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Ask a Christian
Posted: 24 August 2010 06:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1021 ]
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kengen - 23 August 2010 09:19 PM
DarronS - 23 August 2010 07:41 PM

Kengen, I understand teleology. I asked you to explain “irreducible teleology.” You are talking in circles. Rationality does not need teleology, therefore the logic you cited to refute rationality is flawed.

My apologies.  I was trying to do two things at once (complete a work deadline also) and I missed the “irreducible” part.  The irreducible part of it would refer to that part of “purpose” or intended meaning or outcome that cannot be reduced to efficient or natural cause. 

But what part of what I said in the above argument is talking in circles?  And secondly, your statement “Rationality does not need teleology, therefore the logic you cited to refute rationality is flawed”  is a non-starter.  It’s kind of like saying, “what you argued is invalid, therefore it is wrong.”  That’s the whole point of presenting a logical argument.  If you would like to refute it please do so, but give some argument here, not just an assertion of your opinion.

I understand now, you are using “irreducible teleology” in the same sense that Michael Behe used “Irreducible Complexity,” and you are just as wrong. Let us examine this logic:

(1) If naturalism is true, there is no irreducible teleology.
(2) Rational deliberation exhibits irreducible teleology.
(3) Therefore, naturalism is false.

(1) There is no need for the word “irreducible” here. Teleology means something was created with a purpose. The word “irreducible” adds nothing to the discussion; indeed using the term obscures your meaning. Still, I will grant that “If naturalism is true there is no teleology.”
(2) This is where your logic breaks down. Rational deliberation is irrelevant to natural causes: it is the means we employ to discuss how and why the Universe exists in its present form, but in the overall scheme of things our deliberations have no effect on the Universe. Introducing this is a red herring.
(3) Therefore, your third statement is unjustified. What you are saying is “Our deliberations have a purpose, therefore naturalism is false,” which equals “Our deliberations have a purpose, therefore the Universe also has a purpose.”

Your argument fails.

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Posted: 24 August 2010 06:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1022 ]
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Since the universe was very hot in the beginning, would it not also be bright? Was it completely dark until the appearance of the first stars?

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Posted: 24 August 2010 03:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1023 ]
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George - 24 August 2010 06:25 AM

Since the universe was very hot in the beginning, would it not also be bright? Was it completely dark until the appearance of the first stars?

The point was that plants came on day N and the sun & moon on day N+1, which doesn’t seem quite right—the sun preceded plants.(!)

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Posted: 24 August 2010 04:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1024 ]
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Jackson - 24 August 2010 03:36 PM
George - 24 August 2010 06:25 AM

Since the universe was very hot in the beginning, would it not also be bright? Was it completely dark until the appearance of the first stars?

The point was that plants came on day N and the sun & moon on day N+1, which doesn’t seem quite right—the sun preceded plants.(!)

George, what he is saying is that it was waayy too hot for the plants ‘In The Beginning’!
Yes, on reflection tongue wink (again..I’m not a physicist…nor do I play one on any forums. cheese ), I could see how there would be light.

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Posted: 24 August 2010 04:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1025 ]
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Yes, I know, Jackson, the science in the Bible is all over the place. Nevertheless, the light prior to the stars, hmm….

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Posted: 24 August 2010 05:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1026 ]
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You’re right, George.  The hotter a material is, the higher the frequency it radiates so it would seem that there would be a great deal of photonic radiation, but maybe in the x-ray range rather than visible.  On second thought, and DarronS would be far, far more capable of answering this,  since that may have been before matter (protons, nuetrons, etc.) formed, I don’t know what effect that would have for photonic energy.

Occam

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Posted: 25 August 2010 07:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1027 ]
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Regarding light existing before the sun, the answer is simply that there was a source of light before the sun.  This is the standard answer and given that if one is working within the framework of the theistic worldview doesn’t seem so difficult.  Beyond this, some speculate this light being divine light from God Himself, or an initial natural primeval light from the initial conditions from which the earth and universe were birthed so to speak.

I have a question concerning the respective value to humanity of any given worldview/foundation, such as theism, naturalism, secularism, etc…

I would like a Christian’s response to the following circumstances…

Let us say it has been scientifically and unassailably established that a very large mass of asteroids have been observed by astronomers to be headed on a collision course with our solar system. That the speed and trajectory had been computed and verified to inform us that this mass of asteroids would begin to enter our solar system in 150 years and that their mass and path width was sufficient to utterly destroy/subsume all planets in our system, including earth, in less than 6 months.

What would the christians response to this disturbing set of circumstances be?

But let’s ratchet this up a notch…let’s say 1 year after this troubling news has been confirmed to be true, a group of world renowned scientists have managed a possible solution that would ensure the survival of at least some of humanity. The plan is to build a large mothership in earths orbit and allow a select group of humans to abandon earth in search of a new home, in the hope of saving our species from total extinction. However, the only way to secure this plan is if every working person on the planet agreed to participate in the funding, construction and launching of this deep space vessel. It was also determined that such a vessel would require a 75 year head start to evade the path of this on coming mass of asteroids. So, basically, many of us would witness the departure of this ship, if we all participated in its construction and preparation. The participation would necessitate every person agreeing to a tax of half their net income, after all other taxes, till the ship was complete…some 70 years in the future.

What would the classical theistic response be, to this plan?

What would a Billy Graham or John Hagee or Jimmy Swaggert or Ernest Ainsley or Catholic Pope say to their flock?

[ Edited: 25 August 2010 07:46 AM by whynot ]
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Posted: 25 August 2010 08:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1028 ]
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whynot - 25 August 2010 07:41 AM

Regarding light existing before the sun, the answer is simply that there was a source of light before the sun.  This is the standard answer and given that if one is working within the framework of the theistic worldview doesn’t seem so difficult.  Beyond this, some speculate this light being divine light from God Himself, or an initial natural primeval light from the initial conditions from which the earth and universe were birthed so to speak.

I have a question concerning the respective value to humanity of any given worldview/foundation, such as theism, naturalism, secularism, etc…

I would like a Christian’s response to the following circumstances…

Let us say it has been scientifically and unassailably established that a very large mass of asteroids have been observed by astronomers to be headed on a collision course with our solar system. That the speed and trajectory had been computed and verified to inform us that this mass of asteroids would begin to enter our solar system in 150 years and that their mass and path width was sufficient to utterly destroy/subsume all planets in our system, including earth, in less than 6 months.

What would the christians response to this disturbing set of circumstances be?

But let’s ratchet this up a notch…let’s say 1 year after this troubling news has been confirmed to be true, a group of world renowned scientists have managed a possible solution that would ensure the survival of at least some of humanity. The plan is to build a large mothership in earths orbit and allow a select group of humans to abandon earth in search of a new home, in the hope of saving our species from total extinction. However, the only way to secure this plan is if every working person on the planet agreed to participate in the funding, construction and launching of this deep space vessel. It was also determined that such a vessel would require a 75 year head start to evade the path of this on coming mass of asteroids. So, basically, many of us would witness the departure of this ship, if we all participated in its construction and preparation. The participation would necessitate every person agreeing to a tax of half their net income, after all other taxes, till the ship was complete…some 70 years in the future.

What would the classical theistic response be, to this plan?

What would a Billy Graham or John Hagee or Jimmy Swaggert or Ernest Ainsley or Catholic Pope say to their flock?

I’m not a Christian however it’s rather easy to see that this would fit well into the pseudo prediction of the Rapture. However the scary thing is they might try to manipulate things to ensure only Christians get onboard.

Make it a self-filling prophecy and the Christians will be able to decide they were right all along.

All one of these leaders would need is a divine vision. It’s not “Christianity” that is a problem. The idea of Jesus Christ is used to give religious leaders authority they need to manipulate the masses. The “Flocks” are led by religious leaders. Not the Bible or anything Jesus taught.

Religion, Politics, Science - Humanism are tools used by leaders to manipulate groups of people. An interesting book I think would be one that looks at the circumstances surrounding how some of the well know leaders of the world become leaders. Is there some pattern there? A commonality of circumstances that equip an individual with a set of skills to become a powerful leader?

Obviously a leader doesn’t have to be the smartest or brightest kid on the block. However something about their personality makes others listen to what they have to say.

By the way, I apologize in advance for derailing your original question. I tend to wonder off onto tangents which interest me.

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Posted: 25 August 2010 04:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1029 ]
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Occam. - 24 August 2010 05:25 PM

You’re right, George.  The hotter a material is, the higher the frequency it radiates so it would seem that there would be a great deal of photonic radiation, but maybe in the x-ray range rather than visible.  On second thought, and DarronS would be far, far more capable of answering this,  since that may have been before matter (protons, nuetrons, etc.) formed, I don’t know what effect that would have for photonic energy.

Occam

This gets a bit confusing without some study, but basically radiation dominated the very early Universe. Everything we can see was created through photons interacting at extremely high energies and combining to form particles. This occurred in the first 100 seconds after the Big Bang. For the first few thousand years after the Big Bang radiation dominated the Universe. All matter was bathed in gamma rays left over from the Big Bang. The Cosmic Background Microwave Radiation dates from about 380,000 years post Big Bang, and still emits about 10 times the energy that all the stars in the Universe combined emit. Things were still pretty darn hot then. Phoenix, AZ has nothing on that epoch. The early Universe was so hot that atoms could not hold together until 200 million years after the Big Bang. Stars and galaxies began forming then, but don’t forget at cosmic scales the gravity dance takes a long time to form large structures. The first era of galaxy formation lasted until 3 billion years post Big Bang.

None of this refutes the Biblical account of the creation of the Universe. Of course if you make something vague enough it can apply to almost anything. The early Universe was awash in gamma rays. Not only can we not see gamma rays, they are immediately fatal to all known forms of life.

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Posted: 25 August 2010 05:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1030 ]
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Quoting Darron:

Not only can we not see gamma rays, they are immediately fatal to all known forms of life.

  Aha, now we know what happened.  A god created the universe, but then got radiated with an extremely high level of gamma rays which killled him/her.  So, even allowing the theist initial story to be true, atheism is now the correct belief.  smile

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Posted: 25 August 2010 06:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1031 ]
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DarronS - 25 August 2010 04:44 PM
Occam. - 24 August 2010 05:25 PM

You’re right, George.  The hotter a material is, the higher the frequency it radiates so it would seem that there would be a great deal of photonic radiation, but maybe in the x-ray range rather than visible.  On second thought, and DarronS would be far, far more capable of answering this,  since that may have been before matter (protons, nuetrons, etc.) formed, I don’t know what effect that would have for photonic energy.

Occam

This gets a bit confusing without some study, but basically radiation dominated the very early Universe. Everything we can see was created through photons interacting at extremely high energies and combining to form particles. This occurred in the first 100 seconds after the Big Bang. For the first few thousand years after the Big Bang radiation dominated the Universe. All matter was bathed in gamma rays left over from the Big Bang. The Cosmic Background Microwave Radiation dates from about 380,000 years post Big Bang, and still emits about 10 times the energy that all the stars in the Universe combined emit. Things were still pretty darn hot then. Phoenix, AZ has nothing on that epoch. The early Universe was so hot that atoms could not hold together until 200 million years after the Big Bang. Stars and galaxies began forming then, but don’t forget at cosmic scales the gravity dance takes a long time to form large structures. The first era of galaxy formation lasted until 3 billion years post Big Bang.

None of this refutes the Biblical account of the creation of the Universe. Of course if you make something vague enough it can apply to almost anything. The early Universe was awash in gamma rays. Not only can we not see gamma rays, they are immediately fatal to all known forms of life.

So was it dark?  long face

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Posted: 25 August 2010 07:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1032 ]
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George - 25 August 2010 06:50 PM

So was it dark?  long face

There was no visible light in the early Universe. Humans have very limited eyesight, so to us it would have been dark.

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Posted: 26 August 2010 02:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1033 ]
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Jackson - 16 August 2010 04:58 PM

On the Third Day God created plants

On the Fourth Day God created the Sun and the Moon…

So what is the correct way to literally understand these first few lines—how can we have evening/morning and the end of the 1st/2nd/3rd day without the Sun… how do people think about this…

Jackson

This order sort of shows that the early thinking that the Earth was the center of the universe/solar system, so that it made sense to the writer for there to be plants on the Earth before there was a Sun.

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Posted: 26 August 2010 03:18 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1034 ]
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Let me ask something: Why is it that you expect the bible to contain a scientifically accurate account of the beginnings of the universe? That seems like a category error to me.

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Posted: 26 August 2010 10:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1035 ]
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I don’t think we really expect that.  The problem is that quite a few of the less educated, more fundamentalist religious do believe the bible is the inerrant, precise, and accurate word of god.  Since they persist in attempting to use this basis for discussion and press for it to be public ideas and behavior, the secular have to marshall arguments against it.  The more familiar we are with those ideas and the more flaws we find the more effective we can be at debunking them. 

I realize, I-F, that there are many intelligent, knowledgeable theists, however, it’s those who buy the Pat Robertson stories such as the satanic halloween candy (see thread) that these posts are based on.

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