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Sekti
04-13-2002, 04:42 PM
Me and my friend talked about this one night for a few hours, we basicly got no where and I wanted your opion.

Clyde
04-13-2002, 04:58 PM
Most people's opinion's on this topic are worthless. Since they are basically re-iterating what they were told when they were young, and the people who told them are just reiterating what they were told when they were young and the people that told them.... you get the picture =)

face_master
04-13-2002, 05:51 PM
I agree. I was taught that there is heaven after earth and I still believe it. I'm afraid if I didn't go to a catholic primary school and high school, I would think quite the contrary

Xterria
04-13-2002, 06:25 PM
if you look at it scientifically, youll probably see that we will not exist. Our brain makes us use our senses, and operate our organs. the heart makes the brain go. Without the heart, its simple, no more blood flows to your brain. Thus all of you organs go out, and since there is no blood flowing, bacteria will decompose you.
That is our defenition of death. Your still there, exept you dont know it and you are rotting.

xlnk
04-13-2002, 10:18 PM
nada, nothing, nilch.

I'm a scientific person, has to be an explanation behind everything.

tyler
04-13-2002, 11:28 PM
Originally posted by xlnk
nada, nothing, nilch.

I'm a scientific person, has to be an explanation behind everything.

Is there any evidence to there NOT being an afterlife?

lightatdawn
04-14-2002, 12:24 AM
>>Is there any evidence to there NOT being an afterlife?

It is common and accepted practice to assume that the lack of evidence to support a theory suggests more about its lack of existance than it does about its existance. One doesnt assume that because there is nothing to disprove an argument that the argument is valid. An argument must have valid points in its favour before it can be considered legitimate.

This discussion is silly. We've done this a million times before.

fyodor
04-14-2002, 12:43 AM
As evidence that the Bible is divinely inspired-the literary brilliance in parts of the Gospel surpasses anything written by man

Fordy
04-14-2002, 02:02 AM
IMHO .......once you're dead.....that's it. No afterlife.........

taylorguitarman
04-14-2002, 02:15 AM
It all comes down to faith (a belief in things we cannot prove). Science is no exception, as it is initially based on the assumption of the uniformity of nature.

nvoigt
04-14-2002, 02:33 AM
>if you look at it scientifically, youll probably see that we will not exist.


If you look at it scientifically, you should see that we have no proof or even hint in any direction. So no theory can be said to be scientifically more probable. I don't know what to believe in. To each his own. I guess as doing good deeds won't hurt your afterlife in any way, and you cannot change it in any other way, doing a lot of good things and believing whatever makes you happy is the perfect choice.

shtarker
04-14-2002, 04:17 AM
Its simple, you come back again as another person.
Back hair is the proof for this:
Lots of back hair means you were evil.
A bit means you were still pretty bad.
Not much means you were an ok person.
The only problem with this theory, is how does the population keep rising? Where are all these new people coming from?


Oh and something tells me I must have been Hitler in a pervious life.

Clyde
04-14-2002, 04:56 AM
"Science is no exception, as it is initially based on the assumption of the uniformity of nature."

The only thing science assumes is that we are not in the Matrix.

Whilst it would nice if there were an after-life, science makes it rampantly clear that there is not.

nvoigt
04-14-2002, 05:26 AM
>science makes it rampantly clear that there is not.

I must have missed that part of science...

Clyde
04-14-2002, 05:36 AM
"I must have missed that part of science..."

..... probably not, you probably just don't want to see it.

Science shows that the brain is basically hugely complicated computer. If the brain is "everything" as science says it is, there is no room for an "after-life".

After death, is no different to before birth.

shtarker
04-14-2002, 05:44 AM
>>Science makes it abundantly clear that the brain is little more than a complex biological computer. Ergo no room for an afterlife, pity really.

And how does it do that?
Science doesn't even tell us how this complex biological computer manages to create our own self awearness, let alone what happens to it after it ceases functioning in ways we have observed.

face_master
04-14-2002, 05:46 AM
According to the poll, a couple people said that they beieve that when you die you live in a blank void. Whats that all about? What type of religion/community teaches that? If they figured it out for tbemselves, they musn't be very immaginative...

Clyde
04-14-2002, 06:23 AM
"And how does it do that?
Science doesn't even tell us how this complex biological computer manages to create our own self awearness, let alone what happens to it after it ceases functioning in ways we have observed."

You expect me to teach you the field of neurology over a message board?

shtarker
04-14-2002, 06:31 AM
No just the small section that has to do with the point at wich the brain dies and scientists prove that there is no afterlife.

Clyde
04-14-2002, 06:59 AM
"No just the small section that has to do with the point at wich the brain dies and scientists prove that there is no afterlife."

............... neurology has shown that the brain IS "us", that there is no seperation between mind and brain. Furthermore science as a whole REJECTS the notion that there could ever be a separation between mind and brain, as it would break the laws of physics.

When you die, the brain ceases to function. Hence you cease to function. Here are someone else's words that offer quite a good explanation.

"Materialism would suggest that the conscious, aware "Self" is established by the structures and processes of the brain. When these structures are destroyed and the processes cease, the conscious, aware "Self" ceases to exist. Similarly, a television picture requires a functioning television set in order to exist; if the TV is broken, no television picture can exist. In this sense, the conscious, aware "Self" would be akin to the television picture, not the TV set itself. When the TV is functioning, a television picture results; when the TV set ceases to function, there is no picture in that TV set.

Everything we know about biology and neurology and how the brain works points toward the likelihood that this marvelous organ contains everything needed to establish a conscious, aware "Self." In fact, the case can be made that the consciousness is necessary in an organism that survives by its mobility, that organisms which evolved to be mobile necessarily evolved the ability to be consciously aware -- however dim that awareness may be in the simpler organisms such as worms."

Now you probably are going to say that all the neurology profs. and biology doctorates are wrong, and hell yea the laws physics can be broken, magic can happen... blah blah blah, but consider this: We can observe experimentally that personality is a property of the brain and nothing more; people who have brain damage in a specific region of the brain get complete personality changes, so when your brain dies, your personality (which defines who "you" are) dies with it.

"The prospect of personal annihilation is staggeringly frightening to most. Many of us would prefer almost any route other than to be given a convincing argument that death is final. In fact, many people will still opt to find ways to justify believing in the more comfortable and more comforting myth, even if shown that annihilation is extremely likely and that other possibilities are very unlikely. They can see it but they won't buy it. Of course: if a loved one is missing, people will ponder just about any scenario besides the prospect of her demise, clinging unashamedly to any hope of her survival. If diagnosed with a grave medical condition, we tend to think that something will happen and we will become one of those amazing success stories in the annals of medicine. This is so natural to the human that many will tell you that the route of "denial" is healthier if one is given such a diagnosis. But the face of the inevitable watches in pitiless consumption as we whistle in the dark valley of the shadow of death"

Oh and incidently we know exactly how and why, people have strange experience's close to death. When the brain is dying the neurones begin firing randomly and large levels of endorphins and other "natural pain killers" are released. The random firing of neurones in the brain creates the impression of a white light in the centre of a person's vision (basically because the greatest concestration of neurones is in the centre of the brain) , and the endorphins released makes them feel relaxed, happy, loved, and also can give people a "floating sensation" etc..... sound familiar?

taylorguitarman
04-14-2002, 09:50 AM
Pick a better analogy.


Similarly, a television picture requires a functioning television set in order to exist; if the TV is broken, no television picture can exist. In this sense, the conscious, aware "Self" would be akin to the television picture, not the TV set itself. When the TV is functioning, a television picture results; when the TV set ceases to function, there is no picture in that TV set.

Regardless if the TV works, the picture still exists (it is broadcasted), we're just not able to observe it.

The problem with science is that it is based on observations and inferences from those observations. Remember the world was flat for a time? "Science" has been wrong before. Science is merely a set of rules to explain things that seem to hold true. Every now and again someone comes up with a better set of rules, but it would be silly to think that the set of rules we "know" and use now are completely correct.


Everything we know about biology and neurology and how the brain works points toward the likelihood that...

Exactly. The likelihood. There still exists the possibililty that we're wrong.

Clyde
04-14-2002, 10:29 AM
"Regardless if the TV works, the picture still exists (it is broadcasted), we're just not able to observe it."

The picture doesn't exist, by definition it doesn't exist. The cathode ray tube might still be spewing out electrons, but the picture does not exist.

"The problem with science is that it is based on observations and inferences from those observations"

Ah yes, here we go, the "science has got wrong" post.

" Remember the world was flat for a time? "Science" has been wrong before"

For a start it is a myth that "science" ever thought the world was flat, the ancient Greeks knew the world was round thousands of years ago.

However science can be wrong, its greatest strength is that it adapts, if theory is proved wrong, it is either chucked or modified. Having said that, with the gargantuan amount evidence in favour of modern neurology and the fact that any alternative would violoate even the most basic laws of physics, means this particular piece of science is about as likely to be disproved as gravity.

So..... all the evidence and theory points one way...but you choose to believe the opposite, *searches for quote*... ah yes:

"The prospect of personal annihilation is staggeringly frightening to most. Many of us would prefer almost any route other than to be given a convincing argument that death is final. In fact, many people will still opt to find ways to justify believing in the more comfortable and more comforting myth, even if shown that annihilation is extremely likely and that other possibilities are very unlikely"

"Exactly. The likelihood. There still exists the possibililty that we're wrong"

Yes indeed, and there exists the possiblity we are in the Matrix..... thing is people don't believe that because they deem it rediculously improbable, about as probable say as all the laws of physics and everything known about neurology being completely wrong....

But its ok, i understand, denial is great.

golfinguy4
04-14-2002, 10:39 AM
To settle all of these religous discussions:

Even Einstein, one of the world's greatest scientists, said there had to be a god because the universe is just so enormous, mysterious, and he couldn't devise a way all of this could have happened.

Clyde
04-14-2002, 10:46 AM
"Even Einstein, one of the world's greatest scientists, said there had to be a god because the universe is just so enormous, mysterious, and he couldn't devise a way all of this could have happened."

....... Einstein thoroughy REJECTED the idea of a biblical "God" that was omnipotent omniscient, etc. etc. He did however think there was some underlying order in the universe. The reason is that many underlying principles seem "finely tuned" ie. if the nuclear strong force was a tiny tiny tiny tiny bit stronger, then protons would bind to protons and what we would have is a very different (and fairly dull) universe completely incapable of supporting life.

However, Quantum theory combined with the anthropic principle have scuppered that line of reasoning. Quantum theory shows that there could be a near infite number of universe's each with a slight variation in physical laws/properties, the anthropic principle points out that given that we exist, the universe we exist in is bound to have properties that support intelligent life.

jinx
04-14-2002, 11:00 AM
In my tweaked little mind, this is how I picture it...Picture a combonation of of the Matrix and Jet Li's the One. Our minds percieve only what we "know" can exist in some preproggramed method we were born into. Other beings exist all around us, but our brain cannot perceive them because they are in a different state or "wave length". This is similiar to the way that we cannot dectect microwaves or alpha waves or beta waves. In some cases, I have read that some people have actually been able to listen to a radio for a long period of time on one station, then turn it off and still be able to "hear", in another form of perception, and tell what is playing 10-20 minutes later. The cause of this from the certain researchers performing this experemint was that once the brain recieves information in one way for long enough to figure out how to change it into sensable data, then an understandable perception results. Sooo...When we die, we simply change state into another wave length were we are reincarnated into ourselves as the same being only on another wave length. This, I suppose, happens constantly forever until we reach a Nirvana, a place kinda stuck inbetween waves, I think.:confused:

Clyde
04-14-2002, 11:43 AM
" Our minds percieve only what we "know" can exist in some preproggramed method we were born into"

What do you mean by "percieve"? We can directly sense stuff, using our 5 senses and we can picture stuff in our heads that is based on what we have previously seen: IE. a blind man can not picture red, but someone who has seen red can.

On the other hand, we can understand, and model things that we cannot picture in our heads: see quantum mechanics and relativity.

"Other beings exist all around us, but our brain cannot perceive them because they are in a different state or "wave length". "

.... We "percieve" things based on our 5 senses, and there are other beings all around us...... they're called animals.

"This is similiar to the way that we cannot dectect microwaves or alpha waves or beta waves"

Our eyes can only detect light which is radiation with wavelength 400-700 nm, almost all solids absorb some radiation in that limit, it's concieveable that if we got a "perfect" crystal and stuck it in a vacum it would be "invisable" but we could still sense it by touch, or bounce things off it, or (if we really wanted to) taste it, etc. Alpha waves......... are either patterns the brain makes and not really waves at all, or you could be refering to alpha particles which are chucked out when certain elements decay, beta waves/particles..... are just electrons.

" In some cases, I have read that some people have actually been able to listen to a radio for a long period of time on one station, then turn it off and still be able to "hear", in another form of perception, and tell what is playing 10-20 minutes later"

.... don't believe everything you read. Human beings cannot pick up radiowaves, fullstop.

"cause of this from the certain researchers performing this experemint was that once the brain recieves information in one way for long enough to figure out how to change it into sensable data, then an understandable perception results"

Heh "researchers"....... the brain cannot "percieve" radio waves because none of the sense's can detect them: The ears don't detect radiation at all, they detect vibrations in the air. If anything could detect radiowaves it would be the eyes but they can't.

"Sooo...When we die, we simply change state into another wave length were we are reincarnated into ourselves as the same being only on another wave length."

Change state? Changing state means going from gas -> liquid or liquid -> solid etc. etc. And errr you really should look up what wavelength is: The distance between two crest's or two trough's in a given wave.

Whilst you could claim human beings have a wavelength equal to h/p. A: It has absolutely no relation to how we percieve anything, and B: it's too small to have any real effect, only very small masses display wave-like properties.

When we die, we die. We cease, we stop, we end, thats it, game over, etc. etc.

taylorguitarman
04-14-2002, 11:50 AM
I didn't mean to say that "science" said the world was flat. Sorry, I just meant that it was a common belief that the world was flat (yet was completely wrong). The science has been wrong before was another point.
Still, I do believe in science and I'm not going to go jump off a cliff and hope that gravity no longer exists as I fall (one day it might not who knows). I don't think science is completely wrong, but I do think there's a copious amount of knowledge we are not yet aware of.

>But its ok, i understand, denial is great.

No, I like to think of it more as scepticism, which is a great thing for a scientist to have.

I do believe in God and some form of after life. If I'm right, then all the better. If I'm wrong, I'll never know it.

Clyde
04-14-2002, 11:54 AM
"No, I like to think of it more as scepticism, which is a great thing for a scientist to have."

Skepticism is definitely a good thing, though i fail to see how skepticism leads one to conclude there is an after-life.

I doubt you will find anyone who considers themselves a skeptic who believes in an after-life (just check out the skeptics magazines or the numerous skeptics websites). Skeptics generally only accept the most rigorously proved of theorems.

"I do believe in God and some form of after life. If I'm right, then all the better. If I'm wrong, I'll never know it."

True enough. But make the most of life, I hate the idea that there are people out there who don't make the most of life, expecting that they will have an eternity of living in the clouds with a harp etc. etc. to do stuff in.

golfinguy4
04-14-2002, 12:43 PM
Then I guess the biography I read was wrong??

Clyde
04-14-2002, 01:04 PM
"Then I guess the biography I read was wrong??"

... guess so:

"I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own -- a God, in short, who is but a reflection of human frailty. Neither can I believe that the individual survives the death of his body, although feeble souls harbor such thoughts through fear or ridiculous egotisms."
[Albert Einstein, obituary in New York Times, 19 April 1955]

"Scientific research is based on the idea that everything that takes place is determined by laws of nature, and therefore this holds for the action of people. For this reason, a research scientist will hardly be inclined to believe that events could be influenced by a prayer, i.e. by a wish addressed to a Supernatural Being."
[Albert Einstein, 1936, responding to a child who wrote and asked if scientists pray. Source: "Albert Einstein: The Human Side", Edited by Helen Dukas and Banesh Hoffmann]


"It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it."
[Albert Einstein, 1954, from "Albert Einstein: The Human Side", edited by Helen Dukas and Banesh Hoffman, Princeton University Press]

xlnk
04-14-2002, 01:09 PM
Originally posted by tyler

Is there any evidence to there NOT being an afterlife?



Is there any evidence that their is a heaven or reincarnation?

I'm Hindu, but I dont believe in reincarnation. Im more scientific minded.

taylorguitarman
04-14-2002, 01:45 PM
Isn't reincarnation a significant part of Hinduism?

>Scientific research is based on the idea that everything that takes place is determined by laws of nature, and therefore this holds for the action of people.

Doesn't this eliminate free will and mean that ultimately our actions are entirely predictable? Scary concept to accept.

It is very difficult to explain the existance of laws of nature (without a circular argument), there needs to exist an intial cause. For science, it's usually the big bang which if you think about it is totally against scientific reasoning.
Hume (an old philosopher) believed the same thing, human actions are just as predictable as physical objects, but have far too many variables for us to consider. But he cites God as the intial cause (which then only requires reasoning that God exists).

Neither one can be undoubtably proven, as far as I know.

>make the most of life

Indeed. Go program something. :)

xlnk
04-14-2002, 02:04 PM
yes, reincarnation is a significant part of Hinduism, but i mainly believe in the values set forth by the religion. For example being a vegetarian, etc.

Our actions are predictable and are unpredictable.

First people choose their own decisions, sometimes knowing fully the advantages and consequences in the future of the decision, predictable.

Second, I dont believe in fate, what happens well happens. You can get shot while at a gas station in broad daylight next to a high way, unpredictable.

But mainly i believe a persons future is based on the decisions that that person makes.

so in saying that, some people believe in God. I for one believe in my self. :)

and yes i agree, make the most of life. You dont know what is going to happen to you tommorow. Live life to the fullest, everyday.

jinx
04-14-2002, 02:47 PM
"Clyde":

By "perceiving" I meant that the brain interprets our 5 senses in the only ways that we can undestand them. IE if you could "Touch" radio waves, then the brain would make you fully awhere that you were being constantly "touched" by these waves.

>>The beings around us, not animals, I meant to be other lives that we cannot sense. Hence there existances cannot be "percieved" by any senses that we have or have the technology to build.

>>Sooo... When we die....How do you know what happens when we die? Have been dead before? How long were you dead for? What was it like? Oh yeah, almost forgot, you don't know! Neither do I for sure. I think that you need to back off and be more open minded toward other peoples "opinions" because remember you don't know as much as you think you know and we don't know as much as we want to know. Alright.

Clyde
04-14-2002, 03:21 PM
"IE if you could "Touch" radio waves, then the brain would make you fully awhere that you were being constantly "touched" by these waves. "

Not nessesarily the brain filter's out "junk" information, thats how you can listen to people in noisy rooms.

"The beings around us, not animals, I meant to be other lives that we cannot sense. Hence there existances cannot be "percieved" by any senses that we have or have the technology to build. "

Oh I see, magic beings, who break all the laws of physics, of which we have no evidence. Riiiight, and errr we should believe in them.. why?

"Sooo... When we die....How do you know what happens when we die?"

.... i've already covered that question, read the thread.

" Have been dead before? How long were you dead for? What was it like?"

Actually "I" have been dead before, how long you ask? Hmm... since time appears to have a beginning I'd have to say the length I was "dead" was between the bigbang and my birth: a dozen or so billion years. What was it like? It wasn't.

"I think that you need to back off and be more open minded toward other peoples "opinions" because remember you don't know as much as you think you know and we don't know as much as we want to know"

Open minded, ... oh i see you mean ignorant. I should be more ignorant of neurology, more ignorant of physics, yea baby the path to open mindness is ignorance WOOT.

Richard Dawkins: "There is such a thing as being so "open-minded" that your brains drop out".

I'll tell you what I know: there is no after life, it is not possible, you are your brain, when your brain ceases to exist, you cease to exist. FULLSTOP.

Clyde
04-14-2002, 03:27 PM
"Doesn't this eliminate free will and mean that ultimately our actions are entirely predictable? Scary concept to accept."

Indeed it is a scary concept..... but a true one. Free-will cannot exist without breaking the laws of physics. Further-more there is direct evidence that it doesn't exist:

In a neurology experiment, people were wired to a machine that looks at brain patterns and asked to push a button, whenever they felt like it........ well the researchers looking at the brain pattern's knew when the people were going to press the button half a second BEFORE the people themselves knew! The brain decides what to do, then lets us know.

"It is very difficult to explain the existance of laws of nature (without a circular argument), there needs to exist an intial cause. For science, it's usually the big bang which if you think about it is totally against scientific reasoning."

Er... no the big bang is NOT in anyway against scientific reasoning. Where's the cause? you ask, invalid question I say. What does that mean? you ask, It means that the way we look at things and understand them is based upon the way the universe works. We look for cause and effect, because causality is etched into the properties of the universe, but it is merely a reflection of the laws of physics, hence such principles cannot be applied to the big-bang itself. Also the question is doubly invalid, since it is currently believed that time itself began with the big-bang, you cannot have a "cause" if you don't have a "before". If we ever get an "answer" it will not be one that will satisfy us and "feel" right, it will be an answer written in maths.

"Hume (an old philosopher) believed the same thing, human actions are just as predictable as physical objects, but have far too many variables for us to consider. But he cites God as the intial cause (which then only requires reasoning that God exists)"

Hume generally wrote trite, however he is correct in that human beings are merely vastly complicated chemical systems. Whether they are predictable or not is another question. The Heisenberg uncertainty principle screws alot of prediction up, we could never have a computer and plug into it all the data of the universe and expect it to predict the future.

xlnk
04-14-2002, 03:30 PM
Originally posted by Clyde

I'll tell you what I know: there is no after life, it is not possible, you are your brain, when your brain ceases to exist, you cease to exist. FULLSTOP.

aye aye

im still open minded, and accept other peoples views and beliefs, just saying so, so nobody jumps at me ;)

Clyde
04-14-2002, 03:40 PM
"im still open minded, and accept other peoples views and beliefs"

Oh i accept other people's views and beliefs..... if they are rational.

You see there is a great hypocrisy, someone tells you that his goats are talking to him, you think "nutter", someone says he speaks to Napolean on a regular basis, you think "nutter", someone says that we are surrounded by invisable untouchable "beings", you think "I respect that".

xlnk
04-14-2002, 04:09 PM
of course, this supernatural stuff is utter bull.

taylorguitarman
04-14-2002, 04:30 PM
If you don't have to prove the big bang, I don't have to prove God's existence. ;)
I'm tired of thinking, I'm done.

Clyde
04-14-2002, 04:41 PM
"If you don't have to prove the big bang, I don't have to prove God's existence. "

But we do have to "prove" the big bang occured! And we have vast reams of evidence showing just that, including: the expansion of the universe, the background radiation, the predictions from relativity, etc.

nvoigt
04-14-2002, 04:47 PM
I'll tell you what I know: there is no after life, it is not possible, you are your brain, when your brain ceases to exist, you cease to exist. FULLSTOP.


This is your personal belief. If you were an open-minded person, you would acknowledge the fact that even neurology isn't 100% perfect and such a thing as an AfterLife might exist.

Religion is the blind faith in God and Afterlife. Just because some people believe in the contrary doesn't make the blind faith any better. No matter what you believe in, all you have as a base is a big book written by a species of mankind. And s/he might have been wrong. Failing to acknowledge this is blind faith, no matter if the book is the bible, quoran or a scientific book.

>I'll tell you what I know

And you know this because of what ? Did you read the book ( please replace with appropriate book from above ) ? Great.


Whatever. I know the absolute truth: It's 42 EXCLAMATION MARK !

Clyde
04-14-2002, 05:31 PM
"This is your personal belief. If you were an open-minded person, you would acknowledge the fact that even neurology isn't 100% perfect and such a thing as an AfterLife might exist. "

It is my personal belief because it's the scientific viewpoint, for an "after-life" to exist neurology has to be completely wrong as do even the most basic laws of physics.... they might be..... and we might live in the Matrix, and tommorow gravity might stop and we might all float away....... riiight

"Religion is the blind faith in God and Afterlife"

Yup, and when people say they have "blind faith" in their goats talking to them, we say: "Nutcase" but if on the other hand they have belief in a supreme being and a magical after-life that cannot possibly exist, we say "I respect that", complete hypocrisy, the reason though is a simple one. It's one of social acceptability:

If people had been saying that goats spoke to them for a few thousand years instead of saying that there was an after-life et. al. the situation would be entirely reversed, we would be sitting here and I would be saying "Yup and when people say they have "blind faith" in magically living after dieing we would say: "Nutcase", but if on the other hand they believe goats talk to them, we say " I respect that".........

"Just because some people believe in the contrary doesn't make the blind faith any better"

Faith.... let me tell you what faith is; its a get-out clause, a particularly ingenious one. How would one go about persuading people to believe the most irrational ideas known to man, how could one not only persuade them of these ideas but also get them to stick in the face of logic? The answer is brilliant; you tell these people from an extremely early age, that the very thing that makes these ideas irrational, is to be sought after! You give it a name and voila!

Of course, again, its so socially acceptable, so ingrained into all of our collective psyche, to think of "faith" as a good thing, that realising what it actually is, comes as quite the shock.

Though even the most learned of religious people flail hideously when you ask them what they think faith is, they normally resort to double talk, and supremely circular arguments.

It is used to justify belief in the rediculously improbable, but of course it doesn't really justify anything; I believe goats are talking to me.... why?... faith...... riiiiight.

"No matter what you believe in, all you have as a base is a big book written by a species of mankind"

Well quite, but just because two things were written by man does not make them equally true: I could write a book explaining in detail why i thought the Earth was flat it would not however be even remotely comparable in terms of what is useful in terms of truth with Newton's Principia Mathamatica. So then comes the question; how do we determine which sources of human knowledge to use? Which ones to believe and which ones to chuck on the bonfire?

Logic comes to our aid once again, what is the basis in the claims of said book? Is there evidence supporting it? Do other theories with evidence supporting them support the claims in said book? Etc. etc. In-fact people are pretty good at judging........ except when indocrination and social acceptablilty rears it's ugly head, then perfectly sane, intelligent people lose their minds entirely.

"Failing to acknowledge this is blind faith, no matter if the book is the bible, quoran or a scientific book. "

Oh i love this one, yea thats right, my belief in relativity is as much blind-faith as some-one's in the bible or that a tribal dance causes rain........... or ......... not. You see, relativity, has reems of evidence supporting it, has been mathematically derived from the laws of electo-statics, which in turn have trully gargantuan amounts evidence supporting them. See: No blind faith, evidence and logic. Blind faith = irrational = not usefull in getting the truth.

"And you know this because of what ? Did you read the book ( please replace with appropriate book from above ) ? Great. "

You know, you are seriously trying to argue that because it's in a book it must therefore be as valid as information in all other books!!!!!!!! That's so rediculous its almost funny.

Because neurology is in a book, it's just as valid as my book explaining that monitors are made out of pizza!....... ya!

Neurology whether taught in a book or at a lecture has reems and reems and reems and reems of evidence supporting it, not only that but it provides tangible mechanism that explains how the phenomenon it descibes arise, that are supported by biochemistry, genetics, and a whole host of other subjects. The same applies to the basic laws of physics; consertion of energy, entropy of the universe always increasing, etc. etc.

Like I said it could all be wrong..... or ... not. If it looks like a horse, smells like a horse, taste's like a horse, feels like a horse, sounds like a horse, chances are ..... its a horse.

"I know the absolute truth: It's 42 EXCLAMATION MARK !"

Adam's rocked.

xlnk
04-14-2002, 07:19 PM
on topic of religion, i believe that religion was created to rule over people. Religion was put there so people are not barbarians, created by some king to rule over people, or something. but in the end religion is just text or word of mouth, something for people to believe in, just like i believe in my self, even though i'm Hindu, i also like to think as science as my religion, so to speak...:)
____________
open-minded

nvoigt
04-15-2002, 12:07 AM
>Blind faith = irrational = not usefull in getting the truth.

You got it. This is exactly what I'm talking about.

>Like I said it could all be wrong..... or ... not.

Right. There is no proof for the existance of a higher being.
But then, there is no proof of the absence of a higher being.
As a logical person, I would therefore conclude that both is
possible.

Same with Afterlife. Scientists say that as they have discovered
Neurology, they can say that we have no physical soul. We have
a heart, we have a brain, but noone found a soul yet. Yet.

But can it be found with physical explanations ? Who said the
soul or whatever survives this life has to be squeezed besides
the brain, that it rests in our skull until we die ? Who said
that ?

>chances are ..... its a horse.

That's right. I'm not saying that I can do anything to make you
believe in an Afterlife. It's not probable. I don't really believe
this either. But saying that there is none is simply ignorant of the
fact that even science can fail. Not acknowledging the chance that
science will know better in hundred years ( like it did for the last
10.000.000 years ) is blind belief, not better than any religion.

compjinx
04-15-2002, 02:58 AM
Albert Einstein: "...science without religion is lame; religion without science is blind."

It all boils down to what you believe in. what comes after life is nothing that can be proven, so why debate about it?

Clyde
04-15-2002, 04:02 AM
"Right. There is no proof for the existance of a higher being.
But then, there is no proof of the absence of a higher being.
As a logical person, I would therefore conclude that both is
possible. "

Oh this is another classic:

There is no proof for the existance of santa-claus, but then, there is no proof of the absence of santa-claus, as a logical person, I would there conclude both are possible..........

Bzzzzt. I think not, you see we do not build up a picture of reality based upon what has not been disproved -> if we did we would end up living in a dream world. We build up a picture of reality based upon evidence and theory.

Plus there IS huge amounts of "proof" in the abasence of an after-life: Neurology and physics.

"We have
a heart, we have a brain, but noone found a soul yet. Yet"

Errr, a heart is made of cells, lungs are made of cells, a "soul" is made of magic. Furthermore, there is no rational reason to believe in a soul when every function of such a soul can be accounted to the brain.

"That's right. I'm not saying that I can do anything to make you
believe in an Afterlife. It's not probable. I don't really believe
this either"

You're clinging to hope, ignoring rationality blindingly believeing in what you choose. It's ok i've seen it dozens of times before. For a long time Ijust could not get my head around it, after all if I think one particular scientific theory has got it right, then another one comes along and blows it out of the water, I don't cling voratiously to the previously disproved theory.... But people do just that when it comes to religion, they believe not in what's rational, but in what they want to believe. Now it's not imposible for people to come around...... but normally you have to get em young, after say 20ish, the ideas are so ingrained into their heads, that no amount of reasoning makes any difference. It's sad really, but it's a flaw in the brain. To be expected i guess since out brain evolved not to ponder reality but to help us hunt antelope.

"But saying that there is none is simply ignorant of the
fact that even science can fail"

..... for there to be one, ALL of neurology has got to be wrong, completely wrong, as does ALL of physics. Even though we have voluminous amounts of evidence supporting them. The probablitly that they are both entirely wrong (which needs to happen for there to be an after-life) is so incomprehensibly small, that we can treat it as never happening. Atleast when dealing with other phenonmenon with EQUAL probability we ignore them as utterly rediculous:

Living in the Matrix: possible, but so improbable we ignore it, a dragon materialising over our heads when we eat lunch, possible, but so improbable we ignore it, the after-life, possible, but so improbable we ignore it.

"Not acknowledging the chance that
science will know better in hundred years ( like it did for the last
10.000.000 years ) is blind belief, not better than any religion"

Errr, science has only been around for 4,000 years. And no doubt we will know more (though in certain fields, like physics just how much more is unknown) in another 10,000 but there is no way in hell that all of physics and all of neurology are ever going to be proved wrong. (We can SEE neurology working with MRI scanners, we can test neurology by opening people's heads up, or stimulating the brain in certain regions with magnetic fields and noting the results, planes, cars, computers, stereos, all technology are all based on the laws of physics) That idea is as rediculous as suggesting that maybe in 10,000 years science will prove the Earth is flat!

There is no "blind faith" in science, just cold, hard reason.

So when you say:

"Blind faith = irrational = not usefull in getting the truth.

You got it. This is exactly what I'm talking about"

I take it then you have abandoned relgion then? And do not believe in any of this nonsensical after-life/ supreme being/ talking goats/ santa-claus etc.?

Clyde
04-15-2002, 04:04 AM
"It all boils down to what you believe in. what comes after life is nothing that can be proven, so why debate about it?"

Well A it can be proven, see neurology and physics. And B even if it couldn't (which it can) it would still be utterly irrational to believe in it, just like believeing in Santa-Claus would be irrational, even though there is no "proof" against his existance.

Oh and you might want to check out what Einstein means when he says religion :)

nvoigt
04-15-2002, 05:15 AM
>I take it then you have abandoned relgion then? And do not >believe in any of this nonsensical after-life/ supreme being/ >talking goats/ santa-claus etc.?

I don't believe in these things and never have. I don't believe things I don't have proof for. And while I don't believe in a higher being myself, I cannot rightly claim to know better than a believer, because I cannot prove him wrong.

Clyde
04-15-2002, 05:51 AM
"I don't believe things I don't have proof for. And while I don't believe in a higher being myself, I cannot rightly claim to know better than a believer, because I cannot prove him wrong"

Whilst it is true you cannot prove him wrong, you can prove what he believes in is irrational, and you can prove that if you want the truth the only way to go about getting it is through rationality.

That is why you can also claim to know better than someone who believes in Santa/talking goats/(insert random rediculous statement here).