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Theism/atheism debates

Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby Mucha Man » 18 Feb 2016, 23:10

Interesting sounding book. I just got it on Amazon for US$7 as a rental.
“Everywhere else in the world is also really old” said Prof. Liu, a renowned historian at Beijing University. “We always learn that China has 5000 years of cultural heritage, and that therefore we are very special. It appears that other places also have some of this heritage stuff. And are also old. Like, really old.”

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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby Ermintrude » 19 Feb 2016, 10:08

finley wrote:
Tempo Gain wrote:This? Pretty interesting.

I wasn't aware there's still research activity on the subject, but it was originally discovered a long time ago when US researchers had a lot more leeway to do horrible experiments on mental patients (60s-70s). Some patient had electrodes implanted in his brain for some unrelated reason (possibly epilepsy research) and the medics were poking around in there. Stimulating one particular area produced "intense religious experiences", IIRC.

I don't remember the precise details - I did my degree 25 years ago.


“I get attacked by everyone,” says Patrick McNamara, associate professor of neurology at Boston University and author of The Neuroscience of Religious Experience. “Atheists hate me because I’m saying religion has some basis in the brain and fundamentalist Christians hate me because I’m saying religion is nothing but brain impulses.”

:lol:

It's definitely tough being a scientist, and I'm not being facetious.


Isn't that just kind of common sense, though? That there would be?
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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby MikeN » 19 Feb 2016, 15:10

triceratopses wrote:
I would be astonished if it did. It generally takes a high caliber person to recognize the necessity for controlling one's senses in this day and age.

Also it's a cliche to me to constantly watch the vapidity rise to the surface as the fire of youth fades in people. It becomes too apparent to themselves that they wasted most of their lives in nothingness.


Wow, that's a pretty heavy koan you got there, brother.
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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby MikeN » 19 Feb 2016, 16:06

finley:
The Old Testament scares the crap out of me - it's enough to put anyone off religion - but I've always found the decalogue interesting because it did apparently come from nowhere. I've mentioned this before: it resembles no contemporary moral code. Not even remotely. The 'rules' are utterly alien to the culture of that time and place - you can easily figure this out from the other stories in the O.T


Let's take a look-see, using the True Protestant version of course.

1)Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

A holdover from the henotheism of early beliefs, when Yahweh was the particular god of the Hebrews, one of the 70 sons of El; reminding the Hebrews that he is their special protector. Most local cultures were the same, worshipping one particlar god among the pantheon. If you think it refers to One and Only One God, there were of course earlier monotheisms, most notably the worship of Aten in Egypt.

2)Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.


Most modern scholars attribute the Decalogue to the Babylonian Exile: with the Temple destroyed and the Jews in a foreign land, they would be tempted to fall into worship of false gods. Once you set up your own idol it's easy to see the parallels with others. Even if it started before that (though modern archeology tends to disagree) it's largely a marker to distinguish the Israelites from their neighbors. Note as well that Atenism banned idols.


3)Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that takes his name in vain.

The original meaning not being against swearing, but against making a false vow in the name of a god, which was a pretty standard proscription among various cultures, with thousands of folk-tales and warnings to lend credence.

4)Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.

Many other cultures have regular prescribed rest days; check Wiki on "Sabbath" for examples.

5)Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God gives thee.

Pretty standard in any traditional culture, and much more emphaisised in some , like Confucianism.

6) Thou shalt not kill.[ commit murder i.e. unlawful killing]
Thou shalt not commit adultery.
Thou shalt not steal.
Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.
Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor's.


These are as well standard in any society that needs to work together; basic rules of "play nice".
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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby triceratopses » 19 Feb 2016, 22:48

Tempo Gain wrote:There's nothing wrong with that, but can you blame me? I have a worldview as well, which I've given considerable consideration to.


Obviously, mate. You do not even know what one of the main authorities of your own school of thought asserts.

You do not even know that is it STANDARD for scientific materialists to explain that the mind is PURELY an illusion.

For a scientific materialist, it's extremely contradictory to say that mind is the brain and yet rely on subjective experience ie. non-physical 1st person experience aka qualia to establish morality.

Which is why educated materialists say there is no morality, since morality cannot be applied to the movement of particles.
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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby Tempo Gain » 20 Feb 2016, 00:49

Okay. How's the toilet doing?
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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby triceratopses » 20 Feb 2016, 11:07

Its ok seems like

BrentGolf is also completely confused on the topic, saying "if you're one of those people that likes to talk existentially about how nothing is really real, we aren't actually experiencing the things we think we are, then fine have fun and enjoy the circular logic that results."

He doesn't know that your positions assert exactly that.

Dennett denies qualia (subject awareness/experience) and says we are mechanical machines (mindless zombies) with illusions of experience. Our current actions were determined and set in motion 3/10000000 of a second after the big bang. Thats scientific materialism.

Churchland says that as neuroscience gains more data the entire concept of qualia will be discarded.
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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby BrentGolf » 20 Feb 2016, 15:33

triceratopses wrote:BrentGolf is also completely confused on the topic


I'm not the slightest bit confused, but thank you. Showing concern for others' well being is very moral of you and fits in nicely with the thread. :thumbsup:

As has been explained to you several different times though (hopefully you can finally absorb the simplicity of it this time) we all understand materialism. You're not teaching anybody anything. You mentioned him so I'll say, I much prefer to read Dennett than you, no offense.

So perhaps you'd like to constructively move the conversation forward? Where do you think your concern for my well being comes from?
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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby Tempo Gain » 20 Feb 2016, 17:40

triceratopses wrote:
Dennett denies qualia (subject awareness/experience) and says we are mechanical machines (mindless zombies) with illusions of experience. Our current actions were determined and set in motion 3/10000000 of a second after the big bang. Thats scientific materialism.



I don't believe that. Dilemma solved!
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Re: Theism/atheism debates

Postby fh2000 » 21 Feb 2016, 02:17

marasan wrote:
BrentGolf wrote:On the one side, even if science backs God into the tiniest little corner to the point where it's absurd to believe, and we could prove scientifically how life began and what happened before the big bang, that still wouldn't disprove God.


When it comes to the question of whether there is a God (which when defined for debate purposes as a creator of the universe), it seems to me that sometimes the atheist wins and other times the theist wins, precisely because I don't think science can take us any further. The Big Bang theory tells us that the universe was created ex nihilo. There was nothing (meaning no matter, no space, no time), and in an instant everything. So what happened before there was nothing? Who knows?! It's one philosophy against another.


I say, 玉皇大帝,created it.
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