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Do atheists believe in some intelligent entity?
Posted: 30 November 2016 03:05 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I appreciate that atheists do not believe in a God in the religious sense of the word.  But do most atheists agree that some intelligent entity initiated or guided the process?


I am willing to accept that if you throw enough atoms together in some space-time machine you end up with us… but ‘someone or thing’ coded those atoms!  Are scientists then in the process of getting to know this ‘someone or thing’ by deciphering its work of art. And also perhaps what the purpose of this work of art is.


I have heard at some stage the theory that because the Big Bang has a beginning and an eventual end, when all hydrogen and helium are depleted, the logical deduction points to some purpose… that is; a project has a purpose.


My belief, or rather gut feel, leans heavily towards an intelligent entity, to the extent that I find it difficult that some atheists end at believing in nothing-nothing. No purpose driven kick-starter that initiated the process…  I am not saying that us humans are neccesarily in the limelight of this experiment, it might be to witness the growth (or evolution) of consciousness of atoms over millennia.

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Posted: 30 November 2016 11:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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peter.berry - 30 November 2016 03:05 PM

I appreciate that atheists do not believe in a God in the religious sense of the word.  But do most atheists agree that some intelligent entity initiated or guided the process?

There is no indication of that. Even if there is such an entity, there is no reason to think it resembles the biblical god.


I am willing to accept that if you throw enough atoms together in some space-time machine you end up with us… but ‘someone or thing’ coded those atoms!  Are scientists then in the process of getting to know this ‘someone or thing’ by deciphering its work of art. And also perhaps what the purpose of this work of art is.

They aren’t going to do it with a work of art. They’ll do it with the scientific method. There may be art in that but not the kind you are referring to. It’s not the kind of art you’ll find in a museum.

I have heard at some stage the theory that because the Big Bang has a beginning and an eventual end, when all hydrogen and helium are depleted, the logical deduction points to some purpose… that is; a project has a purpose.

Not necessarily and It doesn’t mean a designer.


My belief, or rather gut feel, leans heavily towards an intelligent entity, to the extent that I find it difficult that some atheists end at believing in nothing-nothing. No purpose driven kick-starter that initiated the process…  I am not saying that us humans are neccesarily in the limelight of this experiment, it might be to witness the growth (or evolution) of consciousness of atoms over millennia.

Atheists don’t necessarily believe in nothing. We can speculate, too. We just don’t make up fairytales. We’‘d need some concrete evidence before we accept an explanation. Without that there is no reason to believe in a designer, intelligent or otherwise. It’s not likely that it’s something humans will ever know, so why worry about it? If there were a designer it apparently doesn’t want to reveal him/her/itself. I can live very well without knowing, just as everyone else on earth has not known since the dawn of man. Most atheists I know don’t think about it much. The subject only comes up when some religious individual decides he knows the answer.

[ Edited: 20 December 2016 12:13 PM by LoisL ]
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Posted: 01 December 2016 08:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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peter.berry - 30 November 2016 03:05 PM

My belief, or rather gut feel, leans heavily towards an intelligent entity, to the extent that I find it difficult that some atheists end at believing in nothing-nothing. No purpose driven kick-starter that initiated the process…  I am not saying that us humans are neccesarily in the limelight of this experiment, it might be to witness the growth (or evolution) of consciousness of atoms over millennia.

Your belief explains nothing. Where did this imagined entity originate? What created whatever created your imaginary purpose-driven kick starter? Is it turtles all the way down?

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Posted: 02 December 2016 08:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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peter.berry - 30 November 2016 03:05 PM

I appreciate that atheists do not believe in a God in the religious sense of the word.  But do most atheists agree that some intelligent entity initiated or guided the process?

I am willing to accept that if you throw enough atoms together in some space-time machine you end up with us… but ‘someone or thing’ coded those atoms!  Are scientists then in the process of getting to know this ‘someone or thing’ by deciphering its work of art. And also perhaps what the purpose of this work of art is.

I have heard at some stage the theory that because the Big Bang has a beginning and an eventual end, when all hydrogen and helium are depleted, the logical deduction points to some purpose… that is; a project has a purpose.

My belief, or rather gut feel, leans heavily towards an intelligent entity, to the extent that I find it difficult that some atheists end at believing in nothing-nothing. No purpose driven kick-starter that initiated the process…  I am not saying that us humans are neccesarily in the limelight of this experiment, it might be to witness the growth (or evolution) of consciousness of atoms over millennia.

I can’t speak for “most atheists”.  In my opinion though, there doesn’t need to be a “purpose” for the universe, and the unguided forces of nature were probably enough, as far as I know.  But I’m not dogmatic about it.  If your feeling is for an intelligent creator, that’s okay.  There’s no need for you to feel defensive about it, unless as Lois says above, you plan to come in here and tell us that we’re “wrong”.  In which case you’d better have a good argument.  smile

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Posted: 02 December 2016 09:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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But do most atheists agree that some intelligent entity initiated or guided the process?

no

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Posted: 02 December 2016 11:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Our senses are so dull that the world only seems to be separated into this versus that. And it doesn’t help that Western religions have programmed us to think that way too. But let’s look at the facts. We’re just star-stuff arranged into temporary objects. And we happen to be able to think. Like Carl Sagan said, we’re one way the universe contemplates itself. We’re not apart from (as western religions would have it) but part of. Add to this the notion that there could be, probably are, beings similar to ourselves but say a mere 100,000 years more advanced. They probably have concepts we can’t even imagine yet, maybe uncreated creations, something from nothing, etc. We’re just babies and we unfortunately need to just wait it out until someday all of us, in a completely different material form, contemplate ourselves (the universe that is) with more conceptual horsepower so to speak.

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Posted: 02 December 2016 11:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Peter.berry: I appreciate that atheists do not believe in a God in the religious sense of the word.  But do most atheists agree that some intelligent entity initiated or guided the process?

Why should we? There isn"t a scrap of evidence that that might be the case. Do you believe that it could be the Flying Spaghetti Monster?

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Posted: 02 December 2016 09:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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If by chance you are looking for facts, try getting your feet wet on evolution.
 
You Share 70% of Your Genes with This Slimy Worm
Over 500 million years ago, humans and certain worms shared a common ancestor.

http://www.seeker.com/you-share-70-of-your-genes-with-this-slimy-worm-1770502230.html

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Posted: 02 December 2016 11:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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peter.berry - 30 November 2016 03:05 PM

I appreciate that atheists do not believe in a God in the religious sense of the word.  But do most atheists agree that some intelligent entity initiated or guided the process?

A purely mathematical functions may appear to possess intelligence. But that would be called pseudo or quasi intelligent without self-awareness.

How could we tell the difference?  This may clarify.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOtAFiI39_I

and

http://www.ted.com/talks/roger_antonsen_math_is_the_hidden_secret_to_understanding_the_world?

[ Edited: 02 December 2016 11:39 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 03 December 2016 04:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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MikeYohe - 02 December 2016 09:04 PM

If by chance you are looking for facts, try getting your feet wet on evolution.
 
You Share 70% of Your Genes with This Slimy Worm
Over 500 million years ago, humans and certain worms shared a common ancestor.

http://www.seeker.com/you-share-70-of-your-genes-with-this-slimy-worm-1770502230.html

So what? We share more of our genes with a different slimy worm named Trump. We apparently share a common ancestor with him, too. Some things are best left unsaid,

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Posted: 03 December 2016 05:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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MikeYohe - 02 December 2016 09:04 PM

If by chance you are looking for facts, try getting your feet wet on evolution.
 
You Share 70% of Your Genes with This Slimy Worm
Over 500 million years ago, humans and certain worms shared a common ancestor.

http://www.seeker.com/you-share-70-of-your-genes-with-this-slimy-worm-1770502230.html

That is not necessarily true.  Hazen identified at least three possible separate sites on earth alone where development of life may have occurred. 

I find it difficult to believe that sulphur based life around a Black Smoker should necessarily have evolved into iron based organisms, such as from volcanic activity, or some primordial soup which experienced a probabilistic threshold event..

Each one of those *Trees of Life* may have had in common certain prevalent chemicals which are fundamentally required (such as carbon), but that does not necessarily make them chronologically *related*, except in the most abstract way.

Suppose, life evolved on other planets. Would those organisms be related to us? 
Consider, in view of the enormous variety of life on earth alone, which is actually an indication, that self-organization into a “living” organism may not be such a big deal at all.  Robert Hazen has alluded to this several times.

I believe there may be a certain ego-centric aspect to the claim that all living things in the universe were created at the same general time and should or could have produced life similar to ours.

Stars and their planets all evolved at vastly different times in the history of the universe.  If life developed on any of these planets it may well have a completely different chemical structures from those on earth..

[ Edited: 03 December 2016 06:16 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 03 December 2016 08:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Write4U - 03 December 2016 05:58 PM

Stars and their planets all evolved at vastly different times in the history of the universe.  If life developed on any of these planets it may well have a completely different chemical structures from those on earth..

We studied this in my college astronomy classes, and in reality life on other planets will probably have similar chemical structures as life on Earth. That doesn’t mean it will have RNA and DNA, but most life will likely be carbon based. We know how elements form, and we know they form the same way throughout the observable universe. The distribution of elements is the same everywhere within statistical norms. Life on Earth is carbon based simply because carbon easily forms bonds with other elements. Silicon based life is certainly possible, but would take much longer to emerge and evolve because silicon does not form bonds as easily as carbon. This gives carbon based life a huge adaptation advantage.

Basic chemistry is the same everywhere, and thus the chemistry of life is overwhelmingly likely to be very similar everywhere. The details, however, will probably be different. Mating will certainly be out of the question unless an intelligent agent seeded life throughout the universe.

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Posted: 03 December 2016 08:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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“As you sow, so shall you reap”.  That would have been one large seed hopper/spreader…. LOL

[ Edited: 03 December 2016 08:21 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 05 December 2016 04:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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For me the question of an intelligent creator is something of interest.  We are indeed just star dust that came together with very precise forces and chemistry and evolutionary tricks.  Don’t forget the consciousness bit.  If we want to define this as the spaghetti-jelly monster that is fine.  All this is for me still pretty awesome.  Most probably there is life abundantly over the universe.  And photons might look different elsewhere.  But none of this contradicts with the intelligent creator theory.  I am not too concerned about the further question of the creator’s, creator, and its creator, I think we have enough on our plates for now.  The theory of the “we are the God”, for me also falls in the creator theory.

I am somewhat amazed that atheists quickly stops at the science portion and do not philosophy about the beauty of science, in all its splendour - from atoms to consciousness.  Does this appreciation not at least push you towards some creator?  The ‘what does a creator imply?’ is the next set of questions.  A true atheist then cannot believe in a non-creator, only that it does not care to speculate further, not withstanding the “awesomeness"factor… is this an accurate deduction?

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Posted: 05 December 2016 08:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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peter.berry - 05 December 2016 04:10 PM

For me the question of an intelligent creator is something of interest.  We are indeed just star dust that came together with very precise forces and chemistry and evolutionary tricks.  Don’t forget the consciousness bit.  If we want to define this as the spaghetti-jelly monster that is fine.  All this is for me still pretty awesome.  Most probably there is life abundantly over the universe.  And photons might look different elsewhere.  But none of this contradicts with the intelligent creator theory.  I am not too concerned about the further question of the creator’s, creator, and its creator, I think we have enough on our plates for now.  The theory of the “we are the God”, for me also falls in the creator theory.

I believe you underestimate the intense interest and research by the scientific community.
The problem that Science faces is the rule that “an extraordinary claim requires at least some proof”. If that proof is beyond what we are able to observe and quantify, in Science this is not sufficient evidence of mathematical data to arrive at a conclusion that a motivated intelligence is the causal agent.

I am somewhat amazed that atheists quickly stops at the science portion and do not philosophy about the beauty of science, in all its splendour - from atoms to consciousness.  Does this appreciation not at least push you towards some creator?  The ‘what does a creator imply?’ is the next set of questions.  A true atheist then cannot believe in a non-creator, only that it does not care to speculate further, not withstanding the “awesomeness"factor… is this an accurate deduction?

It is a legitimate question. 

What is overlooked by Theists is the fact that *creation* of new things in the universe is an ongoing process and is happening all the time. The BIG difference is that what we do observe is always mathematical in essence. No miracles, ever, unless they are mathematically permissible.

But make no mistake. The universe and how it functions is being studied much more by Science than by Theists.

The extraordinary claim “God did it”  is never accompanied by the properties of God and how He managed to do it.

  As atheist myself, I have no problem with the word God as a pre-creation condition. After all Science is looking for a TOE (theory of everything), but regardless of what name we give this condition, it MUST follow mathematical laws.
My greatest objection is that God has been given human properties, such as “He saw it was good”, “the wrath of God”, “God loves you”, which are philosophical teachings, but have little in common with the physical or mathematical sciences of how things work in reality.  To me this smacks of ego-centric hubris on the part of the believer.

This creates a contradiction, because to me, God is just an implacable mathematical imperative, without emotion or deliberate action outside the realm of mathematical functions. There are no miracles, there are only probabilities based on mathematical properties and functions.

In the spirit of goodwill I am spending time to give you my main objection to the concept of God as a self-aware and motivated being which existed before we can say with any certainty that there was life (intelligent organism) before there was life.  I could agree with the claim that a pre-universe condition was causal to the creation of the universe, but at no time did he claim a self-aware being.

David Bohm, an eminent physicist proposed a hierarchy of mathematical orders from the very subtle to gross expression in our universe.  He used the term “insight intelligence” which IMO is a metaphor for “inherently mathematical” potential.  Somewhat similar to the expression “the body politic”, which of course is not an intelligent organism, but the description of an existing system.

His book, *Wholeness and the Implicate Order* describes this process in both narrative form as well as scientific proofs.  Of interest also is the DeBroglie - Bohm universal “Pilot-Wave” theory.

One can look at mathematical functions and observe creative patterns formed by these mathematical functions. But God does not (cannot) speak any human language. When a person claims, “God spoke to me” is a purely imaginary scenario.
The problem with scripture is that the metaphorical narratives are not mathematically sound and impossible and therefore must be disqualified from consideration as scientific arguments.

However, the mathematical function itself may often appear as *intelligent*, but it would be similar to a computer which is able to produce logical results from the data that it receives.  It is a quasi intelligent machine.

And so is the universe.  The beautiful and truly awesome powers and mathematical imperatives of energetic and physical interactions gives the appearance of intelligence, but these are not Intentional in essence. 

Thus the question is not if creation requires a motivated intelligence, but may well emerge from mathematical imperatives.
IMO, the answer to the second proposition is YES.

Please take a few minutes to view the following links and hopefully this may offer a different perspective on the concept of mathematically creative function, rather than intelligent design by a self-aware and motivated (emotional) supernatural being.

Have you ever seen the complexity of the number 4/3? I am sure you know it equals 1.333333…, but 3/4 can also be expressed as a complex structure? Let’s start with that one.
http://www.ted.com/talks/roger_antonsen_math_is_the_hidden_secret_to_understanding_the_world?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOtAFiI39_I

http://www.theosophy-nw.org/theosnw/science/prat-boh.htm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlAQLgTwJ_A  (start watching @ 25:00)

I really hope you will take the time to watch and read the contents of these links, as IMO, they offer invaluable information for the interested layman, to get a grasp of the mathematical functions which may yield the most amazing results all by themselves.

[ Edited: 05 December 2016 08:55 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 06 December 2016 09:06 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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peter.berry - 05 December 2016 04:10 PM

For me the question of an intelligent creator is something of interest.  We are indeed just star dust that came together with very precise forces and chemistry and evolutionary tricks.  Don’t forget the consciousness bit.  If we want to define this as the spaghetti-jelly monster that is fine.  All this is for me still pretty awesome.  Most probably there is life abundantly over the universe.  And photons might look different elsewhere.  But none of this contradicts with the intelligent creator theory.  I am not too concerned about the further question of the creator’s, creator, and its creator, I think we have enough on our plates for now.  The theory of the “we are the God”, for me also falls in the creator theory.

I am somewhat amazed that atheists quickly stops at the science portion and do not philosophy about the beauty of science, in all its splendour - from atoms to consciousness.  Does this appreciation not at least push you towards some creator?  The ‘what does a creator imply?’ is the next set of questions.  A true atheist then cannot believe in a non-creator, only that it does not care to speculate further, not withstanding the “awesomeness"factor… is this an accurate deduction?

 

I cannot get a handle on your complete thought here. What the hell is a “non-creator”? OK, I agree you are looking for answers as we all are or were. Myself I first looked at past history. And the first question was;
 
Q. Did life begin on earth?
 
A. We don’t know.
 
We do know that all things including earth are made of matter. And matter is still falling on earth all the time. Matter could have brought life with it to earth. And it could have been more than single cells. For example tardigrades could have come to us from outer space.
 
https://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2015/11/27/the-weird-genome-of-water-bears-tardigrades-more-than-a-sixth-of-it-was-swiped-from-distantly-related-species/
 
It is looking like all living organisms share a beginning ancestry. And it seem a little confusing when things like fungi (mushrooms) have now been revealed as being closer to animals like humans than to other plants like lettuce.
 
Then pre-history tells us that man came to the conclusion that the universe was made from matter and the earth was also made from this matter. Next they said that how the universe came to be, mankind may never know. Therefore one should come to the conclusion that mankind will not be able to answer all questions at this time.
 
Today we have the big bang theory. And a rough timeline for that. We have life on earth and a timeline for that.
 
Now we are at the point I want to get at, “Intelligent creator”. What does that mean? So, the next thing I would look at is “intelligent” the same thing as “knowledge”. That is the my question to you.

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