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Re: [Synoptic-L] Inductive argument and Baysian statistics

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  • Bob Schacht
    ... There is no barrier to probability theory here, except in the formulation of a sound basis for it. There is also no need to be patronizing. ... This
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 3, 2006
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      At 06:43 AM 3/3/2006, Gentile, David wrote:
      >It has come to my attention that the form of my recent argument may be
      >completely foreign to those trained in biblical studies. (As some terms
      >used by biblical scholars still are to me)
      >
      >I know biblical students learn inductive argument, but I am now guessing
      >that Bayesian analysis, or a connection between inductive logic and
      >probability is not (generally) part of the curriculum.

      There is no barrier to probability theory here, except in the formulation
      of a sound basis for it.
      There is also no need to be patronizing.

      >Bayesian probability is about subjective mental probability assessments
      >(or better yet the justified certainty a robot or computer correctly
      >programmed could have about a given truth claim).

      This characterization seems to consist primarily of words loosely thrown
      around. I have some familiarity with Bayes' theorem, and some others on the
      list do, as well. Your description of Bayesian probability does not seem
      satisfactory to me.

      >Without that background, my recent argument may have been completely
      >misunderstood.

      And with that background, your recent argument is likely to be met with the
      skepticism that you have encountered.

      >My recent salt argument runs like this -
      >
      >Produce an inductive argument for a pattern in Mark. Show that my
      >reading of salt would strengthen that inductive argument.

      "Show" and "strengthen" are key words in this statement, and it doesn't
      seem to me that you have done either.

      >Form a new completely separate inductive argument for a different
      >pattern in Mark, again show that my reading of salt would strengthen
      >that inductive argument.

      See above.

      >Repeat as often as possible.

      Compounding a mistake does not undo the mistake.

      >Each time my reading fits and strengthens one of those inductive
      >arguments, (better than a competing reading), our justified assessment
      >of the probable truth of the reading must increase.

      See above.

      >This is a Bayesian probability argument.
      >
      >Does this information help anyone understand what I was trying to say?

      A little; but you've mainly failed to "show" and "strengthen," and that's
      why you're not making any headway.

      Bob
      Robert M. Schacht, Ph.D.
      University of Hawaii
      Honolulu, HI

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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