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August 27, 2018

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Quote 287daysleft : AP:--- You may note you have asked a rather big question. I am reading a rather interesting book that explains everything much better than I could hope to called "the God theory" by Bernard Haisch which you can get for free here:
http://library1.ga/_ads/2F4AA39424084CC8CE92ECFA4C0BCC5B --- Bernard is a highly respected Astrophysicist Ph.d who worked at NASA, Lockheed, and Space Sciences Laboratory.


287daysleft, thanks for that link. I’ve bookmarked this link, put that e-book on my reading list. Given that it’s free, I will probably get to it much sooner than if I’d had to pay for it! :-)

And what’s more, this website -- which I hadn’t ever visited before this -- seems interesting too, it might be interesting to check out later, at leisure. Again, thanks for the recommendation.


However, as far as this discussion of ours is concerned, perhaps you could simply outline what you believe is Haisch’s main argument in that book? (For now I’ll go with the portions you’ve quoted in your comment.)


Quote Bernard Haisch, as quoted by 287daysleft : "The single difference between the theory I propose and the ideas current in modern astrophysics is that I assume that an infinite conscious intelligence preexists. You cannot get away from the preexistence of something, and whether that is an ensemble of physical laws generating infinite random universes or an infinite conscious intelligence is something present-day science cannot resolve, and indeed one view is not more rational than the other. --- "One might argue that one view is supported by evidence and the other is not. I would agree one hundred percent. The evidence for the existence of an infinite conscious intelligence is abundant in the accounts of the mystics and the meditative, prayerful, and sometimes spontaneous exceptional experiences of human beings throughout history. The evidence for random universes is precisely zero. Most scientists will reject the former type of evidence as merely subjective, but that simply reduces the contest of views to a draw: zero on both sides."


I’ve taken the liberty of quoting all of what you quote from Haisch, even at the risk of clogging up Brian’s server space, in order to properly highlight his words and address them.

Do you realize something, 287daysleft? Haisch, although a scientist himself, is himself merely philosophizing here. He isn’t actually doing science. That makes this particular appeal to authority entirely invalid.

You can’t simply “assume” things like “infinite consciousness”. That isn’t how science works! Even when it is a bona fide scientist who’s philosophizing away, this is only speculation and not science.

Sure, random intuitive assumptions can be used to build up hypotheses, and should these hypotheses stand the test of falsifiability, then we treat them as bona fide scientific theories. But that isn’t the case here at all!

Haisch claims that there is no evidence for random universes. (And no doubt he is far more knowledgeable about random universes than I could ever hope to be, so I’ll take his word for it.) But he then goes on to say that his own pet assumption has no evidence either, and basis this he seems to imply that, therefore, the two assumption are equally likely -- and he seems to further imply that this raises his own pet assumption to the level of science.

That (implicit) logic is so very flawed, at so many different levels!

What if I assume that my garage houses an invisible immortal elephant -- the same one I spoke of in my first comment addressed to you on this thread -- that farts out this universe only to consume it again, in a never-ending cycle, every 25 billion years? My assumption has “zero evidence” too. Does that make my assumption just as likely as the random universes hypothesis, and does that make my elephant-deity theory a scientific proposition?

Sure, modern physics abounds in all sorts of hypotheses that are not supported by evidence. To the extent that these are unsupported by evidence, we shouldn’t be thinking of them as established science at all. Some of these will be rejected outright going forward, basis evidence or the lack of it, others will be refined a great deal, and some actually accepted. We’d be well advised to accept as “true” only such hypotheses that do have the support of actual evidence.

Do you agree? Does my refutation of Haisch’s ideas (as quoted by you, and in as much as you seem to be treating those quoted ideas as rational and scientific, as opposed to harmless random speculation indulged in at leisure) sound logical to you?

Quote Osho Robbins : Appreciative Reader --- I read your comments. --- My first response is this: (…)


Hello, Osho Robbins. Good to be chatting with you again! We’ve missed you here on this blog, and I’m glad you’re back commenting here again! :-)

As always, your comment presents great food for thought! I do have some follow-ons to what you say. Seeing that Brian has started a fresh thread around this comment of yours, let’s move this party to that thread, shall we?

Quote Tucson : I think if I comment on that I'll put my foot in my mouth more often than usual


No issues! I enjoy reading your comments on this blog, and would just like to explore your ideas a bit more, and try to understand them a bit better, that’s all! Go ahead and put your foot in your mouth all you want in the process, I’m perfectly fine with that, as long as the end result is clarity in communication! :-)

Quote: Generally, I think mysticism obfuscates clarity.


I’m not sure what you mean by this?

In my experience, the word “mysticism” is used in two senses : the first refers to irrationality, and the second to intuitive understanding. I’d been using the term in the second sense (which would be obvious, I should have thought, given the context of my comment, and given your views as you express them here, about this “clarity” for instance).

I’m not sure how mysticism, how your intuitive understanding, obfuscates anything. Would you explain that again?


Quote: God just means consciousness to me. Maybe someone else would use the word energy or presence or existence or awareness or something like that. 'Consciousness' works for me.


Again, would you explain your meaning further?

Consciousness exists. There can be no doubting that. Many living beings -- certainly us human beings -- are possessed of consciousness. Obviously. That much is a perfectly trite and commonplace observation.

But I’m sure you mean something more than that? Because if not, then to call this consciousness “God” makes no sense, does it?

So, Tucson, would you explain this meaning further? Explain with some more precision and definition your ideas about this “consciousness” you speak of?


And -- provided I’m right in concluding that you believe of some form of Consciousness outside of what is we humans, for instance, possess -- then I’d like to know what you base this belief of yours on. I realize this is a personal and subjective take, but I’d like to better understand your basis for this POV of yours.

Quote Spencer : Hi Appreciative! --- You used a term I really like.. --- 'Apathism' --- LOL! --- Did you invent that? --- Like, 'doesn't care enough either way..?'


No, no, absolutely not! “Apatheism” is actually a word, and it refers -- as you say -- to the position of the person who is wholly uninterested in the God question, so very uninterested that he cannot be bothered even to refute some God-idea (and much less, obviously, to actually lead his life basis that God-idea).

Although I suppose the apatheist is, arguably, at heart an atheist -- if only instinctively, and even if his actual attitude is entirely unexamined -- because I don’t see how anyone can be indifferent to the question of whether one might end up getting an eternity of torment (or bliss) basis how one conducts oneself. But of course, that last is only my take : the fact is that apatheism is really a thing, irrespective of whether apatheists are actually closet atheists.

Hi Osho - how's it going my brother, very long time no speak? :o)

Interesting conversation between yourself and the ever articulate Appreciative Reader (if you're reading, how goes it my friend? Hope all is as well as is possible with you and yours.......) regarding the label of "atheist".

If I may interject here - and I know you have a relationship with Brian, and you both elevate each other's "recognition" online in these very small circles (:-) - but if I may be direct and blunt here, I think your comments are a complete & utter misrepresentation of the "atheism" Brian has embodied on this blog over the past 13 odd years.

It's all well and good playing semantic games with what the word "atheism" means but it does not necessarily - and in this particular case definitively not so - mean that ideal is reflected in our actual beliefs and actions.

Over the past 13 years, Brian has repeatedly demonstrated his ideology and belief is more clearly reflected in the labels "ideological & dogmatic atheist", believer in "scientism", and a "reductive materialist". Now, I know many, many people associated with RS do not appreciate or understand the significance of these labels, but to those who do, they may be aware these do not reflect the ideal of genuine "atheism" as you define it, but rather an un-examined & out-dated ideological philosophical world view (the absurdity of such a world view is addressed in the modern culture by such authors as Bernardo Kastrup, for eg.)

Further, he has repeatedly insinuated mystical experiences either don't exist (which, by the way, is completely delusional!), or they mean or signify absolutely nothing at all other than brain generated "hallucination". These are easy but ignorant dismissals to make by somebody who has never had a single mystical experience in their life, as he has himself has admitted on numerous occassions!

Brian also has a whole set of beliefs he doesn't llke to be challenged, such as consciousness is an epi-phenomena of matter (despite there being zero scientific evidence for this), or in the big bang theory (despite most cutting-edge scientists saying it most likely incorrect - I provided Brian with a BBC Horizon docu on it, he ignored it, as he does anything he is unable to deal with.....at this point, he descends into irrelevant and factually incorrect ad-hominem insults such as pejoratively calling you a "True Believer" (reminiscent of the "kafir" label of muslims applied to all those who don't believe EXACTLY as they do, or, more simply, are just open minded to mystery or had the temerity to have a "mystical" "hallucination" etc).

13 years ago, Brian and other pseudo-atheists (really ideological & fundamentalist atheists), were hiding the existential implications of a full-on belief in scientism, reductive materialism, a cold, hard meaningless universe within which we are mindless meat-robots, behind a masquerade of ridiculous notions such as "awe" with the scientific universe & "humanism" etc - understandable, they simply do not understand the implications of these world-views, despite the same philosophies and debates being had for millennia (they thought Sam Harris, the Churchlands, Dawkins, Dennet et all discovered materialism and atheism!! Hehe...).

But, in his advancing years, he can carry the charade on no further. Reality takes it's toll. And we have posts like this:

http://hinessight.blogs.com/church_of_the_churchless/2018/07/existence-is-entirely-futile-a-brave-essay-on-the-human-condition.html

Yes, indeed. We are so lucky that Brian sees into the nature of this magnificent creation so clearly & accurately.

Existence is entirely futile. Nihilism is the true path.

And having a flattering photo of yourself whilst you gleefully try to take away what little support so many people have in their life.

Of course.

Since we are all born Atheists it would be true that we would not have a belief in God until we have made the decision to believe or not,
possibly they meant that agnostic was a belief but that is also lacking faith but needs some proof, this is the catch, there can only be a faith in God since there seems to not be any scientific proof as of yet,
as for all belief systems, they are supposed to bring some sort of morality into your life if you can filter all of the fear and superstition from the various scriptures, whereas an Atheist has chosen to live life on his own terms using his own moral compass which cannot be considered any worse than any religion,
and actually in your case Brian, you could be considered doing God's work in having people evaluate their lives and beliefs, taking a step back and accepting the consequences of our own actions just as Taoism and Buddhism do.

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