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Andrew Fabich: Truth is immaterial


I don’t want to survive. I want to live! – Captain McCrea

Over the past several months, I’ve taken a new position at Truett McConnell University (TMU) as an Associate Professor of Microbiology. 1 I was attracted by what makes it different here. Virginia was a good season, but I sought to focus on closely mentoring students. TMU is unique because of its stances are uncommon in academia for the right reasons and from an Anabaptist heritage.

No more non-overlapping magisteria

During the 16th century, the state told everyone what to believe. The idea of separation of church and state is supposed to always let (y)our conscience be (y)our guide. Letting your conscience guide you began largely in the 16 th century with the Anabaptists. While Anabaptist seems obscure, some more commonly known names are Baptists, Mennonites, Brethren movement, and the Amish. 2 Anabaptists rejected state-enforced religion. While the state religion was the Holy Roman Empire, today’s state religion is secular humanism. The irony to atheists today attempting to push away religion are blind to the very religion that they’re promoting. Claiming religion doesn’t exist today is an extremely religious statement. If the state shouldn’t promote religion, then that unequivocally promotes atheism (aka non-overlapping magesteria, NOMA). NOMA has hypocritically ordained a modern priesthood of materialistic naturalists. Hello pot, this is kettle: you’re black!

Public Universities: Secular Seminaries Training a New State-Run Priesthood

University is based on unity in diversity; however, universities now reject tolerance in favor of intolerance. Academic bullying isn’t only in science, but across all disciplines. Darwin’s epistemology permeates the academy… with a twist. No one’s a Darwinist today; everyone’s a neo-Darwinist. In music: neo-romantic. In political science: neo-con or neo-liberal. Even the watered-down religion classes: neo-orthodoxy (presupposing neo-Darwinism). No one’s post-modern—we’re neo-modern.

The sport of losing with dignity

Post-modern governments replaced theism with atheism. Today, few are atheists and most are deists (god the cosmic killjoy). Since neo-Darwinism crosses every academic discipline, Anabaptists would reject state-funded atheism/deism and promote thinking for ourselves—risking degrees, jobs, and livelihood. A major change must redefine the fundamental definition of science (e.g., intelligent design) to foster intellectual curiosity and free exchange of ideas. At TMU, science operates differently from the current public/secular university/seminary.  I’m not claiming to be an Anabaptist scholar. What I know about them, though, is the point of this blog.

The Anabaptists did not call themselves by this name. It was a name originally given to deride them. They were called this because they practiced believer’s baptism instead of infant baptism. Anabaptists topple the secular ivory tower even in athletics, caring about both the process and the outcome. Darwinian athletics only care about self-advancement and winning. We primarily follow sporting rules because it’s more challenging and rewarding to win playing fair. We aren’t perfect, but we also aren’t defined by material success: there’s more to life.

Truth is immaterial and can be seen using an open mind that voluntarily follows evidence regardless.

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"Truth is immaterial and can be seen using an open mind that voluntarily follows evidence regardless."
Since atheistic materialists insist that materialism is true and yet truth is obviously immaterial, then that necessarily precludes materialism from ever being true.
"Atheists may do science, but they cannot justify what they do. When they assume the world is rational, approachable, and understandable, they plagiarize Judeo-Christian presuppositions about the nature of reality and the moral need to seek the truth. As an exercise, try generating a philosophy of science from hydrogen coming out of the big bang. It cannot be done. It’s impossible even in principle, because philosophy and science presuppose concepts that are not composed of particles and forces. They refer to ideas that must be true, universal, necessary and certain." Creation-Evolution Headlines
The fact that truth is immaterial and yet methodological naturalism is artificially imposed, by materialists, onto science prior to the pursuit of 'the truth' by science, prevents 'the truth' from ever being reached through science by atheists. Materialistic Atheists searching for 'the truth' under the confines of methodological naturalism is a bit like the old joke of the drunk looking for his car keys under a street lamp because the light is better there even though he knows that cannot possibly be where he lost his keys. That 'the truth' is not reducible to materialistic explanation is revealed by the fact that mathematics, which is considered by many to be the highest form of truth about how the universe operates, is itself not reducible to material explanation.
“I think that modern physics has definitely decided in favor of Plato. In fact the smallest units of matter are not physical objects in the ordinary sense; they are forms, ideas which can be expressed unambiguously only in mathematical language.” Werner Heisenberg “Geometry is unique and eternal, a reflection from the mind of God. That mankind shares in it is because man is an image of God.” – Johannes Kepler "Nothing in evolution can account for the soul of man. The difference between man and the other animals is unbridgeable. Mathematics is alone sufficient to prove in man the possession of a faculty unexistent in other creatures. Then you have music and the artistic faculty. No, the soul was a separate creation." Alfred Russell Wallace, New Thoughts on Evolution, 1910 An Interview with David Berlinski - Jonathan Witt Berlinski: There is no argument against religion that is not also an argument against mathematics. Mathematicians are capable of grasping a world of objects that lies beyond space and time…. Interviewer:… Come again(?) … Berlinski: No need to come again: I got to where I was going the first time. The number four, after all, did not come into existence at a particular time, and it is not going to go out of existence at another time. It is neither here nor there. Nonetheless we are in some sense able to grasp the number by a faculty of our minds. Mathematical intuition is utterly mysterious. So for that matter is the fact that mathematical objects such as a Lie Group or a differentiable manifold have the power to interact with elementary particles or accelerating forces. But these are precisely the claims that theologians have always made as well – that human beings are capable by an exercise of their devotional abilities to come to some understanding of the deity; and the deity, although beyond space and time, is capable of interacting with material objects. http://tofspot.blogspot.com/2013/10/found-upon-web-and-reprinted-here.html
Both Einstein and Wigner are on record as to regarding it as an epistemological miracle that we can comprehend the world through mathematics:
How can it be that mathematics, being after all a product of human thought which is independent of experience, is so admirably appropriate to the objects of reality? Is human reason, then, without experience, merely by taking thought, able to fathom the properties of real things? — Albert Einstein "You find it strange that I consider the comprehensibility of the world (to the extent that we are authorized to speak of such a comprehensibility) as a miracle or as an eternal mystery. Well, a priori, one should expect a chaotic world, which cannot be grasped by the mind in any way .. the kind of order created by Newton's theory of gravitation, for example, is wholly different. Even if a man proposes the axioms of the theory, the success of such a project presupposes a high degree of ordering of the objective world, and this could not be expected a priori. That is the 'miracle' which is constantly reinforced as our knowledge expands." Albert Einstein - Letters to Solovine - New York, Philosophical Library, 1987 The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences - Eugene Wigner - 1960 Excerpt: ,,certainly it is hard to believe that our reasoning power was brought, by Darwin's process of natural selection, to the perfection which it seems to possess.,,, It is difficult to avoid the impression that a miracle confronts us here, quite comparable in its striking nature to the miracle that the human mind can string a thousand arguments together without getting itself into contradictions, or to the two miracles of the existence of laws of nature and of the human mind's capacity to divine them.,,, The miracle of the appropriateness of the language of mathematics for the formulation of the laws of physics is a wonderful gift which we neither understand nor deserve. We should be grateful for it and hope that it will remain valid in future research and that it will extend, for better or for worse, to our pleasure, even though perhaps also to our bafflement, to wide branches of learning. http://www.dartmouth.edu/~matc/MathDrama/reading/Wigner.html
And although mathematics is certainly very friendly to Theistic concerns,,,
“Mathematics is the language with which God has written the universe.” Galileo Galilei Mathematics: The Beautiful Language of the Universe - 23 Dec , 2015 Excerpt: mathematics is more than just a set of vague equations and complex rules that you are required to memorize. Mathematics is the language of the universe, and in learning this language, you are opening yourself up the core mechanisms by which the cosmos operates. http://www.universetoday.com/120681/mathematics-the-beautiful-language-of-the-universe/# Describing Nature With Math By Peter Tyson - Nov. 2011 Excerpt: Mathematics underlies virtually all of our technology today. James Maxwell's four equations summarizing electromagnetism led directly to radio and all other forms of telecommunication. E = mc2 led directly to nuclear power and nuclear weapons. The equations of quantum mechanics made possible everything from transistors and semiconductors to electron microscopy and magnetic resonance imaging. Indeed, many of the technologies you and I enjoy every day simply would not work without mathematics. When you do a Google search, you're relying on 19th-century algebra, on which the search engine's algorithms are based. When you watch a movie, you may well be seeing mountains and other natural features that, while appearing as real as rock, arise entirely from mathematical models. When you play your iPod, you're hearing a mathematical recreation of music that is stored digitally; your cell phone does the same in real time. "When you listen to a mobile phone, you're not actually hearing the voice of the person speaking," Devlin told me. "You're hearing a mathematical recreation of that voice. That voice is reduced to mathematics." http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/physics/describing-nature-math.html
And although mathematics is certainly very friendly to the Theistic concerns of Christians, and very antagonistic to the materialistic concerns of atheists, many mathematicians falsely believe that the ultimate truth will, some day, be reached solely by mathematical reasoning. That mathematics, in and of itself, cannot ever reach the ultimate truth is revealed by the fact that mathematics itself is found to be 'incomplete'.
Mathematicians Bridge Finite-Infinite Divide - May 24, 2016 A surprising new proof is helping to connect the mathematics of infinity to the physical world. Excerpt: Hilbert tasked mathematicians with proving that set theory and all of infinitistic mathematics is finitistically reducible, and therefore trustworthy. “We must know; we will know!” he said in a 1930 address in Königsberg — words later etched on his tomb. However, the Austrian-American mathematician Kurt Gödel showed in 1931 that, in fact, we won’t. In a shocking result, Gödel proved that no system of logical axioms (or starting assumptions) can ever prove its own consistency; to prove that a system of logic is consistent, you always need another axiom outside of the system. This means there is no ultimate set of axioms — no theory of everything — in mathematics. When looking for a set of axioms that yield all true mathematical statements and never contradict themselves, you always need another axiom. Gödel’s theorem meant that Hilbert’s program was doomed: The axioms of finitistic mathematics cannot even prove their own consistency, let alone the consistency of set theory and the mathematics of the infinite. https://www.quantamagazine.org/20160524-mathematicians-bridge-finite-infinite-divide/ "Either mathematics is too big for the human mind, or the human mind is more than a machine." - Kurt Gödel As quoted in Topoi : The Categorial Analysis of Logic (1979) by Robert Goldblatt, p. 13
Even Hawking himself, in his quest to find the mathematical 'theory of everything', admitted as much about the 'incompleteness' of mathematics:
Kurt Gödel (ref. on cite), halted the achievement of a unifying all-encompassing theory of everything in his theorem that: “Anything you can draw a circle around cannot explain itself without referring to something outside the circle—something you have to assume but cannot prove”. Thus, based on the position that an equation cannot prove itself, the constructs are based on assumptions some of which will be unprovable." Cf., Stephen Hawking & Leonard Miodinow, The Grand Design (2010) @ 15-6
Since mathematics is now shown to be incomplete, might I be so bold as to suggest instead of looking for mathematics, all by itself, to lead us to 'the truth' that we instead look beyond mathematics for exactly what it is that “breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe.”?
BRUCE GORDON: Hawking’s irrational arguments – October 2010 Excerpt: ,,,The physical universe is causally incomplete and therefore neither self-originating nor self-sustaining. The world of space, time, matter and energy is dependent on a reality that transcends space, time, matter and energy. This transcendent reality cannot merely be a Platonic realm of mathematical descriptions, for such things are causally inert abstract entities that do not affect the material world,,, Rather, the transcendent reality on which our universe depends must be something that can exhibit agency – a mind that can choose among the infinite variety of mathematical descriptions and bring into existence a reality that corresponds to a consistent subset of them. This is what “breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe.” Anything else invokes random miracles as an explanatory principle and spells the end of scientific rationality.,,, http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/oct/1/hawking-irrational-arguments/
And when one rightly allows God to “breathe fire into the equations" then an empirically backed reconciliation between quantum mechanics and general relativity, i.e. the quote unquote 'theory of everything', is reached by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from death:
Resurrection of Jesus Christ as the Theory of Everything - Centrality Concerns https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8uHST2uFPQY John 18:37-38 ,,,Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice. “What is truth?” Pilate asked. With this he went out again to the Jews and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him.
August 14, 2016
07:14 AM
Just a note re infant baptism: Many Christian traditions practise it on the theory that the parents pledge to raise the child as a Christian. There was a controversy in Toronto, Canada, in 1975, in which an Anglican (Episcopal) priest refused to baptise a child because her mother was an agnostic who claimed that she only wanted the child baptized to prevent her from going to hell - and that she did not otherwise intend to go to church or try to be a good Christian. Unusually for the Anglican church, the bishop of the day backed his priest, pointing out that baptism is not ecclesiastical fire insurance and is irrelevant to the risk of going to hell. It is granted to Christian parents in good faith, but that was not the case here.News
August 14, 2016
04:58 AM

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