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Do atheists believe in some intelligent entity?
Posted: 20 December 2016 04:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 46 ]
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CuthbertJ - 20 December 2016 11:42 AM
Write4U - 11 December 2016 03:31 PM

Mike Yohe said: Is this correct? To demystify one could say math is use to describe the paradigm of creation.

  Yep,  Creation was a mathematical event and as we all can testify to a creative event, scientifically we end up with an equation based on pure energy, infinite potential, implied probabilities, mathematical functions, A spontaneous mathematical event.

“Wholeness and the Implicate Order”. I can visualize that as an abstract dynamical condition or Potential, emergent patterns naturally associated in a concept of Wholeness.

In understanding the properties of a Wholeness lies the path to Empathy, the ultimate form of *human understanding*..

I use to believe pretty much the same thing as you until I learned that the same mathematics that cosmologists and physicists use to describe the universe are also used to describe earthly economics. (Not everything of course, but many concepts). It really took the wind out of my sails because like you I’d always thought there was something inherent in math that actually linked it to the universe. Then I saw (but can’t say I understood) the same math of physics being used to decribe “economic systems”, “flow of products”, etc. and economists using the same basic language to describe ordinary, i.e. mundane, economics.

Oh, I think you are looking at this the wrong way.  IMO, it is truly amazing that everything can be translated mathematically.
It proves that everything IS linked to the universe, not in some magical extraordinary ability of humans.  It is ALL mathematical and when you think about it, it is the single common denominator in the universe (and may even be causal to the universe itself).

The beauty of mathematics lies in the fact that it is a form of communication without needing a brain.  H2O is a mathematical construct based on the potential inherent in the properties of Hydrogen and Oxygen. No *water maker* is required. When there is an abundance of Hydrogen and Oxygen, there will be water. There is a natural mathematical affinity between the two atoms, because of their inherent properties and potentials.

Wherever we look we see mathematics, even as some may be probabilistic, needing time to express itself as in the formation of a spiral galaxy which may take millions of years to form. But when that Galaxy is formed we can clearly see the Fibonacci sequence. And this very same mathematical formation can be observed in Daisies, Sunflowers, Pinecones and in everything that has a spiral form. There was no *spiral maker*

Rather than mundane, IMO, it is astounding that these mathematical functions are so constant in their results. As Tegmark says: “the universe does not have some mathematical properties, it has ONLY mathematical properties”.

All things function mathematically, but as far as we know, only humans can learn and understand them, but All physical things and other life forms share in the universal mathematical functions, some with a high degree of sophistication such as navigation by the earth’s magnetic fields, the position of the sun, sonar, sound waves, pheromones, atmospheric pressure, etc.

But proof of the implacable mathematical function can be found even in the brainless Slime-Mold, which can solve a maze to find food. It (unwittingly) uses subtraction to solve the maze.

IMO, this solves the problem of trying to imagine some magical “motivated”. intelligent Creator.  It’s ALL mathematical! We just don’t know all the mathematics, yet.

[ Edited: 02 January 2017 07:12 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 27 December 2016 12:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 47 ]
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CuthbertJ - 20 December 2016 11:42 AM
Write4U - 11 December 2016 03:31 PM

Mike Yohe said: Is this correct? To demystify one could say math is use to describe the paradigm of creation.

  Yep,  Creation was a mathematical event and as we all can testify to a creative event, scientifically we end up with an equation based on pure energy, infinite potential, implied probabilities, mathematical functions, A spontaneous mathematical event.

“Wholeness and the Implicate Order”. I can visualize that as an abstract dynamical condition or Potential, emergent patterns naturally associated in a concept of Wholeness.

In understanding the properties of a Wholeness lies the path to Empathy, the ultimate form of *human understanding*..

I use to believe pretty much the same thing as you until I learned that the same mathematics that cosmologists and physicists use to describe the universe are also used to describe earthly economics. (Not everything of course, but many concepts). It really took the wind out of my sails because like you I’d always thought there was something inherent in math that actually linked it to the universe. Then I saw (but can’t say I understood) the same math of physics being used to decribe “economic systems”, “flow of products”, etc. and economists using the same basic language to describe ordinary, i.e. mundane, economics.


You have touched on the crux of the matter. Everything can be equated in mathematical language. Even choreographers use a mathematical language to “script” tap-dance steps and movements.  Music (sound waves) can be “understood” and quantified.  The number 4/3 can be equated and represented as a 3D shape. http://www.ted.com/talks/roger_antonsen_math_is_the_hidden_secret_to_understanding_the_world?

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Posted: 02 July 2017 03:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 48 ]
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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?

Judging from this forum, atheists barely agree about anything but most still get along fine. They can even get along with “believers” as long as they avoid certain topics, so both of the above questions raise the issue of why do either of questions matter? Does “believing” or “not believing” really provide a basis for any fundamental difference between us or the ways we behave? That’s what really matters, isn’t it? So what do such beliefs mean to anyone but ourselves?
It seems as though some people are content to acknowledge they just don’t know, shrug it off and get on with their lives anyway (on many topics). Others seem to need an answer to believe in - and some even seem to look for outlandish answers, even if they defy what most people regard as facts. That’s fine too - as long as they respect my beliefs. It helps if they at least understand that some things just can’t be explained rationally and recognize that a valid reason is our ignorance -
we just don’t have sufficient knowledge to explain them.
Instead of insisting that there was a beginning, a plan, a purpose, or guidance, probably based upon an inability to accept that it could be any other way, it is again possible to accept that we just don’t know and carry on our lives ignorant of answers that others seem to insist must be provided. To at least some atheists, it just doesn’t matter. We would conduct our lives in exactly the same way if we believed what others seem to want us to believe.
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Posted: 02 July 2017 04:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 49 ]
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DarronS - 08 December 2016 10:00 AM

Scientists stick to reality even when they’re trying to figure out things we do not yet know. Their hypotheses must fit the math. With few exceptions when scientists discuss a creator they do so only to refute the idea.

Um, their math suggested the universe should be collapsing, not expanding at ever accelerating rates.  Rather than propose that their math just might be radically wrong, they’ve invented “dark matter” a supposedly highly prevalent substance which is just as unobservable and invisible as any god.  But anyway…

Refuting a creator is not “sticking to reality”.  The reality is that no one could possibly know whether there is something the scale of gods or not. Sticking to reality on this subject can be accomplished with three simple words….

“I don’t know”.

Atheist ideologues are not using reason.  They are instead expressing a different flavor of faith.  Which is their right of course.  But once they start debunking the faiths of others, they’d best be prepared to have their own faith ripped to shreds as well.  That’s how reason works, nothing and nobody is immune.

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Posted: 02 July 2017 05:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 50 ]
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JohnH - 02 July 2017 03:04 PM
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?

Judging from this forum, atheists barely agree about anything but most still get along fine. They can even get along with “believers” as long as they avoid certain topics, so both of the above questions raise the issue of why do either of questions matter? Does “believing” or “not believing” really provide a basis for any fundamental difference between us or the ways we behave? That’s what really matters, isn’t it? So what do such beliefs mean to anyone but ourselves?
It seems as though some people are content to acknowledge they just don’t know, shrug it off and get on with their lives anyway (on many topics). Others seem to need an answer to believe in - and some even seem to look for outlandish answers, even if they defy what most people regard as facts. That’s fine too - as long as they respect my beliefs. It helps if they at least understand that some things just can’t be explained rationally and recognize that a valid reason is our ignorance -
we just don’t have sufficient knowledge to explain them.
Instead of insisting that there was a beginning, a plan, a purpose, or guidance, probably based upon an inability to accept that it could be any other way, it is again possible to accept that we just don’t know and carry on our lives ignorant of answers that others seem to insist must be provided. To at least some atheists, it just doesn’t matter. We would conduct our lives in exactly the same way if we believed what others seem to want us to believe.

You are right and that is why the subject of religion or spirituality is seldom (if ever) introduced by atheists. We get along very well with religious people, as long as they don’t try to proselytise.

As to the OP question, would you call mathematical functions as a form of quasi-intelligence?  Computers function by mathematical functions and they are capable of doing amazing things, such as modeling ifelikebehaiors..

[ Edited: 02 July 2017 06:14 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 03 July 2017 05:37 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 51 ]
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Tanny - 02 July 2017 04:29 PM
DarronS - 08 December 2016 10:00 AM

Scientists stick to reality even when they’re trying to figure out things we do not yet know. Their hypotheses must fit the math. With few exceptions when scientists discuss a creator they do so only to refute the idea.

Um, their math suggested the universe should be collapsing, not expanding at ever accelerating rates.  Rather than propose that their math just might be radically wrong, they’ve invented “dark matter” a supposedly highly prevalent substance which is just as unobservable and invisible as any god.  But anyway…

Refuting a creator is not “sticking to reality”.  The reality is that no one could possibly know whether there is something the scale of gods or not. Sticking to reality on this subject can be accomplished with three simple words….

“I don’t know”.

Atheist ideologues are not using reason.  They are instead expressing a different flavor of faith.  Which is their right of course.  But once they start debunking the faiths of others, they’d best be prepared to have their own faith ripped to shreds as well.  That’s how reason works, nothing and nobody is immune.

You are a hard one to figure Tanny. We agree on some important points, but sometimes your logic just isn’t logical. What do you think cosmologists do all day? Do they come up with something like “dark matter”, then just sit back and admire their brilliance? Do they make YouTube videos defending it? No, that would be what apologists do. And when they find something that is invisible, yet can be determined to be there because we can see it’s effect, do they label it god? No, because then just about anything could be labeled god, and there would be no reason to keep learning.

Faith is believing without sufficient evidence. Science is choosing some basics premises because we know we don’t know and building on them, questioning everything, including the basic premises. It’s never claiming you are “right” or that you know everything. Exactly what about the tools of science can you “rip to shreds”?

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Posted: 03 July 2017 06:01 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 52 ]
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Lausten - 03 July 2017 05:37 AM

You are a hard one to figure Tanny.

Thank you!  The job of any poster is to try to add something to the conversation that’s not already there. 

What do you think cosmologists do all day? Do they come up with something like “dark matter”, then just sit back and admire their brilliance? Do they make YouTube videos defending it? No, that would be what apologists do. And when they find something that is invisible, yet can be determined to be there because we can see it’s effect, do they label it god? No, because then just about anything could be labeled god, and there would be no reason to keep learning.

God = Invisible and unproven
Dark Matter = Invisible and unproven

The reasoning is the same in both cases.  Something happened, we can’t explain it, thus it must be caused by something invisible and unproven.  And then each party loudly claims their invisible and unproven thingy to be vastly superior to the other guy’s invisible and unproven thingy.

You say there’s a God?  Show it to me.
You say there’s dark matter?  Show it to me.
Can’t show it to me?  I decline to believe.

Exactly what about the tools of science can you “rip to shreds”?

Please note I made no such claim.  What I actually did say is…

But once they start debunking the faiths of others, they’d best be prepared to have their own faith ripped to shreds as well. 

Want to see the foundational of science faith ripped to shreds?  See link in sig.

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Posted: 03 July 2017 07:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 53 ]
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Tanny - 03 July 2017 06:01 AM

You say there’s a God?  Show it to me.
You say there’s dark matter?  Show it to me.
Can’t show it to me?  I decline to believe.

As you well know I’ve been following that other thread and pointing out how you have demonstrated nothing, except that our priorities need tuning, major tuning.

And I explained what is wrong with the above logic. By weighing the universe, they figured out they were missing something. They didn’t immediately declare that it was a highly intelligent or supernatural being or force that had a plan for us and cared about our reproductive habits. They gave it a name and started trying to figure out what it was. They didn’t ask anyone to believe in anything other than the data and evidence. They assembled that first, then drew what conclusions they could. They showed that to others and respected their opinions and expertise and discussed possible conclusions further. That doesn’t sound like anything a religion does or like someone who has made a leap of faith.

The “can’t show me, I don’t believe it, must be god” logic does sound like you however. You present your ideas like they are golden, then get upset when they are questioned. That we agree on some things is more coincidence at this point, unless you start showing your work more and having that work look something like logical.

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Posted: 03 July 2017 08:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 54 ]
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Lausten - 03 July 2017 07:35 AM

You present your ideas like they are golden, then get upset when they are questioned.

Not upset.  Bored. 

Here’s a friendly challenge.  Start a new thread that’s all about you and me. We can get as in to it as you want.  Say whatever you want, that’s fine, no problem, get it off your chest and out of your system.

And then in all the other threads we share together, address the post instead of the poster.  Address the ideas instead of the people.

Or, if that sounds like too much bother, I can just add you to my ignore list. 

I’m agreeable either way.

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Posted: 03 July 2017 09:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 55 ]
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Tanny - 03 July 2017 08:04 AM
Lausten - 03 July 2017 07:35 AM

You present your ideas like they are golden, then get upset when they are questioned.

Not upset.  Bored. 

Here’s a friendly challenge.  Start a new thread that’s all about you and me. We can get as in to it as you want.  Say whatever you want, that’s fine, no problem, get it off your chest and out of your system.

And then in all the other threads we share together, address the post instead of the poster.  Address the ideas instead of the people.

Or, if that sounds like too much bother, I can just add you to my ignore list. 

I’m agreeable either way.

I did address the post. I addressed your logic. You got personal and accused me of being angry. You started it. Na-na-na-na-boo-boo.

And, how you present an argument is just as important as the argument itself. Not addressing a logical point or question but instead just repeating your list of premises and claiming they lead to your conclusion is just as worthy of a comment as the premises and/or conclusion itself.

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Posted: 03 July 2017 10:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 56 ]
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IMO, before anything becomes an orderly system, there must be ordering rules. The rules of the game, so to speak.
We know these rules all have a mathematical aspect to them. This why all systems have a mathematical play-book, before they can become systems emerging from a purely chaotic beginning. Every “language”, including alphabetical languages are expression of formalized mathematics Every form symbolic representation of anything is actually an identification of an assigned value to everything we can logically process with our brains. 

One of the universal “common denominators” of all structural systems is that there had to be an abstract pre-existing mathematical function which allows for these structures to form. We actually call these mathematical functions “universal constants”, meaning they exist in abstract form whether they are expressed in our reality or not. If they are not expressed these mathematical values are called “potential”, when they are expressed where we can observe these functions, we call them “physical realities”, at least in our limited abilities of observation.

At Planck scale these mathematical functions are called “probabilistic”, but again that implies a mathematical function from which our reality emerges.
At that level the mathematical functions are described in QM,  the observation of these mathematical functions is described in GR.

While there are seemingly some contradictions in those two main aspects of universal potentials if taken as separate aspects, these contradictions do not really exist, except for our ability to describe them as a cohesive wholeness by OUR symbolic language of mathematics.

But I am convinced that eventually we will be able to compile and describe all the inherent universal mathematical functions (potentials) into our symbolic language.  At that point, it will explain the abstract rules of the game, which today we identify as God (the abstract referee) or TOE, the actual rules, the abstract play-book itself.

[ Edited: 03 July 2017 11:10 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 03 July 2017 02:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 57 ]
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Tanny - 02 July 2017 04:29 PM
DarronS - 08 December 2016 10:00 AM

Scientists stick to reality even when they’re trying to figure out things we do not yet know. Their hypotheses must fit the math. With few exceptions when scientists discuss a creator they do so only to refute the idea.

Um, their math suggested the universe should be collapsing, not expanding at ever accelerating rates.  Rather than propose that their math just might be radically wrong, they’ve invented “dark matter” a supposedly highly prevalent substance which is just as unobservable and invisible as any god.  But anyway…

Refuting a creator is not “sticking to reality”.  The reality is that no one could possibly know whether there is something the scale of gods or not. Sticking to reality on this subject can be accomplished with three simple words….

“I don’t know”.

Atheist ideologues are not using reason.  They are instead expressing a different flavor of faith.  Which is their right of course.  But once they start debunking the faiths of others, they’d best be prepared to have their own faith ripped to shreds as well.  That’s how reason works, nothing and nobody is immune.

Atheists don’t have “faith”. You misunderstand atheism. There is nothing to rip to shreds unless you ar talking about our requirement that objective evidence support any claim before we accept it. What do you think a theist could “rip to shreds”. The atheistic position is that there is no evidence for any of the claims of a god or creator. That’s it. What would be “ripped to shreds”? Our lack of belief in unproven claims? How can any lack of belief be “ripped to shreds”? Can your lack of belief in the thousands of gods people have claimed to exist be “ripped to shreds”? Your position on other gods is no different from the atheist position on all gods. Remember, atheists reject the existence of only one more god than you do.

[ Edited: 03 July 2017 02:55 PM by LoisL ]
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Posted: 03 July 2017 02:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 58 ]
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LoisL said,
What do you think a theist could “rip to shreds”.

  Our educational system, which is already attacked by theists, trying to replace evolution with creationism, by reason of “irreducible complexity, which requires a sentient Creator or else could not exist.

To replace curricula of the sciences of evolutionary processes, with divine creationism may not shred, but certainly inhibit our already poor educational system which is still based on knowledge from the 1900’s.

Take calculus. 26% of our graduating students are proficient in mathematics, because our teaching methods haven’t changed, while mathematics can easily be taught to third graders.

You may like this excellent lecture from Ted’s Talks. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V6yixyiJcos

[ Edited: 03 July 2017 03:07 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 03 July 2017 04:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 59 ]
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The differences between God and dark matter are legion. Dark matter is recognized as an unconfirmed convenience that is subject to revision or rejection if it becomes inconsistent with emerging knowledge or if it becomes unnecessary to explain our current knowledge (https://www.space.com/4554-scientists-dark-matter-exist.html). No-one gets seriously abused for questioning dark matter or providing an alternative. Furthermore, a failure to prove something exists is not conclusive evidence that it doesn’t exist. Nor should it be a reason to avoid using it. In fact science philosopher Popper argued that it is impossible to prove a scientific hypothesis. They can only be falsified.
You are free to argue similarly that a failure to prove God exists isn’t proof that he doesn’t exist. An atheist, however would remain of the opinion that a belief in a God offers no intellectual (or any other form of) advantage over not believing in a God. An acknowledgement that dark matter may exists provides intellectual options that can be used to test and or expand our understanding of how things work and use that understanding to accomplish things that we have not previously been able to accomplish (or even imagine that we could accomplish).
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Posted: 05 July 2017 07:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 60 ]
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Tanny - 03 July 2017 06:01 AM

Want to see the foundational of science faith ripped to shreds?  See link in sig.

You actually thought your other topic “ripped to shreds the foundation of science”?  Ha-ha.  Thank you.  That’s the funniest thing I’ve heard all week.  smile

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