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What are Atheists' thought's on Quantum Mechanics?

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posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 04:59 PM
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Originally posted by sykickvision
A thousand years ago, when nearly everything was a mystery and bolts of lightening were seen as actions of an angry deity it was easy for everyone to believe that god was directly responsible for the otherwise inexplicable events. Now, we know better - and anyone making such claims is laughed at.



They didn't know about electrons and protons, then either... or quarks..but we still don't know what quarks are made of? And how they work? Or how the gamma rays that are shot off in lightening storms happen...well I guess the more you know- the more you know that you don't know. Kind of ironic. We still don't know 100% exactly how lightening works, so regardless if you know 1 % of the subject or 99% it still doesn't change the fact that God did it




posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 05:01 PM
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Originally posted by DJW001
reply to post by Student X
 



I understand what you are saying, but the fact remains that deluded deities are still deities. Tibetan Buddhists have a strong shamanic element in their practice that an atheist would be hard-pressed to accept. So hard pressed that the word atheist may be pushed back from the front-line of their persona in favor of the word mystic.


One of the unspoken assumptions that is causing confusion on this thread is that mysticism, consciousness, psychic phenomena, supernatural beings, deities and the "Creator" are all in some way related. They are not. There are atheistic mystics, materialistic paranormal researchers, theistic scientists, and so forth. It is unclear what the OP wants to know, if indeed they are actually asking a question rather than trying to stir up conflict.


I won't leave it unspoken any longer. I will claim that if you were to spend a few years studying comparative mysticism, comparative mythology, comparative religion, and parapsychology in depth that you would see that the things you mention are indeed related. Mysticism is to consciousness as exercise is to muscles. Psychic functioning is to consciousness as brute strength and leverage is to muscles. Supernatural beings are better thought of as archetypes of the collective unconscious in symbolic (poetic) form; they are to consciousness as an iceberg is to the mother sea.

"There is a continuum of cosmic consciousness against which our individuality builds but accidental fences, and into which our several minds plunge as into a mother sea." -William James


edit on 21-1-2011 by Student X because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 05:17 PM
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reply to post by SlyFox_79
 



Originally posted by SlyFox_79
I know that Atheist believe in a material world, one that can be proven through Newtonian physics,


Not even a line in and I have to make a comment? Um...this isn't going to be a fun post to make.

Alright, so why is it that atheists reject Einsteinian physics? I mean, I'm an atheist and I have no problem with Einsteinian physics, Newtonian physics (well, so long as it doesn't contradict Einsteinian physics), and quantum physics...the problem is that the three all apply in different places for the time being.



proven through Science, experiments, and hard evidence.


Well, there's no other way to establish anything about the material world.

[quite]
Atheists choose not to believe in God, a god,


Easier way to state that: any deity.
And we don't really 'choose' to not believe in it. I honestly don't think I could force myself to believe in a deity. Now, were I presented with something to change my mind, I would be able to make that honest choice...but I can't simply choose to start believing in a deity.



Consciousness,


Atheism: no gods
...consciousness has nothing to do with that proposition. I do believe in consciousness, though I don't think it's a unified thing separate from matter.



spirits,


Also not something about atheism. That's a supernatural phenomenon not involving deities. That would be an a-supernaturalist...which I also happen to be. A better umbrella term would be 'skeptic'.



mysticism,


Please define and explain how mysticism is inherently tied to deities.



paranormal,


Again, supernatural and not tied to deities, atheists can accept that. But most atheists tend to be generally skeptical.



metaphysics due to lack of material evidence.


Metaphysics is just sort of silly. And I'm a philosophy student.



But what about how Quantum Physics in encountering a God/Consciousness archetype?


...it isn't. Dammit, why must the new age people all co-opt hard science and make it about something it isn't. Don't tell me you watched "What the *bleep* do we know?" and thought that quantum physics has anything to say about the macroscopic world.

We haven't encountered quantum phenomena above the atomic scale. You can't recreate the slit experiment with a potato.



*I apologize if I offend anyone for my laxidazical definition of an atheist and for my ignorance, I am only starting to learn about Quantum mechanics so please, bear with me.


That's ok. I'd have suggested researching it a bit better before you post a thread with such a lengthy OP. It would have been wiser to pose questions rather than statements.



An example could possible the "Measurement Problem."


The Heisenberg uncertainty principle? That we cannot simultaneously know how fast an object is moving and its exact position?



From what I understand is that the measurement problem concludes that an atom only appears in a particular place when you measure it. In other words the atom is spread all over the place until a conscious observer decides to measure it. Hence we are making our reality as we observe it.


It's a bit more complicated, though this is already in its third page so I'm hoping someone else covered it. If not, I'll cover it in a reply to a reply to this reply.



I have also read that an atom in 99.99% space/energy and .01% matter. (This is what I keep reading. I have to ask, doesn't matter have energy mixed with it therefore 100% is energy...?I never read this)


Define "energy". You can't have energy in a vacuum. For example, if I have a vacuum in a tube and I toss the tube out in the snow, the vacuum will remain the same temperature (no temperature), as temperature is a measure of energy...more specifically it is the average motion of the molecules in the air. No molecules? no temperature.



Does this mean that our reality is 99.99% space/energy and .1% material? Does this mean we only understand .1% of our reality????


...we understand both space and energy quite well. Well, not 100% and there are some conflicting ideas.



What about string theory and all the different dimensions and parallel universes?


None of those are actually established science yet. They're interesting and one might be the eventual fact of our universe...but none of it is fact.



I don't know if my examples help you understand what I am asking. I just keep reading that Quantum Theory has proven Consciousness true? And that this Consciousness is everything and anything? Is it true, has science found this God?


...um...it's not true.



Other than that, Einstein believed in a "Cosmic Consciousness" he found in the order and beauty of nature and cited Spinoza's work. He even in his later years warmed up to the idea of an energy that flows through everything and determinism.


Einstein was a determinist because he accepted absolute causality. He didn't think there was more than one possibility for an action.

As for Einstein's belief...he considered the universe god...not that it was conscious or anything of that sort. It was just awesome in the most literal sense of the word awesome. The universe was the greatest thing to him, and that was the closest he could come to believing in a deity.



Stephen Hawking even so boldly said "Science is ready to read the mind of God!"


Hawking, like many physicists, likes using metaphors. He is an avowed and unabashed atheist.



What do you believe?


I think that a lot of people find some odd things in a scientific theory and try to apply it to all sorts of woo where it doesn't really fit.



Thank you ATS members. Without you all and ATS, I would go insane!



Really? I tend to find that ATS drives me towards sanity rather than away.


If you must know, I am not an Atheist nor religious follower. I just am and am in search for Knowledge and Truth.


Are you a non-religious theist?



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 05:28 PM
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reply to post by Student X
 


I wonder what they would say about Edgar Cayce then. Best recent example of how far the sub-conscious mind can travel.
edit on 21-1-2011 by FPB214 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 05:40 PM
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reply to post by Student X
 


Being a former Buddhist (in fact, I ended by Buddhism sometime after joining this forum), I'd like to point out that the Tibetans aren't the biggest Buddhist group on the planet, merely the most famous ones.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 05:40 PM
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reply to post by Student X
 


reply to post by Student X
 


Originally posted by Student X
reply to post by SlyFox_79
 


They feel like they have an intellectual claim to QM,


No, science has an intellectual claim to it.



and thus they feel like it is a form of sacrilege for a woo-woo (their favorite derogatory term) to use QM to support or express woo-woo philosophy.


Woo isn't derogatory, it's descriptive. Woo is any field that has no evidence yet makes astounding claims. It's a term that applies to things that pretend to be science but are most definitively unscientific.



They can be quite angry about it at times, in my experience.


Considering that woo is dishonest and fraudulent...yeah, we get angry about that sort of thing.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 05:40 PM
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reply to post by Student X
 



Originally posted by Student X
Thats a myth. Communities of atheists are as vulnerable to groupthink as any other group of humans.


Really? And why did you just randomly cite a Wiki entry about group think that doesn't mention atheists?



I have hung out at atheist forums for years, and I have seen it time and time again.


Anecdotal evidence...



In addition to the belief that there is no God (of ANY kind)


Don't twist words. We don't need more of that idiocy, we have at least three users on this forum trying to spread the myth that atheist entirely exclude the possibility of any deity. We simply have yet to see any evidence of any weight that supports any claim.

You're using the dishonest tactic of shifting the claim burden to the negative position. You are making a positive claim in saying there is a deity of some sort. I am free to be skeptical of that claim. As Christopher Hitchens has said so well, any claim made without evidence can be equally dismissed without evidence.



they share the belief that there is no psychic ability.


That has nothing to do with the idea of any deity...it's a nontheistic claim, so an atheist could believe in it.

..and again, you're shifting the claim. You're shifting the burden of proof. Psychic abilities? No evidence, I'll just reject that claim without evidence.



They share the belief that there is no ANYTHING that remotely smacks of superstition, mysticism, mythology, etc.


Um...I believe in mythology. It's a form of storytelling that humans used to make sense of the world around them in a time when such things were beyond our reach. It shed all sorts of light on human psychology.

As for anything that smacks of superstition or mysticism...well, that also has nothing to do with deities. The term you're looking for is skeptic. Skeptics reject all claims that lack sufficient evidence...atheism is skepticism applied to deities. I am a skeptic.



Even though they aren't REQUIRED to reject all that to be an atheist, they do anyway.


They tend to come to those conclusions through applied critical thinking which is inherently skeptical.



Its the groupthink.


No, it's applied critical thinking. If 10 people come to the same conclusion, it isn't necessarily. group think. Group think is when 10 people come to the same conclusion because 6 of them proposed it



Its insidious.


No, the sort of ignorance that you're spewing on here is insidious. Critical thinking? That's quite a positive thing.



They think they are un-herdable cats. Pfft.


I think you're just a bit too...well...let's just say there's a lot of flippant animosity and positioning on a high horse coming from this post. Maybe I'm reading into it too much, but you seem to put yourself in a position above atheists. Maybe you think you have 'special knowledge', maybe you don't...but it seems like you think you do.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 05:40 PM
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reply to post by Student X
 



Originally posted by Student X
I won't leave it unspoken any longer. I will claim that if you were to spend a few years studying comparative mysticism, comparative mythology, comparative religion, and parapsychology in depth that you would see that the things you mention are indeed related.


Except that they aren't. Also, comparative mythology merely reveals things about the human psyche, mysticism adds nothing to our understanding of the universe, comparative religion sheds light on sociology and history, and 'parapsychology' is unscientific nonsense that wouldn't know experimental design if it spelled out a love letter to it with skywriting.



Mysticism is to consciousness as exercise is to muscles. Psychic functioning is to consciousness as brute strength and leverage is to muscles.


Making an analogy doesn't make that analogy true.



Supernatural beings are better thought of as archetypes of the collective unconscious in symbolic (poetic) form; they are to consciousness as an iceberg is to the mother sea.


And that's just a bad analogy. Also, symbolism can exist without any of it being real. I understand a lot about mythology. Hell, I've been reading Campbell since high school...and yet I can realize that it's all a way for us to understand what we couldn't understand without science.



"There is a continuum of cosmic consciousness against which our individuality builds but accidental fences, and into which our several minds plunge as into a mother sea." -William James




"You can't reason someone out of an opinion they didn't reason themselves into in the first place." -Steven Novella, MD


I can post quotes too.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 05:54 PM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 06:04 PM
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“Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?” a lot of us like me get Epicurus atheism to me isn't the denial of god or rejection of god while sounding very agnostic the first atheists of Athena were sick of crazy god people being paranoid around them. they got it right the first time no one really beliefs Greek ancient gods its a children's fairy tails hopefully any spawn religion from the old testament will be kids stories to. Ultimately im probably a agnostic who can accept atheism as an agnostic i can see that there could be a super intellect who contributed to life on earth engineering animals and seeding flora or maybe there were many super intellects engineering designing earth and that were a mongrel of work. agnosticism accepts Agnostic atheism and Agnostic theism not just the denial of god get it right god huggers.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 06:13 PM
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reply to post by randomname
 

my opinion is most physicists get the universe see how it can be manipulated and accept earth and the universe could be the product of super intellects and a gift to follow in the foot steps of such work.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 06:14 PM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul

They feel like they have an intellectual claim to QM,


No, science has an intellectual claim to it.


I'm sorry, but science needs to learn to share QM with mysticism like a good little boy.

Quantum Questions: Mystical Writings of The World's Great Physicists


edit on 21-1-2011 by Student X because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 06:25 PM
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reply to post by Student X
 

mystisim is the the worst its lower than agnosticism becuase it goes against most religious doctrine by belivieng in other gods before the subject of the chossen faith. its a mongrel of faith and spits on there prophecy lets belief in the tooth fairy, Jesus, leprechauns, gaia, Mohamed blah blah blah

edit on 21-1-2011 by Grimnal because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 06:29 PM
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reply to post by Grimnal
 


What do you care about religious doctrine, anyway?


edit on 21-1-2011 by Student X because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 06:30 PM
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Originally posted by freedish
Good post OP. Quantum mechanics is discovering crazy things lately...I really would like to hear what atheists think about it- according to Q.M. nothing in our universe -should- work, but it does! Quantum physicists say that consciousness affects reality...the saying comes to mind, 'if a tree falls in a forest and nobody is around to hear it, does it make a noise?' The answer according to Q.M. is NO! But obviously we know that is not the answer, if you left a recording there it would make a noise. So there must be a higher consciousness besides human consciousness. That is what I believe God is-the creator of everything. Not only did He create everything, but everything is a part of Him. His fingerprints are on everything. So when a tree falls, it makes a noise, and God hears it.


-Now here's some food for thought...when you are in a dream, everything seems very real. And even people in your dreams -seem- real. But they aren't...they are made up, and if you could lucid dream and tell one of them that they aren't real they wouldn't believe you. The person in your dream might even be 'offended' that you said that. Now think about this- what if we are all participating in one of God's dream? What if we aren't -actually- real, and the only reason things work together is because God allows it to.
edit on 21-1-2011 by freedish because: (no reason given)

The part about lucid dreams is wrong. Dreams as well as lucid dreams are based very much on your expectations and beliefs. This is why it is for example hard for beginners to control dreams or even get "laws of physics" to behave differently. Once you realize that expectations is all you can control everything. The dream characters in my lucid dreams actually agree with me that they are only a figment of my imagination. I can also get them to behave realistically if i want to do that.

The only reason they dont agree with you is because you expect them to be something more than just a creation of your own dreaming brain.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 06:49 PM
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Op i like your thread. It's much more respectful towards atheists than many posts I've seen here lately.

Quantum mechanics are pretty wild. Nothing is really real. Everything is just a probability cloud seen through the filter of the senses and created within the minds eye of the observer. Whose to say that anything really exists. We could just be a sort of virtual construct that believes itself to be real. If you go to a small enough scale matter appears to be like pixels in a simulation.

The universe is a hologram. It could also be on the event horizon of a super-massive black hole (or a white hole).

I'm an atheist in the sense that I don't believe in a God manifest on earth performing miracles etc
I'm open to the possibility that GOD is an E.T.
I'm open to the possibility that GOD is an entity from a higher dimension, like a person looking down at a 2 dimensional character on a screen only it's a 4th dimensional deity observing a 3 dimensional universe on its 'screen'

another possibility I consider
The big bang was everything condensed to a single point
were all a part of that first stage of existence, it's all a big hologram and every piece of a hologram contains the information from the whole image. Everything in the universe is connected in a big quantum entanglement and what we call god is that connection to all things or the ability to access the collective conciousness.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 06:58 PM
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reply to post by Student X
 



Perhaps, but in my years of associating with atheists I have found that atheist mystics are as rare as hair on a billiard ball. A non-significant percentage.


In all my 60 years of associating with Christians I have found that Christian mystics are as rare as hens teeth, equally a non-significant percentage. And your point is what?



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 07:01 PM
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Originally posted by PuterMan
reply to post by Student X
 



Perhaps, but in my years of associating with atheists I have found that atheist mystics are as rare as hair on a billiard ball. A non-significant percentage.


In all my 60 years of associating with Christians I have found that Christian mystics are as rare as hens teeth, equally a non-significant percentage. And your point is what?


Well, ok but there are communities of Christian mystics out there. Are there communities of atheist mystics out there anywhere? If so could you point me to them?


edit on 21-1-2011 by Student X because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 07:10 PM
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reply to post by Student X
 


You seem to be bent on viewing Atheists as a coherent group like a religion. As far as I am aware they are not. I do not attend Atheist meetings, I am not aware of a Church Of Atheism. As far as I am concerned it is a personal thing. I have no idea who else is or is not an atheist and little interest in finding out. I begrudge no one his view point but feel no need to defend a corner as regards any atheistic tendency I may have as that would place it on the same footing as a belief, and it is not a belief but a lack of one. Perhaps you do not understand that? A true atheist has no need of any group dynamic for their atheism. You should drop the group paradigm.



posted on Jan, 21 2011 @ 07:13 PM
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i see a lot of this word "BELIEVE" being thrown about. for example, "an atheist cannot believe QM".

well. see. science has nothing to do with what you, or me, or anyone else believes.


a much better question (than the one posed by the OP) is 'why do mystics not consider QM silly and insulting?'

consider the word: mechanics.

basically, physicists are opening up your little box of magic and claiming that it is mechanical in nature.

in the current season of 'V' on television, the aliens are performing autopsies of human bodies in an effort to locate and destroy the human "soul". of course, this is preposterous. there is no organ of soul. there are no mechanics of soul.

oh sure, the scientists that develop QM certainly recognize (as do the the alien V visitors) that there is something funny going on inside of things. but they have no interest in affirming that mystical nature.....quite the opposite: quantum mechanics is about chopping it up, smashing it together, and altogether disassembling mysticism.


quantum mechanics is the DESTROYER of mysticism.

this of course makes anyone that uses QM to prove mysticism every bit as silly as the V aliens.

quantum mechanics and atheism are the bestest of friends.






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