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the two category fallacy-theistic evolution debunked
Posted: 18 May 2011 09:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]
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The problem with the phrase “theistic evolution” is its suggestion that evolution (and implicitly the even narrower subject of biological evolution) is the determining factor of the philosophy it purports to name. A better name would be something like “theistic factualism”. Evolution is a fact, not a philosophy. You complain that it’s not enough to accept evolution merely on the basis of the evidence. But not only is a vast body of evidence like the fossil record quite sufficient for belief, it is paramount. The ideas that there is an absolute truth, and that what is proven to have happened actually happened, make sense only in the context of a deity, as illustrated (albeit not half willingly) by Descartes. And the existence of physical and mathematical laws begs the question of some authority that ordains them.

The so-called “new atheists” are not actually atheists. This is evident in the occasional unguarded phrase such as “Thank Darwin”. A real atheist would say “Thank Nothing”. And more concretely, it is laid out in Richard Dawkins’ pseudoscience of memes. He says that religion caused 9-11. No, it didn’t. People did. People organized so as to create the illusion of divine authority, but people nonetheless. By failing to indict severally the people involved in such atrocities, Dawkins is caving in to their claim of power. Beneath its sophisticated wording, meme theory is simply the quest to protect a mythical bridgit of “reason” from a mythical pandemonium of spiritual interests.

Religion used to say that God set the earth fixed at the center of the universe. Kepler proved, based on evidence, that the earth actually orbits the sun, and Galileo publicized this fact. Religion now says that God set the earth in orbit around the sun. You might say that’s cheating, but you’d be just as wrong as when religionists make the same accusation about science.

Karl Popper’s claim that there is no such thing as scientific deduction is absurd. Kepler did, indeed, deduce that the earth orbits the sun. And it is this type of deduction from hard evidence, au Arthur Conan Doyle, that characterizes science, not some idealized “scientific method”. It is the theistic position that discoveries like Kepler’s Laws are the real divine revelations because they fit the real evidence, notwithstanding however many millions of religionists condemning them.

You use the arrow of time as an argument against theisticism. However, by doing this, you are using faith, because in a literal reading of testable physics, there isn’t any arrow of time. Theistics simply say that in the fullness of time and space it was inevitable that some type of being with an intelligent soul would develop. This is like saying it is inevitable that an endless series of coin tosses will eventually turn up heads 50 times in a row. It posits only that a state is available to be stumbled upon, not that there is any plan to arrive at it. Asked why God would create beings as inefficient as humans, a true theistic doesn’t claim to know or care. If you’ve been asking this to people who even tried to answer, you’ve been asking the wrong people.

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Posted: 18 May 2011 11:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]
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The so-called “new atheists” are not actually atheists. This is evident in the occasional unguarded phrase such as “Thank Darwin”. A real atheist would say “Thank Nothing”.

You might want to read up on the “No True Scotsman” fallacy.

While you’re at it, you need to be aware that atheism is a lack of belief in any god or gods.

Darwin is not a god, never pretended to be, and nobody has made him out to be one.

More to the point, we know at one point in history, we know that he existed. The same cannot be said for any deity you care to name.

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Question authority and think for yourself. Big Brother does not know best and never has.

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Posted: 19 May 2011 03:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]
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Collin237 - 18 May 2011 09:47 PM

The problem with the phrase “theistic evolution” is its suggestion that evolution (and implicitly the even narrower subject of biological evolution) is the determining factor of the philosophy it purports to name. A better name would be something like “theistic factualism”. Evolution is a fact, not a philosophy. You complain that it’s not enough to accept evolution merely on the basis of the evidence. But not only is a vast body of evidence like the fossil record quite sufficient for belief, it is paramount. The ideas that there is an absolute truth, and that what is proven to have happened actually happened, make sense only in the context of a deity, as illustrated (albeit not half willingly) by Descartes. And the existence of physical and mathematical laws begs the question of some authority that ordains them.

The so-called “new atheists” are not actually atheists. This is evident in the occasional unguarded phrase such as “Thank Darwin”. A real atheist would say “Thank Nothing”. And more concretely, it is laid out in Richard Dawkins’ pseudoscience of memes. He says that religion caused 9-11. No, it didn’t. People did. People organized so as to create the illusion of divine authority, but people nonetheless. By failing to indict severally the people involved in such atrocities, Dawkins is caving in to their claim of power. Beneath its sophisticated wording, meme theory is simply the quest to protect a mythical bridgit of “reason” from a mythical pandemonium of spiritual interests.

Religion used to say that God set the earth fixed at the center of the universe. Kepler proved, based on evidence, that the earth actually orbits the sun, and Galileo publicized this fact. Religion now says that God set the earth in orbit around the sun. You might say that’s cheating, but you’d be just as wrong as when religionists make the same accusation about science.

Karl Popper’s claim that there is no such thing as scientific deduction is absurd. Kepler did, indeed, deduce that the earth orbits the sun. And it is this type of deduction from hard evidence, au Arthur Conan Doyle, that characterizes science, not some idealized “scientific method”. It is the theistic position that discoveries like Kepler’s Laws are the real divine revelations because they fit the real evidence, notwithstanding however many millions of religionists condemning them.

You use the arrow of time as an argument against theisticism. However, by doing this, you are using faith, because in a literal reading of testable physics, there isn’t any arrow of time. Theistics simply say that in the fullness of time and space it was inevitable that some type of being with an intelligent soul would develop. This is like saying it is inevitable that an endless series of coin tosses will eventually turn up heads 50 times in a row. It posits only that a state is available to be stumbled upon, not that there is any plan to arrive at it. Asked why God would create beings as inefficient as humans, a true theistic doesn’t claim to know or care. If you’ve been asking this to people who even tried to answer, you’ve been asking the wrong people.

Collin, welcome. You’ve written an excellent first post.

My only quibble is with the language I bolded. Religion doesn’t “say” anything. People who advance various kinds of religions say things, as Kepler and Galileo said things about science.

I’ve called this point a quibble but it really isn’t. Not all religions made the claim that “God set the earth fixed at the center of the universe.” In fact, not all religions propose the existence of a god. If you read some of my recent posts on other topics, you’ll see that I’ve taken a very strong position on the importance of distinguishing between religion and theism. There are overlaps but they are not the same thing.

All the same, welcome to the forum.

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I cannot in good conscience support CFI under the current leadership. I am here in dissent and in support of a Humanism that honors and respects everyone.

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