Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

A just-so story about the origin of religious beliefs

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This one is about stones:

By 500,000 years ago, Homo had mastered the skill of shaping stone, bone, hides, horns, and wood into dozens of tool types. Some of these tools were so symmetrical and aesthetically pleasing that some scientists speculate toolmaking took on a ritual aspect that connected Homo artisans with their traditions and community. These ritualistic behaviors may have evolved, hundreds of thousands of years later, into the rituals we see in religions.

Agustín Fuentes, “How Did Belief Evolve?” at Sapiens

Some of us would be more impressed if the authors of this type of work attributed their own beliefs to these types of sources.

How about this: Belief that there is no design in nature comes from spending a lot of time reading boring useless papers and sitting in boring useless meetings, Eventually, homo academicus evolved to believe that all nature is like that.

There’s that’s a good enough thesis. Let’s publish it. But first we need to find a journal that is not run by homo academicus himself. Nah. Let’s do a Sokal hoax on this stuff instead. Any ideas?

See also: If naturalism can explain religion, why does it get so many basic facts wrong?

Evolutionary conundrum: is religion a useful, useless, or harmful adaptation?

and

Imagine a world of religions that naturalism might indeed be able to explain

Comments
TF
If I told you that I have consensual sex with my dad (both adults): would you say it is ‘fine’?
How long have you been having sex wth your dad? Does your mom know?Ed George
March 10, 2020
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@260 JVL
Truthfreedom: According to the Grants, it never had a real, scientific name. Big Bird then and Big Bird now. 5-year-olds playing ‘doctor’. Linnaeus is rolling over in his grave.
JVL: Whatever
. That is not an argument. Neither is okay. You are conceding the point.
Truthfreedom: If I told you that I have consensual sex with my dad (both adults): would you say it is ‘fine’?
This has nothing to do with my original comment. I’m sorry I even made it. You want to go through tons of weird and dodgy behaviour to prove that, deep down, I think most anything is okay and that proves how awful materialism is. I never even said I was a materialist. And I don’t feel like playing your game anymore.
So because you can not defend your argument, I am 'playing games'? You give up way too easily. Prove me wrong with arguments. If my logic does not stand on its own, I will concede the point. Right now you are being emotional, not fair.Truthfreedom
March 10, 2020
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"I’m not going to play along anymore." Don't worry, JVL. We already knew you were never interested in a serious conversation. Andrewasauber
March 10, 2020
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The slippery slope already exists. And that is thanks to people like you and "Ed George"ET
March 10, 2020
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I don't have issues. I do my best to support and take care of other people, to respect them and let them have autonomy. I try hard not to judge others unless they are hurting other people. You guys just want to make any kind of concession the start of some slippery slope that leads to depravity. I'm not going to play along anymore.JVL
March 10, 2020
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Truthfreedom: According to the Grants, it never had a real, scientific name. Big Bird then and Big Bird now. 5-year-olds playing ‘doctor’. Linnaeus is rolling over in his grave. Whatever. If I told you that I have consensual sex with my dad (both adults): would you say it is ‘fine’? This has nothing to do with my original comment. I'm sorry I even made it. You want to go through tons of weird and dodgy behaviour to prove that, deep down, I think most anything is okay and that proves how awful materialism is. I never even said I was a materialist. And I don't feel like playing your game anymore.JVL
March 10, 2020
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@255 JVL:
Homosexuality between two consenting adults is just fine as far as I am concerned.
If I told you that I have consensual sex with my dad (both adults): would you say it is 'fine'?Truthfreedom
March 10, 2020
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@253 JVL
Truthfreedom: That shows that this alleged (not proved) new ‘species’ does not even have a name. I have been searching and it is still Big Bird. That is not even scientific nomenclature. It reminds me of a 5-year-old playing ‘doctor’. Big Bird? Really?
JVL: I don’t know why there is no name. Maybe the new species designation was mistaken in which case you should be able to find a retraction.
According to the Grants, it never had a real, scientific name. Big Bird then and Big Bird now. 5-year-olds playing 'doctor'. Linnaeus is rolling over in his grave.Truthfreedom
March 10, 2020
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Also the other issues are relevant because why do we have to stop at homosexuality? Incest and bestiality have the same claims as homosexuality. But we all understand why Jerad, et al., don't want to bring those upET
March 10, 2020
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Anyone who understands biology and anatomy can say that homosexuality is unnatural. That is why Jerad has issues.ET
March 10, 2020
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Truthfreedom: Exactly. Does ‘natural’ equate ‘we should not care’? Of course not! No one ever said that! I'm not even going to respond to your attempts to slide into discussions about incest and bestiality. Homosexuality between two consenting adults is just fine as far as I am concerned. AND, all I said was, can you say homosexuality is against nature, or something like that. I don't think you can. You want to start dragging all kinds of other issues into the conversation which I was not addressing.JVL
March 10, 2020
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@251 JVL
Truthfreedom: No. The point is that supposedly experts can not even agree on what the term ‘species’ is. The article you cited can not coherently explain it. They (and the Grants) do not even understand that they are contradicting Mayr (BSC). How strange.
Fine. Someone asked me to provide an example of a new species arising. I did that. The new species did not violate BSC.
The paper violates the 'science' it allegedly relies on. Would you trust a doctor that can not coherently define 'illness'? Sir, you are ill though I do not know what that means?Truthfreedom
March 10, 2020
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@JVL 251
Truthfreedom, 248: Just a little reminder. There is a certain amount of cancer in nature. It is ‘natural’. Should we stop treating cancer then?
JVL: What? As you also said, homosexuality is not cancer so your question is pretty weird. Cancer kills people, sometimes slowly and painfully. Homosexuality does not.
Exactly. Does 'natural' equate 'we should not care'? (Incest i. e. does not kill people). Bestiality does not kill people. Is it 'natural'?Truthfreedom
March 10, 2020
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Homosexuality does not.
AIDS kills.ET
March 10, 2020
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Truthfreedom, 248: Just a little reminder. There is a certain amount of cancer in nature. It is ‘natural’. Should we stop treating cancer then? What? As you also said, homosexuality is not cancer so your question is pretty weird. Cancer kills people, sometimes slowly and painfully. Homosexuality does not. No. The point is that supposedly experts can not even agree on what the term ‘species’ is. The article you cited can not coherently explain it. They (and the Grants) do not even understand that they are contradicting Mayr (BSC). How strange. Fine. Someone asked me to provide an example of a new species arising. I did that. The new species did not violate BSC. No. That this alleged (not proved) new ‘species’ does not even have a name. I have been searching and it is still Big Bird. That is not even scientific nomenclature. It reminds me of a 5-year-old playing ‘doctor’. Big Bird? Really?>/b> I don't know why there is no name. Maybe the new species designation was mistaken in which case you should be able to find a retraction.JVL
March 10, 2020
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@247 JVL
Truthfreedom: How so? 3 years have passed (article is from 2017) and NO NAME? Or am I wrong?
JVL: So they scientists didn’t go back and amend an article they didn’t write? The article clearly states that a new species arose that was reproductively isolated from its sources.
No. That this alleged (not proved) new 'species' does not even have a name. I have been searching and it is still Big Bird. That is not even scientific nomenclature. It reminds me of a 5-year-old playing 'doctor'. Big Bird? Really?Truthfreedom
March 10, 2020
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@247 JVL
Truthfreedom: Clearly, according to Mayr (BSC), there were not. Hybridisation is a patch to an ill-defined concept (‘species’).
JVL: *Okay, then a new species arose from a single one. The point was that a new species arose. The new species is reproductively isolated from its “parent” specie(s).* No. The point is that supposedly experts can not even agree on what the term 'species' is. The article you cited can not coherently explain it. They (and the Grants) do not even understand that they are contradicting Mayr (BSC). How strange.Truthfreedom
March 10, 2020
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@246 JVL
Truthfreedom: I do not know. It is you who is trying to relate an ‘undetermined quantity/ number’ to ‘naturalness’.
JVL: Okay, I’ll drop it. Makes sense. Just a little reminder. There is a certain amount of cancer in nature. It is 'natural'. Should we stop treating cancer then? (I am not saying homosexuality is cancer. Please do not go that way).Truthfreedom
March 10, 2020
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As, the Wikipedia spiral into agit prop continues. KFkairosfocus
March 10, 2020
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Truthfreedom: I do not know. It is you who is trying to relate an ‘undetermined quantity/ number’ to ‘naturalness’. Okay, I'll drop it. Clearly, according to Mayr (BSC), there were not. Hybridisation is a patch to an ill-defined concept (‘species’). Okay, then a new species arose from a single one. The point was that a new species arose. The new species is reproductively isolated from its "parent" specie(s). How so? 3 years have passed (article is from 2017) and NO NAME? Or am I wrong? So they scientists didn't go back and amend an article they didn't write? The article clearly states that a new species arose that was reproductively isolated from its sources. I clearly stated I do not agree with Rosenberg. I find naturalism repellent. (And it is illogical). I should have said: you agree with Rosenberg's interpretation of the implications of materialism.JVL
March 9, 2020
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@JVL 178
I disagree with Rosenberg.
But my question was: are you mad at Rosenberg? :)
I rather doubt he lives his life as if it has no meaning or ethics or morals.
Me too. Because naturalism is a false doctrine. It can not explain reality. But Rosenberg understands what naturalism entails: nihilism.
And just because one or more materialists express a viewpoint does not make it true or universally accepted. It would be wrong of me to look at the opinions of members of the Westboro Baptist Church and assume they are representative of all Christians.
Rosenberg is a philosopher. He is following the logic.
You agree with people like Rosenberg because . . . well, I don’t know why you agree with him. 9
I clearly stated I do not agree with Rosenberg. I find naturalism repellent. (And it is illogical).Truthfreedom
March 9, 2020
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Clearly there were two previous species. They are named.
Clearly, according to Mayr (BSC), there were not. Hybridisation is a patch to an ill-defined concept ('species').
Well, not yet! They don’t just make something up at that moment.
How so? 3 years have passed (article is from 2017) and NO NAME? Or am I wrong?Truthfreedom
March 9, 2020
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@237 JVL
No one knows the exact proportion of homosexual behaviour but we know it occurs quite often, that is not speculation. What difference does it make if you have an exact number?
I do not know. It is you who is trying to relate an 'undetermined quantity/ number' to 'naturalness'. If only 'nature' exists, EVERYTHING is 'natural'.,Truthfreedom
March 9, 2020
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Truthfreedom, 240: The problem is that according to the BSC, there were never any ‘old species’ to begin with. Bizarre. Clearly there were two previous species. They are named. The article mentions how hybrids can sometimes occur. How strange. A ‘new species’ is discovered (assumed but not proved) but it has NO NAME? Well not yet! They don't just make something up at that moment.JVL
March 9, 2020
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For the Wikipedia Lovers commenting here: https://electroverse.net/wikipedia-deletes/ Andrewasauber
March 9, 2020
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@JVL 237
But those were NOT the new species!
The problem is that according to the BSC, there were never any 'old species' to begin with. Bizarre. That is why I wrote '1st Problem Here'. Now, 2nd Problem Here
The NEW species was reproductively isolated. The NEW species was not named in the article.
- How strange. A 'new species' is discovered (assumed but not proved) but it has NO NAME? https://www.sciencealert.com/darwin-s-finches-evolve-into-new-species-in-real-time-two-generations-galapagos?ignore_ampTruthfreedom
March 9, 2020
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TF and JVL, we are not like the horse, mule or donkey which all lack understanding. We are responsibly and rationally free morally governed creatures, starting with the inescapable first duties of reason. Duties, to truth, to right reason, to prudence, to sound conscience, to fairness, to justice etc. As, even the arguments of the opposed inevitably appeal to. That means IS and OUGHT must be bridged, on pain of shattering incoherence in our life of reason. Such can only be done in the roots of reality; pointing to needing a root capable of being the source of worlds, being inherently good and utterly wise, while being necessary [causally independent] being. A familiar figure looms. KFkairosfocus
March 9, 2020
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EG, really. Kindly read. Note, I spoke to an ideology that dresses itself up in a lab coat. That ideology, Evolutionary Materialistic Scientism is the heart of Naturalism, a worldview; to the point that it is effectively almost a definition by description. These are categorically distinct from the theory or theories of evolution, though they influence such. In this latter context, so-called micro-evolution, population variation through various mechanisms, can be observed, though it poses challenges to things such as how we often define a species. Macro-evolution as it addresses body plans, is a different matter. It is an extrapolation that is too often ideologically driven, and it is not actually observed. That puts it in the class of historical or origins theories and, per Newton's Rules, requires that we have in hand observed adequate causal mechanisms that account for the like effects in our observation. That, we don't, not after 162 years of trying. The only actually observed cause of required FSCO/I (we can show that needed cell types, tissues etc likely require 10 - 100+ million new bases, so a similar number of bits), is design. Which, is being ideologically locked out. That's where BA77 and ET are quite right, we have a weak, flawed theory that has become the established orthodoxy in the teeth of lacking an adequate mechanism, a theory that dates to when the cell was seen as a simple blob of protoplasm, not understood to be the complex, deeply integrated information rich system that uses alphanumeric codes and algorithms to synthesise proteins, etc. That's a big clue: language, applied to programming, is at the heart of the cell. Language is antecedent causally to cell based life. Language, being a strong sign of intelligence, where symbol systems, communication protocols and algorithms are all characteristic of intelligence. The dominant ideology and the evidence are at odds, but entrenched ideology that has significant cultural power and enables cultural agendas favoured by dominant elites will not go down easily. Never mind, the inherent self-falsification through undermining credibility of mind and reasoning, the amorality and radical relativism that invites nihilism and ruthless factions etc. To many, those are features, not bugs. Our civilisation is in deep trouble, and the low grade civil war in its leading country is simply the most important case. The demographics point to civilisational suicide, as does the rise of decadence, perversity and cultural marxist agendas. We are dancing on a crumbling cliff's edge, heedless of warnings and signs of danger. We are already guilty of the worst holocaust in history, that of our living posterity in the womb; driven by devaluation of human life itself in our minds. Something which is directly traceable to the ideology and the presumed status of such as "fact." The predictable result is that the cliff will collapse underfoot and it is pain, grief and loss that will open our collective eyes to our folly. That is what Plato in effect testifies to about Athens, post Peloponnesian War, in The Laws, Bk X, where, The Republic's parable of the ship of state tells how the mutineer factions seized power and drove the ship to ruin. Acts 27 is a microcosm concrete event. We cannot say we have not been warned, including specifically on the folly of evolutionary materialism, the lab coat we see today only serves to confer cultural power. KF PS: Again, Plato's warning -- and note his remarks on the cynical dismissal of all religion as a cook-up:
Ath [in The Laws, Bk X 2,360 ya]. . . .[The avant garde philosophers and poets, c. 360 BC] say that fire and water, and earth and air [i.e the classical "material" elements of the cosmos], all exist by nature and chance, and none of them by art . . . [such that] all that is in the heaven, as well as animals and all plants, and all the seasons come from these elements, not by the action of mind, as they say, or of any God, or from art, but as I was saying, by nature and chance only [ --> that is, evolutionary materialism is ancient and would trace all things to blind chance and mechanical necessity] . . . . [Thus, they hold] that the principles of justice have no existence at all in nature, but that mankind are always disputing about them and altering them; and that the alterations which are made by art and by law have no basis in nature, but are of authority for the moment and at the time at which they are made.-
[ --> Relativism, too, is not new; complete with its radical amorality rooted in a worldview that has no foundational IS that can ground OUGHT, leading to an effectively arbitrary foundation only for morality, ethics and law: accident of personal preference, the ebbs and flows of power politics, accidents of history and and the shifting sands of manipulated community opinion driven by "winds and waves of doctrine and the cunning craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming . . . " cf a video on Plato's parable of the cave; from the perspective of pondering who set up the manipulative shadow-shows, why.]
These, my friends, are the sayings of wise men, poets and prose writers, which find a way into the minds of youth. They are told by them that the highest right is might,
[ --> Evolutionary materialism -- having no IS that can properly ground OUGHT -- leads to the promotion of amorality on which the only basis for "OUGHT" is seen to be might (and manipulation: might in "spin") . . . ]
and in this way the young fall into impieties, under the idea that the Gods are not such as the law bids them imagine; and hence arise factions [ --> Evolutionary materialism-motivated amorality "naturally" leads to continual contentions and power struggles influenced by that amorality at the hands of ruthless power hungry nihilistic agendas], these philosophers inviting them to lead a true life according to nature, that is,to live in real dominion over others [ --> such amoral and/or nihilistic factions, if they gain power, "naturally" tend towards ruthless abuse and arbitrariness . . . they have not learned the habits nor accepted the principles of mutual respect, justice, fairness and keeping the civil peace of justice, so they will want to deceive, manipulate and crush -- as the consistent history of radical revolutions over the past 250 years so plainly shows again and again], and not in legal subjection to them [--> nihilistic will to power not the spirit of justice and lawfulness].
kairosfocus
March 9, 2020
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Truthfreedom: So you are content with acknowledging the article is wrong, because G. conirostris and G. fortis were not reproductively isolated = they were not different species according to your BSC definition. But those were NOT the new species! The NEW species was reproductively isolated. The NEW species was not named in the article. No one knows the exact proportion of homosexual behaviour but we know it occurs quite often, that is not speculation. What difference does it make if you have an exact number?JVL
March 8, 2020
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@169 JVL Truthfreedom asked: – What ‘amount’ (of 'natural' homosexuality) would that be? JVL replied: 'I don’t know but, as homosexual behaviour is quite common in the animal kingdom then perhaps it is “natural” albeit a minority approach'. You do not know the 'number' then. 'Quite common' and 'minority' are numbers/ proportions. If you can not give exact quantities, then it is all speculation.Truthfreedom
March 8, 2020
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