Darwin's God

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by flowperson, Mar 6, 2007.

  1. flowperson

    flowperson Oannes

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    The NY Times magazine may be unparalled in occasionally examining the great issues of our lives. This article appeared in last Sunday's version, and it addressses many of the issues that we all wrestle with here and in our lives each day. Enjoy and discuss at your choice.

    I realize that many of these issues were aired here in the past, but revisiting them should be pursued from time to time IMHO.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/04/magazine/04evolution.t.html?ei=5087%OA&em=&en=166dbd9e75680e73&ex==1173243600&pagewanted=all

    flow....:)
     
  2. YO-ELEVEN-11

    YO-ELEVEN-11 Watcher

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    Does the GOD gene ring a bell.
    :D
     
  3. sara[h]ng

    sara[h]ng New Member

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    While I don't personally believe that most 'humans believe in God solely because of some situation that made/makes them believe in it (evolutionary selection, as the article talks about, being 'hard-wired' to do so, or whatever else)' as opposed to 'they believe in God because God exists', I do see why people would think that there's a totally scientific, material answer, so it seems to be worth thinking about or discussing.

    The article does focus entirely upon finding a reason that evolution would or could (in the case of a 'spandrel') provide for humankind believing in some God figure. The question that I have is that I don't see that there necessarily has to be an evolutionary beginning or explanation. Isn't a social one enough? By social I am referring to all of several different things such as some wise guy deciding that he can gain materially and socially by convincing people that he's some sort of middleman to a higher power - thus a religion is born, people seeking explanations for or some sort of control over natural phenomenon, or people in bad situations comforting themselves that they have something better after death and that the people who put them in bad situations will get their due.

    ... hm.
     
  4. Thomas

    Thomas Super Moderator Staff Member

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    whatever you call it, there seems an inherent human drive to believe in something transcendent, unfathomable and otherworldly, something beyond the reach or understanding of science.

    Aristotle was not the first to posit the idea that science is not the be-all and end-all of human knowledge ... but it would appear to many today that science seems to refute the idea of anything existing beyond its understanding, or rationalises it, to make it fit a given scientific paradigm?

    Why must everything be within the scope of understanding of science? And let us not forget:

    Darwin was a Christian,
    Many scientists have a religious belief...

    So perhaps we should say "something beyond the reach or understanding of science if the scientist in question does not believe that anything lies beyond his reach" and here, surely, Quantum physics would say that the argument is flawed?

    Just some thoughts ...

    Thomas
     
  5. cyberpi

    cyberpi Interfaith Forums

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    I have lived most of this life developing a purely physical model in my mind by studying math, science, and engineering, and some arts or social 'sciences'. I do think it would have been better to study, believe, and start forming a metaphysical model earlier. To children, the whole world is alien and metaphysical... so maybe it was more a matter of temporarily losing something.

    You can see that science is imperfect alone by the word and concept of 'history'. Some history is known to have occured, but it is lost so that you can no longer measure it. There is a huge history that no physical science can ever measure. That history is a treasure... and it is still physically there! But nothing physical can measure it. At best an imperfect memory can be kept as a momento that is repeatedly measured until it too disappears. The real history is a treasure. Science is only for what you can measure more than once, so science can not measure the real history. Furthermore, all measurement creates a history that adds to the history.

    I can see how my younger self would tell my older self that you are imagining a pipe dream. Maybe my response would be... what is anything going to be worth doing if everything were to eventually be lost? I love science the way I love the eyes and ears, but it is not everything.
     
  6. Thomas

    Thomas Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Hi cyberpi –

    You will forgive me if I fail to recollect having had an exchange with you before, but of late I have wanted to ask ... have you changed, or am I reading you differently?

    If the latter, then apologies for a disservice I have done to you, if the former, then can I say that I am still not sure 'where you're coming from' ... but it's certainly a place I'd like to know better.

    Your pen-ink-paper analogy still lives with me ... as will what you have just written.

    If Tariki reads this ... then your (Tariki's) 'hearing' analogy leaps to the fore.

    Thomas
     
  7. flowperson

    flowperson Oannes

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    Hello All:

    Wonderful comments and I can see everyone's viewpoint here. But I guess I would lean towards Thomas' take that there is an unexplainable (under current scientific understandings) transcendance that draws us onward towards it in time. And more people than not seem to see this transcendance as a loving power having to do with light.

    But then there's a guy on another site I visit that believes that we are all immersed in universal harmonizing energy flows like pebbles in a stream, and I am able to "see" it all that way too.

    That's how I see it. Trying to unravel the great dark ball of reality-twine over time keeps informing us of newer aspects of the environs we inhabit, but it will likely never ALL be known by our species. There will always be those who intuit reality on their individual terms, and also those who insist on some sort of proof. Both are in our collective measure in different admixtures. Woe is us... for the eternal conversation seems bound to continue.

    Thanks to all again.

    flow....;)
     
  8. cyberpi

    cyberpi Interfaith Forums

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    Thomas,
    No forgiveness necessary for anything in any exchange with me, or for not having an exchange... it would be a burden alone to apologize to 6.5 billion on the planet. I read most of your posts in threads that I picked up and I agreed or was busy interacting with something else.

    Me change? Something changes with every heartbeat. The concept I was pressing is not new but I think it is an important one that adjusted a number of bible words and concepts for me. Some verses of the record kept are in: Matthew 5:18, 10:30, 12:36, 24:35, Luke 21:18, 21:33, Mark 13:31, etc...

    On this thread I read your words but I was generically adding to the thread. When I said 'you' I meant my younger self talking to me. I suggest the Proverb in Tariki's post refers to answering questions truthfully. I often direct words for anyone who will hear. If I were to wait until I shed all of my ignorance then I would die without ever saying a word.
     

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