BEEP! BEEP! IT'S ME.

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Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked."Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat."I don't know," Alice answered."Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."

"So long as I get somewhere," Alice added as an explanation. "Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."

"All right," said the Cat; and this time it vanished quite slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending with the grin, which remained some time after the rest of it had gone. "Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!"

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Saturday, September 30, 2006

Intelligent Designer


Argument: ~ If an intelligent designer exists, it cannot be an omniscient god.
~*~
  • 1. What is an intelligent designer?
  • 2. An intelligent designer designs things.
  • 3. An intelligent designer exhibits intelligence.
  • 4. What is intelligence?
  • 5. Intelligence is the capacity to learn.
  • 6. An omnicient god is a god which knows everything.
  • 7. Therefore, an omniscient god doesn't need to learn anything.
  • 8. Therefore an omniscient god cannot be an intelligent designer.
  • 9. A god which was not all-knowing would be less than perfect.
  • 10. Therefore, only a less than perfect god could be an intelligent designer.


    Same argument expressed slightly differently:
  • 1. Definition: X is intelligent means X has the capacity to learn.
  • 2. For any X, X has the capacity to learn LOGICALLY IMPLIES that there is something which X doesn't know.
  • 3. If God exists then God is omniscient (knows all that there is to know).
  • 4. Thus by 3 & 2, God doesn't have the capacity to learn.
  • 5. Thus by 4 & 1, God is not intelligent.
  • 6. Every intelligent designer is intelligent.
  • 7. Therefore by 5 & 6, God is not an intelligent designer.

(With thanks to Polaterality)

LINKS:

If complex organisms demand an explanation, so does a complex designer.

By calling god an "intelligent designer" (one who has the capacity to learn, reason and understand); one downgrades an omniscient god, (one who knows everything already), to one who "knows a lot." - beepbeepitsme



Link

49 Comments:

Blogger Parge said...

Of course, if you change the premise that intelligence is a "manifestation of a high mental capacity" it throws a wrench into the whole arguement.

One could argue that god is not intelligent, but a bit of a screw up. I mean, look at humans. ;)

30/9/06 5:12 am  
Blogger Kingdom Advancer said...

Definition of intelligent:
Having intelligence; Having a high degree of intelligence.

Definition of intelligence: The capacity to acquire AND APPLY knowledge; SUPERIOR MENTAL CAPACITY.

Definition of omniscient: knowing everything; Having infinite awareness, understanding, and insight; Possessed of universal or complete knowledge.


God, as omniscient, does not need to acquire knowledge. He COULD (as in, He has the capacity)--but He has no need and will never have the need , for He is the source of all knowledge. There's no knowledge for Him to gain. He does, however, apply His knowledge. And He does have infinitely superior mental powers, and an unapproachably high degree of intelligence(knowledge).

The Bible neither uses the term "Intelligent Designer" nor "Omniscient." They both are clearly implied. Henceforth, however, you cannot use just any piece of the English definition of intelligence to make a case. That is intellectually insufficient and dishonest.

One last note: an "intelligent designer" does design things. But you, my fellow bloggers, cannot even comprehend how the term "intelligent designer" applies to God. He designed from nothing. ("In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was formless and void. And darkness was over the face of the deep."--Genesis 1:1-2) No one besides He can do that.

30/9/06 5:41 am  
Blogger Nate said...

What the heck- I wrote this for someone else, but it deals with "proving" God exists (of course, the dubiousness of proving anything is well documented by both quantum indeterminacy and deconstruction in philosophy). But,what the heck, here is another way of looking at the "meta-question" of God and meaning in the Universe:

Which Story fulfills our stories?
"The Beatles" once wrote a song which said "All we need is love. All we need is love. All we need is love, love. Love is all we need." Poets laud it. Artists paint it. Musicians write endless songs about it. Practically every plot for every story revolves around it: love found, love lost, love defended, love despised, love against all odds. Love for children, for family, for country, for lovers. People will face the greatest challenges, worst defeats, and deepest sacrifices for Love. Yet, infants will quit eating and shrivel and die without it. "I Love You" may be the most powerful sentence ever uttered.
Humans yearn to give themselves totally to another and be completely known, cared for, and valued in return. But the question is: Why are humans hard wired for love? What underlying Plot best explains the human obsession with, and need for, love? Several Stories attempt to explain this.
"The Story of Everything from Nothing" tells us there is no God, no Creator, and no underlying purpose behind the Universe. We are here from a complex, yet random interaction of physical forces that drive us to exist at greater and greater levels of complexity and adaptation, until everything finally implodes into nothingness at the end of the universe. The purpose of existence is to continue to exist as long, as powerfully, and as skillfully as possible. And then cease to exist. That's it.
But is love merely a bonding force to unify us into families so that we breed and exist longer? It could be, but there's a problem. If efficiency, skill, and power are the reason for existence, then love makes people do things that are frankly stupid. People care for those who are maladapted to exist- the poor, needy, and handicapped- for love's sake. People sacrifice power- upward mobility, promotions, and wealth - for love's sake. People even sacrifice their own lives for love. Love does not put food on the table, or money in the bank account, or make our lives simpler or more efficient. If the universe's purpose is to evolve and exist, then love as we know it is not a positive adaptation. It is a negative liability that makes us maladapted in most circumstances.
And not only that, but what people does society applaud? Those who are examples of self-interested power, or those who are examples of self-giving love? Love wins. Not only that, but why worry about beauty or make things pleasant if we could just make them functional? Why do certain sounds please us as music? Why are we self-conscious and worry about plots and stories? Why not just operate on instinct without worrying about such things as guilt, worry, sarcasm, or even happiness? Why are we hard wired to ask why? All of these things are simply liabilities if we have no "purpose" but to exist and evolve, and a universe without God cannot plausibly account for them.
"The Story of the Life Force" says there is an impersonal energy or power that animates all matter and gives life to the universe. We are all part of this force, and if we look deep enough into ourselves, we will find that we are one with It. And if we keep realizing this unity, our "self" will dissolve into the everything that is in all, and we will become one with the Force. This unifying Force can be called "love" since it does one of the things that love does: it unifies. But, while this provides a better explanation for the human need for love, it is not complete for one reason: love happens between persons. An impersonal thing- a rock, a television, or even a computer- cannot feel love, choose love, experience love, or yearn for love. Only a person, not a "Force", can account for why we are made as conscious persons who deeply need loving relationships.
"The Story of the Dueling Gods" says there are a number of competing personal gods in a spiritual world that account for our natural world. Some of these gods love, some hate, some destroy, and some create. But, this does not make sense of the supremacy of love in human experience. If it is true that love, hate, creation, and destruction are all equal "gods" with equal value, then why are they not all valued equally? Why do we not celebrate hate and destruction like we do love and creation? If love is universally valued and needed more than any of the other values, then there must be a superior personal "god" that rules the other "gods" to account for it.
"The Story of the Impotent God" is the drama of a God who creates us all to love, but then everything gets out of hand. There are too many creatures to share love with. The creatures are also too stubborn, selfish, and powerful for God to control. God really wants to love everyone, but evil overcomes God and God just can’t do it. God feels for us and weeps for us, but in the end is just too impotent to do much about it. God might be a nice person who we really like, but it is evil who we ultimately have to bow to. A God who loves, but who does not have the power to make love work, simply cannot account for the hope and love that humans yearn for.
"The Story of the Absentee God" says there is a personal God who created everything, but after creating, this God just let everything run on without any further intervention. It's kind of like a Cosmic Science Project (and we are the project!). God is big and great and all-wise and all-powerful, but completely uninvolved. God is the ultimate neglectful Parent who "hard-wired" us to love as part of his science project. God is thus a hypocrite who wants us to share ourselves with others, when God refuses to share Godself.
Also, if love is merely a command or a law, it is not love (at least not the love that humans yearn for). We yearn for a love that transcends all other loves, that will never leave us or forsake us, that will give meaning to life and conquer death. Many, never finding this love, give up on it altogether or settle for lesser loves, never fulfilled. But, beneath all our longings we are ultimately yearning for God to share God's very self with us in love.
But, if God is uninvolved- an absentee Parent- this can never happen. Furthermore, if love is simply something God commands, and not something that God is, then love has no secure basis. God could have just as easily programmed the world to revolve around hate or greed. If God is not love, then love cannot be absolute. Yet, love feels like an absolute. Look at drama, literature, poetry, music, and art. Look at yourself. The only satisfying Story is that love comes from a God who is Love.
Only "The Story of the Relational God" brings us to the strange, surprising, yet satisfying fulfillment of humanity's hopes, dreams, loves, and yearnings. It is the Story of a God who is Love, who makes us to love, and who gives us the freedom to love. It is the Story of a God who allows his beloved to reject him, but who never gives up reaching out to bring his beloved back to himself. It is the Story of a love that will not die, but which powerfully works throughout time and space until every creature is brought to fulfillment and joy in his love.

At least, that's some of my thoughts on it.

Be blessed...

30/9/06 6:09 am  
Blogger Procrastinatrix said...

Never thought of it that way. Good points. You always give me ammunition for my arsenal...thanks!

Rose

30/9/06 6:16 am  
Blogger Austin said...

Using your definition of intelligent, a person who knows absolutely nothing would be the most intelligent person possible because he/she would have the greatest capacity to learn. A person who knows everything would then be the least intelligent person possible, having no capacity to learn.

Obviously this is backwards. Who is more intelligent - someone who knows his/her abc's but cannot read, or someone who can read in seven languages? Think about it.

30/9/06 8:22 am  
Blogger Daniel said...

Could I suggest that the chaotic world we live in demonstrates clearly that nothing remotely intelligent or loving could have been involved in its crazy 'design'.

30/9/06 2:32 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE Parge:

"Of course, if you change the premise that intelligence is a "manifestation of a high mental capacity" it throws a wrench into the whole arguement."

Of course it depends on the definition of intelligence. I took mine from dictionary.com where the primary meaning - first cab off the rank, so to speak is >> 1. The capacity to learn.

30/9/06 6:22 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE kingdom advancer:

Anyone can apply knowledge, it takes the capacity to learn, to know whether or not the knowledge is being applied in a meaningful way.

The dictionary definition I used for intelligence comes from dictionary.com where "the capacity to learn" is the primary definition of intelligence.

INTELLIGENCE : ~ capacity for learning, reasoning, understanding, and similar forms of mental activity; aptitude in grasping truths, relationships, facts, meanings, etc.

If a being supposedly is all-knowing or omniscient, it cannot demonstrate the capacity to learn and therefore it is incapable of displaying one of the primary behaviours associated with intelligence.

If something is all knowing, it isn't intelligent, it is omniscient. Humans are intelligent, omniscient beings are omniscient.

30/9/06 6:32 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE nate:

"The Story of Everything from Nothing" tells us there is no God, no Creator, and no underlying purpose behind the Universe."

What story of "everything from nothing." No atheist that I know makes such a claim and I certainly don't make the claim. Rather it appears to me that theists claim that their god came from nothing.

30/9/06 6:35 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE rose:

No worries :)

RE austin:
"Using your definition of intelligent, a person who knows absolutely nothing would be the most intelligent person possible because he/she would have the greatest capacity to learn."

Don't confuse knowledge with intelligence.

INTELLIGENCE 1. capacity for learning, reasoning, understanding, and similar forms of mental activity; aptitude in grasping truths, relationships, facts, meanings, etc.

KNOWLEDGE 1. acquaintance with facts, truths, or principles, as from study or investigation; general erudition: knowledge of many things.

Someone can accumulate a lot of facts and information, (knowledge), but it takes intelligence to apply it.

Intelligence is what we DO with all that knowledge. For example: I can recite many passages from Shakespeare. But it takes higher order intelligence to use the tradegies of shakespeare to formulate a model which explains operant conditioning.

It is the abilty to compare and contrast sometimes disparate and discrete information and come up with something entirely unforseen which constitutes new areas of knowledge that best describes intelligence.

Because intelligence in this sense is exhibiting its capacity to learn.

30/9/06 6:55 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE daniel: Of course you can :)

30/9/06 6:56 pm  
Blogger Mike Pitzler said...

tradegy. tragedy. mmm. tragedy. ok. just got up for a glass of milk. Board Housewife, my friend, asked me to post a link to her blog.

Ecclesiastes 3:14-15 I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor anything taken from it; and God hath done it, that men should fear before him. 15 That which is hath been long ago; and that which is to be hath long ago been: and God seeketh again that which is passed away.

30/9/06 7:07 pm  
Blogger Daniel said...

I think that quote from the Bible by Mike really clears everything up! Wot?

30/9/06 8:52 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE mike:

"Splendid you rise in heaven's lightland,
O living Aten, creator of life!
When you have dawned in eastern lightland,
You fill every land with your beauty.
You are beauteous, great, radiant,
High over every land;
Your rays embrace the lands,
To the limit of all that you made.
Being Re, you reach their limits,
You bend them for the son whom you love;
Though you are far, your rays are on earth,
Though one sees you, your strides are unseen." (From The Great Hymn to Aten)

Passes the collection plate.

30/9/06 9:45 pm  
Blogger a rose is a rose said...

how can i NOT love this blog? alice? pigs flying? your name, beepbeepitsme?

wicked cool all around

30/9/06 10:42 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

By calling god an "intelligent designer" (one who has the capacity to learn, reason and understand; one downgrades an omniscient god, (one who knows everything already), to one who "knows a lot."

1/10/06 2:31 am  
Blogger Kingdom Advancer said...

You just don't get it, do you beepbeep?
God as an "Intelligent Designer" does not imply that God doesn't know everything, but that HE DOES KNOW THINGS. This is as opposed to your theory: MINDLESS evolution. The Intelligent Design movement demonstrates clearly the implausibility of random chance to create such a complex universe.

Intelligent design means that somebody was behind it--somebody knew what He was doing. Every INTELLIGENT human being admits that your 'god'--the theory of Evolution--is both inconceivable and improbable. (With the odds being about 1 in a million trillion, or worse.)

And, as I've already said, "intelligent designer" is not in the Bible, and it certainly doesn't come from the original Greek or Hebrew. Therefore, you have to take the definition FROM THE INTELLIGENT DESIGN MOVEMENT. Not "the first definition I found on so-and-so.com."

"Could I suggest that the chaotic world we live in demonstrates clearly that nothing remotely intelligent or loving could have been involved in its crazy 'design'." --Daniel

You seem serious, and yet I want to laugh. If you are serious, I pity you. If you are capable of saying this with a clean conscience, then you must not have thought about it before you typed it. You say that an intelligent being couldn't have created such a crazy world. But what you don't realize is that it is not God's fault that mankind has turned its back on Him and messed up the whole universe. God is responsible, however, for designing things like the human eye. Maybe you should go to the library and read a book about the human eye--just for starters.

"Intelligence is what we DO with that knowledge."--Beepbeep

So, how about this? God holds all knowledge. He applied that knowledge to create the entire universe. All your knowledge and intelligence can't create ANYTHING in the format that God created it.

Beepbeep, Austin is right on track, in spite of what you think. Your "capacity to learn" implies that the more you learn, the less you have a capacity to learn, and therefore the less intelligent you are. By your impartial definition, you could say that a newborn baby is "more intelligent" than any adult to ever have lived, because that baby has such a high "capacity to learn," from learning how to say "dadda" to how to split an atom.
In fact, however, today's usage of the word is almost synonymous with the possession of knowledge and a high mental ability. God, as an "intelligent designer," simply possesses all knowledge and has the highest of mental abilities.

Oh, by the way, "everything from nothing" is called EVOLUTION. Maybe you've heard of it. If you truly think yourself to believe in no God, the only other option is that everything came from nothing--no mixtures and no mixers. And, uh, where did the elements before (causing) and after (resulting) from this supposed Big Bang come from?

1/10/06 8:18 am  
Blogger Kingdom Advancer said...

"...By your impartial definition,..." --Kingdom Advancer.

Apologies: I actually meant to say by your PARTIAL definition.

1/10/06 9:55 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE kingdom advancer:

"You just don't get it, do you beepbeep?
God as an "Intelligent Designer" does not imply that God doesn't know everything, but that HE DOES KNOW THINGS."

You apparently missed the focus of the whole argument which was :

Argument: ~ If an intelligent designer exists, it cannot be an omniscient god.

So, you have just agreed with me, that if intelligent means "to know things", but not everything, then the intelligent designer cannot be an omniscient god.


By calling god an "intelligent designer" (one who has the capacity to learn, reason and understand); one downgrades an omniscient god, (one who knows everything already), to one who "knows a lot."

1/10/06 10:11 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE kingdom advancer: "...By your impartial definition,..." --Kingdom Advancer. Apologies: I actually meant to say by your PARTIAL definition. "

An intelligent designer is one who would display intelligence.

Intelligence is the capacity to learn, reason and understand.

What does the bible say about "intelligence" or "reason"?

From Isaiah20:14 - "Therefore once more I will astound these people with wonder upon wonder; the wisdom of the wise will perish, the intelligence of the intelligent will vanish."

Now of course when I read the bible, as a non-believer, I just see it as the words of men claiming their god can do all sorts of neat stuff, so my understanding of such passages is from that perspective.

Aparently god isn't too keen on wise people, or intelligent people and he is gunna blow them all out of the water with a magic trick or two.

Cool, I will bring the popcorn.

Now, what does the bible say about reason?

Job 12:13 - "To God belong wisdom and power; counsel and undertstanding are his."

Ahhh, so the claim is that god has a monopoly on wisdom, power and understanding. How convenient.

And he doesn't want any competition in this regard because in Job 12: 25-25 "He (god) deprives the leaders of the earth of their reason; he sends them wandering through a trackless waste. They grope in darkness with no light; he makes them stagger like drunkards."

Well, that isn't very nice is it. God deliberately turns leaders into retards because he can't stomach competition?

Naughty, naughty god. Smack smack.

1/10/06 10:42 am  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

This is a response to kingdom advancer. Their text is indented.
>Definition of intelligent:
>Having intelligence; Having a high degree of intelligence.

>Definition of intelligence: The capacity to acquire AND APPLY knowledge; SUPERIOR
>MENTAL CAPACITY.

Well if this dictionary uses 'and' in an inclusive sense then intelligence involves both the capacity to acquire as well as to apply knowledge.If God exists then since God cannot acquire any new knowledge since he already has all knowledge, then God cannot be intelligent in this sense.
The 2nd sense is 'superior mental capacity'.But this is unspecified as to what the mental capacity is for. It cannot be for learning or thinking since the former involves gaining knowledge and hence by the above argument God cannot gain, and cannot be for thinking since if God or,or thus, God's mind exists outside time , and thinking is a process occuring in minds over time, then God cannot think. Also it cannot be thinking that causes God to gain knowledge - again by the first argument.
Suppose however it is capacity for knowledge. There is an ambiguity here in 'mental capacity' since one sense logically implies that there is capacity for something new in God's mind. But if God is immutable or timeless, or his mind is immutable or timeless, there is no capacity for something new in God's mind since this logically implies God or his mind are not immutable, or that God or God's mind changes.Thus if it is capacity for knowledge it could mean 'superior mental capacity' in the sense of God having more knowledge than any other being.
>Definition of omniscient: knowing everything; Having infinite awareness, understanding, and insight; Possessed of universal or
>complete knowledge.
Incidentally, I'm not going to consider different concepts of what 'omniscient' expresses in my response.

>God, as omniscient, does not need to acquire knowledge. He COULD (as in, He has the
>capacity)--but He has no need and will never have the need , for He is the source of all
>knowledge. There's no knowledge for Him to gain.
My argument above concludes that God cannot acquire any knowledge nor think.You yourself admit this when you claim there's no knowledge for him to gain. But then you also contradict the previous sentence when you claim he could.
>He does, however, apply His knowledge.
To apply knowledge surely involves using it to think about something to gain new specific knowledge.But there are 2 arguments concluding God cannot apply knowledge: the arguments above: one concluding that God cannot think, the other that God cannot gain new knowledge.

>He does have infinitely superior mental powers, and an unapproachably high degree of
> intelligence(knowledge).
What do you mean 'infinitely superior'? And what are 'mental powers' except thinking processes -which I have argued above that God cannot have, since all processes occur within time.You have also equivocated intelligence with knowledge, in the 2nd sentence.
>The Bible neither uses the term "Intelligent Designer" nor "Omniscient." They both are clearly
>implied.
Thus I conclude you believe that God is an intelligent designer in the literal sense( i.e. a designer who is intelligent) and is omniscient.
Here is the 2nd argument on beepbeep's blog again:
1. Definition: X is intelligent means X has the capacity to learn.
2. For any X, X has the capacity to learn LOGICALLY IMPLIES that there is something which X doesn't know.
3. If God exists then God is omniscient (knows all that there is to know).
4. Thus by 3 & 2, God doesn't have the capacity to learn.
5. Thus by 4 & 1, God is not intelligent.
6. Every intelligent designer is intelligent.
7. Therefore by 5 & 6, God is not an intelligent designer.

The 1st premiss is logically implied by one sense of your definition of 'intelligent' above namely 'the capacity to learn and apply knowledge'. The 2nd premiss is in fact logically implied by the meaning of 'capacity to learn'.If you use the 2nd sense of your definition of 'intelligent' only, if it is meaningful, and if implies the capacity to gain knowledge i.e. learn,then it implies the 2nd premiss.Either way the 2nd premiss is implied.The only other basic premisses are 3. - which your definition of 'omniscient' logically implies - and 6, asserting that every intelligent designer is intelligent, which is logically implied if 'intelligent designer' means a designer that is intelligent.
Thus the argument should be accepted on your own definitions of 'intelligent' and 'omniscient' if you accept the 2nd sense of your definition of 'intelligent' implies the capacity to gain knowledge, and if you accept premiss 6.
>Henceforth, however, you cannot use just any piece of the English definition of intelligence to >make a case. That is intellectually insufficient and dishonest.

I've already proven the argument in bulett points above has basic premisses which are either logically implied by your own definitions ,if if you accept the 2nd sense of your definition of 'intelligent' implies the capacity to gain knowledge, and if you accept premiss 6( which is taking 'intelligent designer to mean a designer who is intelligent). I think that is intellectually sufficent to prove the conclusion and thus intellectually honest.
>One last note: an "intelligent designer" does design things. But you, my fellow bloggers, cannot
>even comprehend how the term "intelligent designer" applies to God. He designed from
>nothing. ("In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was formless
>and void. And darkness was over the face of the deep."--Genesis 1:1-2)
I'm unsure what 'designed from nothing' means here. It could mean that God didn't use anything except his mind to design anything, or mean that God was not affected by the existence of anything other than himself when he designed. Either way or by any other meaning, to 'design' surely involves thinking - again by the arguments above not something which a timeless or an omniscient being can do.
>No one besides He can do that.
Suppose that God exists.By this I mean the god of so-called classical theism with the usual divine attributes. I dont know how the mere existence of such a being implies that he is unique in being ABLE to 'design from nothing' or even what you wrote implying actually being unique in having in the past 'designed from nothing'.Can you prove this on common ground from defining 'designed from nothing' - or perhaps you are indirectly preaching?
I conclude that it's logically impossible for an omniscient, timeless deity to literally be or have any of the following: intelligence, ability to think,ability to learn, ability to design.
However, suppose that it is proven that everything that the theist proves about their deity from these attributes is provable from other attributes such as omniscience.Then the theist can accept my conclusion without any loss to what they claim to be able to prove about their deity from it's attributes.But of course this has to be proven.
In my experience some people often deceive themselves or are deliberately dishonest about their sematics. In general consider a person, and a text. There are many kinds of semantic self-deception that can occur for e.g:
1.Changing meanings and believing one hasn't.
2. Having interpretation rules of, or meanings for the text that are: not provable on common ground or from one's own beliefs, arbitrarily determined (a theist could claim the source is not arbitrary but religious experience) or flexible enough to interpret the text in any way to avoid contradictions.( Here 'interpreting' will mean simply assigning a meaning to the text.I allow for the possiblity that some of a text can have multiple meanings).
3.The person confusing their meaning of a term with that which he believes is at least one of meanings authors intended meanings of it.
Given this, an example of 1. could be if the theist claims to FIRST have a literal meaning for God as intelligent,able to think, able to learn,or able to design, then accept it's logically impossible and then LATER create a nonliteral meaning for these claiming they had this nonliteral meaning FIRST, and all the time.This could involve them claiming it was always there but hard to express until later. It would be better for them to admit they were mistaken that their deity can have these attributes literally and then abandon using these terms as attributes altogether, or, if these terms can be assigned a nonliteral meaning using a proven semantic relationship of their literal meaning to OTHER divine attributes, then they could now have a different meaning to their literal meaning.
An example of 3 is claiming that the later meaning for the terms was always implied by some meanings of their religious texts. But this could involve 2, and even if not, they must admit their first meaning is not in their text and also leads to contradiction. They can also claim that they always had in mind the meanings implied by their text but of course this is an example of 1 and also of 3: confusing their meaning for the term with what they believe is the text's meaning.
Frankly I have struggled to classify the possible kinds of semantic self-deception but I hope that I've written enough to exemplify them.

1/10/06 11:53 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE pola: I couldn't have said it better, because I didn't :)

1/10/06 2:00 pm  
Blogger Kingdom Advancer said...

So it's same to assume, then, that if I call my Congressman, I can say that I have at least two atheists willing to support teaching "Omniscient Design" in schools? No? That's what I thought. You all are playing with words. You can call God any of the following:
Omniscient Designer
Ultimately Smart Designer
Ingenious to the Maximum Designer
So Intellectual He Knows Everything Designer
Intelligent Designer--meaning that someone Who possesses knowledge--ALL knowledge in God's case--designed the universe, as opposed to someone or something who DOESN'T possess knowledge.

As you've ignored twice, I've been saying that this term is not in the Bible. You used my statement "it's implied" to say that it's basically in the Bible. That's not what I meant. What I meant was just that which I said above.

You refer to God "not having the capacity to acquire knowledge" as if He does not have the power. As if, if somehow new facts entered into existence, God, as omniscient, wouldn't have "the capacity" to learn them. That's not how God does not have the capacity of learning. He does not have the "capacity to learn" because He has no need to. That doesn't make him un-intelligent. That's like saying that a brain surgeon (and expert) is unintelligent because he has no need to study brain surgery books, because "he doesn't have the capacity to learn anything new."

I trust that most people are INTELLIGENT enough to see through your all's "word dancing."

3/10/06 8:44 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: kingdom advancer:

RE: "So it's same to assume, then, that if I call my Congressman, I can say that I have at least two atheists willing to support teaching "Omniscient Design" in schools? No? That's what I thought. You all are playing with words."

No, I don't support the teaching of either: 1. Omnicient design 2. Ultimately smart designer 3. Ingenious to the Maximum Designer 4. So intellectual he knows everything designer. It seems that YOU are the one who wishes to "play with words".

Now, let me qualify it for you, I don't support these god theories being taught in science classes.

Science provides models to explain the natural world. It does not, nor can it, provide models to explain god.

Theology provides models that explain god. If you want theology, or some sort of comparative religion taught in your schools and you want to call this theology, "The So Intellectual He Knows Everything Designer Theory", then you need to lobby for religious education to be taught in your public schools. But not in a science class, in a religious class.

My understanding of this is that it doesn't abide with "the separation of church and state". Though I am sure you have a misguided belief that "god belief" is somehow scientific.

Having said this, private schools can teach that the world was created by The Ultra Flatulent Flying Alien Poop Monster, as long as they manage to get enough people who want to pay to hear the sermons as part of their education.

Also, it is not "playing with words", it is defining the argument, by defining the meaning of words.

3/10/06 1:33 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: kingdom advancer:

RE: "You refer to God "not having the capacity to acquire knowledge" as if He does not have the power. As if, if somehow new facts entered into existence, God, as omniscient, wouldn't have "the capacity" to learn them. That's not how God does not have the capacity of learning. He does not have the "capacity to learn" because He has no need to."

Correct, you canot claim that your god is omniscient AND an intelligent designer because "intelligence" requires as part of its definition the capacity to learn.

There is obviously no need for an omniscient being to learn anything, therefore it is inaccurate to call an omniscient god an intelligent designer.

RE: " That doesn't make him un-intelligent."
I didn't claim that it would make a supposed god unintelligent, just not omniscient.

RE: "That's like saying that a brain surgeon (and expert) is unintelligent because he has no need to study brain surgery books, because "he doesn't have the capacity to learn anything new."

Firstly, are there brain surgeons out there who are incapable of learning? If they are incapable of learning, is it because: -
1. They are omniscient?
2. They claim to be omniscient?
3. Have a motor neurone disease which impairs their ability to learn?
4. Have some other intellectual disorder which would exclude them from being able to process new information?

I wouldn't claim that a brain surgeon who is incapable of learning was unintelligent, just that he wasn't omniscient.

Or perhaps he/she had suffered some intellectual dysfunction or similar incapacity which rendered him/her incapable of being able to process and learn new information.

RE: "I trust that most people are INTELLIGENT enough to see through your all's "word dancing."

I wouldn't "trust" that people, collectively, are intelligent enough to formulate new methods of shoe-tying.

Though, sometimes individuals are able to demonstrate that they understand arguments. You, on the other hand, have been unable to demonstrate this.

3/10/06 1:58 pm  
Blogger Kingdom Advancer said...

First of all, I do not claim that "god-belief" is scientific, but I do believe that explaining the probability of an Intelligent Designer is. "Evolution" is just as un-scientific, if not more. Having a god is not a required element of a religion. Atheists generally fall into the category of "secular humanists." This is a religion. It is a religion that makes man and his ability to reason the "god" of their religion. Evolution is the main way to "explain their origins," as you would say theists--and all other religions--explain their origins. Therefore, if teaching the potential and probability of an Intelligent Designer is not allowed in a classroom, than secular humanists/evolutionists/atheists are themselves trying to establish a religion, the religion of secular atheistic humanism--violating the separation of church and state.

This goes without mentioning the often fraudulent "proof" put forward for Evolution, as well as the fact that it is often taught AS FACT, which is more than un-scientific: it's a malicious and straight-out lie.

Lastly, as an Australian, I would not expect you to understand the meaning of America's separation of church and state, for the vast majority of Americans do not. That wording does not even appear in the Constitution. The Constitution says that the government "shall not establish a religion." This was to assure citizens that the government would not interfere with their freedom of religion--not vice versa. The term "separation of church and state" appeared first in a letter by Thomas Jefferson TO BAPTISTS, assuring them that the government would not establish CONGREGATIONALISM as the state church, like Anglicanism was in England.

Yet, now, in every public arena almost, it seems that secular humanism--or, if not that, than universalism--is established as the state religion. The Intelligent Design Movement is not asking to be the only science taught in schools. It wants to be taught alongside Evolution as an alternate. Why won't evolutionists accept this? Because they want to keep their monopoly on child-brainwashing.

Lastly, since you still won't --and obviously will never-- get my logical explanation of Intelligent Designer, I will say no more on it now.

4/10/06 3:28 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE kingdom advancer:

As I have stated previously, this is not a competition between your god belief and evolution.

Even if you manage in some "miraculous way" to prove that ALL science is wrong, including all modern cosmology, astro-physics and quantum theory, IT DOES NOT MAKE THE CASE FOR YOUR GOD.

Let me say again, so it might permeate the dim, dark recesses of whatever part of your brain is still able to process and understand reason.

I am convinced that you have a major comprehension problem. This, coupled with your inability to understand what is a logical argument, is evidence in itself why you rely on faith.

Even if you can disprove ALL of evolution, it does NOT mean that your god exists. You need to make the case for your god, you do NOT make a case for the existence of a god, by saying modern cosmology is wrong, therefore god exists.

This type of argument is an example of a false dichotomy, or a false dilemma, or the fallacy of the excluded middle, the false correlative or the either/or fallacy.

A false dichotomy involves a situation in which two alternative points of view are held to be the ONLY options, when in reality there exist one or more other options which have not been considered.

You wish to argue that if evolution is wrong, then creationism is right. Let me say it again: THIS IS LOGICALLY UNSOUND.

But, it is at least amusing to me to realize that the very thing that you profess to be able to use to prove the existence of your god, that is, the scientific method, is the very thing that would have had you roasting over a pit in the city square with a red hot poker firming planted up your arse.

As this was just one of the delightful christian punishments for those who espoused heretical scientific theories.

I suggest that you use the scientific method to prove the existence of your god with no reference to evolution or modern cosmology. Go right ahead.

RE: "Yet, now, in every public arena almost, it seems that secular humanism--or, if not that, than universalism--is established as the state religion. The Intelligent Design Movement is not asking to be the only science taught in schools. It wants to be taught alongside Evolution as an alternate. Why won't evolutionists accept this? Because they want to keep their monopoly on child-brainwashing."

Ok, I am now convinced that you have very little understanding of words and the meaning of words. I had my suspicions, but that last paragragh was the clincher.

Firstly, secular humanism is not a religion.

"A religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs."

Secular humanism has a set of beliefs.

It does not have a set of beliefs concerning the cause or purpose of the universe.

It does not believe that a superhuman agency is responsible for the creation of said universe.

It does not have devotional or ritual observances.

It does suggest a moral code without belief in a superhuman agency responsible for creating the universe.

So, secular humanism is not a religion.

Secondly, the "Intelligent Design Movement" is not science. Science investigates and provides models of the natural world. Science NEITHER ASSUME A CREATOR NOR DOES IT DENY ONE.


Intelligent design assumes a designer, and therefore assumes a creator and is consequently NOT science. Intelligent design is creationism masquerading as science. It is pseudo-science.

Thirdly, as ID assumes a designer, it is theology, not science, and would be inappropriate in a science class. You should be lobbying for religious education classes if you want ID taught in public schools.

Religious education has been taught here in australian public schools for over 50 years. It isn't compulsory, but if parents want their children to have some religious training, they organise with the school for several priests, pastors, ministers etc from a variety of religions to come to the school and take up to an hour of religious instruction each week.

I suggest that this is what you do. It has been a raging success here in Australia and has bred a nation of non-believers, atheists, skeptics and agnostics.

So the sooner you start to indoctrinate children into religion in schools, the better I say!

4/10/06 5:06 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

beepbeep
I have two questions for you.

#1 Just for the record, do you believe in evolution?

#2 Do you believe in absolutes?

Daniel

5/10/06 12:18 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So all this debate comes from the validity of the term 'intelligent designer'? So in the end it all comes down to the definition of the English word 'intelligence.' This is as simple as declaring that if beepbeep's definition of the word is correct, than the term is invalid. However, if KA's definition is correct, than we can use it in this sense. The Hebrew name for God in this case is Elohim, which means The All-Powerful One, The Creator. Intelligent design, as some people want to teach it here in the U.S., is the idea that someone or something out there created or made everything. I subscribe to creation, not intelligent design. Evolution is in fact a religion. You have your view of how the world started (a big bang or something along those lines), your view of the purpose of the existence of man (to survive and become greater), and even your own gods (science and yourselves). Creation and evolution are both religious belief systems that interpret science in two far different ways. If you want religion out of schools, than get evolution out of there and let people put the facts together for themselves. Two very good sites for this are www.creationmoments.com and www.answersingenesis.org which you should really check out.
I heard someone on this site (I forget where), mention the phrase ‘separation of church and state,’ and I am sick and tired of it. You can’t turn around without someone saying it here in the States. The phrase originally was a quote, from Tomas Jefferson, in response to some churches who were either being threatened with being taxed, or being taken over. When he said that there would be ‘a wall of separation between church and state,’ he (if you’ll look at the context of his letter) was saying that the federal government would in no way shape or form, interfere with the rights of the churches.

Daniel

5/10/06 1:01 am  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

Kingdom Advancer wrote:
>So it's same to assume, then, that if I call my Congressman, I can say that I have at least two atheists willing to support
>teaching "Omniscient Design" in schools? No? That's what I thought.
I dont know if this is simply in jest or you're actually logically implying that what I or beepbeep wrote logically implies we would support what is called 'Intelligent Design' if it was called something else such as 'Omniscient Design' or other terms similar to the titles you list below.If so then please prove this.However, even if there is evidence for Intelligent Design Theory ( ID),and thus that there is an intelligent designer, then it is not your deity, since your deity cannot literally be intelligent nor even be a designer of anything.
>You all are playing with words. You can call God
>any of the following:
>Omniscient Designer
>Ultimately Smart Designer
>Ingenious to the Maximum Designer
>So Intellectual He Knows Everything Designer
>Intelligent Designer--meaning that someone Who possesses knowledge--ALL knowledge in God's case--designed the
>universe, as opposed to someone or something who DOESN'T possess knowledge.

You claim that we are playing with words and that it doesn't matter what your deity is called or titled. But what your deity is called or its title aren't attributes - although they can express attributes.You can CALL your deity anything you want, and thus give it ANY title you want but my arguments weren't about what you can CALL or TITLE your deity at all, they were about whether your deity can literally have the attributes of being intelligent, able to think,able to learn, and be a designer.So if you believe that titles are attributes then you're confusing the two and hence you are deliberately or otherwise 'playing with words'.
However if your titles above also literally express attributes of your deity, then since your deity is not a designer, it cannot have any of these titles. As for the 6th title, it proves that you didn't mean it to express all it's attributes literally since you use 'Intelligent' in 'Intelligent Designer' to express that your deity has all knowledge rather than expressing anything about intelligence. However you used 'Designer' in it to literally express that your deity is a designer, and I already proved that your deity if timeless and omniscient, cannot be a designer.
>As you've ignored twice, I've been saying that this term is not in the Bible. You used my statement "it's implied" to say
>that it's basically in the Bible. That's not what I meant. What I meant was just that which I said above.

I never said that the term 'intellgent designer is in the Bible. Let me quote you the ENTIRE section of what you said and my response. Your text is indented twice, mine once:
>>The Bible neither uses the term "Intelligent Designer" nor "Omniscient." They both are clearly implied.
>Thus I conclude you believe that God is an intelligent designer in the literal sense( i.e. a designer who is intelligent) and is omniscient.
So it's clear I took what you said to logically imply that , I quote '..you believe that God is an intelligent designer in the literal sense( i.e. a designer who is intelligent) and is omniscient.'. Dont you agree with this? Clearly you do, as I will prove by quoting you again:
>>The Bible neither uses the term "Intelligent Designer" nor "Omniscient." They both are clearly implied.
So you misunderstood or constructed a strawperson claim about what I wrote when you wrote: '...You used my statement "it's implied" to say that it's basically in the Bible.'

>You refer to God "not having the capacity to acquire knowledge" as if He does not have the power. As if, if somehow
>new facts entered into existence, God, as omniscient, wouldn't have "the capacity" to learn them. That's not how God
>does not have the capacity of learning. He does not have the "capacity to learn" because He has no need to.
This is exactly the kind of passage that is evidence to me that you're engaging in semantic self-deception. You change the LITERAL meaning of 'capacity to learn' which is what is in the dictionary THAT YOU QUOTED, and put it in quotes as " capacity to learn" , and thus express it now has a NONLITERAL meaning of 'needing to learn'. But CLEARLY there are here 2 differences between the two:
(1) SEMANTIC DIFFERENCE: Clearly 'capacity' does not mean the same as 'need'
(2) NOT LOGICALLY EQUIVALENT. A being could have the capacity to learn without needing to learn, or have a need to learn without the capacity to learn.
What this proves is that in your mind even if you believe the meaning is the same it isn't, and even if the meaning is similar it still doesn't mean its the SAME, and further it makes a HUGE logical difference.
>That doesn't make him un-intelligent.
My arguments conclusion that God is not intelligent is not meant to be an insulting or a gloat if that's how you're taking it.In fact I was trying to be charitable when I already explained that admitting that God isn't literally: intelligent, able to think or learn, is not a loss if what you wanted to prove from your belief in these attributes is that God is omniscient i.e. has all knowledge.And if you can prove that only God has all knowledge then God would be the most knowledgeable being there is.
>That's like saying that a brain surgeon (and expert) is unintelligent because he has no need to study brain surgery books,
>because "he doesn't have the capacity to learn anything new."

You simply repeat the premiss of my argument, that God doesn't have the capacity to learn, and then deny the conclusion that god is not intelligent without directly evaluating any of my arguments premisses or inferences.Instead you give a misleading analogy as I'll show below:
There is a brain surgeon who knows everything about brain surgery that is in brain surgery books. Therefore he doesn't have the capacity to learn anything new in books about brain surgery. But the brain surgeon is intelligent.
Assume that such a brain surgeon exists.This brain surgeon is intelligent as a brain surgeon not because he knows everything in the books, but because he can APPLY, i.e. THINK ABOUT his book knowledge to specific patients to get to know something about them.Therefore he does have the capacity to learn something new about his patients even if he doesn't have the capacity to learn more book knowledge about brain surgery.
There is a being who knows EVERYTHING. Therefore he doesnt have the capacity to learn anything new about ANYTHING.
This is different since this being already knows everything and hence doesn't have the capacity to learn anything new or apply his knowledge to learn something new.

>I trust that most people are INTELLIGENT enough to see through your all's "word dancing."
I am not the one who: (1) Seems to be confusing, or diverting the discussion from attributes to titles ,(2) is misunderstanding me or contructing a strawperson claim that I said that the Bible uses the term 'intelligent designer' (3) equivocating 'capacity to learn' with 'need to learn' and (4) giving misleading analogies presented as counterarguments.
You might call my evaluation "word dancing" (whatever you mean by that), but it isn't word dancing -Im trying to be careful about semantics.I hope that people reading this can see that.

5/10/06 1:47 am  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

>Kingdom Advancer said...
>First of all, I do not claim that "god-belief" is scientific, but I do believe that explaining the probability of an Intelligent
>Designer is.
ID has been rejected as a scientific theory by the scientific community.
>"Evolution" is just as un-scientific, if not more.
I dont understand how something can have degrees of being unscientific.
>Having a god is not a required element of a religion.
This site http://www.onelook.com/?w=religion&ls=a contains definitions for 'religion' from various dictionaries both specialist and general. Most of the dictionaries defined 'religion' in terms of a deity,supernatural entities,or the cause,nature,origin or purpose of the universe. Then there are much broader sociological or anthropological ones that define it not in terms of any of these, and are listed here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion
http://www.bartleby.com/65/re/religion.html
http://encarta.msn.com/encnet/refpages/RefArticle.aspx?refid=761565187 refers to 'spiritual powers.'
http://www.webref.org/sociology/r/religion.htm defines it to the meaning of life and the nature of the unknown.
Lastly one uses the term 'idealism':
http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~nurelweb/books/concise/WORDS-R.html
The broader sociological or anthropological definitions seem to be identical or nearly identical with what I mean by 'worldview'.
In conclusion it depends how you define 'religion' and since it is diversely defined you must explain your meaning else we will misunderstand each other. There are plenty of definitions where it isn't defined in terms of deities.
>Atheists generally fall into the category of "secular humanists." This is a religion.
It isn't according to the definitions defining it in terms of a deity,supernatural entities,or the cause,nature,origin or purpose of the universe, but perhaps according to the broader sociological or anthropological definitions. I would say secular humanism is a worldview but is not a religion. Further I dont know, and I would like evidence that most atheists are secular humanists.

>It is a religion that makes man and his ability to reason the "god" of their religion.
You put "god" in quotes presumably to expressing a nonliteral meaning that is part of the literal meaning of 'god'.But what is this nonliteral meaning? To avoid misunderstandings you should explain nonliteral meanings. If this nonliteral meaning is that that humans and their mind, including their cognitive abilties, are considered more important than the concept of any deities, especially for solving problems, whereas in some theistic religions this is not true, then I agree. But certainly, unlike deities, secular humanists dont worship other humans or the human mind, nor have rituals of reverence about either -unlike some theistic religions have about their deities. If so then you're using the whole of a word- 'god' - in quotes to express part of what you mean by it. For e.g. this would be rather like calling cars 'bicycles' because they both have in common that they have wheels, even though there are differences. Perhaps this is because in your religious worldview nothing else has this part of the meaning of 'god', or it's difficult for for to literally express this part, and hence you use 'god' nonliterally to refer to it? An example of this would be if someone who had never seen a car calling it a 'bicycle' because part of the meaning of 'bicycle' includes that it has wheels.It may also allow you to mistakenly project the other denotative and connotative meanings of 'god' onto secular humanists.
>Evolution is the main way to "explain their origins," as you would say theists--and all other religions--explain their origins.
Even if most secular humansits explain the origin of humans by evolution, it isn't part of pirnciples of secular huamnism, nor do I believe logically implied by them: http://www.secularhumanism.org/index.php?section=main&page=affirmations I challenge you to prove otherwise. So this is different to some religions which do have an explanation for the origin of humans. However even if secular humanism did the difference is that a religious explanation involves purpose whereas evolution doesn't.
>Therefore, if teaching the potential and probability of an Intelligent Designer is not allowed in a classroom, than secular
>humanists/evolutionists/atheists are themselves trying to establish a religion, the religion of secular atheistic humanism--
>violating the separation of church and state.
How is not allowing a theory not considered as scientific by the scientific community, an imposition of ANY of the affirmations of secular humanism that are not themselves also part of the education system which aims to teach science? How does it violate the separation of church and state? You've also changed it from 'secular humanism' to 'secular atheistic humanism'. Explain the difference.

>This goes without mentioning the often fraudulent "proof" put forward for Evolution, as well as the fact that it is often
>taught AS FACT, which is more than un-scientific: it's a malicious and straight-out lie.

That's debatable.I hope you know that in a debate claims must be made on common ground or else proven, Certainly these claims are not and hence you must prove them or withdraw them.

>Lastly, as an Australian, I would not expect you to understand the meaning of America's separation of church and state,
>for the vast majority of Americans do not. That wording does not even appear in the Constitution. The Constitution says
> that the government "shall not establish a religion." This was to assure citizens that the government would not interfere
>with their freedom of religion--not vice versa. The term "separation of church and state" appeared first in a letter by
>Thomas Jefferson TO BAPTISTS, assuring them that the government would not establish CONGREGATIONALISM
>as the state church, like Anglicanism was in England.

I dont have enough knowledge to discuss this so I wont.

>Yet, now, in every public arena almost, it seems that secular humanism--or, if not that, than universalism--is established as
>the state religion.
I would like you to prove to me that secular humanist affirmations or whatever you mean by 'universalism' are taught in every public arena.This seems to me to be paranoia and confusion of secularism or the lack of a christian theocratic society with secular humanism.

>The Intelligent Design Movement is not asking to be the only science taught in schools. It wants to be taught alongside
>Evolution as an alternate. Why won't evolutionists accept this? Because they want to keep their monopoly on child
>-brainwashing.

As I explained the consensus is that ID is not science.Thus ist should be taught in biology, although it could be taught as an alternative explanation to evolution in religious studies classes. You then give a totally ridiculous hypothesis about evolutionists.Has it ever occured to you that there is a monopoly because ID is not a scientific theory and evolution is?

>Lastly, since you still won't --and obviously will never-- get my logical explanation of Intelligent Designer, I will say no
>more on it now.
That's presumptuous.And your explanation was not logical in the sense of having sentences that are unclear, or express false or unproven propostions, and having arguments that are either invalid or not proven valid.

5/10/06 5:56 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE daniel:

RE: "1 Just for the record, do you believe in evolution?"

I have no need to believe or not to believe in evolution.

RE: "Do you believe in absolutes?"

I have no need to believe or not to believe in absolutes.

5/10/06 12:09 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE daniel:

RE: "So all this debate comes from the validity of the term 'intelligent designer'? So in the end it all comes down to the definition of the English word 'intelligence.'"

The definition is certainly a key point in the argument. In order to define the argument, it is a good idea to define the meaning of words. Otherwise people are debating at cross-purposes.

RE: " This is as simple as declaring that if beepbeep's definition of the word is correct, than the term is invalid. However, if KA's definition is correct, than we can use it in this sense. "

Well, it isn't "my definition", it is the primary definition from the dictionary.
INTELLIGENCE: - capacity for learning, reasoning, understanding, and similar forms of mental activity; aptitude in grasping truths, relationships, facts, meanings, etc.

If a being is described as being intelligent. It is because it displays behaviours which we consider to be signs of intelligence. Certainly human beings consider "the capacity to learn" to be one of the primary ways to display intelligence.

RE: "Evolution is in fact a religion. Creation and evolution are both religious belief systems that interpret science in two far different ways."

No. I disagree. Evolution is not literally or technically a religion. A religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, ESPECIALLY when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

Evolution does not suggest a cause or purpose for the universe. Evolution does neither suggest a god nor does it assume a god. It is "god neutral." Evolution does not involve devotional or ritual observances which suggest a moral code for human affairs.

RE: "You have your view of how the world started (a big bang or something along those lines), your view of the purpose of the existence of man (to survive and become greater), and even your own gods (science and yourselves). "

Evolution is not "big bang theory" so I hope you were not suggesting that.

I don't know if the universe had a beginning or not. One of the scientific concepts is that it did. Another is that it had MANY beginnings. I don't claim to know if it had a beginning, multiple beginnings, or no beginning.

I don't worship myself, I don't worship science and I don't worship god/gods. I am distinctly a non-worship type of gal.

Having said that, I do think that science provides models which best explain the natural world. But, I do not make a claim that god/gods do not exist, I simply don't believe that they exist.

RE: " If you want religion out of schools, than get evolution out of there and let people put the facts together for themselves."

Firstly, religion has never been "out of schools." If you believe in an omnicient god, it is everywhere, even in schools.

Religion isn't taught as a subject in public schools, but it certainly is in private ones. So, you have a great choice of religious institutions to send your children to if you want them to receive a religious education. And certainly, you can take them to church every sunday and to sunday school and religious camps.

Religion has been taught in public schools here for approximately 50 years. It is not compulsory. And many parents do not require their children to attend as religious education is something they prefer to have a say in themselves.

Most people are quite specific in their religious needs. They worship differently, sometimes to a different god or gods. And they observe different devotional practices and rituals. In other words, "one size religion" does not fit all.

Religious education in public schools here has been a howling success story. It has created thousands of australian atheists, agnostics, unbelievers, nonbelievers and assorted heretics and blasphemers.

RE: 'separation of church and state'

The US and similarly with Australia are both defined as secular states. A secular state is a state or country that officially is neutral in matters of religion, neither supporting nor opposing any particular religious beliefs or practices, and has no state religion or equivalent.

This is different to countries which have a state religion. It is also different to countries which are a theocracy.

These countries define themselves officially as secular. Australia, Belgium, France, Germany, India, Nepal, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Turkey and the United States of America.

5/10/06 12:52 pm  
Blogger Kingdom Advancer said...

"I suggest that you use the scientific method to prove the existence of your god with no reference to evolution or modern cosmology. Go right ahead."--Beepbeep

Science is not exact. It's a study of man, and therefore it is imperfect. You cannot use the deductive method of proving God at a rate of 100 percentile using only the scientific method. If you ignore the Bible, and all the work that God has done outside of the Bible, as well as your own conscience telling you a God exists Whose laws you've transgressed (this is not an "emotional need"; it's something God put in you to help you discover the truth), then you will not get the proof that you require. Especially since you seem bent on doing whatever you can to prove the non-existence of God.
The thing is, you can't prove Evolution is true, either. In fact, Evolution is (and has been) proven to be improbable, implausible, and impossible to the utmost degree. Does that mean "therefore, God" (your words)? No! But does that mean "therefore not Evolution...what's next?"? Yes! But, of course, you won't admit that--you refuse to even talk about Evolution.

""A religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs."
Secular humanism has a set of beliefs.
It does not have a set of beliefs concerning the cause or purpose of the universe.
It does not believe that a superhuman agency is responsible for the creation of said universe.
It does not have devotional or ritual observances.
It does suggest a moral code without belief in a superhuman agency responsible for creating the universe.
So, secular humanism is not a religion." --Beepbeep

Two of the elements that you said secular humanism does not possess are NON-ESSENTIALS. It's dishonest (or ignorant--take your pick) to say that these qualities lacking (and the "devotionals/rituals" one is up for debate) mean that Secular Humanism is not a religion.

This is the bare-bones definition of religion:
"A set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe."

You said that Secular Humanism doesn't even fall into that category. But if you say that we were not purposed or caused by some greater being; if you say that no God exists; but you are also saying you don't necessarily know our purpose, then you are stating your beliefs: you don't know, but you know a Creator didn't put us here, so really, we aren't PURPOSED--our purpose is what we make it. Perhaps "survival of the fittest." That's a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe. Sad? Yes. Depressing? Yes. Hopeless? Pretty much.

Here's more tidbits about Secular Humanism being a religion:
A 1929 book entitled, "Humanism: A New Religion." It states: "Humanism is not simply another denomination of Protestant Christianity; it is not a creed; nor is it a cult. It is a new type of religion altogether."

The American Humanist Association receives a RELIGIOUS TAX EXEMPTION!

Auburn University lists humanists under "campus ministries"!

Arizona University lists humanists under "religious"!

University of Minnesota lists humanists under "religious"!

The Harvard University Gazette: 7/09/93 referenced a "humanist chaplain..."!

John Dewey wrote "A Common Faith" about humanism! Yale published the book under religion!

Harvard University's religious card lists "humanist chaplaincy"! They have a reverend!

In books about religions of the world, humanism is involved!

Look at the second edition of "A World Religious Reader." It lists the world's religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Shintoism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Sikhism. But, it lists Secular Humanism at the top!

John Dewey stated about Humanism being taught in schools: "Education is the most powerful ally of Humanism, and every American public school is a school of Humanism. What can the theistic Sunday Schools, meeting for an hour once a week, and teaching only a fraction of the children, do to stem the tide of a five-day program of humanistic teaching?" How sneaky!

Dewey said in "A Common Faith" in reference to Humanism, "Here are all the elements for a religious faith."

Tolbert H. McCarroll, executive director of "The Humanist" magazine, wrote an article titled "Religions of the Future," and predicted that Humanism would be the "largest religious body of the future."

Lloyd Morain, who was the former president of the American Humanist Association, stated this about Humanists: "Theirs is a religion without a god, divine revelation, or sacred scriptures." Apparently, the president of the AHA didn't think those elements necessary to be a religion.

Edwin H. Wilson, a Humanist leader, said: "The popular notion that religion is identical and exclusively concerned with God, immortality, and revelation is denied in the writings of Curtis Reese, J.A.C.F. Auer, E.E. Ames, H.N. Wieman, Alfred Loisy, Julian Huxley, A.E. Haydon, and many others." I guess all those people disagree with your opinion of what a religion is.

Curtis Reese said: "Today, as never before, Humanism is making itself felt in religious circles."

One's view of God--whatever it might be--is a religious belief. Atheists believe in the religion of atheism. Thomas Jefferson, when debating over the separation of church and state, defined religion to include "all believers or UNBELIEVERS of the Bible."

In 1961 humanism was officially recognized as a religion in the Supreme Court Case "Torcaso v. Watkins."

Webster's dictionary definition of religion includes "any system of belief, practices, ethical values, etc., resembling, suggestive of, or likened to such a system."
We know that Humanism has such a system.
[source: David Noebel and the book he co-authored, "Mind Siege"]

I could go on and on for much, much longer, but why beat a dead horse that's already been killed? Humanists consider Humanism a religion. The definition of religion would consider Humanism a religion. Courts consider Humanism to be a religion. And others, from universities to Thomas Jefferson, consider Humanism to be a religion. I think it's a religion.

And, what Humanists would run with is that Evolution explains the origin of the universe. You can deny this--but technically, it's your right to deny anything, no matter how true it is. Therefore, if you want Intelligent Design taught only in religion classes, than, by all means, keep Evolution and Secular Humanism in those same classes. Perhaps you could start a private school system: "Secular Humanism School System."
I'm sure you'd have just as big of an audience as the public schools. Yeah. Right.

"Science NEITHER ASSUME A CREATOR NOR DOES IT DENY ONE."--Beepbeep

Well, considering Evolution basically considers a Creator un-important and non-essential, you should be all about getting Evolution out of the science class and saying, "The Theory of Evolution is NOT SCIENCE!"

"the "Intelligent Design Movement" is not science."--Beepbeep

First off, I doubt I'd give any credibility to anything you say about the Intelligent Design Movement. If you think it's not science, then you obviously don't know much about it. Sure, at its base, it shows the need for a designer, who isn't MINDLESS, as the process of Evolution is. But, the Intelligent Design Movement really just teaches the complexity and wonder of nature--leaving the thought that Evolution could not have developed the universe.

" I suggest that this is what you do. It has been a raging success here in Australia and has bred a nation of non-believers, atheists, skeptics and agnostics.
So the sooner you start to indoctrinate children into religion in schools, the better I say!"--Beepbeep

Ah, the old reverse psychology trick. My, how you've changed my mind! ;)


Polaterality: I really have nothing more to say to you.
But, if I must:
So you're saying that God couldn't apply omniscience to designing the universe? As a matter of fact, God would NEED omniscience to design the universe. Then, God must have omniscience and have applied it to creating the universe.
The brain surgeon would not be using omniscience in brain surgery to "learn something new about his patients." I meant that he knew everything there was to know. He'd be applying his brain surgery omniscience to surgery itself.
Similarly, God applied His omniscience to creating this universe, not to "learning something new about the universe."
If you want to say that God is omniscient, possessing all knowledge, superior mental abilities, and the ability to apply knowledge (for creating the universe, for His glory, and for the best for mankind), and yet want to say He can't be intelligent, then, well...I guess I'll agree to disagree with your assessment of "intelligent."
Your brain has been twisted into a knot I can't untie. The fact that you say an omniscient being couldn't "think" shows how preposterous your claim is. God can untie that knot in your mind. Hopefully He will.

5/10/06 12:59 pm  
Blogger Kingdom Advancer said...

You'll be getting my next comment soon. But my computer just updated and I wanted to make some quick points:
Polaterality: Boy, I'm impressed at how long you can type about things being in quotation marks. By 'god,' I meant that humanists/atheists place the mind--the human ability to reason--above all else. Therefore, because they rationally think through that a god does not exist, then a god does not exist to them. They make their mind the "ultimate authority," and that's the sense I mean "god." They'd put their ability to reason and think above anything else, even though history has shown time and time again the errors mankind has committed.

"I dont understand how something can have degrees of being unscientific."--P.

As in, if Intelligent Design is un-scientific because it tries to prove our origins, than Evolution is MORE un-scientific because it tries to prove our origins, but has often been attempted with fraudulent means, and has often been attempted pre-maturely (with evidence eventually being discovered to be inaccurate), and has often been demonstrated to be implausible.

"That's debatable." --P.

If you think it's debatable that there have been evolutionist frauds and if you think it's debatable that teaching Evolution as fact is dishonest, than you've lost all credibility.

"How is not allowing a theory not considered as scientific by the scientific community, an imposition of ANY of the affirmations of secular humanism that are not themselves also part of the education system which aims to teach science? How does it violate the separation of church and state? You've also changed it from 'secular humanism' to 'secular atheistic humanism'. Explain the difference."--P.

It violates the separation of church and state because humanism is a religion and wants to teach exclusively its theories on the origin of the universe in a public place (notably, the schools.)
I wanted to clarify 'secular atheistic humanism,' since generally, no humanist believes in God.
And don't give me the "scientific community" stuff? What scientific community did you consult? Staunch believers in Creationism? Intelligent Design? Or just evolutionists and "I don't know what happened" people? Throughout the ages in all studies, there have been people rejected by the intellectual communities--when those rejected were right. The Bible talks about people rejecting God/Jesus as "rejecting the chief cornerstone."

"I would like you to prove to me that secular humanist affirmations or whatever you mean by 'universalism' are taught in every public arena.This seems to me to be paranoia and confusion of secularism or the lack of a christian theocratic society with secular humanism. "--Beepbeep

Universalism, basically means, "All roads lead to heaven. There is no wrong way and/or right way." Therefore, all religions are to believe that way and not try to get others to believe what they believe.
Ever saying that God is out of bounds implies when anti-God (atheism) is not out of bounds is establishing atheism, and pretty much, then, Secular Humanism. Read my previous comment.

For everything else, please just read my previous comment again. I'll make another comment tomorrow, perhaps, if I feel it's necessary.

5/10/06 1:22 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: kingdom advancer:

RE: "Science is not exact. It's a study of man, and therefore it is imperfect."

I don't claim that science is perfect. You are the one who claims a perfect being. I don't.

RE: "The thing is, you can't prove Evolution is true, either. In fact, Evolution is (and has been) proven to be improbable, implausible, and impossible to the utmost degree."

Go right ahead and prove that evolution isn't true.

RE: "Two of the elements that you said secular humanism does not possess are NON-ESSENTIALS. It's dishonest (or ignorant--take your pick) to say that these qualities lacking (and the "devotionals/rituals" one is up for debate) mean that Secular Humanism is not a religion.

Ahhh, your comprehension problem strikes again.

This is one thought. What is said in the one thought is this - "A religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs."

There is no colon (:) separating "A religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe," and this >> "especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs."

It is a complete description of what a religion is. As I said, you have a comprehension problem which I also demonstrated previously.

RE: "Here's more tidbits about Secular Humanism being a religion:
A 1929 book entitled, "Humanism: A New Religion." It states: "Humanism is not simply another denomination of Protestant Christianity; it is not a creed; nor is it a cult. It is a new type of religion altogether."

A humanist is just basically someone who has a strong interest in, or concern for human welfare, values, and dignity. There is a difference between humanism and secular humanism.

Many religious people also consider themselves to be humanists, but it is unlikely that they would consider themselves to be secular humanists. For instance. There are secular humanists and religious humanists.

Religious humanism is the branch of humanism which embraces some form of theism, deism, or supernaturalism, without necessarily being allied with organized religion, as such.

In fact, the first humanists were religious ones who professed Renaissance Humanism. The Renaissance humanists were often devout Christians.

RE: " John Dewey stated about Humanism being taught in schools: "Education is the most powerful ally of Humanism, and every American public school is a school of Humanism. What can the theistic Sunday Schools, meeting for an hour once a week, and teaching only a fraction of the children, do to stem the tide of a five-day program of humanistic teaching?"

As I said, many religious people were and are humanists. You apparently are unaware that humanism was begun by extremely religious people, many of them who were devout christians.

But, having said that, secular humanism, (as distinct from humanism or religious humanism), is not a religion because a religion has as part of its definition, the belief in a superhuman agency which is responsible for the nature, cause and purpose of the universe.

You are arguing at cross purposes if you want to argue that some forms of humanism are a religion.

If humanism requires as part of its tenet, a belief in a superhuman being who is responsible for the nature, cause and purpose of the universe, then it is a religion. But it doesn't.

Secular humanists do NOT have a belief in a superhuman being who is responsible for the nature, cause and purpose of the universe, though some people who call themselves humanist, or religious humanists do.

So your argument has a basic problem. You confuse humanism with secular humanism and religious humanism with secular humanism. And you want to attribute the same charateristics to each one because of your confusion.

RE: "Well, considering Evolution basically considers a Creator un-important and non-essential, you should be all about getting Evolution out of the science class and saying, "The Theory of Evolution is NOT SCIENCE!"

Science cannot test for a creator. In the same way that I cannot test for invisible flying pink unicorns.

RE: "the "Intelligent Design Movement" is not science."

I have tried to explain to you that science cannot test for a designer. Even if Behe is able to convince the scientific community that there is such a thing as "irreducible complexity", it takes a leap of faith to assume a god.

It then takes another leap of faith to assume that it IS your god.

The argument from "irreducible complexity" is the same argument as : An atom is the smallest thing in the universe therefore god.

That one didn't work either. Neither of them work because it takes a leap of faith to pretend they work. You might as well settle for the "argument from incredulity" which goes something like this>> We don't know therefore god which is also an illogical argument.

5/10/06 3:20 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: kingdom advancer:

RE: Everything in your last post.

Read my reply.

Then read it again, in case your comprehension skills need time to catch up with your dogma.

5/10/06 3:40 pm  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

Kingdom Advancer said...
I omitted the part about what science is because Im not interested to discuss that

>""A religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as
>the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing
>a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs."
>Secular humanism has a set of beliefs.
>It does not have a set of beliefs concerning the cause or purpose of the universe.
>It does not believe that a superhuman agency is responsible for the creation of said universe.
>It does not have devotional or ritual observances.
>It does suggest a moral code without belief in a superhuman agency responsible for creating the universe.
>So, secular humanism is not a religion." --Beepbeep

>Two of the elements that you said secular humanism does not possess are NON-ESSENTIALS. It's dishonest (or
>ignorant--take your pick) to say that these qualities lacking (and the "devotionals/rituals" one is up for debate) mean that
>Secular Humanism is not a religion.

>This is the bare-bones definition of religion:
>"A set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe."

There is no bare-bones agreed upon definition of 'religion'. In my last article I classified all the definitions of 'religion' in various dictionaries both general and specialist at http://www.onelook.com/?w=religion&ls=a according to what they define 'religion' in terms of. Each of the following is a term associated with a different type of definition of 'religion': (1) belief in a deity, (2) belief in a supernatural entity,(3) beliefs about the cause,nature,origin or purpose of the universe (4) sociological and anthropological definitions where 'religion' is defined in terms of terms synonymous with 'worldview'. Note that (1) to (4) are not definitions of 'religion', they are terms used in different definitions of 'religion' at the site that can be used to classify different tyeps of definitions.
In conclusion something may be a religion according to one type of definition but not another.
For e.g. for Theravada Buddhism, definitions of type (1) exclude it as a religion but not those of type (4).
For secular humanism types (1),(2) and (3) exclude it as a religion but type (4) define it as one.
So since 'religion' is defined in different ways, to avoid misunderstanding you should explain how you are defining it. But what you do above is to use your definition of religion and then legislate that this is the only definition of the word 'religion' and hence what everyone means by it.This is the result of either a lack of research into the semantic diversity of the word, or just wishful thinking. You define 'religion' as: "A set of beliefs concerning the cause,nature,and purpose of the universe.". This is an example of a type (3) definition.Using that type of definition secular humanism is not a religion.

>You said that Secular Humanism doesn't even fall into that category. But if you say that we were not purposed or caused
>by some greater being; if you say that no God exists; but you are also saying you don't necessarily know our purpose,
>then you are stating your beliefs: you don't know, but you know a Creator didn't put us here, so really, we aren't
>PURPOSED--our purpose is what we make it.
Secular humanism doesn't state that no deities exist or God doesn't exist. -since agnostics can be secular humanists too.
You are also confusing what you believe is a consequence about any purpose for living of not believing in your deity with principles of secular humanism.Show me where in the principles of secular humanism 'our purpose is what we make it' is found: http://www.secularhumanism.org/index.php?section=main&page=affirmations

>Perhaps "survival of the fittest."
You seem to be confusing social darwinism with biological Darwinism.

>That's a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe. Sad? Yes. Depressing? Yes. Hopeless?
>Pretty much.

Lastly even if you are correct that secular humanism has a set of beliefs about the purpose of living(which you are not), this doesn't amount to a set of beliefs about the CAUSE, NATURE AND purpose of the universe.There is nothing in the principles of secular humanism about that.
I have omitted everything except the 1st and last part where you attempt to prove that secular humanism is a religion:
>Here's more tidbits about Secular Humanism being a religion:
.................
>I could go on and on for much, much longer, but why beat a dead horse that's already been killed? Humanists consider
>Humanism a religion. The definition of religion would consider Humanism a religion. Courts consider Humanism to be a
>religion. And others, from universities to Thomas Jefferson, consider Humanism to be a religion. I think it's a religion.

You seem to think that there is one meaning of 'religion' that all of the uses of this word in what you quote expresses. Has it ever occured to you they might be using 'religion' in different senses -perhaps differing according to the 4 types of definitions I gave above? It doesn't matter if some secular humanists say or write that it is a religion, what matters is what they MEAN by 'religion'. You dont seem to understand nor have bothered to attempt to understand the diverse semantics of 'religion' at all. Read what I wrote again CAREFULLY. I will repeat it here for you:
For secular humanism types (1),(2) and (3) exclude it as a religion but type (4) defines it as one.
I am quite happy to call secular humanism a religion provided you explain which definition you're using and how from it that it follows it is. I've already said that a type (4) definition defines it as a religion -and any worldview is a religion under type (4) definitions for that matter.

5/10/06 4:53 pm  
Anonymous Polaterality said...

Kingdom Advancer wrote:

>You'll be getting my next comment soon. But my computer just updated and I wanted to make some quick points:
>Polaterality: Boy, I'm impressed at how long you can type about things being in quotation marks. By 'god,' I meant that
>humanists/atheists place the mind--the human ability to reason--above all else. Therefore, because they rationally think
>through that a god does not exist, then a god does not exist to them. They make their mind the "ultimate authority," and that's
>the sense I mean "god." They'd put their ability to reason and think above anything else, even though history has shown time
>and time again the errors mankind has committed.

But you cannot prove on common ground that you also dont make errors since your cognition too is fallible.For e.g. you can make make errors using your mind in interpreting your scripture, or acting on your religious beliefs.Unless you claim that some supernatural processes prevents you from making such errors at least some times.But then this claim isn't on common ground since you'd have to prove the existence of such.

>"I dont understand how something can have degrees of being unscientific."--P.
>As in, if Intelligent Design is un-scientific because it tries to prove our origins, than Evolution is MORE un-scientific because it
>tries to prove our origins, but has often been attempted with fraudulent means, and has often been attempted pre-maturely
>(with evidence eventually being discovered to be inaccurate), and has often been demonstrated to be implausible.

>"That's debatable." --P.

>If you think it's debatable that there have been evolutionist frauds and if you think it's debatable that teaching Evolution as fact
>is dishonest, than you've lost all credibility.
No you've lost all credibility if you claim I'm claiming that frauds were not frauds -notice you also said IN ADDTION THAT' '..and has often been attempted pre-maturely (with evidence eventually being discovered to be inaccurate), and has often been demonstrated to be implausible.' That is the part thats debatable though Im not going to debate it here since the original topic was on the attributes of your deity.

>"How is not allowing a theory not considered as scientific by the scientific community, an imposition of ANY of the
>affirmations of secular humanism that are not themselves also part of the education system which aims to teach science? How
>does it violate the separation of church and state? You've also changed it from 'secular humanism' to 'secular atheistic
>humanism'. Explain the difference."--P.
>It violates the separation of church and state because humanism is a religion and wants to teach exclusively its theories on the
>origin of the universe in a public place (notably, the schools.)
Firstly read what I wrote about the different definitions of 'religion', then explain what you mean by 'religion' here, since I proved your definition in the last post implies that secular humanism is not a religion.Also read what I wrote about even if secular humanism is a religion in any sense, and that secular humanism doesn't have any theories on the origin of the universe- some secular humanists do but those theories are NOT part of secular humanism -just as some lawyers in chicago may happen to eat at Mcdonalds but eating at mcdonalds is not necessary for being a lawyer.

5/10/06 5:31 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The question of believing in absolutes is absolutely necessary. If you believe that there are absolutes, than some all powerful someone or something must have put then there. We all know that you cannot absolutely believe that there are no absolutes. From your reply (correct me if I’m wrong), which states, ‘I have no need to believe or not to believe in absolutes,’ than it would appear that you are an agnostic in this area, that you have no answer and that you don’t know and don’t care. On your response about evolution, ‘I have no need to believe or not to believe in evolution,’ you have four choices. Choice #1 We all evolved from goo. Choice #2 We were created by some all-powerful deity. Choice #3 We were made by little green men from outer space (and who knows where they came from!). Choice #4 Again agnosticism, you don’t know where we came from and you don’t care. Take your pick.
Back to definitions. ‘Well, it isn't "my definition", it is the primary definition from the dictionary. INTELLIGENCE: - capacity for learning, reasoning, understanding, and similar forms of mental activity; aptitude in grasping truths, relationships, facts, meanings, etc.’ And do you know for sure that that is the definition that they are using?
And no I am not saying that evolution is not just ‘big bang theory.’ Evolution is changing with every new find out there and I can’t keep up with all the latest variations, so I just pick one of the older versions. By the way did you check out the web sites that I mentioned? I especially like the header for answersingenesis. As for the different theories concerning beginnings, if it had a beginning, where did everything come from? The same for many beginnings. Where did the matter come from each time? In no beginnings, are the universe and all the atoms therein eternal? Science has demonstrated that everything is quickly wearing down(I’m going to stop there be for I put down enough material for a large booklet.
In the separation of church and state, I'm not saying that the church should dictate to the government what they can and can't do, and neither should the state dictate what the church can and can't do. Here in the U.S., we are quickly losing the freedom to do anything in public that has any reference to our faith. An army chaplain just got court-martialed for praying in Jesus name IN A CHAPEL! DURING A FURERAL! Maybe ‘separation of church and state’ is carried on in moderation in Australia, But not here in America. So much for the land of the free.
Daniel

6/10/06 1:29 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: daniel:

RE "The question of believing in absolutes is absolutely necessary. If you believe that there are absolutes, than some all powerful someone or something must have put then there."

The dictionary describes an "absolute" like this.
ABSOLUTE: - free from imperfection; complete; perfect.

Of course YOU believe in an absolute and that absolute is god. So you are compelled by your belief to believe in an absolute.

Now I think it is also time to explain to you how I hear the words "belief /believe" when theists say them.

When I hear someone say "I believe in the existence of god." This is how I hear it - "I have trust or faith that god exists. I only have trust or faith in things if I can't actually prove it. I have trust or faith in it because I have insufficent evidence to state that it is true. "

So, in reality, there is very little that I say I believe in, as to me, this would be saying I have trust or faith in something which might be without reasonable cause.

So, I am unlikely to say that I believe in the existence of a god AND I am unlikely to say that I believe in string theory. There is either sufficient evidence so that I don't have to use the word "believe" or there is not.

On the case of "string theory", if I was very interested in it, I might read some peer-reviewed articles about it and if I was able to understand what they were talking about, (which isn't a given), I might end up saying something like this:-

"The evidence presented by these people about the model of physics called String theory strongly suggests the existence of ten or eleven spacetime dimensions."

I wouldn't need to BELIEVE that the model suggests that, I would know that it does.

RE: "‘I have no need to believe or not to believe in absolutes,’ than it would appear that you are an agnostic in this area, that you have no answer and that you don’t know and don’t care."

It is true, I don't have a need to believe in absolutes. People with a god belief need to believe in an absolute. I don't have a god belief, so I don't have a need to believe in an absolute god.

RE: "Choice #1 We all evolved from goo. Choice #2 We were created by some all-powerful deity. Choice #3 We were made by little green men from outer space (and who knows where they came from!). Choice #4 Again agnosticism, you don’t know where we came from and you don’t care. Take your pick."

Well, the choices are an limited as the human imagination. Some people have a better imagination than others. My list could probably go on for years before my imagination ran out or I started repeating myself.

The question is: How many of the things in the list can you provide evidence for which doesn't involve faith that they exist?

RE: " Back to definitions. ‘Well, it isn't "my definition", it is the primary definition from the dictionary. INTELLIGENCE: - capacity for learning, reasoning, understanding, and similar forms of mental activity; aptitude in grasping truths, relationships, facts, meanings, etc.’ And do you know for sure that that is the definition that they are using?"


It is the definition I am using for the argument and that is why I posted it as part of the argument. If there is a disagreement about the definition, then that needs to be clearly stated, by anyone else who wants a piece of the argument.

This is why human beings specifically define things and why I provided as part of my argument a definition which is accepted as standard.

When a standard definition or an accepted definition is used it allows the argument to be specifically defined.

If you don't define what words mean in an argument, you haven't defined the argument. If you haven't defined the argument, people are not debating the same thing.

They are debating at cross purposes with each basing their argument on what might turn out to be, entirely different definitions. In other words, the argument is not based on common ground. Defining what a word means and defining the argument allows the argument to be based on common ground.

RE: "By the way did you check out the web sites that I mentioned? I especially like the header for answersingenesis."

I have looked at answeringgenesis on a few occasions. It is a fundamentalist christian site which assumes the existence of a god. It not only assumes the existence of a god, it assumes that if a god exists, that it is the christian god. It not only assumes that a god exists and that it is the christian god, it assumes that the bible is literally true.

The site then based on these assumptions tries to prove the existence of god and the literalness of the bible, by trying to disprove any science which might contradict their version of the bible.

It is the same strategy that was used by the catholic church for humdreds of years. And it goes along these lines:
1.Science is imperfect.
2. God is perfect.
3. The bible is the word of god. 4. Therefore if the bible says that snakes talk they do.
5. If science say that they don't, it is because science is imperfect.
6. Science is imperfect therefore god is perfect, therefore snakes talk. (and so on an nauseum)

It is just the same old circular argument which is illogical. And remember, you want to believe in an absolute, something which is perfect, so this is why it seems reasonable to you.

RE: " As for the different theories concerning beginnings, if it had a beginning, where did everything come from? The same for many beginnings. Where did the matter come from each time? In no beginnings, are the universe and all the atoms therein eternal?"

Well, I don't claim to know. My guess is that the universe has existed in some form always. It may have had many big bangs or many changes throughout its entire existence. I don't know. I don't claim to know. God believers claim to know. In reality they BELIEVE, but they don't know.

RE: "Here in the U.S., we are quickly losing the freedom to do anything in public that has any reference to our faith. An army chaplain just got court-martialed for praying in Jesus name IN A CHAPEL! DURING A FURERAL! "

My understanding of this event is that he was not arrested at a funeral, but at a political rally.
Navy Denies That He Couldn't Pray In Jesus's Name http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/09/AR2006010901812.html

It appears that the "fire and brimstone preacher" wants to be able to send men off to war to fight for jesus but he wants to convert them to evangelical christianity before they go.

6/10/06 11:15 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, the Chaplin was court-martialed for praying in Jesus name during the funeral of a fellow Christian soldier. Look at www.persuade.tv, it has everything documented.
Daniel

7/10/06 1:03 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So you have FAITH that the universe has always existed in one form or another? If you look at it objectively, evolution requires as much or more faith than does creation.
Daniel

7/10/06 1:08 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: anonymous daniel:

RE: "So you have FAITH that the universe has always existed in one form or another? If you look at it objectively, evolution requires as much or more faith than does creation."

Not at all. If you read what I said, I said this - "Well, I don't claim to know. My guess is that the universe has existed in some form always. It may have had many big bangs or many changes throughout its entire existence. I don't know."

This is entirely different to saying, "I have faith that the universe has always existed."

You appear to want to assume that the words "faith" and "guess" are the same thing. If they are the same thing, is god only a guess for you?

7/10/06 1:22 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: anonymous daniel:
RE: "No, the Chaplin was court-martialed for praying in Jesus name during the funeral of a fellow Christian soldier. Look at www.persuade.tv, it has everything documented."

Persuade.tv is an evangelical site. It is hardly objective in the matter. It is run by "Persuade the World Ministries". The chaplin in question is the founder of "persuade the World Ministries."

Gordon James Klingenschmitt is an Evangelical Episcopal chaplain in the US Navy who came into conflict with a 1998 doctrine requiring chaplains to couch their expressions of religious faith outside worship services in a "non-sectarian" fashion.

Gordon James Klingenschmitt founded the 501(c3) nonprofit Persuade The World Ministries in 1999, for radio broadcasting etc.

7/10/06 1:30 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

daniel:
So you have FAITH that the universe has always existed in one form or another?
Fallacy of the stolen concept. I have CONFIDENCE that matter has always existed. Unless you can prove otherwise?
If you look at it objectively, evolution requires as much or more faith than does creation.
Oh, please. What egregious nonsense.
Go look up 'falsifiability', that is, if you have anything resembling a scientific bent whatsoever.
Evolution is falsifiable, creation(ism) is NOT.

12/10/06 8:50 am  
Anonymous Wormbrain said...

Worship the Flying Spaghetti Monster!
Be touched by his noodly appendage!

12/10/06 1:03 pm  
Blogger Austin said...

I know this post is old, but I should point out that you have defeated your own argument in your reply to me.

If capacity to learn relates to room for knowledge, then my argument stands. If it simply relates to applying knowledge (your revised position), then all God would have to do to be considered intelligent is apply knowledge, not gain any new knowledge. Obviously, we believe that he does this.

20/12/06 11:41 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

God is not described as intelligent. He is described as omniscient. An intelligent god has the capacity to learn. An omniscient god has no need to learn as it supposedly knows everything.

20/12/06 2:48 pm  

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