* ENLIGHTENED *.....by.....* SCIENCE *

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by shawn, Sep 13, 2010.

  1. Saltmeister

    Saltmeister The Dangerous Dinner

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    I have been offended by people enough to strike back, but even then it was not my response to insult their intelligence. My own experience at being offended is that it has more to do with my own perception of what is happening in that thread. It often feels like the other guy really wants to hit me (metaphorically speaking). If there is something that lessens my anger, it is that I probably would have said the same thing if I was in the same situation.

    I don't know who it is you say was being rude to you, whether it is a group or a single person. But you are not alone in being insulted in the forums, and we have probably been slandered by at least one person in common. I choose not to name the person I am thinking of, because the point is that if you have experienced it, other people have probably experienced it too.

    (There is a certain person in the forums who ...... ah heck, whatever.:rolleyes::mad:)

    If I speak ill of anyone, I try my best to avoid referring to a group or individual that participates in the forums, especially one involved in the discussion here. This is where straw men come in handy. If you don't want to attack fellow forum members, then attack a straw man. It is also not my policy to insult someone's intelligence. I don't use terms or expressions like "retards," and "defending the indefensible." It is not my style. I spoke my mind and said what I intended to say, which I do not consider pretentious. I did not check for any "logical contradictions" in what I said. I communicate intent, not cryptic logic.

    You may well have been offended by what I said, just as I might have been offended by you calling me rude, which may also be rude to me, but a more important question is what do I do with that? Criticism is rude and offensive. How do I respond to criticism? .... could be an idea for a new thread.

    Haven't you already done the questioning yourself? You are asking other people to question thought systems and religions that are not your own. For now, you can at least be satisfied with your own personal journey in "questioning" things.

    Asking people to question their "religion"......That would be less of a problem if there was no internal debate or conflict about the merits, ethics and benefits of certain ideas and attitudes within a religion, whether that religion is being divisive, enslaving people or doing harm to humanity. But I know that there is internal debate and conflict within religions about the merits, ethics, ideas and attitudes towards themselves and outsiders. There are people who question the established thought system of a religion and they do it as part of that religion of which they are the adherents. They try to reform the system, not tear it down.

    If you are asking people to question the established thought system I have less of a problem with that. I have less of a problem with trying to reform existing systems. But if you are asking people to question the idea of belonging to that religion, I am not so supportive. You'd be asking people to tear down a system and that is going to cause some social angst. Asking people to question the whole thing is like barging in on family matters and tearing that family apart.

    If people leave a religion, no problem. That is a personal matter. Just leave the "system" alone and let it be. If religions have an emotional appeal to people and emotions are an important part of humanity, then you are intruding on someone else's humanity, by asking them to "question" their religion. If a person is going to question, they are going to question. It's an individualistic and spontaneous process. You cannot make a person question something because then you are interfering with their autonomy. Let them do it on their own.

    Being enlightened by science is one thing, but questioning is another. Furthermore, you have already done the questioning yourself. You have decided what is right for you. Asking someone else to question is a bit intrusive isn't it? You're intruding on someone else's individual independence. You are not even part of the "system," the religion of which they are a part. Your request to people to "question" their beliefs doesn't benefit their community and community is an important thing to humanity.

    If people's responses here are offensive, then hopefully my view here will explain why people may be offended by your view/questioning. I am also aware that you may be offended by this explanation I have given. Criticism is often offensive and what is offensive is often rude. If I have been rude here then sorry, I am just trying to explain the situation and how the "system" works.

    I am not in any way saying there is no point to this thread. People have to put their views and ideas out there and see what happens. I do that. I know that I have offended a lot of people during my membership here. I don't do it deliberately. Most of it was an accident and I learned from it.

    What I am more concerned about is what conclusion you form from this discussion, which from my perspective is far from over. I do not believe this thread has run its course and that everybody has explored the issue fully. In this post, however, I am not talking about your opening post, but your point about "questioning." I am close to concluding about the "questioning," but not the "enlightened by science" aspect.

    I have yet to respond to Diagoras' post. When I get around to doing that, I may respond to your opening post (which is what you want, right?) -- if I get the time......
     
  2. Saltmeister

    Saltmeister The Dangerous Dinner

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    There is one thing I'd like to add about being rude to people in the forums. It's an accident. I don't do it on purpose. If I say it, it's because I don't think I'm being rude.:rolleyes:;) Rudeness is subjective, right? What offends one person may not offend another.

    Another point: If a person is not trying to be rude, why should you think of it as rude at all?
     
  3. shawn

    shawn New Member

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    Thanks for the response salty.
    Even though things have strayed way off topic, this is at least discussion.
    As opposed to attacks and demands for credentials, etc.
    A forum such as this....in my opinion....is a level playing field where reasonable people of any status or belief can discuss ideas and events irrespective of who they are or where they come from, etc.
    We all have opinions and these are going to be different and are arrived at in a huge variety of ways....everyones path is going to be a little different from the others.

    Certainly I don't agree with many people's opinions and I enjoy the act of discussing these things with them, but this activity is tainted the moment others start in with "who are you to say such things....what is your profession...." or nitpick on irrelevant side issues brought up in the post as if it has to be bullet proof.
    Sure that can be at times engaging and good to sharpen the skills, but it is wearisome when it is the constant and the norm.
     
  4. citizenzen

    citizenzen Custom User Title

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    I think it's more about honesty.

    You can't say an opinion is wrong... that's why they're called opinions.

    The only thing that gets to me (and shouldn't) is when people don't debate honestly.

    It's a fine line... but like pornography... I know it, when I see it.
     
  5. c0de

    c0de Vassal

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    Debates don't happen between opinions

    The happen between arguments.

    You should understand this.

    Great, so now your opposition is "dishonest" as well?


    on top of already being:
    • "retarded"
    • "pathetic" &
    • "schizophrenic"
    ??

    In other words, you can't prove your charge of dishonesty,
    but you have your "opinions" nonetheless.

    Thanks 4 ur insightful input.
     
  6. TripleGem

    TripleGem New Member

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    Interesting thread.
     
  7. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Hare Krishna Yogi

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    religio-tards seems like a term of endearment.

    Religio-nerds seems even more endearing.

    Criminal-tards is what we should be mindful of subsidising with taxes paid by surviving victims and their relatives.

    ...............................
    Does anyone read alternate meanings embedded unknowingly by me, it my statement?
     
  8. citizenzen

    citizenzen Custom User Title

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    Not only do I like paying taxes to support the society I enjoy living in, I don't mind that some of that money goes to housing criminals.

    But I'll meet you half-way... tax credits for crime victims.
     
  9. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Hare Krishna Yogi

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    "tax credits for crime victims."

    Yeah baby!

    Oy! Eventually the ratio of Tax-payer to criminal socio-path may not allow for sufficient funds to be collected. oh my. Who then will inherit the earth?

    [Dark humor? Or a status quo of "The cheaters & the cheated"]
     
  10. shawn

    shawn New Member

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    Unfortunately, none of the taxes you pay go to building a better society, they just go to paying the rent to the owners of the currency we use.
    The funds to build society are borrowed at interest after the fact based on the taxes to make it appear like the taxes are collected to achieve these goals.
     
  11. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Hi Shawn —

    Depends what you mean by 'science'? Do you include philosophy, theology, metaphysics? As a cradle-Catholic I lost my faith, then through philosophy, theology and metaphysics, I found my way to the reason of things ... so my return to Catholicism is founded on the scientific process.

    Takes all sorts, old bean.

    And, by the way, what about the arts? I think the arts have told us things science could never aspire to. Science might reveal the intricate workings of the human contraption, but it is the arts that reveal the human condition.

    It seems to me you're making the same unfounded assertions that some of my lot made a few hundred years ago: Because we know a lot about one thing, we assume we can speak with authority about everything.

    Big mistake.

    'Science' — and that really is an indeterminate term, but I assume you mean the empirical method — has proven itself so successful within its given field, measuring that which can be measured, that when it states, if it cannot be measured, it cannot exist ... is really over-stating the case, in my book.

    Even so, science has been wrong so often, and revised itself so often, that to make an absolute statement is scientifically indefensible. I have heard too many scientists say that nothing can be asserted absolutely, to treat your post as nothing more than evidence of one person's 'blind faith' in science.

    Thomas
     
  12. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Hare Krishna Yogi

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    Yeah, white collar criminals are the best. And they will send you a picture of your adopt-a-thief too!

    Bernie Madoff is a perrenial favorite by egalitarians and mafiosi world-wide, amongst other infamous singular figure-heads.

    Death penalties for the Un-doubtibly guilty [ie: Car Chases that are broadcast live; or any myraid of similar live broadcast criminal acts against society] is the most merciful option the State should pursue.

    But if a citisen thinks that the soul is a fleeting characture of a person's existance ---then such an opinion that capitol punishment is a "Sad" and "un-democratic" punishment ---because that person fears the lost of soul-hood of others.

    One should not fear loss of mortal existence when the material body is lost--- because the soul (conscious-life-force) is not slain when the body is slain.

    Those who say only God can end a life are simply motivated by their ego ---to not get further embroiled in an act (capitol punishment) that may again cause re-visteing the same victimsation in future.

    But capitol punishment avoids further accruement of sundry-forms of sin (ugra-karma, lit., petty/Funky-karma) to the criminal.

    Courts of law are for the determination of guilt.

    Creating a financial institution out of prison systems leads to monetary greed by their wardens.
     
  13. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Hare Krishna Yogi

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    Paying taxes is wonderful enterprise.

    "Paying taxes" seems like a dirty word because the fat-cats do dirty things with it.

    Stop doing dirty things with our taxes Mr Minister!

    We're stuck between a rock and a dirty tax collector!
     
  14. citizenzen

    citizenzen Custom User Title

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    Thomas, I believe that you are overstating the case. Please show where science states if it cannot be measured, it cannot exist.

    String theory is an example. Strings are so infinitesimally small that they can't be measured. Yet some scientists theorize their existence. Multiple universes cannot be measured. Yet some scientists theorize their existence.
    Dark Matter and Dark Energy have not been measured. Yet some scientists theorize their existence. We experience gravity as a overall force, but no scientist has been able to point to anything specific and say, "That is the cause of gravity".

    If you have 104 minutes, here is a brilliant example of how science deals with the immeasurable...

    (Don't sweat the first 2 minutes. Richard Dawkins is just introducing the main speaker.)

    [youtube]7ImvlS8PLIo[/youtube]
     
  15. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Yes, you're quite right. As penance I'm just about to engage in a second reading of the Marcus Chown books on Quantum Physics, brilliant.

    But I still believe it is Shawn who overstated.

    I actually bought Hawkins' "A Brief History of Time" ... and I actually read the thing. And his notion of not a point in time (the apex of the V from which everything pours out) but more a 'U' fits entirely with my Scripture-based belief system.

    I'll check out the clip.

    The easier answer is, of course, that many scientists are also religious believers. The Big bang Theory was proposed by a Belgian Dominican Monk.

    On another tack, I am working through a num,ber of papers that suggest there's more coherence between Platonic philosophy and Quantum Physics than there is between QP and an Aristotelian viewpoint.

    In short, traditional catholic Doctrine sits nicely in the Quantum world ...

    (Then again, I also suggested that QT is nothing more than the scientific community getting together to see just how big a nonsense they can convince us all to believe in .. a bottle of champagne to the most preposterous theory that we might embrace ... marcus Chown insists that if what we know is true, then somewhere in the Cosmos, Elvis is performing right this very minute ...

    Or maybe in my enthusiasm for the subject, I'm overstating again :D

    Thomas
     
  16. shawn

    shawn New Member

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    Science has been wrong before, and I do not have "blind faith" in much of anything, but, it has been the people who have become enamored with their pet theories who push them beyond what they are capable of doing that is the error.
    We have all seen how experiments and statistics can be slanted to favor an agenda or a bias.

    Really, what I have been doing in this thread is exploring an idea.
    I am not some fanatical scientist, and I am not a religionist.
    I believe in an open mind and I use the method of just tossing all the ideas on the table to see what we can see from them.
    Of course, our conclusions may be biased.
    But if one understands that from the outset, making corrections is not so difficult.

    I am seeking to uncover facts.
    Facts which can be demonstrated reliably which can help us all.
    Yes, I am stating a possible cause for a condition, but this is to get people thinking along a particular avenue.
    And it has raised a bit of a caustic response from some who seem to have invested emotional and sentimental energy into their chosen ideologies.
    This is part of the problem I am seeking to explore with this thread.
    Why do people do this?
    Especially when one considers the overall negative consequences this type of thinking has on human society and the development of a true civil-ization.
     
  17. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Hi Shawn —

    Here is where, I suppose, we part ways. Mine is the discovery of meaning. Different thing altogether.

    This may be a reaction to your own ideological position, and its unquestioned assumptions. To me it displays the same order of 'blind faith' you accuse others. You claim to be 'open minded', and yet you dismiss out of hand any other position than your own?

    I tend to regard it as the function of the rational intellect. Science is just one of the methods it deploys, but it's not the only method, and not the only methodology.

    This is patently not the case. Science has been just as guilty of fabricating falsehoods as any other human endeavour.

    Sorry, but this is myopic nonsense. Science has also brought us closer to extinction than any other human activity.

    So I suggest your view of science is largely fictitious, the product of a blind faith in empirical data.

    But that's my ideology speaking.

    Thomas
     
  18. citizenzen

    citizenzen Custom User Title

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    Hi Thomas,

    Speaking of myopia, you might want to focus your eyes on that keyboard you're typing on and the light that is illuminating the room you are in.

    When you're thirsty and decide to get a cold one, put on a pair of glasses and notice that big box called a refrigerator.

    Good eyesight is especially valuable when you travel by car. It also helps you see some spectacular sights when you travel by air... but that's actually more a matter of farsightedness and not myopia.

    And if anything happens to your sight beyond a bit of myopia, please note that the person you'll visit to fix the problem is a doctor and not a priest.

    I'd recommend a visit. It appears you're suffering from a bit of blindness.
     
  19. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Hare Krishna Yogi

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    The scientific-Method that citisenzen refers to is the very same scientific proceedure that is called a "Recipe". The un-carved block has all the potential to rendered into a usefull tool to accomplish a task --such ingenuity is simply "intelligence".

    Can be seen via a person that reports what is visable.

    Citisenzen, Do you know where the Gobi desert is? How do you know? Some guru told you ---and you have no other means of knowing. In all cases you are beholding to a person that relays knowledge to you ---thus, we are 99% in darkness of ignorance until we take knowledge from a disciplic chain of succession. That is the recipes passed down from ancestors.

    Science is the multiple superimposition of "Simply-Machines" one upon the other to form complex machines ---yet the simpliest mathamatics are never made obsolete.

    A "lever" is a Simply-Machine and it is an absolute cog in the wheel that has never needed change.

    You are referring to mechanisms & gadgets that are innovative yet supra-complicated.

    Now adays, we have engineers working overtime to "make life easier" ---YET, such so-called improvements leave 99% un-employed. IE: automated machines replace manpower with technicians. This is not Scientific advancement, this is private-interest-groups scheme to be rid of human-error.
     
  20. shawn

    shawn New Member

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    Through trial and error, sometimes trying an idea out 10's of thousands of times until just the right combination was found to actually work, people have pulled ourselves out of our primitive ways and have built a "modern" world.
    Amazing tools, technology and machines surround us, which we take for granted.

    Enlightened are our homes and cities and work places with the glow of scientifically devised mechanisms which illuminate our world.

    For anyone to say that such things are not advancements, or progress, they would have to be somewhat of a Luddite.

    We live longer thanks to science, not religion.
    Our work load is often lighter due to science and not religion.
    It is the premise of this thread that religion has served MORE as a device to hold people back than to hasten us forward.

    Our usage of Science has given us tools which can be mis-used and can utterly destroy us as a species and we see that religion, this alleged moral guide and wonderful peace bringer has instead pitted humanity against each other as we have divided up into diverse religious factions which are far from united in brotherhood and solidarity, instead we see people inflamed by their religious biases into hatred and violence towards those of "other" religions.
    This is the stupidity which can no longer be tolerated.
    These divisions must be stopped or they will destroy us all.

    (*And yes I know there are a lot of other side issues which can be brought in and I am generalizing to a degree, but there is a purpose to that. These side issues can often distract away from the reason for the discussion and this has happened in this thread already )
     

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