U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Religion and Spirituality > Atheism and Agnosticism
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 06-12-2014, 12:40 PM
 
40,141 posts, read 26,779,715 times
Reputation: 6052

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by AREQUIPA View Post
As always, good, Capo. Pascal was approaching the problem from a viewpoint of statistical probability of best outcomes. I of course look at it from what Mystic Phd would call 'common sense' viewpoint.
In defense of a specific religion, Pascal's Wager is definitely foolish. Human knowledge is fallible and unlikely to be reliable enough to achieve sufficient specificity about God. As a hedge against negative afterlife consequences . . . it is silly. Any God that would have negative afterlife consequences attached to failure to simply believe is a capricious and unreliable petty tyrant against which there would no be guarantees. As a nod to the existence of a beneficent God . . . (which is presupposed in PW) . . . it is pointless because a beneficent God poses no threat whatsoever. In short . . . PW is useless as a reason to believe in God. But love IS a reason because it is its own reward.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 06-12-2014, 01:37 PM
 
122 posts, read 79,806 times
Reputation: 23
If you guys read the wiki brief on Pascal you would be more on to what he had in mind. So it doesn't seem these above fit in , for example if he was here to reply to the emphasis being made ther would be some good answering in those regards, in the scheme of the wager and its idea.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 02:51 PM
 
39,217 posts, read 10,895,806 times
Reputation: 5097
Mystic, I agree your post. Drew, i did read about Pascal and his wager and i remember that he ended up by saying that it was just a method of enhancing belief. I recall that as a Jansenist, his denomination was suspect and under the terms of Pascal's wager he had to hope that the pope was wrong and Pascal hadn't bet on the right rider, but the wrong horse.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 07:13 PM
 
122 posts, read 79,806 times
Reputation: 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by AREQUIPA View Post
Mystic, I agree your post. Drew, i did read about Pascal and his wager and i remember that he ended up by saying that it was just a method of enhancing belief. I recall that as a Jansenist, his denomination was suspect and under the terms of Pascal's wager he had to hope that the pope was wrong and Pascal hadn't bet on the right rider, but the wrong horse.

an adequate lead was mentioned for discovering the very significant error .

Last edited by Drew K; 06-12-2014 at 07:36 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 10:06 PM
 
122 posts, read 79,806 times
Reputation: 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
In defense of a specific religion, Pascal's Wager is definitely foolish. Human knowledge is fallible and unlikely to be reliable enough to achieve sufficient specificity about God. As a hedge against negative afterlife consequences . . . it is silly. Any God that would have negative afterlife consequences attached to failure to simply believe is a capricious and unreliable petty tyrant against which there would no be guarantees. As a nod to the existence of a beneficent God . . . (which is presupposed in PW) . . . it is pointless because a beneficent God poses no threat whatsoever. In short . . . PW is useless as a reason to believe in God. But love IS a reason because it is its own reward.

Above is not in keeping with information, as per mentioned in wikpedi.

Last edited by Drew K; 06-12-2014 at 11:18 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-13-2014, 05:21 AM
 
39,217 posts, read 10,895,806 times
Reputation: 5097
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drew K View Post
an adequate lead was mentioned for discovering the very significant error .

Sorry, what was the error again?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-13-2014, 02:59 PM
 
Location: TX
6,491 posts, read 5,245,374 times
Reputation: 2619
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lieneke View Post
If God exists, then given these possibilities:

You don't believe in God and God exists (screwed)
You do believe in God and God exists (only option if God exists)
You don't believe in God and God does not exist (bad choice if God exists)
You do believe in God and God does not exist (bad choice if God exists)

... there's only one choice.
Huh? On number three, "You don't believe in God and God does not exist", you can't give the consequence "bad choice if God exists" because in that case he/she/it wouldn't. And let's not forget there are other "gods" to choose from, which means believing in the Christian God could still bite you in the ass!

It's all a gamble, no matter what you "pick", which if this thread reminds us of anything it's that not everyone (if anyone) actually does pick what to believe or not believe. Sometimes you try really hard to do one but only manage to do the other.

So everyone should just guess and get on with their lives. Our chances are 50/50. Anyone who tells you otherwise (theist or atheist) is only trying to comfort themselves.

ETA: Actually, I contradicted myself a bit there. It's not 50/50. We have far worse odds, given that it isn't just a choice between atheism and theism, but between atheism and all the other gods one could worship. So... yeah. Who's up for some pizza?

Last edited by Vic 2.0; 06-13-2014 at 03:26 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-13-2014, 03:17 PM
 
122 posts, read 79,806 times
Reputation: 23
The problem with using that analogy is there is a coin but its not marked heads or tails. And even if it was there would be no use in the analogy because a random god would only produce random things which defeats any description of a useful god.

Last edited by Drew K; 06-13-2014 at 03:50 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-13-2014, 05:05 PM
 
39,217 posts, read 10,895,806 times
Reputation: 5097
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drew K View Post
The problem with using that analogy is there is a coin but its not marked heads or tails. And even if it was there would be no use in the analogy because a random god would only produce random things which defeats any description of a useful god.
Ok..that's pretty neat.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-14-2014, 02:55 AM
 
Location: Westminster, London
878 posts, read 1,167,126 times
Reputation: 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by mordant View Post
My guess is that you are not a particularly literalist / fundamentalist Christian. Correct?

I am not sure that you were objecting to anything useful. Anti-realism, simplistically, is the rejection of the existence any sort of mind-independent, or if you will, absolute morality. But many have pointed out that it is difficult to define realism, and neither realism nor anti-realism fare any better than each other as an explanation for anything.

At the end of the day, morality simply is what it is, not what we wish it to be. It either exists or doesn't, and is either objectively established external to the individual and collective human mind, or not.

I contend that morality is simply an emergent property of society whereby we are enabled to cooperate. I don't see why it needs to be any more complicated than that, and I utterly fail to see how an externally predetermined and given morality would be superior to that. The basic fallacy here is that there is a "magic" morality that solves the human condition. If such a morality existed, it would not be necessary to be concerned about human suffering in the first place. At the end of the day I regard morality as helpful (very helpful) but not curative of what ails mankind. And after at least two thousand years of opportunity to demonstrate its effectiveness, it certainly doesn't appear that Christianity has the cure either. If it did, it might be a start, but they'd still have to explain all the human suffering that preceded the cure.

I am also an empath and am disturbed by human suffering, but I do not see that the answer to that is a static moral code laid down in the bronze age. A dynamic and responsive code that can actually hope to engage with real world issues seems like it'd be far better.

There are many systems of scriptural interpretation that, if they don't run afoul of your particular ways of compartmentalizing and sensitivities to cognitive dissonance, and if they comport themselves with the things you really want to be true -- can make it seem so.

I haven't noted parsimony or Occamian priority to be prominent in Christian thinking or argument. You would be a first in that regard.

Christians largely follow the same morality everyone including atheists follow to begin with. It is even less remarkable that you would become more conformed to Christian norms as you progressively accepted Christian premises. To take this as "unexplainable" is a reach at best.

Impossible to comment on this without specifics, but it is a claim I would have made once upon a time myself. Confirmation bias and agency inference are not formal thought disorders, though. They are just evolutionary tendencies that one either compensates for, or not.

Israel is disproportionately on the world stage because it's at the center of a swirl of religious ideation that puts it there by assigning undue importance to it. Surely the Christian world view must explicate geopolitical phenomena that do NOT involve Israel??

Are you, then, a theistic evolutionist?

Science is based on a rather parsimonious set of first principles. No secular or religious system can fail to start with first principles. The question is, which system has a track record of success? Has religion ever invalidated anything science has devised, or has it tended to be the inverse?

Desperation does not strike me as a feature of evolutionary biology. It is a simple fact that if the science isn't there, the theory will collapse. But for that to happen, there has to be not simply people trying to poke holes in the theory, there has to be a COMPETING theory. Are you aware of anything on offer by way of a scientific theory that competes effectively with evolutionary theory? Or perhaps at least a testable hypothesis?
Sorry for being so late in responding to this post.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mordant View Post
Christians largely follow the same morality everyone including atheists follow to begin with. It is even less remarkable that you would become more conformed to Christian norms as you progressively accepted Christian premises. To take this as "unexplainable" is a reach at best.
This a surprisingly clumsy tautology for someone like you, and misunderstands my comment.

What needs to be explained is how one can become aware of specific knowledge, later recognised to be theologically sound, when one has no mode (no Bible study of any kind, no social exposure to Christians) by which to be exposed to such specific knowledge.


The rest of your objections are addressed by the following basic information.

1. What Christians ascribe to the inner witness of the Holy Spirit is a foundational-level experience on a par with innate knowledge such as the reality of the external world or the reality of one's senses. This means that it is in an entirely different epistemic category to mental tendencies such as promiscuous teleology, confirmation bias and wishful thinking.

2. Immutability and immediacy are not pre-requisites for moral realism. In a theological sense, Judeochristian morality clearly demonstrates a shifting moral epistemology from "the Law of the Letter" to the "Ministry of the Spirit", and clearly specifies that the solution to the "human condition" lies beyond temporal concerns.

3. Typologies and parallelisms are prior to hermeneutics. Studies of these phenomena are part of the very methodology by which one forms an interpretative basis of the text, so such study cannot represent hermeneutical cognitive dissonance or wishful thinking like you seem to believe.

4. Parsimony is an a posteriori rule; meaning that it is secondary to logical and metaphysical axiology. For your interest, William of Ockham was a Christian theologian and scholar.

5. A failing and explanatorily insufficient theory can still the best scientific explanation for a given phenomenon. An inference to the best explanation (abduction) can still be subject to independent epistemic scrutiny.

6. Science and religion are not a competitive dichotomy. Science only challenges religion when it unwittingly strays into metaphysical territory, invoking abductive inferences that involve geological and cosmological timescales. Inferences of this kind implicitly presume the truth of unverifiable ontological assumptions such as Uniformitarianism.

7. Geopolitical emphasis upon Israel is disproportionate even when viewed through the lens of religious conflict. Moreover, Israeology is as central to Christianity as it is to Judaism. The New Testament is an incomplete book without the Torah.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Religion and Spirituality > Atheism and Agnosticism
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top