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#15636 - 10/20/06 06:17 AM God & science
samwik Offline
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So trilobytes, does God like science?

Regardless of my belief in that overwhelming supremeness, so incredibly deep and pervasive, enveloping with comfort, solace and awe; from under the center to beyond the edge of everything including truth, intention, wisdom, and love; and still regardless of any faith, I can appreciate the tool that science is; the tool that brings the outside in to my comprehension coherently, the tool that allows for discovery and invention, the tool that facilitates a sharing and wonder, forever expanding, and the tool that every day makes our lives more possible. I can revel in and enjoy science, regardless.

~Samwik
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Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15637 - 10/20/06 07:03 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Wow, I can't believe I posted this before the Colbert Report's interview at the end of the show. I didn't catch the name of the guy, but it was about science & religion. It wasn't that great of a presentation, but I could see what he was trying to do.

I wish Stephen had taken the guy up on his offer to trade his Nobel Prize for two weeks of taking over the show to make science more understandable to the public.

~~Samwik

P.S. I guess there is a difference between God and religion. As for religion and science:

Isn?t religion just a way of taking our understanding of God and making it meaningful in the outside world, making it manifest; and isn?t science just a way of taking the outside world and making it understandable, making it meaningful. Does one preclude the other? ~S
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#15638 - 10/20/06 06:40 PM Re: God & science
trilobyte Offline
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Registered: 08/12/06
Posts: 179
Does God like science?

YES

Does God like what the evos are doing with his science?

NOPE.

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#15639 - 10/20/06 07:51 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Registered: 10/10/06
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Quote:
Originally posted by trilobyte:
Does God like science?

YES

Does God like what the evos are doing with his science?

NOPE.
So why not? How is what "evo's" do any different from what physicist's do. They are just using a tool to look around in a systematic way.

For instance, Einstein's relativity theories aren't "truth," but as tools they do approximate reality very closely; close enough to be very useful in making predictions in our everyday world. And if it's not a close enough approximation, then there are lots of scientists anxious to point out any problems.
Similarly, as Darwin's evolution theory is not any absolute truth, it still functions well as a tool to help us predict, as well as helping us communicate ideas in a common framework and helping us organize our own understanding.
Einstein's theories still work, even if they might be totally wrong about the universe being over 4000 years old. Evolution still works well as a tool for us to use, even if it might be totally wrong about some of its basic assumptions. That's why it's called a theory.
Thanks,
~Samwik
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#15640 - 10/20/06 08:01 PM Re: God & science
TheFallibleFiend Offline
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Straight from God's brain to TB's fingertips.

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#15641 - 10/20/06 08:02 PM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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TB wrote:
"Does God like what the evos are doing with his science?"

And you know this how?

Did she tell you this by email? text message? wrote it on the inside of a box of breakfast cereal?

Please be specific.
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#15642 - 10/21/06 10:39 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Re:
Quote:
Originally posted by trilobyte:
Does God like science?
YES

Does God like what the evos are doing with his science?
NOPE.
So why not? How is what "evo's" do any different from what physicist's or climatologist's do.... [see above post].... Theories and models aren't reality, they're just tools.

I?ve been anxiously looking for a response. Hopefully?.
~samwik
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#15643 - 10/22/06 03:53 AM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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God must love science and scientists ... after all she made so many of us.

But what is most hillarious about TB's question is that the first time TB gets an earache you just know his mommy is running him straight to the doctor's office for one of those antibiotics discovered by scientists that worship at the alter of the church of evolution and were not discovered by a member of the clergy or written about, even once, in a holy book.

Imagine that ... god gave us scientists the ability to discover penicillin and didn't even give it to his only son, or the pope, or a bishop, or a carindal, or any other theologian. That pretty much indicates in whom she puts her trust eh.

ROFLOL!
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#15644 - 10/22/06 12:38 PM Re: God & science
trilobyte Offline
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There are many reasons why the T.O.E. is derived differently than main stream science. In fact evolutionism could easily be considered as psuedo science.

The evos use circular reasoning...such as, did you ever notice how the evolutionist point to the similarities and claim they have the evidence that shows descent with modification was derived from a common ancestor.
In other words the similaraties show they are homologus...the homologies show they are descended from a common ancestor....the descention from a common ancestor is the reason for the similaraties....the similaraties show they are homologus..and round and round it goes.
Then the speculative assumptions continue. There is the claim of a slow transition between species forming a new genera that eventually becomes classified as a new family. But there is this nagging GAP problem produced by the lack of transitional fossils. So what do the evos do? The answer is simple. They fill in the large gaps with bias, imagination and plenty of plaster of paris. Speculative assumptions is passed as FACT, then force fed to our children as truth...why would God like that bad science? The speculations presented as truth? The lies?
Then again the evos god is the father of lies.

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#15645 - 10/22/06 03:33 PM Re: God & science
TheFallibleFiend Offline
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"There are many reasons why the T.O.E. is derived differently than main stream science."
It isn't "derived" any more differently from the other sciences than the others are derived differently from each other.

"In fact evolutionism could easily be considered as psuedo science."
Only among those who are ignorant of both evolution and science.

"The evos use circular reasoning..."
What I notice is that you don't understand the argument.

"But there is this nagging GAP problem produced by the lack of transitional fossils."
There aren't as many as we would like, but there are PLENTY of transitional fossils!

And guess what -- when they fill in the gap with what they think is there, they often later find something in the record that looks just like it! Now THAT'S a confirmation of evolution!

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#15646 - 10/22/06 05:48 PM Re: God & science
soilguy Offline
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Registered: 09/28/05
Posts: 414
Loc: North Carolina
Quote:
Originally posted by trilobyte:
There are many reasons why the T.O.E. is derived differently than main stream science. In fact evolutionism could easily be considered as psuedo science.

The evos use circular reasoning...such as, did you ever notice how the evolutionist point to the similarities and claim they have the evidence that shows descent with modification was derived from a common ancestor.
In other words the similaraties show they are homologus...the homologies show they are descended from a common ancestor....the descention from a common ancestor is the reason for the similaraties....the similaraties show they are homologus..and round and round it goes.
Bzzzzt! Hard though it may be to believe, Trilobyte is wrong. A possible reason for homologous structures is the hypothesis of descent with modification. That hypothesis makes predictions about what we should find in:

a. the fossil record, and
b. comparing the genomes of closely related and distantly related creatures.

(It makes other predictions, as well, but these are two of the biggies.)

Do we find transitional fossils between apparently related (based on body structures) creatures? You bet -- as predicted by the TOE. Do we find that the genomes of similarly structured creatures are also similar to each other? You bet -- as predicted by the TOE.

The TOE is a useful theory because its predictions are accurate. Creationism is a useless hypothesis, because it predicts NOTHING.

Circular reasoning goes like this:

Q: Is the Bible the word of God?

A: Yes. It says so in the Bible.
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--S. Lewis

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#15647 - 10/22/06 06:34 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Thanks for the thoughtful response! I'll write more later, but for now.... I think you're confusing circular reasoning with internal consistency (something theories strive for). Circular reasoning can be pointed out in most theories, but only if you look at the foundation or basic assumptions of a theory. For instance, atomic theory assumes that atoms exist. Measurements of an atom can be made, so atoms must exist; if they didn't exist, how could they be measured? Another example is the assumption that the speed of light is constant. We observe time slow down as things speed up, so the assumption looks "right." If the assumption is "right," then we should expect time to slow; but a better explanation may come along later.
This is a characteristic for all theories as well as religions too, I think. We have to make basic assumptions in order to have more complex ideas.

I do disagree with your statement: "Speculative assumptions is passed as FACT...."
Speculative assumptions such as "Does God like what the evos are doing with his science?
NOPE."

Well, sorry, guess my point is that science is always ready to see old "facts" explained away by some new "facts." ...and if that is true, then were these ever really "facts?"
As you use "FACT," I think you're referring to "reality." When science uses "fact," they mean a basic idea or observation which hasn't been refuted (despite many attempts), YET.

Science speculates, and science assumes facts (until disproven), but speculating facts is not science. In the heat of the moment, people refer to 'facts," but if you pin a scientist down on the matter, they should agree that their facts are provisional; that they are only facts within the context of the theory to which they pertain.

I'm probably overstating (or even wrongly stating) this point, but I'm trying to convey that science is not "set in stone." It is not reality, it is just a method or tool helpful in understanding and organizing our perception of reality.

I'll try for a better response later, but for now let me try to illustrate my point by saying that I believe both the theories of relativity and of evolution are NOT "true." But I can still use these theories to help me explain, understand, and talk about reality. Similarly, I don't think any religion is "true," but I could still use religion to try to understand or talk about God.

Thanks again; more later?
~Samwik
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#15648 - 10/22/06 08:52 PM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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Please stop feeding the troll.
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#15649 - 10/22/06 09:39 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Registered: 10/10/06
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Sorry DA, but I?m enjoying this more-or-less philosophical discussion about the nature of meaning, understanding, and reality. I see a difference between this thread and a feeding frenzy over some particular facts (observations, data).
~SA
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Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15650 - 10/22/06 11:29 PM Re: God & science
trilobyte Offline
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Registered: 08/12/06
Posts: 179
Quote:
Originally posted by TheFallibleFiend:


And guess what -- when they fill in the gap with what they think is there, they often later find something in the record that looks just like it! Now THAT'S a confirmation of evolution!
Do you have a reference for your above statement or did you post it because you thought it sounded good?

Do tell us how it confirms evolutionism.

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#15651 - 10/22/06 11:36 PM Re: God & science
trilobyte Offline
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Registered: 08/12/06
Posts: 179
soilguy posted:
comparing the genomes of closely related and distantly related creatures.

What the similar genomes tells us is that a common creator used common "part" when the creator made the different kinds.

Your statement certainly isn't a fact. Just speculative assumption...often passed off as fact to the unsuspecting.

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#15652 - 10/22/06 11:41 PM Re: God & science
trilobyte Offline
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Registered: 08/12/06
Posts: 179
samwik posted:
Well, sorry, guess my point is that science is always ready to see old "facts" explained away by some new "facts." ...and if that is true, then were these ever really "facts?"

It's time to once again change your "facts".
For example T-Rex soft tissue was found...we all know soft tissue can't last for 65+ MY's...so it is obvious the dinosaurs went extinct recently....time to change your "facts"

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#15653 - 10/23/06 12:13 AM Re: God & science
TheFallibleFiend Offline
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You've never heard of archaeopteryx?

What about the fossil fish belowmentioned here:
http://www.biologynews.net/archives/2006..._evolution.html

Try getting out of the trailer park and you'll learn all kinds of things.

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#15654 - 10/23/06 12:18 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Loc: Colorado
wow, hold on a minute. re: all the other posts.

trilobyte, you wrote: "Do tell us how it confirms evolutionism."


Regarding the semantics of the word ?confirmed?

Yes, you are right; I think it is scientifically self-righteous to claim a theory is ever ?confirmed.? It would be more appropriate to say a particular theory is ?supported? by a particular finding (discovery, observation, or result). A finding gives more support to, or lends more credence to a theory. When a finding ?confirms? a prediction made by a theory, then that theory is given more weight (it?s more useful as a tool).

A scientist is human too; and will often overstate the case.


For instance, observing that clocks slow down when we shoot them up in rockets, confirms a prediction of Einstein?s relativity theory, but it can?t be said to confirm the theory as fact. But everyone runs around saying it proves relativity. It only confirms the theory is still valid (it works), not that the theory is true.

~Samantics
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#15655 - 10/23/06 12:30 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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How'd this page get so wide & hard to read.
Maybe a hard return in that fossil-find link above would help.
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#15656 - 10/23/06 12:46 AM Re: God & science
TheFallibleFiend Offline
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Of course it confirms the theory. Confirmation is not proof. Look at definition 2 at http://m-w.com/dictionary/confirm

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#15657 - 10/23/06 01:46 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Registered: 10/10/06
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Loc: Colorado
Quote:
Originally posted by trilobyte:
samwik posted:
Well, sorry, guess my point is that science is always ready to see old "facts" explained away by some new "facts." ...and if that is true, then were these ever really "facts?"

It's time to once again change your "facts".
For example T-Rex soft tissue was found...we all know soft tissue can't last for 65+ MY's...so it is obvious the dinosaurs went extinct recently....time to change your "facts"
Hiya trilobyte, you brought up the word FACT first; and I was asking you a question about your use of the word when I quoted your, ?Speculative assumptions is passed as FACT.?

You then quoted my sentence [above] talking about ?facts,? but that sentence only introduced my next 2 sentences: ?As you use "FACT," I think you're referring to "reality." When science uses "fact," they mean a basic idea or observation that hasn't been refuted (despite many attempts), YET. ?samwik

I guess I didn?t ask that in the form of a question, but by saying, ?I think you?re referring to?.? I?m asking for any correction.

So, do you agree that the word fact gets used differently?

~Samore semantics


P.S. As for finding 65Mya soft tissue, I?d argue the ?fact? that soft tissue can?t last that long, needs to be thrown out (or at least looked into).

P.P.S. I'm gonna go look up confirm & confirmation now.

Thanks,
~S
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Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15658 - 10/23/06 01:50 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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TFF, can you edit your fish fossil link (put in a "hard return" halfway along) to see if this page gets back to regular size? Maybe it's just my computer, but....
Thanks,
~Samwik
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#15659 - 10/23/06 02:33 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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That's the fact; now to confirm.
TFF, I thought I'd written that all for nought, but....

I think a scientist should use the word ?verify? instead of ?confirm? when talking about a theory. Verify was on the list of synonyms from that dictionary link and it seemed the most appropriate. Confirm #2 (strengthen) seems like a pretty rare usage to me. Confirm #4 (remove doubt)(& my dictionary says -prove) seems more common, and that is how I was using it above in saying something can ?confirm a prediction,? but not a theory.

As soilguy pointed out, ?The TOE is a useful theory because its predictions are accurate.?

So far?.

~samwik
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#15660 - 10/23/06 03:10 AM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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Scientists know the meaning of the words they use. It is not for them to dumb down the language for the laypublic.

Rather it is for the laypublic to stop relishing their willful ignorance.

When the person that discovers a new antibiotic is honored as much as a sports hero then society will have taken the first step toward demonstrating what is most important.
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#15661 - 10/23/06 04:11 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Loc: Colorado
To continue the discussion, I just want to make sure we're using the same definitions for these fundamental words.
~samantics
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#15662 - 10/23/06 08:01 AM Re: God & science
terrytnewzealand Offline
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Loc: Whangarei New Zealand
Trilobyte. Could you please inform us precisely where where you believe there is a missing link on the evolutionary line between apes and humans.

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#15663 - 10/23/06 08:15 AM Re: God & science
terrytnewzealand Offline
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DA wrote:

When the person that discovers a new antibiotic is honored as much as a sports hero then society will have taken the first step toward demonstrating what is most important.

Agreed. But my favourite from Dean Swift:

And he gave it for his opinion, that whoever could make two ears of corn, or two blades of grass, to grow upon a spot of ground where only one grew before, would deserve better of mankind, and do more essential service to his country, than the whole race of politicians put together.

Soilguy. You know why the page got wider? Evolution.

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#15664 - 10/23/06 01:05 PM Re: God & science
soilguy Offline
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Registered: 09/28/05
Posts: 414
Loc: North Carolina
Quote:
Originally posted by terrytnewzealand:
Trilobyte. Could you please inform us precisely where where you believe there is a missing link on the evolutionary line between apes and humans.
Terry, Terry, Terry. Over the years of arguing with members of the He-man Science-haters Club, it dawned on me that every transitional fossil found to fill a "gap" in the fossil record actually opens up two NEW gaps -- one on either side of the latest transitional fossil find.
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#15665 - 10/23/06 01:08 PM Re: God & science
soilguy Offline
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Registered: 09/28/05
Posts: 414
Loc: North Carolina
Quote:
Originally posted by trilobyte:
What the similar genomes tells us is that a common creator used common "part" when the creator made the different kinds.
But creationism doesn't predict that. It predicts nothing. If the genomes of similar looking creatures were very different from each other, that would "satisfy" creationism just as much as similar genomes.

This is how creationism fails as a scientific hypothesis. It cannot be refuted. On the other hand, evolution WOULD be refuted if the genomes of similar creatures were very different.
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When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
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#15666 - 10/23/06 04:18 PM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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Terry ... soilguy is correct. I too have pointed this fact out in this forum. But I still think your question has value as TB has no answer.

But I think, far better, is to stop feeding the troll. Perhaps then he will crawl back under his rock.

Too bad the moderators don't see their job as one of promoting science rather than just being the "nice" police.
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#15667 - 10/23/06 07:25 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Loc: Colorado
No, please keep this thread.
After we understand the definitions of words like ?facts,? I?m expecting to talk about science?s place in the grand scheme of things. Any thoughts on that #5 definition?

back to fact:
the dictionary link above provides an answer:

#5 : ?a piece of information presented as having objective reality?

is how science speaks of facts that form the foundation of a theory.

vs.

#3 : ?the quality of being actual?
#4 a : ?something that has actual existence?
#4 b : ?an actual occurrence?

which are the common usages; as well as being used scientifically (as when observations are made, results gathered, etc.) to lend support or falsify a theory.

To me the phrase ?information presented as? is the key. This is the kind of ?fact? (fundamental), upon which a theory is based. It?d probably be better to use the word assumption, but that sounds too weak; maybe ?founding assumption? would better describe it.

Hopefully,
~Samwik?

P.S. see my link on the quotes thread? ....the LUCKY 9%!
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#15668 - 10/23/06 09:47 PM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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The word "FACT" can be quite easily quantified.

When the value attributed to the fact is objectively the same for everyone, for example the temperature at which water melts, or the wavelength of radiation given off by a piece of iron at 2475.8 degrees Celsius ... then it is scientific fact.

When the answer requires having a specific belief system, culture, nationality, personal saviour, guru, or whatever ... it is at best a datum.
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#15669 - 10/23/06 10:31 PM Re: God & science
trilobyte Offline
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Registered: 08/12/06
Posts: 179
Quote:
Originally posted by TheFallibleFiend:
You've never heard of archaeopteryx?

Oh I have heard of archaeopteryx...but do you have any kind of proof that it actually is an in-between?

basically all you have is several fossils...and a very large assumption.

Where is your proof that requires no speculation?

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#15670 - 10/23/06 10:35 PM Re: God & science
trilobyte Offline
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Registered: 08/12/06
Posts: 179
Quote:
Originally posted by terrytnewzealand:
Trilobyte. Could you please inform us precisely where where you believe there is a missing link on the evolutionary line between apes and humans.
Did you ever see the evidence you guys present?

Sheeze, most of the fossils are FRAGMENTED skull caps, jaw bones and a few teeth.

The rest is bias, speculative assumption and plaster of paris passed off as FACT.

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#15671 - 10/23/06 10:41 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Oh trilobyte, I'm glad to see you back; I'm so hoping you'll read back and answer my question about the dictionary definitions of the word "FACT." I think it starts on page 2.
Please?
Thanks,
~samwik
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Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15672 - 10/23/06 11:13 PM Re: God & science
trilobyte Offline
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Registered: 08/12/06
Posts: 179
samwik...why don't you post the FACTS rather tha trying to derail the subject and talking about the meaning of facts?

It's amazing how you evos work when your lost.

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#15673 - 10/23/06 11:29 PM Re: God & science
RicS Offline
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Registered: 03/26/06
Posts: 310
Loc: Sydney, Australia
G'day Sam,

Off Topic Somewhat

I read through this thread and am a bit of a loss to see how it relates to your query about Global Warming.

My old science teacher said nothing could be proven to a certainty. Philosophy suggests that you can only prove one thing "That I think". Not that anyone else thinks, just that you can prove that you think.

But science makes some basic assumptions. A line and a point can meet only once or not at all. Parallel lines never meet.

But there are a number of theories that have fairly overwhelming evidence in support of them and it is funny that the word "theory" seems to get used to suggest that the theory may not be valid or a "fact" within the limits of human thought.

The earth revolves around the sun. Maybe it doesn't but the evidence is overwhelming that it does. Is that a fact or a theory. Probably more importantly, is it a theory that can be currently challenged based on the evidence or body of knowledge that currently exists.

I always love evolution arguments because the "theory" doesn't conform to the bible or other religious texts. You end up with the arguments such as "How long was the first day?", "Who were Cain and Abel's wives?". Fun but irrelevent. Take out the religious arguments and what is the counter argument to evolution?

I remember a fundamentalist preacher that said that the chance of man being evolved from single cell organisms was the same as blowing up a junk yard and creating a fully functual jumbo jet. He even had a very very large number that he used against this happening. Me, I don't believe that there is any chance at all of blowing up a junk yard and creating a jumbo jet. It is not an incredibly unlikely event. It is just not possible. But the fact that life may have been extremely long odds just means that we beat those odds. Nice thought, if you ask me. I also rather like the thought that Einstein suggested that in an infinite universe with infinite alternative universes then any finite probability must occur, an infinite number of times. The less likely the probability the longer the frequency between the occurrences but otherwise it is still infinite. Doesn't sit all that well with the big bang theory but you can't have everything.

Fossils are incredibly rare. That sounds strange considering that I live in an area where I can find marine fossils in my backyard. But the rarity is not related to the fact that fossils can be found all over the place, only that fossils only manage to be created in exceptional circumstances and that they last is fairly amazing in itself.

So that rarity means there are huge gaps in the records. Fossils or impressions that include such things as skin or feathers are rarer still. The gaps do not "prove" that evolution theory is defective, only the nature of how fossils are formed and just how rare they are.

There are several fossils of dinosaurs that are birds or birds that are dinosaurs, most from China. There are creatures that have feathers and glide and there are creatures that don't have feathers but fly. There are often gaps in fossil records in the tens of millions of years. So?

Evolution may be called a theory but it has a huge body of evidence that supports it. Arguments in the detail of what was around and when are not the same as arguments that throw any doubt on the theory itself.

More two cents worth, probably worth less than two cents, but hey this is purely an opinion forum where not science is going to be able to establish that God exists or doesn't exist. Faith, is the belief in something in the absence of absolute proof. That's what makes it faith.


Regards


Richard
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#15674 - 10/23/06 11:36 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Oh please, could you take the time to read back over this thread and look at the different definitions for the word, "fact." My comments point to a big difference in the way the word can be used.

I'd like to hear your thoughts on this; do you see the difference also?

With that understood, I could respond to your most recent post re: "...post the FACTS..."

Still hopeful,
~samwik

P.S. I'd also like to hear from everyone else about this difference! Am I the only one who see a difference?
~
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#15675 - 10/24/06 12:51 AM Re: God & science
TheFallibleFiend Offline
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"Where is your proof that requires no speculation?"

No proof is needed - and it was not a "speculation," but a PREDICTION. Anatomists had already guessed that birds and reptiles were related. Evolutionists predicted that, if the two were indeed related, that there would be a species that had characters common to both. Lo and behold, we discover Archy - as well as others.

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#15676 - 10/24/06 01:28 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Hi TFF, any chance you could edit that "fossil" link back on page 2 of God & sci. (put a hard return in near the middle) because I think that'll bring the whole page back down to a readable size.

Do you have any thoughts re: defining "fact," from that thread also?

Thanks,
~samwik
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#15677 - 10/24/06 02:38 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Amaranth, -regarding p.2 of this thread only:
Thanks for checking into this. I don't know much about computers, but the top of my window says ...-Microsoft Internet Explorer (and I've still got a cell phone that weighs about a pound too; y'know, old stuff).

Looks like I'm not the only one though, re:
posted October 23, 2006 02:15 AM Member # 924 (terryt)
?Soilguy. You know why the page got wider? Evolution.?

Thanks again; can you try my suggestion without messing things up? I'll let you know if it helps.
Ordinarily I wouldn't care, but I've been referring back to that page alot.

~~samwik
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#15678 - 10/24/06 02:43 AM Re: God & science
TheFallibleFiend Offline
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sam, it's telling me that the time for editing has passed.

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#15679 - 10/24/06 02:45 AM Re: God & science
TheFallibleFiend Offline
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trilo,
it's important that you understand what a fact is to a scientist before you assert what is and what is not a fact. I know that conflicts with your desire to express the strongest opinions before you understand a subject, but at least you're given the opportunity to understand and of being understood.

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#15680 - 10/24/06 02:55 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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TFF, Thanks for trying. ...and well stated re: above (8:45).

Richard, I just now saw your post. I'll get back to you on that one.

~~Samwik
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#15681 - 10/24/06 03:12 AM Re: God & science
terrytnewzealand Offline
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Original statement:

"So trilobytes, does God like science?"

The answer seems to be "Sometimes". When it can be reconciled with a fundamentalist interpretation of The Old Testament. (I'd prefer to stay away from comment on The New).

By trilobyte's reasoning there are no such thing as "facts". Even the idea the sun will rise tomorrow is not a fact. All is relative.

I am sure of one fact though. In spite of all the evidence many people seem uncomfortable with the idea that we humans are simply just another of the many life-forms on this planet. We are only "special" because we think we are.

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#15682 - 10/24/06 05:17 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Yes, I'm starting to think that the phrase "speculative assumptions" is fairly accurate. After all, it is just a speculative assumption that the sun will rise tomorrow, or that atoms exist, or that space-time is the structure of existence, or that selective pressures exist, or that there is some process that causes mutations or variations, or that we live in a world that has existed more than 4000 years.

Thanks much;
~Samwik
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#15683 - 10/24/06 08:43 AM Re: God & science
terrytnewzealand Offline
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Like Socrates we really "know" nothing.

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#15684 - 10/25/06 01:02 AM Re: God & science
jjw Offline
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Ric8:

i singled out your comment because you seemed to be so covinced of it. Note

"My old science teacher said nothing could be proven to a certainty. Philosophy suggests that you can only prove one thing "That I think". Not that anyone else thinks, just that you can prove that you think."

No doubt your teacher had no difficulty proving that "he thought" but I am curious about the means he employed to do so. To whom do you make the proof? If there is doubt that the others think how do you seek confirmation that you think? Not right on topic so I withdraw.
jjw

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#15685 - 10/25/06 05:18 PM Re: God & science
RicS Offline
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G'day jjw,

Actually my science teacher employed his thoughts to prove he thought. To himself. However, he had nor has any ability to prove it to anyone else. I think that was the point.

Men in Black ended with a super being picking up marbles that included our universe and placing them into a bag. Men in Black II had everyone living in a train station locker. What's to say either of these are not true?

My personal view is that there is much in life that I can take as factual. I may not be able to prove these to anyone else but, hey, I really don't care. I do believe that I exist and that Newtonian laws apply most of the time. Not sure about the speed of light being the ultimate limit of speed but other than that and a few problems with some of the maths have no problem with quantum mechanics.

But these are personal views. They keep me happy, and able to make sense of my world without much thought about it.

Still not really on topic but you did single me out for mention, I think (Ric8 is me right?).


Regards


Richard
_________________________
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#15686 - 10/25/06 05:49 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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jjw, re: "If there is doubt that the others think how do you seek confirmation that you think?"
I'd answer that one has to make some basic assumptions.

RicS and jjw, you are both definetly still on topic! I agree, and will add more later....

Thanks mucho nacho,
~~Samwik
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#15687 - 10/25/06 10:04 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Re: your posts from ?Evidence for God? et#1091 & de#693:

~my wife's gonna kill me for "wasting" more time on here, but....

et, Cool!
Very good point about the small amount of evidence vs. a large amount of repeatable, independent, etc. evidence.

My focus on the 5th definition (which I contend scientists must use in reference to the fundamental, basic assumptions in ANY theory) is to point out that kind of "fact" is no different than "unquestioned faith." It is "presumed as" true; a speculative assumption (that works incredibly well). However, just because it works so well, there should not be a "refusal to accept anything that goes against it." -de
I'm not saying we should accept anything that "goes against it," just that if you don't want to accept it, one shouldn't be judgmental. In the end, who's to say who's right? Fortunately, before the end, science is a lot more fun and practical.

As you say "We all know what we mean for fact." -et
But, THEY don't know what we mean (sometimes) by "fact" def.#5. Clearing that up early will prevent a lot of misunderstandings and heated debate.
I'm like a dog witha bone, eh?
Thanks again,

~~Samwik
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#15688 - 10/26/06 04:20 AM Re: God & science
terrytnewzealand Offline
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Samwik. Facts are what each of us believe to be true. What we believe to be true is often in effect what we want to believe. What we want to believe is largely determined by what we grow up believing. This is why Unamuno could say atheists in Spain were Catholic. I suggest that atheists in the USA are Christians. Many beliefs about evolution, for example, are filtered through an Old Testament perspective. We cannot escape our genes and our upbringing.

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#15689 - 10/26/06 05:00 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Hiya ttnz,
I'd wanted to comment of this before:
"In spite of all the evidence many people seem uncomfortable with the idea that we humans are simply just another of the many life-forms on this planet." -ttnz9:12PM
I appreciated your point here; I often notice the strange looks I get when I refer to "all the other animals...." smile

Re: the above, "facts...."
Yes, we only believe what we want to. I just think that to communicate with people, we have to recognize that there are facts that can be easily verified as true, and others that can only be "presumed as" true.

Thanks,
~Samwik
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#15690 - 10/26/06 07:27 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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~sorry, I just had to rewrite this below. ~SA
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#15691 - 10/26/06 06:45 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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re: above post 10/25, 4:04 PM (6:04?)

Differing Theories on same topic:

I have a perfect example of this difference in fundamental assumptions (see above) from within science; no religion involved!

I came in on the middle of a discussion entitled, ?The Expanding Universe.?
I thought I could explain something that would answer the question at hand. After a second attempt, the answer I got back from the thread?s originator made me wonder if we weren?t operating under different, fundamental assumptions about the nature of reality.
I asked a couple of questions to confirm my impression, and felt sure enough we had totally different ideas about ?reality.?

Knowing this, I could see my ideas would make no sense from the other point of view, and vice versa; so that was the end of it. I did suggest a few ideas that I thought might be interesting, hoping that some day in the future we might be closer in our presumed assumptions about "reality."
*
So my final response to this issue was,
?Thanks for the explanation. Yep, that makes it clear.?
*
Although I continued to participate in the thread and address others? posts, I did not try to re-explain my viewpoint, hoping that if I made it clearer, anyone might change and suddenly understand my angle. At most I added a few links and comments, directed at others, responding to posts on that thread; which I hoped might pique some interest in the nature of "reality."
***
I thought this was such a great example because we were all talking about cosmology. Though with such differing basic assumptions about the nature of reality and how to define these terms, we might as well have been speaking different languages.

How is this different from talking to a religious person? I don't see it as much different; any comments?

trilobyte? Hope to hear from you.
Thanks,
~samwik
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#15692 - 10/26/06 10:06 PM Re: God & science
RicS Offline
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G'day Sam,

I've been trying quite hard to get what you are suggesting in this thread but can't quite wrap my head around it.

Why should you need to get a new theory if two incompatable explanations of evidence exist, for instance? Could it be that one of the two works fine but there is just more evidence that has yet to be uncovered or because of circumstance that evidence is lost.

Dinosaurs went extinct because of a meteor. It fits a great deal of the evidence but not all of it. Trouble is that it is possible that it, and other explanations might be all partly correct, or the meteor one is completely correct but the evidence is gone. 65 million years has been enough to wipe out the primary evidence so all that is left is speculation.

I think I understand your point about scientists making assumptions. It's actually amazing that when peer review occurs to many scientific papers, the basic assumptions are rarely questioned. Sometimes that's because everyone thinks those assumptions are well settled. But at other times I really have to wonder. Is this something like what you are getting at?

I was given a paper two days ago by a scientist in Britain that did a considerable amount of research demonstrating that Urban Effect had no real influence on the world's average temperature records over the last century or so. The assumptions he started with where truly breathtaking in their lack of support but they were not challenged anywhere. One assumption was that urban effect had to be greater on the warmest days. Sounds logical but there was no imperical data to back this up. Another was that urban effect would effect temperatures by a negligible amount on windy days. This one was the basis of the whole paper, yet there was no attempt to support the assumption at all. An assumption that I would suggest really made the whole thing a wasted exercise was that prevailing winds due to major weather patterns could be relied upon to establish that a particular day in a particular city was windy (this was done because the data that was available generally does not include wind intensity at all and even if it does it does not generally record it at the time of minimum temperature). His examination of the records showed that weather patterns for China actually caused the cities to warm up when he had assumed they would cool down yet even this did not cause him to wonder whether the assumption was correct.

I started thinking of simple physics experiments and a block of warm concrete. What would this do to air circulation? If there was a fan set up to blow across the block, would the warmth of the block change the air flow? Would the movement of air cause the block's extra temperature to drop to the surrounding ambient temperature in a short time? Think of a city on a winter's day. From studies of Berlin's urban effect and what it does to night time temperatures, to winter's days and nights etc, the assumptions actually didn't hold up all that well, but this paper was submitted to a professor who found no fault with the assumptions. It obtained funding and no one questioned the assumptions. It was peer reviewed and no one questioned the assumptions. It is now used as a the primary paper by a very large institute for many other research projects as their reference why urban effect has minimal effect on temperature and therefore does not need to be considered. And during all of this not one person thought to question the basic assumptions that the author used to base the whole paper on.

Interestingly, I was having quite a pleasant email chat with the professor mentioned about problems with data. The conversation abruptly ended when I made the comment that I wondered about the assumptions made in the paper in question and whether there was any observations made by others on which the author could rely.

I know this is in the wrong topic but I'm using an example that I understand to see if this is what Sam's underlying supposition is. What is a "fact"? Is that a similar query to why do scientists seem to use assumptions for studies when there is little or no evidence to back up that assumption? And how far do we go? Do we have to take every scientific discussion back to the basic principals and ensure that each is valid before we can build on it, or is it safe to assume that these "facts" are, well, "facts"?

Sam, is this close to what you are putting across? Or am I really off the track?


Richard
_________________________
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#15693 - 10/26/06 10:34 PM Re: God & science
RicS Offline
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Posts: 310
Loc: Sydney, Australia
G'day all,

I gotta ask this. What's a transitional fossil?

If we start with a horse like creature with a longer than normal neck but in order to compete those in that species with longer than normal necks have a significant advantage and you end up with a giraffe, isn't every animal in that sequence just a representation of a species that existed at a particular point in time? My vague memory of evolutionary biology is of a tiny little creature that over about 40 million years ended up the modern horse. Where's the transition? Are not every single creature in that progression just an animal that either fitted its environment and was fairly successful or had to adapt and change. But all of those creatures survived and slowly changed otherwise we wouldn't have the hores. And back to the giraffe and those with short necks. What happens to them? Perhaps they ended up with their own specialisation or the long necked versions may have removed sufficient numbers to allow the short neck ones to continue on their merry way.

Or is the argument that evolution happens in spurts and the change from the longer horse like creature to a giraffe took not that many generations? In that case the chances of a fossil existing of any animal that was not either the earlier creature or the giraffe would be very small indeed.

To me I thought the theory of evolution includes that every creature on earth is evolving in some way. Some types of sharks may not have changed much in 100 million years or so but they still have made some changes and what is to say that many other types of species have not evolved from the basic species during that period, eventually being different enough so that they no longer could mate with the original species and continued off on their own, changing out of all recognition to the original shark, which because it wasn't a bad fit for its environment in the first place also managed to remain in existence during all that time.

This is not an area that I have much knowledge except the Science channels, the occasional article and what I learned at school so my musings may not be all that perfect but this idea of a "transitional fossil" seems a bit strange to me.


Richard
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#15694 - 10/26/06 10:48 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Just skimmed this, but wouldn't it have to be a "predicted" fossil. In other words, one that filled in a gap in the record. Once it is found, it'd no longer be transitional; but (as someone pointed out on the deleted "Impossible Split" thread, I think) now you are left with 2 smaller gaps in the fossil record. So now you have two more transitional fossils to look for. smile

Was that you DA? ...ttnz?
...Cheers?
~samwik

P.S. RICHARD, there is a more serious response to this question over on the "fossil" thread now. ~S
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#15695 - 10/26/06 11:02 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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But Richard, why are you talking about fossils on this thread. This is about epistemology. I try to avoid trilobyte's technical posts like "fossils" (but sometimes it's just too easy to jump in). I don't really care much about evolution either, except in that it is a very good model of how a theory works and allows me to delve into the epistemological aspects of theories in general.
Don't get me wrong, I like evolution theory as much as relativity theory (rises to the level of "~truth" in my mind), but I guess I don't see it as important to my daily life as things like climate change.
So, I'll go back and read your posts later; but for now, hope this clears it up a bit.

Thanks much,
~~Sam

P.S. this "~truth" term means GRATIS: Generally Recognized Assumed Truth, In Situ.
~S
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#15696 - 10/27/06 02:05 AM Re: God & science
terrytnewzealand Offline
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RicS wrote:

'but this idea of a "transitional fossil" seems a bit strange to me.'

In effect every species alive today is either a transitional species or the last species in its line.

Samwick, is that a fact, a belief or a speculative assumption?

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#15697 - 10/27/06 02:45 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by terrytnewzealand:
In effect every species alive today is either a transitional species or the last species in its line.

Samwick, is that a fact, a belief or a speculative assumption?
I think that is a very ingenious way of restating the theory of evolution. smile

~~samwik

P.S. I haven't thought about "belief" yet; maybe if trilobyte would come back, I could explore that also....
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#15698 - 10/27/06 03:23 AM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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It is FACT!
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#15699 - 10/27/06 03:38 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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DA,

*******
#5 : ?a piece of information presented as having objective reality?

"information presented as..."
is how science speaks of "facts" that form the foundation of a theory.

vs.

#3 : ?the quality of being actual?
#4 a : ?something that has actual existence?
#4 b : ?an actual occurrence?

which are the common usages;
*******

Do you mean "fact" as used in definition #5?

Thanks,
~samwik
_________________________
Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15700 - 10/27/06 04:38 AM Re: God & science
terrytnewzealand Offline
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In effect every species alive today is either a transitional species or the last species in its line.

DA. I'm prepared to play safe and call it a speculative assumption. We could add that there is absolutly no evidence contradicting it and a huge amount supporting it.

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#15701 - 10/27/06 04:54 AM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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samwik asks:
"Do you mean "fact" as used in definition #5?"

Yes!

Unless you can find something in the universe that does not evolve over time then everything that exists today, whether the galaxy, the solar system, the planet earth, or its inhabitants is either transitional to something different or the last moments before extinction. There is no other choice.

BTW: I put this change to the reality-challenged a few years back so perhaps it is time to put it here again.

Name one physical thing in the universe that is not evolving.

They failed then ... they'll fail now. Change is the rule and there are no exceptions.
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#15702 - 10/27/06 05:02 AM Re: God & science
terrytnewzealand Offline
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Hear, hear.

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#15703 - 10/27/06 05:51 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Thank you DA,
I appreciate you taking the time to deal with my nit-picking.

I like this a lot too:
"Name one physical thing in the universe that is not evolving." -DA

Not me, I can't!

It was thoughts along this line that helped me to understand space-time better.

Can something move without the existence of time? If nothing moved (evolved), would time exist? Can time exist without the space to move in?

Thanks for the memories,
~~Samwik smile


...but remember....

"Even though Maldacena's universe was very different from ours, the elegance of the theory suggested that our universe might be something of a grand illusion - an enormous cosmic hologram (New Scientist, 27 April 2002, p 22)."
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#15704 - 10/27/06 07:12 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by RicS:
G'day Sam,

I've been trying quite hard to get what you are suggesting in this thread but can't quite wrap my head around it.

Why should you need to get a new theory if two incompatable explanations of evidence exist, for instance? Could it be that one of the two works fine but there is just more evidence that has yet to be uncovered or because of circumstance that evidence is lost.

Dinosaurs went extinct because of a meteor. It fits a great deal of the evidence but not all of it. Trouble is that it is possible that it, and other explanations might be all partly correct, or the meteor one is completely correct but the evidence is gone. 65 million years has been enough to wipe out the primary evidence so all that is left is speculation.

I think I understand your point about scientists making assumptions. It's actually amazing that when peer review occurs to many scientific papers, the basic assumptions are rarely questioned. Sometimes that's because everyone thinks those assumptions are well settled. But at other times I really have to wonder. Is this something like what you are getting at?

I was given a paper two days ago by a scientist in Britain that did a considerable amount of research demonstrating that Urban Effect had no real influence on the world's average temperature records over the last century or so. The assumptions he started with where truly breathtaking in their lack of support but they were not challenged anywhere. One assumption was that urban effect had to be greater on the warmest days. Sounds logical but there was no imperical data to back this up. Another was that urban effect would effect temperatures by a negligible amount on windy days. This one was the basis of the whole paper, yet there was no attempt to support the assumption at all. An assumption that I would suggest really made the whole thing a wasted exercise was that prevailing winds due to major weather patterns could be relied upon to establish that a particular day in a particular city was windy (this was done because the data that was available generally does not include wind intensity at all and even if it does it does not generally record it at the time of minimum temperature). His examination of the records showed that weather patterns for China actually caused the cities to warm up when he had assumed they would cool down yet even this did not cause him to wonder whether the assumption was correct.

I started thinking of simple physics experiments and a block of warm concrete. What would this do to air circulation? If there was a fan set up to blow across the block, would the warmth of the block change the air flow? Would the movement of air cause the block's extra temperature to drop to the surrounding ambient temperature in a short time? Think of a city on a winter's day. From studies of Berlin's urban effect and what it does to night time temperatures, to winter's days and nights etc, the assumptions actually didn't hold up all that well, but this paper was submitted to a professor who found no fault with the assumptions. It obtained funding and no one questioned the assumptions. It was peer reviewed and no one questioned the assumptions. It is now used as a the primary paper by a very large institute for many other research projects as their reference why urban effect has minimal effect on temperature and therefore does not need to be considered. And during all of this not one person thought to question the basic assumptions that the author used to base the whole paper on.

Interestingly, I was having quite a pleasant email chat with the professor mentioned about problems with data. The conversation abruptly ended when I made the comment that I wondered about the assumptions made in the paper in question and whether there was any observations made by others on which the author could rely.

I know this is in the wrong topic but I'm using an example that I understand to see if this is what Sam's underlying supposition is. What is a "fact"? Is that a similar query to why do scientists seem to use assumptions for studies when there is little or no evidence to back up that assumption? And how far do we go? Do we have to take every scientific discussion back to the basic principals and ensure that each is valid before we can build on it, or is it safe to assume that these "facts" are, well, "facts"?

Sam, is this close to what you are putting across? Or am I really off the track?


Richard
I finally got to read this -mostly. but i'm having computer problems so will finish and try again later.

But yes, I think this is all right on what i'm gettng at. Except first part maybe; -but later

Thanks mucho all,
~~Sam
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Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15705 - 10/27/06 07:34 AM Re: God & science
Te Urukehu Offline
Member

Registered: 09/08/06
Posts: 51
Loc: Aotearoa
In terms of evolution surely it is a grand illusion. Superficially, the appearance of things change over time - but the underlying matter that constitute the fundamentals of the phenomenological world of our perceptions remain the same
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#15706 - 10/27/06 07:58 AM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Registered: 10/10/06
Posts: 1164
Loc: Colorado
So far, so good.

Yes, very often our facts are "presented as" reality, but....

And these are usually the very basic assumptions.

I'm not saying we have to re-check every assumption every time we make an observation or whatever.

There is a whole spectrum from hypothesis to "~truth" (gratis -see "theories" thread); that is, theories that are so well established as to be considered true or "a fact." As such, they form the basis for many other provisional theories (not yet gratis), weak or competing theories and hypotheses.

Regarding your above post, the beginning and up thru the dinosaur part is addressing the level of hypothesis or weak/competing theory. In that area not to many are demanding "facts" be acknowledged as absolute.

But when a theory such as evolution or relativity rises to that level of being gratis --Generally Recognized As True, in situ (in a given situation/reality) then the basic assumptions are also much more fundamental.

So what's my point? Um, let me get back to that later?

Briefly? In certain circumstances (in certain situations) it may be appropriate to acknowledge that those basic assumptions are not necessarily facts in the most ultimate sense (even though we are so used to thinking of them as ultimately true in most situations). For instance, in a discussion about religion or in a discussion about cosmology, questioning basic assumptions shouldn't be out of the question.

Maybe a better way to say it would be that if the basic assumptions or fundamental reality can't be agreed upon, then discussion is gonna be hard.

Just being aware of the ultimate limitations of knowledge can allow one to (while remaining confident in your belief that your basic assumptions are safe) try a 'thought experiment' where you provisionally adopt the other's basic assumptions. It can be very educatioinal and mentally empowering.

Okay, enough for now; computer calm -maybe too calm.

Thanks again,
Later,
~~Samwik


"Even though Maldacena's universe was very different from ours, the elegance of the theory suggested that our universe might be something of a grand illusion - an enormous cosmic hologram (New Scientist, 27 April 2002, p 22)."
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Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15707 - 10/27/06 08:11 PM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
TU wrote:
"In terms of evolution surely it is a grand illusion. Superficially, the appearance of things change over time - but the underlying matter that constitute the fundamentals of the phenomenological world of our perceptions remain the same"

Surely you jest. You don't have the same atoms in you right now you have 3 seconds ago. There is no illusion at work here. Evolution is the only reality.
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DA Morgan

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#15708 - 10/27/06 10:31 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
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Registered: 10/10/06
Posts: 1164
Loc: Colorado
Hi DA,
I don't think anyone is trying to say that evolution is wrong or invalid (just because our fundamental assumptions of reality MAY be based on an illusion). As a tool, the theory works just fine (for the reality that we perceive).

You said "Evolution is the only reality." -DA

Do you believe the same for Relativity Theory?

Thanks,
~samwik
_________________________
Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15709 - 10/27/06 10:35 PM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
Relativity and quantum mechanics are the rules under which evolution occurs.

What they describe is the evolution of systems. Some macroscopic ... some microscopic.
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DA Morgan

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#15710 - 10/27/06 11:30 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/10/06
Posts: 1164
Loc: Colorado
But relativity and quantum mechanics are mutually incompatible. They have conflicting basic assumptions and describe conflicting realities.

My point in referring to theories as "tools," is that they work for our purposes; and that should be the extent to which we rely on a theory's power.

As to their description of "true reality," maybe this is some sort of grand illusion. Maybe really we're just sitting on the back of an elephant being sucked into a black hole (re: your 10/26 post: "Can you Wrap your Mind..." http://www.newscientistspace.com/article/mg19225751.200-the-elephant-and-the-event-horizon.html ).
?or as I put it, ?a 4-D bubble on an anti-DeSitter membrane in 8-space, being sucked into a black hole.? **

Thanks,
~samwik

**from the post on ?not-quite-sci.?, ?Expanding Universe,? 10/16, 10:53 PM
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Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15711 - 10/28/06 08:17 PM Re: God & science
DA Morgan Offline
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Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
samwik wrote:
"But relativity and quantum mechanics are mutually incompatible."

True. But that doesn't stop each, in its own realm, from giving a very good description and prediction with respect to the evolution of a system.

We are the elephant. We are part of the universe. A part that is conscious of its own existence. And we are just desparately trying to comprehend our environment and our condition.
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DA Morgan

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#15712 - 10/28/06 10:25 PM Re: God & science
Te Urukehu Offline
Member

Registered: 09/08/06
Posts: 51
Loc: Aotearoa
While relativity and quantum physics may appear incompatible to us now - that does not necessarily infer that they are indeed incompatible.

I would think Science has many more discoveries to make before it can disseminate with confidence an essential theory of incompatibility.

I however believe that Science will more likely discover the angle of compatibility that underpins and therefore binds the two theoretical realms together - taking humanity one step closer to a truth.
_________________________
Darkness is but the sum total of Creation inclusive of the Light.

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#15713 - 10/31/06 12:19 AM Re: God & science
anyman Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 12/18/04
Posts: 134
sam,

just a quick note to say i'm not shinin' you on...i need to do some catch up over here on several threads

i spent all night messin' around here (while getting some other things done)

i'll make a serious effort to get to some of this in the next few days

later gator :-)

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#15714 - 11/10/06 06:43 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/10/06
Posts: 1164
Loc: Colorado
Sorry to be gone so long, but looks like anyman is still busy too; so....

...from previous page, this thread:

""My point in referring to theories as "tools," is that they work for our purposes; and that should be the extent to which we rely on a theory's power.

As to their description of "true reality," maybe this is some sort of grand illusion. Maybe really we're just sitting on the back of an elephant being sucked into a black hole (re: your 10/26 post: "Can you Wrap your Mind..." <http://www.newscientistspace.com/article/mg19225751.200-the-elephant-and-the-event-horizon.html> ).
?or as I put it, ?a 4-D bubble on an anti-DeSitter membrane in 8-space, being sucked into a black hole.? **
** ...from the post on ?not-quite-sci.?, ?Expanding Universe,? 10/16, 10:53 PM

Thanks,
~samwik""

...and....

Quoted from: Can you wrap your mind around this?
DA: That was an excellent conclusion (along with Te's) for the God&science thread, but I just had to clarify my take on this analogy used on that thread. It seemed too off-topic over there, but is much more on-topic here (if not too picky).


?According to Bob, the elephant went through and floated along happily for eons until it turned into spaghetti.? -from the NewScientist link above-

Just to clarify (although I?m sure we?re both partially wrong), I see it as if we are ?Bob? riding along with the elephant (the universe, or 4-D bubble) as it is sucked into the event horizon, floating happily along it?s trajectory (the anti-deSitter membrane) toward the singularity, stretching ?for eons until it [the universe/elephant] turned into spaghetti.?

Long live the Flying Spaghetti Monster!

Out in 8-space, Alice (God) is watching curiously, as we are, as you say, ?desperately trying to comprehend our environment and our condition.?

Long may we ride the FSM!

*_* END Quoted from: Can you wrap your mind around this?

...so....

To recall the meat of this thread, page 5 would be a good review. I've included some relavent comments above, from a simultaneous thread.
I had written this post below back on the 28th-29th but never did post it (computer problems, etc.).
It still seems like a good wrap-up.
Any Comments? ~still welcome
~S
_________________________
Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#15715 - 11/10/06 06:45 PM Re: God & science
samwik Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/10/06
Posts: 1164
Loc: Colorado
...so....

To recall the meat of this thread, page 5 would be a good review. I've included some relavent comments above, from a simultaneous thread.
I had written this post below back on the 28th-29th but never did post it (computer problems, etc.).
It still seems like a good wrap-up.
Any Comments????

The whole reason for starting this thread was to point out the futility of arguing for or against a theory, if the BASIC ASSUMPTIONS are not agreed upon.

?By trilobyte's reasoning there are no such thing as "facts". Even the idea the sun will rise tomorrow is not a fact. All is relative.? -ttnz
?But science makes some basic assumptions.? -RicS
Once we agree on the basic assumptions, then we can argue over what some particular evidence reveals or refutes. However, if the basic assumptions aren?t accepted, why even bother to challenge some aspect or claim of a theory?

A theory isn?t reality; and it may bear no relation to true reality at all (or it may be a very close approximation of ?true reality?), but that doesn?t matter. A theory is only a tool that allows for ? [well, we?ve said all this before].
I?ve never understood why a simple tool should threaten someone else?s worldview or philosophy of life. I think it?s because they think the theory is a competing worldview (a competing belief in what true reality is); and they don?t see a theory as just a simple, elegant tool that is pretty much independent of true reality (because of its dependence on basic assumptions).

?The TOE is a useful [tool] theory because its predictions are accurate. Creationism is a useless [tool] hypothesis, because it predicts NOTHING.? -soilguy11:48
?This is how creationism fails as a scientific hypothesis [tool]. It cannot be refuted. On the other hand, evolution [the tool] WOULD be refuted if the genomes of similar creatures were very different.? -soilguy7:08
I?m not voting for or against, but I think creationism could be called a theory, but [as with all theories] ONLY WITHIN THE CONTEXT of its basic assumptions (which makes it a very weak theory for scientific purposes).

Which brings me back to the reason for this thread.
?It's important that you understand what a fact is to a scientist before you assert what is and what is not a fact.? -TFF8:45
By zeroing in on trilobyte?s use of the word fact (or FACT as it was so often put), I was hoping to get to the underlying difference in our basic or founding assumptions (or as trilobyte so often put it, ?speculative assumptions.?

Sure, speculative assumptions generate speculative theories
We can grant that they are speculative; but they work soooo well! (for us, as tools, within their context). My point being, that regardless of one?s worldview, using a tool should not invalidate the worldview, even if the basic assumptions of the tool [theory] conflict with the basic assumptions of the worldview. For instance, I might believe the world was created by God 4000 years ago, but I can still use a tool [ some theory that assumes a geologic timescale] in order to examine and better understand my home planet; or I might have a Newtonian worldview, but still use Einstein to study the cosmos.

I understand that many people form a worldview that is entirely consistent with scientific theories, but that doesn?t mean it?s the only valid worldview. Worldview is so subjective (speculative?) and it doesn?t necessarily have to be very practical. Theories, on the other hand, do need to be objective and practical.

The intense confidence that scientists hold regarding their elegant, internally consistent, well vetted theories, is the same as the intense confidence that deeply religious people feel about their elegant, internally consistent, well vetted religions.
Arguing which is better is a purely subjective measure of utility and scope because things are still viewed from within their own context.

I may be overstating the absoluteness of polarity, but I don?t think I?m making a mountain out of a molehill either. Religion & science are relative opposites of great magnitude because the basic, founding assumptions are so fundamentally different.
But a religion usually is a worldview also. You don?t find people believing in more than one religious system. A theory shouldn?t be a worldview, though it might easily contribute to one. In science it is common to believe in competing theories. I believe in both Newton?s and Einstein?s theories as far as they are useful in different contexts, but I have to make allowances for their differing founding assumptions, their inaccuracies, and their lack of completeness in order to accommodate them in my worldview. The Earth is not flat, but for my everyday experience, the flat theory works well enough (I don?t have to calculate curvature when planning a trip across town). The Earth is not a perfect sphere, but in some contexts, the spherical theory works well enough to see patterns and relative relations of global things. I realize each theory works within its context and does not describe ?true reality,? but I can account for their shortcomings and accommodate them in my worldview. Interestingly, for both of the above examples, none of the four theories would be sufficient for a detailed examination of gravity.

So creationists shouldn?t argue scientific points or facts if they don?t buy into the basic assumptions, but they shouldn?t feel threatened either; because similarly, no one should challenge a religious point, if they don?t buy into the basic religious assumptions. Neither scientists, nor creationists should be self-righteous, but neither should they be discounted; both can be very useful within their particular context.


Now if you want to argue about basic assumptions, that?s fair game and another matter entirely, for which I have no definite opinion; except maybe, each to his own.

I?m not advocating anything here except tolerance, hopefully the result of a better understanding of our conceptual capabilities and our semantic limitations.


For a good way to close, the slightly altered tagline for Rascal Puff #1009
sounds appropriate:
?Modern day Finalized Reality is like a bus schedule - there'll be another one along shortly. Present day [theories] are often perceived and presented as [facts].?

?They keep me happy, and able to make sense of my world without much thought about it.? -RicS1:18
In the end, isn?t that all anyone is trying to do?

Thanks,
~~samwik
_________________________
Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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