of anything able to act on any physical matter without being physical itself.

    I'm happy to be corrected on this.

    And what's with "natural science"?

    Is there an "unnatural science"?

    Could it be unnatural science looks for unnatural causes?
     
  9. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    Morals are frequently a person's view of right or wrong ie not against the law but you should do or shouldn't do what you are not doing or doing.

    Don't see any connection between morals and art etc. Or connection with "facts".

    I know what art etc I like but can't say any of it guides my thoughts or inspires me. And have never thought of any of my likes in such areas as instruction manuals. How and what would my taste in such areas be instruct me on?

    Am I DEAD???? Ahhh
     
  10. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    "Saying "God did it" is just a different way of saying, "we haven't got a clue.""

    NO it is not.

    Presented with an event not understood a religious person might resort to "God did it" as an article of faith (which in a way is superfluous because God has done, is doing and will continue to do EVERYTHING) and leave it at that.
    As if "God did it" is self-explanatory.

    The default position for scientists is "we haven't got a clue." followed by "I will try and find out".

    As to "..the possibility that there are myriad other universes with completely different sets of natural laws" (again with the natural laws).

    Can someone please give me an example of unnatural laws (not divergent practices from average practice)?

    It is not the responsibility of any party to disprove a statement. The party making any claim takes on the responsibility of proof.

    I don't take it as statement of fact and I am not a scientist (I do take the default position I don't know if what I propose is true or not) but I suspect that there are "...myriad other universes..." out there.

    But I also suspect they observe the same laws as this universe. Pity I haven't a grant to investigate.

    Thought bubble. Why would God create a myriad of universes let alone give them different laws?

    Or does God give each universe its own Son of God?

    Boy wouldn't you like to be there at The Great and Grand Church of the United Universes of the Cosmos?

    Do you think they would agree on any resolution?
     
  11. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    I like the video

    Disagree totally with the conclusion

    He gives clear, not always concise, explanations of the chemical background of life that even with not knowing anything about the chemicals and reactions he talks about I follow his logic.

    And I believe him. He would need balls as big as bowling balls to lie about such processes.

    He gives many many ways in which life cannot have formed. And again I believe him.

    But (there's always a but) here is a news flash.

    Science is NOT looking for ways in which life did not form.

    If has found the way life DID form Whoopidede Doda Whoopidede DeDe.

    He will be right up there, or even above, the man on the moon Neil.

    Get ready for the mother of all ticker tape parades. (Do they still have ticker tape?)

    Can I have your autograph before you become to famous?

    By the way I actually have not seen you research paper on how you made your mind blowing discovery.

    Can you direct me to where I can obtain a copy?

    Yours in hope

    I'm a believer Michael When I see it
     
  12. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,749
    I like the video

    Disagree totally with the conclusion

    He gives clear, not always concise, explanations of the chemical background of life that even with not knowing anything about the chemicals and reactions he talks about I follow his logic.

    And I believe him. He would need balls as big as bowling balls to lie about such processes.

    He gives many many ways in which life cannot have formed. And again I believe him.

    But (there's always a but) here is a news flash.

    Science is NOT looking for ways in which life did not form.

    If has found the way life DID form Whoopidede Doda Whoopidede DeDe.

    He will be right up there, or even above, the man on the moon Neil.

    Get ready for the mother of all ticker tape parades. (Do they still have ticker tape?)

    Can I have your autograph before you become to famous?

    By the way I actually have not seen you research paper on how you made your mind blowing discovery.

    Can you direct me to where I can obtain a copy?

    Yours in hope

    I'm a believer Michael When I see it
     
  13. Q-reeus Valued Senior Member

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    2,605
    Well hello Michael. Some serious trawling there! I made a strategic error in #85, in deference to then very recent 'sensitivities' over a string of real or tactical 'resignations' that various other members were bemoaning. Anyway, the previous post was imho likely a thin-skinned, nasty reaction to comment in #62 - a case of identification-with-and-projection. Well as they say 'the devil looks after his own' (yes, that is just meant as a rhetorical phrase), and in bowing out to avoid any nasty bun fight, it left another member's pathetic defacto admission of failure free to go unchecked. And was a come-on signal for others to quickly swoop in and rage triumphantly against their straw-man foes. One in particular. What's more, the charge I had hijacked the thread proved to be laughably ironic - given the continued direction it took. The rule, not the exception, at SF. But I digress.

    Getting back to your drift, that science is not looking for ways in which life did not form. No problem with that per se. What I DO have a problem with is the prevailing Marxist 'scientific atheism' attitude in our so-called West that is a transplant straight out of Stalinist USSR era. Toe the party line or else. Manifest, not by firing squad or deportation to the salt mines of Siberia, but by career destruction and ostricizing those raising serious questions re the official Darwinist dogma. Not so much that evolution hasn't occurred - only YEC types argue that one. But the key stumbling block - abiogenesis. For me, Peltzer's presentation was the eye opener. The clear targeting of the prime weakness of any bootstrap scheme. Inevitable and unavoidable self-poisoning. The first and fatal of many further hurdles. I repeat the point raised back in #45:
    " the onus is on the materialists to provide credible counterarguments."
    Which if you really want to be true to the spirit of science as opposed to militant Marxist Scientism, is surely reasonable. Even if committed atheists insist not.

    Regardless of the imo likely utter futility of all attempts, were it ever to be conclusively shown purely naturalistic abiogenesis can theoretically work in a real world environment, I would accept it. But think it foolish to commit to an atheist dogma given the actual state of affairs.

    You may have noticed something. In all of the raging against 'religionists' in previous posts, not a single one ever attempted to address the actual points raised by Peltzer in that presentation. Which imo speaks much louder than their frothing at the mouth rages against 'religionists'. But who am I, not Caltech educated, to argue such things!
    Umm....see my above.
     
  14. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    24,690
    As a Moderator, I'm held to a higher standard. I did not graduate from Caltech (nor have I ever claimed to--I transferred to a state university and got a degree in business) but the Admins can easily get my transcripts.
    The only way to "demolish" religion is probably to simply kill all the religious people. We don't need science for that: they've been killing each other for thousands of years, over disagreements that are nearly impossible for the rest of us to even comprehend.
    You speak as though there is something more than nature. Last time I looked, the entire universe was natural. The same is true of all of our thoughts and ideas: merely manifestations of the electrons whizzing around inside our brains.
    You keep making references to... well, "stuff" is the only noun I can use here... that exists outside the realm of nature. And I continue to wonder what evidence there is for the existence of anything that exists outside the realm of nature, since you provide none.

    One of the most important tenets of science is that the burden of proof falls upon the person who states a hypothesis, not on the one whom he is trying to convince.
    The electrons in our brain are real, physical things. The fact that they move around, then, is also physical. The organization of the signals in our brain cells are just as physical. The fact that the higher-order phyla of animals can organize these signals in large complex structures that we call "thoughts" and "memories" is just nature at work once again.
     
  15. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    24,690
    And back in the early centuries of the Bronze Age, they did just that. Well... at least that's what the scribes of the era tell us.
    The term "natural science" refers to the study of the natural world. To quote Wikipedia:
     
  16. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    3,749

    I'm replying to this while on holiday in Bali at a night club with a beer in hand. Music making the floor register 3 on the ol Richter.

    So may be not the best setting for critical thinking but here goes.

    I agree with all his points. No argument. No rebuttal.

    Except (read but) if he knows (or even thinks) ID had a finger (a toe or the long sinuous gloop of the red white and yellow Gloopians) in making the components of the human race tell us dumb wats how it WAS done.

    At the very least produce the working notes.

    Back to the beer

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  17. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    Is there an unnatural World?
     
  18. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

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    There are a bunch of things you don't understand. Valid objections to prevailing scientific theories aren't treated with career destruction as you imply. Bullshit theories from people that don't understand the prevailing theory can be. ToE has nothing to do with atheism. Abiogenesis has almost nothing to do with ToE. No one needs to prove materialism. Materialism is already evident. If you want to prove a supernatural being, do that. A single materialist (scientific) theory isn't the foundation of all science.

    So, one can show that a specific pathway to abiogenesis may be unlikely, so what? You haven't proven that it's impossible. You haven't proven that evolution by natural selection is impossible. You haven't proven that materialism is wrong. You haven't shown theism to be any more or less likely.

    "not a single one ever attempted to address the actual points raised by Peltzer in that presentation"
    I'm sure you think it's some kind of victory that those who are less familiar with chemistry don't assert knowledge they don't have, but that's intellectual honesty. I'm also quite sure you don't understand Peltzer's arguments either. He may be wrong, Miller may have been wrong, so what? Being wrong is embraced by scientists. It's how knowledge progresses.

    For you, Pelzer is just a priest that attacks the people you believe to be wrong, so you get behind the effort while knowing absolutely nothing about it. There isn't anything more authoritarian than that.
     
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  19. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    How Abiogenesis occurred to a large degree is still debatable and there are many hypothetical pathways, but if we are to speak scientifically, the simple fact remains, that Abiogenesis happened, evident by the fact that prior to some time, there was no life: And then there was!
    I like Panspermia, as is argued a lot by Carl Sagan. The point is as mentioned in a following article, is that "geology begat biology".
    It's also rather amusing how a subject/thread started to compare styles of two reputable supporters of Abiogenesis, can raise the angst and blustering among some

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    Here's one.....
    http://www.cell.com/cell/abstract/S0092-8674(12)01438-9?_returnURL=http://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0092867412014389?showall=true&cc=y=


    The Origin of Membrane Bioenergetics:

    Harnessing energy as ion gradients across membranes is as universal as the genetic code. We leverage new insights into anaerobe metabolism to propose geochemical origins that account for the ubiquity of chemiosmotic coupling, and Na+/H+transporters in particular. Natural proton gradients acting across thin FeS walls within alkaline hydrothermal vents could drive carbon assimilation, leading to the emergence of protocells within vent pores. Protocell membranes that were initially leaky would eventually become less permeable, forcing cells dependent on natural H+ gradients to pump Na+ ions. Our hypothesis accounts for the Na+/H+ promiscuity of bioenergetic proteins, as well as the deep divergence between bacteria and archaea.

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


    or this experiment.........
    http://www.nature.com/news/2009/090520/full/459316a.html


    Origin of life: Nascence man

    Like an alchemist of yore, Mike Russell is taking basic elements and trying to transform them — not into gold, but into the stirrings of life, John Whitfield reports.

    You could call the two linked aluminium containers in Mike Russell's lab the biological equivalent of a particle accelerator. But rather than simulating the birth of the Universe, he hopes that this apparatus will recreate the first moments of life on Earth, and give experimental support to his ideas about how geology begat biology. Alternatively, you could call it a machine for making 4-billion-year-old waste.

    One of the containers holds a liquid that mimics the oceans of the early Earth. The water is rich in carbon dioxide and iron, has a pH of 5.5 and is held at room temperature. The other container is heated to 130 °C, and its water is laden with hydrogen and sulphide. With a pH of 11, this second fluid is meant to stand in for the hot waters that spewed out of ocean-bottom springs early in the planet's history. The liquids mix in a chrome steel pressure barrel containing a catalyst of iron and nickel sulphide.

    It is here that Russell hopes to reproduce life's first steps, by reacting the carbon dioxide in the 'ocean' water with the hydrogen in the 'spring' water to make the simple organic molecules methane and acetate. Step by step, he thinks, the chemistry of life accreted around this reaction, until eventually, like caravels from the court of Henry the Navigator, the first cells carried it around the world.

    more at link..........
     
  20. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    https://arxiv.org/pdf/1107.3835v4.pdf

    Bayesian analysis of the astrobiological implications of life’s early emergence on Earth:

    Life arose on Earth sometime in the first few hundred million years after the young planet had cooled to the point that it could support water-based organisms on its surface. The early emergence of life on Earth has been taken as evidence that the probability of abiogenesis is high, if starting from young-Earth-like conditions. We revisit this argument quantitatively in a Bayesian statistical framework. By constructing a simple model of the probability of abiogenesis, we calculate a Bayesian estimate of its posterior probability, given the data that life emerged fairly early in Earth’s history and that, billions of years later, curious creatures noted this fact and considered its implications. We find that, given only this very limited empirical information, the choice of Bayesian prior for the abiogenesis probability parameter has a dominant influence on the computed posterior probability. Although terrestrial life’s early emergence provides evidence that life might be common in the Universe if early-Earth-like conditions are, the evidence is inconclusive and indeed is consistent with an arbitrarily low intrinsic probability of abiogenesis for plausible uninformative priors. Finding a single case of life arising independently of our lineage (on Earth, elsewhere in the Solar System, or on an extrasolar planet) would provide much stronger evidence that abiogenesis is not extremely rare in the Universe.
    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    https://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/0907/0907.3552.pdf

    Origin of Life:

    Abstract

    The evolution of life has been a big enigma despite rapid advancements in the fields of biochemistry, astrobiology, and astrophysics in recent years. The answer to this puzzle has been as mind-boggling as the riddle relating to evolution of Universe itself. Despite the fact that panspermia has gained considerable support as a viable explanation for origin of life on the Earth and elsewhere in the Universe, the issue remains far from a tangible solution. This paper examines the various prevailing hypotheses regarding origin of life like abiogenesis, RNA world, iron-sulphur world, and panspermia; and concludes that delivery of life-bearing organic molecules by the comets in the early epoch of the Earth alone possibly was not responsible for kick-starting the process of evolution of life on our planet.
     
  21. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    Of course we still haven't really established that religion has no supporting evidence. The suggestion so far is merely that it lacks empirical evidence.

    Haven't you heard you can't prove a negative?

    Ya but. Ya but. Ya but.

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  22. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    What is the supporting evidence?
    ya but, ya but, ya but.

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  23. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    Again you can't prove a negative ie I can't prove that something does NOT exist.

    Ya but. Ya but. Ya but is frequently the response given when you give factual evidence. Ya but bounces back.

    "Oh hunny look at that beautiful sunset. Doesn't it make your heart sing that God in his infinite wisdom gave us such a wonderful universe? What do you see?"

    Ya but coming up

    "I see a flaming ball of gas of millions of atomic explosions flinging out death rays giving me skin cancer."

    Cousin to Ya but arriving

    Ya so

    "No fuck for you tonight. "

    You would think he would learn wouldn't you?"
     

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