Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafemuddy

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement

DMcG 04 Nov 18 - 09:16 AM
Stilly River Sage 04 Nov 18 - 10:14 AM
robomatic 04 Nov 18 - 03:29 PM
Senoufou 04 Nov 18 - 04:02 PM
Steve Shaw 04 Nov 18 - 04:17 PM
Iains 04 Nov 18 - 04:22 PM
Iains 04 Nov 18 - 04:49 PM
Steve Shaw 04 Nov 18 - 05:46 PM
Jack Campin 04 Nov 18 - 05:55 PM
robomatic 04 Nov 18 - 06:01 PM
DMcG 04 Nov 18 - 06:09 PM
robomatic 04 Nov 18 - 06:47 PM
Donuel 04 Nov 18 - 07:15 PM
Donuel 04 Nov 18 - 08:19 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Nov 18 - 08:23 PM
Donuel 04 Nov 18 - 08:43 PM
Donuel 04 Nov 18 - 08:45 PM
Joe Offer 04 Nov 18 - 10:14 PM
DMcG 05 Nov 18 - 02:17 AM
Senoufou 05 Nov 18 - 03:42 AM
DMcG 05 Nov 18 - 03:51 AM
Senoufou 05 Nov 18 - 04:09 AM
Iains 05 Nov 18 - 04:19 AM
Senoufou 05 Nov 18 - 04:37 AM
DMcG 05 Nov 18 - 04:39 AM
Big Al Whittle 05 Nov 18 - 04:41 AM
Iains 05 Nov 18 - 04:54 AM
Iains 05 Nov 18 - 05:22 AM
robomatic 05 Nov 18 - 06:48 AM
Iains 05 Nov 18 - 07:08 AM
Donuel 05 Nov 18 - 08:44 AM
Stilly River Sage 05 Nov 18 - 09:36 AM
Senoufou 05 Nov 18 - 09:38 AM
DMcG 05 Nov 18 - 10:55 AM
DMcG 05 Nov 18 - 11:08 AM
DMcG 05 Nov 18 - 11:50 AM
Donuel 05 Nov 18 - 05:29 PM
DMcG 05 Nov 18 - 05:37 PM
Steve Shaw 05 Nov 18 - 07:18 PM
Donuel 05 Nov 18 - 08:14 PM
robomatic 05 Nov 18 - 09:40 PM
Iains 06 Nov 18 - 04:50 AM
Donuel 06 Nov 18 - 06:27 AM
DMcG 06 Nov 18 - 07:19 AM
DMcG 06 Nov 18 - 07:37 AM
Senoufou 06 Nov 18 - 08:25 AM
DMcG 06 Nov 18 - 08:31 AM
robomatic 06 Nov 18 - 08:51 AM
Iains 06 Nov 18 - 01:40 PM
robomatic 06 Nov 18 - 07:54 PM
Iains 07 Nov 18 - 02:55 AM
Steve Shaw 07 Nov 18 - 04:19 AM
DMcG 07 Nov 18 - 06:52 AM
Donuel 07 Nov 18 - 09:19 AM
DMcG 07 Nov 18 - 09:59 AM
Stilly River Sage 07 Nov 18 - 10:45 AM
Iains 07 Nov 18 - 10:45 AM
Iains 07 Nov 18 - 11:48 AM
Stilly River Sage 07 Nov 18 - 11:59 AM
Iains 07 Nov 18 - 01:05 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Nov 18 - 04:12 PM
Steve Shaw 07 Nov 18 - 04:45 PM
Iains 07 Nov 18 - 04:45 PM
DMcG 07 Nov 18 - 05:46 PM
Donuel 07 Nov 18 - 05:54 PM
Iains 07 Nov 18 - 06:54 PM
Steve Shaw 07 Nov 18 - 06:56 PM
robomatic 07 Nov 18 - 08:45 PM
robomatic 07 Nov 18 - 09:07 PM
Donuel 07 Nov 18 - 09:29 PM
Donuel 07 Nov 18 - 09:52 PM
DMcG 08 Nov 18 - 02:34 AM
Joe Offer 08 Nov 18 - 02:56 AM
Iains 08 Nov 18 - 04:12 AM
Steve Shaw 08 Nov 18 - 04:15 AM
Donuel 08 Nov 18 - 05:44 AM
Donuel 08 Nov 18 - 06:37 AM
Donuel 08 Nov 18 - 06:47 AM
Iains 08 Nov 18 - 07:37 AM
Donuel 08 Nov 18 - 08:44 AM
DMcG 08 Nov 18 - 09:16 AM
robomatic 08 Nov 18 - 10:03 AM
Joe Offer 08 Nov 18 - 11:59 PM
DMcG 09 Nov 18 - 02:29 AM
Iains 09 Nov 18 - 03:49 AM
Senoufou 09 Nov 18 - 04:14 AM
DMcG 09 Nov 18 - 04:18 AM
DMcG 09 Nov 18 - 04:30 AM
Senoufou 09 Nov 18 - 04:37 AM
DMcG 09 Nov 18 - 04:58 AM
Steve Shaw 09 Nov 18 - 05:48 AM
Iains 09 Nov 18 - 05:53 AM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 08:13 AM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 08:20 AM
DMcG 09 Nov 18 - 08:29 AM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 08:39 AM
Senoufou 09 Nov 18 - 08:52 AM
DMcG 09 Nov 18 - 08:54 AM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 08:58 AM
Senoufou 09 Nov 18 - 09:45 AM
Stilly River Sage 09 Nov 18 - 12:28 PM
DMcG 09 Nov 18 - 01:37 PM
Steve Shaw 09 Nov 18 - 01:45 PM
Iains 09 Nov 18 - 02:31 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Nov 18 - 02:37 PM
Senoufou 09 Nov 18 - 02:41 PM
Iains 09 Nov 18 - 03:35 PM
Senoufou 09 Nov 18 - 04:14 PM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 05:57 PM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 06:09 PM
DMcG 09 Nov 18 - 06:28 PM
Joe Offer 09 Nov 18 - 07:10 PM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 07:11 PM
Joe Offer 09 Nov 18 - 07:14 PM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 07:32 PM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 07:38 PM
Joe Offer 09 Nov 18 - 07:47 PM
Donuel 09 Nov 18 - 08:06 PM
Joe Offer 09 Nov 18 - 08:53 PM
DMcG 10 Nov 18 - 03:13 AM
Senoufou 10 Nov 18 - 04:09 AM
Iains 10 Nov 18 - 04:54 AM
Steve Shaw 10 Nov 18 - 06:56 AM
DMcG 10 Nov 18 - 07:16 AM
Donuel 10 Nov 18 - 08:30 AM
Steve Shaw 10 Nov 18 - 08:34 AM
Donuel 10 Nov 18 - 09:13 AM
Iains 10 Nov 18 - 09:14 AM
Iains 10 Nov 18 - 09:21 AM
DMcG 10 Nov 18 - 10:50 AM
Stilly River Sage 10 Nov 18 - 11:27 AM
Steve Shaw 10 Nov 18 - 03:41 PM
DMcG 11 Nov 18 - 02:11 AM
Steve Shaw 11 Nov 18 - 05:52 AM
Donuel 11 Nov 18 - 02:04 PM
DMcG 11 Nov 18 - 04:14 PM
Donuel 11 Nov 18 - 04:43 PM

Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:









Subject: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 09:16 AM

I fear this thread may go toxic almost immediately, so if that happens would a mod close it or delete it as they think fit?


I went to a seminar yesterday entitled 'Science versus Religion?' on the relationship between them. It was a highly educated audience - I could guess 90% at least one degree, 50% with more - and a mixture of disciplines, though, based on conversation, primarily maths & physics on both sides. I would guess slightly more people had a religious background, but there were very many who had not.

Brian Cox was the keynote speaker.

What made the event especially enjoyable was how these people profoundly disagreed with each other, yet could still see some merits in other opinions and hence treated everyone with respect whatever their stance. I would summarise most people's approach as "I speak not to disprove what Brutus spoke,/But here I am to speak what I do know". Brian, for example, was one of several people referencing the Reverend Monsignor Georges Lemaitre, who also cropped up when discussing the 19c 'conflict theory' between science and religion, pointing out that things are far from as neat as that theory would suggest (Georges is by no means the only example of people active in both the religious and scientific domains.)

Other topics included what problems would arise for religion if we encountered intelligent extra terrestrial life (probably via radio signal thousand or millions of years old!), ethical considerations of AI, how our growing understanding of evolutionary psychology affects our understanding of the term 'free will' - which is a secular question as well as a religious one, medicine and extending life, and a number of others I could not attend because workshops ran concurrently.

The audience was self selecting, but it shows for a subgroup of people who are religiously inclined, religion is not so much about providing an answer to be accepted and left at that, but an on-going questioning of what that means in practice, and whether 'my' understanding is adequate to the demands placed upon it.

But overall, a very useful set of talks, and an exemplar of how to disagree by presenting your case rather attempting to attacking your opponent.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 10:14 AM

I worked on a master's degree in Environmental Ethics a couple of decades ago. It's part of the religious studies/philosophy department at that university. The current standoff between science and religion wasn't always the case. For a very long time they worked hand-in-hand, or at least live-and-let-live. Lemaître is a good example of that.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 03:29 PM

SRS, please characterize "the current standoff". Both science and religion are rather large spheres of endeavor.

My favorite definition of religion is "the awe in which we hold our ignorance." Science is a set of behaviors that attempt to consistently dispel ignorance. It does not mean there is no awe, but it intensifies awe to actually feel one has a grasp on understanding.

Also what do you mean by "for a 'very' long time they worked hand-in-hand."? Galileo, Charles Darwin and Thomas Huxley may beg to differ, Gregor Mendel notwithstanding.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 04:02 PM

I'm so jealous DMcG, as this interests me profoundly. I would have loved to attend that symposium.

I've really enjoyed Cox's series called Human Universe, which deals with how we came into being and our place in the Universe. He also covered the possibility of other forms of intelligent life somewhere in Space.

I think mutual respect and civility are essential to any discussion about Religion or Science, where they meet and where they disagree, and how each side copes with/adjusts to new discoveries of Time and Space.

I wonder if a key word might be Humility? After all, there must be much we don't yet know or quite understand, and arrogance, unshakeable certainty or a disparaging attitude will not get us further forward in our knowledge of the Universe.

Please ignore the following :-



I fancy Brian Cox like anything. He's second only to Sir David Attenborough in my admiration. (very old lady blushes)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 04:17 PM

I agree with robomatic here. Generally, I think that a standoff is largely illusory. Science to me is a day-to-day thing, a never-ending quest for getting closer to truth, though, deliciously, never getting there. Science gives us our machines, our computers, our fabrics, our communication, our computers and a whole load of trouble. Most importantly, a way of looking at everything. Religion gives people a thing that I personally ceased to understand quite a long time ago, but in general religious belief doesn't impede science. There are millions of cutting-edge scientists who are fervent believers, yet their beliefs don't impede their enquiry. My penny-in-the-slot explanation for that is that religious belief is perfectly capable of being compartmentalised. Not set aside, but put on the back burner so that science can proceed without impediment. I can give you an argument any day as to why religious belief is daft, irrational and frequently controlling and damaging. But it also gives a lot of people a lot of comfort. Don't ask me why, but I kind of think I know. In the past, less so in the present, ideology has tried to impede science. Hence Galileo, Darwin and Mendel. But Newton was not only one of the greatest scientists who ever lived, but he also believed in magic and was a religious zealot. These days, I'll just stand there, arms akimbo with a stern stare, confronting anyone who makes assertions that fly in the face of the self-evident, thinking (especially in my field) of evolution-deniers and young-earth creationists. I'd cheerfully kick the soapbox away from under them.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 04:22 PM

I wonder if a key word might be Humility?
Arrogance has sent science down many dark alleys and caused religion to kill untold millions. Humility accepts that we do not understand everything and that science has neither proved or disproved the existence of a God.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 04:49 PM

The Jesuit priest Teilhard de Chardin Geologist and Paleontologist
said:         "We are not human beings on a spiritual journey. We are spiritual beings on a human journey."

If we are spiritual beings on a human journey it rather turns the conventional paradigm on its head and adds many layers of complexity in determining both what religion is and what part science plays in it.

Makes my head hurt thinking about it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 05:46 PM

Now there was a man who was totally up his own botty.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Jack Campin
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 05:55 PM

The Scottish theologian Thomas Torrance made something of a career of asking awkward questions of his own profession out of what science had developed. One rather sticky one for Christians is how many Incarnations there would have to be in a cosmos that evolved intelligent creatures (presumably with souls that needed saving) in more than one location in space-time.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 06:01 PM

Iains took my very next post from my little fingers: "Humility". I'm a big fan of the Big H. For those both scientific, religious, (and mods).

I often think of the Oliver Cromwell quote: "I beseech thee by the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken." Though Cromwell the person is not necessarily my image of humility.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 06:09 PM

Indeed, that one was discussed. The session on extra terrestrial intelligent life was pretty much 45 minutes of difficult questions to think about. The goal of the session was to make us think, not provide answers (glib or otherwise.)

Even so, there were huge sections there was not time to go into. In most discussions (SF and otherwise) we recognise intelligence though the use of technology, but that is a very human-centric method. I think if we encountered alien intelligence we are very likely simply not to recognise it. It took us long enough to recognise behaviours in some animals and birds as showing intelligence, after all.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 06:47 PM

I think we have some excellent go-tos of what alien intelligence 'might' be like in that there is intelligence all over this planet if one looks for it with an open mind.

I have just finished and recommend "The Soul of an Octopus" by Sy Montgomery.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 07:15 PM

Who has got an hour to spend nowadays? But if you do lets lok back 13,000 years or 50,000 years before Christ.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-T1ZYL1VYY


(nothing to do with Aliens)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 08:19 PM

The founding fathers of my nation had an open mind to the many worlds theory. Knowing about 42,300 and equinoxes is not all our ancestors left in stone. If we want to speak to our ascendants 13,000 years from now, let us leave it in stainless steel or titanium.


Impact risk is higher than we thought. My intent is not meant to scare but we have had close shaves 5 years in row now. A kilometer or two of rock at 32,000 mph woud ruin our ra and make th people left to start over like children.

On opposite sides of the globe we have similar carvings. Even the details of what they hold in their left hand is the same. Advanced civilizations drowned from an impact 12,500 years ago. We see it at Globi Zep Tepi and structures thousands of years older.

So are we to expect Aliens to contact us in the future?
What I have seen, researched with Hynek, heard and felt are remarkable but not incontravertible truth.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 08:23 PM

Don't be naive, robo - the current science denial movement needs no introduction from me.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 08:43 PM

Then there are deniers within the science community like gradualists against catastrophe, still.

Carl Sagan in his book Contact addressed terrorism by religionists against ET intelligence but
I think it was overstated.









I think the two subjects Could be integrated to the satisfaction of both communities










I think







i


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 08:45 PM

just hope if they land they won't say
'take me to your leader'.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Joe Offer
Date: 04 Nov 18 - 10:14 PM

I like to think that when Space Aliens come, they will avoid cliches like "take me to your leader," and references to Roswell and Area 51. I'm hoping they will be more enlightened and sophisticated than we are....


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 02:17 AM

One thing I have been mulling over since the seminar is the question of morality. I need to start with an apparent diversion, but I hope it makes sense by the end.

Biologically, there are basically two main strategies to leaving descendants. The first, (e.g. mammalian and avian) is to have a very small number of offspring and spend a lot of effort nurturing them and the second (many fish and insects, all vegetation as far as I know) is to have a very large number of offspring and little or no nurturing.

I see big obstacles to the second approach developing any kind of technology because I don't see how information can be passed between generations easily in that approach, but I accept that could just be lack of imagination on my part, so let assume an intelligence capable of technology can develop under that reproductive style. I say this not because technology is essential to intelligent life, but because the only approaches we have been able to think of for detecting alien life so far - again as far as I am aware - rely on them having technology. Either that they visit us, which needs them to have technology we don't have, or they developed a means to send information via the electromagnetic spectrum far enough in the past for it to reach us when our technology is capable of detecting it.

Which brings us to moral systems. At the heart of ours is a protection of life: directly with prohibitions of murder, or indirectly with prohibitions of theft for example. But a creature with a different approach to descendants could, I suggest, put a completely different valuation on life and so have a well developed system of morality utterly different to our own.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 03:42 AM

Cox touched on this in his programme. He pointed out that a life form needs a long time (millions of years) to evolve and develop enough intelligence to advance in knowledge and produce sophisticated technology.

He showed many planets that may have supported life but only comparatively briefly, and any development would have been cut short by earthquakes, volcanoes, radiation, catastrophic asteroids etc. Whereas Earth seems to have been fortunate to have remained relatively stable so that humans could evolve and achieve some level of 'civilisation'.

If one considers other worlds with vastly different life forms which cultivate 'other' moralities, it leads one on to the question, 'If God exists, how does He view this rich variety of moral compasses, and where are we on the scale of Godly/religious/moral systems?'

This is where one wonders (as mentioned above) if an Incarnation (as subscribed to by Christians) in many forms has occurred elsewhere in the Universe. And it reduces us a bit as not quite so exclusive and important as we once thought.

The only conclusion we can reach is that 'we just don't know'.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 03:51 AM

One problem with Steve's suggestion that people who are scientists and religious put religion on the back burner so it does not impede the science is that many report otherwise. We all know the limitations of self reporting, but some of the panel worked at CERN and said their religious understanding actively helped them, rather than "not impeding" them. And that makes sense to me: we are immensely complex beings and who knows where inspiration comes from? I can self report an occasion where I was stuck on a particular mathematical cul-de-sac and was inspired to the way out via the song "The Keach in the Creel". Anything and everything can be grist to the inspirational mill.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 04:09 AM

Personally, I feel that if God exists and is the Creator of everything, then He would have no problem with our need to learn and understand all aspects of Science.
In fact, our advancing knowledge might do much to save Earth from disaster (eg pollution, disease eradication, environmental issues, over-population).
Science to me is Truth and Wisdom. That's not incompatible with God at all.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 04:19 AM

Did the universe organise itself, or was it directed?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 04:37 AM

I think that's the essence of the whole debate Iains. But whichever is correct, we can still learn about and explore it. Knowledge is vital.

The pitfalls occur when religious folk resent provable scientific theories/discoveries which contradict the Bible or other holy writings, and take stringent steps to suppress them.

Or when scientists get angry and mock or persecute religious views as misguided/incorrect/primitive.

Despite believing in God myself, I tend to support the Scientific side on this one. But never with insults, spite or a lack of respect for 'the other side'.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 04:39 AM

People will always disagree on that one, Iains. And this still disagree when you get into deep questions about precisely what constitutes being directed.

For my part, I would rather focus on how each discipline can benefit from and bring benefit to the other.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 04:41 AM

The next spiritual being that walks in here saying he's on a human journey - is getting a knee in the cobblers.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 04:54 AM

If he/she is traveling, they may be a tad hard to catch. If not traveling are they visible?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 05:22 AM

If you study the history of science, both scientific and religeous dogma have frustrated original ideas and held back the march of progress. The Chinese, Greeks and Romans had no problem with a belief in meteorites,
The French Academy of Sciences had the generally accepted opinion "Stones do not fall from Heaven" therefore this "could not happen." In 1803 they finally woke up. Heliocentrim replace geocentrism as a theory in 1543. The Church again was behind the curve. Wegener was laughed at,
plate tectonics is now accepted. Only since the shoemaker -levy impacts
has the realisation dawned that catastrophism can, and has, happened.
The sudbury nickel deposit is courtesy of an impact, as are other mineral deposits around the world..
   Without the impediment of dogma how much further would the world have evolved. Alternative energy sources, harmony among religions, more understanding of who and what we are.... the list goeson.
Is the PC world we now inhabit subject to the new dogma.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 06:48 AM

Every so often I watch the 1951 version of "The Day The Earth Stood Still". I think it has held up extremely well for a Sci-Fi flick with a message. A story as simple and profound as the Garden of Eve story or the Christmas story, aimed at a new age and era. And a message not yet completely absorbed.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 07:08 AM

robomatic I have been reading an account of how the US scientific community attacked Velikovsky when Worlds in Collision was published. They took no prisoners.
New York Daily News editorialized against them.

"If we might presume to offer the scientific brotherhood a tip, it would be to get busy trying to disprove Velikovsky with facts and figures and lay off trying to promote boycotts aimed at his book."

Organized science, however, was so unable to heed this advice that, more than a year later, mathematician J. S. Miller explained in Harper's why he had switched to Velikovsky's side.

"The glaring paucity and the barren weakness of explicit criticism . . . have impressed me. There have been vitriolic and abusive utterances filled with fever but amazingly bare of fact."

Very reminiscent of the BS of Mudcat in fact.
Makes me wonder how much Climate change is impacted by the same pack mentality.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 08:44 AM

DMcG Reproduction has many alternatives to what is found on Earth. I can think of more possibilities for Red dwarf solar systems with no impact threats and longer lasting stable conditions. Beings there would have no need for predatory malevolence so morality would be different.

The concept of ubiquitous life in the universe is already 'baked into' most religions I can think of. Jesus; My father has many mansions, Hindu; Bhgadivita, Ancient Egyptian ; Horus and Ossirus , ugh Mormons...

It will take about one generation for man to 'get used to it'

Example you did not have a flying saucer in your garage but if they are invented your children would see it as totally normal.

Teasing the public about ET life is destructive divisive and cruel but abject obvious truth would be an entirely different matter.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 09:36 AM

people who are scientists and religious put religion on the back burner so it does not impede the science is that many report otherwise. I think what you have here are zealots reporting (wishful thinking) that scientists have doubts about science.

Religion isn't just a way of believing. For others it is a way of living, of moving through the day in a society with friends and family. We do xmas every year even though no one in the family believes in a god, christian or anything else. We enjoy the company of friends and family and the participation in gift giving, a good meal, and comraderie. And since most of the stores and businesses are closed anyway, that's a good day to do it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 09:38 AM

My husband and I were discussing this thread this morning, and we both agreed that we feel very awestruck when we contemplate the Universe as portrayed in Cox's excellent TV programmes, and also after experiencing the Dynamic Earth centre in Edinburgh, and the superb film called 'We Are Astronomers' which they project on to the dome. The latter had us absolutely stunned.

We have different religions, yet we both have trouble imagining other life forms on other solar systems, although obviously we accept this is possible and even probable.

Muslims have quite a history of scientific thought and philosophy over the centuries.
Both of us are extremely interested in scientific discoveries and manage to 'run' Religion' and 'Science' in our heads without coming up against any conflict.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 10:55 AM

As do I, though perhaps not entirely without conflict. But when I find a conflict I generally suspect I have misunderstood one side, or the other, or both. And, up to now, that has been so.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 11:08 AM

We have concentrated on extra terrestrial light a bit, so by way of light relief I will just note a throw away remark of Brian Cox's. He showed a little video of the Worlds largest vacuum chamber and they had repeated the experiment of dropping a cannon ball and a feather to show they fell at the same rate without air resistance. Which of course the did. Brian then said all scientists watching broke out into applause "which is odd: you do not applaud laws of physics!".

There was something interesting there psychologically. Pity there was not the time to explore it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 11:50 AM

Third post in a row, but I think this was the best joke of the event.   It was from a member of the audience.

It is a bit depressing that the need for star to be as it is, for a planet to be in the Goldilocks zone, the long and tentative first steps to life, the millions upon millions of combinations of pairs of multicellular organisms, of evolutionary changes of almost unimaginable time, and the almost chance meetings of one human male with a female was the exact and unique sequence needed to lead up to Boris Johnson.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 05:29 PM

That joke was a smile but no laugh. So you are surprised by exemplary disagreement?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 05:37 PM

I am afraid I do find people disagreeing with each other without resorting to personal attacks is getting to be a surprise.

The joke is a good example of a variety of bathos, I think.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 07:18 PM

There is unavoidable conflict between science at the philosophical level, though not generally at the everyday level. That's what I was trying to say. Working scientists can cheerily get on without bringing their religious beliefs into the fray. They can develop the drugs, the vaccines, the hardware and software, they can do the engineering in all the fields, yet go to Mass of a Sunday and see no conflict. But at the philosophical level the conflict is unalloyed. Science is all about unending enquiry, informed always by evidence and scepticism, and never accepting proof. Religious belief leads to the teaching of certainties, in extreme cases requiring you to accept them without demur, and this staunches the natural curiosity that leads to that never-ending enquiry. You may delude yourself into thinking that theological enquiry is just as valid, but if that's what you think you're living in a bubble that doesn't admit real evidence. You look to the stars in the heavens and say, what more do you need. Well to me that will never do. Explanations for the origin of everything that require the intelligent mind to eschew evidence and take on board explanations that themselves can't be explained, not ever, because of their concerted dismissal of the laws of physics, are irrational. Not that irrationality doesn't have its place. We're not Mr Spocks and some of us even support Liverpool FC. That's life the human way. No black, no white!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 08:14 PM

Starting with your first sentence I find the opposite is true due to status quo pressures and peer acceptance. Second: Science is a Philosophy.
Science is not based on 'never accepting proof'. Or maybe you meant the opposite again. The rest is obvious and ends with a cute sci fi homage.
If I were to grade your essay I would give it a C and your construction an A-.

You have editorialized about my writing so I now respond.

I write in idea packets (that can be expanded upon) but you are not saying what you think you are saying in my view. On the surface perimeter you do say it well, but its fluffy. Or are you having a go?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 05 Nov 18 - 09:40 PM

Iaians:

Funny you should bring up Velikovsky. My father was an honest-to-God real scientist and he was on the side of the scientific community on that one. Because "Worlds in Collision" was not science. It was no different than 'revealed truth' i.e. a new chapter of the bible or an astrological tract. It was attacked because it was being represented as a valid scientific theory which it was not. It was the equivalent of representing Creationism as Creation 'Science' which it is not, or putting it on a debating par with Darwinian evolution.

To quote Richard Feynman (who was in high school with my mother) "I know how hard it is to know something." [Cripes I'm beginning to sound like Donuel!]

Now, on the off chance that you confused Velikovsky's book with my reference to "The Day The Earth Stood Still", they are entirely different. "The Day The Earth Stood Still" is a science fiction movie based on an earlier short story called "Return of the Master." In the movie an alien of very human appearance lands a space ship in Washington D.C. and demands to talk to all of Earth's leaders. He is greeted with fear and hostility but he has a robot companion, "Gort" by name, who has the potential to be a Galactic enforcer. How the human appearing "Klaatu" can convince humans of his identity and importance, and what happens is a piece of good story-telling, yet a very simple tale as well.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 04:50 AM

Robomatic you could be responded to on many levels, but I will try to be very brief.
1)Conventional geology adheres to the priciple of Uniformitarianism whereas Velikovsky advocated catastrophism. The extinction of the dinosaurs was a catastrophe, as was the formation of the Witswaterand by the Vredefort impact crater. There are roughly 170 major impact structures recognised and in the deep ocean no one knows.
The science is overwhelming that catastrophes do occur. The presence of craters, nano diamonds and the shocked quartz varieties of coesite and stishovite supports the view impacts were responsible.
So on that score Velikovsky was ahead of his time. He was ridiculed for both the events and the causative agent. It seems meteorites were responsible, not planets(I hesitate to be too emphatic about that because smug certainty can be later disproved)

2)Hamlets Mill, An Essay Investigating the Origins of Human Knowledge and Its Transmission Through Myth by Giorgio de Santillana and Hertha von Dechend ,is a nonfiction work of history and comparative mythology, particularly the subfield of archaeoastronomy
It is also a very thought provoking book. A partial summary would say that it makes the case that Ancient man had a fixation on the Heavens, and especially the Zodiac. Certain numbers concerning periodicity crop up in many myths worldwide and are repeated in architecture of ancient sites.. Why would so much time be wasted tracking precession. Why so many stories about world ages. Did they know something about periodicity that we do not? After all the oort cloud can slingshot nasty surprises into potential earth crossing orbits.
3)Alexander Thom an Oxford engineering professor was ridiculed for insisting sites such as Stonehenge were laid out with high precision, by use of a megalithic yard. The precision is accepted(now) but the megalithic yard is still disputed.
4)Conventional archeology seems very straitjacketed and unable to accept new Ideas. For me it was beautifully summed up by the BBC program Timeteam. Each time an object was found that they could not explain it was automatically labelled a ritual object.
5)People such as Velikovsky, Von Daniken and Graham Hancock are vital.
They challenge the existing paradigm and make all manner of embarrassing challenges. That is healthy. Unfortunately peer pressure makes cowards and funding can make science political.
Science from the left field, not surprisingly, is very sinister and academics automatically reject it, often without even studying the supporting evidence.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 06:27 AM

Well heck robo my mom only went to high school with Dick Van Dyke :^/

Even a blind Vielikovsky can find a truffle now and then.
Our early solar system was chaotic but I doubt within the span of modern humans and folklore.
The other debate back then was about an open or closed universe.

Your posts are hitting home runs. :^O


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 07:19 AM

Religious belief leads to the teaching of certainties, in extreme cases requiring you to accept them without demur, and this staunches the natural curiosity that leads to that never-ending enquiry. You may delude yourself into thinking that theological enquiry is just as valid, but if that's what you think you're living in a bubble that doesn't admit real evidence. You look to the stars in the heavens and say, what more do you need. Well to me that will never do

Remember at this symposium we are talking about research scientists at CERN who happen also to be religious. I don't think I am going out on too much of a limb to suggest they have that view of science as well and unlikely to look at the stars and say what more do you need.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 07:37 AM

For those interested The Wikipedia article on the thesis that religion and science are in conflict is worth reading, since it covers the historical origins and subsequent developments.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 08:25 AM

I've had a brief look at that Wikipedia article DMcG, and assume that by 'religion' they are restricting their study to the Christian religion, and its various conflicts against heresy.

I feel one must also consider Islam, since it has a rather different attitude to scientific research and learning.

For example, the ancient University of Cairo, Al-Azhar was founded in 975AD, and therein Philosophy was studied, and later Astronomy, even Chemistry, Zoology and of course Mathematics. Many Muslims developed a love of Mathematics and Science and were encouraged to do so, not threatened with accusations of apostasy or heresy.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 08:31 AM

Oh, I entirely agree, Sen. I think it focuses on Christianity purely because that was Draper and co's main environment. A proper study should not be be restricted European-Christian matters.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 08:51 AM

Iains: I apologize for mis spelling your name before:

I fully endorse the argument that scientists can be every bit as dogmatic and resistant to new and good ideas as any other band of purported truth seekers. And science and scientists are continually perverted by those in power. (I'm currently reading an interesting book called "The man who stalked Einstein") There is nothing wrong with researching anthropological evidence, myths, historical records and coordinating them with known astronomical events. That don't make Velikovsky and his ilk science. Check out the Wikipedia entry on his book.

Many years ago my brother was going over his math homework with our father who was objecting to his reasoning. "But," my bro said, "I got the right answer!" Dad wrote down:
2=3
3=2
_____
5=5

and said: "There! I got the right answer!" Dad had continual problems getting his work published due to just this kind of resistance to differing ideas.

But new ideas are like the radiation that alters our genetic material. Most of them are not getting us there. For every Galileo or Newton there are many more Alex Jones. Used to be to disseminate new ideas you needed a publisher (or a mimeo machine, 'member those?). Now all you need is 'access' to the web.

Real scientists were aghast that Velikovsky got to a reputable publisher. More recently a doctor got to a reputable British journal and linked vaccinations to autism. He has since been debunked but the perverted science has got to every level of authorityh in the land, White House included.


I don't expect to convert you. And I don't think you are unintelligent. I think at this point we might agree though that this stuff matters.


I return to humility. My father pretty much idolized Sir Isaac Newton, as do I. But if you know much about Sir Isaac, you know that while being one of the great all time geniuses, he also spent a great deal of time and effort on occult studies

There used to be a room at The Babson Institute near Boston devoted to Newton and his works. I'm not sure the material is still actually there but there is a collection of 'Newtonia'
associated with Sir Isaac that I think included some of the lesser known aspects of this man. And they claim to have a scion of the Newton Apple Tree growing there.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 01:40 PM

Donuel Our early solar system was chaotic but I doubt within the span of modern humans and folklore.
There is a body of thought that would beg to differ.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impact_event (I do not like using Wiki but it gives a very rapid overview. check the holocene events.


https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b&ei=_szhW6OZK6qCgAanhLLgDA&q=holocene+meteorite+impacts+scientific+papers&oq=holoc

Robomatic Velikovsky may have been a maverick, but not everything he postulated was entirely away with the fairies.I can appreciate your point of view but would suspect you might be guilty of throwing out the baby with the bathwater. This could be unfortunate because when their speciality is challenged many "scientists" have closed minds and tunnel vision. They also do not like their preconceived view of the world shaken and are far too resistant to change. In short they possess an arrogance and air of superiority arising from foundations of sand, because many know more and more about less and less. Increasingly teams of varied specialists are required to make any headway.
For example:A brief review of the literature on climate change shows a vast number of different specialities contributing. As you rightly show, Newton practised alchemy-does that mean we should disregard his contributions and have burned him as a witch/wizard? I am sure Einstein and Tesla probably had feet of clay, but no rationalperson would attempt to belittle their accomplishments(Einstein and Velikovsky actually met and communicated with each other)
I am still very curious why ancient man had a preoccupation with precession and calculating ages. The detail carried down the generations was far more than that needed to calculate the correct date to plant the cabbages.
"500 doors and 40 there are I ween, in Valhalla's walls; 800 fighters through each door fare, when to the war with the Wolf they go. "( 540 X 800 = 432,000)

In Babylonia, the ancient scribe Berossus wrote that mythical kings ruled before the Great Flood for a total 432,000 years.

In India, the Rigvida contains exactly 432,000 syllables. And although the calculation has created some confusion of late, the Vedic Kali Yuga (representing the current world age) is said to be comprised of 432,000 years.

On the other side of the globe, Mayan calendar units reprise the same precessional figures. For example: 1 tun (an astronomical year) = 360 days; 6 tuns = 2,160 days; 1 katun = 7200 days, 6 katuns = 43,200. The standard Mayan base of 20 (ours is 10) is arrived at by dividing 43,200 by 2,160.

72 years = the time it takes for the stars to shift 1 degree

30 degrees = one astrological age (a different zodiac constellation rises with the Sun every 2,160 years)

12 = the total number of zodiac signs or astrological ages. 12 times 2,160 = 25,920 years, or one full precession cycle

360 degrees = 12 X 30 degrees, or one full circuit through the zodiac constellations

Is the above merely simple mythology or are we missing something significant about these spans of time?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 06 Nov 18 - 07:54 PM

24 beers in a case;
24 hours in a day. . .
coincidence?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 02:55 AM

I think you push "coincidence" a little far. But it gives the satisfaction of avoiding explanation for causality.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 04:19 AM

"I don't think I am going out on too much of a limb to suggest they have that view of science as well and unlikely to look at the stars and say what more do you need."

That's exactly my point. Working scientists putting their beliefs on the back burner. But I know plenty of people, not necessarily working scientists but certainly people who are comfortable with science, who do just that. We're allowed some irrationality in our lives.

Donuel, don't patronise me please. You are a chap who makes little attempt to help us to process your obscurantism. That seems to be a deliberate effort to make you sound cleverer then you are. For that I'll give you E minus. Let your speech be yea yea, nay nay.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 06:52 AM

I think we simply have a different view, Steve. For me, that would not involve putting religion on the back burner at all. But I don't think there is much to be gained by exploring that further.


As far as the numerology things Iains raised, I think there is something of interest, but probably entirely different to the things Iains is talking about. There is something in human nature or experience that makes some numbers more significant than others: 2, 3, 7 and 12, for example. Given that, multiples and combinations are to be expected. But why those have such significance is something worth exploring (not that I do so here)


Take the zodiac for example. What we have in the night sky is, along the milky way, a pretty random collection of stars of varying brightness. It is an entirely human projection to pick out twelve constellations: it could have been 10, or 13 as easily. There is not a 12-ness inherently in the skies as far as I can tell. And this is reinforced by the differences in the Chinese and Western constellations. So the signs of the zodiac to me are not intereating in themselves but do say something about human nature at that 3,7,12 level.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 09:19 AM

Sometimes I have to poke the Steve bear. :^l

43,200 is half a precession wobble of the Earth. So we were able to measure such things in antiquity. This seems to be a global cultural phenomena to make these unintuitive measurements. However the Eastern religions (Hindu, Buddhism, Chinese, Taoism) seem much richer to me in describing other worldly intelligence in detail.

I have questions about the ancient Droppa and other 'coincidenies' we have seen in modern times for ourselves (NASA).

Polling shows that there is majority of people who share a belief in other worlds and intelliegence. If extraordinary evidence is ever made transparent I believe the worry about religious contradictions and push back is an imaginary Red Herring. So of course we would see exemplary agreement and disagreement, should we be so enlightened.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 09:59 AM

I thought the earth's precession fluctuated around 26,000 years. What units is the 43,200 in? (As my old physics teacher used to say "no units, no marks')


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 10:45 AM

I am still very curious why ancient man had a preoccupation with precession and calculating ages.

I am curious why some modern humans continue to subscribe to numerology nonsense as if it means anything. robomatic had it right. This is the same kind of nonsense that made the rounds re: Lincoln and Kennedy assassinations (Lincoln was shot in a theater, his shooter was captured in a warehouse; Kennedy was shot from a warehouse and his shooter hid in a theater . . . ) Coincidence is something humans notice because we function by recognizing patterns. But not all patterns mean anything. To use the number 432,000 and choose events where it is applied is pretty much random since there are many more occurrences of 432,000 that you chose to ignore because they DON'T fit the pattern.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 10:45 AM

Precession is only one of numerous cycles.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milankovitch_cycles


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 11:48 AM

I detect a little confusion between numerology (fantasy land) and precession(Science)

There is nothing remarkable about a measuring system using a base of 12,
360 degrees in a circle, 12 pennies in a shiiling, etc. That the numbers have a meaning is obvious, they are constituents of the precessionary cycle. Though I will admit the 432000 has no obvious derivation.

400000 and 413000 have a explanation in the previous link.
There is a periodicity to extinction events that many accept but this is on a Ma timescale.
It is estimated that a 1 km or greater body collides with Earth about once every 0.5 million years. We have only catalogued a small fraction of the potentially hazardous bodies.(I cannot find any convincing literature for this)
As plotting NEOs is a relatively new underfunded science and our knowledge is still incomplete. I keep a very open mind on the subject.


https://www.space.com/41260-near-earth-asteroid-detection-video-nasa.html


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 11:59 AM

Your pseudo-science includes a snippet of science. Even a stopped clock is correct twice a day.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 01:05 PM

Care to point out the spseudo science in anything I have stated.
Precession is a fact
The numbers of precession incorporated in world wide myth is a fact
Impacts are a fact
That ancient civilisations were obsessed by planetary motion is a fact.
That these numbers were repeated in architecture such as Angkor Wat is a fact.
As I said before this level of detail is not needed to establish crop cycles and the 12 houses of the Zodiac merely make a convenient peg to remember significant numbers. Simply an aide-memoir,e no more, no less
Surely the question should be: Why did they think these larger numbers so important? I think we are a little complacent considering our dearth of knowledge of our past, and our certainty that myth does not hide another reality .

I think I am well qualified to distinguish between fairy tales, theories and established fact, and between peer reviewed articles in the scientific journals and the gutter press.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 04:12 PM

Velikovsky was a Russian independent scholar who wrote a number of pseudoscientific books reinterpreting the events of ancient history, in particular the US bestseller Worlds in Collision published in 1950. Earlier, he had played a role in the founding of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel, and was a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst. --from Wikipedia


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 04:45 PM

Any two events that occur together make a coincidence. I had this chat here years ago with MGM Lion. Coincidences are all in the mind. I'll give you an example. I've just eaten the last piece of Camembert, neat. Just after swallowing it, my left foot itched. That has never happened before and will almost certainly never happen again (not least because I nearly always smear my Camembert on a Bath Oliver). Well what a coincidence it was then! But my characterisation of that as a coincidence is highly subjective, and anyone reading about it will either think I'm barking mad or be bored out of their minds. Earlier on today I was reading the paper with the radio on. I was reading the word "democrat" when the newsreader said the word "democrat" at precisely the same moment (we've all been there with those). A coincidence! But had the newsreader said "republican" or "royalist" at that instant, I'd either have thought that it had been a small coincidence or not a coincidence at all. Yet the democrat-democrat collision was no more or less likely than a democrat-republican or a democrat-royalist one (or, for that matter, a democrat-ANYTHING one). Reading deep things into coincidences is a waste of time. Meaningful coincidences are about as useful as meaningless coincidences. Nothing sinister going on there. Same with all this magic-number guff that has been writ large here and which has severely degraded this thread. I love talking about religion vs science (hello, Joe! :-) ), but the thread has fatally strayed from that into obscurantist nonsense about people who hardly deserved to be talked about.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 04:45 PM

Even the Greeks agreed prcession was bound up in myth:
(Egyptian Priest) O Solon, Solon There is a story, which even you have preserved, that once upon a time Paethon, the son of Helios, having yoked the steeds in his father’s chariot, because he was not able to drive them in the path of his father, burnt up all that was upon the earth, and was himself destroyed by a thunderbolt.Now this has the form of a myth, but really signifies a declination of the bodies moving in the heavens around the earth

so said Plato, in The Timæus Dialogues, 360 BC


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 05:46 PM

Thanks for reminding of Timaeus, Iains. I read a lot of Plato and Aristotle when I was about 12-14, because I was trying to get my head round some of the stuff I had been told in religion classes, but haven't read that particular one since. So I have just ordered a copy of several of Plato's works, including that one. However, since it is so long ago I don't think I will say much more, at least until I have re-read them.

More generally, though, the most relevant aspect of what the Greeks thought is the reason I was looking at it. Much of Christianity is described using Aristotlian philosophy. This is understandable because that approach was so dominant in western thinking through Aquinus and right up to the modern day. The slight drawback is that almost no one outside the Catholic Churches and its descendants uses Aristoltle at all; it has been superseded in medicine, in natural sciences and elsewhere, so it is no surprise it not the approach in philosophy either.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 05:54 PM

If people googled the esoteric number 43,200 they would get all sorts of junk. ~26,000 is the current accepted precession. Ancient cultures measured time differently but the span is the same. Like in religion some things have more than one name. I would heed to Iains on this one.
http://www.ancient-wisdom.com/precession.htm

The point is missed to dwell on a measurement like saying the Piri Reis map of Antarctica is a copy.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 06:54 PM

The only mention that I have made about Velikovsky is that he advocated catastrophism and was was treated in an abysmal fashion by the scientific community, who further conspired to prevent publication of his books, .
I have already quoted 170 major impact craters have been logged so far and it is estimated 90% of impact records are lost due to terrestrial dynamics. It is beyond dispute that these were catastrophic events.
Newton is praised for his work with apples, he also dabbled with alchemy
below a fairly rational discussion concerning uniformitarianism and catastrophism
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2018/04/25/uniformitarian-impact-craters-same-as-it-ever-was/

Same with all this magic-number guff that has been writ large here and which has severely degraded this thread.

Nothing magical at all about it, just cycles of increasing complexity, that may appear as magic to the ignorant that do not understand. Perhaps Donuel could explain with far greater clarity than I


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 06:56 PM

Well you two certainly vie with each other.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 08:45 PM

Hmmmm. Iains. I don't want to get into a 'thing' about making you feel the object of abuse. Velikovsky was the object of - I'm not gonna call it abuse - but he managed to get a controversial book published by a reputable publisher and what was in the book was not science. I've had my say, above.

There is more out there than can possibly be true. There are well listened to radio shows that broadcast hours and hours of stories about extra terrestrials, ghost whisperers, time travelers, bible re-translators, and the show I'm thinking of, Coast-To-Coast, does a very clever thing in occasionally having a reputable scientist on board, or at least a science fiction movie critic. So I listen to it to get to sleep. They think Velikovsky and Von Danekin and other folks such as Tesla are oracles. And Tesla is included because he supposedly sent a U.S. ship through time. The very personable hosts of this radio show are quick to say that they don't personally endorse each and every speaker, but are in the business of giving everyone their say, a freedom of expression argument. It helps me get to sleep and entertains me, but I try not to confuse anything I hear on that show as akin to reality. Especially the nostrums that are the advertisers.

(I will avoid the politics I hear on the AM band, but I rarely hear anything akin to reality there, either).

There is more to say on the subject of religion and science, but I'm going to prepare that post carefully and not get it mixed in with the points I'm trying to make in this message.

I'm very much enjoying this thread and the folks in it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 09:07 PM

Courtesy of Chris Smithers



Well, Eve told Adam
Snakes? I've had 'em!
Let's get outta here!
Go raise this family someplace outta town.

They left the garden just in time
With the landlord cussin' right behind.
They headed East,
And they finally settled down.

One thing led to another:
A bunch of sons,
One killed his brother
And they kicked him out with nothin' but his clothes.

And the human race survived
'Cause all those brothers found wives
But where they came from
Ain't nobody knows.

Then came the flood
Go figure...
Just like New Orleans only bigger.
No one who couldn't swim would make it through.

The lucky ones were on a boat
Think "circus"
And then make it float
I hope nobody pulls the plug on you!

How they fed that crowd is a mystery.
It ain't down in the history,
But it's a cinch they didn't
Live on cakes and jam.

Lions don't eat cabbage
And in spite of that old adage,
I ain't never seen one
Lie down with a lamb.

(Long guitar riff)

Well, Charlie Darwin looked so far
Into the way things are.
He caught a glimpse of God's
Unfolding plan.

God said: "I'll make some DNA"
They can use it any way they want
From paramecium
Right up to man."

"They'll have sex
And mixed up sections of their code
They'll have mutations...
The whole thing works like clockwork over time."

"I'll just sit back in the shade
While everyone gets laid.
That's what I call
Intelligent design."

Yeah, you and your cat named Felix,
Both wrapped up in that double helix,
Is what we call
Intelligent design


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 09:29 PM

Iains, I Jot. I don't write for extreme clarity.
I write in outline form to fit in the box. A post will time out on me as a rule, besides I am too lazy to compose detailed essays for fun. As it is I am just a bit faster writer than Stephen Hawking was.

The minor disagreements in this thread are the 'not seeing the forest for the trees' type. I do not see angry religion vs science arguments. It is fun exploring the mysteries and conundrums of ancient wisdom and occurrences That correlate with modern scientific discoveries.

One of the most banal and insipid TV shows about ancient astronaut theories is actually quite beautiful when watched without sound. There are ancient ruins, archeology, archetecture, art and carvings.
I have concluded there is ancient wisdom we do not have and we have technology they did not have. Our rebuilding of civilizations took a different path or influence.

The Younger Dryer Comet impact did more damage to civilizations than the burning of the library in Alexandria. Older impacts that were a million years ago was too long ago to imprint itself on Human beings to my point of view.

If masonic lore taught anything about the archetecture of the ancient world I would still be a Mason. Instead they teach open mindedness and social evolution. If the Catholic church could explain how we knew the the features of an ice free Antarctica thousands of years ago I would be Catholic.

Mysteries do not give up their secrets easily. Science is what we have. But it sometimes occurs to me that the western world's concept of hearesy might have destroyed or secreted away valuable information of our deepest history. Science and religion could bolster each other.
When they do, wake me up for it will be a time of enlightenment.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Nov 18 - 09:52 PM

BTW the great flood and an impact event does coincide with geological evidence. The Geologist who discovered this was also vilified for a lifetime until proven correct and was honored. Same ol story.

Coast to Coast isn't as entertaining as it used to be. That show evolved from a show by Long John Nebble.

I even did some late nite radio shows of mysteries on WHAM.
I ended up doing more debunking than 'bunking' :^/


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 02:34 AM

Another distinction I think is worthh drawing is the distinction between knowledge and understanding. Knowledge accumulates over generations and once discovered understanding is no longer essential in science. Understanding, however, is an individual thing and my understanding dies with me. Sorry about that, but that's life.

I would say that science is primarily about collecting knowledge, whereas religion is primarily about that personal understanding. By way of explanation, please enjoy this equation of motion:

s = ut + 0.5*y2

When studying for what was 'O' level physics we dutifully learned this and the other equations of motions and could apply them as required. In 'A' level physics we covered other topics.

So, in my school at least, the knowledge of the equations mattered. No one ever tried to get us to understand the relationship between them. However that 0.5 and 2 leap out at a mathematician: that is a strong hint of a double integration. and sure enough, all the equations of motions are simple integrations of a constant acceleration.


That is the difference I draw between knowledge and understanding.

So, in at least some places, science teaching is pretty bad at teaching understanding, and the examination system does not help, because presence of knowledge is so much easier to detect than presence of understanding.

On the other hand, religion teaching is not just bad at teaching understanding, it is truly appalling, in my experience. Religion is often taught with exactly the things Steve was complaining of - a set of assertions and rules to be followed, with no attempt to develop an understanding. In many cases a request for explanation is met with a statement like 'This is a mystery: you are not meant to understand it.' And, since this has been the case for a long time, I found that my teachers didn't really have an understanding either.

My religious life - leaving aside the practical stuff like foodbanks etc - I see as a search for understanding, not a set of rules to follow.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Joe Offer
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 02:56 AM

Steve Shaw says: Religious belief leads to the teaching of certainties

Boy, that certainly hasn't been my experience. I think I'd reword it to Healthy religious belief leads to the exploration of uncertainties

Joe Offer, from the Unitarian Branch of the Catholic Church

P.S. another one of your posts left me strangely hungry for Camembert...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 04:12 AM

DMcG. You make a very valid point about knowledge and understanding. Some are lucky and understanding is concurrent with assimilation of knowledge. For lesser mortals, such as I, understanding can come very much later,or perhaps not at all.
   There are many events detailed in the Bible that present problems for acceptance.The Book of Enoch also presents problems. It is regarded as canonical by the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church and Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church, but not by any other Christian groups.
I wonder just what Watchers and Nephelim are, and just what were those trips to heaven about? Is the old testament supposed to be purely allegorical? If literal there are some hair raising events require explanation? Ancient Indian texts can also provide descriptions of events that raise all sorts of interesting questions depending upon how you view them. Just how many levels of meaning are we supposed to dig through?
There are certainly an abundance of uncertainties to explore and the way modern science is structured any controversial view is labelled heresy long before any sort of grudging acceptance is seen,
Lord of the flies demonstrates very clearly what undisciplined groups are capable of.
https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/religion-science/


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 04:15 AM

Tell me where the uncertainties are in the Lord's Prayer, Joe, almost the chief mantra of Christianity.

Good post, DMcG. I well remember that the bods at school who did best in maths exams were the ones who did their differential calculus mechanistically, who got good at jumping through hoops but with little understanding of the processes they were working through. I found the whole thing an obstacle course of incomprehensible concepts and steps, which is probably why I ended up being a biologist. :-)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 05:44 AM

I'll second that; Live and learn , die and forget it all.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 06:37 AM

I think of a Boeing contract to build a 777. There was a work stoppage to wait for parts. People were reassigned and the half built plane sat there for months. When the company tried to start the 777 work back up they ran into to problems trying to figure out exactly where they left off but without the original people on the job the plane eventually became a total loss and used for spare parts only.

A delay can cause immense setbacks. Kill JFK RFK and King and you will have a hundred years of social change setback. Interrupt two generations and you can get a 500 year setback. Interrupt 5 generations so no teachers are left and you may lose an entire civilization.
When you lose understanding and knowledge and try and start over the path to recovery may not exist.

An impact is all it takes as one of many set backs to end a civilization, particularly with electromagnetically stored digital information.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 06:47 AM

When civilizations collapse you're only left with religion to safekeep legendary principles.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 07:37 AM

Donuel you make a very valid point. It is likely climate change has collapsed many societies or at the least severely stressed them.
https://nsidc.org/sites/nsidc.org/files/files/NRCabruptcc.pdf

1) the dark ages
https://www.atmos.washington.edu/2001Q2/211/groupE/andy.html (some interesting ideas)

2)The collapse of the Anasazi peoples of the American Southwest
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/climate-changes-coincide/

3)The collapse of the Assyrian Empire

https://climatenewsnetwork.net/fall-of-ancient-civilization-offers-climate-warning/
Many other examples although they are contentious.

It is worth noting that pre agricultural societies could not store or trade with any success thus increasing their vulnerability. With no written records stories offered the only transmission medium for accumulated knowledge.

The research is ongoing and the links incomplete but I would suspect the link between climate change and abrupt ending of civilisations will be reinforced.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 08:44 AM

Even our modern bible has similar legends that were passed on from the Torah, Egyptians, Assyrians , Sumerians and earlier societies. Far Eastern religions relate to western legends to a lesser degree but there are similarities to be found. Mayan religions took a different path but do address catastrophe. Depending upon how ridiculous a religion can become, the man made failure of an emerging civilization can be assured. But in the absence of a viable science a religion can sometimes be the only lifeline to guide a civilization. An emerging science usually begins with looking up at the night sky. Ergo astronomy arises first.

So religion can be a saving grace in the darkest of times. -Steve-
Science can be a savior in the brightest of times.- DMcG-


Egyptians did a good job of passing down some technology but we are yet blind to the nuance and detail of their emerging science. We are more aware of Roman science yet we still have not determined some of their formulas for concrete.

So my point is; in times of great despair, Science is first to go,
but religion lives on for better or worse.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 09:16 AM

It is an aside, but I recommend The Chrysalids as a book exploring that idea. Within it is a reference to a (fictitious) book called "Nicholson's Repentances" which always seems to me to be an attempt by scientists to pass some important genetic ideas down to later generations by casting it as religion. Your view may differ.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: robomatic
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 10:03 AM

There is a story of a people that had an ancient tradition whereby all the adults assembled precisely after harvest at a holy site in the woods near their village and performed an ornate dance. This would assure that over the next year crops would thrive, weather would cooperate, trees bear fruit, babies be healthy and mothers alive; everyone knew that performing this rite would guarantee nothing but good.
Over time and displacement they forgot the precise timing of the dance but they knew where to go and the steps of the dance and the words of the incantation.
Over more time no one could be sure of the precise utterances of the prayer, so the dance proceeded with fewer words and more humming.
With the passage of decades they couldn't be sure of the exact holy place, but they were still pretty sure of the steps of the dance.
By modern times, their descendants can only say that there WAS a holy place, there WAS a magic chant, and that some kind of dance was performed, but the knowledge that this happened is all they have left.



In a similar parable, I recall a story about a teacher leading a group of very young students as refugees. As a means of keeping them together in the case that she won't survive to complete her task, she gives the kids a box and tells them that the box contains a vital message that MUST be delivered. Only when they arrive at their destination do they discover that the box is empty.

The Pope is disputing an atheist, and in exasperation tells him (fatuous Italian accent used to boost the humor) "You are like a blind man in a room with no light, searching for a black cat that isn't there!"
Exasperated atheist to the Pope: "NO! YOU are the blind man in the room with no light searching for a black cat that isn't there, but YOU FOUND IT!"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Joe Offer
Date: 08 Nov 18 - 11:59 PM

Steve Shaw says: Tell me where the uncertainties are in the Lord's Prayer, Joe, almost the chief mantra of Christianity.

Can't say I find any uncertainties in the Lord's Prayer, Steve. Can't say I find any certainties there, either. Creeds and catechisms have certainties - but to my mind, those certainties exist only within the belief system a person professes. The Nicene Creed is the telling of the story of the Christian people. It is inherently consistent, within the context of the Christian faith. But is it universally true? To my mind, no. It is more-or-less incomprehensible (and irrelevant) in other contexts.

I'm beginning to think that the word "believe" is of secondary importance in religious practice. Practicing faith is a way of life, not a subscription to a list of bullet points.

e.g., Was Mary a Virgin? Well, yeah, I say so because it's part of the story. But do I care whether she was a virgin or not? No, not at all. It just doesn't make any difference to me, one way or the other.

-Joe-


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 02:29 AM

With some trepidation, I need to quote two bits of the Bible that I find relevant to this thread, because I think there is an important different between them. The scene for the first is that Jesus has been asked what is the greatest commandment and, according to Luke:

He answered, "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbour as yourself.'"

Now, this is often said to be a quotation from Deuteronomy, which says:

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength."


(Quotations over!)

But it isn't, quite. The New Testament version adds in an 'all your mind' that is not in the Old Testament version. Now, what does that mean? In my interpretation, that means we have to all our mental abilities to try to figure out what on earth all this is about. And that is in religion and science. And indeed in art and literature and every single thing that tells us anything about the world or each other. Someone who claims to be a Christian but denies science is, to my way of thinking, going against this greatest commandment.

Food for thought, anyway.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 03:49 AM

Did morality exist without religion?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 04:14 AM

One of the things I cannot forgive, which the major religions have imposed upon humankind, is misogyny. The reverberations of this attitude have continued over time until the present day, as they're deeply rooted in our culture (and many other cultures) and are proving very hard to eradicate.

How many potentially brilliant women scientists down the centuries have been excluded from contributing to our knowledge because they've been regarded as of inferior intelligence compared to men?

Even in the fifties and sixties, my grammar school was suggesting careers in nursing, teaching, typing and so on, but never research in any of the Science disciplines, or even a University course of any sort, for its female pupils.

I was lucky in that my parents always encouraged us to seek the highest education available, and didn't merely hand us a pinny and a book on baby care!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 04:18 AM

I am uncertain whether you could say morality 'did' exist without religion - in the earliest days the two were so interwoven the question may not even be meaningful. However it is quite clear that today you can have morality without religion.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 04:30 AM

I agree, Sen. It is one of many areas we have been plagued with for many millennia - I am sure the Abrahamic religions just took up the misogyny of the time, but they have done precious little to eliminate it. On some areas at least, they have fought to preserve it.

There is a Bank of England consultation for the new person to appear on the £50 note. It needs to be a scientist. I suggested Herga Ayrton who, in addition to her work as a scientist is one of the front-runners in getting women recognised in science and invented the Ayrton Fan which protected an unknowable number of soldiers from the effects of gas attacks.

I doubt if they will pick her.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 04:37 AM

Ah DMcG, we tackled that one in my Philosophy seminars at University.
We explored the possibility of 'self-evident truths'. For example, is it obvious that one shouldn't kill, steal, lie etc.? Does one trace these ethics back to early religions (eg the Ten Commandments), or are they natural adaptations of human life in community?

I personally reckon the morality came first, with the urge to bring some kind of order to the behaviour of groups of humans in primitive times. Co-operative living needed basic rules and structure.
Later, I expect religions built on this and maintained it was what God wanted/ordered.
As to the latter, who knows if He does?

By the way, with regard to Science and females, I studied Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Maths to 'O' Level (in addition to French, Latin, German, English, Geography, History and Art), and many of the girls had opted out of those Science subjects. Most of my Science lessons were awash with boys.
Our Physics teacher, a ghastly chap, used to call us few girls 'The Dears', and was convinced we should go and learn how to type, cook and sew.
Unfortunately for him, my feisty feminist sister followed me into his Physics lessons a few years later, and let him have it right on the nose. She confronted him after a lesson and tackled his attitude. (No-one ever dared challenge my sister!) He apparently modified the misogyny after that.
The poor lass then needed to find a Medical School that had a place for a woman. She had to wait a year before St Andrews offered her a place, in spite of her having brilliant 'A' level results.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 04:58 AM

My wife's grandmother was an early science student at Liverpool University. Despite very high results all the way though the course and in the written examinations, she was note allowed to pass without completing the practical - and the University could not find a suitable chaperone, so she was not permitted to take it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 05:48 AM

"Our Father who art in heaven" sounds like a stated certainty to me, Joe, as does "as it is in heaven", and the non-Catholic add-on about the kingdom, power and glory is very assertive. The thing is that Christian worship requires repetition of these words again and again and again. The more they are chanted, the less easy it is to question them. It's a conditioning process. You are a thoughtful man who is troubled by being told what to think. Millions of Christians take these things at face value. I hate to tell you this, but that's the whole idea. Your own powers of reflection on religious matters doesn't justify that policy of conditioning people's minds. Of major religions I suppose Christianity is a tad more benign than many. I was not free to say what I liked or to question certain tenets in my religious miseducation lessons at school. There were threats of punishment. Threats of hellfire even. I trust things have moved on somewhat. I should like to see a world in which heresy laws didn't exist and in which there is no such thing as being able to be accused of insulting religion (but not believers, who deserve the same respect as everyone else, provided they don't misuse their beliefs: let's not go there). You can't show that there is anything to insult, and, in any case, your God is big enough to take it by all accounts, even if his adherents can be a little more delicate.

Was Mary a virgin? Did Jesus turn water into wine or come away from a paddle in the sea with dry sandals? Your point is taken on matters such as these, but you should be asking yourself why these things have to be part of the narrative in the first place. It seems that having a very good earthly man teaching unimpeachable morals isn't good enough. The miraculous add-ons are infantilising. They are intended to add awe to something that, on the face of it, is awesome enough in itself. Awestruck people are much easier to keep onboard than those who question everything. I know which camp I'd rather be in.

As for religion and morality, ancient religions, with their misogyny, object worship, blood sacrifices and burnings at the stake are the very essence of immorality. Pretending that religion is the source of, or even a contributor to universal moral compass is simply mischievous.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 05:53 AM

Some interesting "numerology":
"Currently we are in the last centuries of Pisces (the fish), while the previous constellation was Aries (the ram). The change between Aries and Pisces happened in about AD 10, and this is why Jesus was said to have been born as a Lamb of God (Aries) but became a Fisher of Men (Pisces). As one can readily see, the last vestiges of an ancient astrological religion are still clearly visible within early Nazarene Christianity.

However, back in the early part of the Middle Kingdom of Egypt, a similar change in the constellations was about to occur - Taurus was about to cede its rule to the next constellation in line – Aries. A computer planisphere can precisely date these astronomical eras and it appears that the era of Taurus (the bull) lasted until about 1750 BC, when Aries (the sheep) came into ascendance. This date is very close to the era of the first Hyksos pharaohs, the Shepherd Kings of Egypt. It is quite possible, therefore, that this change in the astronomical alignments may have influenced the rise of the Hyksos Shepherd pharaohs (Followers of Aries?) in Lower Egypt, and perhaps even precipitated the civil war in which they were eventually thrown out of Egypt."

Bull worship
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horned_deity


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:13 AM

Religion and science are on an opposing sliding scale in terms of nessesity. I find this discussion lost in the weeds of scripture without an understanding of the greater good and dissapointing if one must even ask if morality can possibly exist without religion.

Be that as it may, good for you Senofou for discovering that your religion is the source of the mysogeny that stymied your education for a lifetime. And if you didn't, you should have. By participating in a scientific occupation you have seen science take up the slack where religion leaves off. Yet the touch of human kindness is essentially outside the bounds of both religion or science.(although desribed by both)

I would go so far as to say compassion (not morality) is coded in our genes by natural selection for the continuation of our species. Where it is not, there is danger, or in the darkest of times, necesssity.
As in WWII sometimes evil is good to defeat a greater evil.

Will we redesign our genes and exo genetic triggers? With all the hazards I would rather trust millions of years of experience and slow improvements and mistakes.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:20 AM

Redesigning our DNA haphazardy is one bite of the apple of knowledge I would not take.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:29 AM

I am afraid I have forgotten almost everything about this short poem, including who wrote, when, its title, or even if I have it exactly right, but I still find it thought provoking:

He was too big to be nailed to a cross
But still they try to crush him
Between the pages of a black book.


Their scripture is an important starting point for anyone who is religious. But it is a mistake to be circumscribed by it. In my opinion.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:39 AM

Some minds have suggested the travelers by extraordinary craft that we may have encountered are merely redesigned organic low mass,low inertia versions of aliens 'back home' who are not good candidaates to make a long journey. One can see the advantages.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:52 AM

I think it was RS Thomas who wrote that poem. 'A Welsh Testament'.

Our vicar years ago used to say that strict and over-fundamentalist religion tries to cram God into a matchbox.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:54 AM

Many thanks for that, Sen. I have known I have not known (!) for a long time now.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:58 AM

I had a bible so small it did fit in a matchbox, sure ya gotta go with what you know but you should not be circumsized by it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 09:45 AM

I watched the final episode in Cox's series 'Human Universe' last night. He showed an underground seed store somewhere in Scandinavia, in which specimens of practically all the seeds in the world of use to humans are stored. The places is over 100m underground in solid rock, protected by an air lock.
The aim is to save from extinction any plant forms for the future.

He also showed an American facility where they fire lasers at great speed towards a small target 1mm across, in an attempt to produce a tiny energy source, which would not involve burning fossil fuels, but leave only helium behind.

He also visited a NASA place and spoke to an astronaut who had left a small photo of his family on the surface of the moon.

Cox has a mesmerising and rather sinister way of smiling while he talks, then extinguishing the smile suddenly. It's a bit chilling to be honest.
My Muslim husband watches these documentaries with intense interest.
His remark as the final titles rolled was, "Allahu akbar!" (God is the greater) meaning that the Universe is limitless, space is dauntingly huge, but God's power and importance exceeds it all.
I'm not quite sure if I agree with him. But I try to have Faith!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 12:28 PM

Did morality exist without religion?

Certainly. Religions appropriated the concept, tried to make it theirs, but many ancient philosophers understood the concept in religion-free terms. This was something we were given to understand early in graduate school philosophy classes (in the philosophy and religion department at my university.)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 01:37 PM

The reason I said I was unsure about that question on morality is that I was thinking of far earlier times than the Greeks, Egyptians and so on: back to the times that Sen was hinting of when we are talking of extended family groups and simple tribes. On those later times, certianly you could have morality without religion. Now Sen is, I think, right that at that level you could have a morality based on what is done and not-done, and that's it. But as soon as you ask the question why, three variants of 'Because X decrees it' emerge. If X is 'the Chief' you have some sort of proto-dictatorship. If X is 'we have all agreed' you have a democracy of some kind, and if X is 'the gods' you have an early religion. And it seems to me the 'why' question is likely to be almost simultaneous with the rule. And all three answers may arise at the same time. So, in short, I am unsure.

In terms of anthropology, I am not aware of any tribes identified that do not have a religion, but it not something I know much about, so am happy to be corrected.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 01:45 PM

That's absolutely right, SRS. There are animal instinctive behaviours whose function is to protect and perpetuate individuals and the species. Those behaviour patterns have great evolutionary value in spite of their basic, "unthinking" nature. Species with social organisation structures are great examples, as is flocking behaviour in birds and fish. One may be seen to be "moral," worker bees sacrificing themselves to protect the colony. Or the other "immoral," birds or fish gathering in their thousands, each individual essentially acting to lessen its own chances of being picked off by a predator. Looking after numero uno. But even that behaviour is "moral" in the sense that a large assembly looks far too menacing for a predator to want to attack at all, so the community is protected even by behaviour that hardly has that in mind. Isn't evolution wonderful. The nurturing of young is seen as a beautiful and "moral" activity, but it's also "immoral" in that the primary interest is basically to protect the bloodline. It's less "immoral" and more "moral" when it occurs within communities, especially when crèches are involved (it does happen). When we start to consider humans, we have to drop the "unthinking" bit because, well, we can think and reflect and try to balance. But we retain all those old, primitive behaviours and we hone them into the thing we call our moral code. Over time that is modified and becomes highly developed, to the point where we adopt behaviours that don't possess much evolutionary value but are more tied up with tradition, ritual even. Only apropos of that last point does religion start to creep in. Very much the Johnny-come-lately in the formation of human morality, and he isn't always welcome, especially when he encourages such negativities as heresy, religious wars and martyrdom. The very best of humanity comes when we learn to stand on our own two feet and eschew crutches based on myth and fallacious thinking. We can still leave room for imagination...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 02:31 PM

One may be seen to be "moral," worker bees sacrificing themselves to protect the colony.
They also murder drones by forced exile from the colony when autumn arrives and resources get stretched. It may be instinctive survival behaviour, but it is not moral behaviour.
For morality to exist the power of reason must exist. Is this not restricted to homo sapiens?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 02:37 PM

In a word, no.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 02:41 PM

I think a useful word here might be 'altruism'. Maternal instinct, acting for the good of the colony, protecting a herd etc - would this be classified as altruism? I actually don't think so. It's mere instinct.

Altruism (when applied to morality) is self-sacrifice for the good of another, without reference to survival of one's genes or any other benefit to oneself. Pity is another moral stimulus which may give rise to altruistic actions.
I don't believe animals possess this quality.
(Even our cats are selfish little buggers!)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 03:35 PM

T would like to say the linked paper is interesting but my view is that the publication date should have been April !st.


https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/moral-animal/


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 04:14 PM

That's an interesting article Iains. It appears to be chiefly concerned with humans' treatment of animals. I've always been a defender of humane and compassionate methods of animal husbandry and the use of them in scientific laboratory research etc.
But I'm also interested in what distinguishes us from animals with regard to moral behaviour.
I maintain that they don't have any, and that morality is an essentially human characteristic.
Religion has harnessed this and added the God factor, insisting that God commands us to ...(here follows some sort of list or code, depending on which religion is doing the dictating) These commands are merely cooked up in the heads of some rather controlling chaps in history. One can't be sure God really wants this stuff, or even if He exists at all.

I've always been a little doubtful about 'conscience'. In Moral Philosophy, this was quite a stumbling block in our discussions. Science may invent a new 'thing' (contraceptive pill, organ transplants, euthanasia for example) and we're supposed to consult our 'conscience' when judging if these are good things or not.
But conscience can deceive and is not self-evidently right just because we feel it is. It's very dodgy in fact! (Ethics has always fascinated me.)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 05:57 PM

the altruism hormone
The neuropeptide oxytocin regulates parochial altruism particularly in new mothers -


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 06:09 PM

I have seen cats display a compassion and sacrifice for others such as defend a human baby against a malevolent dog. Greed is quite a different thing.
Especially over Friskies cat food.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 06:28 PM

On the subject of morality and our rather odd views of it, my daughter has just sent me this, which I post without further comment:

Worked Levinson Wood show tonight. At one point he was showing footage of his time spent "hunting Isis". I found it a strange contradiction to have a room full of people perfectly fine watching recent battles in on going wars whilst at the same time wearing poppies...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 07:10 PM

As an educated person who likes to be seen as open-minded, I'm very uncomfortable with any religion that rejects or denies the findings of science.

But as a religious person, I feel very uncomfortable with those who apply the rules of science to religious thinking. I see religion as based on poetry and myth and imagination - an appreciation of the artistry and beauty of the universe that just isn't possible with the Scientific Method.

Now, I suppose there are those who can say that myth is unnecessary because they have other ways of appreciating the beauty of the universe. Those who don't understand or appreciate poetry or art, can say the same about poetry and art.

Some people practice religion in distorted ways, and come up with results that are harmful, or at least in extremely bad taste - but does that mean that religion is wrong? Some people have distorted views of art, and come up with scantily-clad Indian princess pictures on black velvet - but does that mean that art is wrong?

Religion is but one of many perspectives on the universe that surrounds us. I find it helpful and very valuable to me, but I admit that other people use religion in ways that are repulsive to me.

Some people thrive by living a life with a religious perspective, and some people don't. Why is it necessary to condemn something, simply because it doesn't work constructively for everybody?

As for myself, I prefer tolerance.

-Joe-


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 07:11 PM

My odd view of morality is that I find it offensive when the religious wield it like a weapon against the non religious as if only the believers have a monopoly on morality. I have one word to say about it
Preists.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 07:14 PM

My view of morality, is that it ought to be rational - not based on arbitrary rules and dictates, but rather on what's good for the world and for most people.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 07:32 PM

Joe, I celebrate religion as the life line in bad times, but it should not be on equal footing or superior standing compared to science in the good times.
Religion has its place in times of civilization collapse' Science has its place as we advance. To believe this will require a great deal of tolerence. Especially in the God Business LLC.

Perhaps our civilization is at a halfway point in which science and religion have equal footing.
The factor that determines which has more relvance is 'TIME'
The religion of science is ETHICS.

You Joe may be open minded but I think you will always view religion as God's great hit and science is OK too.
As guiding principles in civilization go;
I too think religion is great but primarily only in certain times.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 07:38 PM

God's greatest hit- ? I suspect it is life but frankly I'm not sure not being omnicient.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 07:47 PM

Donuel, I view religion as poetry. I like poetry, and it feeds my soul.

I am also fascinated by science and value it highly.

It's not that they're equal, or that one is better than the other. They're just different things. Same with apples and oranges - they're just different. No need to compare or contrast them.

-Joe-


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:06 PM

Mind you, I am not this fiesty in the morning :^/
Most assuredly both religion and science will continue to evolve.
By their nature and needs, science will evolve more.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 Nov 18 - 08:53 PM

Senoufou, what's the difference between "conscience" and a rational decision? I don't think there is any difference. So, conscience and rational decisions have the same flaws, and the same merits.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 03:13 AM

But I'm also interested in what distinguishes us from animals with regard to moral behaviour.
I maintain that they don't have any, and that morality is an essentially human characteristic


I suspect Steve is right that at least some aspects of morality have an evolutionary basis and you would therefore expect to find a morality on other species, though I thought his actual examples rather too anthropomorphic, and the way he used quotations the whole time suggests he had that concern as well. I also did not think his examples gave enough weight to choice. Nevertheless, as I say I broadly agreed.

There are formal definitions of morality we could bring in, but rather than do that, here are some things I think are characteristic.

* It must involve a choice of behaviours, both of which could occur. There is no point on having a "Thou shalt not kill" rule unless both killing and not-killing are options to choose between.

* Some implicit or explicit understanding has arisen that 'the right thing to do' is not the thing that most directly benefits the individual. (It is possible, or even probable, that in the long term the other behaviour is more beneficial to the individual via a rather nebulous 'group support' or similar.

* The response to the transgression involves other members of the group not just the two most immediately involved.


If you agree that those are key characteristics, then we see them quite widely in the animal kingdom, particularly around rules for sharing food.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Senoufou
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 04:09 AM

Joe, the reason why I distrust conscience is that many people use it as their reason for choices of behaviour, decision-making and actions, when it simply means it's what they wish to do.
Feeling something is 'right' according to one's conscience doesn't make it so.
I've always felt that society's ethics and codes of behaviour are liable to be dodgy and not 'self-evidently' the best way forward. But that's only my view, and it's just as dodgy as anyone else's.

However, I accept that in travelling through life, one has to apply some sort of rule/code for oneself. This is where such words as tolerance, kindness, compassion, empathy, honesty, fidelity, support in trouble, altruism, courage and so on come into play.

But actually, even these sterling qualities can be misguided and inapplicable to certain situations.

Tolerance - towards paedophiles, domestic abusers, Jihadi?
Courage - risking one's life when one has a family at home to support?
Compassion - for prisoners who have mugged the elderly or stabbed a youth in a drug feud?
Non-violence - if a burglar enters one's house and assaults one's children?
I suppose I could sum all this up as 'Nothing is certain and nothing is self-evidently right or true'.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 04:54 AM

Before terms like conscience, morality, ethics are used they really need a rigid definition, as they can mean different things to different people, and change over time. It is also necessary to define what a human is and clearly distinguish between human attributes and evolutionary traits in the animal kingdom that may cause confusion.I think we can be certain that the three wise monkeys at no point sat down and discussed aesthetics, logic, metaphysics, epistemology, and axiology. If not capable of discussing a concept and understanding it, how can actions be controlled by it.
Does a hornet rationalise it's actions before stinging, or is it an innate response to a threat?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 06:56 AM

"Now, I suppose there are those who can say that myth is unnecessary because they have other ways of appreciating the beauty of the universe. Those who don't understand or appreciate poetry or art, can say the same about poetry and art."

Er, I don't think that anyone is saying that myth is unnecessary. It's the extrapolation of myth into religious tenets that creates the sticking point. I think you're making a false equivalence when you compare myth-to-religion with poetry or art. In the latter two there are flights of fancy, along with music perhaps the highest achievements of human imagination, but there is the full expectation by the artist (provided he hasn't been bought off as a proselytiser: many an artist has been bought off, of course, as they have to make a living, but all the ones we regard as the greatest have managed to retain their integrity) that disbelief will be suspended and that the recipient will be complicit in that. With religion, disbelief is expected to be scrapped. In leaving myth as just myth, without the religion, then for sure myth can be set alongside poetry and art. But you're not really defending just myth here, rather the extension of myth into belief. Two very different things.

As for choice and morality, that's a very interesting path to go down. To take an example, unless I should become severely mentally ill, I am not capable of choosing to commit child rape, let's say. So to say that morality must have an element of choice is at best moot. Yes there are people who commit child rape and no-one here is going to deny the immorality of that. But, to even out the supposed choice element, we'd have to plunge into the absurdity of saying that not committing child rape is moral. Well not committing child rape is just normal. There's no choice available to most people. The choice concept is very skewed. Of course, there are far more marginal cases in which the choice becomes almost a dilemma. We know that producing meat on today's scale is unsustainable for the human race and the planet, and I know that I eat too much meat. So my wife has just presented me with a surprise bacon butty. It would be very easy for me to choose to not eat it, but then I'd offend my wife who's gone to the trouble of making it for me. In absolute terms the moral thing to do would be to not eat it on principle. To overcome that inclination and eat it just to show appreciation would be slightly less moral.

DMcG, you were correct in your interpretation of my use of speech marks. The examples I chose are real ones, and the speech marks were intended to avoid the anthropomorphism you demurred at.

I've eaten the bacon butty, by the way. Discuss.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 07:16 AM

I made the concept of 'choice' one of my key criteria because I wanted to eliminate actions that are entirely 'pre-programmed.' Flocking is undoubtedly a real behaviour but I am not convinced that it can be considered a moral choice to flock or not to flock. As usual I am talking well outside my field of expertise, but short of illness or perhaps nesting, isn't the response to a particular predictor something better thought as pre-programmed than chosen?

However, as I say, when it comes to feeding behaviours I see something much less automatic, which to me can be labelled as a moral choice on their part. Not a human morality, of course, but still something I would be content to call moral behaviour.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 08:30 AM

The education provided by Myth is profound. The myths of the Greeks was relatively non religious secular methods of learning while in India they were more closely associated with religion.
The exploration of similar myths and the journey of the Hero are well treated by Joseph Campbell in his Power of Myth books. I still rely on the myths I learned there such as the 'trickster god'. It reveals many nuances regarding our current era.
Joseph Campbell is well known in America but I do not know if he was televised in Europe. Joseph was often interviewed by Bill Moyers before his death.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 08:34 AM

The temptation is to think that all animal behaviour patterns have evolutionary value, and maybe they have. That clearly involves killing prey or competitors in ways humanity may find unpalatable. Think about a cat toying with a mouse before giving it the last rites, or a fox killing far more hens than it could ever eat. We have to be a bit careful not to impose human standards of morality on actions like those that, frankly, we don't completely understand. Inserting morality to fill gaps in our understanding of animal behaviour is a bit reminiscent of inserting God to plug gaps in our scientific knowledge.

As for flocking, etc., my abundant use of speech marks in that post was meant to suggest strongly that I was using the word "moral," as I was applying it to animals, advisedly.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 09:13 AM

For Steve, no one else may click here


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 09:14 AM

It all depends on which bus took you to the party.

https://www.allaboutphilosophy.org/morality.htm


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Iains
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 09:21 AM

Myths are far more than fairy tales.

o/essays/indigenous-myths-carry-warning-signals-about-natural-disasters


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 10:50 AM

I think this particular "morality" seam I have gone as far as I intended, so I leave it to others to expand or not as they like. But the sort of animal behaviour which I suggest is worth exploring in terms of an animal-moral system are things like sharing food or eating it entirely oneself. I don't there is necessarily a moral dimension to that, but there is more to consider in that than say foxes killing chickens.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 11:27 AM

It is also necessary to define what a human is and clearly distinguish between human attributes and evolutionary traits in the animal kingdom that may cause confusion. I think we can be certain that the three wise monkeys at no point sat down and discussed aesthetics, logic, metaphysics, epistemology, and axiology. If not capable of discussing a concept and understanding it, how can actions be controlled by it.

Again, No. You can't put humans above everything else on all matters such as behavior and morality. This isn't just about human language - communication and behavior extend beyond humans. And that philosophy site you linked to is tilted toward xtian philosophy. It is necessary to step away from the religions and get into the philosophers who aren't tethered to one particular creation story.

Crow shares food

Swan feeds fish

Swans feed fish

Orangutan sharing with chimps (you can discuss the morality of humans placing such animals in zoos and such awful enclosures)

Monkey's cooperating to get food.

This just touches the surface - you can look for animals helping injured comrades, you can find all sorts of inter-species cooperation and play, you can find combinations of animals with humans that set aside their "worst" instincts and live harmoniously. These would portray that it doesn't require language to understand cooperation and sharing, or brainstem communication levels that are present in vertebrates across the animal kingdom. Philosophers can discuss this but they can't own it, nor can a religion.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Nov 18 - 03:41 PM

A really scary thought is that evolution has been proceeding for four billion years, a time scale that is terrifyingly difficult to get one's head round. Homo sapiens is a tiny blip along that timeline. Homo sapiens is in no way a pinnacle of evolution. Evolution doesn't work towards an endgame or towards perfection and there is no force driving it. If you think about evolution differently to this, then it isn't evolution you're thinking about at all. Human beings evolved to their present state remarkably quickly in the last few tens of thousands of years, a process even more remarkable considering the long length of human generations and the low birth rate. But nothing has happened beyond the bounds of science as we understand it. We can explain human evolution reasonably simply by saying that our most recent non-human ancestors were in the right place at the right time in the right environment and that evolution made some really "good" anatomical and physiological moves (blindly, as ever, and without going into the technical nuts and bolts). The point for this thread is that there's been no sudden spectacular leap from animal-moral to human-moral. We should be happy to see animal traits that we can see moving to human traits, with plenty of overlap. After all, we're just the Naked Ape (cheers, Desmond). I'd far sooner argue that "morality," whatever it is, has evolved and been honed and finessed from animal traits, than argue in favour of religion giving us moral compass. That's utter bullshit.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 11 Nov 18 - 02:11 AM

I think it is worth thinking a little about this quotation from Pope John Paul II:

Science can purify religion from error and superstition.

Now, he did follow that up with a sentence about how religion can benefit science which will be a red rag to a bull to some, but the sentence I quoted was frankly so astonishing that few people, religious or atheist, could take it at face value so immediately started denying he could possibly mean it. What, the 'infallible' leader of the Catholic church saying it has 'errors and superstition' that it needs purifying from? Surely he must mean other religions, not his own? And atheists had a similar problem: this solid monolith of self confident certainty could not possibly say it contained errors - we are certain religion is not like that.

I think he did mean it at face value; in any case I have no problems taking it so myself.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 11 Nov 18 - 05:52 AM

He was wrong, as he was about a lot of things. At the philosophical level, science completely negates religion. Belief in God is a massive obstruction on the path of the real quest for truth. God is an all too facile explanation for things that science finds naturally difficult to explain, and that staunches true curiosity and enquiry, sending them down a false path. Worse than that, God himself is the ultimate when it comes to the inexplicable. If he's really there, he'd be hopping mad at us for all that, having supplied us with massive brains to think things through properly. The Pope's remark is simply another example of religion being dragged kicking and screaming into the modern world as science closes in.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 11 Nov 18 - 02:04 PM

I always thought morals and values was about personal choices about such things as fairness, honesty, courage, generosity, tolerance and not just being told to believe things that are just plain stupid.
What beliefs from religion are we told that are stupid? Let me count the ways. Never mind forget it. Not all but most of it is pure BS.


Way to go DMcG, go out there and purify religion all you want.
It is like a big expensive job called water treatment systems.
But in the end you can drink the water again. But is it improved?

We all know we can make fun of Christianity and Judaism without fear of decapitation so I would steer clear purifying Islam if I were you.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: DMcG
Date: 11 Nov 18 - 04:14 PM

I am not so ambitious, Donuel. I will focus on purifying my own ideas.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Symposium: Exemplary disagreement
From: Donuel
Date: 11 Nov 18 - 04:43 PM

I use Brita filters.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
 


You must be a member to post in non-music threads. Join here.


You must be a member to post in non-music threads. Join here.



Mudcat time: 20 November 6:25 AM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.