Politics, God and Religion vs. Science

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WBraun

climber
Nov 26, 2013 - 09:24am PT
Why would you object?

Who's objecting? Not me. I'm 100% for science and always have an will.

It's the root of complete knowledge.

You completely misunderstood Jan.

She said "TYPE" she didn't say it was a religion per sec in complete.

Religion has to be based on science if not it's pure speculation.

Modern science rejects any science beyond the gross material senses .....
Jan

Mountain climber
Colorado, Nepal & Okinawa
Nov 26, 2013 - 09:26am PT
This leads me to the article recommended by FortMental on the measurement of intelligence which he purported to illustrate that the measurement of intelligence is now biometric and scientific. It's title was The Natural History of Ashkenazi Intelligence, the Ashkenazi being the Jews who settled in Germany and later Poland and Russia, as opposed to the Spanish and Middle Eastern Jews. While I have no problems believing that Ashkenazi at the present time are more intelligent on the average, and find the idea of measuring intelligence with studies of the physical brain and how it functions, to be intriguing, this article does not prove its case.

In fact, even a cursory inspection of the literature reveals that although there is a lively debate on the topic, there are two opposing factions on the subject - those who believe that certain hereditary diseases like Tay Sachs are connected to higher intelligence and others who think that the high number of genetic diseases the Ashkenazi are subject to, result from their small numbers and inbreeding over many centuries plus persecution. Their long history of persecution which resulted in many Jewish deaths over the centuries, including we presume, the less intelligent, and the Jewish elevation of education as a supreme value for both genders, would seem a more likely explanation than severely debilitating diseases.

An enlightening comparison along these lines would of course be the Amish who suffer an even higher rate of genetic abnormalities and share with the Ashkenazi a small founder population, but not their history of persecution or love of education. We can also look forward to seeing whether Ashkenazi become less intelligent over time now that genetic testing, contraception, and a desire to be rid of Tay Sachs, has almost completely eliminated it from the Ashkenazi gene pool. Somehow I doubt it.

Beyond that,the article contains many basic assumptions which have long since been discredited in discussions of intelligence and its measurement. In fact, there's hardly a sentence in that article that hasn't been the subject of controversy in the past. One example that leaped out at me was the attribution of intelligence in Ashkenazi to money lending and financial calculations. How stereotypical is that? It also speaks to gender bias since only the males were involved in those activities.

While it was fashionable for many years for male anthropologists to attribute the rapid evolution of human intelligence to male hunting behavior, it was eventually realized that intelligence is found in both genders, and therefore the issue must be more complicated. Attributing the intelligence found in both Jewish men and women to the efforts of the men alone is just more of this same outdated idea.

What is most remarkable however, in an article discussing causative factors, is the only passing reference to centuries of intense persecution. Perhaps the fact that the authors work for a Christian university had something to do with this? Likewise, it was never mentioned that the present day Ashkenazi are only a remnant of their original population, given six out of ten million of them were killed in the 1940's. The ones who survived are no more representative than the current day Native Americans are of the preColumbian Indian population. One would expect by the way, that those who survived the holocaust were on the average more intelligent or at least more canny than the majority.

In short, the study of intelligence, even when trying to create a positive image of the people studied and the study of intelligence in general, has once again been unable to avoid simple cultural pitfalls.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
U.N. Ambassador, Crackistan
Nov 26, 2013 - 09:26am PT
Werner, if by 'gross material senses' you include the electomagnetic spectrum then I agree with your post above, completely.

DMT
WBraun

climber
Nov 26, 2013 - 09:33am PT
Anything material.

When modern science gets near what can be acquired beyond the material senses they are shut down by the limitations of the material world.

Thus they can not measure that which is beyond the finite although every living entity knows the infinite is there .......
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
U.N. Ambassador, Crackistan
Nov 26, 2013 - 10:08am PT
If you can't measure the one you love honey
measure the one you're with
measure the one you're with

One of the cool properties of human intelligence is to make inference using incomplete knowledge. We all do it; scientist, layperson, preacherman, pauper. We take bits and pieces and presto quicko don't take your eye off my hand magic, the brain manufactures reality and our minds form picture or make a conclusion.

A bit of movement, a hint of color, a tense sensation, perhaps the wisp of a smell... OH! Its a tiger in the elephant grass!

Or its God in the Waves!

Or its 'oh light must have special properties!@'

Our minds do what they must - assemble pictures of reality based on incomplete knowledge.

Don't fault us for what we MUST DO. Its how our brains are wired. Now me? I'm not convinced your ancient 10,000 year old astral travelers weren't just some filthy dirt baggers high on peyote and looking for a handout from gullible passers by. In fact I'm fairly convinced the latter is closer to reality. But your free to help me paint a different picture!

Cheers
DMT

Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Nov 26, 2013 - 10:31am PT
Cintune's article is simply another rant by a fundamntal physicalist. Nothing new. And I agree with the bulk of it.

Where the author ruins his own game is in engaging the long-standing effort to provide an observer (he calls it a detector etc.) that lies outside of consciousness - like the absolute clock that lies outside of physical reality.

All of these folk try and root out the observer and consciousness by way of a brute physicality they believe "creates" sentience. What's more, and probably more numb-skulled, is the conviction that any view but their own is a "God of he gaps" kind of wuwu bunch of gibberish. This is called intellectual narcissism and psychologically is the same as a religious nut claiming exclusive on the truth, everyone else being deluded.

The poor guy sounds sane enough and the data adds up in a superficial way but in terms of being a conscious person, he's operating almost entirely in what Jung called "the shadow," and has placed virtue on being there.

He said:

"I have pretty much stopped trying to convince people they should try zen practice because most people think if their life situation changed their "problems would be solved." Or else "that does not sound like fun to me."

In both cases (which are true to a remarkable degree IME), note that "most people" speculates and forms opinions BEFORE conducting the experiment (bad science by any definition), which can only be undertaken by way of direct experience, seemign that zen is experiential, not a merely cognitive drill. And trying to convince someone to do more than the cognitive drill only exposes fear and (fill in the blank). A waste of time for sure.

JL

JL
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Nov 26, 2013 - 10:34am PT
MH2

climber
Nov 26, 2013 - 10:55am PT
note that "most people" speculates and forms opinions BEFORE conducting the experiment (bad science by any definition), which can only be undertaken by way of direct experience, seemign that zen is experiential, not a merely cognitive drill.


This is called intellectual narcissism and psychologically is the same as a religious nut claiming exclusive on the truth, everyone else being deluded.



Heed your own words.
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Nov 26, 2013 - 11:41am PT
The poor guy sounds sane enough and the data adds up in a superficial way but in terms of being a conscious person, he's operating almost entirely in what Jung called "the shadow," and has placed virtue on being there.

He said:

"I have pretty much stopped trying to convince people they should try zen practice because most people think if their life situation changed their "problems would be solved." Or else "that does not sound like fun to me."

This quote is by PSP.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Nov 26, 2013 - 12:08pm PT
My comments were about two different things. The first addressed that fundamentalist in the Cintune article.

The second was per the guy who commented on the uselessness of trying to get people to look at another perspective - in this case, the Zen perspective. All we get is a raft of reasons to conserve the status quo. My surprise is that this attitude would be so prominent on climber's web site, rumored to feature folks who enjoy the unknown and new challenges.

Oh well . . .

JL
cintune

climber
The Utility Muffin Research Kitchen
Nov 26, 2013 - 12:18pm PT
FortMentšl

Social climber
Albuquerque, NM
Nov 26, 2013 - 12:55pm PT
What is most remarkable however, in an article discussing causative factors, is the only passing reference to centuries of intense persecution. Perhaps the fact that the authors work for a Christian university had something to do with this? Likewise, it was never mentioned that the present day Ashkenazi are only a remnant of their original population, given six out of ten million of them were killed in the 1940's.

The scientific article's not about the political reasons behind the biology. There may be valid statistical or biological criticisms of the article; I'm no expert in either of those fields, but I'm not going to dismiss the article on geological terms, simply because that's where my expertise lies. Seems that you're the one who's fallen into the "cultural pitfall" by attaching (irrelevant) cultural notions to what is basically an analysis of a potentially genetically heritable trait. By your reckoning, female scientists have no business studying male-pattern baldness.

edit: More grist for the mill.

Childhood intelligence is heritable, highly polygenic and associated with FNBP1L

Intelligence in childhood, as measured by psychometric cognitive tests, is a strong predictor of many important life outcomes, including educational attainment, income, health and lifespan. Results from twin, family and adoption studies are consistent with general intelligence being highly heritable and genetically stable throughout the life course. No robustly associated genetic loci or variants for childhood intelligence have been reported. Here, we report the first genome-wide association study (GWAS) on childhood intelligence (age range 6-18 years) from 17 989 individuals in six discovery and three replication samples. Although no individual single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were detected with genome-wide significance, we show that the aggregate effects of common SNPs explain 22-46% of phenotypic variation in childhood intelligence in the three largest cohorts (P=3.9 ◊ 10(-15), 0.014 and 0.028). FNBP1L, previously reported to be the most significantly associated gene for adult intelligence, was also significantly associated with childhood intelligence (P=0.003). Polygenic prediction analyses resulted in a significant correlation between predictor and outcome in all replication cohorts. The proportion of childhood intelligence explained by the predictor reached 1.2% (P=6 ◊ 10(-5)), 3.5% (P=10(-3)) and 0.5% (P=6 ◊ 10(-5)) in three independent validation cohorts. Given the sample sizes, these genetic prediction results are consistent with expectations if the genetic architecture of childhood intelligence is like that of body mass index or height. Our study provides molecular support for the heritability and polygenic nature of childhood intelligence. Larger sample sizes will be required to detect individual variants with genome-wide significance.Molecular Psychiatry advance online publication, 29 January 2013; doi:10.1038/mp.2012.184.

I won't pretend to understand the statistical analysis that goes into such a study. But if we have no problem understanding the genetic link to depression, schizophrenia, Tay-Sachs, and other brain illnesses, then we shouldn't have any problem using the same tools for understanding other properties of the brain, even the ones we like to call "normal".
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Nov 26, 2013 - 01:09pm PT
All we get is a raft of reasons to conserve the status quo. My surprise is that this attitude would be so prominent on climber's web site, rumored to feature folks who enjoy the unknown and new challenges. (JL)


Some of us are long in tooth and short in memory.



;>)
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Nov 26, 2013 - 01:12pm PT
Third, Bohr flatly denied the ontological thesis that the subject has any direct impact on the outcome of a measurement. Hence, when he occasionally mentioned the subjective character of quantum phenomena and the difficulties of distinguishing the object from the subject in quantum mechanics, he did not think of it as a problem confined to the observation of atoms alone. For instance, he stated that already "the theory of relativity reminds us of the subjective character of all physical phenomena" (ATDN, p. 116). Rather, by referring to the subjective character of quantum phenomena he was expressing the epistemological thesis that all observations in physics are in fact context-dependent. There exists, according to Bohr, no view from nowhere in virtue of which quantum objects can be described.

--

Just sent to me by a friend with the invititation to "get jiggy with this shizzle."
moosedrool

climber
Stair climber, lost, far away from Poland
Nov 26, 2013 - 01:33pm PT
Quantum delocalization inspires a view of the world made not so much of material as of information. This idea may be extended to space and time as well as matter. Some properties of space and time that seem fundamental, including localization, may actually emerge only as a macroscopic approximation, from the flow of information in a quantum system.

According to Craig Hogan.

One word: matrix!
cintune

climber
The Utility Muffin Research Kitchen
Nov 26, 2013 - 01:59pm PT
The social dynamics of monkey and ape groups seem to be more complex and nuanced than those of lemur groups, and this social complexity might drive the evolution of sophisticated abilities like perspective-taking.



http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2013/11/lemurs-take-advantage-of-what-others-see-but-not-hear/
moosedrool

climber
Stair climber, lost, far away from Poland
Nov 26, 2013 - 02:08pm PT
Agree, cintune, we are closer to lemurs than monkeys ;/
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Nov 26, 2013 - 02:21pm PT
Craig Hogan believes that the world is fuzzy. This is not a metaphor. Hogan, a physicist at the University of Chicago and director of the Fermilab Particle Astrophysics Center near Batavia, Ill., thinks that if we were to peer down at the tiniest subdivisions of space and time, we would find a universe filled with an intrinsic jitter, the busy hum of static. This hum comes not from particles bouncing in and out of being or other kinds of quantum froth that physicists have argued about in the past. Rather Hoganís noise would come about if space was not, as we have long assumed, smooth and continuous, a glassy backdrop to the dance of fields and particles. Hoganís noise arises if space is made of chunks. Blocks. Bits. Hoganís noise would imply that the universe is digital.


Interesting to see, as my science friends point out, how people continue to try and posit empty space, of void (no-thing) with various properties (things, aspects, measurable quantities, etc.), not realizing that said things or aspects - digital or otherwise - occur within no-thing. My friend accuse these folks of "trying to do math without the zeros."

Nature, and our discursive minds, hate a vacuum. We have to fill it with "chunks."

JL
cintune

climber
The Utility Muffin Research Kitchen
Nov 26, 2013 - 02:59pm PT
So no thing is the ultimate backdrop in an endless hall of mirrors? And as soon as anyone says anything about it, they're by definition no longer talking about it?
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Nov 26, 2013 - 03:27pm PT
. . . not realizing that said things or aspects - digital or otherwise - occur within no-thing (JL)

Who IS that man behind the curtain?
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