Ask an atheist

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Ask an atheist

Post by kait on Thu Dec 03, 2015 2:28 am

Ask anything. Challenge anything. I'd love to talk with you about my worldview or spiritual journey.
avatar
kait
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 42
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Isaiah the Ox on Thu Dec 03, 2015 5:16 am

In youth group last night, someone asked: "Should a "true athiest" observe Christmas?" The reply was: "No... but I guess they can celebrate Santa Day." (I figured Countess would have loved that Tongue out ) What do you think of this discussion?
avatar
Isaiah the Ox
Administrator

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 98
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by kait on Thu Dec 03, 2015 3:54 pm

Well first off, the idea of there being "true atheists" in the first place is kind of laughable. Wink Being an atheist just means you don't believe in the existence of a god. That's really it. 

There's a lot of evidence to suggest that Christmas isn't original to Christianity. Or at the very least, Christmas-like holidays certainly are widespread across many religions and cultures that predate Christianity. So the idea that a celebration such as Christmas should be reserved for Christians only also strikes me as somewhat silly. Especially considering how widely secular Christmas has become in our country. It is perfectly possible to celebrate Christmas without celebrating it as the birth of Jesus. And even so, I plan to teach my daughter what Christians believe about Christmas and how others celebrate it. I'll teach her the Christian mythology surrounding the holiday and we'll learn about it. 

i actually didn't celebrate Christmas from about the age of 12 to 19. My family believed the origins were pagan and Jesus wasn't born in December anyway. And we believed in celebrating the feasts and festivals outlined by God himself, not man-made ones. So. Celebrating Christmas is still relatively new to me anyway. Last year was the first year I had a Christmas tree in more than a decade Tongue out 

Don't have to believe in god to celebrate Christmas. Although notably I do know many atheists who don't celebrate Christmas.
avatar
kait
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 42
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Isaiah the Ox on Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:31 pm

Haha, that was basically my opinion also. My Youth Leader sometimes has good things to say, but sometimes I just blink twice and hope nobody takes her seriously. Tongue out Like, one time, she applauded another kid for purposely failing their science test on Evolution. Anxious Rolling Eyes

But, ANYWAY, so you will talk to you daughter about religion as well (I mean, I'm sure you would a little, but..)?

What do you think is the biggest misconception Protestants (or whatever Christian group you are most familiar with) have with atheists?

Do you think you would/could accept another religion, other than Christianity? Or is the existence of a Greater Being totally disproved in your mind? 

And finally, from your experience, what is the "best" religion? Meaning, you would agree with or encourage the religion's actions/practices.
avatar
Isaiah the Ox
Administrator

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 98
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by kait on Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:54 pm

I will. I plan to teach her about as many religions as I can, though. I really believe a healthy view and knowledge of as many religions as you can learn about is really important. 

Probably that they view "atheists" and "atheism" as a monolith. Honestly I've found that a lot of Christians (especially those who grew up Christian) view atheism the same way they view, say, a religious denomination. They think we all have the same or similar worldviews or political beliefs. They assume we believe certain things or behave certain ways ... because that's the kind of structure they're used to. If you are "Southern baptist," while no two people are the exact same, there are more similarities between beliefs, world views and behaviors than there are differences in many cases. I mean, Christians are all working from the same source material so there is bound to be a million similarities in those things. 

So somehow they view atheism the same way. When really, literally the ONLY thing tying atheists together is a mutual non-belief in any deities. That is it. Some atheists are buddhist. Some atheists are anti-abortion. Some atheists believe in spanking kids. Some atheists don't think dating is the way to approach relationships. Some atheists think climate change is a hoax. 

Like... "atheists" as a group aren't monolithic at all. And I find that is a common misconception. If that makes sense. 

The existence of a higher power, god, whatever you want to call it is disproved by virtue of the fact it has not and really cannot BE proved. So if it can't be proved I don't really feel like it's something I should base my life around. That said, I've always been very drawn to Buddhism and Buddhism and atheism actually are able to co-exist very nicely. Most of the tenants of Buddhism don't require supernatural beliefs. 

The aforementioned Buddhism. I also have a very near and dear love of Judaism. Although some branches of Judaism are certainly just as toxic as fundamentalist Christianity.
avatar
kait
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 42
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by JMPStone on Fri Dec 04, 2015 4:13 pm

So, without a God or any deities what is the meaning of our life?

Who are we to define something as right or wrong?

Is life pointless if there's no reason for us being in existence?

Do you think our actions should be held accountable to us if there is no God?

JMPStone
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 1
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Pound Cake on Sun Dec 06, 2015 8:56 pm

Ho did the universe come to be?
avatar
Pound Cake
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 57
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by kait on Thu Dec 24, 2015 2:53 pm

@JMPStone wrote:So, without a God or any deities what is the meaning of our life?

Who are we to define something as right or wrong?

Is life pointless if there's no reason for us being in existence?

Do you think our actions should be held accountable to us if there is no God?

Why do you think someone would need to believe in a god in order to find meaning in life? I find meaning in how I live my life, I find meaning in my relationships with people in my life, I find meaning in a beautiful sunrise or an adorable baby bunny. I find meaning in all aspects of life ... I don't need a god for that. 

Well I've lived 25 years and I'd say I'm pretty capable of defining right and wrong by this point. It's pretty easy to evaluate right and wrong based on how your actions or words affect others. I'm curious if the only reason you aren't murdering and pillaging is because you think there is a higher being commanding you not to? If you suddenly were presented with irrefutable proof that God is not real would you then turn around and start killing people because your entire moral fabric has sloughed off? 
If no: Then maybe perhaps humans are entirely capable of possessing a system of morals that isn't dependent on the existence of a god? 
If yes: People like that scare me. 

I don't think so. There may not be some higher or transcendent purpose for us being here, but that doesn't mean life is meaningless or pointless. And even if life IS entirely pointless, I'm not sure that is necessarily a bad thing. 

Yes ... I'm not sure why there being a god would make a difference with whether or not a person should be held accountable for their actions. And again, if you suddenly found yourself not believing in God, would you suddenly think people shouldn't be held accountable for their actions?


@Pound Cake wrote:How did the universe come to be?
I don't know. There are a few scientific models that have possible explanations, the most infamous of which is "the Big Bang theory," but there are others, a few more recent that present different scenarios for the origin of the universe and explain more things than the Big Bang model does. 

I am not, however, an astrophysicist or scientist on any level so I can't offer you in depth explanations. But Google is great if you want to learn more. Wink
avatar
kait
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 42
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Pound Cake on Sat Dec 26, 2015 7:44 pm

Well, my problem is those models, so far as I know which isn't very far, don't directly address the eventual lack of a cause. That is, all things rely on another for existence. Fine, Big Bang, but what before that? And before that? There has to be something, some sort of cause, that was not reliant on anything else for existence. 

Stephen Hawking and others assert some things don't have a cause. They point to things like time (it's possible time as a quantity did not exist before the Big Bang) and spontaneous emission, saying they don't seem to have a cause. But we know little about time, in fact it can be argued we cannot properly speaking study time as we can't experiment with it. As for spontaneous emission, the study of atoms is relatively young. It's rather early to throw science and basic physics out the window and declare something to have no cause because we, brilliant though we always are, cannot detect one.

So far as we know all things require a cause, thus necessitating something outside of this world and its laws, something outside of the need for a cause. Correct? Do you grant that?
avatar
Pound Cake
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 57
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by kait on Sat Dec 26, 2015 10:25 pm

You are correct that many of the current models don't address the basic underlying question of where the universe came from. Where the matter came from that caused the big bang that created the universe, etc. Which is to say at this point in time: science doesn't know. Which means we don't know.

You're using the "first cause" argument for God here and it isn't a particularly good one. Basically you are leading us down the road to this: "Science doesn't know what caused the universe, thus it was God." But that doesn't answer the question, it begs the question.

If your premise is that everything has a cause and God caused the universe, then we HAVE to ask: What caused God? And your answer would be that God is infinite and he's always existed. So you haven't actually answered the question. You've just moved it back a notch and then cut off all further inquiry by pulling out the "God is infinite" card.

There are many, many scientists who believe the question of where the universe came from IS answerable. They are dedicating their life's work to answering it, in fact. But science takes time. And the answer to that question could very well revolutionize our understanding of the universe. Much like Einstein revolutionized our understanding of matter and energy. And Galileo's theories revolutionized our basic understandings of the structure of the universe.

But "God did it" isn't an answer. To say that "Everything has a cause except God who by definition isn't caused by anything" isn't an answer. It suggests every question has a logical, comprehensible answer EXCEPT questions about God which are just inherently unanswerable by nature.

It is a "God of the gaps" argument. Where the basic suggestion is "We don't know the answer to [thing x] yet, thus the answer is God." And that answer has never been right in the past. Why the sun rises every day, why people get sick, why children look like their parents, why there are so many species, why something will fall when you drop it ... all of those were, at one point or another in history answered by "Well God does it." (Or insert higher being of choice). And yet, through scientific inquiry, we have actually discovered answers for all those questions. So why would we assume that currently unanswered questions don't have a tangible answer and thus must be answered with "God?"

Someday we might be able to answer "where did the universe come from?" Until then, I prefer not to insert an answer that has no evidence for it and instead say "I don't know" and wait on people who are a whole lot smarter than I am to figure it out.
avatar
kait
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 42
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Pound Cake on Sun Dec 27, 2015 11:18 am

@Kait wrote: Basically you are leading us down the road to this: "Science doesn't know what caused the universe, thus it was God." But that doesn't answer the question, it begs the question. 
Good putt, straight to hole, but it flew right over. Those inferences would not have led to God exactly just yet, if at all.

@Kait wrote:If your premise is that everything has a cause and God caused the universe, then we HAVE to ask: What caused God? And your answer would be that God is infinite and he's always existed. So you haven't actually answered the question.
No. The premise to come would have been, if everything in the universe is caused, the original cause must be apart from our universe, exempt from its laws. It must, rather than existing as part of the chain we know, be outside of it as an author is from a completed book. In other words, while it started the chain of events, it is not part of the chain itself.
@Kait wrote:It is a "God of the gaps" argument. 
Yes, that argument, the one you made, is . If we eliminate other answers, that does not necessarily necessitate a remaining answer being correct, to be sure. There is no more reason to assume the something outside of our universe is God, anymore than a tea cup.  The point here is the principle. The principle is this.
If all things in the universe require a cause according to science, and therefore cannot go infinitely backward, there must have been something outside of science that caused the universe.  Something in an entirely different realm. Do you grant that?
avatar
Pound Cake
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 57
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Isaiah the Ox on Sun Dec 27, 2015 12:53 pm

What do you think of the multiverse theory?

Why do religions exist?

What is the best and worse parts of Christianity? 

What draws you to Judaism? 

Are the different races caused by how evolved a(n) human is?

What would make you change your mind?
avatar
Isaiah the Ox
Administrator

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 98
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by kait on Sun Dec 27, 2015 4:38 pm

Alright. I apologize for jumping the gun and assuming your argument before you have made it. Let us proceed, then.

@Pound Cake wrote:If all things in the universe require a cause according to science, and therefore cannot go infinitely backward, there must have been something outside of science that caused the universe.  Something in an entirely different realm. Do you grant that?

You are correct that the laws of thermodynamics, the laws of cause and effect, exist within our universe. These conclusions are limited by our ability to observe the universe as it currently exists. Prior to the point of the big bang (if prior is even the correct word because that's a time delineation), we don't yet have a way of determining what did or did not exist or whether our current understanding of the rules would have applied. Given that our current understanding of time and space *may or may not have applied* before the big bang, we really can't assume the laws of thermodynamics would have been the same.

So yes, I can definitely grant that all things in our universe require a cause according to science. But to then extrapolate that and apply it to things outside of or before our universe to conclude that absolutely the universe must have been caused isn't something I can necessarily agree to, because we have no way of knowing whether the laws of cause and effect would apply.

So I can't accept your premise exactly as you have worded it, but I can grant you the following for the sake of continuing the discussion. I've also included some parentheticals to ensure you understand exactly what I'm agreeing to:

If all things in the universe (as we currently understand it) require a cause according to science, and therefore (our universe and the things within it) cannot go infinitely backward. There (may) have been something (or somethings) outside of (our scientific understanding) that caused the universe.  Something (or somethings) in an entirely different realm.
(if we are defining 'different realm' as 'not our universe)

Ox wrote:What do you think of the multiverse theory?
It kind of makes my brain explode a little.

Ox wrote:Why do religions exist?
I'm not really necessarily qualified to offer super good answers to this, but it seems to me that religions began as a part of human attempts to understand the world around them.

Ox wrote:What is the best and worse parts of Christianity?
Hm. Not necessarily sure what is meant by this question. Like ... there are best and worst parts of the Bible, there are best and worst theological ideas, etc. But I guess to me, any part of Christianity that suggests putting dogma, theology or a belief before people is a "worst" part. And any part of Christianity that puts people first is a "best" part.

Ox wrote:What draws you to Judaism?
Primarily their belief that every person is created in the image of God, and thus is created with a "spark of the divine" within them and humans are, simply put, inherently good. I also just really love their deep and longstanding traditions, liturgy and symbolism.

Ox wrote:Are the different races caused by how evolved a(n) human is?
No? Evolution isn't a straight line that means one species or variation within that species is "more" or "less" evolved or "better" or "worse." It's more like a giant tree with billions of branches. Also, race is a social construct based on a single varying phenotype — skin color. There is actually far more variation within different racial groups than there are between different racial groups.

Ox wrote:What would make you change your mind?
One or more of the following would go a heck of a long way in convincing me. Notably, I am stealing the exposition from this article because there's no sense rewriting what someone else has already written. Tongue out

—Verified, specific prophecies that couldn’t have been contrived.
Spoiler:

article wrote:No points are awarded under any of the following conditions:
- If the prophecy is vague, unclear or garbled (like Nostradamus’ ramblings, for example). It must be detailed, specific and unambiguous in its prediction and wording.
- If the prophecy is trivial. Anyone could predict that it will be cold next winter, or that this drought/plague/flood will eventually subside. The prophecy must predict something surprising, unlikely or unique.
- If the prophecy is obviously contrived for other reasons. No official seer or court astrologer ever predicted that the king he worked for would be a brutal, evil tyrant who would ruin the country.
- If the prophecy is self-fulfilling; i.e., if the mere fact of the prophecy’s existence could cause people to make it come true. The Jewish people returned to their homeland in Israel just as the Bible said they would, but this isn’t a genuine prediction – they did it because the Bible said they would. The predicted event can’t be one that people could stage.
- If the prophecy predicts an event that already happened and the writing of the prophecy itself can’t be shown to have preceded the event.
- If the prophecy predicts an event that already happened and the happening of that event can’t be verified by independent evidence. For example, Christian apologists claim that Jesus fulfilled many Old Testament prophecies, but the authors of the New Testament obviously had access to those prophecies also; what would have prevented them from writing their story to conform to them? The extra-biblical evidence for the existence of Jesus is so scanty that it is impossible to disprove such a proposal.
- And finally, if the prophecy is the lone success among a thousand failures. Anyone can throw prophecies against the wall until one sticks. The book or other source from which it comes must have at least a decently good record on other predictions.

These conditions, I think, are eminently reasonable, and are only what would be expected of a true prophet with a genuine gift.
—Scientific knowledge in holy books that wasn’t available at the time.
Spoiler:

article wrote:If the Bible (or any other religious text) contained some piece of knowledge that the people of the time couldn’t possibly have known but that is now known to be true, that would be highly convincing to me. A passage about the atomic theory of matter or the heliocentric solar system would be interesting, but not conclusive, since the Greeks, for example, proposed those ideas long ago independent of any claim to divine revelation. A mention of the theory of evolution would have been impressive. A reference to the germ theory of disease, or the laws of electromagnetics, would have been compelling. But what would be indisputable proof would be an elucidation of a truly modern theory of physics, such as relativity or quantum mechanics – not just something that the people of the time couldn’t possibly have known of, but something so counter-intuitive that the odds against guessing at it correctly would be staggering. Just think: What if Jesus had said something like this?
“Verily, verily, I say unto thee that thine energy is as thine mass times the speed of light multiplied unto itself.”
Of course people of the time would have been baffled, but just imagine how many souls it would have saved today. As with the prophecy item, there must be independent verification that the piece of knowledge was written in texts that existed well before it was actually discovered by science.
—Miracles brought about through prayer.
Spoiler:

article wrote:If a hospital did a double-blind study to determine if intercessory prayer helps the sick, and it was discovered that only the patients prayed for by members of a certain religion experienced a dramatic, statistically significant increase in recovery rate, and this result could be repeated and confirmed, I would convert. This one shouldn’t be so hard, especially for the Christians – after all, Jesus told them that they would be able to work miracles through prayer!
—Any direct, verifiable manifestation of the divine.
Spoiler:

article wrote:I’m not that hard to convert; I’ll be happy to believe in God if he tells me to in person, as long as he does it in such a way that I could be sure that it was not a hallucination (for example, in the presence of multiple reliable witnesses, none of whom are in a highly emotional or otherwise altered state). Where are the voices speaking out of burning bushes, or out of thin air when people get baptized? In Old Testament times, Moses saw God so often that he knew him on a first-name basis. Why doesn’t this happen any more today?


Last edited by kait on Fri Jan 01, 2016 12:39 am; edited 1 time in total
avatar
kait
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 42
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Isaiah the Ox on Thu Dec 31, 2015 4:04 pm

Hmmm, so you don't find any of the first two in the Bible?

Have you read any Biblical Concordists who do see major scientific discoveries in the Bible?

As for the last two, you need real scientific proof God exists, I'm guessing? You need a real touch, or a real survey that proves prayer works?

Are the Biblical stories real history?

Was Jesus a real person?

When do you think the Bible was written? (what is the history of it?)

(btw, haha at the "brain explode" part. Science does that at times. Laughing (or scientific theories...))
avatar
Isaiah the Ox
Administrator

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 98
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Pound Cake on Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:27 pm



So yes, I can definitely grant that all things in our universe require a cause according to science. But to then extrapolate that and apply it to things outside of or before our universe to conclude that absolutely the universe must have been caused isn't something I can necessarily agree to, because we have no way of knowing whether the laws of cause and effect would apply
Surely whatever led to a world where one cause leads to an effect worked by the law of cause and effect. The effect cannot be greater than the cause.

Further, while perhaps nothing prevents there being a thing or place before the universe where things weren't caused, nothing we have suggests that. On the contrary, the data we have says all things are caused. To say that things might have worked that way while science says nothing works that way and indeed things cannot work that way seems rather a shaky claim.
avatar
Pound Cake
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 57
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by kait on Fri Jan 01, 2016 1:07 am

@Isaiah the Ox wrote:Hmmm, so you don't find any of the first two in the Bible?

Have you read any Biblical Concordists who do see major scientific discoveries in the Bible?

As for the last two, you need real scientific proof God exists, I'm guessing? You need a real touch, or a real survey that proves prayer works?

Are the Biblical stories real history?

Was Jesus a real person?

When do you think the Bible was written? (what is the history of it?)

(btw, haha at the "brain explode" part. Science does that at times. Laughing (or scientific theories...))
I don't. 

I have seen a few of those kinds of things. And I've yet to read anything that didn't just seem like a giant, huge, leaping stretch. I don't know if they were written by concordists, though. 

Not necessarily. I think some of the stories have roots in historical events but I don't consider all of the bible stories to be historical fact. 

I don't really see any reason to think he wasn't, although the evidence for his existence is kind of slim. 

I don't remember specifics of things like dates and whatnots very well at all. I'd only be Googling for scholarly material or referencing my college textbooks to answer this question. Different parts of the bible were written at different times and there are definitely biblical and historical scholars out there who can answer this question a whole lot better.

@Pound Cake wrote:
Surely whatever led to a world where one cause leads to an effect worked by the law of cause and effect. The effect cannot be greater than the cause.

The point is we just don't know what happened to cause our universe, if it was caused, or what existed before it. Science at this point has zero intel on that. And because the laws of our universe only apply to our universe, we cannot definitively say that YES FOR SURE our universe was caused visa vis the laws of cause and effect because we have literally no way of knowing at this point whether those laws would be the same outside of or before our universe. You are making leaps here by applying the laws of our universe to things outside of it when there is no way of knowing if that would be the case. 

@Pound Cake wrote:
Further, while perhaps nothing prevents there being a thing or place before the universe where things weren't caused, nothing we have suggests that.

OK, but nothing we have suggests the laws of cause and effect applied before our universe because we have no knowledge of what existed before our universe. 


@Pound Cake wrote:
On the contrary, the data we have says all things are caused.

Again, this "data we have" ONLY APPLIES to our universe as we know it. We don't have data on anything before our universe or outside of it. 

@Pound Cake wrote:
To say that things might have worked that way while science says nothing works that way and indeed things cannot work that way seems rather a shaky claim.
Ugh. I'm not sure how many different ways I can say this or how many times I can repeat it. Science HAS NO CLAIMS about things that came before our universe or outside our universe or what "caused" our universe (there might be hypothesis and models but we are a long, long way from science knowing much about what happened before our universe). And that's all I'm saying. It has no claims. There are non. So to make a definitive claim that yes definitely no doubt the laws of cause and effect applied before our universe existed is not possible. And I'm not comfortable with making that definitive claim. To just assume with no other evidence that the laws observed in our universe also apply beyond our universe is far more shaky in my opinion than just saying "we don't know."

TL;DR My claim is that there is no claim because we have zero knowledge of what came before our universe. I'm not sure how refusing to make a claim that's based on no evidence is "shaky."

ETA: Also, this is why I quasi-granted your claim in my previous post so you could move on with whatever line of reasoning you wanted to bring me down and we didn't get bogged down in this. Wink Are you not OK with agreeing to this as a starting point?:

If all things in the universe (as we currently understand it) require a cause according to science, and therefore (our universe and the things within it) cannot go infinitely backward. There (may) have been something (or somethings) outside of (our scientific understanding) that caused the universe.  Something (or somethings) in an entirely different realm.
(if we are defining 'different realm' as 'not our universe)
avatar
kait
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 42
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Pound Cake on Tue Jan 05, 2016 1:39 pm

We can use that as a starting point, sure. You granted the universe, quote, "may" have a cause. You stated your reasons why you it only may have had one. So we are trying to remove that may. If that bothers you too much, perhaps we can move on, but for now the arguments below are my reply.

You claim whatever is outside of the universe may be outside of logic and the laws of science. But isn't that a skeptical threat argument? The problem with this type of argument it's indefensible- the only you can defend the claim is through logic, but the claim is that logic doesn't apply to a certain setting or may not exist in a certain setting.

Further, to claim whatever came before the Big Bang might be unlike our own in its ways and science seems to violate the metaphysical principle. That is, that logical laws are universal, existing across all universes and existence. To claim logic doesn't exist across all existence requires a hefty burden of proof.
avatar
Pound Cake
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 57
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by kait on Tue Jan 05, 2016 5:54 pm

@Pound Cake wrote:We can use that as a starting point, sure. You granted the universe, quote, "may" have a cause. You stated your reasons why you it only may have had one. So we are trying to remove that may. If that bothers you too much, perhaps we can move on, but for now the arguments below are my reply.
It might be best to move on, if you can continue with your points based on that not being definitive, because I probably won't ever be convinced to make definitive statements based on no evidence. Tongue out

However, I suppose I'd also be willing to grant your original claim for the sake of this discussion with the understanding I don't actually agree with it the way it's written. Tongue out But I suppose there isn't any reason not to follow it through to its conclusion.

@Pound Cake wrote:You claim whatever is outside of the universe may be outside of logic and the laws of science. But isn't that a skeptical threat argument?
Ok. No. Not exactly. I have first off made no claims Re: logic. Logic and science aren't the same thing. I have claimed that whatever happened "before" our universe began falls outside of our current scientific understanding. Because it does. Please point to scientific evidence of what came before our universe if this is not the case. I'm also saying we cannot claim that it would necessarily follow our current laws of thermodynamics because we have no evidence to suggest that laws based only on our observations of our universe would apply to anything outside of that universe as we currently have no way to test or know whether they would apply before our universe. I am NOT making a definitive claim either way on this. I'm not saying the laws would definitely not apply, I'm saying we can't say for sure one way or the other because we have no evidence either way to suggest anything and I am not comfortable just assuming things.  (Hence the "may" in the wording of the claim)

@Pound Cake wrote:The problem with this type of argument it's indefensible- the only you can defend the claim is through logic, but the claim is that logic doesn't apply to a certain setting or may not exist in a certain setting.
Again I have made no claims regarding logic, lol. This isn't an argument based on logic, it's an argument based on scientific evidence. I thought we were talking about the laws of thermodynamics in science? That isn't logic. It might be more useful if we didn't conflate terms. YOU are the one making the definitive claim that the laws of thermodynamics would apply outside of our universe. But those laws are only based on our observable universe. So yes, I am saying we cannot make the definitive claim that Thing A that we have ONLY OBSERVED in Sphere A, would necessarily exist in Sphere B when we have literally no evidence of Sphere B. Again, this is science we are talking about. Scientific claims are made via the scientific method and ultimately based on evidence. They aren't based on logic. What is logical isn't always true or scientifically accurate. Logic is a branch of philosophy and does not equal science or the scientific method.

Example:
All creatures on four legs are reptiles.
Cats walk on four legs.
Cats are reptiles.

That statement is valid logically, but we know it is not true.

@Pound Cake wrote:That is, that logical laws are universal, existing across all universes and existence. To claim logic doesn't exist across all existence requires a hefty burden of proof.

Again this discussion isn't about logic, as I outlined above. It's about science and scientific evidence. I'm claiming that the scientific evidence we have, which is based only on observations of our universe do not necessarily apply outside of that universe. And we cannot claim for sure that they do because there is no evidence to suggest that.

Can you please define the "laws of logic" you mention? And you do understand the laws of logic serve as the basis for logical thought not as the basis for the laws of science? Because I get the feeling there is just a massive misunderstanding going on between us in regard to science v. logic. You so far have not presented any scientific evidence that the laws of our universe would apply outside of or before it (which isn't your fault because scientists literally have been unable to get to that point with formulas, algorithms or models). All you've said is that "it's logical" or that "we can assume" and the like. And as in my example above, because something is logically valid does NOT mean it is true or scientifically valid. The two concepts aren't the same thing.
avatar
kait
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 42
Female

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Pound Cake on Tue Jan 19, 2016 11:56 am

Sorry. Jumping from science to logic was too abrupt and did indeed require explanation.
To define laws of logic, logic is by nature a process, right? That is, one thing leading to another right? So how could logic even exist in a, let's call it, Causeless Universe. How could logic, a process, exist in a Causeless Universe? As you say, "All creatures on four legs are reptiles. 
Cats walk on four legs. 
Cats are reptiles.")
 Each claim rests on the other, each causes the other exist. Plus, even before the process of logic itself, logic comes from a question. That is, the chain of reasoning results from, is caused by, a question. Further, even before that, logical thought is caused by activity in our frontal lobe which is cause by neurons and so forth. Logic itself is cause and effect. So that's why your argument sounds like skeptical threat.

Still though, looking into this online, it may as well be admitted, it looks like you're probably right. The universe may require a cause and may not. That's not to concede just yet, it would still be interesting to see how you answer the above, but we might have to proceed with that, "may."
avatar
Pound Cake
Apprentice

Status :
Online
Offline

Posts : 57
Male

Back to top Go down

Re: Ask an atheist

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum