We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Sunday, December 28. 2014
WSJ (paywall): Science Increasingly Makes the Case for God
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)
From what I have read of the history of science, many pre-20th century scientists had investigated the world with the assumption that they were uncovering the mastery of the Deity's ordering of the world. So, yes.
Seek and ye shall find.
Peering around the edges of existence, as it were, fills one with a sense of wonder at the sheer orderly design of the place. Quantum mechanics, especially, although the fractal nature of the universe also invokes order upon order and repeating patterns up into the very largest structures, galaxies and their physics.
It's as if G-d places no limits on mankind. We have ourselves to do that.
I'd also recommend the Electric Universe to fans of the metaphysical. It's the most exciting, most invigorating thing I've found since quantum mechanics, and it rewrites the staid, tired, old astrophysics and cosmology of the establishment - they are to science what progressivism is to politics - with a much more compelling conversation about origins, including ancient narratives found around the globe since well before Christ.
"Science" indeed makes nothing but the case for G-d. You just have to grasp the impossibility of this existence. The odds are quite beyond astronomical...
It isn't god that creates "order" it is man that sees god in order. In my experience those who try to use science as a proof of god willingly ignore anything that doesn't fulfill their expectations and excitedly trumpets anything that because of it's mystery or "order" seems to propup their beliefs. The problem with using science or any logical system to support a belief in god is that any objective observer can easily see the fallacies that crop up. For example the typical appeal made by those who cite science as proof is that the niverse is too complex to have been created by chance and thus must have been created by intelligent design. But please don't ask then who created that intelligence behind that design, or the endless series of questions that must follow i.e. who created the intelligence that created the intelligence behind the design...
It is better to stick to the wonderment and faith rather then step into the world of science to attempt to prove something that science cannot prove.
A case for G-d is not the same thing as an assertion that science has, is, or shall "prove" G-d, naturally. The point is that what had been the great scientific revolution's abolition of G-d is rapidly turning out to be nothing of the sort.
G-d is Unknowable. The problem for science worshippers is that the more they learn the more precision and fascination and awe confronts them, Surely a Universe without cause or purpose wouldn't manifest such things, assuming it'd manifest anything at all...
"The problem with using science or any logical system to support a belief in god is that any objective observer can easily see the fallacies that crop up."
There are paradigms of faith in "science" as well, where objective observers can easily see the fallacies that crop up. Not long ago I was participating in some business negotiations involving utilities where a participant asked a utility executive "Do you believe in global warming?" The person asking this question was blithely unaware of all the anomalies building up in the current global warning paradigm. Some evolutionary paradigms are impervious to seeing their fallacies as well.
As for "But please don't ask then who created that intelligence behind that design, or the endless series of questions that must follow i.e. who created the intelligence that created the intelligence behind the design..."
Either everything came from something, or nothing comes from nothing. Take your pick.
Exactly. GWTW's formulation is circular, pious, and limited. To exist in a construct is to choose whether to see as much as possible as well as possible, or to tune out.
Too, the ancients were well aware of the inherent paradox of origin, and the contemporary sciencism that preaches origins from nothing is no less a creation myth than those tied to religion. Funny, because the religion of sciencism - big bangs, black holes, comets seeding life, God particles, et al - is crumbling daily now.
My point is simply that for a theist to step outside of their comfort zone in an attemtp to prove the unprovable is a mistake. Their lack of understanding and knowledge of science exposes them to ridicule. It would be lke a poet who could write a beautiful poem about natural beauty choosing to claim that the constants Pi or e are meaningless or that calculus is a waste of time and has never contributed anything to the world. He would expose his ignorance and debase his arguement. It isn't necessary or useful to try to prop up or prove theism with science it is based on faith and a belief system and doesn't lend itelf to science.
"Either everything came from something, or nothing comes from nothing. Take your pick."
As I understand it prior to the big bang all matter was compressed into a very small ball with infinite gravitivity and instability where the ying overcame the yang (or was it the other way around) and exploded into what we now can see and experience. Life was the inevitable result of the presence of specific elements and coumponds in close proximity along with an idea l energy level. From this perspective the only religious context I could entertain is that before humans as we know them existed something else possibly with even superior abilities existed that controlled or directed the flow of life to what we see today. This view isn't "much" different from most religions but a honest discussion of this view would probably quickly devolve into heresey and open warfare or something.
I don't have an answer if that's where you thought I was going. There is so much in life that we don't know and so many experts are wrong that it is the norm and expected. What id do know (or believe) is that you cannot argue that something made something else without leaving yourself open to the question of what made the first "someting".
I would prefer theists stay in the realm of faith, that poets speak of beauty and scientists stick to the facts. But humans are human and can't resist "going there".
The Big Bang is poor conjecture. It has no proof and little evidence. When you suggested "faith" I assumed you preferred a more reasonable model than the myth of big bangs from nothing.
As for segregating domains of thought and experience, the word you seek is philosophy, of which science should be a subset and not a master.
See also: http://www.i-sis.org.uk/Continuous_Creation_from_Electric_Plasma.php
The big bang theory is a theory with some supporting evidence and data. This is what science is all about. Smart people who spend their lives studying an area of science formulate a theory and put it out there for others to support or refute. As more study takes place theories grow or fail. It is not perfect it is merely the best you can do. You say or appear to say that the big bang theory is incorrect but you fail to follow with proof. At this particular point in my life and education I favor the big bang theory. I may change my mind if future information promises something better or refutes it. To me that is the strength of the scientific method, to others it is a weakness.
Philosophy has a troubled history, while many philosophers were interesting many were clearly crazy. Not intended to be disparaging as many great people were/are crazy. Sometimes it creates a kind of single mindedness unavailabe to the common man with a family to feed, etc. Philosophy doesn't require truth nor facts it is merely opinions writ well. Science could never be a subset of philosophy even though popes have tried to make it so. Science and philosophy would appear on the opposite ends of any rational scale of things.
I think what you were searching for is that religion is a subset of philosophy although I consider it to be more related to politics.
Weak arguments, Wind. You want origin proof while believing - an act of faith - in a fanciful theory of spontaneous existence unsupported by the sciences and outlandish on its face.
This you support by invoking smart experts, presumably to do the thinking for us, except if you'd care to really look into it you'd find that numbers of them are disgusted with bangism as the psuedo-scientific dogma it is.
If you'd follow along, the big bang theory is failing, and a credible replacement is again coming forward. Naturally there is no so-called proof either way, and demands for same are pointless Bangism is as credible these days as AGW is, and we see how that travesty is faring.
If you're going to present an argument, fine, but a posture built on an antiquated theory and its residual status quo isn't exactly science, as I keep saying.
As for philosophy, I fail to see how the scientific method is not its tool, making science a process and not a school of thought and belief, as it's become. "Sciencism" is that belief set - what we do not know we shall eventually know if we keep to this course - which describes believers in bangism.
When science is established as a separate, and typically dogmatic institute then the word has lost its definition.
On the other hand, philosophy is that school of seeking that science, as a process, tool, method, or result, should not be. Wiki: "Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with reality, existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational argument. In more casual speech, by extension, 'philosophy' can refer to 'the most basic beliefs, concepts, and attitudes of an individual or group'".
"The word 'philosophy' comes from the Ancient Greek φιλοσοφία (philosophia), which literally means 'love of wisdom'."
Origins, like existence itself, is a problem for philosophy because either state of being, whether spontaneous existence or eternal existence pose the same conundrum: From where, (Then we can get into how, and for a really dicey proposition for science, why. In a universe evidently especially equipped to ask why of itself, the paradox is rather delicious...)
Science cannot answer philosophy's question whether existence is turtles down to a certain point or turtles all the way down. Both run smack dab into existence as a projection of will, motive, intent, order, and meaning - additional abstracts this universe somehow poses - which is where philosophy's ultimate construct, G-d, arises.
Not exactly I neither want nor have I asked for origin proof. It is what it is and people make up their mind. My original point was simply that it is a mistake to dabble in science to prove the unprovable to the unbelieving. Science is agnostic.
There will always be supporters and deniers of any particular scientific theory (see AGW). The big bang theory explains so much of what we see today that is otherwise not explained. Now it will not suprise me if someone comes up with a different theory from the big bang that satisfies those questions and captures my interest.
I'll say it yet again, not that your interest is sufficient motive for any theory to exist. There is an alternate theory and not only is it far more plausible (if you'd care to look into it), but it navigates the G-d problem better too.
Follow the link. And yes, you did use the word proof. Twice, in fact.
Bangism is a far cry from that, nor does it fit any more pieces of the puzzle than phlogostonic tales of invisible matter and spontaneous universes and comets carrying planetary oceans.
"you did use the word proof".
Well of course we are discussing an article that claims to prove something so in reference I used the word "proof". But my response is still accurate that I need no proof of origin. The author may, or he may think others do but I don't and from the sound of it neither do you.
The link went to a bizarre place.
"Proof" doesn't even show up in the original article, GWTW. And bizarre hardly describes the overwhelming evidence supporting plasma physics in the universe, which has been known for decades.
I take it you really don't know this subject.
Bizarre. For example: "Those who have begun to grasp the mega-importance of the Geocentrism Revolution now brewing--a revolution that will enlist true science in returning to the Biblical Geocentrism Model of the universe [See: Size-Structure Pt 1] -will have no difficulty in recognizing the other false science dominos that must fall when the heliocentric deception that made possible the Big Bang deception is toppled."
It's gobbledygook, or maybe the author of the site has something to say but can't help themselves from writing that way, I don't know. All I can say is it was bizarre trying to read it.
You've been steeped in obsolete theories for so long you forgot to remember that they're not fact. Meanwhile findings like these appear all the time.
As I keep saying, the old standard model is dying. This includes the big bang and red shift theory, black holes, neutron stars, star birth, comet theory and seeding life - which just took a huge hit after the ESA started releasing findings from the Rosetta mission - dark matter, and so on.
The writer at the "bizarre" page is right: Standard modelists have been trying to force the data to fit these failing theories for years. It's human nature to erect a theory based on precious little else to go with, have time pass, accumulate momentum, and then when new data appears, forget or refuse to rethink what are now obsolete theories.
You are welcome to embrace the bizarre web site and the debunked theory it supports. Even those scientists the theory supporters cite don't support the theory or agree that any of their own work supports the theory. Perhaps over time a better theory will replace what most scientists agree on today.
And yet you believe in things because you always have. I do not.
I don't think bias means what you think it means.