Viewing 40 posts - 201 through 240 (of 283 total)
  • "I am a practising member of the Church of England and so forth"
  • miketually
    Free Member

    the big bang happened.

    Did it? hmmm? Prove it![/quote]

    There’s a huge amount of evidence to support the claim that it did. Physicists are at the “quibbling over the specifics stage”.

    ransos
    Free Member

    I was referring to the statement, the big bang happened.

    It’s a lot easier than writing “it’s the best explanation we have for a range of observed phenomena, including general relativity, cosmic microwave background and the Hubble constant”.

    If you’re still insistent on proof, stick to maths.

    Cougar
    Full Member

    There are alternative theories.

    There are theories, and there are theories. A scientific Theory doesn’t have the same meaning “theory” does in common parlance. It’s not a guess or an idea, but rather it’s the best explanation we have for something based on a lot of work and experience by a lot of clever people.

    Dave down the pub might think that the universe was created by a giant pan-dimensional aardvark who sneezed us into existence two thousand years ago, that may well be a “theory” but it’s not a Theory in the scientific sense.

    If you’ve got any “theories” competing with the Big Bang that are actual scientific theories rather than some faith-based handwaving or the random burbling of a halfwit, I’d like to hear them.

    miketually
    Free Member

    There are alternative theories.

    I don’t think there are any serious alternatives to Big Bang, though whether inflation occurred is still less certain than many people think.

    IIRC, some of the non-inflationary theories get rid of the need for dark energy.

    seosamh77
    Free Member

    miketually – Member
    the big bang happened.

    Did it? hmmm? Prove it!
    There’s a huge amount of evidence to support the claim that it did. Physicists are at the “quibbling over the specifics stage”.as the current understanding. I get the feeling someone will come all one day and blow current perceptions out the water, particularly if we are ever to even get a start on the question of what came before.

    Anyhow. Point is that some people have certainty in their beliefs even in science, when, well science and philosophy actually start to merge once you get so far. I actually think that it’s where religion broke down, well it did thousands of years ago. Religion started off as the speculative side of science and lost its way/got highjacked somewhere along the way. An interesting thought, in these post truth times.

    When I say science in there i mean in a historical sense of pure curiosity and learning.. Not modern day science.

    Cougar
    Full Member

    I get the feeling someone will come all one day and blow current perceptions out the water,

    It’s entirely possible. That’s how science works.

    seosamh77
    Free Member

    I understand how science works! 😆

    miketually
    Free Member

    Someone probably will, but the current models will probably still prove to be useful even then.

    Einstein’s general relativity blew Newton’s explanation of gravity out of the water, but we still use Newton’s model in a large number of applications.

    miketually
    Free Member

    Once current perceptions are blown out of the water, I doubt whatever is discovered will have any bearing on Brexit negotiations.

    Interestingly, former ABoC Rowan Williams was talking about the end of economic growth so God is maybe more in agreement with the Green Party than the Conservatives.

    Northwind
    Full Member

    ransos – Member

    There’s an interesting debate to be had there: story telling/ origin myths are the norm across the planet. Why?

    The desire to fill the void of understanding basically. Exactly the same thing that drives science.

    Why does the sun come up? No idea mate. Wow, what if it doesn’t come up tomorrow? Scary shit dude.

    Why does the sun come up? Well, obviously something moves it… What’s the biggest thing we have? A chariot? Yeah, but a chariot couldn’t pull the sun, it’s too big, and it looks pretty hot. Good point, it’d have to be a special chariot driven by a special bloke. Makes sense. Well that’s a relief, we can count on it coming back.

    (not coincidentally, for quite a lot of human history, it’s been useful to be able to say “I am the head priest, the sun won’t come up again unless you do what I tell you” Even now it’s “Your kids won’t get into the good school unless you join my club”)

    Why does the sun come up? Actually, the earth’s rotating, the sun doesn’t go down, it’s just an illusion caused by the world spinning round. Oh OK, cheers Wayne, that makes more sense than Big Steve in his asbestos chariot.

    The reasoning for stories and discoveries and inventions to fill in the blanks seems pretty straightforward… Sometimes religious people point to the near-ubiquity of creation myths and gods as proof that there must be something but they don’t seem so keen to ask why they’re all so different.

    seosamh77
    Free Member

    Taking it a step back, the important point isn’t about the big bang or cutting edge science. it’s really that the forces of control that I identify where religion went wrong all those years ago are actually at play these days and have been through history. Digging down into science and god. There’s similar forces at work. Ie power lust and control to the detriment of societies progress. Like I say there’s parallels in this post truth society.

    I think the religion point is fairly moot these days. When the likes of trump are fighting against even the survival of the species. People get themselves worked up over this when it’s not really where the focus should be. Ie the focus shouldn’t be on god and the existence or whatever, it’s irrelevant always has been. Focus should be who’s pulling the strings and for what reason.

    Personally I don’t think there’s ever been a truly religious war that doesn’t have power politics, territory and money as it’s driving forces.

    Religion is subterfuge (when looking at it on a larger scale, personally religious feeling I don’t include, well unless you allow yourself to be controlled, then you’re in the realms of the larger scale.).

    molgrips
    Full Member

    There’s an interesting debate to be had there: story telling/ origin myths are the norm across the planet. Why?

    As usual – better minds than the likes of us have devoted many lifetimes to considering these issues rather than a few lunchtime forum posts. A couple of reads:

    I’ve only just started the second one but in the beginning it talks about religion as a means not to simply subjugate people but its very conception being the evolutionary trigger that enabled large-scale co-operation of humans beyond the local tribal group. By giving people a common identity it allowed recognition and commonality even when people didn’t know each other personally. Therefore it may well be the very genesis of ourselves as a . Massively ironic for the atheists on here 🙂

    I suggest you read more 🙂

    colournoise
    Full Member

    Wouldn’t that be a socio-political trigger rather than an evolutionary one?

    footflaps
    Full Member

    Therefore it may well be the very genesis of ourselves as a . Massively ironic for the atheists on here

    Or it may not…

    miketually
    Free Member

    By giving people a common identity it allowed recognition and commonality even when people didn’t know each other personally. Therefore it may well be the very genesis of ourselves as a . Massively ironic for the atheists on here

    The same could be said for racism and xenophobia. Having an ‘other’ to compete with binds groups together.

    Without the Cold War we’d not have has the space race and all the breakthroughs that brought. Wars have hugely progress surgery and medicine.

    That doesn’t make them a good thing that we should seek to promote.

    molgrips
    Full Member

    Therefore it may well be the very genesis of ourselves as a .

    .. as a civilised species, I meant.

    Which would mean that without the idea of religion, we wouldn’t have science. So yes ironic 🙂

    Harari asserts that it was specifically that invention that allowed us to identify with groups larger than about 150 or so. Without it we’d still be hunter gatherers with next to no tech.

    Wouldn’t that be a socio-political trigger rather than an evolutionary one?

    Can you separate biological evolution from social?

    ransos
    Free Member

    I’ve only just started the second one but in the beginning it talks about religion as a means not to simply subjugate people but its very conception being the evolutionary trigger that enabled large-scale co-operation of humans beyond the local tribal group. By giving people a common identity it allowed recognition and commonality even when people didn’t know each other personally.

    Bit of a shaky premise, that. You could equally argue that religion fostering a common identity is what propagated “othering” and subsequent religious conflict. Fighting for domestic resources is understandable in evolutionary terms, travelling abroad to kick the crap out of infidels, not so much.

    Northwind
    Full Member

    molgrips – Member

    I’ve only just started the second one but in the beginning it talks about religion as a means not to simply subjugate people but its very conception being the evolutionary trigger that enabled large-scale co-operation of humans beyond the local tribal group. By giving people a common identity it allowed recognition and commonality even when people didn’t know each other personally. Therefore it may well be the very genesis of ourselves as a . Massively ironic for the atheists on here

    Or, it may not. Self-evidently you don’t need religion to share a common identity- in fact, you can share one despite deep religious divides. And equally self-evidently shared religion doesn’t automatically lead to a shared identity. It’s all very cum hoc even though cum inconveniently fails to hoc sometimes.

    But tbh, I also don’t see any irony even if you accept the premise? I don’t think you’ll ever find an atheist who doesn’t accept that religion has been a big deal and continues to be for some people.

    molgrips
    Full Member

    Or, it may not. Self-evidently you don’t need religion to share a common identity- in fact, you can share one despite religious divides.

    Perhaps I didn’t make myself clear.

    He’s not saying you need religion – but you need the *ability* to have religion. So whatever happened to our brains to support abstract ideas like religion seems to have been significant. But religions were the first such big ideas that we had, which enabled society to then go on and develop other large scale ideas.

    You could equally argue that religion fostering a common identity is what propagated “othering” and subsequent religious conflict.

    Well there’s a couple of chapters devoted to it which I won’t repeat here. But essentially, there’s always ‘us’ and ‘them’, even in apes. But with apes and apparently with early hominids, ‘us’ only refers to the small groups of up to 150 or so that can support personal relationships. Anyone outside your group of 150 is a ‘stranger’, but to consider these strangers as other than enemies, you need another axis. Which religion or other shared cultural traits can provide. He’s arguing that religion is the original such axis, but not the only one of course.

    jambalaya
    Free Member

    I’ve only just started the second one but in the beginning it talks about religion as a means not to simply subjugate people but its very conception being the evolutionary trigger that enabled large-scale co-operation of humans beyond the local tribal group. By giving people a common identity it allowed recognition and commonality even when people didn’t know each other personally. Therefore it may well be the very genesis of ourselves as a . Massively ironic for the atheists on here

    Sums up my view of Religion and it’s derivation as primarily a social code for living together. I see religion leading directly to the establishment of civilisation and the basis of the social and government structures we enjoy today. I have that book on a list to buy.

    Cougar
    Full Member

    Which would mean that without the idea of religion, we wouldn’t have science.

    It’s a shame that it’s not had a similar effect on logic. Just think, if it wasn’t for Alexander G Bell we wouldn’t have telephones.

    It may well be that religion kickstarted science, I don’t know enough about it to validate that claim. But there’s potentially plenty of other ways people could get together and collaborate. It may well be fair to speculate that we wouldn’t be as advanced scientifically as we currently are without religion (or conversely we might even have been further advanced if people like Galileo had been allowed to get on with it), but to suggest that we wouldn’t have science is propogandic piffle.

    footflaps
    Full Member

    ABoC Rowan Williams was talking about the end of economic growth so God is maybe more in agreement with the Green Party than the Conservatives.

    I sincerely hope not, economic growth is supposed to be building up my pension!

    miketually
    Free Member

    ABoC Rowan Williams was talking about the end of economic growth so God is maybe more in agreement with the Green Party than the Conservatives.

    I sincerely hope not, economic growth is supposed to be building up my pension![/quote]

    Sorry, Rowan/God says no.

    Although, the CofE has lots of cash invested in all sorts of companies* so they’re not putting their money where Rowan’s mouth is.

    *including some unpleasant ones

    Cougar
    Full Member

    I see religion leading directly to the establishment of civilisation and the basis of the social and government structures we enjoy today.

    Seemingly, the word for religion in ancient languages is “law,” so you may well be right if we go back far enough.

    From here; I thought this was interesting reading:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Relationship_between_religion_and_science

    The concepts of “science” and “religion” are a recent invention: “religion” emerged in the 17th century in the midst of colonization and globalization and the Protestant Reformation, “science” emerged in the 19th century in the midst of attempts to narrowly define those who studied nature, and the phrase “religion and science” emerged in the 19th century due to the reification of both concepts.

    dumbbot
    Free Member

    Tenuous
    Free Member

    There have been lots of useful evolutionary changes in the brain, that have allowed us to progress and succeed as individuals and as a society. I’m more inclined to think that religion co-opts those useful evolutionary traits, eg obeying your parents helps you survive, but also that mechanism in the brain can be co-opted by religion as ‘Obey god the “father”‘ (or more specifically obey some guy who says he knows what god wants).

    bikebouy
    Free Member

    Almost 8 pages..

    “Altogether now, after me, 1.2.3..1.2.3”

    Northwind
    Full Member

    molgrips – Member

    He’s not saying you need religion – but you need the *ability* to have religion. So whatever happened to our brains to support abstract ideas like religion seems to have been significant. But religions were the first such big ideas that we had, which enabled society to then go on and develop other large scale ideas.

    This theory seems dependent on 2 very shaky concepts

    1) Religion as the first big idea
    2) Religion enabling all other big ideas.

    For the former, I’d say there’s a number of better contenders for that prize. Cooperation, tool making, fire on demand, language, forward planning, the ability to intentionally influence your environment, agriculture, trade… Essentially, the neolithic revolution and everything which led to it, which changed mankind from hunter/gatherers to settlers and builders. This all pre-dates and is a prerequisite of organised religion as we understand it

    And the latter, what’s the justification for that? Humanity develops the capability to develop big ideas but then runs into a wall til it invents religion, and all future big ideas are enabled by religion- rather than by the same capability that enabled religion?

    kimbers
    Full Member

    I’ve only just started the second one but in the beginning it talks about religion as a means not to simply subjugate people but its very conception being the evolutionary trigger that enabled large-scale co-operation of humans beyond the local tribal group.

    Sapiens is a good read, though I dont think he says religion is a trigger just another lie we used on our way to get where we are

    It does struggle from a lack of proper referencing
    and I was a little dissapointed by the lack of genetics 🙁

    It may well be that religion kickstarted science, I don’t know enough about it to validate that claim.

    religion has done far more to hold it back!

    jamj1974
    Full Member

    This is it… Some bolshy atheists seem to be getting upset about this but all there really is for us to be annoyed about, is bog standard Theresa May cynical hypocrisy, and who’s got enough energy to get annoyed every time she does that?

    Me! That’s who!

    The people who’ve got a right to be annoyed are genuine Christians seeing their Lord’s name taken in vain, yet again. Christ wouldn’t vote for this shower, he’d ride up on his velociraptor and hadoken her into the sea. (*)
    (* It’s a while since I went to church, I’m sketchy on the details)

    Disagree. We all have the right to be angered by and to challenge hypocrisy.

    “Altogether now, after me, 1.2.3..1.2.3”

    I’m not going to criticise Theresa May appearance but she does seem to have a huge streak of vanity – in fact miles and miles wide!

    the focus shouldn’t be on god and the existence or whatever, it’s irrelevant always has been. Focus should be who’s pulling the strings and for what reason.

    There is a lot in that I agree with.

    molgrips
    Full Member

    1) Religion as the first big idea
    2) Religion enabling all other big ideas.

    You are confusing concepts. It’s talking about abstract ideas, not specifics like ‘oh why don’t I grab this stone and hit this shell with it’.

    And the latter, what’s the justification for that?

    It’s only £5.49 in the Kindle store.

    Northwind
    Full Member

    molgrips – Member

    You are confusing concepts. It’s talking about abstract ideas, not specifics like ‘oh why don’t I grab this stone and hit this shell with it’.

    I’m not sure you really read my post?

    “Cooperation, tool making, fire on demand, language, forward planning, the ability to intentionally influence your environment, agriculture, trade… Essentially, the neolithic revolution and everything which led to it, which changed mankind from hunter/gatherers to settlers and builders. This all pre-dates and is a prerequisite of organised religion as we understand it”

    and to this you respond “why don’t I grab this stone and hit this shell with it”? That makes no sense.

    The neolithic revolution is essentially the foundation of modern civiliation (in fact it’s turn 1 in Civilisation!). It’s where we see the first organised trade, the first pemanent building and land ownership, the first calendars, astronomy and navigation, the design of complex tools and transport, alphabet, division of labour, social class and hierarchies… and the creation and spread of the first organised religions. It didn’t happen because of religion, and it’s certainly not a smaller idea than religion, nor is it comparable to primitive, improvised tool use. It happened because we figured out how to live and survive and thrive in big groups and how to make the world work for us rather than just existing in it.

    TBH the more I write the sillier the concept of religion as the “first big idea” seems, let alone the idea that it facilitated the development of all others. it’s just one of dozens of big ideas that happened at around the same time, all spinning out of the same developments. Are you sure you understood it correctly?

    molgrips
    Full Member

    I’m not sure you really read my post?

    Oh perhaps I did. I thought you were equating specific ideas with abstract ones.

    However I am not sure that this is true:

    This all pre-dates and is a prerequisite of organised religion as we understand it”

    I’m not talking about organised religion. I’m talking about abstract ideas like world creator spirits and so on. Which would pre-date ‘civilisation’ as you have defined it, I’d imagine.

    jambalaya
    Free Member

    Religion formulated and created a social code. If you put to one side Creation and some of the other (imo understandable at the time) but very dated things like homosexuality being an abomination and focus on the social code aspects and then understand that these texts are founded 3 or 4,000 years ago that’s pretty incredible.

    With such an organised society the human race would not have prospered and we would not have had the environment for science that has existed.

    Without derailing the thread I am very slightly surprised the nay-sayers haven’t pointed out the author is Israeli and Professor at a Hebrew University having graduated from Oxford

    Northwind
    Full Member

    molgrips – Member

    I’m not talking about organised religion. I’m talking about abstract ideas like world creator spirits and so on.

    How does something so abstract give people a common identity? You can’t on the one hand say “you’re confusing abstracts with specifics” then on the other talk about the applied version of this abstract concept as if it’s the same thing (especially when we have no idea if such concepts were prevalent)

    jambalaya – Member

    Without derailing the thread I am very slightly surprised the nay-sayers haven’t pointed out the author is Israeli and Professor at a Hebrew University having graduated from Oxford

    What the actual ****?

    edenvalleyboy
    Free Member

    @jambayla…you’d best give yourself forty lashes for speaking out against your glorious leader. Or have you finally seen reason 😀

    seosamh77
    Free Member

    jambalaya – Member

    Without derailing the thread I am very slightly surprised the nay-sayers haven’t pointed out the author is Israeli and Professor at a Hebrew University having graduated from Oxfordthat’s some top quality bait right there! 😆

    kimbers
    Full Member

    Must resists the troll……..

    kimbers
    Full Member

    As has been demonstrated many times altruism is seen throughout nature, where presumably religion is not a factor.

    I’m eagerly awaiting the explanation for ‘homosexuality being an abomination’ being understandable at the time…..

    5thElefant
    Free Member

    Religion formulated and created a social code.

    Then atheists took it apart and we became civilised. Or we were heading that way.

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