Intelligent Design

Why is Seeing the Glaringly Obvious So Hard?

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Yesterday I had an exchange with Seversky that illustrates something I have observed countless times over the years.  Materialists have a blind spot regarding how their own arguments undermine, well, their own arguments.  Here is the exchange:

Johnnyb wrote:

The reason for this is the precise theorem that Hoffman states – in evolutionary competition, fitness beats truth.

To which Sev responded:

Unless fitness is truth in which case there is no competition. How does Hoffman – or Plantinga – distinguish between “fitness” and “truth”? Are they comparing like with like?

I wrote:

But Sev, you know for a certain fact that according to your own premises fitness and truth are not the same.  For 99% of human existence, 99% of humans have believed in a God or gods.  Your premises compel you to say that evolutionary forces caused that state of affairs (for the simple reason that, under your premises, there are no other alternatives).  You also say that a belief in a God or gods is a false belief.  Therefore, simple logic applied to your own factual premises demands the conclusion that evolutionary forces selected for a false belief.

Sev:

I agree that evolution can select for false beliefs, religion being a possible example, but not that it mostly or always does. Human beings survive better in groups than on their own. Religious belief, even if false, can help to bind such groups together more tightly and make them more resilient in face of challenges. At that level, it is advantageous in terms of survival. On the other hand, believing that tigers are big, cuddly pets who just want to play is probably not going to be so advantageous and, over time, those holding such beliefs are less likely to survive and pass on that belief.

Barry


“I agree that evolution can select for false beliefs . . .” Then you have given away the store.  If evolution can select for false beliefs, who is to say when it has selected for a false belief as opposed to a true one.  You advance a candidate for what you believe to be a true belief (human beings survive better in groups).  Yet, you admit that evolution may have caused you to believe that even though it is false.

It never ceases to astound me that seemingly intelligent people (and I count Sev among such), can’t seem to grasp the glaringly obvious end of the logic.  If our beliefs are the product of blind material forces, we can NEVER know whether we believe them because they are actually true or because those blind material forces caused us to believe them even though they are false.

100 Replies to “Why is Seeing the Glaringly Obvious So Hard?

  1. 1
    asauber says:

    Seversky’s position renders true or false meaningless. But like every good materialist, he holds his own position to be true. And the decades go by…

    Andrew

  2. 2
    DerekDiMarco says:

    The Devil must be deceiving them!

    The alternative is that one is wrong, but so wholly committed to the idea that they can’t even entertain that it could be wrong.

    But nah, it’s probably the Devil.

  3. 3
    asauber says:

    …and the trolls come out.

    Andrew

  4. 4
    hazel says:

    My experience is that any attept to respond to Barry will be met with dismissal: “hand waving” and “special pleading”, so this “troll” won’t bother.

  5. 5
    john_a_designer says:

    Barry: “It never ceases to astound me that seemingly intelligent people (and I count Sev among such)…”

    Is Sev really intelligent? Of course he thinks he is but is it really intelligent to believe in irrational nonsense? All I can infer from his presence at UD is that he is biased and self-centered. Remember, he has proudly admitted many time here that he is a moral subjectivist. By definition for a moral subjectivist morality starts with himself which means he can never be in error because he is free to move the goal posts whenever he wishes. Personally I see no reason trust such people, but I digress. My only point is that by definition a moral subjectivist is self-centered (not just about morality but also epistemology) which means he believes what he believes because that is what he believes. That’s incorrigibility. How can you reason with someone who is completely incorrigible?

  6. 6
    ET says:

    hazel:

    My experience is that any attept to respond to Barry will be met with dismissal: “hand waving” and “special pleading”,

    Given what you have posted, Barry isn’t wrong.

  7. 7
    es58 says:

    Hazel@4 as kf has pointed out so often in his notes to onlookers a discussion on line is rarely to convince the other person but for the sake of the other readers so unless you feel there’s no one at all who would benefit from your response, including yourself, please proceed.

  8. 8
    hazel says:

    This is true, Es58. However the vast majority of the people who do respond to me here are merely dismissive and don’t actually engage my points, so it’s hard for me to want to take the time.

    It is actually Barry’s dismissal on the hammer, nail thread that I am referring to, so if you’d like to read my points over there and respond, I’d be glad to try and carry on.

  9. 9
    Barry Arrington says:

    Hazel

    the vast majority of the people who do respond to me here are merely dismissive and don’t actually engage my points

    If you had actually raised a point, I probably would have engaged with it. Instead, your argument amounted to “evolution causes everything except when it does not, in which case some mysterious and unnamed material force causes it.” You were asked several times to provide evidence for your asserted mysterious and unnamed material force. You ignored those requests for obvious reasons.

  10. 10
    hazel says:

    Barry, you’re hopeless. Your statement following “your argument amounted to” is just a distorted, inaccurate description of what I said. I can’t discuss things with people who can’t do better than that.

  11. 11
    bornagain77 says:

    I find Barry’s response to be directly on point. Contrary to Hazel’s belief that she ‘raised a point’, the true state of the situation is exactly as Barry stated, , “your argument amounted to “evolution causes everything except when it does not, in which case some mysterious and unnamed material force causes it.” You were asked several times to provide evidence for your asserted mysterious and unnamed material force. You ignored those requests for obvious reasons.”

    Hazel suggested that people read the exchange. I also suggest people read the exchange: Particularly where I addressed her main claim, i.e. ““evolution selected for broad cognitive skills, including language, not for particular beliefs”, in detail,

    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/johnnyb-nail-head/#comment-687970

    Please note her supposedly substantive response to my rebuttal of her claim:

    ” I am not a “Darwinist” and I’m not talking about how such things as language evolved. But I accept the conclusion that there has been a progression of creatures over the last some hundreds of thousands of years that slowly acquired what we now consider fully human capabilities.”
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/johnnyb-nail-head/#comment-687981

    And there you have it folks, question begging to the max and yet she apparently thinks she is the one who ‘raised a point’. As Eugene noted about these types of arguments from atheists, Pathetic!

  12. 12
    rhampton7 says:

    “ I accept the conclusion that there has been a progression of creatures over the last some hundreds of thousands of years that slowly acquired what we now consider fully human capabilities.”

    I don’t see how this conflicts with Intelligent Design or Evolutionary theory, but it does with some Biblical interpretations like YEC.

  13. 13
    aarceng says:

    In principal a belief, however arrived at, can be tested against reality and either confirmed or falsified.

  14. 14
    bornagain77 says:

    As to:

    Hazel: “evolution selected for broad cognitive skills, including language, not for particular beliefs”,,,
    “I accept the conclusion that there has been a progression of creatures over the last some hundreds of thousands of years that slowly acquired what we now consider fully human capabilities.”

    She accepts ‘evolution selected for broad cognitive skills, including language,’ on what evidential basis? It is a blatantly Darwinian claim, (though she claimed to not be a Darwinist). A evidence free claim that is begging the question for crying out loud. She has less than zero evidence for her claim and/or acceptance of her belief that “there has been a progression of creatures over the last some hundreds of thousands of years that slowly acquired what we now consider fully human capabilities.”

    Leading evolutionary researchers, Marc Hauser, Charles Yang, Robert Berwick, Ian Tattersall, Michael J. Ryan, Jeffrey Watumull, Noam Chomsky and Richard C. Lewontin, honestly confessed that they have “essentially no explanation of how and why our linguistic computations and representations evolved.,,,”

    Leading Evolutionary Scientists Admit We Have No Evolutionary Explanation of Human Language – December 19, 2014
    Excerpt: Understanding the evolution of language requires evidence regarding origins and processes that led to change. In the last 40 years, there has been an explosion of research on this problem as well as a sense that considerable progress has been made. We argue instead that the richness of ideas is accompanied by a poverty of evidence, with essentially no explanation of how and why our linguistic computations and representations evolved.,,,
    (Marc Hauser, Charles Yang, Robert Berwick, Ian Tattersall, Michael J. Ryan, Jeffrey Watumull, Noam Chomsky and Richard C. Lewontin, “The mystery of language evolution,” Frontiers in Psychology, Vol 5:401 (May 7, 2014).)
    Casey Luskin added: “It’s difficult to imagine much stronger words from a more prestigious collection of experts.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....92141.html

    Noam Chomsky, Institute Professor and Professor of Linguistics (Emeritus) at MIT elaborates further and states that, “There is little evidence of anything like human language, or symbolic behavior altogether, before the emergence of modern humans.,,,”

    The Galilean Challenge – Noam Chomsky – April 2017
    Excerpt: The capacity for language is species specific, something shared by humans and unique to them. It is the most striking feature of this curious organism, and a foundation for its remarkable achievement,,,
    There has been considerable progress in understanding the nature of the internal language, but its free creative use remains a mystery. This should come as no surprise. In a recent review of far simpler cases of voluntary action, neuroscientists Emilio Bizzi and Robert Ajemian remark, in the case of something so simple as raising one’s arm, that
    “the detail of this complicated process, which critically involves coordinate and variable transformations from spatial movement goals to muscle activations, needs to be elaborated further. Phrased more fancifully, we have some idea as to the intricate design of the puppet and the puppet strings, but we lack insight into the mind of the puppeteer.”8
    The normal creative use of language is an even more dramatic example.,,,
    One fact appears to be well established. The faculty of language is a true species property, invariant among human groups, and unique to humans in its essential properties. It follows that there has been little or no evolution of the faculty since human groups separated from one another,,,
    There is little evidence of anything like human language, or symbolic behavior altogether, before the emergence of modern humans.,,,
    Our intricate knowledge of what even the simplest words mean is acquired virtually without experience. At peak periods of language acquisition, children acquire about a word an hour, often on one presentation.26 The rich meaning of even the most elementary words must be substantially innate.
    The evolutionary origin of such concepts is a complete mystery.,,,
    — Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor and Professor of Linguistics (Emeritus) at MIT.
    http://inference-review.com/ar.....-challenge

    And as Dr. Ian Tattersall, paleoanthropologist and emeritus curator of the American Museum of Natural History stated, “there is certainly no evidence to support the notion that we gradually became who we inherently are over an extended period, in either the physical or the intellectual sense.”

    “A number of hominid crania are known from sites in eastern and southern Africa in the 400- to 200-thousand-year range, but none of them looks like a close antecedent of the anatomically distinctive Homo sapiens…Even allowing for the poor record we have of our close extinct kin, Homo sapiens appears as distinctive and unprecedented…there is certainly no evidence to support the notion that we gradually became who we inherently are over an extended period, in either the physical or the intellectual sense.”
    Dr. Ian Tattersall: – paleoanthropologist – emeritus curator of the American Museum of Natural History – (Masters of the Planet, 2012)

    Her ‘acceptance’ has no foundational basis in evidence and/or reality and therefore ‘begs the question’ as to her false claim to Barry that she had raised a substantive point that should have been addressed.. Bottom line, Barry is right on point in his criticism, “your argument amounted to “evolution causes everything except when it does not, in which case some mysterious and unnamed material force causes it.”

    Further notes:

    The Siege of Paris – Robert Berwick & Noam Chomsky – March 2019
    Excerpt: Linguists told themselves many stories about the evolution of language, and so did evolutionary biologists; but stories, as Richard Lewontin rightly notes, are not hypotheses, a term that should be “reserved for assertions that can be tested.”4
    The human language faculty is a species-specific property, with no known group differences and little variation. There are no significant analogues or homologues to the human language faculty in other species.5,,,
    How far back does language go? There is no evidence of significant symbolic activity before the appearance of anatomically modern humans 200 thousand years ago (kya).22,,,
    There is no evidence that great apes, however sophisticated, have any of the crucial distinguishing features of language and ample evidence that they do not.48 Claims made in favor of their semantic powers, we might observe, are wrong. Recent research reveals that the semantic properties of even the simplest words are radically different from anything in animal symbolic systems.49,,,
    Why only us?,,, We were not, of course, the first to ask them. We echo in modern terms the Cartesian philosophers Antoine Arnauld and Claude Lancelot, seventeenth-century authors of the Port-Royal Grammar, for whom language with its infinite combinatorial capacity wrought from a finite inventory of sounds was uniquely human and the very foundation of thought. It is subtle enough to express all that we can conceive, down to the innermost and “diverse movements of our souls.”
    https://inference-review.com/article/the-siege-of-paris
    Robert Berwick is a Professor in the Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems at MIT.
    Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor and Professor of Linguistics (Emeritus) at MIT.

    Kept in Mind – Juan Uriagereka – March 2019
    Review of: Language in Our Brain: The Origins of a Uniquely Human Capacity
    by Angela Friederici
    Excerpt: Which part of our brain carries information forward in time? No one knows. For that matter, no one knows what a symbol is, or where symbolic interactions take place. The formal structures of linguistics and neurophysiology are disjoint, a point emphasized by Poeppel and David Embick in a widely cited study.2,,,
    No one has distinguished one thought from another by dissecting brains. Neuroimaging tells us only when some areas of the brain light up selectively. Brain wave frequencies may suggest that different kinds of thinking are occurring, but a suggestion is not an inference—even if there is a connection between certain areas of the brain and seeing, hearing, or processing words. Connections of this sort are not nothing, of course, but neither are they very much.,,,
    Some considerable distance remains between the observation that the brain is doing something and the claim that it is manipulating various linguistic representations. Friederici notes the lapse. “How information content is encoded and decoded,” she remarks, “in the sending and receiving brain areas is still an open issue—not only with respect to language, but also with respect to the neurophysiology of information processing in general.”5,,,
    Cognitive scientists cannot say how the mass or energy of the brain is related to the information it carries. Everyone expects that more activity in a given area means more information processing. No one has a clue whether it is more information or more articulated information, or more interconnected information, or whether, for that matter, the increased neuro-connectivity signifies something else entirely.,,,
    ,,, present-day observational technology does not seem capable of teasing apart these different components of syntax at work,,,,
    https://inference-review.com/article/kept-in-mind
    Juan Uriagereka is a linguist at the University of Maryland.

    Verse:

    Genesis 2:19
    And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

    and:

    “The point emerges that if we examine the fossil record in detail, whether at the level of orders or of species, we find’ over and over again’ not gradual evolution, but the sudden explosion of one group at the expense of another.”
    Paleontologist, Derek V. Ager (Department of Geology & Oceanography, University College, Swansea, UK)

    “It is a feature of the known fossil record that most taxa appear abruptly. They are not, as a rule, led up to by a sequence of almost imperceptibly changing forerunners such as Darwin believed should be usual in evolution…This phenomenon becomes more universal and more intense as the hierarchy of categories is ascended. Gaps among known species are sporadic and often small. Gaps among known orders, classes and phyla are systematic and almost always large.”
    G.G.Simpson – one of the most influential American Paleontologist of the 20th century

    “Given the fact of evolution, one would expect the fossils to document a gradual steady change from ancestral forms to the descendants. But this is not what the paleontologist finds. Instead, he or she finds gaps in just about every phyletic series.” –
    Ernst Mayr – Professor Emeritus, Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University

    “What is missing are the many intermediate forms hypothesized by Darwin, and the continual divergence of major lineages into the morphospace between distinct adaptive types.”
    Robert L Carroll (born 1938) – vertebrate paleontologist who specialises in Paleozoic and Mesozoic amphibians

    “In virtually all cases a new taxon appears for the first time in the fossil record with most definitive features already present, and practically no known stem-group forms.”
    Fossils and Evolution, TS Kemp – Curator of Zoological Collections, Oxford University, Oxford Uni Press, p246, 1999

    Bechly: In the Fossil Record, “Abrupt Appearances Are the Rule” – February 20, 2018,
    Excerpt: , you might think that the Cambrian explosion some 530 million years is a singularity, a freak of nature: the sudden appearance of phyla, major categories of life,,,, Yet Dr. Bechly points out that the problem posed by the Cambrian event is not singular but in fact has been repeated numerous times in the long history of life — sudden explosions, abrupt appearances, followed by diversification. Each should multiply the distress of Darwin’s defenders, if they are honest with themselves about it.
    In a chapter co-authored with philosopher of science Stephen Meyer in the recent book Theistic Evolution: A Scientific, Philosophical, and Theological Critique (pg. 340-352), Bechly details 19 such “explosions.” As he observes, in the fossil record, “Abrupt appearances are the rule.” Each such event poses the same challenge to Darwinian thinking that the Cambrian explosion does.
    https://evolutionnews.org/2018/02/bechly-in-the-fossil-record-abrupt-appearances-are-the-rule/

  15. 15
    Seversky says:

    Once again, in case anyone missed my previous statements, by the correspondence theory, truth resides in the degree to which a claim about some aspect of objective reality is observed to correspond to what it describes. If I say that a ripe tomato is red, that claim is true to the extent that we see that ripe tomatoes are red.

    Fitness, in terms of evolutionary biology, broadly refers to an organism’s ability to survive and reproduce in a particular environment. It can be the result of many different properties of the organism and how they interact with its immediate environment. Any property which improves the fitness of an organism compared with its competitors will tend, over time, to facilitate the proliferation of that organism. In other words, it will survive and flourish.

    An organism which is able to acquire data about its environment and has the capacity to use that data create a mental model of that environment which allows it to avoid dangers has a considerable advantage over less well-favored creatures. If that organism notices that others of its kind are killed and eaten by large cats with stripey coats and forms the view that they are to avoided at all costs if one prefers not to be eaten, that is a claim about the natural world. If it is true then the organism holding that view will have a better chance of surviving that one that thinks those cats are cuddly, playful pets. The same would be true for an organism which notices that eating certain berries make others sick or even kills them. In other words holding true beliefs can have considerable survival value. It shouldn’t be necessary to have to labor this point.

    The fact that there are some beliefs which are not true according to observation but which can nonetheless enhance fitness does not invalidate the above in any way. We have agreed that religions generally have a survival or fitness value in terms of how they can strengthen the bonds which tie a society together. The problem for believers is that most if not all faiths have that effect to some degree. This suggests that the specific doctrines espoused by the different faiths are irrelevant to fitness. In other words, it doesn’t matter what you believe as long as you all have the same belief.

    Granted the above exception, it remains true that having true beliefs tends to confer a fitness advantage. Observing that people get sick and even die after drinking water from a particular pump and forming the claim that the water from that pump is contaminated in some way can, if true, prevent people dying. Discovering that epileptic seizures are associated with abnormal electrical activity in a certain part of the brain rather than being a consequence of demonic possession can lead to a better understanding of the affliction and more effective treatments.

    Does this mean that our beliefs are 100% reliable? No, of course not. Our intelligence has a limited capacity. The data we acquire through our senses about the outside world is far from complete. Does this mean that the opposite holds true, that our beliefs are therefore totally unreliable or complete delusions? Again, no. This is not a black-and-white situation. There are beliefs in which we have a high degree of confidence, even approaching certainty. There are beliefs in which we are fairly confident but leave some room for doubt and there are those which we regard as speculative at best. It’s better to think of it as a spectrum of confidence ranging from absolute, unquestioning certainty to complete skepticism or disbelief. The confidence we have in our various beliefs lies somewhere between the two extremes. One way we can discriminate between competing beliefs is, if they make testable claims, to test them. Claims about what ought to be can’t be tested so they are not capable of being either true or false.

  16. 16
    bornagain77 says:

    Sev, no matter how much you try to twist and spin, your evolutionary ‘just-so story’, as usual, conflicts with the findings.

    The Evolutionary Argument Against Reality – April 2016
    The cognitive scientist Donald Hoffman uses evolutionary game theory to show that our perceptions of an independent reality must be illusions.
    Excerpt: “The classic argument is that those of our ancestors who saw more accurately had a competitive advantage over those who saw less accurately and thus were more likely to pass on their genes that coded for those more accurate perceptions, so after thousands of generations we can be quite confident that we’re the offspring of those who saw accurately, and so we see accurately. That sounds very plausible. But I think it is utterly false. It misunderstands the fundamental fact about evolution, which is that it’s about fitness functions — mathematical functions that describe how well a given strategy achieves the goals of survival and reproduction. The mathematical physicist Chetan Prakash proved a theorem that I devised that says: According to evolution by natural selection, an organism that sees reality as it is will never be more fit than an organism of equal complexity that sees none of reality but is just tuned to fitness. Never.”
    https://www.quantamagazine.org/20160421-the-evolutionary-argument-against-reality/

    The Case Against Reality – May 13, 2016
    Excerpt: Hoffman seems to come to a conclusion similar to the one Alvin Plantinga argues in ch. 10 of Where the Conflict Really Lies: we should not expect — in the absence of further argument — that creatures formed by a naturalistic evolutionary process would have veridical perceptions.,,,
    First, even if Hoffman’s argument were restricted to visual perception, and not to our cognitive faculties more generally (e.g., memory, introspection, a priori rational insight, testimonial belief, inferential reasoning, etc.), the conclusion that our visual perceptions would be wholly unreliable given natural selection would be sufficient for Plantinga’s conclusion of self-defeat. After all, reliance upon the veridicality of our visual perceptions was and always will be crucial for any scientific argument for the truth of evolution. So if these perceptions cannot be trusted, we have little reason to think evolutionary theory is true.
    Second, it’s not clear that Hoffman’s application of evolutionary game theory is only specially applicable to visual perception, rather than being relevant for our cognitive faculties generally. If “we find that veridical perceptions can be driven to extinction by non-veridical strategies that are tuned to utility rather than objective reality” (2010, p. 504, my emphasis), then why wouldn’t veridical cognitive faculties (more generally) be driven to extinction by non-veridical strategies that are tuned to utility rather than objective reality? After all, evolutionary theory purports to be the true account of the formation of all of our cognitive faculties, not just our faculty of visual perception. If evolutionary game theory proves that “true perception generally goes extinct” when “animals that perceive the truth compete with others that sacrifice truth for speed and energy-efficiency” (2008), why wouldn’t there be a similar sacrifice with respect to other cognitive faculties? In fact, Hoffman regards the following theorem as now proven: “According to evolution by natural selection, an organism that sees reality as it is will never be more fit than an organism of equal complexity that sees none of reality but is just tuned to fitness” (Atlantic interview). But then wouldn’t it also be the case that an organism that cognizes reality as it is will never be more fit than an organism of equal complexity that cognizes none of reality but is just tuned to fitness? On the evolutionary story, every cognitive faculty we have was produced by a process that was tuned to fitness (rather than tuned to some other value, such as truth).
    http://www.gregwelty.com/2016/.....t-reality/

    And again, given that ‘truth’ itself is immaterial in its basic essence, these findings against the reductive materialistic framework of Darwinian evolution, by both Hoffman and Plantinga, really should not be all that surprising.

    Thus again, given that mind, logic, math, and even truth itself, are immaterial in their basic essence, then it should not be all that surprising for us to learn that Darwinian materialism, (via extensive analysis of population genetics), cannot possibly produce true beliefs and perceptions about the world,
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/johnnyb-nail-head/#comment-687929

  17. 17
    tjguy says:

    Speaking of selection….

    Over at crev.info, Coppedge has an interesting series about natural selection showing that even some evolutionists are realizing that it can in now way whatsoever account for what we see. Steve Talbott is writing a book entitled “Evolution as it was meant to be”. Ch. 19 is entitled “Let’s not begin with natural selection” and he skillfully takes down the concept of natural selection showing it to be mostly wrong. The great thing here is that this is written by an evolutionist and not an IDer or a creationist. But he seems to have been listening to some of our critiques of natural selection and it’s inability to explain what we see in nature. Here is just one quote from the article:

    “It would be truer to say that the famously simple and compelling logic of natural selection, misconceived as the “foundation” of a powerful theory, has been a primary source of hokum in evolutionary thinking. It is a kind of blank template upon which overly credulous biologists and lay people can project their faith. As for the “genuine force” Gould refers to — a supposed causal power over and above those we find actually at play in biological activity — it is a magical invention borne of the refusal to recognize agency in the only place where we ever observe it, which is in the lives of organisms.”

    https://crev.info/2019/11/natural-selection-is-vacuous-ii/

  18. 18
    john_a_designer says:

    Barry vs. Hazel @ 9 & 10:

    Hazel: the vast majority of the people who do respond to me here are merely dismissive and don’t actually engage my points

    Barry: If you had actually raised a point, I probably would have engaged with it. Instead, your argument amounted to “evolution causes everything except when it does not, in which case some mysterious and unnamed material force causes it.” You were asked several times to provide evidence for your asserted mysterious and unnamed material force. You ignored those requests for obvious reasons. have my own personal standard when it comes to interacting with our regular interlocutors.

    Hazel: Barry, you’re hopeless. Your statement following “your argument amounted to” is just a distorted, inaccurate description of what I said. I can’t discuss things with people who can’t do better than that.

    I have my own personal standard when it comes to interacting with our regular interlocutors. I usually only engage under two conditions:

    First, our interlocutor must be willing to ask and answer honest questions.

    Second, they need make a logically valid argument, which can be stated using succinct fact based premises. Being argumentative is not the same as making a valid argument. Neither is pretension and posturing, obstruction or obfuscation. Reasonable people know how to make reasonable arguments.

    Here is an honest question:

    Are personal beliefs and opinions sufficient to establish any kind of (capital T) Truth?

    Apparently Hazel believes so. In other words, her “argument” is:

    I believe that proposition X is true.

    Therefore, X is true.

    Why? Because that’s what Hazel believes so that settles it.

  19. 19
    ET says:

    Tjguy, from The Origin of Theoretical Population Genetics (University of Chicago Press, 1971), reissued in 2001 by William Provine:

    Natural selection does not act on anything, nor does it select (for or against), force, maximize, create, modify, shape, operate, drive, favor, maintain, push, or adjust. Natural selection does nothing….Having natural selection select is nifty because it excuses the necessity of talking about the actual causation of natural selection. Such talk was excusable for Charles Darwin, but inexcusable for evolutionists now. Creationists have discovered our empty “natural selection” language, and the “actions” of natural selection make huge, vulnerable targets. (pp. 199-200)

    Thanks for the honesty Will. Natural selection is incapable of producing biological complexity.

  20. 20
    hazel says:

    My position is that there is no capital T truth, JAD.

  21. 21
    ET says:

    Except you cannot possibly know that, hazel. So your position isn’t based on anything beyond your personal bias.

  22. 22
    BPS from AZ says:

    “[Some physicist see these new developments] as compelling evidence for intrinsically observer-dependent theories such as Quantum Bayesianism.”
    —————————————————————–
    And from Wikipedia: …some philosophers of science have deemed QBism a form of anti-realism. The originators of the interpretation disagree with this characterization, proposing instead that the theory more properly aligns with a kind of realism they call “participatory realism”, wherein reality consists of more than can be captured by any putative third-person account of it.
    —————————————————————–
    Somewhere out there, the ghost of Alfred North Whitehead nods and softly chuckles.

  23. 23
    bornagain77 says:

    “My position is that there is no capital T truth,”

    save of course for her capital T truth that there is no capital T truth, 🙂

  24. 24
    hazel says:

    Cute, ba, but, no, I don’t think my belief that there is no truth with a capital T is a truth with a capital T. That should be obvious.
    UD Editors: So, Hazel, you are admitting that your statement that there is no truth with a capital T may, for all you know, be wrong and that, for all you know, there may well be truth with a capital T. Good for you. That’s progress.

  25. 25
    hazel says:

    Stay out of my comments, Barry! And yes, I’ve never denied that there might be truth with a capital T.
    UD Editors. UD reserves the right to add comments to any comment. Those who disagree with this policy are free not to post comments on our site.

  26. 26
    AaronS1978 says:

    Never thought I’d see someone say “stay out of my comments” That kind of wigged me out, Not trying to make anyone mad when it comes this but I agree with Hazel when it comes to posting inside of someone’s comments

    I know I’m nothing special I’m just voicing my opinion

  27. 27
    hazel says:

    Might doesn’t make right, Barry: kf has had a great deal to say about this! 🙂

  28. 28
    Ed George says:

    Aaron1978

    Not trying to make anyone mad when it comes this but I agree with Hazel when it comes to posting inside of someone’s comments

    I have to agree, unless Barry is going to grant that power to everyone. Which, obviously, would be crazy.

    I have more of an issue when KF deletes what a commenter says and includes something like [Snipped for vulgarity]. I would rather that he removed the entire comment than remove part of it.

  29. 29
    john_a_designer says:

    Here is an argument that is not rooted in just subjective belief or opinion.

    Let’s begin with a proposition that appears to be self-evidently true from both the theist and non-theist perspective:

    If the universe is all that exists there is no ultimate purpose and meaning to human existence.

    However, while that premise is self-evidently true it doesn’t logically follow that the universe is all that exists.

    But just for the heck of it, let’s try it out anyway by plugging it into a simple argument.

    Premise #1: If the universe is all that exists there is no ultimate purpose and meaning to human existence.

    Premise #2: The universe is all that exists.

    Conclusion: There is no ultimate purpose and meaning to human existence.

    The argument of course fails because we have no way to prove premise #2 is true and if premise #2 is not true, the conclusion does not follow.

    Nevertheless, there are at least a couple of implications that we can derive from this so-called argument.

    First, even though there is no way to prove that Premise #2, “The universe is all that exists,” is true, it’s still possibly true, the same way that the claim that “pink unicorns exist” could be true, though it’s not self-evidently true. So those who claim that it is true have the burden of proof to prove it’s true. In other words, it cannot be claimed as some kind of “default position.”

    Second, if there is no way to prove Premise #2 then the materialist has no solid basis for knowledge or any claim of truth. The materialist is left with only his opinions and beliefs. This leaves him with an untenable and self-refuting truth claim that must be accepted by faith. That, however, undermines the whole atheistic-materialist project which claims to be based on reason, facts and logic.

    Furthermore, it doesn’t explain why humans appear to be hardwired to seek higher purpose and meaning that goes beyond the immediate survival needs of an accidentally evolved species of hunter-gatherer apes. Why, for example, did the Egyptians build the pyramids? In other words, there is no explanation (other than empty hand waving) for why this should be true from a purely naturalistic evolutionary perspective. So the atheist-materialist is confronted with a second unresolvable metaphysical dilemma: it’s self-evident that humans seek higher meaning and purpose.

    Why would anyone want to become an atheistic-materialist if it’s a world view which one must accept blindly by faith? Ironically that puts materialism in a category that is worse than the very worst of pseudo- religions. It’s nothing but deluded pretension to argue otherwise.

  30. 30
    DerekDiMarco says:

    Rudeness is often born of insecurities.

  31. 31
    Barry Arrington says:

    Hazel

    Might doesn’t make right, Barry

    You say that as if it is objectively true that I did something wrong. That is amusing coming from someone who disputes the existence of objective truth.

  32. 32
    ET says:

    If there isn’t any capital T truth then there isn’t any capital R reality. And that is just crazy talk because the capital T truth is the capital R reality. And there is a capital R reality to our existence

  33. 33
    vividbleau says:

    Hazel
    “ Might doesn’t make it right”
    Barry is correct either might doesn’t make it right is true (T) or it is false. If it’s true your wrong ,it is true (T) if it’s false then it’s not true (T) Pick your poison.
    Vivid

  34. 34
    Barry Arrington says:

    DerekDiMarco @ 30
    Thank you so much for your psychoanalysis. Will you be sending a bill or is this a public service?

  35. 35
    bornagain77 says:

    Hazel, an atheist, states

    “My position is that there is no capital T truth,”

    she also holds her position to be subjective:

    I don’t think my belief that there is no truth with a capital T is a truth with a capital T. That should be obvious.

    Why she personally believes that she gives no reason. Which is just as well because if she could give a coherent, irrefutable, reason why there is no objective Truth with a capital T then it would mean, of course, that it is objectively true that there is no truth with a capitial T. In other words, Hazel’s personal opinion is self-refuting. i.e. If true then not true! Very much similar to the liar’s paradox, i.e. “akin to the well-known liar’s paradox: “This statement is a lie.” If the statement is true, then (as it says) it is not true, but a lie.”

    Why Evolutionary Theory Cannot Survive Itself – Nancy Pearcey – March 8, 2015
    Excerpt: Gray has essentially said, if Darwin’s theory is true, then it “serves evolutionary success, not truth.” In other words, if Darwin’s theory is true, then it is not true.
    Self-referential absurdity is akin to the well-known liar’s paradox: “This statement is a lie.” If the statement is true, then (as it says) it is not true, but a lie.,,,
    Of course, the atheist pursuing his research has no choice but to rely on rationality, just as everyone else does. The point is that he has no philosophical basis for doing so. Only those who affirm a rational Creator have a basis for trusting human rationality.
    https://evolutionnews.org/2015/03/why_evolutionar/

    But anyways, although Hazel, (for whatever severely misguided self-refuting reason), may find it desirable to deny that truth with a capital T exists, science itself, especially physics, is predicated on the belief that truth with a capital T exists.

    The practice of science itself is not only a search for various truths about reality but is also, ultimately, primarily a search for the truth with a capital T about reality.

    The search for the ultimate truth about reality in science takes the form of trying to find the hypothetical final mathematical ‘theory of everything’. It is hoped that this hypothetical final ‘theory of everything’ will be ‘capable of describing all phenomena in the universe.’

    Theory of everything
    Excerpt: a theoretical framework revealing a deeper underlying reality,,,, a single theory that, in principle, is capable of describing all phenomena in the universe.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_everything

    In its present form this search for the “Theory of Everything”, i.e this search for truth with a capital T, entails trying to mathematically unify general relativity and quantum field theory, (which is the unification quantum mechanics and special relativity),

    As the following article states, “The first attempt at unifying relativity and quantum mechanics took place when special relativity was merged with electromagnetism. This created the theory of quantum electrodynamics, or QED. It is an example of what has come to be known as relativistic quantum field theory, or just quantum field theory. QED is considered by most physicists to be the most precise theory of natural phenomena ever developed.”

    Theories of the Universe: Quantum Mechanics vs. General Relativity
    Excerpt: The first attempt at unifying relativity and quantum mechanics took place when special relativity was merged with electromagnetism. This created the theory of quantum electrodynamics, or QED. It is an example of what has come to be known as relativistic quantum field theory, or just quantum field theory. QED is considered by most physicists to be the most precise theory of natural phenomena ever developed.
    In the 1960s and ’70s, the success of QED prompted other physicists to try an analogous approach to unifying the weak, the strong, and the gravitational forces. Out of these discoveries came another set of theories that merged the strong and weak forces called quantum chromodynamics, or QCD, and quantum electroweak theory, or simply the electroweak theory, which you’ve already been introduced to.
    If you examine the forces and particles that have been combined in the theories we just covered, you’ll notice that the obvious force missing is that of gravity (i.e. General Relativity).
    http://www.infoplease.com/cig/.....ivity.html

    Quantum field theory – History
    Excerpt: ,,, (Quantum field theory) QFT is an unavoidable consequence of the reconciliation of quantum mechanics with special relativity (Weinberg (1995)),,,
    The first achievement of quantum field theory, namely quantum electrodynamics (QED), is “still the paradigmatic example of a successful quantum field theory” (Weinberg (1995)).
    per wikipedia

    Interestingly, “Although quantum field theory is fully compatible with the special theory of relativity, a relativistic treatment of quantum measurement has yet to be formulated.”, i.e. conscious observation was dropped by the wayside in QFT!

    Not So Real – Sheldon Lee Glashow – Oct. 2018
    Review of: “What Is Real? The Unfinished Quest for the Meaning of Quantum Physics”
    by Adam Becker
    Excerpt: Heisenberg, Schrödinger, and their contemporaries knew well that the theory they devised could not be made compatible with Einstein’s special theory of relativity. First order in time, but second order in space, Schrödinger’s equation is nonrelativistic. Although quantum field theory is fully compatible with the special theory of relativity, a relativistic treatment of quantum measurement has yet to be formulated.
    https://inference-review.com/article/not-so-real

    In other words, they left conscious observation itself, (which is, IMHO, by far the most interesting aspect of quantum mechanics), on the cutting room floor when they unified special relativity and quantum mechanics.

    Richard Feynman (and others) were only able to unify special relativity and quantum mechanics into Quantum Electrodynamics by quote unquote “brushing infinity under the rug” with a technique called Renormalization.

    THE INFINITY PUZZLE: Quantum Field Theory and the Hunt for an Orderly Universe
    Excerpt: In quantum electrodynamics, which applies quantum mechanics to the electromagnetic field and its interactions with matter, the equations led to infinite results for the self-energy or mass of the electron. After nearly two decades of effort, this problem was solved after World War II by a procedure called renormalization, in which the infinities are rolled up into the electron’s observed mass and charge, and are thereafter conveniently ignored. Richard Feynman, who shared the 1965 Nobel Prize with Julian Schwinger and Sin-Itiro Tomonaga for this breakthrough, referred to this sleight of hand as “brushing infinity under the rug.”
    http://www.americanscientist.o.....g-infinity

    And whereas special relativity, by ‘brushing infinity under the rug’, has been semi-successfully unified, (i.e. save for quantum measurement), with quantum theory to produce Quantum Electrodynamics and/or Quantum Field Theory, no such mathematical ‘sleight of hand’ exists for unifying general relativity with quantum mechanics.

    General relativity, as the following articles show, simply refuses to be mathematically unified with quantum mechanics in any acceptable way. In technical terms, Gravity has yet to be successfully included into a theory of everything since the infinities that crop up in that attempt are not renormalizable as they were in Quantum-Electrodynamics.

    Does quantum mechanics contradict the theory of relativity?
    Sanjay Sood, Microchip Design Engineer, Theoretical and Applied Physicist – Feb 14, 2016
    Excerpt: quantum mechanics was first integrated with special theory of relativity by Dirac in 1928 just 3 years after quantum mechanics was discovered. Dirac produced an equation that describes the behavior of a quantum particle (electron). In this equation the space and time enter on the same footing – equation is first order in all 4 coordinates. One startling by product of this equation was the prediction of anti matter. It also gave the correct explanation for the electron’s spin. Dirac’s equation treats an electron as a particle with only a finite degrees of freedom.
    In 1940s Dirac’s equation was incorporated into the relativistic quantum field theory that’s knowns as quantum electrodynamics (QED) independently by Feynman, Schwinger and Tomonaga. This is the theory that describes the behavior of electrons and photons and their interactions with each other in terms of relativistic quantum fields that have infinite degrees of freedom. QED allowed extremely precise calculation of anomalous magnetic dipole moment of an electron. This calculated value matches the experimentally measured value to an astonishing precision of 12 decimal places!
    The integration of Einstein’s general theory of relativity and quantum mechanics has proved to be far more difficult. Such an integration would give a quantum theory of gravity. Even after a sustained effort lasting more than half a century, no renormalized quantum field theory of gravity has ever been produced. Renormalization means a theory that’s free of infinities at zero distance or infinite energy because 2 point particles can interact with each other at zero distance. A non renormalizable theory has no predictive value because it contains an infinite number of singular coefficients.
    https://www.quora.com/Does-quantum-mechanics-contradict-the-theory-of-relativity

    Unified field theory
    Excerpt: Gravity has yet to be successfully included in a theory of everything.
    Simply trying to combine the graviton with the strong and electroweak interactions runs into fundamental difficulties since the resulting theory is not renormalizable. Theoretical physicists have not yet formulated a widely accepted, consistent theory that combines general relativity and quantum mechanics. The incompatibility of the two theories remains an outstanding problem in the field of physics.
    Some theoretical physicists currently believe that a quantum theory of general relativity may require frameworks other than field theory itself, such as string theory or loop quantum gravity.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unified_field_theory#Current_status

    Quantum Leaps – Jeremy Bernstein – October 19, 2018
    Excerpt: Divergent series notwithstanding, quantum electrodynamics yielded results of remarkable accuracy. Consider the magnetic moment of the electron. This calculation, which has been calculated up to the fifth order in ?, agrees with experiment to ten parts in a billion. If one continued the calculation to higher and higher orders, at some point the series would begin to break down. There is no sign of that as yet. Why not carry out a similar program for gravitation? One can readily write down the Feynman graphs that represent the terms in the expansion. Yet there remains an irremediable difficulty. Every order reveals new types of infinities, and no finite number of renormalizations renders all the terms in the series finite.
    The theory is not renormalizable.
    https://inference-review.com/article/quantum-leaps
    Jeremy Bernstein is professor emeritus of physics at the Stevens Institute of Technology.

  36. 36
    bornagain77 says:

    Moreover, Gödel’s incompleteness theorem has now been extended to physics and is not just some abstract mathematical limit that prevents there from ever being a mathematical ‘theory of everything’ but is now shown to be, in actuality, a defining feature of reality: In the following article entitled ‘Quantum physics problem proved unsolvable: Gödel and Turing enter quantum physics’, which studied the derivation of macroscopic properties from a complete microscopic description, the researchers remark that even a perfect and complete description of the microscopic properties of a material is not enough to predict its macroscopic behaviour.,,, The researchers further commented that their findings challenge the reductionists’ point of view, as the insurmountable difficulty lies precisely in the derivation of macroscopic properties from a microscopic description.”

    Quantum physics problem proved unsolvable: Gödel and Turing enter quantum physics – December 9, 2015
    Excerpt: A mathematical problem underlying fundamental questions in particle and quantum physics is provably unsolvable,,,
    It is the first major problem in physics for which such a fundamental limitation could be proven. The findings are important because they show that even a perfect and complete description of the microscopic properties of a material is not enough to predict its macroscopic behaviour.,,,
    “We knew about the possibility of problems that are undecidable in principle since the works of Turing and Gödel in the 1930s,” added Co-author Professor Michael Wolf from Technical University of Munich. “So far, however, this only concerned the very abstract corners of theoretical computer science and mathematical logic. No one had seriously contemplated this as a possibility right in the heart of theoretical physics before. But our results change this picture. From a more philosophical perspective, they also challenge the reductionists’ point of view, as the insurmountable difficulty lies precisely in the derivation of macroscopic properties from a microscopic description.”
    http://phys.org/news/2015-12-q.....godel.html

    Simply put, despite how much people may believe that there must be a single mathematical ‘theory of everything’ that exist out there somewhere, there, in fact, never will be a single mathematical theory of everything that links the microscopic world of quantum mechanics to the macroscopic world of General Relativity.

    And yet, all is not lost in our search for a “Theory of Everything” and/or in our search for truth with a capital T.

    I firmly believe that the true reconciliation of Quantum Mechanics and General Relativity into the much sought after ‘theory of everything’ was successfully accomplished in Jesus Christ’s resurrection from the dead. And that this fact is testified to by noting the physical details that are revealed in a detailed examination of the Shroud of Turin.

    Basically and succinctly, allowing the Agent causality of God ‘back’ into physics, as the Christian founders of modern science originally envisioned,,,, (Isaac Newton, Michael Faraday, James Clerk Maxwell, and Max Planck, to name a few of the Christian founders),,, and as quantum mechanics itself now empirically demands (with the closing of the free will loophole by Anton Zeilinger and company), by rightly allowing the Agent causality of God ‘back’ into physics then that provides us with a very plausible resolution for the much sought after ‘theory of everything’ in that Christ’s resurrection from the dead provides an empirically backed reconciliation, via the Shroud of Turin, between quantum mechanics and general relativity into the much sought after ‘Theory of Everything”. Here are a few posts where I lay out and defend some of the evidence for that claim:

    Overturning of the Copernican Principle by both General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/we-are-invited-to-consider-a-simpler-perspective-on-the-laws-of-physics/#comment-680427

    (February 19, 2019) To support Isabel Piczek’s claim that the Shroud of Turin does indeed reveal a true ‘event horizon’, the following study states that ‘The bottom part of the cloth (containing the dorsal image) would have born all the weight of the man’s supine body, yet the dorsal image is not encoded with a greater amount of intensity than the frontal image.’,,,
    Moreover, besides gravity being dealt with, the shroud also gives us evidence that Quantum Mechanics was dealt with. In the following paper, it was found that it was not possible to describe the image formation on the Shroud in classical terms but they found it necessary to describe the formation of the image on the Shroud in discrete quantum terms.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/experiment-quantum-particles-can-violate-the-mathematical-pigeonhole-principle/#comment-673178
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/experiment-quantum-particles-can-violate-the-mathematical-pigeonhole-principle/#comment-673179

    To give us a small glimpse of the power that was involved in Christ’s resurrection from the dead, the following recent article found that, ”it would take 34 Thousand Billion Watts of VUV radiations to make the image on the shroud. This output of electromagnetic energy remains beyond human technology.”

    Astonishing discovery at Christ’s tomb supports Turin Shroud – NOV 26TH 2016
    Excerpt: The first attempts made to reproduce the face on the Shroud by radiation, used a CO2 laser which produced an image on a linen fabric that is similar at a macroscopic level. However, microscopic analysis showed a coloring that is too deep and many charred linen threads, features that are incompatible with the Shroud image. Instead, the results of ENEA “show that a short and intense burst of VUV directional radiation can color a linen cloth so as to reproduce many of the peculiar characteristics of the body image on the Shroud of Turin, including shades of color, the surface color of the fibrils of the outer linen fabric, and the absence of fluorescence”.
    ‘However, Enea scientists warn, “it should be noted that the total power of VUV radiations required to instantly color the surface of linen that corresponds to a human of average height, body surface area equal to = 2000 MW/cm2 17000 cm2 = 34 thousand billion watts makes it impractical today to reproduce the entire Shroud image using a single laser excimer, since this power cannot be produced by any VUV light source built to date (the most powerful available on the market come to several billion watts )”.
    Comment
    The ENEA study of the Holy Shroud of Turin concluded that it would take 34 Thousand Billion Watts of VUV radiations to make the image on the shroud. This output of electromagnetic energy remains beyond human technology.
    http://westvirginianews.blogsp.....in-is.html

    Verses:

    John 14:6
    Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

    John 8:32
    Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

    Colossians 1:15-20
    The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

    Supplemental notes:

    Twenty Arguments God’s Existence – Peter Kreeft
    Excerpt: 11. The Argument from Truth
    This argument is closely related to the argument from consciousness. It comes mainly from Augustine.
    1. Our limited minds can discover eternal truths about being.
    2. Truth properly resides in a mind.
    3. But the human mind is not eternal.
    4. Therefore there must exist an eternal mind in which these truths reside.
    https://www.peterkreeft.com/topics-more/20_arguments-gods-existence.htm#11

    Dr. Ed Feser – The Immateriality of the Intellect – video
    Excerpt:
    1: Formal thought processes can have an exact or unambiguous conceptual content.
    However,
    2: Nothing material can have an exact or unambiguous conceptual content.
    So,
    3: Formal thought processes are not material.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNi0j19ZSpo

  37. 37
    Ed George says:

    Average word count per comment by year for BA77

    2007: 329
    2008: 211
    2009: 302
    2010: 275
    2011: 367
    2012: 416
    2013: 414
    2014: 501
    2015: 573
    2016: 706
    2017: 797
    2018: 786
    2019: 998

    I can only assume that BA77 is three times more convincing in his arguments in 2019 than he was in 2007. 🙂 that is impressive.

  38. 38
    DerekDiMarco says:

    @Ed: those numbers look way too low.

  39. 39
    Ed George says:

    DDM

    @Ed: those numbers look way too low.

    My understanding is that these are based on an arithmetic mean. A better indication would be the median or other robust estimates of the central tendency. Something like algorithm A from ISO 13528.

  40. 40
    Barry Arrington says:

    The materialists whine about the length of BA’s posts. I guess since the can’t refute his posts they feel like they have to say something.

  41. 41
    DerekDiMarco says:

    That’s why nobody engages with those comments. They’re just too logically powerful.

  42. 42
    john_a_designer says:

    Several years ago on a different site I got into a discussion about same sex marriage.

    Our interlocutor had responded to a question in the OP.

    Here’s an answer to your question… There is nothing “essentially true” about marriage. Marriage is what we agree it is (or what most of us agree it is.)
    There is no “essential truth” about anything.

    I replied:

    It is self-refuting to say there is ”no ‘essential truth’ about anything.” Didn’t you notice that you’re making an essential [indeed universal] truth claim about truth. Furthermore it takes the legs out from under every argument you have been making. Why should I even consider an argument that’s not true?

    This is why I have given up trying to argue with moral subjectivists. They don’t understand the irrationality of their argument. Logic 101 says you can’t prove anything deductively unless you begin with a factually true or self-evidently true premise. Again, the premise there is “no ‘essential truth’ about anything,” is self-refuting, which is basically the argument the subjectivist is making. All the subjectivist has are moral opinions he believes are true for him. However, no-one else is obligated to accept his moral opinions. The subjectivist is then left with a “morality” that has no moral obligation. What value is such a moral system? The answer is obvious: zero value.

  43. 43
    bornagain77 says:

    as to:

    That’s why nobody engages with those comments. They’re just too logically powerful.

    correction:

    That’s why no atheist, such as myself, hardly ever engages with those comments. They’re just too logically powerful* and the intellectual bankruptcy of my atheism will be exposed for all to see.

    There, all better!

    *The logic is not really all that powerful, as John_a_designer pointed out in comment 42, it’s just basic logic 101.

    A few related notes:

    Naturalism and Self-Refutation – Michael Egnor – January 31, 2018
    Excerpt: Furthermore, the very framework of Clark’s argument — logic — is neither material nor natural. Logic, after all, doesn’t exist “in the space-time continuum” and isn’t described by physics. What is the location of modus ponens? How much does Gödel’s incompleteness theorem weigh? What is the physics of non-contradiction? How many millimeters long is Clark’s argument for naturalism? Ironically the very logic that Clark employs to argue for naturalism is outside of any naturalistic frame.
    The strength of Clark’s defense of naturalism is that it is an attempt to present naturalism’s tenets clearly and logically. That is its weakness as well, because it exposes naturalism to scrutiny, and naturalism cannot withstand even minimal scrutiny. Even to define naturalism is to refute it.
    https://evolutionnews.org/2018/01/naturalism-and-self-refutation/

    Is God Real? Evidence from the Laws of Logic – J. Warner Wallace
    Excerpt: All rational discussions (even those about the existence or non-existence of God) require the prior foundation of logical absolutes. You’d have a hard time making sense of any conversation if the Laws of Logic weren’t available to guide the discussion and provide rational boundaries. Here are three of the most important Laws of Logic you and I use every day:
    The Law of Identity
    Things “are” what they “are”. “A” is “A”. Each thing is the same with itself and different from another. By this it is meant that each thing (be it a universal or a particular) is composed of its own unique set of characteristic qualities or features.
    The Law of Non-Contradiction
    “A” cannot be both “A” and “Non-A” at the same time, in the same way and in the same sense. Contradictory statements cannot both be true in the same sense at the same time.
    The Law of Excluded Middle
    A statement is either true or false. For any proposition, either that proposition is true, or its negation is true. There is no middle position. For example, the claim that “A statement is either true or false” is either true or false.
    These logical rules are necessary in order for us to examine truth statements. We also need them to point out when someone is reasoning illogically. We use the Laws of Logic all the time; you couldn’t even begin to read or reason through this blog post if you didn’t employ these laws. In fact, you’ve never had an intelligent, rational conversation without using these laws. They’re not a matter of subjective opinion; they are, instead, objectively true. So, here’s an important question: “From where do the transcendent, objective laws of logic come?”
    As an atheist, I would have been the first to describe myself as rational. In fact, I saw myself as far more reasonable than many of the Christians I knew. But, I was basing my rationality on my ability to understand and employ the Laws of Logic. How could I account for these transcendent laws without the existence of a transcendent Law Giver?
    (1) The Objective Laws of Logic Exist
    We cannot deny the Laws of Logic exist. In fact, any reasonable or logical argument against the existence of these laws requires their existence in the first place.
    The Objective Laws of Logic Are Conceptual Laws
    These laws are not physical; they are conceptual. They cannot be seen under a microscope or weighed on a scale. They are abstract laws guiding logical, immaterial thought processes.
    The Objective Laws of Logic Are Transcendent
    The laws transcend location, culture and time. If we go forward or backward a million years, the laws of logic would still exist and apply, regardless of culture or geographic location.
    The Objective Laws of Logic Pre-Existed Mankind
    The transcendent and timeless nature of logical laws indicates they precede our existence or ability to recognize them. Even before humans were able to understand the law of non-contradiction, “A” could not have been “Non-A”. The Laws of Logic were discovered by humans, not created by humans.
    (2) All Conceptual Laws Reflect the Mind of a Law Giver
    All laws require law givers, including conceptual laws. We know this from our common experience in the world in which we live. The laws governing our society and culture, for example, are the result and reflection of minds. But more importantly, the conceptual Laws of Logic govern rational thought processes, and for this reason, they require the existence of a mind.
    (3) The Best and Most Reasonable Explanation for the Kind of Mind Necessary for the Existence of the Transcendent, Objective, Conceptual Laws of Logic is God
    The lawgiver capable of producing the immaterial, transcendent laws preceding our existence must also be an immaterial, transcendent and pre-existent mind. This description fits what we commonly think of when we think of a Creator God.,,,
    https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/is-god-real-evidence-from-the-laws-of-logic/

    Verse, quotes, and notes:

    John 1:1
    “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God”

    ‘the Word’ in John1:1 is translated from ‘Logos’ in Greek. Logos is also the root word from which we derive our modern word logic
    http://etymonline.com/?term=logic

    What is the Logos?
    Logos is a Greek word literally translated as “word, speech, or utterance.” However, in Greek philosophy, Logos refers to divine reason or the power that puts sense into the world making order instead of chaos.,,,
    In the Gospel of John, John writes “In the beginning was the Word (Logos), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). John appealed to his readers by saying in essence, “You’ve been thinking, talking, and writing about the Word (divine reason) for centuries and now I will tell you who He is.”
    https://www.compellingtruth.org/what-is-the-Logos.html

    “Think of the irony: a professor of philosophy, who is paid only to reason, uses reason to argue against reason. Welcome to the bowels of atheist metaphysics. It would be funny if it were not so dangerous to our culture and to our souls”
    – AN ATHEIST ARGUES AGAINST REASON
    And thinks it is the reasonable thing to do
    MICHAEL EGNOR MAY 24, 2019
    https://mindmatters.ai/2019/05/an-atheist-argues-against-reason/

    “Atheists can give no reason why they should value reason, and Christians can show how anyone who believes in reason must also believe in God.”
    Cogito; Ergo Deus Est by Charles Edward White
    Philosophy Still Lives Because God Isn’t Dead

    The Argument From Reason – resource page
    http://www.reasonsforgod.org/t.....om-reason/

  44. 44
    Ed George says:

    Barry

    The materialists whine about the length of BA’s posts. I guess since the can’t refute his posts they feel like they have to say something.

    If you are so enamoured of BA77’s writing style and arguments, why have you never given him admin rights to post OPs as you have with KF, Johnyb others?

  45. 45
    Ed George says:

    JaD

    All the subjectivist has are moral opinions he believes are true for him.

    Correct.

    However, no-one else is obligated to accept his moral opinions.

    Unless they share the same moral opinion, or one can convince the other if the value of his moral opinion.

    The subjectivist is then left with a “morality” that has no moral obligation.

    Not preventing same sex marriage is a subjective moral value. It started as something that was only believed by a small minority of society. By argument and rational logic this minority has convinced the majority of society about the moral value of not preventing it. You might argue that this is A legal obligation, not a moral one. But how is this any different than something like murder. There have always been people who don’t feel morally obligated to not kill other people. It is society that imposes this moral value, and others, in their legal systems, whether criminal or civil.

    KF is partially correct when he says that subjective morality is nothing more than might and manipulation make right. I would add self interest, cooperation and the ability to predict and extrapolate consequences of actions and how these consequences could negatively impact your self interest.

  46. 46
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    Not preventing same sex marriage is a subjective moral value.

    No, it isn’t. It is based on the biological fact that two people of the same sex cannot procreate.

    Ed George loves to make stuff up and then think it is supported by his diatribe.

  47. 47
    Ed George says:

    ET

    No, it isn’t. It is based on the biological fact that two people of the same sex cannot procreate.

    Then why don’t we prevent elderly couples to marry? Or men with low sperm counts? Or women who have had a hysterectomy for medical reasons? You have used this argument before and it carries as much weight as it did before. Nada.

  48. 48
    ET says:

    Oh my- Ed must be in desperation mode. People of the same sex cannot procreate. That is the OBJECTIVE reason to disallow same-sex marriages. That is a biological fact that Ed ignores as if his willful ignorance is an argument.

    Only males mating with females can procreate. Sure there are a SMALL % of exceptions but not enough to deny the biological facts.

    Yes, I have used the argument before and will continue to do so because it works. Ed’s desperation and willful ignorance just expose Ed for what he is- a loser without a clue

  49. 49
    Ed George says:

    ET

    November 17, 2019 at 10:12 am
    Oh my- Ed must be in desperation mode. People of the same sex cannot procreate. That is the OBJECTIVE reason to disallow same-sex marriages. That is a biological fact that Ed ignores as if his willful ignorance is an argument.

    Elderly couples can’t procreate. That is the OBJECTIVE fact. Women with hysterectomies can’t procreate. That is an OBJECTIVE fact. Men who have had vasectomies can’t procreate. That is an OBJECTIVE fact. If you are going to use the inability to procreate as rationale to prevent SSM then you have to apply it to all couples who can’t procreate.

  50. 50
    ET says:

    LoL! @ Ed the quote-mining fool.

    Only males mating with females can procreate. Sure there are a SMALL % of exceptions but not enough to deny the biological facts.

    So what does Ed do? Pick on that small %.

    Elderly couples most likely already had kids- so they’re already in the club. And some can still procreate. The others would all depend on the specific CONTEXT. And it is so small of a % that only a desperate fool would think it matters to the overall argument.

    Same-sex couples can NEVER procreate within that relationship. It isn’t as if it happened once and we are certain it will happen again if they keep trying.

    AND it is unnatural- it also goes against the coveted natural selection.

  51. 51
    john_a_designer says:

    What is the point of moral subjectivists like E.G., Hazel or Serversky etc. in even being here? If nobody is right about morality then moral subjectivists like them certainly cannot be right. So why do they persist? What are they trying to prove since even if they irrationally believe they are right they cannot logically prove they are right?

    The only reason that I can think of is that they are self-centered and intolerant. Of course, what else would you expect from a moral subjectivist?

    Obviously moral objectivists do not believe that everybody is right about morality (that’s the point of an objective transcendent standard) but it does not follow from that that nobody is right about morality. The latter is self-refuting because it’s making a universal truth claim about moral truth which is doing exactly what they as subjectivists are claiming cannot be done.

    If they were really intellectually honest about their so-called beliefs E.G. et al would move along because they have nothing to say here. So called moral subjectivism is basically moral nihilism, which is about nothing. Therefore, they have nothing to say.

  52. 52
    Ed George says:

    ET

    So what does Ed do? Pick on that small %.

    It has been said that “A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members.” Allowing same sex couples to marry is one of these measures that makes our nation greater.

  53. 53
    bornagain77 says:

    as to:

    “A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members.”

    Besides the fact that you support abortion, and thus, in reality, could care less about our nation’s weakest members, exactly where do you think that objective moral standard comes from?

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
    Thomas Jefferson
    The Declaration of Independence
    Second Continental Congress
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    The objective morality of God is not just a smorgasbord wherein you can just pick and choose whatever objective moral you want in order to try to justify the immoral behavior of homosexuality.

    Just as God is clear in regards to protecting the weak and defenselessness, like say unborn babies, God is also clear on his view of homosexuality.

    What God Says About Homosexuality
    November 1, 2017 by Dr. Robert Jeffress
    https://www.firstdallas.org/icampus/blog/what-god-says-about-homosexuality/

  54. 54
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    It has been said that “A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members.”

    So now same-sex people are our weakest members? Ed proves that he is a bigot

    Allowing same sex couples to marry is one of these measures that makes our nation greater.

    Quite the opposite. It shows how weak we really are.

  55. 55
    Ed George says:

    BA77

    Besides the fact that you support abortion,..

    Beside the fact that you are putting words in my mouth that I never said..,

    exactly where do you think that objective moral standard comes from?

    Since I don’t believe that there are objective moral standards, your question is irrelevant.

    The objective morality of God is not just a smorgasbord wherein you can just pick and choose whatever objective moral you want in order to try to justify the immoral behavior of homosexuality.

    Is this the same god that instructs you to kill homosexuals, and non virgins? The same god that tells you just how much you can beat your slave? The same god (Jesus) who says that the original laws (killing homosexuals) still stand? Sorry, but I refuse to follow such an intolerant, hateful god.

  56. 56
    ET says:

    Earth to Ed- Supporting a woman’s right to choose is the same as supporting abortion.

    Is this the same god that instructs you to kill homosexuals, and non virgins?

    That was for a specific time and place, Ed.

  57. 57

    .

    Sorry, but I refuse to follow such an intolerant, hateful god.

    Yawn.

    Is it also why you refuse to acknowledge that (under your enlightened worldview) a woman being raped and murdered would need the consensus of others to know for absolute certain, before her impending death, that her feelings of brutalization were valid?

    Is it also why (as you preen and posture for science and reason) that you refuse to acknowledge that a symbol system and language structure were not only predicted to be at the heart of the living cell, but also very famously discovered there, and carefully recorded (as such) in the scientific literature?

  58. 58
    bornagain77 says:

    E.G. appeals to the objective moral of “A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members”, and yet then turns right around and claims that “I don’t believe that there are objective moral standards”.

    I wonder if E.G. would be willing to debate his non-belief in objective morality a little more personally? i.e. I wonder if E.G. would actually be willing to personally face the realistic consequences of his stated belief in the non-existence of objective morality?

    Cruel Logic
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x__pGaIXKic

  59. 59
    Ed George says:

    BA77

    E.G. appeals to the objective moral of “A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members”, and yet then turns right around and claims that “I don’t believe that there are objective moral standards”.

    Nobody said that this was an objective moral. It is obviously a subjective one. And an opinion I support. Don’t you?

  60. 60
    bornagain77 says:

    The fact that Ed George himself cannot live his life as if morality were REALLY illusory and subjective, as he believes, is proof that his belief is delusional.

    As the following article stated, “Nobody thinks his daughter is just molecules in motion and nothing but; nobody thinks the Holocaust was evil, but only in a relative, provisional sense. A materialist who lived his life according to his professed convictions—understanding himself to have no moral agency at all, seeing his friends and enemies and family as genetically determined robots—wouldn’t just be a materialist: He’d be a psychopath.”

    The Heretic – Who is Thomas Nagel and why are so many of his fellow academics condemning him? – March 25, 2013
    Excerpt: ,,,Fortunately, materialism is never translated into life as it’s lived. As colleagues and friends, husbands and mothers, wives and fathers, sons and daughters, materialists never put their money where their mouth is. Nobody thinks his daughter is just molecules in motion and nothing but; nobody thinks the Holocaust was evil, but only in a relative, provisional sense. A materialist who lived his life according to his professed convictions—understanding himself to have no moral agency at all, seeing his friends and enemies and family as genetically determined robots—wouldn’t just be a materialist: He’d be a psychopath.
    http://www.weeklystandard.com/.....tml?page=3

    The following article by Nancy Pearcey lists several examples of leading atheists admitting that it is impossible for them to live their life as if their atheism were actually true:

    Darwin’s Robots: When Evolutionary Materialists Admit that Their Own Worldview Fails – Nancy Pearcey – April 23, 2015
    Excerpt: This is an amazing case of Orwellian doublethink. Minsky says people are “forced to maintain” the conviction of free will, even when their own worldview tells them that “it’s false.”
    When I teach these concepts in the classroom, an example my students find especially poignant is Flesh and Machines by Rodney Brooks, professor emeritus at MIT. Brooks writes that a human being is nothing but a machine — a “big bag of skin full of biomolecules” interacting by the laws of physics and chemistry. In ordinary life, of course, it is difficult to actually see people that way. But, he says, “When I look at my children, I can, when I force myself, … see that they are machines.”
    Is that how he treats them, though? Of course not: “That is not how I treat them…. I interact with them on an entirely different level. They have my unconditional love, the furthest one might be able to get from rational analysis.” Certainly if what counts as “rational” is a materialist worldview in which humans are machines, then loving your children is irrational. It has no basis
    within Brooks’s worldview. It sticks out of his box.
    How does he reconcile such a heart-wrenching cognitive dissonance? He doesn’t. Brooks ends by saying, “I maintain two sets of inconsistent beliefs.” He has given up on any attempt to reconcile his theory with his experience. He has abandoned all hope for a unified, logically consistent worldview.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....95451.html

    Richard Dawkins himself admitted that it would be ‘intolerable’ for him to live his life as if his atheistic materialism were actually true

    Who wrote Richard Dawkins’s new book? – October 28, 2006
    Excerpt:
    Dawkins: What I do know is that what it feels like to me, and I think to all of us, we don’t feel determined. We feel like blaming people for what they do or giving people the credit for what they do. We feel like admiring people for what they do.,,,
    Manzari: But do you personally see that as an inconsistency in your views?
    Dawkins: I sort of do. Yes. But it is an inconsistency that we sort of have to live with otherwise life would be intolerable.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....02783.html

    In what should be needless to say, if it is impossible for you to live as if your worldview were actually true then your worldview cannot possibly reflect reality as it really is but your worldview must instead be based on a delusion.

    Existential Argument against Atheism – November 1, 2013 by Jason Petersen
    1. If a worldview is true then you should be able to live consistently with that worldview.
    2. Atheists are unable to live consistently with their worldview.
    3. If you can’t live consistently with an atheist worldview then the worldview does not reflect reality.
    4. If a worldview does not reflect reality then that worldview is a delusion.
    5. If atheism is a delusion then atheism cannot be true.
    Conclusion: Atheism is false.
    http://answersforhope.com/exis.....t-atheism/

    Moreover, in order to reject God, E.G. had to steal objective morality from God,,, he stated,,

    Is this the same god that instructs you to kill homosexuals, and non virgins? The same god that tells you just how much you can beat your slave? The same god (Jesus) who says that the original laws (killing homosexuals) still stand? Sorry, but I refuse to follow such an intolerant, hateful god.

    Although E.G.’s interpretation of scripture is juvenile at best, just where does E.G. get his objective moral standard that it is wrong to harm and kill other people? On the one hand he wants to condemn God for his falsely supposed moral transgressions, yet on the other hand he denies the existence of objective morality.

    Simply put, Atheists have to steal objective morality from Theism in order to attack God in the first place. Atheism simply cannot ground morality of any reasonable sort:

    The Universe Reflects a Mind – Michael Egnor – February 28, 2018
    Excerpt: Goff argues that a Mind is manifest in the natural world, but he discounts the existence of God because of the problem of evil. Goff seriously misunderstands the problem of evil. Evil is an insoluble problem for atheists, because if there is no God, there is no objective standard by which evil and good can exist or can even be defined. If God does not exist, “good” and “evil” are merely human opinions. Yet we all know, as Kant observed, that some things are evil in themselves, and not merely as a matter of opinion. Even to raise the problem of evil is to tacitly acknowledge transcendent standards, and thus to acknowledge God’s existence. From that starting point, theodicy begins. Theists have explored it profoundly. Atheists lack the standing even to ask the question.,,,
    https://evolutionnews.org/2018/02/the-universe-reflects-a-mind/

    For atheists to have to ‘borrow’ objective morality from Theists in order to attack God (and Christians) as somehow being morally deficient is again, as Cornelius Van Til put it, “like the child who must climb up onto his father’s lap into order to slap his face.”

    “Hawking’s entire argument is built upon theism. He is, as Cornelius Van Til put it, like the child who must climb up onto his father’s lap into order to slap his face.
    Take that part about the “human mind” for example. Under atheism there is no such thing as a mind. There is no such thing as understanding and no such thing as truth. All Hawking is left with is a box, called a skull, which contains a bunch of molecules. Hawking needs God In order to deny Him.”
    – Cornelius Hunter

    Of supplemental note: Out of all the mono-Theistic religions, only the grace inherent within Christianity realistically and sufficiently bridges the infinite moral gap between God’s moral perfection and humanity’s moral imperfection. The unmerited grace of Christ bridging that infinite moral gap on the behalf of humans is called “propitiation”:

    Top Ten Reasons We Know the New Testament is True – Frank Turek – video – November 2011
    (41:00 minute mark – Despite what is commonly believed, of someone being ‘good enough’ to go to heaven, in reality both Mother Teresa and Hitler fall short of the moral perfection required to meet the perfection of God’s objective moral code)
    http://saddleback.com/mc/m/5e22f/

    Tim Keller – The Mountain – The Terrifying and Beckoning God – (the unapproachable God of the old testament vs. the approachable God of the new testament) – sermon
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C6tnnU_wUi8

    G.O.S.P.E.L. – (the grace of propitiation) poetry slam – video
    https://vimeo.com/20960385

    Verse and video:

    1 Peter 3:18
    For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit,

    Turin Shroud Hologram Reveals The Words “The Lamb”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Tmka1l8GAQ

  61. 61
    Ed George says:

    BA77

    The fact that Ed George himself cannot live his life as if morality were REALLY illusory and subjective, as he believes, is proof that his belief is delusional.

    I have no idea what you are saying. And I’m sure that your following 1000+ words don’t clarify the issue.

    All I want to know is if you think that the measure of the greatness of a nation is how it treats its weakest groups? A simple yes or no will do.

  62. 62
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    All I want to know is if you think that the measure of the greatness of a nation is how it treats its weakest groups?

    I hope not as the unborn are the weakest group and we slaughter them.

  63. 63
    bornagain77 says:

    Besides the fact that atheists themselves are unable to live their lives as if morality were REALLY illusory and subjective, I can also appeal to empirical evidence to support the Christian’s claim that morality is objective and real.

    Since unguided Darwinian processes have never shown the origination of even a single gene and/or protein,

    Stephen Meyer (and Doug Axe) Critique Richard Dawkins’s “Mount Improbable” – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7rgainpMXa8

    , then it is very interesting to note that the expression of gene networks in humans are designed in a very sophisticated way so as to differentiate between hedonic moral happiness and ‘noble’ moral happiness: The following paper states that there are hidden costs of purely hedonic well-being.,, “At the cellular level, our bodies appear to respond better to a different kind of well-being, one based on a sense of connectedness and purpose.”

    Human Cells Respond in Healthy, Unhealthy Ways to Different Kinds of Happiness – July 29, 2013
    Excerpt: Human bodies recognize at the molecular level that not all happiness is created equal, responding in ways that can help or hinder physical health,,,
    The sense of well-being derived from “a noble purpose” may provide cellular health benefits, whereas “simple self-gratification” may have negative effects, despite an overall perceived sense of happiness, researchers found.,,,
    But if all happiness is created equal, and equally opposite to ill-being, then patterns of gene expression should be the same regardless of hedonic or eudaimonic well-being. Not so, found the researchers.
    Eudaimonic well-being was, indeed, associated with a significant decrease in the stress-related CTRA gene expression profile. In contrast, hedonic well-being was associated with a significant increase in the CTRA profile. Their genomics-based analyses, the authors reported, reveal the hidden costs of purely hedonic well-being.,,
    “We can make ourselves happy through simple pleasures, but those ‘empty calories’ don’t help us broaden our awareness or build our capacity in ways that benefit us physically,” she said. “At the cellular level, our bodies appear to respond better to a different kind of well-being, one based on a sense of connectedness and purpose.”
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....161952.htm

    Moreover, and as would be expected if morality were objectively real as Christians hold, it is now found that atheists suffer physically and mentally as a result of forsaking the objective reality of morality in general and from forsaking God in particular. Professor Andrew Sims former President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists states that ‘The advantageous effect of religious belief and spirituality on mental and physical health is one of the best-kept secrets in psychiatry and medicine generally.’,,, lower rates of depression and faster recovery from depression; lower rates of suicide and fewer positive attitudes towards suicide; less anxiety; less psychosis and fewer psychotic tendencies; lower rates of alcohol and drug use and abuse; less delinquency and criminal activity; greater marital stability and satisfaction…

    “I maintain that whatever else faith may be, it cannot be a delusion.
    The advantageous effect of religious belief and spirituality on mental and physical health is one of the best-kept secrets in psychiatry and medicine generally. If the findings of the huge volume of research on this topic had gone in the opposite direction and it had been found that religion damages your mental health, it would have been front-page news in every newspaper in the land.”
    – Professor Andrew Sims former President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists – Is Faith Delusion?: Why religion is good for your health – preface
    https://books.google.com/books?id=PREdCgAAQBAJ&pg=PR11#v=onepage&q&f=false
    “In the majority of studies, religious involvement is correlated with well-being, happiness and life satisfaction; hope and optimism; purpose and meaning in life; higher self-esteem; better adaptation to bereavement; greater social support and less loneliness; lower rates of depression and faster recovery from depression; lower rates of suicide and fewer positive attitudes towards suicide; less anxiety; less psychosis and fewer psychotic tendencies; lower rates of alcohol and drug use and abuse; less delinquency and criminal activity; greater marital stability and satisfaction… We concluded that for the vast majority of people the apparent benefits of devout belief and practice probably outweigh the risks.”
    – Professor Andrew Sims former President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists – Is Faith Delusion?: Why religion is good for your health – page 100
    https://books.google.com/books?id=PREdCgAAQBAJ&pg=PA100#v=onepage&q&f=false

    And the following meta-analysis of studies found that Active religious involvement increased the chance of living longer by some 29%, and participation in public religious practices, such as church attendance, increased the chance of living longer by 43%.

    Atheism and health
    A meta-analysis of all studies, both published and unpublished, relating to religious involvement and longevity was carried out in 2000. Forty-two studies were included, involving some 126,000 subjects. Active religious involvement increased the chance of living longer by some 29%, and participation in public religious practices, such as church attendance, increased the chance of living longer by 43%.[4][5]
    http://www.conservapedia.com/Atheism_and_health

    Can attending church really help you live longer? This study says yes – June 1, 2017
    Excerpt: Specifically, the study says those middle-aged adults who go to church, synagogues, mosques or other houses of worship reduce their mortality risk by 55%. The Plos One journal published the “Church Attendance, Allostatic Load and Mortality in Middle Aged Adults” study May 16.
    “For those who did not attend church at all, they were twice as likely to die prematurely than those who did who attended church at some point over the last year,” Bruce said.
    https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/06/02/can-attending-church-really-help-you-live-longer-study-says-yes/364375001/

  64. 64
    bornagain77 says:

    Moreover, the following studies actually show that our moral intuition itself transcends space and time: Specifically, in the following study, They found that subjects responded strongly to emotional images compared to neutral images, and that the emotional response occurred between a fraction of a second to several seconds BEFORE the image appeared

    Quantum Consciousness – Time Flies Backwards? – Stuart Hameroff MD
    Excerpt: Dean Radin and Dick Bierman have performed a number of experiments of emotional response in human subjects. The subjects view a computer screen on which appear (at randomly varying intervals) a series of images, some of which are emotionally neutral, and some of which are highly emotional (violent, sexual….). In Radin and Bierman’s early studies, skin conductance of a finger was used to measure physiological response They found that subjects responded strongly to emotional images compared to neutral images, and that the emotional response occurred between a fraction of a second to several seconds BEFORE the image appeared! Recently Professor Bierman (University of Amsterdam) repeated these experiments with subjects in an fMRI brain imager and found emotional responses in brain activity up to 4 seconds before the stimuli. Moreover he looked at raw data from other laboratories and found similar emotional responses before stimuli appeared.
    http://www.quantumconsciousnes.....Flies.html

    And in the following meta-analysis of 26 reports published between 1978 and 2010, the researchers found that your body can anticipate morally troubling situations between two and 10 seconds before it happens

    Can Your Body Sense Future Events Without Any External Clue? (meta-analysis of 26 reports published between 1978 and 2010) – (Oct. 22, 2012)
    Excerpt: “A person playing a video game at work while wearing headphones, for example, can’t hear when his or her boss is coming around the corner.
    But our analysis suggests that if you were tuned into your body, you might be able to detect these anticipatory changes between two and 10 seconds beforehand,,,
    This phenomenon is sometimes called “presentiment,” as in “sensing the future,” but Mossbridge said she and other researchers are not sure whether people are really sensing the future.
    “I like to call the phenomenon ‘anomalous anticipatory activity,'” she said. “The phenomenon is anomalous, some scientists argue, because we can’t explain it using present-day understanding about how biology works; though explanations related to recent quantum biological findings could potentially make sense. It’s anticipatory because it seems to predict future physiological changes in response to an important event without any known clues, and it’s an activity because it consists of changes in the cardiopulmonary, skin and nervous systems.”
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....145342.htm

    Moreover, in the preceding paper one of the researchers remarked that ‘we can’t explain (the anticipatory activity of the body) using present-day understanding about how biology works; though explanations related to recent quantum biological findings could potentially make sense.’… And, exactly as she thought, quantum biological findings do indeed shed light how it might be possible for the body to anticipate morally troubling situations before they happen. In fact, as this following video shows,,

    Darwinian Materialism vs. Quantum Biology – Part II – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSig2CsjKbg

    , findings in quantum biology go much further and gives us strong physical evidence that humans possess a transcendent component to their being on the molecular level that is not reducible to the materialistic explanations of Darwinian evolution.

    Looking beyond space and time to cope with quantum theory – 29 October 2012
    Excerpt: “Our result gives weight to the idea that quantum correlations somehow arise from outside spacetime, in the sense that no story in space and time can describe them,”
    http://www.quantumlah.org/high.....uences.php

    That is to say, findings from quantum biology now give us experimental evidence strongly suggesting we do indeed have a transcendent ‘soul’ that is capable of living beyond the death of our material bodies just as Christians have held all along.

    As Stuart Hameroff states in the following article, the quantum information,,, isn’t destroyed. It can’t be destroyed.,,, it’s possible that this quantum information can exist outside the body. Perhaps indefinitely as a soul.”

    Leading Scientists Say Consciousness Cannot Die It Goes Back To The Universe – Oct. 19, 2017 – Spiritual
    Excerpt: “Let’s say the heart stops beating. The blood stops flowing. The microtubules lose their quantum state. But the quantum information, which is in the microtubules, isn’t destroyed. It can’t be destroyed. It just distributes and dissipates to the universe at large. If a patient is resuscitated, revived, this quantum information can go back into the microtubules and the patient says, “I had a near death experience. I saw a white light. I saw a tunnel. I saw my dead relatives.,,” Now if they’re not revived and the patient dies, then it’s possible that this quantum information can exist outside the body. Perhaps indefinitely as a soul.”
    – Stuart Hameroff – Quantum Entangled Consciousness – Life After Death – video (5:00 minute mark)
    https://www.disclose.tv/leading-scientists-say-consciousness-cannot-die-it-goes-back-to-the-universe-315604

    Verse:

    Mark 8:37
    Is anything worth more than your soul?

    Thus besides the fact that atheists themselves cannot live their lives as if objective morality does not really exist, the Christian can also appeal to empirical evidence itself that indicates that morality is indeed objectively real.

    Verse:

    Romans 2:14-15
    Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the Law, do by nature what the Law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the Law, since they show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts either accusing or defending them.…

  65. 65
    john_a_designer says:

    Here is a BBC article (a “secular” source) which discusses the difference between moral subjectivism vs. objectivism. Consider a few of the points the article makes:

    “If I approve of something, it must be good”

    Subjectivism seems to tell us that moral statements give information only about what we feel about moral issues.

    If the simplest form of subjectivism is true then when a person who genuinely approves of telling lies says “telling lies is good” that moral statement is unarguably true. It would only be untrue if the speaker didn’t approve of telling lies.

    So under this theory it seems that all the speaker has to do to prove that lying is good is to show lots of evidence that they do indeed approve of lying – perhaps that they tell lots of lies and feel good about it, indeed are surprised if anyone criticises them for being a liar, and that they often praise other people for telling lies.

    Most people would find this way of approaching ethics somewhat unhelpful, and wouldn’t think it reflected the way in which most people talk about ethical issues.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/ethics/in.....vism.shtml

    Focusing in on just one of the points above; the objectivist would argue that that there must be a real standard of honesty that applies universally to all members of society. Indeed, society would break down if people weren’t obligated to be honest and tell the truth. Think of government, criminal justice or commerce. When people are dishonest our fundamental and basic institutions begin to break down.

  66. 66
    Ed George says:

    ET

    I hope not as the unborn are the weakest group and we slaughter them.

    I have not slaughtered a single one. Have you?

  67. 67
    es58 says:

    Ed George@66:
    I have not slaughtered a single one. Have you?
    Said during WWII by 1 German to another about Jews.
    Must be nothing to worry about then.

  68. 68
    john_a_designer says:

    Ironically, the secularism and atheism we presently see infecting the culture of western societies is actually a Christian heresy. I think if we trace the history we see that on the one hand, the roots go back to the Protestant Reformation, on the other, the French revolution. There were no avowed atheists in “Christian” Europe before the Protestant Reformation. If you can think of one, tell me.

    I’m not saying that the Protestant Reformation was bad in and of itself but that rather as a byproduct it gave rise to some heterodox thinking that led to theological liberalism which in turn has “evolved” or mutated into secular progressivism and militant atheism. As Christian heresies secularism and atheism have held on to and perverted vestiges of Christian ethics and morality. For example, our modern concept of human rights is a distinctly Judeo-Christian. While we see subtle hints of it in ancient Greek and Roman thinking, the substance is unequivocally Judeo-Christian.

    John Zmirak summarizes this historical trend nicely in an article he has written for The Stream.

    The way that leftists unwittingly do this devil’s work is to take some element of Christian ethics and grossly exaggerate it, cut it off from any context, and make of it an idol. Hence “compassion,” “inclusiveness,” “social justice” or “equality” take the place of the person of Jesus and become the object of worship. C.S. Lewis warned against this temptation in Mere Christianity and The Screwtape Letters. In its fullest form, such political idolatry can be seen in Liberation Theology, which perverts the church into a revolutionary Marxist vanguard.

    https://stream.org/trump-voting-christians-liberal-pastors-get-crying-wolf/

  69. 69
    massam says:

    Ed George @37 and DDM @41

    I find BA’s comments very convincing. As I am naturally skeptical about everything, it’s good to see that he supports his position with facts and resources, unlike most of your claims and assertions. The reason his word count is so high is that he links the quotes that he is using from the source, so that we don’t have to open 15 different tabs at once to understand his argument.

    If you have a problem with his word count, then I suggest both of you work on your comprehension skills. Until then, complaining that his “posts are too long” is not a valid response to an argument.

  70. 70
    ET says:

    Ed George, quote-mining fool, strikes again. In comment 63 we read:

    (ET)-I hope not as the unborn are the weakest group and we slaughter them.

    Ed George:
    I have not slaughtered a single one. Have you?

    No Ed, but the CONTEXT of my quote is:

    All I want to know is if you think that the measure of the greatness of a nation is how it treats its weakest groups?

    I am NOT the USA, ie NATION, Ed. And YOU are not whatever country/ nation that you come from.

    How sad are you that you have to constantly quote-mine? Quote-mining is immoral, Ed.

  71. 71
    john_a_designer says:

    In 2013, on another site, I had this brief exchange on-line with someone who identified himself as David P. He asked me if I would consider a world view that actively disagreed with my current theistic Christian world view. Since David had already identified his own world view as naturalism, I told him that if he could prove to me “that naturalism was true, I would.”

    He replied, “If that is your condition, you are essentially saying “no”, because naturalism cannot be proven.”

    I responded by asking him, “So, on what basis are you warranted in believing in it?”
    That question prompted the following dialogue:

    David wrote: “Believing that naturalism cannot be proven? Because we can only perceive a tiny part of the entire system. We may one day be able to formulate naturalistic theories that explain beautifully all that we perceive, but we cannot prove that that is all there is.”

    I asked: “So then, you accept naturalism by faith… Correct?”

    David replied: “I accept naturalism as a working assumption because of the evidence that it helps drive us to understand reality in a way that allows us to make increasingly better predictions. Also, the evidence that so many phenomena attributed to supernatural causes have turned out to have natural causes.”

    Notice how David, in addition to blurring the distinction between science and philosophy, smuggled faith into his world view without calling it that. What I mean is that he is actually acting on the biblical definition of faith and he doesn’t even realize it. Let me prove it to you…

    Hebrews 11:3 says: “By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.”

    Someone committed, like David, to naturalism is actually just modifying the verse so that it reads:

    “By faith we understand that the universe was formed [by some kind of mindless natural process], so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.”

    Harvard professor of psychology Steven Pinker is someone who takes a scientifically based world view just about to its absolute limit. Pinker writes that,

    the findings of science entail that the belief systems of all the world’s traditional religions and cultures—their theories of the origins of life, humans, and societies—are factually mistaken. We know, but our ancestors did not, that humans belong to a single species of African primate that developed agriculture, government, and writing late in its history. We know that our species is a tiny twig of a genealogical tree that embraces all living things and that emerged from prebiotic chemicals almost four billion years ago. We know that we live on a planet that revolves around one of a hundred billion stars in our galaxy, which is one of a hundred billion galaxies in a 13.8-billion-year-old universe, possibly one of a vast number of universes. We know that our intuitions about space, time, matter, and causation are incommensurable with the nature of reality on scales that are very large and very small. We know that the laws governing the physical world (including accidents, disease, and other misfortunes) have no goals that pertain to human well-being. There is no such thing as fate, providence, karma, spells, curses, augury, divine retribution, or answered prayers—though the discrepancy between the laws of probability and the workings of cognition may explain why people believe there are. And we know that we did not always know these things, that the beloved convictions of every time and culture may be decisively falsified, doubtless including some we hold today.

    In other words, the worldview that guides the moral and spiritual values of an educated person today is the worldview given to us by science.

    http://www.newrepublic.com/art.....humanities

    It appears to me that Pinker does not draw and distinction between philosophical naturalism and so-called methodological naturalism. Again notice what he says, the worldview that guides the moral and spiritual values of an educated person today is the worldview given to us by science.

    The philosophical naturalist has deluded himself into thinking he has a trump card which bolsters his hand… science. The problem is that there are no trump cards in the high stakes world view ontological game. This is because in order to even begin to play the game you must establish the ground of being. You must begin by asking some basic questions. For example, you must ask, why does anything at all exist? Or, what is the nature of existence? How do we know? How can we be sure of what we know? Can we really know the truth about anything? However these are metaphysical questions, not questions that can be answered by science itself.

    Einstein said that scientists are poor philosophers. That perhaps explains why there are a number of scientists, like Pinker, who believe that science can actually serve as a basis for a world view that can answer some of our biggest questions—at least those that are worthwhile. The late American astronomer Carl Sagan, for example, proclaimed that “the Cosmos is all that there is or ever was or ever will be.” (Again notice that this is an a priori claim that is itself not scientifically provable.) And, Nobel Prize winner Steven Weinberg opines that while “the worldview of science is rather chilling,” nevertheless there is, he goes on to say, “a grim satisfaction, in facing up to our condition without despair and without wishful thinking–with good humor… without God.”

  72. 72
    asauber says:

    In addition to:

    Naturalists/Materialists/Atheists present an illogical position, if you can get them to disclose what they actually think.

    There’s:

    The thing that they allege allows them to come to the illogical position is SCIENCE. But amazingly, they produce a lot of heat and zero light in illuminating any kind of scientific demonstration of their beliefs.

    Andrew

  73. 73
    vividbleau says:

    “Naturalists/Materialists/Atheists present an illogical position, if you can get them to disclose what they actually think“

    We have had materialist that actually deny logic as a way of demonstrating things that must be false. They deny the primacy of mind and logic.Logic cannot tell us what is true but in can tell us what must be false.

    Vivid

  74. 74
    Ed George says:

    VB

    We have had materialist that actually deny logic as a way of demonstrating things that must be false. They deny the primacy of mind and logic.Logic cannot tell us what is true but in can tell us what must be false.

    VB, I agree with the latter, but that only works when the premises of the logical argument are “True”. And that is not always as easy as it seems. For example, many of KF’s arguments assume specific self-evident truths. Self-evident truths that are not demonstrably true.

  75. 75
    vividbleau says:

    E.G.
    Don’t we all in the end have to make certain unprovable assumptions such as the laws of logic?

    Vivid

  76. 76
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    Self-evident truths that are not demonstrably true.

    Not to the willfully ignorant, anyway.

  77. 77
    vividbleau says:

    E.G.
    “We have had materialist that actually deny logic as a way of demonstrating things that must be false. They deny the primacy of mind and logic”

    It surprises me that you don’t agree with this as well since it has been demonstrated by materialistic posters in the past?
    Vivid

  78. 78
    Ed George says:

    VB

    Don’t we all in the end have to make certain unprovable assumptions such as the laws of logic?

    I think the laws of logic are provable. A+B=C as an example. When we extend logic beyond the pure mathematical, yes, it gets messy. But that is my point. KF has repeatedly presented logical arguments that he thinks are unassailable. But they rely on premises that are anything but certain.

  79. 79

    .
    Quite a sight. The man who very clearly avoids both physical evidence and documented history gives instructions in logic.

  80. 80
    Ed George says:

    UBP

    Quite a sight. The man who very clearly avoids physical evidence and documented history gives instructions in logic.

    I’m not the one defending objective moral values when all of human history (and I mean ALL OF IT) suggests otherwise.

  81. 81

    .
    Oh look, he responds as long as he doesn’t have to engage documented physical evidence or recorded history.

    And he responds by assuming his conclusion. Quite a sight.

  82. 82
    vividbleau says:

    EG
    “I think the laws of logic are provable. A+B=C as an example.”

    Ok prove it.

    “ When we extend logic beyond the pure mathematical, yes, it gets messy.”

    But math is form of symbolic logic.

    Vivid

  83. 83
    Reapers Plague says:

    ET

    Not to the willfully ignorant, anyway.

    You were never a popular kid at school, were you? Are you capable of disagreeing with anyone without turning it into an insult? You do realize that this behavior is a defense mechanism for those who can’t present a cogent argument? No, of course you don’t.

    Why any site would allow your behavior, and presumably condone it, is beyond me. They have to realize that it makes them a laughing stock.

  84. 84
    mike1962 says:

    It never ceases to astound me that seemingly intelligent people (and I count Sev among such), can’t seem to grasp the glaringly obvious end of the logic. If our beliefs are the product of blind material forces, we can NEVER know whether we believe them because they are actually true or because those blind material forces caused us to believe them even though they are false.

    C.S. Lewis wrote a tidy little book about this subject called Miracles

    Materialists usually end up defending their views with some form of induction argument. Which is nothing but dog logic. Useful, until it isn’t, but not “true.” So the materialist is utimately left with defending their own rational powers with those selfsame rational powers, as if the thing doing the defending isn’t the thing under suspicion. My 26 year old son humorously calls this a “self-referential circle jerk.”

  85. 85
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    I’m not the one defending objective moral values when all of human history (and I mean ALL OF IT) suggests otherwise.

    Unfortunately for you that statement cannot be supported.

  86. 86
    Ed George says:

    VB

    Ok prove it.

    2+2=4.

    But math is form of symbolic logic.

    Yes. But math is one of the few fields of study where we actually talk about “proofs”. Extending this from mathematical “proofs” to philosophical “proofs” is complicated, to say the least.

  87. 87
    vividbleau says:

    E.G.
    “2+2=4”
    Prove it

    Vivid

  88. 88
    Ed George says:

    ET

    Unfortunately for you that statement cannot be supported.

    Your argument is with all of recorded history, not me.

  89. 89
    ET says:

    Reapers Blahblah:

    Are you capable of disagreeing with anyone without turning it into an insult?

    Ed George is not just anyone. Ed George has lied. Ed George has quote-mined. And All Ed can do is respond like a child.

    You do realize that this behavior is a defense mechanism for those who can’t present a cogent argument?

    Context, Reaper. You have to consider the trash that I am responding to. Or perhaps you can’t because you have a bias issue.

    Why any site would allow your behavior, and presumably condone it, is beyond me.

    They understand the trash that I am responding to. YOU, on the other hand, seem to have an issue presenting a cogent argument. You don’t seem to have the ability to follow along.

    They have to realize that it makes them a laughing stock.

    Coming from a laughing stock, who has yet to add anything beyond its clueless commentary, I am sure that no one cares what you have to say.

  90. 90
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    Your argument is with all of recorded history, not me.

    YOU made the unsupportable claim.

  91. 91

    .
    I think Vivid captured Ed’s logic with his/her usual clarity:

    Here is the duck duck guy’s argument in a nutshell.
    People and cultures disagree about morality therefore no objective moral standard exists. Compelling isn’t it?

    EDIT: By the way Ed, in order to be truly certain, she needs the consensus of others, doesn’t she?

  92. 92
    Reapers Plague says:

    ET

    Ed George is not just anyone. Ed George has lied. Ed George has quote-mined. And All Ed can do is respond like a child.

    Sorry, but he is not the one looking like a child.

    Context, Reaper. You have to consider the trash that I am responding to. Or perhaps you can’t because you have a bias issue.

    No I don’t. Nobody else here responds in the childish way that you do. That reflects more on you than EG, Hazel and others. And not in a positive way. But you already know this.

    They understand the trash that I am responding to. YOU, on the other hand, seem to have an issue present a cogent argument. You don’t seem to have the ability to follow along.

    Why do you find it necessary to respond in an insulting way to everyone who disagrees with you? Even the people from the ID side notice this. The only conclusion I can draw is that they view you as the crazy, intolerant, racist, homophobic uncle who is incapable of filtering his comments.

    Coming from a laughing stock, who has yet to add anything beyond its clueless commentary, I am sure that no one cares what you have to say.

    Perhaps. But I have faith that people here see you for what you are. The fact that very few stick up for you suggests that I am correct.

  93. 93
    ET says:

    Reapers, you are sorry. You are nothing but a biased loser who couldn’t form a cogent argument if your life depended on it.

    Yes, Ed comes off as a child. You do, too.

    Ed lies and quote-mines. There isn’t anything more childish than that. Clearly you have issues and are not a voice of reason.

    Why do you find it necessary to respond in an insulting way to everyone who disagrees with you?

    I don’t. Clearly you are a liar and a sociopath

    The only conclusion I can draw is that they view you as the crazy, intolerant, racist, homophobic…

    I would expect that from a demented loser such as yourself.

  94. 94
    bornagain77 says:

    As to:

    Vividbleau @87
    E.G.
    “2+2=4”
    Prove it
    Vivid

    To wit: Per extensive analysis of Godel’s incompleteness theorem, “anti-theistic philosophy of mathematics is condemned to oscillate, much as we have done in our argument, between the poles of a priori knowledge and a posteriori knowledge. Why? It will not acknowledge the true God, wise Creator of both the human mind with its mathematical intuition and the external world with its mathematical properties. In sections 22-23 we shall see how the Biblical view furnishes us with a real solution to the problem of “knowing” that 2 + 2 = 4 and knowing that S is true.

    A BIBLICAL VIEW OF MATHEMATICS
    Vern Poythress – Doctorate in theology, PhD in Mathematics (Harvard)
    15. Implications of Gödel’s proof
    B. Metaphysical problems of anti-theistic mathematics: unity and plurality
    Excerpt: Because of the above difficulties, anti-theistic philosophy of mathematics is condemned to oscillate, much as we have done in our argument, between the poles of a priori knowledge and a posteriori knowledge. Why? It will not acknowledge the true God, wise Creator of both the human mind with its mathematical intuition and the external world with its mathematical properties. In sections 22-23 we shall see how the Biblical view furnishes us with a real solution to the problem of “knowing” that 2 + 2 = 4 and knowing that S is true.
    http://www.frame-poythress.org.....thematics/

    i.e. Without God, Atheists can’t even prove that 2+2=4. 🙂

    Of related interest, Godel’s incompleteness theorem was born out of the fact that mathematicians could not even ‘prove’ that 1+1=2. You can pick up some of the details of that episode in math history at 10:00 minute mark of the following video

    BBC-Dangerous Knowledge – Part 3 of 5
    https://www.dailymotion.com/video/xdoj7y

    Supplemental note:

    Taking God Out of the Equation – Biblical Worldview – by Ron Tagliapietra – January 1, 2012
    Excerpt: Kurt Gödel (1906–1978) proved that no logical systems (if they include the counting numbers) can have all three of the following properties.
    1. Validity … all conclusions are reached by valid reasoning.
    2. Consistency … no conclusions contradict any other conclusions.
    3. Completeness … all statements made in the system are either true or false.
    The details filled a book, but the basic concept was simple and elegant. He (Godel) summed it up this way: “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.” For this reason, his proof is also called the Incompleteness Theorem.
    Kurt Gödel had dropped a bomb on the foundations of mathematics. Math could not play the role of God as infinite and autonomous. It was shocking, though, that logic could prove that mathematics could not be its own ultimate foundation.
    Christians should not have been surprised. The first two conditions are true about math: it is valid and consistent. But only God fulfills the third condition. Only He is complete and therefore self-dependent (autonomous). God alone is “all in all” (1 Corinthians 15:28), “the beginning and the end” (Revelation 22:13). God is the ultimate authority (Hebrews 6:13), and in Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Colossians 2:3).
    http://www.answersingenesis.or...../equation#

  95. 95
    ET says:

    crazy, intolerant, racist, homophobic uncle

    Crazy like a fox. Intolerant of liars, bluffers, equivocators and quote-mining cowards. Racist? Only if “pathological liar” or “evoTARD” is a race. Homophobic? Only a total and desperate loser would equate my saying that marriage is between a man and a women with being a homophobe.

  96. 96
    john_a_designer says:

    Why are we wasting time on people who are epistemological subjectivists like Ed George? His belief is that all he or anyone else has are opinions. You want proof? Here’s a debate we had with Mr. George about a year ago when we were debating whether math was something that had been discovered or had been invented with him and others.

    Pater Kimbridge started the dispute @ #4 when he argued:

    One must be careful not to slide into a pit of equivocation here. The universe has structure and quantity, but numbers are an invention of Man. In fact, all of mathematics is an invention of Man.

    It bothers me when people refer to the “mathematical universe”. There is no math in the universe. To believe that there is, is a mind-projection fallacy.

    EG concurred with him @ #11: For what it’s worth, I have to side with PK on this.

    https://uncommondescent.com/mathematics/logic-first-principles-4-the-logic-of-being-causality-and-science/#comment-669565

    To which ET responded @ #12: For what it is worth- I would love to see PK or anyone who sides with PK actually make their case.

    KF concurred @ # 13: EG, make your case: _______

    EG @ #17 replied: It is my opinion that mathematics is a human invention that can be used to model the world that we see around us. For example e = mc^2 means absolutely nothing without first defining energy, mass and the speed of light.

    I then tried to clarify what EG was asserting @ #19:

    So what is EG’s argument?

    Either X or Y could be true

    EG believes Y

    Therefore, Y is true.

    In other words, Ed George believes it. That settles it.

    https://uncommondescent.com/mathematics/logic-first-principles-4-the-logic-of-being-causality-and-science/#comment-669574

    EG then responded:

    That is all any of us can do. Mathematics either exists independent of humans or it is something invented by humans to model our observations. My opinion is that it is the latter. ET and KF believe it is the former. But, unfortunately, there is no way of determining which is true. And, frankly, does it matter?

    https://uncommondescent.com/mathematics/logic-first-principles-4-the-logic-of-being-causality-and-science/#comment-669576

    So if it doesn’t matter, why persist? Does doubling down on one’s subjective opinion make it any truer?

  97. 97
    asauber says:

    “Why are we wasting time on people who are epistemological subjectivists like Ed George?”

    JAD,

    And why is a epistemological subjectivist like Ed George here? What is he trying to accomplish?

    Andrew

  98. 98
    john_a_designer says:

    Andrew,

    And why is a epistemological subjectivist like Ed George here? What is he trying to accomplish?

    Who knows? Typically our interlocutors don’t tell us why they are here. I doubt very much that it’s because they have any interest or curiosity about ID. All I was trying to point out with my post is that they don’t have any arguments which refutes any of the arguments we have raised over the past few years. I think all of us on the ID side are interested in pursuing the Truth about life, the universe and the meaning of our own existence. Are they? It appears not. As Ed asked, “And, frankly, does it matter?” If that’s his attitude, why is he here wasting everyone’s time?

  99. 99
    kairosfocus says:

    A thought: If one cannot see the obvious, is one blind or blindfolded? (Perhaps, ideologically and/or morally so . . . and yes, I am again pointing to inescapable and thus self-evident first duties of reason.) KF

    PS: This is not a new thought, observe these 2000 year old classic references:

    Matt 6:22 “The eye is the lamp of the body; so if your eye is clear [spiritually perceptive], your whole body will be full of light [benefiting from God’s precepts]. 23 But if your eye is bad [spiritually blind], your whole body will be full of darkness [devoid of God’s precepts]. So if the [very] light inside you [your inner self, your heart, your conscience] is darkness, how great and terrible is that darkness!

    Eph 4:17 So this I say, and solemnly affirm together with the Lord [as in His presence], that you must no longer live as the [unbelieving] Gentiles live, in the futility of their minds [and in the foolishness and emptiness of their souls], 18 for their [moral] understanding is darkened and their reasoning is clouded; [they are] alienated and self-banished from the life of God [with no share in it; this is] because of the [willful] ignorance and spiritual blindness that is [deep-seated] within them, because of the hardness and insensitivity of their heart. 19 And they, [the ungodly in their spiritual apathy], having become callous and unfeeling, have given themselves over [as prey] to unbridled sensuality, eagerly craving the practice of every kind of impurity [that their desires may demand]. 20 But you did not learn Christ in this way! 21 If in fact you have [really] heard Him and have been taught by Him, just as truth is in Jesus [revealed in His life and personified in Him], 22 that, regarding your previous way of life, you put off your old self [completely discard your former nature], which is being corrupted through deceitful desires, 23 and be continually renewed in the spirit of your mind [having a fresh, untarnished mental and spiritual attitude], 24 and put on the new self [the regenerated and renewed nature], created in God’s image, [godlike] in the righteousness and holiness of the truth [living in a way that expresses to God your gratitude for your salvation]. [Both, AMP]

  100. 100
    kairosfocus says:

    JAD (& attn EG et al):

    It is interesting to see how a nuanced point is so readily reduced to a strawman caricature. Here, as regards something so readily shown as core issues in Mathematics.

    What I have actually argued is that certain core aspects of Mathematics are necessary entities deriving from the mere distinct identity of any given possible world W distinguishable from a near neighbour W’ by some distinct attribute A. So, W may be structurally partitioned W = {A|~A}. We here see framework quantities that are present, by inspection. A is a unity, and ~A a complex unity. Taking the two together, we find a duality. The dichotomising partition | is empty, thus expressing a nullity. Thus 0-ness, 1-ness [simple and complex], 2-ness are necessary correlates of the possibility of a distinct world. From this the von Neumann construction lays out N, and on that, structuring relationships take us to Z, Q, R, C. Thus, we do not invent these structures and quantities but discover them, C being understood on the vector-rotation view.

    Similarly, there are many world-embedded, discoverable Math facts that constrain construction of axiomatised logic model worlds, ranging from 2 + 3 = 5 to the 3-4-5 triangle relation to the difference between cutting a Mobius strip around in the centre vs 1/3 of the way in from an edge, to how superposed rotating vectors with frequency & phase patterns construct wave patterns, etc etc etc, showing a world of discoverable, embedded Mathematical facts. Such are patent.

    Now let us see EG as cited:

    That is all any of us can do. Mathematics either exists independent of humans or it is something invented by humans to model our observations. My opinion is that it is the latter. ET and KF believe it is the former. But, unfortunately, there is no way of determining which is true. And, frankly, does it matter?

    Notice, the gap between the implied all of math being discovered and there being a world-framework embedded core of structure and quantity? Or, that there are indisputably many discoverable facts, including the one I highlighted on the contrast of cutting a Mobius strip around in centre vs 1/3 way in from the edge . . . yielding dramatically different results . . . thus demonstrating a discoverable core?

    If this is the case with Mathematics, what are we to say when we come to the design inference? Especially when much the same circles of perpetual objectors in the penumbra of attack sites are riddled with denial of inescapable, self-evident first principles and duties of reason? Indeed, we see such implying the said duties and principles in attempts to deny, dismiss or cast doubts.

    The conclusion is that the rationalism of evolutionary materialistic scientism has run its course and has reduced itself to outright irrationality. As was warned.

    We may freely stand on reason and Mathematics, and we may simply declare intellectual independence, standing on what is manifest. The design inference is well warranted empirically and is amply supported by blind search challenge in large config spaces beyond 500 – 1,000 bits worth of possibilities.

    The objector campaign has failed on the merits, and has been exposed as riddled with irrationality.

    KF

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