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Old 02-22-2001, 02:58 PM   #1
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Smile The World of the Atheist

A Christian friend said :-

It never seems as important to prove that their alternative possibility is the correct solution, simply that there is an alternative
possibility.

In their world, an alternate to the Bible solution automatically negates the very possibility that the Biblical solution should
be considered as an option.

Even when these extra-Biblical alternatives are only theoretical in nature, or when the chance of that possibility being the actual solution in that particular case ranges from statistically unlikely to impossible, their solution is still preferable to considering that the Bible might be correct.

Is this true?

Blessings and Peace

Hilarius

 
Old 02-22-2001, 03:15 PM   #2
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Hilarius:
Even when these extra-Biblical alternatives are only theoretical in nature, or when the chance of that possibility being the actual solution in that particular case ranges from statistically unlikely to impossible, their solution is still preferable to considering that the Bible might be correct.
</font>
I think you suffer from a persecution complex. Almost every atheist on this forum is not attacking the bible, but rather the notion that the bible reflects reality. Science, even the contraversial parts, do a fine job of investigating reality. One of the central premises is that you don't add things to the description that is not needed. Complexity of a problem increases nonlinearly with the number of variables involved. God has never been needed by science, therefore, there's no reason to add him to our equations until we have a need to.
You can set up all of the scenarios in which god caused things to happen, but those explanations will always be inferior to an equally predictive explanation without god, simply because god adds complexity that is not needed.
Notice a common phrase in that paragraph, "not needed". I hope I'm not being to presumptious when I say that most of the atheists here maintain and epistemologic position that god is not needed to explain *anything* more strongly than the ontological position on his non-existance.
 
Old 02-22-2001, 03:19 PM   #3
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I think this is an excellent application for "Occam's Razor." When two competing hypothesis explain the data equally well, choose the simplest.

If we are only talking about theoretical solutions (say, to moral problems), the Bible's solutions are made extremely complex by its contradictions.

Another aspect to this is an adherence to that which can be empirically verified. If one supernatural and baseless explanation can be applied, why not an infinite number of others? Why not Thor, instead of Jesus, who is responsible for X. Because there is no more evidence for a Biblical solution as there is for a Pink Unicorn solution, it is impossible to verify that the Biblical solution is the correct one. The very nature of faith and supernatural explanations keep them from being empirically verifiable, and are therefore rendered useless.
 
Old 02-22-2001, 04:09 PM   #4
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It would be interesting to apply Hilarius's reasoning to other religions -- it would imply that a lot of other religions are true.
 
Old 02-22-2001, 09:31 PM   #5
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I have to agree with something nialscorva said, Hilarius. The Bible simply doesn't reflect reality. It is therefore not worth taking seriously.
 
Old 02-22-2001, 10:27 PM   #6
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Question

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by nialscorva:

Science, even the contraversial parts, do a fine job of investigating reality.</font>
Does this statement mean that science is the only useful means by which we can "know" reality?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">God has never been needed by science, therefore, there's no reason to add him to our equations until we have a need to.</font>
Umm... has science actually "proved" this assertion?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">You can set up all of the scenarios in which god caused things to happen, but those explanations will always be inferior to an equally predictive explanation without god, simply because god adds complexity that is not needed. </font>
While your faith in science is admirable, I think a little more humility is in order here. I think any serious scientist is going to admit that there are questions, even important questions that science will never answer, largely because science was never meant to answer them.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Notice a common phrase in that paragraph, "not needed". I hope I'm not being to presumptious when I say that most of the atheists here maintain and epistemologic position that god is not needed to explain *anything* more strongly than the ontological position on his non-existance.</font>
I think a test of a few examples might be in order if you are actually going to prove this hypothesis. Would you allow me to choose the question to be examined by your "scientific method", or would you insist on doing so yourself?

Just curious.

Nomad
 
Old 02-22-2001, 10:53 PM   #7
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One thing you wrote struck me, Nomad.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Nomad:
I think any serious scientist is going to admit that there are questions, even important questions that science will never answer, largely because science was never meant to answer them. </font>
Well how do we determine what is an important question and what isn't? Wouldn't that be an entirely individual and subjective thing? Most of the questions I've heard put forth that are "important" that science doesn't answer (Why are we here, etc.) I consider largely irrelevant. However, other questions you and I may find irrelevant (Which burger should I order?) are also unanswerable by science. None of this, though, invalidates science as our best and most reliable method for learning about the world around us.
 
Old 02-22-2001, 10:59 PM   #8
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Nomad: Post your questions you believe science cannot answer, but please stick to people/things/events rather than morality/values/beliefs/opinions, which tend to be subjective rather than objective, as most scientific inquiries need to be/tend to be.

Regrds,
Bob K.
 
Old 02-22-2001, 11:51 PM   #9
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OK, let's think about lightning again.

According to science, lightning rods are very good protection against lightning.

According to some "other ways of knowing", ringing church bells is very good protection against lightning.

Guess which one performed better.
 
Old 02-23-2001, 07:16 PM   #10
Ernest Sparks
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Ringing church bells might very well be effective in gaining protection from lightning. If you have church bells, lots of them, and in church bell towers, they might provide a channel for discharging and avoid hitting the lower level houses. Of course, you might have to replace bell ringers, or discover that ringing them was an unnecessary act, but I doubt anyone checked that carefully.

Ernie
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