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Believers: Why is Atheism Irrational?

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posted on May, 22 2011 @ 08:54 AM
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reply to post by bogomil
 



Not quite. I differ in the sense of attaching more importance to human experience of the anomalous, (even sometimes the trans-cosmic) than any agnostic would do. As a category such experiences strongly indicates 'something', which should be taken more seriously than 'science/logic' generally do.


I agree, but currently there has been no empirical or logical evidence to even hypothesise "GOD" to begin with, so even if any specific Definition of God DOES exist, isn't it wise to disbelief until there is reason to believe?

The only person who has to concede in debate is someone who says they DO know, and perhaps someone who takes the "i don't know" appraoch. Which is really disregarding the fact that the theory has been formed without evidence, unless you consider "existence" or "reality" as evidence for a "GOD".

Again semantics at play.

I can't define God, and i don't know what caused the universe, so the rest is a philosophical semantic game, so far i have found no logical, empirical or decent epistemological defintion of God.

That's how i reason my position.

I'm not a fan of the word Agnosticism i just use it to describe that i am ignorant of such profounds realisations about the universe or reality (without knowledge), and thus i can't believe the speculation of other men if it is formed without clear logical or reason.
edit on 22/5/11 by awake_and_aware because: (no reason given)




posted on May, 22 2011 @ 08:56 AM
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reply to post by awake_and_aware
 


You wrote to Mysticnoon:

["I think i understand that mysticism is about a open-minded direct approach to gaining enlightenment on profound unknowns,..."]

To some extent true, but it does not include glorified daydreaming, 'gut-feelings' or the prematurely expected outcome of doctrines ("I believe in this or that, so that's what I expect to experience").

The mystic experience is as unconditional and as openended as the 'initial-experience-position' makes possible. You start with a 'blank', which both can be very frustrating to achieve, and very funny once you've found it (it's much of a trial-and-error knack). There's a lot of humour in true mysticism.

Quote: ["but i find meditation often doesn't lead to absolutes as such,"]

That's the point (at least until some really wise guy finds a way of presenting a pattern). Inversely will 'absolutes' prevent the mystic experience, even down to the point, where meditation-technique can influence the outcome.

E.g. am I lying down, when I meditate (I can be a rather lazy person); something which is considered almost 'heretical' in some meditation systems, where 'cosmic energies' etc only can pass through you in the 'proper' meditational way, when you sit straight up.

Quote: ["I feel there has to be a logical basis for a hypothesis to begin with."]

There is. The allegory of the tea-cup flowing over, when it's already full. Alternative Aldous Huxley's versions of mental 'filters' preventing us from seeing the 'unknown'.

Quote: ["I know it sounds silly (and i'm sure bogomil will slap my wrists for such an argument) but isn't it much similar to go out searching for unicorns or fairies?"]

I wouldn't dream of slapping your wrists; I hold you in high regard.

And in some cases you would be right, there could be unicorns and fairies. But that's because they were searched for. Besides the mystic experience, how far from standard science/logic is appears to be, does share at least some charactistics with science/logic. It's rather uniform, no matter where and when it takes place. It's repeatable and the 'methodology' is rather exact.

Ofcourse I won't carry these similarities between mysticism and science/logic to the extreme of making them identical, but the mystic experience can to some extent make the claim of being the science of mind, at least worthy of not being an enfant terrible, as religion often is, when doctrinalism takes over.

Quote: [" We can only experience reality and work with the evidence we've got. I guess anything is possible, but not every thing is probable."]

No 'anything goes' is suggested. Quite the contrary.

Quote: ["I'm not against Mysticism, especially if it is humble enough to admit what is known and what is unknown, and especially if it provokes further investigation."]

In human terms, what's 'known' and what's 'unknown' will ultimately be a question of what we agree on. My own, sometimes confrontational, attitude towards missionaries is more based on their initial dishonesty in presenting their foundation, and WHEN such a foundation sometimes is presented (e.g. as 'faith') denying other subjective 'faiths' the same potential truth, as they claim for themselves.

I'm sorry, if I have participated in sidetracking this thread into a not intended focuing in mysticism. But you seem to express a genuine curiousity, and besides mysticism represents a third position from the standard religion-science/logic ones, and some of the recurring arguments can get a new meaning from a mystic perspective.

Like Mysticnoon, I have no intentions of missioning for mysticism. That would actually be self-defeating, because of the non-doctrinal character of the experience.



edit on 22-5-2011 by bogomil because: spelling and syntax



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 09:01 AM
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reply to post by bogomil
 



Like Mysticnoon, I have no intentions of missioning for mysticism. That would actually be self-defeating, because of the non-doctrinal character of the experience.


Although i can appreciate mystics "dedicatory" attraction. I'm just as amazed at life, reality and it's cause as anyone else.

I think science is doing a great job of uncovering new evidence about the universe, which removes prior prejudice (The Earth orbits the Sun, not the other way around for example)

In other words, Myself - I couldn't find any use for Mysticism, for the same reason i coudn't find any use is Taoism.



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 09:20 AM
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Originally posted by awake_and_aware
reply to post by bogomil
 



Like Mysticnoon, I have no intentions of missioning for mysticism. That would actually be self-defeating, because of the non-doctrinal character of the experience.


Although i can appreciate mystics "dedicatory" attraction. I'm just as amazed at life, reality and it's cause as anyone else.

I think science is doing a great job of uncovering new evidence about the universe, which removes prior prejudice (The Earth orbits the Sun, not the other way around for example)

In other words, Myself - I couldn't find any use for Mysticism, for the same reason i coudn't find any use is Taoism.


My best and very close friend for 45 years is a rather dedicated buddhist, who from a certain amount of mental laziness also leans on doctrines. Something we've bantered about for decennia.

People can get along very well without agreeing, and academic exchanges of perspectives etc are very valuable.

And as you probably know, I'm as enthusiastic about science as you.

As to finding 'use for', it's ofcourse a personal choice, inclination or conclusion. For me mysticism is a personal thing, and I think people can be perfectly happy, decent and in all ways totally acceptable without it. For the non-mystic mysticism can be regarded as collecting stamps; I doubt anyone would be offended about that.

The same way as you wouldn't expect everybody to be scientifically disposed.
edit on 22-5-2011 by bogomil because: missing word



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 09:46 AM
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reply to post by bogomil
 



I think people can be perfectly happy, decent and in all ways totally acceptable without it.


Thank goodness for that



For the non-mystic mysticism can be regarded as collecting stamps; I doubt anyone would be offended about that.


I'm not sure i get your anology of collecting stamps. Isn't non-mystic mysticism a contradiction?


The same way as you wouldn't expect everybody to be scientifically disposed.


I enjoy the truth, and the pursuit of it. I can't expect everyone to care about the truth, I only HOPE that they do care about it.
edit on 22/5/11 by awake_and_aware because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 12:11 PM
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Originally posted by awake_and_aware
reply to post by bogomil
 



I think people can be perfectly happy, decent and in all ways totally acceptable without it.


Thank goodness for that



For the non-mystic mysticism can be regarded as collecting stamps; I doubt anyone would be offended about that.


I'm not sure i get your anology of collecting stamps. Isn't non-mystic mysticism a contradiction?


The same way as you wouldn't expect everybody to be scientifically disposed.


I enjoy the truth, and the pursuit of it. I can't expect everyone to care about the truth, I only HOPE that they do care about it.
edit on 22/5/11 by awake_and_aware because: (no reason given)


Highlighting quotes:

["Thank goodness for that "]

I agree. Mankind and the planet we live on are not benefitting from any group with claims of general superiority. Naturally car-mechanics are better at car-mechanicking, and scientists at scientificking, but for all I know, the mystic experience could turn out to be something mainly bio-chemical.

So common principles of egality should apply to mystics also, even if they in some parts of existence MAY have specialist qualities. There are no 'übermensch' qualities implied.

["I'm not sure i get your anology of collecting stamps. Isn't non-mystic mysticism a contradiction?"]

My semantic bad. I meant for any person without interest in mysticism, it (mysticism) would just be another private interest.

["I enjoy the truth, and the pursuit of it."]

Me too.

["I can't expect everyone to care about the truth, I only HOPE that they do care about it."]

I'm too old for idealistic enthusiasm (I used to be more dynamic in my youth). I only hope, that those ignoring the value of truth don't start to throw heavy things at each other.

edit on 22-5-2011 by bogomil because: typo



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 12:36 PM
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reply to post by bogomil
 



So common principles of egality should apply to mystics also


In what way, and why? Isn't a care for your own species enough to consider egality of importance?


My semantic bad. I meant for any person without interest in mysticism, it (mysticism) would just be another private interest.


Well, i consider science to be a public interest, we can see the manifestations of science's labour, and the great that it can do. I guess i would concede that it is a private vice too - I guess it depends whether you persue science for personal needs or public needs (or both of course)


I'm too old for idealistic enthusiasm


Well that's sad. Sounds rather nihilistic to me? Please correct my misjudgement if not.

I'm more than happy to promote science, and the type of investigation it promotes. Again, the manifestation of it's labour can be seen all around us....I mean i'm typing to you here, arn't i?!


I only hope, that those ignoring the value of truth don't start to throw heavy things at each other.


It's those who acknowledge the truth and do nothing about it that worry about me. The apocolyptic religious mindset:

"the end is coming, so let's not do anything about it, let's just be submissive for the hope of some wish-washy afterlife"

Those who welcome the enthropic heat-death of the universe or the boiling of oceans as God's "will".

It's especially disconcerting in the age where nuclear armament is beginning, and you have theocratic countries like Iran at the forefront of the national community.


"I am convinced that it is never right to settle any policy simply out of fear of the consequences . . . For all I know it is within the providence of God that the human race should destroy itself in this manner"


The Archbishop of Caterbury (Dr. Geoffrey Fisher) talking about a possible nuclear holocaust.

It's this complacency with the inevitable destruction of our species, and they'd pray to the void and gain followers, than finding means to escape to the Final Frontier, for the progression of our species.

6 million years, we're all screwed, it's about time we stop praying on our knees, and start using our minds practically.
edit on 22/5/11 by awake_and_aware because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 03:15 PM
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reply to post by awake_and_aware
 


You wrote (on egalitarian principles also applied to mystics):

["In what way, and why?"]

Mystics are just 'people'. Not automatically leaders of mankind, and anyone wishing to follow the mystic path, should do this from personal motives, not from having it pushed on them.

Quote: ["Isn't a care for your own species enough to consider egality of importance?"]

Yes to your question. My own toning down mysticism in social contexts is only to avoid elitist claims made by some or expected by some.

Quote: ["Well, i consider science to be a public interest, we can see the manifestations of science's labour, and the great that it can do. I guess i would concede that it is a private vice too - I guess it depends whether you persue science for personal needs or public needs (or both of course)"]

Science is with some marginal my favourite tool for understanding existence. Only in my case it isn't exclusive. I've done a lot of personal examination to find a functional syncretism between the options of various existential tools.

Quote (on my old-age behaviour): ["Well that's sad. Sounds rather nihilistic to me? Please correct my misjudgement if not.

I'm more than happy to promote science, and the type of investigation it promotes. Again, the manifestation of it's labour can be seen all around us....I mean i'm typing to you here, arn't i?!"]

I've never lost my interest or enthusiasm for existential questions. I just don't have so much energy to be outgoing with now. My ATS participation is about what I can manage in that direction.

Quote: ["It's those who acknowledge the truth and do nothing about it that worry about me. The apocolyptic religious mindset:

"the end is coming, so let's not do anything about it, let's just be submissive for the hope of some wish-washy afterlife"]

I have a hypothesis, that what many of the 'afterlife-seekers' really are afraid of is identity-loss. Kind of: "I still want to be ME, even when I'm physically dead".

Quote: ["Those who welcome the enthropic heat-death of the universe or the boiling of oceans as God's "will"."]

This is a point, where I differ. IF there's any such thing as meaning, purpose or similar to cosmic existence, alternatively IF there are other existential states, our cosmos seems to be rather messed up, and in any case not especially benevolent to biological life. Can't say I'll miss it.

Quote: ["It's especially disconcerting in the age where nuclear armament is beginning, and you have theocratic countries like Iran at the forefront of the national community."]

That's my biggest worry also. While I consider mankind still to be talking monkeys, we're not quite that bad as to deserve being bombed out of existence, because we haven't found a functional way (which everyone would accept on the spot) of choosing leaders. The regular theist babbling about submission being the 'proper' attitude, indicates a lot of herd-instincts in us.



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 11:42 PM
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reply to post by awake_and_aware
 



I agree, but currently there has been no empirical or logical evidence to even hypothesise "GOD" to begin with, so even if any specific Definition of God DOES exist, isn't it wise to disbelief until there is reason to believe?


What exactly would be the nature of this elusive empirical evidence of God? By most accounts, God is metaphysical, so how would you propose science could measure and observe something which has no physical attributes?

If it is unwise to believe in the existence of God until such time as science can verify God's existence, isn't that placing unrealistic expectations on the physical sciences? And why should all philosophical and spiritual endeavours and speculations pay obeisance to science, waiting patiently in the wings for science to accomplish something which it was never designed to do? It seems rather irrational to me.



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 02:17 AM
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reply to post by bogomil
 



I'm too old for idealistic enthusiasm (I used to be more dynamic in my youth)


I am totally with you on this one, bogomil, though unlike awake-and-aware, I don't find it sad, but rather a relief. Idealistic enthusiasm can spawn ego-maniacal delusions which inevitably lead to deflation and disillusionment. While age may dampen one's enthusiasm through limited resources of energy, it does bring a measure of reality and down-to-earthiness which is commensurate with greater equipoise.



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 05:28 AM
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reply to post by mysticnoon
 


You wrote:

["What exactly would be the nature of this elusive empirical evidence of God?"]

You're quite right. While empiricism is very valuable for creating a map of the directly observable part of existence, it's doctrinal to insist on it as the exclusive tool for examining existence as a greater whole.

In any case the high weirdness of modern physics has already grown beyond strict empiricism, reductionist materialism and the other leftovers from an exclusive Newtonian science.

'Quantum religionists', ....don't take the above as a justification of your cottage-industry models. Sound data, systematic methodology, observation, pragmatism, objectivity and preferably deductive logic still play a major role. So don't throw the baby out together with the bathing water, as is the habit of many of you, when you introduce your specific theist oddities into any knowledge-vacuum.



edit on 23-5-2011 by bogomil because: spelling, syntax.



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 01:59 PM
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reply to post by mysticnoon
 



What exactly would be the nature of this elusive empirical evidence of God? By most accounts, God is metaphysical, so how would you propose science could measure and observe something which has no physical attributes?


Well some say God is "metaphysical" or "supernatural" - Some claim everything is God, so again with semantics, it's always a losing battle for the Atheist - God is always going to be redefined when something is proved NOT to be God. It's very easy to inferr..

Perhaps you are correct though, maybe God will never be proved, maybe we'll never have the information.


If it is unwise to believe in the existence of God until such time as science can verify God's existence, isn't that placing unrealistic expectations on the physical sciences?


Firstly, we know what God is not, God doesn't take an interest in geological events, God doesn't punish humans or animals with weather.

Until whoever claims there is a God shows their "working out" that can be no resolution.

They made the positive claim, I didn't claim there was no God, and i have no reason to claim there is.

so, again:-


isn't that placing unrealistic expectations on the physical sciences?


yes it is, it's like me saying there is a teapot on pluto outside the range of our best telescopes, Science doesn't have the means to falsify that claim, so how did someone come up with the claim to begin with?

Faith?
edit on 23/5/11 by awake_and_aware because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 02:04 PM
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my point is that there is no empirical or logical reasoning pointing towards an omnipotent deity, or deity.

It's not up to non-believers to prove that claim, someone came up with the claim? How? Why?

Was it a WANT to believe or a REASON to believe?

It seems to me painstakenly obvious that the only person who has to concede is the person who makes up a theory without the means to do so (even logically)

And i'm not talking about hypothesis based on fundamental reasoning (i.e "the 4th dimension" or "the multiverse")

They don't insist upon themselves, they have a mathematical forming, not an theory conjured from abstraction.



posted on May, 24 2011 @ 08:38 AM
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reply to post by awake_and_aware
 


Science started from rather simplistic observations on physical matters, and through developing a systematic methodology on how to analyse, interpretate, test and conclude. It wasn't done in one day and is still evolving.

We are now at a frontier, where new potential vistas have opened, one of them being an option of trans-cosmic existence-level (i.e. scientific 'chaos' = lack of cosmic order as we know it.)

My own position is:

This hypothetical trans-cosmic existence level is to some extent similar (or at least parallel) to experiences, which the experiencees claim to be trans-cosmic in character. Admittedly there are few positive identifaction possibilities in either science or trans-cosmic experiences, but strong similar negations are there.

Both the claims of trans-cosmic experiences and more specific interpretations of them are sofar unvalidated by standard science/logic. Fair enough.

But the collective phenomenon (disregarding specific interpretations) of trans-cosmic experiences is so widespread culturally, geographically and historically, and certainly containing such uniform elements, that it deserves attention in form of serious 'research'.

Any trans-cosmic 'research' would necessitate its own systematic methodology; obviously common empiricism is useless (but giving 'physical' empiricism a status of an exclusive doctrinal absolute lowers science/logic to no better than blind faith, that's just defining things away, as the victorian scientists tended to do), and considering the uncertain (if any) causality in trans-cosmic existence (total 'chaos' = NO causility), deductive logic won't be of major importance either. Here a carefully groomed inductive logic could be of use, as it is in soft social sciences.

So I suggest: Ofcourse first gathering data/observations. Then on a comparative basis searching for patterns, and on such possible patterns formulate a specific systematic methodology suited to this new area of research.

This may sound like some excessively academic ivory-tower project, but it's actually how any serious research functions.

There would, as soon as any reasonably coherent systematic methodology emerges, be an immediate benefit. Theist claims would have a reference point, because included into a trans-cosmic research methodology would also be a consideration of what 'faith' (per se) is.

Please note, that I'm NOT presenting 'answers' in this suggestion, only a search as such. For all I know, a well-considered 'answer' could in 100 years turn out to be, that trans-cosmic experiences exclusively are bio-electro-chemical in nature, ...a purely psychological process of 'faith', ....(or alternatively describing another level of 'reality').

Theist/atheist...the only functional way is to find and analyse information/data/facts BEFORE the 'answer'. Not starting with the answer. And maybe science/logic still is a tad too exclusive on this point, 'defining' metaphysics away, even from research.

The suggestion(s) in this post ofcourse need(s) some specifying and refinement. I don't want to open a door to serious claims of research on the factual existence of the spaghetti monster (or similar).

I believe, I could even come with some useful hints on the basis of such a research.

PS Metaphysicists will need some practical possibilities of verifying their claims, like everybody else, and while science has its grantgivers and commercial backers-up, and religion its believers, metaphysics is a small, usually ignored subject, lost in the skirmish of the giants science and religion.


edit on 24-5-2011 by bogomil because: paragraphing and typos



posted on May, 24 2011 @ 08:50 AM
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As a separate post, answering directly to thread title:

No, (agnostic) atheism is far from being irrational, if it's willing to consider rational suggestions of new systematic methodologies.

Presently I'm not talking about where the money or interest should come from. Only an academic acceptance of a worthwhile research-project.



posted on May, 25 2011 @ 04:03 PM
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reply to post by bogomil
 



PS Metaphysicists will need some practical possibilities of verifying their claims, like everybody else, and while science has its grantgivers and commercial backers-up, and religion its believers, metaphysics is a small, usually ignored subject, lost in the skirmish of the giants science and religion.


I disagree. Although science can succomb to monetary greed (e.g Greedy oil profiteers paying people to refute cold-fusion or other renewable energy "theories")

i think that if you've got a good theory, the evidence or coherence should speak for itself. I can't blame science for the economic system it exists in.

Edison vs Tesla. DC (Edison) won, even though A/C is more efficient and cost effective. D/C gained fiscal support and fame.

I think metaphysics is taken seriously, the multiverse theorem attracts a lot of attention, largely because of it's coherence with quantam theorem.

Again, they may be ignored in our financial climate because funding can't be "justified". Unfortunately that's just the nature of the system we live in.

The awful greedy (fractional reserve based) free-market monetary economy.

What's your position bogomil?

I sense you want to believe something greater than yourself, that it's a logical conclusion that you've come to, i'm interested to know why.

I can't say on what scale reality operates, it's beyond my imagination. I don't see the need to play the pragmatical game of "GOD". And even with mathematic theory, I still can't put faith in "infinity". So i'm left thinking "i don't know" and positive theories can only be formed acknowleding "we don't know" - So i'm skeptical.

So the only position i feel lacking in cognitivie disonance seems to be that of skeptical disbelief. Isn't that how truth is discovered? Open but skeptical...
edit on 25/5/11 by awake_and_aware because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 04:35 AM
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reply to post by awake_and_aware
 


You wrote:

["I think metaphysics is taken seriously, the multiverse theorem attracts a lot of attention, largely because of it's coherence with quantam theorem!]

Hard science can and does take care of the job up, until and a tad beyond, where 'cosmic' considerations stops in traditional science. I have no complaints on neither the interest nor the quality of that.

It's the trans-cosmic part, which is the enfant terrible. I'm rather convinced, that many (also gnostic atheist) scientists would like to do as I suggested, but their reputation could be harmed, because of breaking some dogmas of an outdated nature.

It's a question of creating a systematic methodology, which would satisfy everybody. I'm not overly familiar with recent para-psychology and meta-physics, but a thread here last year on this and related subjects demonstrated, that its methodology still is confused. Whereas the example of early 'approved' para-psychological research was on big brother hard science conditions, which already from square one were self-defeating.

In any case the multiverse theory(ies) are not trans-cosmic as such.

Quote: ["Again, they may be ignored in our financial climate because funding can't be "justified". Unfortunately that's just the nature of the system we live in."]

'Justified' is the key-word. As often as not justification rests on what's in vogue, rather than functionality. Not a bad word about advanced combinations of astro-physics/quantum mechanics, I love the curiostity in it, but the knowledge acquired is knowledge according to what the pundits accept as knowledge, and in any case often pure knowledge for the sake of knowledge, with few immediate mundane benefits.

Quote: ["The awful greedy (fractional reserve based) free-market monetary economy..... What's your position bogomil?"]

Without in any way defending the socio-politico-economical system of former Sovjet, they actually managed to get a lot of advanced para-psychological research done by renaming the subject to 'bio-energy' (making it housebroken to materialist philosophy). As a result, you can these days get an officially approved 4-year education as a bio-energy therapist in Poland (its value can be debated, but at least it's an effort in the right direction).

This is an example parallel to metaphysics.

Generally I believe that free research is a part of modern life, which should have a VERY high priority. The small country Denmark is maybe a good example of that. It has a long tradition of liberalism, and edcuation has long been highly regarded. It's no coincidence, that it was the 'Copenhagen school', not the 'Athen school'.

Quote: [" I sense you want to believe something greater than yourself, that it's a logical conclusion that you've come to, i'm interested to know why."]

I guess the usual conglomerate of genetic qualities and social imprints creating all individual mindsets. In my case an early (almost 'obsession') with 'meaning' in cosmic life and no small amount of curiosity and scepsis on 'authority'.

Quote: ["I can't say on what scale reality operates, it's beyond my imagination. I don't see the need to play the pragmatical game of "GOD"."]

As you know, I actively reject the use of both the word 'god' and its predetermined 'values'. My suggestion doesn't contain 'god' as an operational constant.

Quote: [" And even with mathematic theory, I still can't put faith in "infinity"."]

'Infinity' can be so many things. In e.g. the scientific concept chaos, 'infinity' would be the absense of the limits of ordered cosmos. No limits = limitless, where the crucial point is perception/consciousness/conceptualizing rather than semantics.

The 'mystical' experience is to some extent a direct experience of a (alleged) trans-cosmic limitless-ness.

Quote: [" Open but skeptical..."]

'Sceptical' is fine with me. 'Open', even at its best, will always be a question of priorities. But in a species with more than half of it being at least nominally 'religious' an effort of rational reasoning (by 'rational' I don't mean a science/logic exclusive dogmatic monopoly) is not low on the list.



posted on May, 29 2011 @ 06:54 PM
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wow this is the most intelligent well spoken discussion on this subject i have read to date on this site. bravo, unfortunately it is the exception not the rule.



posted on May, 30 2011 @ 11:14 AM
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Originally posted by CaDreamer
wow this is the most intelligent well spoken discussion on this subject i have read to date on this site. bravo, unfortunately it is the exception not the rule.


Considering this as a merit of Awake-and-aware, I agree. I have learned much from him.



posted on May, 30 2011 @ 12:42 PM
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reply to post by bogomil
 



Hard science can and does take care of the job up, until and a tad beyond, where 'cosmic' considerations stops in traditional science. I have no complaints on neither the interest nor the quality of that.


We're in agreement, although we would depart where "idealistic enthusiasm" is concerned as you've already mentioned. I just believe that enthusiasm in such an area of investigation does great things for our civilisation's future, and has done since the age of enlightenment.


It's the trans-cosmic part, which is the enfant terrible.


I'm not sure what you mean by trans-cosmic; forgive my ignorance. I think it's the metaphysical claims that have been conjured from abstraction, with no logical or empirical grounds to be conjured, and relying on semantics and cold reading to infer the "supernatural".


I'm rather convinced, that many (also gnostic atheist) scientists would like to do as I suggested, but their reputation could be harmed, because of breaking some dogmas of an outdated nature.


Could you re-state your suggestion?

There does seem to be confusion over gnostic and agnostic. Most rational scientists don't make the positive claim that there is no God unless God is specifically defined (intervening, omnipotent, loving)

I think it's rather easy to be a Gnostic atheist to falsifiable Gods. Agnosticism is over the cause of the universe, or the reason, or the force - again - unknowable, unfalsifiable.

I find myself jumping from agnosticism to gnosticism depending on how God is defined. Again, it's an intricate game of semantics, and the pragmatics of which is like treading on egg-shells.



It's a question of creating a systematic methodology, which would satisfy everybody. I'm not overly familiar with recent para-psychology and meta-physics, but a thread here last year on this and related subjects demonstrated, that its methodology still is confused.


Again, science has never been about satisfying everyone, I think if you are unsatisfied with methodology or a theory that you should state why, the methodology and the theory should speak for itself. I think you just need to set the goal of discovery of truth, how we can apply that practically is another matter.


'Justified' is the key-word. As often as not justification rests on what's in vogue, rather than functionality.


I agree somewhat, but especially in areas such as Medicine, effectiveness gets funding, not what's in "vogue" - For example, a lot of money is being put into cancer research.


Not a bad word about advanced combinations of astro-physics/quantum mechanics, I love the curiostity in it, but the knowledge acquired is knowledge according to what the pundits accept as knowledge, and in any case often pure knowledge for the sake of knowledge, with few immediate mundane benefits.


Well often theories can't be demonstrated, only hypothesised, so yes, it does rest on the pundits, until we can falsify it, the most coherent and sound theory will get an attention.

We can only stand on the shoulders of giants (gallileo, newton, tesla, einstein etc.)

Obviously Einstein predicted many things about the universe, of course we were taking his word for it, but it's mathematical theory was convincing, and some of his fundamental theories are being conclusively demonstrated today (gravity probes etc.)


Whereas the example of early 'approved' para-psychological research was on big brother hard science conditions, which already from square one were self-defeating.


I'm not sure you would call this "science" as such, more investigation of subjective accounts. Perhaps there is truth to some theories but no resonable means to form a coherent hypothesis, or have any data to back up their conclusions - That's not to say they are incorrect.

Again, as an Atheist i don't say these phenomenon are not worth investigating. All i say is that subjectve accounts can often be incorrect or mistaken due to an ignorance of a natural phenomenon (or drugs and alcohol lol )



Without in any way defending the socio-politico-economical system of former Sovjet, they actually managed to get a lot of advanced para-psychological research done by renaming the subject to 'bio-energy' (making it housebroken to materialist philosophy). As a result, you can these days get an officially approved 4-year education as a bio-energy therapist in Poland (its value can be debated, but at least it's an effort in the right direction).


Very interesting. I've often heard of psychological experiments carried out by the military, even testing it's soldiers with intense drugs.

"Bio-energy" does just seem like a cop out, but i agree it's a step in the right direction, Does seem to be a word that's used to generalise a rather specific phenomenon - Fortunately, It's not the type of "energy" that is used loosely by Fortune Tellers and Mediums.



Generally I believe that free research is a part of modern life, which should have a VERY high priority.


I couldn't agree more. But again, the coherence of the research and it's implications should speak for itself. For example, we shouldn't be putting unicorn investigation before cancer research. Searching for things that have no justification for searching for in the first place.


The small country Denmark is maybe a good example of that. It has a long tradition of liberalism, and edcuation has long been highly regarded.


It was nice to see them stand up against Islamic bullying as well. You can't help but sing the praises those type of countries who promote such diversity, freedom of expression and educational liberty.


It's no coincidence, that it was the 'Copenhagen school', not the 'Athen school.


Forgive my shortcomings again - What is no co-incidence?


I guess the usual conglomerate of genetic qualities and social imprints creating all individual mindsets. In my case an early (almost 'obsession') with 'meaning' in cosmic life and no small amount of curiosity and scepsis on 'authority'.


It's an obsession i've had, perhaps always will have - I've always been under the impression that everyone has been curious of their origins, or the meaning of existence - ever since we separated ourselves from animals.

Perhaps the answer to your question lies in what evolution can't currently explain, the cause, the further questions of why.

I think that's part of the human condition to ask why; we always think in terms of causality, i've often thought because we're so used to a perception of cause and effect. (being in the space-time continuam) but perhaps it's a mistake to think in accordance with our perception.


Infinity' can be so many things. In e.g. the scientific concept chaos, 'infinity' would be the absense of the limits of ordered cosmos. No limits = limitless, where the crucial point is perception/consciousness/conceptualizing rather than semantics.


I understand what you mean. Again, infinity could mean many things, reality could have a "beginning" and have no ending, preceeding to be infinity, like counting from 0 to infinity.

It could have no beginning and no end- a closed loop. Or an open-infinite loop. Some "philosophers" have described reality as a "search engine" forever learning new possibilities, sometimes repeating itself etc.

Sorry for my vague response, perhaps you can make my answer more consise even if you do have disagreements with it.


The 'mystical' experience is to some extent a direct experience of a (alleged) trans-cosmic limitless-ness.


Why do we have to call that "mystical" though? Isn't that just one way of looking at reality on a very profound level?

Why does investigation into the unknown have to be called "mystical"?


'Sceptical' is fine with me. 'Open', even at its best, will always be a question of priorities.


And i think it's about sorting the priorities in the best way we can.

Apologies for my misunderstands in advance, and thanks for the discussion.
edit on 30/5/11 by awake_and_aware because: (no reason given)



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