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Please present convincing reasons based on scientific findings, that naturalism is more compelling than theism. 
Posted: 17 March 2012 08:26 AM   [ Ignore ]  
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Please present convincing , scientific based reasons and philosophical arguments,  that naturalism is more compelling, and makes more sense than theism.  Whatever answer you give, it will be always based on a statement, taken on faith. The ultimate truth cannot be proven. So cannot Gods existence. But based on what we do know, we can infere a pretty accurate picture. Even if we do not know everything, we have more data and tools on hand than ever before in history. If you believe, philosophical and scientific reasons make it more reasonable to deduce naturalism, please present the arguments here.

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Posted: 17 March 2012 09:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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In what sense are you using “scientific findings,” Lindoia? Is it a scientific finding to look at a rock and say, That’s a rock? Is it equally scientific not to see a rock and claim, That’s a crock!?

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Posted: 17 March 2012 09:29 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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The reason that “we have more data and tools on hand than ever before in history” is that methodological naturalism, also known as the scientific method, works. Methodological naturalism has been the mechanism by which humanity has been able to slowly circle in from a distance on how stuff does the stuff it does. You were able to post your question on an internet forum because methodological naturalism works. Theism is not testable because it says nothing about how the physical world works. It predicts nothing testable, it merely makes baseless assertions.

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Posted: 17 March 2012 09:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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nonverbal - 17 March 2012 09:21 AM

In what sense are you using “scientific findings,” Lindoia? Is it a scientific finding to look at a rock and say, That’s a rock? Is it equally scientific not to see a rock and claim, That’s a crock!?

You can just answer, based on what do you infere naturalism, and we will discuss if and why it should be a compelling argument .

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Posted: 17 March 2012 09:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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VeronicaS - 17 March 2012 09:29 AM

The reason that “we have more data and tools on hand than ever before in history” is that methodological naturalism, also known as the scientific method, works.

Methodological naturalism is the pressuposition that only naturalistic explanations for given pheonomena are aloud, because ” any attempts to define causal relationships with the supernatural are never fruitful “.

I would love to know, why that should be the case. Why should only naturalistic answers be convincing and ” fruitful” , but not supernatural ones ? how about you show, why naturalistic explanations are more convincing, than supernatural ones ? Pick just one issue, and we can discuss it.

Methodological naturalism has been the mechanism by which humanity has been able to slowly circle in from a distance on how stuff does the stuff it does.

It was not fruitful so far to explain the fine-tuning of the universe, the formation of the galaxies, planets, stars, the existence of carbon, essencial for life,  the come into existence of the first life, and the biodiversity in nature, the existence of humans with hability of self awareness, of speech, of imagination, of will,  the existence of sex, and many other questions. They remain basically unexplained, and postulates on mere faith.

You were able to post your question on an internet forum because methodological naturalism works. Theism is not testable

Neither so is the theory of evolution…. Or any historical sciences.

because it says nothing about how the physical world works. It predicts nothing testable, it merely makes baseless assertions.

Empirical sciences are very limited in explaining our world.

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Posted: 17 March 2012 10:16 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]  
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It appears that you are under the impression that there is a worthwhile conversation to have comparing the relative utility of supernatural and natural explanations for physical phenomena. This is not the case. The supernatural explanation for why the stars and planets moved across the sky was angels beating their wings. The natural explanation of universal gravitation accounted for the observations in a much more elegant manner, and, it had the added benefit of making testable predictions. Newton’s theory of universal gravitation is what allowed for the realization that light propagates at a finite speed, and allowed the first estimate of what that speed is.  Methodological naturalism is extremely useful in explaining the fine tuning of the universe. That we haven’t figured everything out yet detracts nothing from the fact that methodological naturalism is the means by which progress has been made down that road.

To say that evolution theory predicts nothing and is not testable is flat out wrong. It predicts many things. If the theory is valid, that predicts that fossils would be discovered in the geological column in a strict chronological sequence. This can easily be tested and falsified by finding fossils of turkeys in the same geological strata as trilobites. It makes predictions about distribution of species and genetic relationships, all of which are testable, and have withstood the test of observation. The supernatural explanations do not hold up under examination.

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Posted: 17 March 2012 01:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]  
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Lindoia - 17 March 2012 08:26 AM

Please present convincing , scientific based reasons and philosophical arguments,  that naturalism is more compelling, and makes more sense than theism.

(Andrew): I’ll try:
Naturalism…“a theory denying that an event or object has a supernatural significance; specifically: the doctrine that
scientific laws are adequate to account for all phenomena”...is the only basis for the acquiring of knowledge.

Consider the case if naturalism is false: Some or all of the phenomena we perceive are caused by supernatural agencies.
Take, for example, the observation that “particles and aggregations of matter exert upon each other an attractive force proportional to the product of their masses and also proportional to the inverse square of the distance between their centers of mass”. The naturalist assumes that this is caused by an impersonal force we call gravity. However, it might be caused by personal supernatural forces, like undetectable fairies.


The fairies are very intelligent, and capable of communicating with each other instantaeously…and they’ve decided that they are going to move stuff around in a consistent manner, as if there was a force like that described above. At least, that’s what
they’re doing now. It’s possible that they acted a little differently in ancient times, and that’s why the ancients thought that heavier objects fell faster than light ones. It’s possible that sometime next year the fairies will change their minds again…and behave differently…and dropped objects will fall up or sideways. As long as the fairies keep their act up, there’s no way we can ever tell that they’re the ones behind the pheonmena we observe and not an impersonal force like gravity. If the fairies exist, all the conclusions we draw about the universe based on the existence of gravity are unfounded.


If the rest of the phenomena we see are also caused by fairies then there’s nothing whatsoever we can deduce based on our observations of the universe. If we don’t start out by assuming that phenomena are caused by non-supernatural forces, if we don’t assume naturalism to start with, as an axiom, then we can’t accumulate any knowledge at all.

—thanks Avran

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Posted: 17 March 2012 02:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]  
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VeronicaS - 17 March 2012 10:16 AM

It appears that you are under the impression that there is a worthwhile conversation to have comparing the relative utility of supernatural and natural explanations for physical phenomena. This is not the case. The supernatural explanation for why the stars and planets moved across the sky was angels beating their wings.

who makes that ridiculous assertion ?

The natural explanation of universal gravitation accounted for the observations in a much more elegant manner, and, it had the added benefit of making testable predictions.

Please can you go in more detail, and present actually convincing facts ?

Methodological naturalism is extremely useful in explaining the fine tuning of the universe.

Would you be so kind and present that explanation ?

That we haven’t figured everything out yet detracts nothing from the fact that methodological naturalism is the means by which progress has been made down that road.

Methodological naturalism pressuposes that only natural explanations provide compelling answers for essencial questions of the existence of the universe, and all that exists. I don’t know why . That is in my view as much harmful, as the catholic church, which oposed scientific research in the middle age. We should let evidence lead whereever it is. Pressupositions do not serve to promote advance in science.

To say that evolution theory predicts nothing and is not testable is flat out wrong.

It depends if we talk about neodarwinism, or speciation, or change and adaptation in small scale…..


If the theory is valid, that predicts that fossils would be discovered in the geological column in a strict chronological sequence

Unfortunately for the darwinists, that is not the case. .


This can easily be tested and falsified by finding fossils of turkeys in the same geological strata as trilobites.

That is a simplistic answer. Its much more complex that that, to come to credible conclusions.


It makes predictions about distribution of species and genetic relationships, all of which are testable, and have withstood the test of observation.

http://hauns.com/~DCQu4E5g/DNA.html

Over the decades that I have considered the creation/evolution debate, I have asked numerous biologists if they have ever known of even one such gene mutation that was 100% positive in nature (meaning that there were no negative side effects such as having the genes for eyes, ears, fingers, toes, and etc.) None of us have ever heard of such a new gene. The best evolutionists can do is the gene for sickle-cell anemia and they hang onto this as an example of positive mutation for proof of evolution. This is in spite of the fact that 25% of the recipients for this mutation (the ones who receive the gene from both parents) are killed by the disorder it causes. Evolutionists claim this as a positive trait because the people who receive the gene from just one parent have an increased resistance to malaria. They forget to tell you that only 50% of the offspring receive the resistance while 50% are either killed by the gene or don’t receive the resistance. I don’t know of anyone who thinks this is such a good gene that everyone should have it like the genes for eyes, ears, or fingers. If this is such a great mutation, why do we have a national organization to help people who have it?

 

The supernatural explanations do not hold up under examination.

So you have certainly a answer on hand, how complex and specified information in the cell can be explained through a natural origin ??

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Posted: 17 March 2012 02:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]  
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Andrew - 17 March 2012 01:17 PM

Naturalism…“a theory denying that an event or object has a supernatural significance; specifically: the doctrine that
scientific laws are adequate to account for all phenomena”..

and the physical laws came from where ? and where finely tuned how ??

.

is the only basis for the acquiring of knowledge.

why so ?

Consider the case if naturalism is false: Some or all of the phenomena we perceive are caused by supernatural agencies.
Take, for example, the observation that “particles and aggregations of matter exert upon each other an attractive force proportional to the product of their masses and also proportional to the inverse square of the distance between their centers of mass”. The naturalist assumes that this is caused by an impersonal force we call gravity. However, it might be caused by personal supernatural forces, like undetectable fairies.

The existence of the fundamental forces, as gravitational forces, also demands for explanation. And specially , why they are finely tuned to life.

 

 

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Posted: 17 March 2012 04:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]  
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The ‘angels beating their wings’ theory of celestial mechanics was a fairly common view in christian circles proir to Newton. There have been many other supernatural explanations, such as the ‘what we see in the sky is actually the busted skull of a murdered frost giant’. The problem with the supernatural explanations is that, as soon as someone offers one with some specific claims about observable phenomena in it, it crumbles immediately under scrutiny, just like yours will as soon as you get around to offering one.

Are you trying to suggest that gravitational theory is something that is news to you? The ‘actually convincing facts’ of Newton’s theory were solid and convincing enough for it to reign as the accepted explanation for over two hundred years. This is not some obscure theory that most people never heard of. His was an explanation of what gravity does. The force is related to the product of the masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance. Factor in the gravitational constant and you can accurately predict the apparent force of attraction between the two masses. That’s what gravity does. Einstein explained what gravity is. Mass warps the fabric of space/time. All of this is widely known, so, you can do your own homework assignments from this point on.

If you have knowledge of someone finding turkeys and trilobites in the same strata, you should go ahead and present your findings for publication, because you’re the guy that the young earth creationists have been searching high and low for.

What you are doing is beating around the bush at a god of the gaps argument, hoping that some space can be eeked out for the supernatural by default in the areas where something is not yet completely understood. That has shown itself to be completely useless as an explanation, since it asserts nothing and predicts nothing. A universe in which it is true is identical to a universe in which it is false by any test possible. But, here’s a bit of evidence for how useful methodological naturalism is. It allows me to accurately predict that the angel wing or frost giant theories of celestial mechanics are no more ridiculous than whatever supernatural explanation for the motions of celestial bodies you hold, if you would go ahead and throw it out there, rather than trying to gain credibility for it by default based on the observation that we don’t know everything yet.

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Posted: 17 March 2012 04:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]  
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Lindoia - 17 March 2012 02:44 PM

and the physical laws came from where ? and where finely tuned how ??

(Andrew):  I don’t understand your questions.  Or at least I don’t understand them in the context of my response to you.

Lindoia - 17 March 2012 02:44 PM

why so ?

(Andrew):  Read my post…it explains it.

Lindoia - 17 March 2012 02:44 PM

The existence of the fundamental forces, as gravitational forces, also demands for explanation. And specially , why they are finely tuned to life.

(Andrew):  You’re changing the subject.  You wanted a reason to trust naturalism over theism and I gave you one.

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Posted: 17 March 2012 06:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]  
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VeronicaS - 17 March 2012 04:27 PM

The ‘angels beating their wings’ theory of celestial mechanics was a fairly common view in christian circles proir to Newton.

But its not biblical, and therefore worthless.


There have been many other supernatural explanations, such as the ‘what we see in the sky is actually the busted skull of a murdered frost giant’. The problem with the supernatural explanations is that, as soon as someone offers one with some specific claims about observable phenomena in it, it crumbles immediately under scrutiny, just like yours will as soon as you get around to offering one.

Lets see if your naturalism world view withstands scrutiny then….

Are you trying to suggest that gravitational theory is something that is news to you?

Its not absolutely new, but i admit i don’t know too much about it.

 

The ‘actually convincing facts’ of Newton’s theory were solid and convincing enough for it to reign as the accepted explanation for over two hundred years. This is not some obscure theory that most people never heard of. His was an explanation of what gravity does. The force is related to the product of the masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance. Factor in the gravitational constant and you can accurately predict the apparent force of attraction between the two masses. That’s what gravity does. Einstein explained what gravity is. Mass warps the fabric of space/time. All of this is widely known, so, you can do your own homework assignments from this point on.

so far, what you explain here, is not new to me. So what ?

If you have knowledge of someone finding turkeys and trilobites in the same strata, you should go ahead and present your findings for publication, because you’re the guy that the young earth creationists have been searching high and low for.

I have no defined standpoint about how old the earth actually is. Neither do i think, that is such a important issue.

What you are doing is beating around the bush at a god of the gaps argument

based on what specific argument that i made, do you answer its a god of the gaps argument ?

, hoping that some space can be eeked out for the supernatural by default in the areas where something is not yet completely understood.

I think we have a pretty well understanding about the fact , that the universe most probably had a absolute beginning, that it is finely tuned to life, that life needs codified complex and specified information in the cell, that a moral sense is common amongst any tribe and population, that thoughts , will, emotions , speech is a capability of the sould and the spirit, and so a separate entity than the body. All this cannot be explained in a satisfied manner through naturalism, but points straight to a intelligent creator. No god of the argument applies to any of these issues.

 

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Posted: 17 March 2012 08:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]  
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Lindoia - 17 March 2012 06:34 PM

But its not biblical, and therefore worthless.

Its not absolutely new, but i admit i don’t know too much about it.

This, in a nut shell, is the source of your confusion. If you would like to have the world start making sense to you, there are two things that you need to do.
First, learn some science. If something as basic and long-standing as gravitational theory is not something that you are familiar with, you need to read some books. Science books, written by scientists for the purpose of teaching science to people that might go into some field of science professionally. Learn some science. All sorts of things will make more sense. Like why methodological naturalism’s explanation of desease by use of germ theory makes a lot more sense than the supernatural explanation of wrath of god theory or evil spirit theory.

After learning some science, you would then be able to do the second thing, which is to quit looking at the bible backwards. You are currently starting with the assumption that the bible has merit, and are rejecting anything that seems to contradict it. That is a backwards way of approaching it. The better way is to, again, learn some science,  and then ask yourself this question. ” In view of what is known about the workings of the universe, is this the story that I would write to explain that?” Approach the bible with the same degree of skepticism that you approach science with, doubt and question everything in it, require evidence to establish veracity, compare the assertions in the bible to the available evidence, and see where that takes you. The only drawbacks to this method are that it takes work, and you have to do your own thinking.

 

 

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Posted: 18 March 2012 02:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]  
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VeronicaS - 17 March 2012 08:06 PM
Lindoia - 17 March 2012 06:34 PM

But its not biblical, and therefore worthless.

Its not absolutely new, but i admit i don’t know too much about it.

This, in a nut shell, is the source of your confusion.

You seem really funny….. to say the least…..

Who told you i am confused ?

If you would like to have the world start making sense to you

Who told you it does not make sense to me ?

First, learn some science.

Who told you i have not done so ?

If something as basic and long-standing as gravitational theory is not something that you are familiar with

that is not what i said. I just said that i never got too much into details…....

All sorts of things will make more sense. Like why methodological naturalism’s explanation of desease by use of germ theory makes a lot more sense than the supernatural explanation of wrath of god theory or evil spirit theory.

Well, thats what we suppose to discuss here.

After learning some science, you would then be able to do the second thing, which is to quit looking at the bible backwards. You are currently starting with the assumption that the bible has merit,

How about we let the bible on side at the moment, and just looke where the scientific evidence leads us ?

In view of what is known about the workings of the universe, is this the story that I would write to explain that?”

My dear, i have done all that already. What i would like to know as base of our discussio, , why naturalism makes more sense, than supernatural explanations TO YOU. And we’ll have a closer look to that.


Approach the bible with the same degree of skepticism that you approach science with

You are making a assumption here : That there are two counterweigths : on one side the bible, on the other end science. No no…. These are in two completely different categories, even if both in some part treat about the same thing, like the beginning of the universe and the earth, beginning of life etc.


The only drawbacks to this method are that it takes work, and you have to do your own thinking.

I have done A LOT of thinking already…..How about we start and examine just one issue, and see why it makes more sense to believe in naturalism, than theism ?  Lets see just one phenomenon or issue. Its your pick…. we can debate the beginning of the universe, formation of stars, planets, galaxies, chemical evolution, beginning of life, evolution, whatever you want.

 

 

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Posted: 18 March 2012 08:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]  
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Lindoia - 17 March 2012 09:31 AM
nonverbal - 17 March 2012 09:21 AM

In what sense are you using “scientific findings,” Lindoia? Is it a scientific finding to look at a rock and say, That’s a rock? Is it equally scientific not to see a rock and claim, That’s a crock!?

You can just answer, based on what do you infere naturalism, and we will discuss if and why it should be a compelling argument .

If you can manage to complicate things sufficiently, then surely you’ll attract the naive and relatively naive. I asked for you to give me some sense of your use of “scientific findings” because it seems to be a term out of place for the task you’re looking to complete. I wouldn’t even think to rely on scientific findings to inform me about whether or not a rock was sitting in front of me. Nor would I have cause to consider seeking out scientific findings to assist me in determining whether or not a rock was NOT in front of me.


Maybe I’ve completely misunderstood your OP question. Is it possible that you’re asking about aspects of theism other than some magical and invisible creature that inhabits some magical and invisible kingdom? Those would be secondary in importance at best, it seems to me.

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Posted: 18 March 2012 08:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]  
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nonverbal - 18 March 2012 08:36 AM

I wouldn’t even think to rely on scientific findings to inform me about whether or not a rock was sitting in front of me.

Sure, for that sort of information, we do not need science. But science has enlightened us about several things, that we had no knowledge of until even recent times ago. As for that most probably the universe had a beginning, about formation of carbon in space, about the fine tuning of the universe, about information stored in DNA, and so forth…..

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