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Metacrock vs Pixie

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  • Metacrock vs Pixie

    Resolved: that belief in God is rationally warranted. I do not intend to prove the existence of God. My purpose is to argue that there is rational warrant for belief but the actual proof is beyond human ability.


    I.Argument from Temporal Begining.


    A. loigc of the argument.

    1) Time has a begining.

    2) There is no causality or sequential order beyond time.

    3) Therefore, no change beyond time is possible.

    4) The putative state of affiars beyond time is one of timlessness.
    5) Therefore, time should never have come to be.

    6) We know that time did come to be, therefore, it must have been created by something capable of writing and circumventing the rules.

    7) Only God would be capable of writting and circumventing the rules of time and eternity, therefore, God must exit.




    II. Argument from Epistemic judgement.

    Grounded in epistemology. We can't solve the empiricists dilemma the best we can do is make a judgement we make such judgements all the time with the aid of a criteria of epistemic judgement.


    (1) No empirical evidence can prove the existence of the external world, other minds, or the reality of history, or other such basic things.

    (2) We do not find this epistemological dilemma debilitating on a daily basis because we assume that if our experiences are consistent and regular than we can navigate in "reality" whether it is ultimately illusory of not.

    (3) Consistency and regularity of personal experience is the key.

    (4) religious experience can also be regular and consistent, perhaps not to the same degree, but in the same way.

    (5) Inersubjective

    RE of this type has a commonality shared by bleievers all over the world, in different times and diffrent places, just as the exeternal world seems to be percieved the same by everyone.

    (6) Reala and Lasting effects.


    (7) therefore, we have as much justification for assuming religious belief based upon experince as for assuming the reality of the external world or the existence of other minds.


    See note on the Thomas Reid project and Reid himself end page 2

    *We assume reality by means of a Jugement

    *we make such jugements based upon certain criteria

    *Because RE fits the same criteria we are justfied in making the same assumption; ie that these experinces are idicative of a reality.
    Lord what fools these mortals be.
    Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

    President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

  • #2
    Thanks to Metacrock for setting up this debate. Let us get to it.

    ______________________________________________


    [SIZE=4]I. Argument from Temporal Beginning.[/SIZE]

    I - a. Introduction.

    1) Time has a begining.
    2) There is no causality or sequential order beyond time.
    3) Therefore, no change beyond time is possible.
    4) The putative state of affiars beyond time is one of timlessness.
    5) Therefore, time should never have come to be.
    6) We know that time did come to be, therefore, it must have been created by something capable of writing and circumventing the rules.
    7) Only God would be capable of writting and circumventing the rules of time and eternity, therefore, God must exit.
    1. How do we know time has a beginning? Science points to a Big Bang, but as yet we have no way of knowing what happened at that exact moment or before then. It may well be that time started then, but perhaps not. Perhaps the Big Bang occurred in some other set of dimensions, with something analogous to time. Sure, this is mere speculation, but the fact is that we do not know. Is ignorance a good rational warrant to believe in God?

    2. Metacrock claims there is no causality or sequence order beyond time. Einstein, on the other hand, says time and space are equivalent, so in fact you can have a sequence order in space - a fence, for instance, is a sequence order, with each panel repeating. Abstract sequences are possible too, for example 1, 4, 9, 16 is a sequence order.

    3. This then is all a very poor basis on which to claim no change beyond time is possible.

    Further, this is problem for the theism. If there really was no time before the universe was created, and no change was possible before the universe was created, then it would be impossible for God to decide to create the universe.

    4. Number four seems tautologically true - and unnecessary to the argument.

    5. The conclusion that time should never have come to be is as true for the theist as the atheist - or as false.


    I - b. God wrote the rule.

    Okay, so let us suppose time did come to exist, what can we conclude from that?

    So far I have only been nit-picking, now we come to the crux of it. This is where Metacrock loads in his conclusions with unwarranted assumptions. He claims the universe "must have been created by something capable of writing and circumventing the rules". What does that mean? What rule exactly? The only rule relevant here is point 5. Metacrock is postulating that God "wrote" the rule that "time should never have come to be".

    If Metacrock is right, then God decided that logically "time should never have come to be", and God could have decided to "write" the rule another way, in another (hypothetical) universe where Metacrock's logic would have turned out different.

    I think that that is nonsense.

    The fact that time exists shows that the claim "time should never have come to be" is false.

    I - c. God can do the logically impossible.

    An implication of Metacrocks argument is that God can do the logically impossible. Does that make sense?

    Can God create a stone so heavy he cannot lift it?

    Can God create the universe without himself existing?

    Can God create a round circle?

    Most theologians say that God, despite being omnipotent, cannot do the logically impossible, and here are a few links to support that asserton.

    This necessarily accepts the view that even an omnipotent God cannot violate the laws of logic, and indeed this whole paradox can be seen as a strong reason for such a view.
    http://www.greatplay.net/uselessia/a...pyparadox.html

    Finally, if God can do the logically impossible, he can bring it about that it is logically impossible for him to do the logically impossible.
    http://www.randyeverist.com/2011/02/...mpossible.html

    What the critics are asking is that God become self-contradictory as a proof He doesn't exist. Their assertion is illogical from the start. What they are doing is trying to get God to be illogical.
    http://carm.org/questions/about-god/...e-cant-pick-it

    Omnipotence, it is suggested, is the ability to bring about any logically possible state of affairs.
    http://www.philosophyofreligion.info...ossible-rocks/

    I - d. Only God can break the rule.

    I think the conclusion to now is that this is not a rule so much as a guideline. Certainly things in our experience cannot break the guideline, but the fact that time exists means something can and has.

    What this all comes down to is an argument from ignorance or god-of-the-gaps argument. The fact is that we do not know how the universe/time started. It might have been God, it might not. We do not know and at the moment we have no way to know. There is nothing to suggest it was an intelligent agency, let alone anything to suggest it was an intelligent agency that takes an interest in human affairs.


    ______________________________________________


    [SIZE=4]II. Argument from Epistemic judgement.[/SIZE]

    II - a. Introduction.


    The basic argument here is that people have mystical experiences, and as those experiences are (1) consistent and have real and lasting effects, and (2) often believed to be religious then God probably exists.

    II - b. Consistency.

    We believe the external world exists because of consistency. I can put a pen in a draw, close the draw and then open it again, and the pen is still there. The chair I sit on will support me, and is the same shape and colour that it was yesturday.

    This consistency leads to the methodology of science. I can predict that the pen will still be there, and test that predict by opening the drawer. I can predict what shape and colour my chair will be tomorrow, and I can test that prediction.

    The thing about consistency is it leads to a predictable world where things happen as we expect - so much so that we take them for granted. When was the last time you wondered in the road would support your weight?

    Metacrock would have us believe that mystical experiences are comparable (though he admits not as good). I invite him to make that case.

    II - c. Just Chemicals.

    Do we have any reason to postulate God as the source of these mystical experiences? I grant that it is possible, but it is also possible that they are the result of things happening in the brain - natural not supernatural.

    Here are three representive articles that show that so-called mysical experiences can be triggered artificially:

    The human brain does not contain a single "God spot" responsible for mystical and religious experiences, a new study finds.
    Instead, the sense of union with God or something greater than the self often described by those who have undergone such experiences involves the recruitment and activation of a variety brain regions normally implicated in different functions such as self-consciousness, emotion and body representation.
    http://www.livescience.com/7116-god-...man-brain.html

    The fundamental revelations to the founders of the three monotheistic religions, among many other revelation experiences, had occurred on a mountain. These three revelation experiences share many phenomenological components like feeling and hearing a presence, seeing a figure, seeing lights, and feeling of fear. In addition, similar experiences have been reported by non-mystic contemporary mountaineers. The similarities between these revelations on mountains and their appearance in contemporary mountaineers suggest that exposure to altitude might affect functional and neural mechanisms, thus facilitating the experience of a revelation.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16054773

    The connection between the temporal lobes of the brain and religious feeling has led one Canadian scientist to try stimulating them. (They are near your ears.) 80% of Dr Michael Persinger's experimental subjects report that an artificial magnetic field focused on those brain areas gives them a feeling of 'not being alone'. Some of them describe it as a religious sensation.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/horizon...donbrain.shtml

    Drugs, too, can be used to trigger mystical experiences:

    Although drug induced mystical experiences may be different than nondrug generated ones their effect none-the-less is close to the genuine and is long term. Doblin (1991) reported on a long term follow-up of the "Good Friday" experiment (Pahnke, 1963) where subjects were given a placebo or psilocybin. At the 6 month and the 30 year follow-ups the drug groups scored higher in terms of eight dimensions of their experiences which echo the mystical literature. These were unity, transcendence of time and space, deeply felt positive mood, sacredness, objectivity and reality, paradoxicality, alleged ineffability and transiency. Additionally the drug group members reported significantly more persistent changes in attitudes and behaviors over the interim period as a result of the experience.
    http://www.sawka.com/spiritwatch/cehsc/ipure.htm

    This psilocybin-induced spirituality appears similar to that reported in case studies of individuals reporting spontaneous mystical experience.
    http://brainblogger.com/2012/02/27/d...al-experience/

    Brain damage also can lead to these types of experiences, and some famous visions have been so attributed:

    Professor Holmes is convinced that the blow to Ellen's head caused her to develop temporal lobe epilepsy.
    "Her whole clinical course to me suggested the high probability that she had temporal lobe epilepsy. This would indicate to me that the spiritual visions she was having would not be genuine, but would be due to the seizures."
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/2865009.stm

    Evidence is offered to suggest a neurological origin for Paul's ecstatic visions. Paul's physical state at the time of his conversion is discussed and related to these ecstatic experiences. It is postulated that both were manifestations of temporal lobe epilepsy.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1032067/

    II - d. Real and Lasting.

    Note that these artificially-induced experiences can have real and lasting effects, as some of the above studies make clear. Given that we know artificially-induced experiences can have real and lasting effects, it would clearly be fallacious to conclude God must be involved if a spontaneous experience also has real and lasting effects.

    II - e. Believed to be Religious.

    Part of Metacrock's argument is that because people think these experiences are from God, they probably are.

    The fact is that people associate an experience with the traditions of their culture - as Metacrock himself says on his web site:

    But what about the vast aray of different religions? These differences are due to cultural constructs. One experiences God beyond words, and when one tries to speak of such experiences one must encode them in a symbolic universe, that is to say, in culture. These differences in symbolic universes over time have spelled out the differences in the many religions. But there is a ****** unity even between all the differences in religion. The data presented above on long term effects represents typologies which can be used to compare "peak experience" with that of other phenomena. The Peak experiencers can be grouped together into a collection of those who have experiences X. They are not isolated assortments of differing phenomena. These studies do represent differing cultures and times. Thus, religious experience has a consistency to it even between cultures.

    People have mystical experiences that are outside their common experiences, and try to understand them as best they can. A Christian understands them to be sent from the Christian God, but a Buddist would disagree. Who is right? As a Christian, Metacrock makes the assumption that Christians must be right.

    II - f. Distribution of Mysical Experiences.

    My position is that these mysical experiences are triggered by natural events, such as a certain chemical in the brain. Metacrock holds that they come from God. Let us think about that. What is God's purpose here?

    Is God trying to convetrt people to Christianity? Is there any evidence that a Hindu or Buddist who has had a mystical experience has consequently given up his faith and converted to Christianity? Sure, some non-Christians are converted, but only those raised in a Christian culture. What exactly is God's success rate?

    In fact, is there anything to suggest purpose in these experiences, or are they random? I invite Metacrock to show that God has some purpose that is reflected in who and when these experiences occur.

    Comment


    • #3
      My 2AC (part 1)



      I. Argument from Temporal Beginning.

      I - a. Introduction.

      1) Time has a begining.

      2) There is no causality or sequential order beyond time.

      3) Therefore, no change beyond time is possible.

      4) The putative state of affiars beyond time is one of timlessness.

      5) Therefore, time should never have come to be.

      6) We know that time did come to be, therefore, it must have been created by something capable of writing and circumventing the rules.

      7) Only God would be capable of writting and circumventing the rules of time and eternity, therefore, God must exit.
      a summary of my argument.

      He begins his actual argument:

      How do we know time has a beginning? Science points to a Big Bang, but as yet we have no way of knowing what happened at that exact moment or before then. It may well be that time started then, but perhaps not. Perhaps the Big Bang occurred in some other set of dimensions, with something analogous to time. Sure, this is mere speculation, but the fact is that we do not know. Is ignorance a good rational warrant to believe in God?
      I don't know where he gets that idea but that's not what scientists I read say. They seem to assume the Big Bang is begining of time and we don't know what if anything stands beyond it (I don't 'before" becasue there's no before before time).


      2. Metacrock claims there is no causality or sequence order beyond time. Einstein, on the other hand, says time and space are equivalent, so in fact you can have a sequence order in space - a fence, for instance, is a sequence order, with each panel repeating. Abstract sequences are possible too, for example 1, 4, 9, 16 is a sequence order.
      He misconstrues what Einstein meant. Time and space being equivalent doesn’t mean there is no problem temporal beginning nor does it mean that there is sequential order or becoming in a timeless void. It does mean we can speak of “before” BB as “beyond event horizon.” That’s not the same as cause and effect in a timeless state. I appeal to Odenwalk, NASSA phyisicist who says as much.

      (1)Physical laws operate in time exactly then the subsequent motion will be completely predictable. http://www.damtp.cam.ac.uk/user/gr/public/qg_qc.html Cambridge “Relativity and Quantum Gravity. 1996, University of Cambridge The physical laws that govern the universe prescribe how an initial state evolves with time. In classical physics, if the initial state of a system is specified exactly then the subsequent motion will be completely predictable.

      *t=0 is a timeless state

      Sten Odewald, Astronomy Café 2004.

      “Our best guess at this time suggest that time and space as we know these concepts will become rather meaningless as the universe enters a purely quantum mechanical state of indeterminacy. Cosmologists such as Stephen Hawking suggest that the dimension of time is transformed via quantum fluctuations in the so-called "signature of the spacetime metric", into a space-like coordinate so that instead of 3-space and 1-time dimension, space-time becomes a 4-dimensional space devoid of any time-like features

      (2)Many of the atheists on the board say they don’t believe in a timeless void, well Stephen Hawking does.

      "As we shall see, the concept of time has no meaning before the beginning of the universe. This was first pointed out by St. Augustine. When asked: What did God do before he created the universe? Augustine didn't reply: He was preparing Hell for people who asked such questions. Instead, he said that time was a property of the universe that God created, and that time did not exist before the beginning of the universe. (Stephen Hawking, A Brief History of Time (New York: Bantam, 1988),

      p. 8
      ) physical laws only work in time but the BB begins in a timeless state.

      Odenwald's theoretical article on susy guts argues that there is NO action of becoming in state beyond Big Bang ("before" the Big Bang).

      stepn Oldenwald Astronomy May 87

      Copyright (C) 1987, Kalmbach Publishing. Reprinted by permission

      http://www.astronomycafe.net/anthol/beyondbb.html

      “In such a world, nothing happens because all 'happenings' take place within the reference frame of time and space. The presence of a single particle in this nothingness would have instantaneously broken the perfect symmetry of this era because there would then have been a favored point in space different from all others; the point occupied by the particle. This nothingness didn't evolve either, because evolution is a time-ordered process. The introduction of time as a favored coordinate would have broken the symmetry too. It would seem that the 'Trans-Creation' state is beyond conventional description because any words we may choose to describe it are inherently laced with the conceptual baggage of time and space.”

      (3)Atheists are stuck with defending a timeless void as the state of origin.

      (1) in my view whatever is eternal is basically participating in the attirbutes of the divine. God is eternal, which I link being necesasry, thus no origin, that's what it would mean to be eternal. Thus eternal can't be a beginning state for naturalistic universe because it a prori part and parcel of the divine.

      (2) Naturalistic origin can't be ICR because I feel that ICR is illogical for numerous reasons.

      (a) keeps handing the problem off and putting it back but never solves it, we never get to an origin.

      (b) Contingency can't be the ultimate answer because contingent means dependent upon something (at least in the case of the way I'm using it, cosmological contingency). Contingnecy can never be ultimate stoppoing point for an answer. In other words we need a final cause.

      (3) That leaves popping into existence out of nothing. nothing is a timeless void. time is something therefore to have a state of true absolute nothing you have no time. thus timeless void.

      (4) The idea that the universe was just always here with no origin. One version of that is steady state. Odenwald's answer to steady state:


      astronomy cafe, 2004

      http://www.astronomycafe.net/qadir/q2561.html


      "Developed by Fred Hoyle and Thomas Gold, it proposes that the universe has been expanding for eternity and that new galaxies are created, atom by atom, in intergalactic space 'out of empty space'. This theory had its heyday in the 1950's and 1960's, but was never able to explain convincingly where the cosmic background radiation came from, why it is so isotropic, and why its temperature is fixed at 2.7 K. It also provided no clues as to why there ought to be a universal abundance ratio for hydrogen, helium and deuterium."

      On that same page through every theory and shows it's problems, showing that Big Bang standard is the only one that holds up and has empirical evidence to support it.

      Astronomy Cafe 2004.

      "So there you have it. This is not a game of billiards where the cue ball ( data) is carefully lined up so that Big Bang theory comes out looking inevitable. Any of these other theories have been repeatedly invited to take their best shot too, and the results are always the same. The proponents have to intervene to even get their theories to pony up a simple prediction for any of these cosmological data."

      That leaves us with a naturalistic answer must assume something from noting and that implies a timeless void. They can say "I don't believe in a timeless void" but all indications point to it. If there is a multiverse then it is made up of multiple space/time envelopes marked by their big bangs and the background around those envelopes is the timeless void.



      [quote]3. This then is all a very poor basis on which to claim no change beyond time is possible.[/qouote]

      I just documented that it's based upon the latest work of physicists and it's line with the standard theory.

      Further, this is problem for the theism. If there really was no time before the universe was created, and no change was possible before the universe was created, then it would be impossible for God to decide to create the universe.
      wrong! here's where not knowing theology hurts: we exist in God's mind. We are not independent huncks of matter. we are fragments of thought in a mind. That means all God has to do is think about us. God isn't subject to the problems of time and non-time that's just the result of the conventional point of reference (time) that he created for us, so we can have our bearings. It has no more effect upon God than day dream has on us. That's way God is the only logical solution to the problem of temporal beginning. Only the author of the rules can re-write them and not be subject to them.

      4. Number four seems tautologically true - and unnecessary to the argument.
      My friends that is a true sign that my worthy opponent really doesn't understand the issues. 3 says no change beyond time is possible, 5 says no time should have come to be, 4 says beyond the big bang is a timeless void, obviously that's the logical point to put between those two. otherwise the timelessness is not connected to the universe and makes no difference. Plug 4 and we are saying the necessary part to show that time should never come into being.

      how could that possibly be construed as tautological? After all there's no pre set understanding that beyond the Big Bang has to be a timeless void, if I left that open he would be saying my argument is incomplete.
      Lord what fools these mortals be.
      Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

      President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

      Comment


      • #4
        2AC (part [SIZE=3]2[/SIZE])

        5. The conclusion that time should never have come to be is as true for the theist as the atheist - or as false.
        Yes, except for the basic concept of God. Once we understand what ground of being means we can see that we can see no reason for ground of being to be subject to the rules of creation that are set by the ground itself ("himself").

        I - b. God wrote the rule.

        Okay, so let us suppose time did come to exist, what can we conclude from that?
        that it logically violates the laws of nature.

        So far I have only been nit-picking, now we come to the crux of it. This is where Metacrock loads in his conclusions with unwarranted assumptions. He claims the universe "must have been created by something capable of writing and circumventing the rules". What does that mean? What rule exactly? The only rule relevant here is point 5. Metacrock is postulating that God "wrote" the rule that "time should never have come to be".
        Obvious we can assume there's a rule that "says" (or whatever it does, means) there can be no change in a timeless void. He wants to pretend that my assert of God is begging the question. It's not becuase no other alternative will suit. anything naturalistic (that's all he can assert--a an atheist he has o stick to naturalism) anything naturalistic will be a violation of the nature law. If natural law says "no time = no change" there can't be a nauturlsitic casue for change.

        If Metacrock is right, then God decided that logically "time should never have come to be", and God could have decided to "write" the rule another way, in another (hypothetical) universe where Metacrock's logic would have turned out different.
        He decided it would not come to be naturalistic ally, or rather he decided he would change the rule. Or it may actually be that talk of rules change is metaphorical what he really did was to just introduce a point of will into a naturalistic scheme. doesn't matter how you look at it the point is that the change could not come about naturalistic ally becuase conditons would never warrant change since the conditions can be summed up as saying no time = no change.

        The fact that time exists shows that the claim "time should never have come to be" is false.
        that obviously doesn't' follow. That implies that there is no logical problem and obviously there is. When every physicists says "no time = no change," he can't show me one that says otherwise. from J. T. Fraser's Time the Familiar Stranger

        http://www.amazon.com/Time-The-Famil...iliar+stranger

        to Hawking's Brief history of Time (already quoted), they all say it.

        I - c. God can do the logically impossible.

        An implication of Metacrocks argument is that God can do the logically impossible. Does that make sense?
        No its not. that's a red herring. Just there to throw us off the scent. It may be that he considers this impossible logically he has proof that it would be impossible to a center of will that can create all that is. He's assuming the laws of phsyics are logic, and they are not. Laws of physics are not the laws of logic and they are not logical. violating laws of physics is not a violation of logical laws.

        what exactly does he think is impossible?

        Can God create a stone so heavy he cannot lift it?

        Can God create the universe without himself existing?

        Can God create a round circle?

        Most theologians say that God, despite being omnipotent, cannot do the logically impossible, and here are a few links to support that asserton.

        This necessarily accepts the view that even an omnipotent God cannot violate the laws of logic, and indeed this whole paradox can be seen as a strong reason for such a view.

        http://www.greatplay.net/uselessia/a...pyparadox.html

        Finally, if God can do the logically impossible, he can bring it about that it is logically impossible for him to do the logically impossible.

        http://www.randyeverist.com/2011/02/...mpossible.html

        What the critics are asking is that God become self-contradictory as a proof He doesn't exist. Their assertion is illogical from the start. What they are doing is trying to get God to be illogical.

        http://carm.org/questions/about-god/...e-cant-pick-it

        Omnipotence, it is suggested, is the ability to bring about any logically possible state of affairs.

        http://www.philosophyofreligion.info...ossible-rocks/

        I - d. Only God can break the rule.
        Up to this point he is assuming that changing the rule is a violation of the rule and he equates the rule (no time = no change) with the rules of logic. that is fallacious. laws of phsyics are not synonymous with laws of logic. In my view laws of logic are merely the way the relationship bewteen concepts stacks up. Rules of phsyics are the way the universe behaves. One is not necessarily the same as the other.

        the quotes from these so called theologians don't apply to my specific argument, they don't know about me. I am not obligated to agree with CARM. the proposal of my argument is not analogous to making a rock so big he can't lift it.

        those are not the same thing.



        I think the conclusion to now is that this is not a rule so much as a guideline. Certainly things in our experience cannot break the guideline, but the fact that time exists means something can and has.

        What this all comes down to is an argument from ignorance or god-of-the-gaps argument. The fact is that we do not know how the universe/time started. It might have been God, it might not. We do not know and at the moment we have no way to know. There is nothing to suggest it was an intelligent agency, let alone anything to suggest it was an intelligent agency that takes an interest in human affairs.
        (1) All attempts at answering questions are based upon putting something in the gap of ignorance. So all answers are evocations of the gap thus one can take gapism too far and wind up saying that all arguments are gap fillers.

        (2) Obviously there seems to be a barrier of logic or physical law to change in a timeless void. Somehow the universe doesn't cooperate with that idea. Yet he's right he's right in that it must have at one time.

        (3) one of us is begging the question, clearly something did change things. It works either way to say "he is begging the question. my solution is the logical one." The real dividing line is his solutions by defintino has to be based upon naturslism. that means to work they must abide by natural law. Yet it's natural that's foribidding them. So he has no no solution, but he wants you to place blind faith in scinece and pretend there is one.

        (4) So believe in God now. maybe science will disprove it down the road and you can be an atheist then. there is still reason to believe in God now because there's no answer to this and faith is for suckers remember? As long he wants you to step out of faith shouldn't step out on real faith and not hypocritical faith? Atheist faith in scinece is hypocritical given that they are always saying faith is for suckers.
        Lord what fools these mortals be.
        Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

        President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

        Comment


        • #5
          2AC (part[SIZE=3] 3[/SIZE])

          Now we come to the second argument.

          ______________________________________________

          II. Argument from Epistemic judgement.

          II - a. Introduction.

          The basic argument here is that people have mystical experiences, and as those experiences are (1) consistent and have real and lasting effects, and (2) often believed to be religious then God probably exists.
          His summary is ok but he misses the crucial point: the criteria we use to determine the reality of our experiences is the basis for epistemic judgement. Religious experience fits that criteria: that is what is regular, consistent, shared and navigational. Thus becuase it fits the criteria we use to determine reality we should accept it as real.

          II - b. Consistency.

          We believe the external world exists because of consistency. I can put a pen in a draw, close the draw and then open it again, and the pen is still there. The chair I sit on will support me, and is the same shape and colour that it was yesturday.

          This consistency leads to the methodology of science. I can predict that the pen will still be there, and test that predict by opening the drawer. I can predict what shape and colour my chair will be tomorrow, and I can test that prediction.

          The thing about consistency is it leads to a predictable world where things happen as we expect - so much so that we take them for granted. When was the last time you wondered in the road would support your weight?

          Metacrock would have us believe that mystical experiences are comparable (though he admits not as good). I invite him to make that case.
          That's a pretty good summary of things I've said in the past. He's been reading my stuff, it's about time someone did (LOL). ;-) Constancy is clearly one of the criteria.If we see something familiar we don't see to check the reality of it. It's we see something never seen before we seek to check. We do that in several ways one is to say "did you see that?" That's the shard aspect. It's not just "shared" but inter-subjective. That's what I mean by shared. We don't share the same experience of God's presence but it's inter-subjective in that we have similar subjective experiences that more than one person has.

          a huge number of studies prove that this is so of RE (religious experience--I'll call religious experience "RE" to make it easier).

          First Gackenback quotes David Luckoff in discussing commonalites of RE.

          "Lukoff (1985) identified five common characteristics of mystical experiences which could be operationalized for assessment purposes. They are:

          1. Ecstatic mood, which he identified as the most common feature;

          2. Sense of newly gained knowledge, which includes a belief that the mysteries of life have been revealed;

          3. Perceptual alterations, which range from "heightened sensations to auditory and visual hallucinations (p. 167)";

          4. Delusions (if present) have themes related to mythology, which includes an incredible range diversity and range;

          5. No conceptual disorganization, unlike psychotic persons those with mystical experiences do NOT suffer from disturbances in language and speech.

          It can be seen from the explanation of PC earlier that this list of qualities overlaps in part those delineated by Alexander et al."

          This telling us that mystics the world over have similar experiences. Hood get's even more specific. He does what Lukoff didn't do, no one else has done, he took off the names and the doctrines form the answers given to the studies and looked at the experiences themselves. He found they describes the same things in terms of sensations and presence, experiences, ect. The mystics of different faiths explain their experiences by their own faiths, the experiences themselves are all the same. That's a good indication they are experiencing something objective that is outside themselves. It's also evidence that they are having the same experinces, which means they at least have the shared part in common, if not the others.

          the evidence documenting this point is from Hood's artilce in the McNamara book

          P, McNamar (Ed.), Where God and science meet, Vol. 3, pp. 119-138. Westport, CT: Praeger.

          http://books.google.com.cu/books?id=...;q&f=false

          II - c. Just Chemicals.

          Do we have any reason to postulate God as the source of these mystical experiences? I grant that it is possible, but it is also possible that they are the result of things happening in the brain - natural not supernatural.
          yes we sure do, first because we can eliminate each of the alternative causalities brought up merely to obfuscate belief in God. Secondly, becuase historically the coloration bewteen God and these experiences goes all the way back as far as we can stud it. Many anthropologists, theologians and other expositors think that religion is based upon mystical experience and it stands at the core of organized religion. Gackenback quotes Horne and others: "The experience of pure consciousness is typically called "mystical". The essence of the mystical experience has been debated for years (Horne, 1982). It is often held that "mysticism is a manifestation of something which is at the root of all religions (p. 16; Happold, 1963)." The empirical assessment of the mystical experience in psychology has occurred to a limited extent.Thomas Idinopulos,.”What is Religion” Cross Currents, Volume 48, no. 3(Fall 1998). Also see online URL: http://www.crosscurrents.org/whatisreligion.htm visited 10/28/10, he quotes Huston Smith as another who thinks this. (another Methodist, a major scholar of religious studies).

          Here are three representive articles that show that so-called mysical experiences can be triggered artificially:
          sorry these articles really are pretty worthless.

          The human brain does not contain a single "God spot" responsible for mystical and religious experiences, a new study finds.

          Instead, the sense of union with God or something greater than the self often described by those who have undergone such experiences involves the recruitment and activation of a variety brain regions normally implicated in different functions such as self-consciousness, emotion and body representation.

          http://www.livescience.com/7116-god-...man-brain.html
          that is irrelevant to my argument here. He's wisely trying to spike another arguemnt he knows I make but I actually agree with him. My other argument is not dependent upon there being one center of God receptors in the brain, a multiplicity will do. But moreover, this is a different argument it has nothing to do withe one being considered now.

          The fundamental revelations to the founders of the three monotheistic religions, among many other revelation experiences, had occurred on a mountain. These three revelation experiences share many phenomenological components like feeling and hearing a presence, seeing a figure, seeing lights, and feeling of fear. In addition, similar experiences have been reported by non-mystic contemporary mountaineers. The similarities between these revelations on mountains and their appearance in contemporary mountaineers suggest that exposure to altitude might affect functional and neural mechanisms, thus facilitating the experience of a revelation.

          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16054773
          that is truly an odd argument. He can't prove that any major incident relational to any major religion or religious experiences is any more connected with a mountain than with a valley. None of the mountain top experiences depicted of Christ in the Gosples were foundational for the faith. Sermon on the mount was teaching already given not an experience Jesus had then, and it's the sermon n the plane in Luke. We don't know enough about the historical incidents of Jesus life to make that claim.

          The connection between the temporal lobes of the brain and religious feeling has led one Canadian scientist to try stimulating them. (They are near your ears.) 80% of Dr Michael Persinger's experimental subjects report that an artificial magnetic field focused on those brain areas gives them a feeling of 'not being alone'. Some of them describe it as a religious sensation.

          http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/horizon...donbrain.shtml
          the late John Hick, one of the great philosophers of religion in the last century, wrote a book,

          , The New Frontier of Religion and Science: Religious Experience, Neuroscience and The Transcendent. Playgrave:Macmillion, 2006, he dealt with these kinds of researchers and this one in particular (62-66). He shows that they do not use the M scale or any other form of measurement to assure that they have produced RE. The draw that conclusion based upon the subjective ideas of the observer. For example one says "I had a dream about Jesus" he concludes "O you see I produced 'RE'" but that is not proof. Unless we have a standard to compare to we don't know what RE is. The m scale is the best validated standard there is. More validating studies support it than any other. These guys use no such scale. Hood is taking the individual subject's word for what they experienced but because he has a standard to compare it to he knows if the experiences stack up to RE or not. Since they have consistently done so in half a dozen different countries around the world, we know they do stack up and we know the standard is valid as per what people experience.


          Everyone might not dream about Jesus if you jog their dendrites, but we know form the M scale that people all over the world a certain percentage will experience an certain that corresponds to Stace's theory.
          Lord what fools these mortals be.
          Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

          President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

          Comment


          • #6
            2AC ([SIZE=4]part 4[/SIZE])

            Drugs, too, can be used to trigger mystical experiences:

            Although drug induced mystical experiences may be different than nondrug generated ones their effect none-the-less is close to the genuine and is long term.
            that's the guy who did the good friday follow up. I've read both studies. Notice something about that first line? He starts out admitting drug induced is different from non drug induced. That's because they are not synonymous. Drugs don't just copy but there is a good reason to assume they are similar. please follow three lines of analysis:

            (1) The mere presence of naturalistic chemicals in the brain or the association of brain structure with experiences of the divine is not proof that the experience as a whole can be reduced to purely naturalistic phenomena.

            (2) God made us to be flesh and blood creatures and gave us a brain structure with brain chemistry is not amazing to think that if he communicates then he must do so through our chemical processes and brain structures. So we can assume that it may just be that some naturalistic process opens the receptors. The fact that drug induced and non drug induced RE are different might indicate this, one is with God and one without God. Or God with a drug.

            (3) At this point it's a tie in our assumption, neither assumption (God vs brain chemistry) is better, but they don't cancel each other out becuase there are tie breakers. I have many tie breakers I'll mention a couple:

            (a) It's all consistently good. If it was just misfire or just some kind of effect of drugs we should expect to find bad mystical experiences. the experiences that are negative are not connected to the mystical experience per se. One of the major negatives Spaonos and Moretti discuss is out of body but that doesn't even quality as mystical in Stace's view becasue it's not beyond word thought or image. RE is consistently positive, transformational and good for you, and lasts a life time. The bad stuff is usually sort therm.

            (b) why is it not connected to degenerative processes? one would expect if it is just a coincidence or a naturalistic (therefore random) process then it should hit bad as often as it does good. Moreover it should be related tot he degenerative process of mental illness or drug addiction or something but it's not. It's related to things that make us better over time. There's a huge body of studies that prove this point.

            (c) It's what we should expect if religious belief is true. We should expect the experience of God to have a lasting positive effect and make our lives better and it's true that it dose this. Summarizing two of the major early studies. Wuthnow and Nobel these are the outcomes:

            http://csp.org/experience/docs/uniti...ciousness.html

            Long-Term Effects

            Wuthnow:

            *Say their lives are more meaningful,

            *think about meaning and purpose

            *Know what purpose of life is

            Meditate more

            *Score higher on self-rated personal talents and capabilities

            *Less likely to value material possessions, high pay, job security, fame, and having lots of friends

            *Greater value on work for social change, solving social problems, helping needy

            *Reflective, inner-directed, self-aware, self-confident life style

            Noble:

            *Experience more productive of psychological health than illness

            *Less authoritarian and dogmatic

            *More assertive, imaginative, self-sufficient

            *intelligent, relaxed

            *High ego strength,

            *relationships, symbolization, values,

            *integration, allocentrism,

            *psychological maturity,

            *self-acceptance, self-worth,

            *autonomy, authenticity, need for solitude,

            *increased love and compassion

            Short-Term Effects (usually people who did not previously know of these experiences)

            *Experience temporarily disorienting, alarming, disruptive

            *Likely changes in self and the world,

            *space and time, emotional attitudes, cognitive styles, personalities, doubt sanity and reluctance to communicate, feel ordinary language is inadequate

            *Some individuals report psychic capacities and visionary experience destabilizing relationships with family and friends Withdrawal, isolation, confusion, insecurity, self-doubt, depression, anxiety, panic, restlessness, grandiose religious delusions

            we can see the negatives in that list are in the short term group. So the good positive and religious nature of the experiences indicate a fix, not just a random element. Not what we would expect if it were naturalistic it's what we would expect if it was related to God.

            Pixie goes on Talking about the Goodfriday follow up.

            Doblin (1991) reported on a long term follow-up of the "Good Friday" experiment (Pahnke, 1963) where subjects were given a placebo or psilocybin. At the 6 month and the 30 year follow-ups the drug groups scored higher in terms of eight dimensions of their experiences which echo the mystical literature. These were unity, transcendence of time and space, deeply felt positive mood, sacredness, objectivity and reality, paradoxicality, alleged ineffability and transiency. Additionally the drug group members reported significantly more persistent changes in attitudes and behaviors over the interim period as a result of the experience.

            http://www.sawka.com/spiritwatch/cehsc/ipure.htm

            This psilocybin-induced spirituality appears similar to that reported in case studies of individuals reporting spontaneous mystical experience.

            http://brainblogger.com/2012/02/27/d...al-experience/
            In the original "Good friday experiment," aka "the marsh chapel experiment" by Walter N. Pahnke he used people who had all had mystical experiences in their youths. Everyone of them had. you can see this in Doblin's commentary on the original. That means his data was contaminated. The possibility that the drugs triggered old experiences and they were er living them is very real. there's no way to separate was it one or the other, the drug or the memory. Doblin's follow up did not use new people. He just interviewed the old people form the original group. He found the drug group had vivid memories and they were they one's who lived it, they became hippies, protestors, spend their lives crusading for social justice. The non drug guys thought it was nice but they didn't think much of it after all these years. If you think about it that doesn't prove it wasn't brought on by God. It was could have been a re-living of a childhood experience of God and the drugs just made it more vivid so they remembered is more important.Moreover if my receptors argument (which is from Hood) is right then the drugs open the receptors more. you get more contact with God. I know that's going to sound funny but that's like saying if you eat better food you have a stronger brain and you can think about God more.

            Brain damage also can lead to these types of experiences, and some famous visions have been so attributed:

            Professor Holmes is convinced that the blow to Ellen's head caused her to develop temporal lobe epilepsy.

            "Her whole clinical course to me suggested the high probability that she had temporal lobe epilepsy. This would indicate to me that the spiritual visions she was having would not be genuine, but would be due to the seizures."

            http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/2865009.stm
            (1) this is about a woman who had some wild ideas about giving birth to Jesus and that's supposed to make it religious experience. they didn't' use a standardized scale such as the M scale so there's no to say that what she got was RE, but come on, giving birth to Jesus? Not exactly the born again experience I had.we are talking about kinds of experiences that don't fit the issues that relate to my argument.

            (2) He refers to "famous visions" Stace says RE is beyond word, thought or image. So visions are not part of it. While many mystics have them and they can accompany RE they are not part of it in the Stace sense and thus they are not related to my argument. So this whole reasoning of attack is irrelevant.

            may sound arbitrary but it's not. Stace based his theory upon the writings of mystics around the world, all he could find, they all disparage visions. they were all up about the experiences that were beyond visions and beyond any image.
            Lord what fools these mortals be.
            Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

            President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

            Comment


            • #7
              2AC (part 5)

              Evidence is offered to suggest a neurological origin for Paul's ecstatic visions. Paul's physical state at the time of his conversion is discussed and related to these ecstatic experiences. It is postulated that both were manifestations of temporal lobe epilepsy.

              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1032067/
              Paul's experince was a vision with a voice that is not beyond word, thought or image. I'm sure he was a top flight mystic but this experience itself is not mystical. So that doesn't pertain to my argument.

              II - d. Real and Lasting.

              Note that these artificially-induced experiences can have real and lasting effects, as some of the above studies make clear.Given that we know artificially-induced experiences can have real and lasting effects, it would clearly be fallacious to conclude God must be involved if a spontaneous experience also has real and lasting effects.
              actually in reading those I don't find any that it says lasted. They are not longitudinal so we don't know if they lasted a life time. Maslow followed his guys for 20 years. Moreover, he has to be more specific about what lasted and what didn't. In fact none of the things in any of those articles were subjected to any standard of measurement such as the M scale so we don't know if they qualify as mystical or not. We know many of them don't fit Stace.

              I'm also dubious of "lasting" as an argument. debilitating events can last a life time that doesn't make them mystical. I'm not sure what lasting has to do with it in this case. I show that the negative effects are not lasing that makes a difference because we would expect God not to inflict life long disadvantages just to give us some advantage but a minor short term problem would be acceptable. But then to use lasting as a criteria for origin is not valid.

              II - e. Believed to be Religious.

              Part of Metacrock's argument is that because people think these experiences are from God, they probably are.

              The fact is that people associate an experience with the traditions of their culture - as Metacrock himself says on his web site:
              that's a problem. It might require more thought than a debate venue allows. but that also works aginst him as well against me. Becuase i don't see how this is a cogent attack on my argument. Yes I can se how asking "how do we know this is RE" is a valid point. Just there's a dilemma between experience vs tradition is not necessarly an arugment.

              But what about the vast aray of different religions? These differences are due to cultural constructs. One experiences God beyond words, and when one tries to speak of such experiences one must encode them in a symbolic universe, that is to say, in culture. These differences in symbolic universes over time have spelled out the differences in the many religions. But there is a ****** unity even between all the differences in religion. The data presented above on long term effects represents typologies which can be used to compare "peak experience" with that of other phenomena. The Peak experiencers can be grouped together into a collection of those who have experiences X. They are not isolated assortments of differing phenomena. These studies do represent differing cultures and times. Thus, religious experience has a consistency to it even between cultures.

              People have mystical experiences that are outside their common experiences, and try to understand them as best they can. A Christian understands them to be sent from the Christian God, but a Buddist would disagree. Who is right? As a Christian, Metacrock makes the assumption that Christians must be right.
              That's an argument against my view? I would say that helps me as much as anything argument I made. It's a good point, for me. It suggests the universality argument, they are experiencing the same things and thus objective reality. I will ad to this that RE is often contradictory to people cherished doctrines so they are not evoking their own expectations.

              II - f. Distribution of Mysical Experiences.

              My position is that these mysical experiences are triggered by natural events, such as a certain chemical in the brain. Metacrock holds that they come from God. Let us think about that. What is God's purpose here?
              He had a problem in that there's a distinction between cause and trigger. The trigger makes the gun fire but the shooter loads the gun, and the factor makes the bullets. Therefore the trigger is not the cause. Triggers are many, classic music is a trigger, looking at clouded, taking drugs, chruch service can be a trigger. there's a list I've seen ranking them in order of improtance prayer is no 1 and classical music is like no 5.

              Is God trying to convetrt people to Christianity? Is there any evidence that a Hindu or Buddist who has had a mystical experience has consequently given up his faith and converted to Christianity? Sure, some non-Christians are converted, but only those raised in a Christian culture. What exactly is God's success rate?
              now he's playing God, he's doing the atheist second guess God thing. that comes form thinking of God as a big man in the sky. That's theology, we are not debating theology. spare me your misconceptions about the nature of god. We can debate theology latter.

              In terms of the assumption that if Christianity were true then Buddhists who have mystical experience would give up Buddhism is a false assumption. It assumes a certain understanding of the way God is the simple big man in the sky kind of God who just cares about club membership rather than knowing people. My concept is that God is much more sophisticated. While yes he is drawing all people Christ he's not shallow enough to just tally that by club membership.

              In fact, is there anything to suggest purpose in these experiences, or are they random? I invite Metacrock to show that God has some purpose that is reflected in who and when these experiences occur.
              we have clearly illustrated the purpose several times. the purpose is to bring people to an intimate knowledge of God, not merely membership in a club, but knowledge of God at the whispering in your ear level. It's a knowing in the sense that you know your father when you picks you p out of the cradle. No better proof than the lives of the mystics. Those who had strong experiences of this nature all became missionaries, theologians, nuns, priests, big spiritual types. If they did not become Christians (they didn't join the club) they did follow God in that they became devoted to the path they understood best. Paul didn't tell hte Athenians, "you guys don't know god at all, you are going to hell and you are so off base, destroy these idols and start with the one to the unknown God,"

              What did he say? He said "You already know him. But you don't know don't know him well enough."

              Even atheists who have had these kinds of experiences think they have found the meaning of life and set about living in such a way that enables them to explore it more. We can see that in Maslow's book on Peak experiences (he was an atheist), and there is a book Newberg talks about by an atheist.

              Some people have such issues with the concept of God and with churches they don't want any part of standard religion but they have experiences and they can't deny they have been given a look around the corner and they are not goign to just forget it.

              Mystical experience is associated with mystics and saints, it is assumed that one must be very powerfully spiritual to have this. If you listen to the people who have it they don't say "Yes I am a spiritual genius." they say "I didn't do anything to earn this, God just laid it on me." That's the thing. It's not a sign that one is ST. John of the Cross and you have arrived. It's not some ookie spooky thing that is only SN. It's natural. It works through the natural process of brain chemistry. It's sort of a "cheat" in the sense that one get's a look around the corner by an accident of brain chemistry. Yet that accident is set up by something more than just random chance. We all have it. and we can access it by seeking God. those of us who have these experiences are at different levels of understanding. So we still need to seek God. It's not that that we have arrived just that we have been given a glimpse into the larger world of reality.

              two things he doesn't answer: (1) the fact that these experiences fit the criteria we use to determine reality. so the pre given as rational and valid. we should trust and accept them. That is a priori reason to accept the rational nature of belief.

              (2) the universality argument indicates that there is an objective reality being experienced.
              Last edited by Metacrock; 01-18-14, 11:53 AM.
              Lord what fools these mortals be.
              Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

              President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

              Comment


              • #8
                [SIZE=4]0. Definitions.[/SIZE]

                We should have done this sooner, but to be clear that we are talking about the same thing, some definitions.

                0 - a. Universe.

                By universe, I mean a physical structure that started at the Big Bang, containing galaxies, stars, etc. It may be contained in some larger structure (eg the multiverse).

                0 - b. God.

                An intelligent agency, who created this universe and who takes an interest in human affairs.

                0 - c. Law of Nature.

                A law of nature determines how the universe works; the underlying rules that govern how stuff happens.

                0 - d. Law of Physics.

                The laws of physics are science's best guess at the laws of nature. They are models of the real laws, the laws of nature, and at least some are known to be wrong. Newton's laws are a good model, and relativity is a better one, better neither is perfect.

                Note that Metacrock uses law of physics to mean the underlying law of nature; sometimes it is important to differentiate between the two so I will continue to use these definitions.

                Comment


                • #9
                  [SIZE=4]I. Argument from Temporal Beginning.[/SIZE]

                  I - a. Introduction.

                  The issues in Metacrock's first few points are minor, but the point is that they are unproven. If any point is not proven, then the conclusion is not proven. Metacrock has set his sights lower, only aiming for rational warrant, but still, these things need to be shown to be consistently highly likely.
                  I don't know where he gets that idea but that's not what scientists I read say. They seem to assume the Big Bang is begining of time and we don't know what if anything stands beyond it (I don't 'before" becasue there's no before before time).
                  The issue is that we do not know. Some scientists see the Big Bang as the start of time, others do not:

                  http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/as...s/060629a.html
                  However, there are other theories about our universe that suggest that there was indeed a time before the initial "bang." Two of the most popular theories are pre-Big Bang theory (using string theory) and the Ekpyrotic scenario (using the collision of "D-branes"). In these theories, the pre-big bang universe was very sparse and weakly interacting, but did eventually give rise to a sudden transition that is similar to our "big bang."
                  He misconstrues what Einstein meant. ...
                  Let us keep in mind this relates to the claim "There is no causality or sequential order beyond time." Let us see what this is about:
                  He misconstrues what Einstein meant. Time and space being equivalent doesn’t mean there is no problem temporal beginning nor does it mean that there is sequential order or becoming in a timeless void. It does mean we can speak of “before” BB as “beyond event horizon.” That’s not the same as cause and effect in a timeless state. I appeal to Odenwalk, NASSA phyisicist who says as much.
                  Time and space being eqivalent is only part of the issue. The real issue is that the claim "There is no causality or sequential order beyond time." is unproven

                  Metacrock offers us:

                  Our best guess at this time suggest that time and space as we know these concepts will become rather meaningless as the universe enters a purely quantum mechanical state of indeterminacy. Cosmologists such as Stephen Hawking suggest that the dimension of time is transformed via quantum fluctuations in the so-called "signature of the spacetime metric", into a space-like coordinate so that instead of 3-space and 1-time dimension, space-time becomes a 4-dimensional space devoid of any time-like features"

                  It is just a best guess. Metacrock has other quotes, but they are from 30 years ago (he has two from 2004, but they merely say there was a Big Bang, which we both agree on). Here is a more recent one:

                  Carroll, as well as many other physicists and cosmologists have begun to consider the possibility of time before the Big Bang, as well as alternative theories of how our universe came to be.
                  http://www.universetoday.com/15051/t...#ixzz2qmwm28Rv

                  And, from the same page:
                  The essence of the Hartle-Hawking idea is that the Big Bang was not the abrupt switch- ing on of time at some singular first moment, but the emergence of time from space in an ultra-rapid but nevertheless continuous manner.
                  See also this:
                  In this case, the uncertainty can, under special circumstances, affect the identities of space and time. For a very, very brief duration, it is possible for time and space to merge in identity, for time to become, so to speak, spacelike - just another dimension of space.
                  http://www.independent.co.uk/life-st...g-1584819.html

                  Curiously Metacrock says:
                  I just documented that it's based upon the latest work of physicists and it's line with the standard theory.
                  This is just not so. The latest work shows the Big Bang is still favoured, but not that time definitely started at that point. Metacrock needs to show that for his argument to work.

                  Further, this is problem for the theism. If there really was no time before the universe was created, and no change was possible before the universe was created, then it would be impossible for God to decide to create the universe.
                  wrong! here's where not knowing theology hurts: we exist in God's mind. We are not independent huncks of matter. we are fragments of thought in a mind. That means all God has to do is think about us. God isn't subject to the problems of time and non-time that's just the result of the conventional point of reference (time) that he created for us, so we can have our bearings. It has no more effect upon God than day dream has on us. That's way God is the only logical solution to the problem of temporal beginning. Only the author of the rules can re-write them and not be subject to them.
                  This can be said of any ad hoc explanation. We exist in the fedrel of hekapoopoo. Blah. Blah. Blah. That means the hekapoopoo just has to fedrel us and we exist, and time is just a frame of reference the hekapoopoo invented for us. Blah. Blah. Blah.

                  It is all a long way from proof. Some assumptions of this explanation:

                  1. God exists
                  2. We are fragments of thought in a mind.
                  3. God isn't subject to the problems of time and non-time.

                  The third of those is most relevant. Metacrock is saying it would be possible for God to decide to create the universe because God isn't subject to the problems of time and non-time, but this assumes pretty much what he is trying to prove. A circular atgument.
                  how could that possibly be construed as tautological?
                  I am saying the point Metacrock makes is trivially true, and he wants to debate that?

                  Okay, it is not a tautology. Please then prove it is true, Metacrock.
                  Yes, except for the basic concept of God. Once we understand what ground of being means we can see that we can see no reason for ground of being to be subject to the rules of creation that are set by the ground itself ("himself").
                  And once you understand that hekapoopoo means...

                  See, we can write this about anything, and it is just as meaningless. What we have is something that can create time. That thing is not subject to the rules of creation as you set them out, but there is no reason to suppose these are laws that govern things beyond time and space and no reason to suppose this thing is intelligent or gives a hoot about you and me.


                  I - b. God wrote the rule.

                  Okay, so let us suppose time did come to exist, what can we conclude from that?
                  that it logically violates the laws of nature.
                  Surely this is trivially true. We are talking about things outside time of space; why suppose the laws of nature in this universe would apply outside it?

                  Further than that, the laws of physics (i.e., the laws we have) are but a model of the laws of nature (i.e., the rules of the universe). We know they are not correct - we have one set for quantum and one set for gravity. The correct laws would combine the two. More relevant, the laws of physics break down at the Big Bang - they get it wrong.

                  So all we can really say is that if time came to exist then it violates the law that Metacrock has proposed - which may or may not be a law of nature.
                  Obvious we can assume there's a rule that "says" (or whatever it does, means) there can be no change in a timeless void.
                  We can assume what we want. Does not make it so.

                  Pretty obviously time exists, so if there was a timeless void, clearly there was no such rule (but perhaps a guideline).
                  He wants to pretend that my assert of God is begging the question. It's not becuase no other alternative will suit. anything naturalistic (that's all he can assert--a an atheist he has o stick to naturalism) anything naturalistic will be a violation of the nature law. If natural law says "no time = no change" there can't be a nauturlsitic casue for change.
                  We are talking about something outside of the natural universe. No one is arguing for a naturalistic cause in the sense of something that obeys the laws of this universe as we understand them.

                  If we assume that time had a beginning (and despite my objections above, I think this is probably true), then it either have started spontaneous or been started by something external to time. let us suppose the latter. How can we be sure that it was not started by:

                  (1) an unintelligent cause external to time
                  (2) an intelligent agency that does not give a hoot about humanity

                  We just have no way of knowing.
                  He decided it would not come to be naturalistic ally, or rather he decided he would change the rule.
                  Unsupported assertion. This assumes there is such a rule that applies outside of time, and outside the universe, and it assumes God exists.

                  Sure, that might be the case, but it is a long way from shown.
                  Or it may actually be that talk of rules change is metaphorical what he really did was to just introduce a point of will into a naturalistic scheme. doesn't matter how you look at it the point is that the change could not come about naturalistic ally becuase conditons would never warrant change since the conditions can be summed up as saying no time = no change.
                  Metacrock's argument comes down to:

                  1. Assert that if there is no time then there is no change
                  2. Declare that that rules does not apply to God alone
                  3. Conclude that God caused the change from no time to time

                  Certain point 1 seems intuitively right, but we are talking about processes well outside the realms of human experience. Science has shown that the intuitively wrong can actually be correct (eg quantum mechanics), and that is within our universe. As to what is true beyond and before our universe no one really knows.

                  Point 2 is just Metacrock's assumption.


                  I - c. Law of Logic or Law of Nature?

                  Metacrock used logic to show that "no change beyond time is possible", leading me to think he was proposing this as a law of logic, and so I was discussing whether God could do the logically impossible. Apparently I was wrong:
                  No its not. that's a red herring. Just there to throw us off the scent. It may be that he considers this impossible logically he has proof that it would be impossible to a center of will that can create all that is. He's assuming the laws of phsyics are logic, and they are not. Laws of physics are not the laws of logic and they are not logical. violating laws of physics is not a violation of logical laws.
                  Okay, so we both accept god cannot do the logically impossible, and that that is irrelevant here. Metacrock goes on to say, emphasising that this is a law of nature:
                  Up to this point he is assuming that changing the rule is a violation of the rule and he equates the rule (no time = no change) with the rules of logic. that is fallacious. laws of phsyics are not synonymous with laws of logic. In my view laws of logic are merely the way the relationship bewteen concepts stacks up. Rules of phsyics are the way the universe behaves. One is not necessarily the same as the other.
                  I am not sure what Metacrock means by "universe", but as far as I am concerned, this is something that appeared at the Big Bang. Sure, there is a rule in our universe that "no change beyond time is possible". The question is, does this rule apply outside the universe?

                  We have no way of knowing.

                  And that is where his argument falls apart.


                  I - d. God of the Gaps.

                  (1) All attempts at answering questions are based upon putting something in the gap of ignorance. So all answers are evocations of the gap thus one can take gapism too far and wind up saying that all arguments are gap fillers.
                  This misses the point.

                  God-of-the-gaps: We do not know how lightning happens, so we assume it is God
                  Science: We do not know how lightning happens, so we perform experiments that explore the phenomenon.

                  See, both approaches attempt the fill the gap, but the latter attempts to fill it with knowledge.

                  In this instance we have an unexplained phenomenon in the start of time. We do not know how it happened, so Metacrock assumes God. Classic god-of-the-gaps.
                  (2) Obviously there seems to be a barrier of logic or physical law to change in a timeless void. Somehow the universe doesn't cooperate with that idea. Yet he's right he's right in that it must have at one time.
                  Is it logic or physical law, Metacrock? You were insistent it was the latter before, now you are not so sure.

                  Please clarify!
                  (3) one of us is begging the question, clearly something did change things. It works either way to say "he is begging the question. my solution is the logical one." The real dividing line is his solutions by defintino has to be based upon naturslism. that means to work they must abide by natural law. Yet it's natural that's foribidding them. So he has no no solution, but he wants you to place blind faith in scinece and pretend there is one.
                  This is wrong on two counts.

                  Firstly, my position is "we do not know". I am not advocating any particular position, I am acknowledging that we have no way to tell.

                  Secondly, we are discussing events outside time and space. We have no idea what laws apply. Metacrock is trying to impose the laws of this universe on me, and that is just wrong.
                  (4) So believe in God now. maybe science will disprove it down the road and you can be an atheist then. there is still reason to believe in God now because there's no answer to this and faith is for suckers remember? ...
                  This is just classic god-of-the-gaps. Science has no answer, so let us pretend it is God until science has proved otherwise.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    [SIZE=4]II. Argument from Epistemic Judgement (Part One).[/SIZE]

                    II - a. Introduction.

                    His summary is ok but he misses the crucial point: the criteria we use to determine the reality of our experiences is the basis for epistemic judgement. Religious experience fits that criteria: that is what is regular, consistent, shared and navigational. Thus becuase it fits the criteria we use to determine reality we should accept it as real.
                    Well, I would say that I went on to address at least part of that, as the nmext section was titled "consistency", but the important point here is we now have four criteria.

                    II - b. Consistent.

                    First Gackenback quotes David Luckoff in discussing commonalites of RE.

                    "Lukoff (1985) identified five common characteristics of mystical experiences which could be operationalized for assessment purposes. They are:

                    1. Ecstatic mood, which he identified as the most common feature;

                    2. Sense of newly gained knowledge, which includes a belief that the mysteries of life have been revealed;

                    3. Perceptual alterations, which range from "heightened sensations to auditory and visual hallucinations (p. 167)";

                    4. Delusions (if present) have themes related to mythology, which includes an incredible range diversity and range;

                    5. No conceptual disorganization, unlike psychotic persons those with mystical experiences do NOT suffer from disturbances in language and speech.

                    It can be seen from the explanation of PC earlier that this list of qualities overlaps in part those delineated by Alexander et al."
                    Okay, so there is some commonality, but is this really consistent in the same manner as everyday experience?

                    Consider sitting on a log in a forest, sitting in a chair in an office and sitting on a chair on a crowded bus. All three events have some commonality, but they are not consistent. If you were on a bus, and you sat down to find yourself sitting on a log, you would think something was seriously amiss!

                    The 5 points listed above are very general. For example, point 2 is a sense of newly gained knowledge. If it was specific about what knowledge, I might be in trouble - it is not (indeed, if new knowledge is really gained, I might be, but they do not claim that, which is telling). Also number 4 actually says "an incredible range diversity", so is clearly not specific.

                    What we see here is an attemp to set the bar very low indeed. If I went into my office and found sometimes I was sitting on a log and sometimes on a bus seat I would know something was wrong, but this is the level of consistency Metacrock would have us believe shows religious experiences are truly from God.


                    II - b. Regular.

                    Metacrock claims the experiences are regular, so I include this to prompt him to support that claim.


                    II - c. Shared.

                    just to be clear, this is taken somewhat out of context, but is pretty much all Metacrock has said in his last postings on this:
                    It's we see something never seen before we seek to check. We do that in several ways one is to say "did you see that?" That's the shard aspect. It's not just "shared" but inter-subjective. That's what I mean by shared. We don't share the same experience of God's presence but it's inter-subjective in that we have similar subjective experiences that more than one person has.
                    His claim seems to be that numerous people have the generic experience.

                    To continue the sitting analogy, if I am sat at a dinner table withfriends, we are sharing an experience. If I am sat on a log in a forest, and you are sat on a crowded bus, that is not what I would call a shaed experience.


                    II - d. Navigational.

                    Again, I invite metacrock to put forward his argument here (and to explain what it means in this context).


                    II - e. Just Chemicals.

                    that is irrelevant to my argument here. He's wisely trying to spike another arguemnt he knows I make but I actually agree with him. My other argument is not dependent upon there being one center of God receptors in the brain, a multiplicity will do. But moreover, this is a different argument it has nothing to do withe one being considered now.
                    Metacrock has missed the point. It does not matter if there is one "god spot" or a hundred. The point is that mystical experience is merely a function of the brain. There is no need to invoke God to explain it.
                    that is truly an odd argument. He can't prove that any major incident relational to any major religion or religious experiences is any more connected with a mountain than with a valley. None of the mountain top experiences depicted of Christ in the Gosples were foundational for the faith. Sermon on the mount was teaching already given not an experience Jesus had then, and it's the sermon n the plane in Luke. We don't know enough about the historical incidents of Jesus life to make that claim.
                    Again, this misses the point. The article is saying major religious experiences are symptom of altitude sickness, and do not come from God. The conclusion is that so-called religious experiences are merely a function of chemicals in the brain.


                    II - f. The M scale.

                    the late John Hick, one of the great philosophers of religion in the last century, wrote a book,
                    , The New Frontier of Religion and Science: Religious Experience, Neuroscience and The Transcendent. Playgrave:Macmillion, 2006, he dealt with these kinds of researchers and this one in particular (62-66). He shows that they do not use the M scale or any other form of measurement to assure that they have produced RE. The draw that conclusion based upon the subjective ideas of the observer. For example one says "I had a dream about Jesus" he concludes "O you see I produced 'RE'" but that is not proof. Unless we have a standard to compare to we don't know what RE is. The m scale is the best validated standard there is. More validating studies support it than any other. These guys use no such scale. Hood is taking the individual subject's word for what they experienced but because he has a standard to compare it to he knows if the experiences stack up to RE or not. Since they have consistently done so in half a dozen different countries around the world, we know they do stack up and we know the standard is valid as per what people experience.
                    I am not clear how the M scale works, and I invite metacrock to talk us through it. As a starting point, I will offer my own understanding...

                    http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=F...igious&f=false

                    It appears to have 8 topics, asnd for each topic four statements. Participants are asked to rate each state from -2 (strongly disagree) to +2 (strongly agree), and to this value three is added (for negatively expressed statements, the response is reversed), so a response ranges from 1 to 5, and the total across 32 statements ranges from 32 to 160.

                    Hood broke the scale into two factors statistically, with each statement contributing to both by different amounts. Comparing how the items contributed, Hood declared Factor I to be intense experience, and factor II to be relgious joy.

                    To me, this is all based on subjective opinion. Metacrock asserts "The m scale is the best validated standard there is." I ask Metacrock to explain how it was validated, and to talk us through how it supports his claims.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      [SIZE=4]II. Argument from Epistemic Judgement (Part Two).[/SIZE]

                      II - g. Drugs.

                      that's the guy who did the good friday follow up. I've read both studies. Notice something about that first line? He starts out admitting drug induced is different from non drug induced. That's because they are not synonymous. Drugs don't just copy but there is a good reason to assume they are similar.
                      Different drugs have different effects, and as you say they are similar. It seems entirely possible that a new drug or a combination of drugs would have the same effect.
                      (1) The mere presence of naturalistic chemicals in the brain or the association of brain structure with experiences of the divine is not proof that the experience as a whole can be reduced to purely naturalistic phenomena.
                      I am not claiming they prove it is a purely naturalistic phenomenon, I am claiming they prove it could be a purely naturalistic phenomenon.
                      (2) God made us to be flesh and blood creatures and gave us a brain structure with brain chemistry is not amazing to think that if he communicates then he must do so through our chemical processes and brain structures. So we can assume that it may just be that some naturalistic process opens the receptors. The fact that drug induced and non drug induced RE are different might indicate this, one is with God and one without God. Or God with a drug.
                      Possible, but unproven.

                      Remember, Metacrock, you are asserting the positive. You have to show that it is so. It might be that the difference is God is present, it might be that the difference is in the type of drug used. We have no way to tell.
                      (a) It's all consistently good. If it was just misfire or just some kind of effect of drugs we should expect to find bad mystical experiences. the experiences that are negative are not connected to the mystical experience per se. One of the major negatives Spaonos and Moretti discuss is out of body but that doesn't even quality as mystical in Stace's view becasue it's not beyond word thought or image. RE is consistently positive, transformational and good for you, and lasts a life time. The bad stuff is usually sort therm.
                      I suspect there are no bad mystical experiences because they get labelled as something else. Remember, the very first defining feature of a mystical experience is "1. Ecstatic mood, which he identified as the most common feature;". Bad experiences are defined out.
                      (b) why is it not connected to degenerative processes? one would expect if it is just a coincidence or a naturalistic (therefore random) process then it should hit bad as often as it does good. Moreover it should be related tot he degenerative process of mental illness or drug addiction or something but it's not. It's related to things that make us better over time. There's a huge body of studies that prove this point.
                      I am not sure why it should be degenerative. Perhaps metacrock can explain.
                      (c) It's what we should expect if religious belief is true. We should expect the experience of God to have a lasting positive effect and make our lives better and it's true that it dose this. Summarizing two of the major early studies. Wuthnow and Nobel these are the outcomes:
                      Sure, but we would also expect Christians to have these experiences rather more than non-Christians. The simple fact is that they are not correlated to a specific religion, so they fail to conform to predictions in that way.

                      Remember that the second criterium is "2. Sense of newly gained knowledge," If these experiences come from God, we would expect knowledge that can be tested objectively (whether that is help finding a lost child or scientific insight or whatever). As far as I know, that never happens.


                      II - h. Believed to be Religious.

                      (1) this is about a woman who had some wild ideas about giving birth to Jesus and that's supposed to make it religious experience. they didn't' use a standardized scale such as the M scale so there's no to say that what she got was RE, but come on, giving birth to Jesus? Not exactly the born again experience I had.we are talking about kinds of experiences that don't fit the issues that relate to my argument.
                      This reinforces my statement early about why there are no bad mystical experiences - anything not conforming is rejected.

                      Given that consistency is being argued for, this is quite damning. Of course all mystical experiences conform to Metacrocks five criteria above, if those five criteria are used to filter possible experiences!

                      wait, what was item 4? "4. Delusions (if present) have themes related to mythology, which includes an incredible range diversity and range;" That actually sounds spot on.

                      (2) He refers to "famous visions" Stace says RE is beyond word, thought or image. So visions are not part of it. While many mystics have them and they can accompany RE they are not part of it in the Stace sense and thus they are not related to my argument. So this whole reasoning of attack is irrelevant.

                      may sound arbitrary but it's not. Stace based his theory upon the writings of mystics around the world, all he could find, they all disparage visions. they were all up about the experiences that were beyond visions and beyond any image.
                      The problem with visions is that they are not consistent. So we just sweep them under the carpet!

                      What Stace has done is found areas of generic commonality for mystical experiences, and downplayed areas of diversity, and thus he claims consistency. Tables and lions are virtually the same, as they both have four legs (and you ignore the fact that one is made f wood, the other flesh-and-blood).
                      Paul's experince was a vision with a voice that is not beyond word, thought or image. I'm sure he was a top flight mystic but this experience itself is not mystical. So that doesn't pertain to my argument.
                      Again with the "no true Scotsman" thing. Why does Paul's experience on the Road to Damascus not count as a mystical experience?

                      1. Ecstatic mood, which he identified as the most common feature;
                      2. Sense of newly gained knowledge, which includes a belief that the mysteries of life have been revealed;
                      3. Perceptual alterations, which range from "heightened sensations to auditory and visual hallucinations (p. 167)";
                      4. Delusions (if present) have themes related to mythology, which includes an incredible range diversity and range;
                      5. No conceptual disorganization, unlike psychotic persons those with mystical experiences do NOT suffer from disturbances in language and speech.

                      Did Paul have an ecstatic mood? Not sure on that one, but all the other boxes are ticked.


                      II - i. Real and Lasting.
                      actually in reading those I don't find any that it says lasted. They are not longitudinal so we don't know if they lasted a life time. Maslow followed his guys for 20 years. Moreover, he has to be more specific about what lasted and what didn't. In fact none of the things in any of those articles were subjected to any standard of measurement such as the M scale so we don't know if they qualify as mystical or not. We know many of them don't fit Stace.

                      I'm also dubious of "lasting" as an argument. debilitating events can last a life time that doesn't make them mystical. I'm not sure what lasting has to do with it in this case. I show that the negative effects are not lasing that makes a difference because we would expect God not to inflict life long disadvantages just to give us some advantage but a minor short term problem would be acceptable. But then to use lasting as a criteria for origin is not valid.
                      I will put it in bold for you:

                      "Although drug induced mystical experiences may be different than nondrug generated ones their effect none-the-less is close to the genuine and is long term. Doblin (1991) reported on a long term follow-up of the "Good Friday" experiment (Pahnke, 1963) where subjects were given a placebo or psilocybin. At the 6 month and the 30 year follow-ups the drug groups scored higher in terms of eight dimensions of their experiences which echo the mystical literature. These were unity, transcendence of time and space, deeply felt positive mood, sacredness, objectivity and reality, paradoxicality, alleged ineffability and transiency. Additionally the drug group members reported significantly more persistent changes in attitudes and behaviors over the interim period as a result of the experience."

                      We do not know if they lasted a life because they were not testing for, but you have yet to prove a study for non-drug-induced mystical experiences to show even a 30 year follow up.

                      And yes, these were positive effects.


                      II - j. Distribution of Mystical Experiences.

                      now he's playing God, he's doing the atheist second guess God thing. that comes form thinking of God as a big man in the sky. That's theology, we are not debating theology. spare me your misconceptions about the nature of god. We can debate theology latter.
                      Such a discussion is unavoidable. If you are claiming these experiences come from God, then it is pertinent to ask how and why.
                      In terms of the assumption that if Christianity were true then Buddhists who have mystical experience would give up Buddhism is a false assumption. It assumes a certain understanding of the way God is the simple big man in the sky kind of God who just cares about club membership rather than knowing people. My concept is that God is much more sophisticated. While yes he is drawing all people Christ he's not shallow enough to just tally that by club membership.
                      I do not know Metacrock's theology, but standard christian doctrine is that God wants to save us all, and that only faith in Jesus saves. His success then is that tally of club membership. Why else dod God send Jesus to earth if not to boost membership?
                      we have clearly illustrated the purpose several times.
                      But a few sentences ago Metacrock seemed to be saying we should not second guess God, and here he is saying he has actually done that several times! is it only Christians who are permitted to second guess God?
                      the purpose is to bring people to an intimate knowledge of God, not merely membership in a club, but knowledge of God at the whispering in your ear level. It's a knowing in the sense that you know your father when you picks you p out of the cradle. No better proof than the lives of the mystics. Those who had strong experiences of this nature all became missionaries, theologians, nuns, priests, big spiritual types. If they did not become Christians (they didn't join the club) they did follow God in that they became devoted to the path they understood best. Paul didn't tell hte Athenians, "you guys don't know god at all, you are going to hell and you are so off base, destroy these idols and start with the one to the unknown God,"

                      What did he say? He said "You already know him. But you don't know don't know him well enough."
                      What you are saying is Paul was wasting his time. It did not matter. It was enough that they knew God somewhat, without Paul having to convince them to join the club.
                      Even atheists who have had these kinds of experiences think they have found the meaning of life and set about living in such a way that enables them to explore it more. We can see that in Maslow's book on Peak experiences (he was an atheist), and there is a book Newberg talks about by an atheist.

                      Some people have such issues with the concept of God and with churches they don't want any part of standard religion but they have experiences and they can't deny they have been given a look around the corner and they are not goign to just forget it.

                      Mystical experience is associated with mystics and saints, it is assumed that one must be very powerfully spiritual to have this. If you listen to the people who have it they don't say "Yes I am a spiritual genius." they say "I didn't do anything to earn this, God just laid it on me." That's the thing. It's not a sign that one is ST. John of the Cross and you have arrived. It's not some ookie spooky thing that is only SN. It's natural. It works through the natural process of brain chemistry. It's sort of a "cheat" in the sense that one get's a look around the corner by an accident of brain chemistry. Yet that accident is set up by something more than just random chance. We all have it. and we can access it by seeking God. those of us who have these experiences are at different levels of understanding. So we still need to seek God. It's not that that we have arrived just that we have been given a glimpse into the larger world of reality.
                      All this correlates to the experiences being mundane, just chemicals in the brain.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        this is not my rebuttal or it can be part of it, but I will respond to his other two posts after this, and that may take a couple of days. Maybe even until Saturday.

                        Originally posted by The Pixie View Post
                        [SIZE=4]0. Definitions.[/SIZE]

                        We should have done this sooner, but to be clear that we are talking about the same thing, some definitions.
                        for one or two but for so many definitions it's best to use operational.

                        0 - a. Universe.


                        By universe, I mean a physical structure that started at the Big Bang, containing galaxies, stars, etc. It may be contained in some larger structure (eg the multiverse).
                        If you put that it starts with the BB as your definition then you don't get a multiverse and you have to accept that time begins with the BB.




                        0 - b. God.

                        An intelligent agency, who created this universe and who takes an interest in human affairs.
                        that's just the fundie bias that says god has to be "intelligent." I accept that God is conscoius but I don't necessary assert that is the only valid view of God. Process theology is not atheism it is a belief in God and put it posits a non personal god. I think a better definition is transcendental signified.

                        0 - c. Law of Nature.

                        A law of nature determines how the universe works; the underlying rules that govern how stuff happens.
                        yes that's not really different than the way I use it.

                        0 - d. Law of Physics.

                        The laws of physics are science's best guess at the laws of nature. They are models of the real laws, the laws of nature, and at least some are known to be wrong. Newton's laws are a good model, and relativity is a better one, better neither is perfect.
                        I understand that distinction and I know a lot of people make that distinction. I don't so much becuase the latter is just a guess at the former.



                        Note that Metacrock uses law of physics to mean the underlying law of nature; sometimes it is important to differentiate between the two so I will continue to use these definitions.
                        I agree.
                        Lord what fools these mortals be.
                        Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

                        President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Take as long as you like, there is no rush.
                          Originally posted by Metacrock View Post
                          that's just the fundie bias that says god has to be "intelligent." I accept that God is conscoius but I don't necessary assert that is the only valid view of God. Process theology is not atheism it is a belief in God and put it posits a non personal god. I think a better definition is transcendental signified.
                          Either we say "god" means an intelligent being, or you explain very carefully what YOU mean by the term, and I will see if we actually disagree or not. If you want to debate whether "god" exists, and you get to make up what that means as the debate continues, I am not bothering to continue.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by The Pixie View Post
                            Take as long as you like, there is no rush.

                            Either we say "god" means an intelligent being, or you explain very carefully what YOU mean by the term, and I will see if we actually disagree or not. If you want to debate whether "god" exists, and you get to make up what that means as the debate continues, I am not bothering to continue.
                            I believe that God is mind, thus conscoius. I also don't tell people with Spinozian views of God that they have a belief in God. by intelligent I meant conscious.
                            Lord what fools these mortals be.
                            Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

                            President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              1AR : his 2NC part 1 (A)


                              this is my next to the last, the first of my two rebuttals. my former words are in blue. what I said last time.

                              I. Argument from Temporal Beginning.

                              I - a. Introduction.

                              The issues in Metacrock's first few points are minor, but the point is that they are unproven. If any point is not proven, then the conclusion is not proven. Metacrock has set his sights lower, only aiming for rational warrant, but still, these things need to be shown to be consistently highly likely.
                              (1) I'm not sure what points he's talking about. He already lost, these are rebuttals and he has not disprove any of my premises. He can't make a new arguemnt.

                              (2) Asserting that my premises are unproved is nonse because I don't have to prove them in an absolute sense only to the extent that they demonstae eh warrant.

                              (3) warrant is not lowering sights. It's a valid step that all arguments require. See Stephen Tulmin the Uses of Argument. I have theological reasons why we can't prove the existence of God. See the thread on the Tillich book club for that.

                              Next he asserts theoreis that see time beginning before the big bang. problem is Big Bang is he expansion of space/time so time has to begin with the big bang. The only way it is supposed to exist before is in the form of other space/times as part of he multivariate.

                              Hawking says: "All the evidence seems to indicate, that the universe has not existed forever, but that it had a beginning, about 15 billion years ago. This is probably the most remarkable discovery of modern cosmology. Yet it is now taken for granted."

                              http://www.hawking.org.uk/the-beginning-of-time.html

                              The standard model is the only one with emprical evidence. The mulitverse is not proved, there is no evidence for other space/times that' is totally theoretical.

                              I don't know where he gets that idea but that's not what scientists I read say. They seem to assume the Big Bang is begining of time and we don't know what if anything stands beyond it (I don't 'before" becasue there's no before before time).

                              The issue is that we do not know. Some scientists see the Big Bang as the start of time, others do not:
                              the standard model knows. that is what the standard model says. I've quoted several people saying it including Hawking.

                              http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/as...s/060629a.html

                              However, there are other theories about our universe that suggest that there was indeed a time before the initial "bang." Two of the most popular theories are pre-Big Bang theory (using string theory) and the Ekpyrotic scenario (using the collision of "D-branes"). In these theories, the pre-big bang universe was very sparse and weakly interacting, but did eventually give rise to a sudden transition that is similar to our "big bang."

                              He misconstrues what Einstein meant. ...

                              Let us keep in mind this relates to the claim "There is no causality or sequential order beyond time." Let us see what this is about:

                              He misconstrues what Einstein meant. Time and space being equivalent doesn’t mean there is no problem temporal beginning nor does it mean that there is sequential order or becoming in a timeless void. It does mean we can speak of “before” BB as “beyond event horizon.” That’s not the same as cause and effect in a timeless state. I appeal to Odenwalk, NASSA phyisicist who says as much.

                              Time and space being eqivalent is only part of the issue. The real issue is that the claim "There is no causality or sequential order beyond time." is unproven
                              (1)The BB is the one with the empirical data behind it.

                              (2)Even so the same principle will still work even push the problem back to another stage. there still has to be a moment when time begins. Time can't run eternally it is leading to heat death. If has a finite end it has to have a finite beginning. It can't be eternal or it would not end.

                              Metacrock offers us:

                              “Our best guess at this time suggest that time and space as we know these concepts will become rather meaningless as the universe enters a purely quantum mechanical state of indeterminacy. Cosmologists such as Stephen Hawking suggest that the dimension of time is transformed via quantum fluctuations in the so-called "signature of the spacetime metric", into a space-like coordinate so that instead of 3-space and 1-time dimension, space-time becomes a 4-dimensional space devoid of any time-like features"


                              It is just a best guess. Metacrock has other quotes, but they are from 30 years ago (he has two from 2004, but they merely say there was a Big Bang, which we both agree on). Here is a more recent one:
                              of course it's all a guess. We all know that. No one knows what's out there for sure. did you science knows? It doesn't. Do you think atheists have a fact that there is time before teh big bang? It's as much a guess for them, in fact morose because their theories don't have empirical evidence and they not withstood the tests that the BB model has stood.

                              But the best guess means the closest thing we to empirical proof. It's an educated guess and one with the best theory behind it. Don't forget Odenwald took us through the top 10 theories and showed that Big Bang is he only one that has endured. I documented that in my last speech.

                              Carroll, as well as many other physicists and cosmologists have begun to consider the possibility of time before the Big Bang, as well as alternative theories of how our universe came to be.

                              http://www.universetoday.com/15051/t...#ixzz2qmwm28Rv

                              And, from the same page:

                              The essence of the Hartle-Hawking idea is that the Big Bang was not the abrupt switch- ing on of time at some singular first moment, but the emergence of time from space in an ultra-rapid but nevertheless continuous manner.

                              See also this:

                              In this case, the uncertainty can, under special circumstances, affect the identities of space and time. For a very, very brief duration, it is possible for time and space to merge in identity, for time to become, so to speak, spacelike - just another dimension of space.

                              http://www.independent.co.uk/life-st...g-1584819.html
                              None of those theories say that time runs eternally. That means time has to have a beginning and whenever that was it has to come afoul of the problem. Remember Odenwald's statement about how BB is still the best theory:

                              http://www.astronomycafe.net/qadir/q2561.html

                              "So there you have it. This is not a game of billiards where the cue ball ( data) is carefully lined up so that Big Bang theory comes out looking inevitable. Any of these other theories have been repeatedly invited to take their best shot too, and the results are always the same. The proponents have to intervene to even get their theories to pony up a simple prediction for any of these cosmological data."

                              The Hawking Hurtle no singularity (unbounded condition) idea is not going to beat my temporal beginning problem because

                              (1) far from proven it's also unprovable.

                              this from Odenwald on his old NASSA website (2004) so it's defuncted. I documented it on Doxa

                              Hawking not proven.

                              http://image.gsfc.nasa.gov/poetry/ask/a11037.html Odenwald
                              NASSA

                              Question:
                              If the Big Bang happened in a vacuum, what was it that was fluctuation without time present?

                              Answer:
                              "Although some cosmologists such as Stephen Hawking can write down the mathematics that describes a particular version of what might have happened, the truth is that we do not really know. We especially do not know what happens to gravity under these quantum conditions because we as yet have no theory that describes gravity in the necessary quantum language that has been experimentally shown to be sound. Until then, all we can do is look at pieces of the mathematical machinery and wonder what it all means."

                              (2) It does not posit that time is eternal. Just becuase it doesn't a starting moment of time doesn't mean it properes that runs eternally. thus you have the same problem you just lose it in losing the phenomena, it's a form of reductionism. In other words by taking focus of singularity and putting on no exact moment you are basically taking the glasses off the astronomer so he can't see the point in time then pretending that if he doesn't see it can't be there. you have not accounted for time. It can't be running eternally, so it has to have a beginnig.

                              (3) It ueses imaginary numbers, when they are taken out the singualirty comes back.

                              Robert Koons (Philosophy, UT)

                              However, the main problem with Hawking's model is its incorporation of an unbelievable view of time and change. When using physical theory in metaphysical investigation, one must be aware of a GIGO principle: garbage in, garbage out. When using a physical theory in metaphysics, one must be careful not to incorporate metaphysical absurdities in one's interpretation of that theory. Otherwise, any metaphysical conclusions one bases on this interpretation will be vitiated by these prior absurdities. In Hawking's case, he uses the technique of imaginary time, and interprets this technique as reflecting the true nature of the world. This means that Hawking starts out by assuming that time is no different from a spatial dimension, that there is no real becoming in the world. This is obviously false: physics can tell us many surprising things, but if a physicist tells us that there is no such thing as the passage of time, we have good grounds for concluding that a serious mistake has been made. As soon as we interpret Hawking's model in a way that treats time in a credible way, we find (as Hawking himself admits) that the initial singularity re-appears.[Ibid]

                              (4) Cart before the horse, theory assumes Quantum theory of gravity which has not been produced yet.

                              Koons:

                              "Hawking's model is highly speculative, based on what Hawking believes a quantum theory of gravity (which does not yet exist) must be like. In addition, mounting evidence against the eventuality of the Big Crunch spoils the symmetry of Hawking's model."

                              (5) Unbounded conditions goes away and singularity comes back when we understand it form persective of real time.

                              Hawking's theory relys upon imaginary time, it does not take place in the real world that we live in. When we understand the situtation from the perspective of real time, the universe still begins as a singularity and time still requies a begining. Fritz Shafer, University of Georgia, "In Hawking and Hartle's no doubndy proposal, the notion that the universe has neither begining nor end is something that exists in mathematical terms only. In real time, which is what we as human biengs are confined to...there will always be a singularity, a begining of time. Among his contradictory statements in A Brief History of Time, Hawking actually concedes this. 'When one goes back to real time in which we live there will still appear to be singularities...in real time the Universe has a begining.'" (Shaffer lecture, Website, Leadership University http://leadership.com/bingbang2.com/html)

                              (6)

                              Unbounded condition imposes its own bounded condition

                              Stephen Barr:

                              "The sufficient answer to the no boundry boundry condition [Hawking rather than eleminating boundry conditions has actually impossed one, that there is no boundary] as an argument against God has been well expressed by the physicist Don Page, a friend and collaborator of Stephen Hawking, as it happens a born again Christian: 'God creates and sustains the entire universe rather than just the begining. Wheather or not the unvierse has a begining has no relevance to the question of its creation just as wheather an artist's line has a begining and end or forms a circle has no relevance to the quesiton of it's being drawn.'" This is the response by Stephen M. Barr, phyicist at the University of Delaware (in review of book by Kitty Fergesson, "Fire in the Equasions." Pulished in First Things 65 August/Sept. 1996, 54-57.)

                              In other words, the issue is not merely the "beginig" of the universe but the source of it. That it couldn't pop into existance out of nothing is a proof of God, that it couldn't exist on its own with no cause is a proof of God, that it may have always existed with no actual begining is beside the point because it still has to have a source of origin even if it has no starting point in time. In other words this talk of boundry condiditions and no begining in time is just a paradox of language created by the fact that time would start up with the universe. The universe still has to have a source or a sustaining source of its existance.[Ibid]
                              Lord what fools these mortals be.
                              Puc, Mid Sumer Night's Dream, A Midsummer-Night's Dream. Act III. Scene II

                              President Roosevelt to Rich republicans: "I welcome your hatred."

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