Politics, God and Religion vs. Science

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TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 02:51pm PT
Norton, this is an interesting analysis and line of questions, thank you.

And to qualify that I am not trying to set myself up as any sort of ultimate arbiter who understands everything. This forum is one of the first places where I am sharing my own personal musings and levels of understanding on some of this. I do have some experiences and awarenesses that are interesting to examine in the light of this discussion, and in the presence here of some of the people who I most respect in life.

Feb 19, 2013 - 12:41pm PT
Tom,

is not the word "soul" a purely modern human creation to define the essence that goes on after physical death, assuming it does?

Perhaps in a sense, but not really; as discussions along these lines seem to go back as long as we have any human record...a fact which is very interesting to consider just on its own. The part that seems to be a purely modern human creation is the idea of a dead mechanistic universe inhabited by a few recent anomalies of discrete individualistic entities possessing a mysterious spark called self-awareness. To me that concept (which is basic to several modern religions and including atheism) represents the height of hubris and barbarism.

is it fair to assume that your personal belief in a soul is pretty much the same as your own belief in life after death?

I can't really say yes to this, as the question sort of misses the point. It's not exactly that I believe in life after death. It's that I believe that all the universe is alive and possesses a sense of purpose. Just as water experiences phase changes from ice to liquid to steam, so also with what we 'modern' contemporaries consider to be 'living bodies': new born, vital, dying, dead, rotting, earth, rock, etc. whether plant or animal.

let's say that your zygote was born around 10.000 years ago and your entire socialization was based upon not words but gestures and utterances, and therefore the very concept of afterlife or soul never entered your consciousness

Well to start, 10,000 years ago is not really a relevant time period, as many creatures currently live somewhat as you describe; and humans go back at least hundreds of thousands of years. And there are plenty of creatures on this planet who are as aware and intelligent or more so than humans, such as whales, dolphins, and birds, using complex ancient languages. Modern humans are largely distinguished not by intelligence or self-awareness, but by moral decay and by the speed with which they are wiping out all living creatures. The human insane philosophical understanding of individualistic superiority is what allows this extreme moral decline destroying everything. And this obsession with maintaining a viewpoint of individualistic superiority is reinforced by an inability to confront the evil acts of the self. It is very hard to expand ones awareness beyond 'self' when any expansion of awareness brings one up against confronting the effects of ones evil actions against other entities. It is much easier to say these other entities are inferior or unable to feel, thus providing justification to inflict pain, suffering, and destruction upon them.

and it never occurred to you that death was not final, and nothing of you went on

would you then agree that you, back then, existed the same as any mammal or plant in that you were born, lived, and died, and that was it.....end of story?

Technically I somewhat agree with what you are saying here. But that is only a partial level of understanding. You are describing the life cycle of what we call a living body. You are overlooking the creative energy and dedication of purpose that can inhabit a body. You can call it a soul or "A Strange Loop", or any other word or symbol that suits your purpose.

This sense of creative energy and dedication of purpose has driven me through a whole series of 'lifetimes' that i can remember with considerable clarity.

if you can imagine that, then would you consider that it is only human "arrogance", hubris, or really strong wishful thinking, that is behind the very concept of a soul?

Yes, I agree with you on this, particularly the strong wishful thinking part.

You see, this 'wishful thinking' part, or better termed 'purposeful creative energy' is what drives the universe into creation and action!

I don't know a more polite way of responding than to say that your level of reasoning is technically correct, but your level of awareness and understanding leaves room for additional learning...

As is true for all of us...

WBraun

climber
Feb 19, 2013 - 03:14pm PT
soul = will, emotions, intellect

No

The soul is the actual life force of the individual living entity.

In other words it is the actual individual living entity itself.

The soul is not a man made idea, word or any such material invented fabrication in the fertile minds of mental speculators.

It's not a theory but actual scientific fact.

The soul is a spiritual atom smaller than the material atoms.

This is why the modern material scientists can not see the soul for it is out of the range of their material instruments.

Not everything can be seen by matter alone.

No religion is required to understand the nature of the spiritual soul.

The symptom of the souls is consciousness spread all over the body.

Every living entity is an individual soul covered by the material body as its dress.

According to ones developed consciousness an appropriate body is given.

The soul is permanent and indestructible from all material elements and energies.

The soul in the human body resides in the heart.

Medical science, accepts that the heart is the seat of all energies of the body
Norton

Social climber
the Wastelands
Feb 19, 2013 - 03:15pm PT
Tom said
It's that I believe that all the universe is alive and possesses a sense of purpose.

interesting comment

can you elaborate?

to me the word purpose kind of assumes a controlling force behind an action or creation

are you suggesting that the universe has such?

and that it cannot just "be" whatever it is, without ?
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 03:49pm PT
"It's that I believe that all the universe is alive and possesses a sense of purpose."

interesting comment

can you elaborate?

to me the word purpose kind of assumes a controlling force behind an action or creation

are you suggesting that the universe has such?

and that it cannot just "be" whatever it is, without ?

Yes, I think the 'spiritual universe' can just be and doesn't need to do anything.

However this 'spiritual universe' can 'dream' or 'dream things up', as in creative thought.

In this sense the 'dream' or 'things-dreamed-up' is the physical universe, sort of a play ground for creative thought potential.

The idea that there must be a 'someone' doing this is the basis for the concept of 'God'.

To state that the entire physical universe is 'alive' is a reference to 'the-spirit-that-moves-though-all-things'; or the pervasive field of creative thought that we perceive as the physical universe.

I don't think it is quite correct to think of a controlling force behind creation.

I think of it more as a 'primordial soup' of creative thought potential

In this sense I find it rather amusing and not inconsistent that I can both believe in Darwin and 'creationism'.

i have tried to address this in several ways before:

Feb 18, 2013 - 01:01am PT
the 'physical universe' is an invention of the 'spiritual universe' (or whatever you may choose to call awareness or source energy)

the observed local integrity of the 'physical universe' is dependent upon local agreements

these local agreements are locked in place by very sophisticated encryption at the level of thought particles moving in high-speed complex patterns to form molecules, and thus maintain the integrity of 'masses' in the 'physical universe'

(sub-atomic particles are thoughts...a bit like lego blocks)

these encryption patterns are designed in such a way that only an unencumbered awareness can pass through them to non-distructably influence the physical molecule

any mental encumbrance will block passing awareness through the encryption patterns

The above is based upon my personal observations rather than any work I have done for NASA or DOE or other research organizations. I know just enough of a physics to embarrass myself, so my descriptions are based upon direct observations rather than a technical understanding of what I perceive.

If you can accept the idea that 'something' or as JL prefers 'nothingness' creates the universe, then the first level of creation is through particles that we call sub-atomic particles. I observe that these are thought particles that can be directly influenced if you wish by another thought.

The next step in this thought creating is to establish persistence of particles. This is done by heavy thought particles (a molecular nucleus) trapped inside a rapid swarm of lighter particles trapped in orbital electron shells.

I have worked with electron microscopes to photograph individual molecules, specifically DNA. However those are static shots of heavily manipulated material. My observations here are based upon viewing molecules directly with inner vision.

(It's not all that much of a stretch when you realize that astronauts on Station regularly see cosmic rays as streaks in the dark with their eyes closed.)

The interlocking patterns of electron shells create a rapidly moving matrix that makes it impossible for an encumbered awareness to penetrate the maze and effect the thoughts holding together the molecular nucleus.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Feb 19, 2013 - 03:53pm PT
. . . since we get quizzed so much on the material universe, this isn't a discussion until somebody explains the following:

1) Spirit

2) Spiritual

3) Spiritual Universe


I'm thinking you're think that "explaining" 1-3 is an exercise much like explaining the physical universe, where words relate to quantafible people, places or things, in other words, to stuff we can know and to some extent, make clear (make "it" assume some recognizable or tangible form).

Is that what you're wanting for an answer? 1, a spirit, is this and that, with these properties, et al.

JL
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 03:53pm PT
Credit: TomCochrane
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Feb 19, 2013 - 04:08pm PT
since we have forgotten the origins of most of our cultural heritage going back millions of years, with a few moldy texts going back only 2000-5000 years, and all buried in a immense deluge of socially manipulated disinformation materials in the past 10-200 years...

Seriously? Those pesky master manipulators. They're just so damn busy up there in the office of social disinformation that no one would ever work for them if it weren't for all the perks. Of course it's somewhat better these days what with all the automation.

It is much easier to say these other entities are inferior or unable to feel, thus providing justification to inflict pain, suffering, and destruction upon them.

It is much easier to say these other entities lack a soul...

I'm beginning to think Rupert Sheldrake shouldn't feel quite so all alone.
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 04:15pm PT
It is much easier to say these other entities lack a soul...

Yes, that is the basic insanity of our society that provides justification for us to destroy everything we don't myopically understand, love, or appreciate.

Credit: TomCochrane

I'm beginning to think Rupert Sheldrake shouldn't feel quite so all alone.

He has a lot more company than would make you comfortable.
WBraun

climber
Feb 19, 2013 - 04:16pm PT
It is much easier to say these other entities lack a soul...


This what so called "Christians" say "other entities lack a soul".

This is their justification for maintaining industrial mechanized slaughterhouses.

But every living entity has consciousness and objects to being killed.

Still the rascals say animals have no soul. Such rascals.

You can see the fear in their eyes as they are being slaughtered.

This is the height of delusion and false projection of superiority over other living entities.

Rascals ....
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 04:18pm PT
Seriously? Those pesky master manipulators. They're just so damn busy up there in the office of social disinformation that no one would ever work for them if it weren't for all the perks. Of course it's somewhat better these days what with all the automation.

I wasn't specifically referencing your job title. You have plenty of competition from many directions, mostly well intentioned...
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Feb 19, 2013 - 04:26pm PT
I wasn't specifically referencing your job title.

Which title is that? I wasn't referencing yours either...

Yes, that is the basic insanity of our society that provides justification for us to destroy everything we don't myopically understand, love, or appreciate.

I'd say that - and 'social disinformation' - is largely over-thinking it. It's a simple matter of consumption and no different or more elaborate than swabbing a sterile culture medium in a petri dish with a bacterial strain - the results are eminently predictable.
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 04:39pm PT
Credit: TomCochrane
Dr. F.

Big Wall climber
SoCal
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 19, 2013 - 04:49pm PT
Tom
Thanks for the critique
Of course I say you are wrong in your impressions of me
I guess you missed my history, and when I was Dr. Guru F.
and would have agreed with 100%,
that was the 70s through the 90s

I evolved, and now have a solid relationship with Reality
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 05:06pm PT
Of course I say you are wrong in your impressions of me
I guess you missed my history, and when I was Dr. Guru F.
and would have agreed with 100%,
that was the 70s through the 90s

I evolved, and now have a solid relationship with Reality

Well, admittedly a bunch of text and pictures on a screen is sort of a Plato's cave for trying to understand someone. I did catch your Dr. Guru history. I am no guru, but I don't think having a 'solid relationship with Reality' is necessarily anything to be proud about in this barbaric society. I am all too familiar with that 'solid Reality', enough to know that we have much to learn and not so much to be proud about.
mechrist

Gym climber
South of Heaven
Feb 19, 2013 - 05:07pm PT
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Feb 19, 2013 - 05:09pm PT
Holy cow this is embarrassing. I mean, even just being on the same continent as Oklahoma is getting pretty embarrassing. You guys down under the 49th parallel must be just squirming with embarrassment huh? Why does Oklahoma let their pet dinosaurs set science curriculum anyway?


Insist That People Coexisted With Dinosaurs…and Get an A in Science Class!
—By Dana Liebelson| Tue Feb. 19, 2013 3:02 AM PST

In biology class, public school students can't generally argue that dinosaurs and people ran around Earth at the same time, at least not without risking a big fat F. But that could soon change for kids in Oklahoma: On Tuesday, the Oklahoma Common Education committee is expected to consider a House bill that would forbid teachers from penalizing students who turn in papers attempting to debunk almost universally accepted scientific theories such as biological evolution and anthropogenic (human-driven) climate change.

Gus Blackwell, the Republican state representative who introduced the bill, insists that his legislation has nothing to do with religion; it simply encourages scientific exploration. "I proposed this bill because there are teachers and students who may be afraid of going against what they see in their textbooks," says Blackwell, who previously spent 20 years working for the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma. "A student has the freedom to write a paper that points out that highly complex life may not be explained by chance mutations."

These bills are "a kind of code for people who are opposed to teaching climate change and evolution."
Stated another way, students could make untestable, faith-based claims in science classes without fear of receiving a poor mark.

HB 1674 is the latest in an ongoing series of "academic freedom" bills aimed at watering down the teaching of science on highly charged topics. Instead of requiring that teachers and textbooks include creationism—see the bill proposed by Missouri state Rep. Rick Brattin—HB 1674's crafters say it merely encourages teachers and students to question, as the bill puts it, the "scientific strengths and scientific weaknesses" of topics that "cause controversy," including "biological evolution, the chemical origins of life, global warming, and human cloning."

Eric Meikle, education project director at the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) in Oakland, California, says Oklahoma has proposed more anti-evolution legislation than any other state, introducing eight bills with academic freedom language since 2004. (None has passed.) "The problem with these bills is that they're so open-ended; it's a kind of code for people who are opposed to teaching climate change and evolution," Meikle says.

HB 1674 goes further than a companion bill under consideration in the state Senate by explicitly protecting students, teachers, and schools from being penalized for subscribing to alternative theories. It does, however, say that children may still be tested on widely accepted theories such as anthropogenic climate change. "Students can't say because I don't believe in this, I don't want to learn it," Blackwell says. "They have to learn it in order to look at the weaknesses."

"An extremely high percentage of scientists will tell you that evolution doesn't have scientific weaknesses," says the NCSE's Meikle. "If every teacher, parent, and school board can decide what to teach on their own, you're going to have chaos. You can't deluge kids with every theory that's ever been considered since the beginning of time."

TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 05:27pm PT
Is your red the same as my red?

i think his line of reasoning is very interesting, but strays into hubris with his conclusions

My Red:

Credit: TomCochrane


So just what ARE you thinking!?

[(3!)!]! > [(3 * 2)!]! > [6 * 5 * 4 * 3 * 2]! ==> 720! 720 * 719 * 718 * ... * 3 * 2 * 1 720 / 5 = 144 factors of 5 720 / 25 = 28 factors of 25 720 / 125 = 5 ...
Credit: TomCochrane
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 05:39pm PT
For thousands of years spiritual teachers have been talking about the realm of the spirit. How silly when any physicist can tell you it's really just the Higgs Field.

What a thought!

http://news.yahoo.com/higgs-boson-particle-may-spell-doom-universe-152236961.html


BOSTON — A subatomic particle discovered last year that may be the long-sought Higgs boson might doom our universe to an unfortunate end, researchers say.

The mass of the particle, which was uncovered at the world's largest particle accelerator — the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Geneva — is a key ingredient in a calculation that portends the future of space and time.

"This calculation tells you that many tens of billions of years from now there'll be a catastrophe," Joseph Lykken, a theoretical physicist at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Ill., said Monday (Feb. 18) here at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

"It may be the universe we live in is inherently unstable, and at some point billions of years from now it's all going to get wiped out," added Lykken, a collaborator on one of the LHC's experiments. [Gallery: Search for the Higgs Boson]

The Higgs boson particle is a manifestation of an energy field pervading the universe called the Higgs field, which is thought to explain why particles have mass. After searching for decades for proof that this field and particle existed, physicists at the LHC announced in July 2012 that they'd discovered a new particle whose properties strongly suggest it is the Higgs boson.

To confirm the particle's identity for sure, more data are needed. But many scientists say they're betting it's the Higgs.

"This discovery to me was personally astounding," said I. Joseph Kroll, a University of Pennsylvania physicist who also works at the LHC. "To me, the Higgs was sort of, it might be there, it might not. The fact that it's there is really a tremendous accomplishment."

And finding the Higgs, if it's truly been found, not only confirms the theory about how particles get mass, but it allows scientists to make new calculations that weren't possible before the particle's properties were known.

For example, the mass of the new particle is about 126 billion electron volts, or about 126 times the mass of the proton. If that particle really is the Higgs, its mass turns out to be just about what's needed to make the universe fundamentally unstable, in a way that would cause it to end catastrophically in the far future.

That's because the Higgs field is thought to be everywhere, so it affects the vacuum of empty space-time in the universe.

"The mass of the Higgs is related to how stable the vacuum is," explained Christopher Hill, a theoretical physicist at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory. "It's right along the critical line. That could either be a cosmic coincidence, or it could be that there's some physics that's causing that. That's something new, which we didn't know before."

Strikingly, if the Higgs mass were just a few percent different, the universe wouldn't be doomed, the scientists said.

But even if the universe is in for an unfortunate end, there is at least one reason for consolation.

"You won't actually see it, because it will come at you at the speed of light," Lykken said. "So in that sense don't worry."

Sea Pens and Blue Cod
Sea Pens and Blue Cod
Credit: TomCochrane
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Feb 19, 2013 - 05:55pm PT
Well, one of my 'titles' was filming and sound recording Humpback Whales for URI while working on establishing of the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary. I will proudly admit to being a disinformation specialist as part of my role in helping to get it established.
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 19, 2013 - 06:08pm PT
Well, one of my 'titles' was filming and sound recording Humpback Whales for URI while working on establishing of the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary.


very interesting!
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