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Re: Citation?

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  • nsarwark
    ... is the ... why they ... account. ... say, but ... How does a panentheist view of God answer the why question differently than the scientific answer
    Message 1 of 91 , Jan 3, 2007
      --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, "Keith Seddon" <K.H.S@...> wrote:
      > Hello Nick,
      > I suddenly recalled that I had not replied to you...
      > : This is a remarkably strong claim about the nature of God. You're
      > : essentially claiming that God (a) has no physical manifestation
      > : whatsoever that can be detected by present experimental methods and
      > : tools and (b) that there will not be in the future any methods or
      > : tools that can detect God.
      > As a Stoic, I do think that God has a physical manifestation. This
      is the
      > universe itself, and all the processes that unfold within its history.
      > Science is good for finding accounts of how things happen, but not
      why they
      > happen. Any attempt at a why explanation will collapse into a how
      > A scientist will tell us how strong the charge is on an electron,
      say, but
      > cannot explain why it has this charge.
      > The notion that there could (one day) be an experimental procedure for
      > proving the existence of God (or otherwise) would require science to be
      > something very different from what it actually is.

      How does a panentheist view of God answer the "why" question
      differently than the scientific answer ("That's what it is.")?

      As to proving the existence of God scientifically, all it requires is
      a definition of what would be different if there was not a God (or
      logos). My understanding is that the pan(en)theist God does not posit
      any difference in the perceived universe in the way that the active,
      personal God of the monotheistic religions does.

      > : What is the utility of postulating a being that is entirely
      > : non-physical and will never have any physical interaction with the
      > : world that can be experimentally verified?
      > This question doesn't make any sense to someone like me, a
      panentheist Stoic
      > (perhaps), who believes that the physical universe *is* God.

      If the physical universe is God, then I believe in God too. Everybody
      does. Defining God as an already extant and accepted phenomenon (the
      physical universe) makes your claim non-falsifiable, but also
      functionally useless.

      > The question of
      > the non-physical interacting with the physical does not arise. Tho I
      > the problem is proving difficult for science: does not the scientist
      > that the non-physical interacts with the physical? Magnetic fields,
      > gravity... Move a magnet underneath a piece of card sprinkled with iron
      > filings and then explain to the child who is watching in awe that this
      > involves only physical things, and nothing non-physical.

      Magnetic fields are part of the physical laws of the universe and not
      that difficult to explain, even to children. What is the non-physical
      that you suggest interacts with the physical?

      > : You're watching an alleged medium on a television show (with a large
      > : production staff) and you consider a completely undetectable
      > : communication with the spirit world to be less preposterous than the
      > : idea that the alleged medium is using the production staff gathering
      > : information and well-documented cold reading techniques to stage it?
      > : How is this view in accord with reason?
      > Yes indeed. The view that the medium is genuine is the most
      reasonable one.

      Assertion is not argument.

      > If you think the whole thing is staged, then the onus is on you to
      prove it.

      False. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. There is no
      known mechanism for spiritual mediums to work and all scientific
      investigations into those claims have previously come up false. If
      Colin Fry is the exception, there's a $1 million prize awaiting him at
      http://www.jref.org .

      > My guess is that any such attempt will come unstuck when you try to
      > how fraudulent researchers can find out things revealed by the
      spirit person
      > that the living recipient of the message declares they told to no one.

      Again, no verifiable instances of spirit communication have been
      found, but many verifiable instances of lying have been. Parsimony
      requires the simpler explanation be accepted absent proof.

      > would then have no choice but to move to a mega-hoax theory in which
      > the recipients of the spirit communications are fraudulent, or everyone
      > involved is an actor happy to defraud the viewing public. That would be
      > preposterous. And it would soon enough be exposed.
      > You have obviously not seen Colin Fry. The charge of cold-reading
      > is laughable in his case. He is invariable precise and specific.

      Well, he's been caught before in a fraud at a seance. See here:

      Further reason to suspect fraud this time around.

      Yours truly,
    • Joe Wells
      Yes, I am telling you that I was not angry when I refered to the implications of your straw man as being ignorant. It was not threatening enough to make me
      Message 91 of 91 , Jan 24, 2007
        Yes, I am telling you that I was not angry when I
        refered to the implications of your straw man as being
        ignorant. It was not threatening enough to make me
        angry. Nor are your insulting words about my supposed
        panties (although Seneca is certainly right about the
        impulse toward anger) enough to really anger me.

        To use two logcial fallicies (straw man and slippery
        slope) to defend any position is ignorant. Especially
        when you are attempting to deny the ability of a
        person to have both meaning and ethics without some
        deity. For too many people have clung to too many
        blatantly bigoted and superstitious viewpoints for
        just this reason (without God there is no good) for
        far too long.

        It is quite easy to derive ethics from the world
        around us without appeal to deity. For instance, the
        implications of the non-locality of the universe means
        that all systems are equally important. That means
        that the system known as Joe is equal to the system
        known as Mark and equal to all other such systems.
        This is a very impactful ethical implication of the
        universe and I didn't mention god once.

        I am sorry that you find yourself convinced of my
        "jerkdom", but I feel the need to stick firmly to my
        positon on this issue.
        --- Uncle Fester <mtravis9999@...> wrote:

        > Joe, are you trying to tell me that you are able to
        > refer to somebody's ideas as ignorant and offensive
        > without being angry? Because it really seemed to me
        > like your little panties got all bunched up at the
        > *straw man* that I created. I created a *straw man*
        > religious person's argument--that you set on fire.
        > You can tell that I intentionally created a straw
        > man by reading my post--the part where I say that I
        > was creating a "man of straw". Interestingly, I
        > don't notice a single logical argument from you
        > refuting this straw man. Just argument by
        > intimidation. And your anectodal evidence (gee, I
        > know ethical people who think just like I do who are
        > more ethical than people who don't think like I do!)
        > isn't too convincing either.
        > The reason that I created the straw man was because
        > that type of viewpoint is the most plausible reason
        > in my mind for somebody to viscerally reject
        > materialism. I believe that some people who reject
        > materialism do so because of what they believe to be
        > its moral consequences. If you notice, I did not
        > make any attempt at proving this position. I
        > brought it up solely to identify it as a set of
        > beliefs which people engaged in topics about
        > materialism on this mail list *might* hold.
        > Your arguments have convinced me that you're a
        > jerk--and I can't imagine that they'll positively
        > sway somebody who actually believes in the religious
        > believes which I was attempting to illuminate.
        > Joe Wells <psycherationis@...> wrote:
        > Mark,
        > I was not angry when I wrote my response. To
        > equate
        > atheism with moral turpitude is simply illogical.
        > In
        > fact it has been used by some to discourage people
        > from removing the scales from their eyes. Because
        > if
        > we know that the Earth moves around the Sun it
        > punches
        > a big whole in our idea of God's plan (key word
        > "our")
        > and it wil increase atheism which makes people
        > "bad".
        > If fact the atheists I know are typically more
        > ethical
        > in their behaviour then those who claim to follow a
        > diety. I will not apologize for my statement
        > because
        > it is true.
        > Joe
        > --- Uncle Fester <mtravis9999@...> wrote:
        > > Thank you, Steve. Refining those definitions is
        > > helpful. I wasn't trying to be controversial
        > with
        > > my slippery slope. Dostoyevsky and Camus come to
        > > mind (Crime & Punishment & The Stranger) as
        > having
        > > articulated and explored those themes. Namely,
        > > science/reality disproves/disposes of God,
        > leaving
        > > us without meaning. Go ahead and kill somebody
        > if
        > > it seems like the thing to do. And obviously
        > > Nietzsche trode that patch of ground. Whether
        > you
        > > believe in materialism or not (or God or not) [or
        > > meaning or not] {or transcendent ethics or not},
        > > those things interface. And I'm not aware of
        > their
        > > optimal configuration. What might Stoicism
        > offer?
        > >
        > >
        > > Steve Marquis <marquis@...> wrote:
        > >
        > > Mark,
        > >
        > > To be consistent with my penchant for
        > complicating
        > > things I'll add
        > > the following definitions from `Philosophy Made
        > > Simple':
        > >
        > > Dual-Aspect:
        > >
        > > Mind and body are both aspects of the same
        > entity,
        > > namely God,
        > > Substance, or Nature.
        > >
        > > Materialism:
        > >
        > > . . . a modified Cartesianism, eliminating mind,
        > > and possibly God,
        > > from the basic metaphysical scheme, and
        > attempting
        > > to explain
        > > everything in terms of material events.
        > >
        > > Naturalism:
        > >
        > > . . . all the features of the universe can be
        > > explained or accounted
        > > for in natural or experiential terms.
        > > . . .
        > > Naturalism can allow for the employment of any
        > of
        > > the concepts that
        > > arise from our study of nature and experience,
        > and
        > > not merely the
        > > concepts of physical science.
        > > . . .
        > >
        > > Some naturalistic theories develop some of the
        > > suggestive leads of
        > > Stoic metaphysics, in conceiving of the natural
        > and
        > > experiential
        > > order as having a dynamic, emergent feature,
        > which
        > > brings forth new
        > > facets in nature in the course of time. Such a
        > > natural dynamisism
        > > would account for, these naturalists believe,
        > the
        > > evolutionary
        > > character of our natural knowledge, without
        > > appealing to any
        > > supernatural agency.
        > >
        > > Pantheism:
        > >
        > > God is not a separate being, but is either then
        > > entire natural order
        > > or an aspect of the entire natural order.
        > Either
        > > the universe as a
        > > whole is God, or the power or force that
        > pervades
        > > the whole of the
        > > cosmos is God. God is everywhere, and is
        > > everything, or is in
        > > everything.
        > > ___________
        > >
        > > The only comment I'll make is from the above
        > > definition of
        > > materialism it is clear the Stoics could not
        > have
        > > easily been
        > > materialists except this bit about only
        > `possibly'
        > > eliminating God.
        > > Stoicism may not neatly fit into one of our
        > later
        > > philosophical
        > > boxes. Pantheistic Naturalists maybe.
        > >
        > > That Descartes fellow sure mucked things up.
        > >
        > > Live well,
        > > Steve
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > ---------------------------------
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