DC's dangerous mutters topic

#1
As requested. I'll copy and paste when I get to a real computer ...
 
#4
Is Kaye right? Is Higgs Bosun a dangerous potential cult leader? Is it appropriate for somebody demanding reason and insisting on evidence in everybody's answers to everything to be called out for not providing reason, evidence or, frankly anything other than rude* assertion in their posts?

The man has a religious belief in the powers of science. That's why he doesn't have to substantiate his claims with evidence, falsifiable or not. His views are gospel (at least, to him...) so they don't need proof!
Oh, and I apologise for "mutters" rather than "nutters". If a kindly mod would correct that would be nice.

But if we're going to whisper about heretical blasphemy we can do it in here I guess. I'll get the leg irons and the red hot poker.
Nope - it's not here to talk about blasphemy, its here to talk about the scientific method and the limits on it.

Unjustified hypothesis alone is not enough. Not for me, not for Higgsy, not even for Dawkins or Hawking.
 
#5
What else do we have to go on but observation and logic? Do away with that and we fumble in the dark, rational thought gets replaced with fairy stories and the next thing you know we've got dogma and some mystic man telling us he can see the light.

I'm with Feynman and Socrates on this one.

If we look away from science and look at the world around us, we find out something rather pitiful: that the environment that we live in is so actively and intensely unscientific. Galileo could say ‘I noticed that Jupiter was a ball with moons and not a God in the sky. So hundreds of years later what’s happened to the astrologers?' Well they’re still here, the star signs are still printed in the papers each day and millions of people actually believe what they say. There is talk about telepathy, there is faith healing galore, there’s even a miracle at Lourdes where healing supposedly happens.

Now it might be true that astrology is actually right, maybe if you went to the Dentist on a day that Mars is at right angles to Venus then you won’t feel any pain. It might be true that you can be cured by a miracle at Lourdes, but if these things are true then they ought to be investigated. Why? To prove them to be true and to improve them. If these outrageous claims really are true then maybe we can find out if the stars really do influence life? We could investigate statistically, scientifically judging the evidence objectively and more carefully to discover if the healing process works at Lourdes, how close to the site do you have to stand? If it’s working well can you fit more people in? Do the effects wear off with distance? You may well laugh and scoff at these claims, but isn’t it our responsibility to investigate these things properly to improve their efficiency? More importantly, the results of these observations may have another alternative, that these things have absolutely no effect at all. If just one tiny bit of all this was actually true then imagine the impact it would have on our world view. Imagine if just one of these things would actually work, what if we really could communicate with God and the dead? It would have fantastic influence on our understanding of the world.

I want people to try in their own minds to understand the world in order to obtain a more consistent picture. People shouldn’t have to believe in myths and legends and things which cannot be proven and hold no scientific proof, it only leads to confusion and not only on medical grounds but ethical too.

The problem is when it gets to religion, as long as science doesn't attack religion then things are ok. Nobody has to pay attention and nobody has to learn anything. Science can be cut off from modern society except for its applications, then we have the trouble of explaining things to people who don’t want to know how the world works. Ask the question ‘Does Hell exist?’ A rational person would ask, how likely is it? But this is a terrifying transformation of the religious point of view and it’s also why the religious point of view is unscientific. We must discuss each question with the uncertainties that are allowed and as evidence grows it increases the probability that some idea is right, or decreases it. People are terrified, how can you live and not know? It’s not odd at all. You only think you know, as a matter of fact, most of our actions are based on incomplete knowledge. We don’t really know what it is all about, or what the purpose of the world is, or many other things. It’s important to live with uncertainty and it is possible to live and not know.

I feel quite saddened when I look at the world and see what few accomplishments we‘ve made compared to what potential there is for the human race. People in the past had dreams for the future and many were persecuted for the freedoms we enjoy today. In some ways we have surpassed expectations and others we have not. Universal education would be a wonderful thing, but you can teach bad as well as good, you can teach falsehood as well as truth.

So today we are not very well off, we don’t see that we have done too well. Philosophers of all ages, have tried to find the secret of existence an the meaning of it all, because if they could find the real meaning of life, then all this human effort, all this wonderful potentiality of human beings, could then be moved in the correct direction and we could march forwards with great success. So therefore we tried these different ideas, but the question of the meaning of the whole world, of life, and of human beings and so on, has been answered many times by many people. Unfortunately all the answers are different; and the people with one answer look with horror at the actions and behaviour of the people with another answer. Horror because they see the terrible things that are done; the way man is being pushed into a blind alley by this rigid view of the meaning of the world. In fact, it is really perhaps by the fantastic size of the horror that it becomes clear how great are the potentialities of human beings, and it is possibly this which makes us hope that if we could move things in the right direction, things would be much better.

What then is the meaning of the whole world? We do not know what the meaning of existence is. We say, as the result of studying all of the views that we have had before, we find that we do not know the meaning of existence; but in saying that we do not know the meaning of existence, we have probably found the open channel – if we will allow only that, as we progress, we leave open opportunities to other alternatives. It’s important that we don’t become too enthusiastic for the fact, the knowledge, the absolute truth, but remain always uncertain. It is our responsibility not to give the answer today as to what it is all about, to drive everybody down in one direction and say. ‘This is the solution to it all.’ Because we will be chained then to the limits of our present imagination. We should leave room for doubt, discussion and proceed in a way analogous to the sciences.
Richard Feynman - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

As for me, all I know is that I know nothing.
Socrates

I say quite deliberately that the Christian religion, as organized in its churches, has been and still is the principal enemy of moral progress in the world.
Bertrand Russell


[video=youtube;S6oOLJ_zbm0]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6oOLJ_zbm0]A.C. Grayling: "Teach the Controversy" - YouTube[/video]
AC Grayling


If we want to be honest with ourselves we should follow the philosophy of Golden Age Athens and Feynman - to admit ignorance and uncertainty. Not indoctrinate people with answers from myths which have little veracity or moral grounding.

This is the word of DC
 
#6
There is enough in that post to convince any rational person that religions are wrong. Religions are also malevolent, insidious and a danger to our species....

"I will not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand"...

Whoops!...that just slipped out....sowie.... :)
 
#8
Now you have hurt my feelings....sniff.
Okay, now go and jump off a cliff, please. Hopefully I've hurt your feelings enough for that to seem sensible..

How can one blow the whistle on religion without being called a bigot?
Well, you could start by toning down the monomania, cutting the initial dive to ad hominem, and giving people the same freedoms you demand. Your fundamental inconsistency is your most irritating trait.

And as a fool on a hill remain silent watching the struggle of ignorance v reason. It's not a matter of who has the most science or the most holy book in the world. It's down to a very basic intellectual view of the big picture. Standing on the shoulders of giants is enough...don't ask me to substantiate that the Earth is round.
Why not? It is easy enough to do.


You are a danger to your science unless you take a stand.
You are a joke. Me, a danger to science because I don't bath in your intolerance? Because I try to provide people with evidence rather than assertion? Because I don't insist that matter and energy are appearing and disappearing through invisible, undetectable, undefined "extra dimensions"?

Religion threatens to halt progress and to kill freedom...the freedom to allow religion is an ironic paradox.
No, it is not and does not. There are a few people, mostly in the middle USA and in some Islam (although you'd be surprised just how much most Islam, that where the base society has got beyond Dark Ages tribal farmers, sees science as its saviour) who wish to restrict some forms of science - mostly medical. There are many more who don't believe in some aspects of science - mostly to do with anything that insists on deep time. Meh. Have we superluminal neutrinos or not? I don't know - I know what I think (measurement error) but am happy to be proven wrong.

I do not demand that you trivially change what you believe to what I believe, I try to provide evidence when I am trying to convince you were you are making errors of fact. Where you are insisting on errors of logic or understanding, when you are insisting that you are the possessor of the "one, true and holy truth", that's when I start calling you a prat.

Freedom to believe, away from state control, mandated belief, the thought police - is actually more important than whether somebody thinks the same things I do, even about things I believe are important.
 
#9
You should certainly allow people to believe what they think, that's the entire purpose of liberty. But if they decide to believe a load of dangerous bunkum then it's our duty to point out the flaws of their logic for the benefit of mankind. Repeating old myths which have no grounding in factual evidence ad infinitum does little for human progress of integrity.

Mainstream religion relies on blind faith, you can't question it like you can science. In many places in the US and the ME there is no intellectual liberty to speak of, women go around in burqas and aren't allowed to drive or mingle with men. In some parts of the US children are indoctrinated at 'Jesus Camp' to the same level of brainwashing as Nazi Germany in 1936, the world was made in 6 days and is 6000 years old. Evolution doesn't exist. How does this sort of behaviour represent individual freedom in any way, shape or form? The word of God must be obeyed and any who oppose shall burn in hell or be ostracised by society. Science on the other hand, allows you to question the results, because that's the entire purpose of the Scientific Method.

Admitting that we don't know the answers is being honest, saying that the Islamic/Abrahamic God is the final and only answer is dangerous.

[video=youtube;LACyLTsH4ac]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LACyLTsH4ac[/video]

All together now!

He is trampling the infidels ba bababa dadaaaaa...
 
#10
In some parts of the US children are indoctrinated at 'Jesus Camp' to the same level of brainwashing as Nazi Germany in 1936, the world was made in 6 days and is 6000 years old. Evolution doesn't exist. How does this sort of behaviour represent individual freedom in any way, shape or form? The word of God must be obeyed and any who oppose shall burn in hell or be ostracised by society.
But, within a (classical, Hume or John Stuart Mill) liberal sense, anything that "society" can do badly, the government can do worse. Would you want Higgsy as the "Department of Anti-Religion priest-finder-in-chief" torturing your children to confess to your grandparents' latent religious sensibilities? He'd do it - you just know he would.
 
#11
This is an assumption that atheists would do bad, this document isn't mentioned or inspired by the Bible or Koran:

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
There should be love for the sake of love, mercy for the sake of mercy and kindness for the sake of kindness. People should not act good because they fear God's wrath, they should do it because they know it to be morally right.

The Bible and Koran, incidentally, preach plenty of intolerance and hatred, just look at non secular society for a tidal wave of bigotry wrapped in the love of baby Jesus (or the other chap).

I think we share common ground with the preservation of liberty, but imho religion stifles the freedom of speech. As Higgsy said, it is rather ironic that to defend freedom one must suppress religion.
 
C

count_duckula

Guest
#12
This is an assumption that atheists would do bad, this document isn't mentioned or inspired by the Bible or Koran:

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights



There should be love for the sake of love, mercy for the sake of mercy and kindness for the sake of kindness. People should not act good because they fear God's wrath, they should do it because they know it to be morally right.

The Bible and Koran, incidentally, preach plenty of intolerance and hatred, just look at non secular society for a tidal wave of bigotry wrapped in the love of baby Jesus (or the other chap).

I think we share common ground with the preservation of liberty, but imho religion stifles the freedom of speech. As Higgsy said, it is rather ironic that to defend freedom one must suppress religion.
When did you go from starting unfunny threads and talking shit to attempting cogent debate?
 
#13
This is an assumption that atheists would do bad, this document isn't mentioned or inspired by the Bible or Koran
Well, that doesn't make that much sense as a sentence. And of course a document written in 1948 isn't mentioned in older books. And, frankly, the drafting committee weren't exactly selected for their rigorous atheism. Eleanor Roosevelt had problems with the Catholic Church, true - but then she wasn't a Catholic.

I think we share common ground with the preservation of liberty, but imho religion stifles the freedom of speech. As Higgsy said, it is rather ironic that to defend freedom one must suppress religion.
It's not ironic - it's as wrong as most of the rest of what Higgsy writes. We don't need to suppress religion, we need merely to stop people forcing others to adopt their religious beliefs.
 
#14
Well, that doesn't make that much sense as a sentence. And of course a document written in 1948 isn't mentioned in older books. And, frankly, the drafting committee weren't exactly selected for their rigorous atheism. Eleanor Roosevelt had problems with the Catholic Church, true - but then she wasn't a Catholic.



It's not ironic - it's as wrong as most of the rest of what Higgsy writes. We don't need to suppress religion, we need merely to stop people forcing others to adopt their religious beliefs.
Putting my style to one side for a moment... You appear to acknowledge the need to stop religious brainwashing...hey! that's what I am saying.

My questions for you are how and why...?

This should be interesting because if you are honest you will find the real problems. Radical solutions may be required to stop a radical ideology based on myths, islam for example, taking over the world. Trouble is it's probably beyond the tipping point... Thanks to appathy, poor observation or a willful denial of the facts.
 
#16
When did you go from starting unfunny threads and talking shit to attempting cogent debate?
That's the NAAFI where one is expected to fish for bites and purposefully provoke grumpy old soldiers. Any non NAAFI related threads I reply with sincerity.

Well, that doesn't make that much sense as a sentence. And of course a document written in 1948 isn't mentioned in older books. And, frankly, the drafting committee weren't exactly selected for their rigorous atheism. Eleanor Roosevelt had problems with the Catholic Church, true - but then she wasn't a Catholic.
It's fairly clear, you suggested a hypothetical evil resulting from atheist thought without any evidence, to counter this I supplied a modern document outlining human equality which is the result of rational thought. Human Rights are an example of what can be achieved by enlightened debate without the curbing influence of religion.

Now in contrast look at religious forms of justice, how about Shari-ah Law for starters? See my point?



It's not ironic - it's as wrong as most of the rest of what Higgsy writes. We don't need to suppress religion, we need merely to stop people forcing others to adopt their religious beliefs.
In order for religion to survive the young must be indoctrinated into respective religions. Christianity uses clever ruses ranging from guilt trips, parental pressure and threats of eternal torture after death to ensure people stay with the flock. In the ME you won't get very far unless you submit to the prophet, at the least you'll be ostracised from society.

I think we may be in agreement that we should teach the young to think for themselves, that means teaching them things which we know to be true and things which we cannot prove.
 
#17
It doesn't need to be a big cliff, you know. Ten feet or so and you bleeding out from the shattered marrow in both tibias just above your ankles would be fine :)
Ten feet is nuthin...semi relaxed, elbows up, feet and knees tight together, side right! And landing on rocks from twenty grand at night with sixty kilos of kit is no sweat... a few fractures just makes me more determined... :)
 
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