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originally posted by: moebius
a reply to: EviLCHiMP
A "creator" is a lazy answer to very hard questions, effectively used to calm simple minds fear of the unknown, and occasionally to supress critical thinking.
Because god did it!
And then there is the issue of who created the creator.
While statistics are extremely valuable, they are also notorious for being a means that people use to make false and misleading arguments.
There are, of course, problems with using statistics as evidence. Let me remind you of a famous saying: "There are three ways to not tell the truth: lies, damned lies, and statistics." What you must do is ask yourself some questions: who did the study that came up with the statistics, what exactly are the statistics measuring, who was asked, how were they asked, and compared with what? If one believes in the truth of statistics (and there are many such), then how does one explain that the same Presidential candidate can be 20 points ahead and 5 points behind his opponent in the polls at the same time? After all, both polls are "statistics". What you must be examine, if you wish to use statistics as evidence, are the above questions.
What do you personally believe you have to gain by believing in a God?
What do you personally believe you have to lose by believing in a God?
What do you personally believe you have to gain by not believing in a God?
What do you personally believe you have to lose by not believing in a God?
To take one example, studies by Andrew Meltzoff and M. Keith Moore show that newborns—less than 24 hours old—can already pick out human faces in their environment and imitate facial expressions. Human minds have evolved in such a way as to render this task automatic and easy for newborns, perhaps because of how important it is for a hyper-social species such as ours to “read” each other’s attention, intentions, desires, and feelings from each others’ faces. Face detection, recognition, and imitation is only one example of the many subsystems of the human mind that appear to develop as a normal part of human maturation—what philosopher Robert McCauley has termed ‘maturationally natural’ cognition. Because these maturationally natural subsystems are a product of biological predispositions and environmental regularities, these systems are largely constant within and across cultures. These subsystems structure human interactions with their environment and subsequent learning and conceptual development. Consequently, they serve to inform and constrain cultural expression, including religious beliefs.
These maturationally natural cognitive subsystems encourage belief in at least one God, by creating a conceptual space that is most readily filled by such a God concept. That is, rather than the idea of a God being hard-wired into our cognitive systems, we are naturally inclined to reason about the world in such a way that a God concept fits like a key in a lock: God sits well with many of our natural intuitions such that belief in a God makes sense of how we conceive of the world and many events in our lives. I do not mean that we reflectively, rationally consider aspects of the world (such as its mere existence, apparent design or purposefulness, apparent coherence, etc.) and conclude that the existence of a God best accounts for these observations, though some people do. Rather, our naturally developing, untutored, conceptual equipment leads us to find the existence of at least one God intuitively attractive even absent any argumentation on the matter.
The primary culprits for our natural receptivity to believe in God appear to be the cognitive subsystems that we use to understand intentional agents, minds, and features of the natural world. From the first few months of life babies distinguish between those objects that move themselves in goal directed ways from all other objects. Before long they begin attributing rudimentary mental states such as goals and desires. On this foundation they build sophisticated understandings of how percepts inform beliefs, which guide the agent to act on desires leading to positive or negative emotional states. These ‘mindreading’ abilities are unparalleled by any other species. Importantly, the system that picks out intentional agents from other objects and things does not require a human body or even a three-dimensional form to be activated. Indeed, even three- and four-year-olds commonly have invisible companions with which they interact and converse, a demonstration of how facile humans are with agent and mind-based reasoning even without the aid of physical bodies, facial expressions, and other material data from which to work. Gods, then, pose no special problems.