Politics, God and Religion vs. Science

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WBraun

climber
Jan 30, 2014 - 06:03pm PT
Dr. Failed -- "Science is meant to tell what our life is about"

Failed again!!!!

Modern science has no clue what "Life" is!

Modern science is the true mental speculator .........
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jan 30, 2014 - 06:54pm PT
Excellent. I already found it. No problem to be solved.


As I said, not everyone hears the call to sit quietly and drop beneath thought into being, as in human being, and to stay there till things finally start to shift. The experiential path is not for everyone, just as climbing and engineering are not for everyone.

However I would be interested in hearing what Dingus "found." Especially the illusive "it." What might that be? And where did Dingus get the idea that quieting down is prompted by a problem, or that doing so will solve it. Notice how his mind goes to a math model (problem/equation, soultion/answer) every time. This is the essential trap of the discursive - it is a one trick pony (invaluable as it is). Stepping outside of that renders another perspective - of that you may be sure.

JL
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
U.N. Ambassador, Crackistan
Jan 30, 2014 - 06:59pm PT
and drop beneath thought into being, as in human being, and to stay there till things finally start to shift.

Drop beneath thought into being... And you wonder why I call it woo woo?

DMT
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Jan 30, 2014 - 07:00pm PT
It's fine for you to hold onto a firm grasp of reality within your comfort zone. Most people need some of that.

And you don't have to bother looking at anything that doesn't fit within your comfort zone and perception of reality.

Just don't try to claim that your perception of reality explains the full scope of everyone's awareness, and certainly not the infinite scope of the universe that is well beyond any of our current explorations.

And so it is not fine for you to constantly criticize and ridicule people who are exploring phenomena that lay outside of your comfort zone.

The current generation of young climbers are exceeding my wildest dreams from when I was a young and crazy climber.

Just so the truth of reality is probably well beyond anything currently being explored by even our best scientists and visionaries

Edit: I'll try to make it simple for you with this technical explanation:

A Woo Woo is an alcoholic beverage made of vodka, peach schnapps, and cranberry juice. It is typically served as a cocktail in a highball glass or can be served as a shot. It is also sometimes served in a rocks glass. The ingredients are usually shaken together with ice or stirred as preferred. ...
moosedrool

climber
Stair climber, lost, far away from Poland
Jan 30, 2014 - 07:18pm PT
Modern science has no clue what "Life" is!

What's up Duck?

In case you missed the biology class ;)

Life as we know it has only one purpose, to replicate DNA or RNA, the genetic code.

The simplest entity that contain a genetic code is a virus. It cannot replicate by itself, but when it gets into a right cell, its genetic code gets replicated by that cell. Is it life? No, because the virus cannot replicate on it's own. A little bit more complicated entity is bacterium. It can replicate without highjacking other cells. That's life in its simplest form.

If you look at even more complicated organisms, you see how they evolved to maximize their chances to replicate in a given environment. At some point consciousness arose. Apes, dolphins, even birds have been shown to be self conscious. We, humans (especially Americans, lol) are not special, just more complicated. Life is no mystery, consciousness is (at the moment). Consciousness is a byproduct of the brain, though. In 10-20 years computers will gain consciousness, little doubt.

End

Andrzej
go-B

climber
1 Corinthians 8:6
Jan 30, 2014 - 07:29pm PT
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jan 30, 2014 - 07:34pm PT
Drop beneath thought into being... And you wonder why I call it woo woo?


Do you understand what I was saying? What do you think I mean by: Drop below thought into being? Do you believe doing so is a magic trick? Do you believe this is some hot tub fluff I'm making up or imagining? If you don't actually understand what is being said, what is your evaluation based on? If I have this wrong, what do you think I mean by "being," as in "human being."

My sense of this is that anything you do not understand (have not experienced), you by default label it "woo woo," without bothering to explain what the hell you mean. If I am totally wrong here, and in fact you have considerable experience with non-verbal being experiences, what about those prompted you to label them "woo woo," and what is implied by this term. I still have no idea what you mean and you haven't stated what you mean in any meaningful way. Or yo can do what M2 does and simply deflect a question by asking another.

I would bet a dollar that Dingus has no idea whatsoever per what lies beneath/before thought, and rather than say so, he rants that whatever it is, it must be voodoo or woo woo.

In this sense, woo woo = "I don't understand."

And yet Dingus himself already said he "got it."

Got what?

And Mooselips, we do not live a "biological life" where DNA replication holds sway, but rather a first-person experiential life where experience is king. From that perspective, what is the meaning of your life? A default answer about objective (biological) functioning is in fact to tango away from the question altogether - we can easily see why.

JL
MH2

climber
Jan 30, 2014 - 08:26pm PT
Tango delta nooner. I love tango. I do not care about this thing called meaning.
cintune

climber
The Utility Muffin Research Kitchen
Jan 30, 2014 - 08:37pm PT
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Jan 30, 2014 - 08:42pm PT
Deepak Chopra:

It used to annoy me to be called the king of woo woo. For those who aren't familiar with the term, "woo woo" is a derogatory reference to almost any form of unconventional thinking, aimed by professional skeptics who are self-appointed vigilantes dedicated to the suppression of curiosity. I get labeled much worse things as regularly as clockwork whenever I disagree with big fry like Richard Dawkins or smaller fry like Michael Shermer, the Scientific American columnist and editor of Skeptic magazine. The latest barrage of name-calling occurred after the two of us had a spirited exchange on Larry King Live last week. . Maybe you saw it. I was the one rolling my eyes as Shermer spoke. Sorry about that, a spontaneous reflex of the involuntary nervous system.

Afterwards, however, I had an unpredictable reaction. I realized that I would much rather expound woo woo than the kind of bad science Shermer stands behind. He has made skepticism his personal brand, more or less, sitting by the side of the road to denigrate "those people who believe in spirituality, ghosts, and so on," as he says on a YouTube video. No matter that this broad brush would tar not just the Pope, Mahatma Gandhi, St. Teresa of Avila, Buddha, and countless scientists who happen to recognize a reality that transcends space and time. All are deemed irrational by the skeptical crowd. You would think that skeptics as a class have made significant contributions to science or the quality of life in their own right. Uh oh. No, they haven't. Their principal job is to reinforce the great ideas of yesterday while suppressing the great ideas of tomorrow.

Let me clear the slate with Shermer and forget the several times he has wiggled out of a public debate he was supposedly eager to have with me. I will ignore his recent blog in which his rebuttal of my position was relegated to a long letter from someone who obviously didn't possess English as a first language (would Shermer like to write a defense of his position in Hindi? It would read just as ludicrously if Hindi isn't his first language).

With the slate clear, I'd like to see if Shermer will accept the offer to debate me at length on such profound questions as the following:

• Is there evidence for creativity and intelligence in the cosmos?
• What is consciousness?
• Do we have a core identity beyond our biology, mind, and ego?
• Is there life after death? Does this identity outlive the molecules through which it expresses itself?

The rules will be simple. He can argue from any basis he chooses, and I will confine myself entirely to science. For we have reached the state where Shermer's tired, out-of-date, utterly mediocre science is far in arrears of the best, most open scientific thinkers -- actually, we reached that point 60 years ago when eminent physicists like Einstein, Wolfgang Pauli, Werner Heisenberg and Erwin Schrodinger applied quantum theory to deep spiritual questions. The arrogance of skeptics is both high-handed and rusty. It is high-handed because they lump brilliant speculative thinkers into one black box known as woo woo. It is rusty because Shermer doesn't even bother to keep up with the latest findings in neuroscience, medicine, genetics, physics, and evolutionary biology. All of these fields have opened fascinating new ground for speculation and imagination. But the king of pooh-pooh is too busy chasing down imaginary woo woo.

Skeptics feel that they have won the high ground in matters concerning consciousness, mind, the origins of life, evolutionary theory, and brain science. This is far from the case. What they cling to is 19th Century materialism, packaged with a screeching hysteria about God and religion that is so passé it has become quaint. To suggest that Darwinian theory is incomplete and full of unproven hypotheses causes Shermer, who takes Darwin as purely as a fundamentalist takes scripture, to see God everywhere in the enemy camp.

How silly. Shermer is a former Christian fundamentalist who is now a fundamentalist about materialism; fundamentalists must have an absolute to believe in. Thus he forces himself into a corner, declaring that all spirituality is bogus, that the sense of self is an illusion, that the soul is ipso facto a fraud, that mind has no existence except in the brain, that intelligence emerged only when evolution, guided by random mutations, developed the cerebral cortex, that nothing invisible can be real compared to solid objects, and that any thought which ventures beyond the five senses for evidence must be dismissed without question.

I won't go into detail about the absurdity of such rigid thinking. However, the impulse behind dogmatic materialism seems intended to flatten one's opponents so thoroughly that through scorn and arrogance they must admit defeat, conceding that science is the complete refutation of all preceding religion, spirituality, psychology, myth, and philosophy -- in other words, any mode of gaining knowledge that arch materialism doesn't countenance.

I've baited this post with a few barbs to see if Shermer can be goaded into an actual public debate. I have avoided his and his followers' underhanded methods, whereby an opponent is attacked ad hominem as an idiot, moron, and other choice epithets that in his world are the mainstays of rational argument. And the point of such a debate? To further public knowledge about the actual frontiers of science, which has always depended on wonder, awe, imagination, and speculation. Petty science of the Shermer brand scorns such things, but the greatest discoveries have been anchored on them.

If you are tempted to think that I have taken the weaker side and that materialism long ago won this debate, let me end with a piece of utterly nonsensical woo woo:

Nobody understands how decisions are made or how imagination is set free. What consciousness consists of, or how it should be defined, is equally puzzling. Despite the marvelous success of neuroscience in the past century, we seem as far from understanding cognitive processes as we were a century ago.



That isn't a quote from "one of those people who believe in spirituality, ghosts, and so on." It's from Sir John Maddox, former editor-in-chief of the renowned scientific journal Nature, writing in 1999. I can't wait for Shermer to call him an idiot and a moron. Don't worry, he won't. He'll find an artful way of slithering to higher ground where all the other skeptics are huddled.

P. S. In light of a few of the comments I would like to clarify something. I hold great value and trust in the scientific method when practiced honestly. Also, I have nothing against healthy skepticism which retains an open mind to future possibilities in science. What I am really addressing here is the brand of professional skepticism that Shermer stands for that borders on cynicism and which leads to a rigid attachment to materialist science. It is the cynicism and prejudice that refuses to explore the new frontiers of neuroscience, genomics, epigenetics, information theory and the understanding of consciousness that I am speaking to.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/deepak-chopra/woo-woo-is-a-step-ahead-o_b_404311.html
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Jan 30, 2014 - 10:05pm PT

What do you think I mean by: drop below thought into being? (JL)


"Some philosophers deny that the concept of "being" has any meaning at all, since we only define an object's existence by its relation to other objects, and actions it undertakes. The term "I am" has no meaning by itself; it must have an action or relation appended to it. This in turn has led to the thought that "being" and nothingness are closely related, developed in existential philosophy" (Wiki)

There you have it.
WBraun

climber
Jan 30, 2014 - 10:07pm PT
"Life as we know it has only one purpose, to replicate DNA or RNA, the genetic code."

DNA and RNA is not life !!!

Biology is not life!

You must learn what "Life" really is.

It's definitely not what you think it is.

Largo made some important comments about the source of life many times here also ......
moosedrool

climber
Stair climber, lost, far away from Poland
Jan 30, 2014 - 10:32pm PT
WBraun, maybe we have different definitions of life.

For me, a bacterium is a form of life. Is it for you?

Andrzej
WBraun

climber
Jan 30, 2014 - 10:43pm PT
Biology is not the source of "Life"

The source of "life" is what makes life.

Modern science does not know the source of life!

They have no clue yet ......
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jan 30, 2014 - 10:48pm PT
"Some philosophers deny that the concept of "being" has any meaning at all, since we only define an object's existence by its relation to other objects, and actions it undertakes. The term "I am" has no meaning by itself; it must have an action or relation appended to it. This in turn has led to the thought that "being" and nothingness are closely related, developed in existential philosophy" (Wiki)


These philosophers all come from the discursive school, the terrain of my graduate work. Seen from these perspectives, "meaning" refers to material markers by which a person, place or thing can be described and it's actions predicted or at least postulated. Put differently, meaning cannot be ascribed to a process, or a moving target like experience lest the meaning becomes so fluid as to be meaningless.

From the experiential standpoint, which remains our fundamental reality, "being" refers to the brute fact that we are present here and now, and that fact is the central component of sentience. So investigating this being - which is the starting point for everything any human ever does, has done or ever will do - is not a matter of objectifying a logical or discursive "meaning," it is, rather, an ongoing conscious investigation as to what this being, presence, sentience, actually IS.

Without the experiential explorations, "being" and "nothingness" are merely mental constructs derived from sensual realities. Discovering what these are in experiential terms is not something that we can reason our way into, since reasoning is by definition a process of objectifying, and a subject can never objectify themselves or their experience save for cutting it into bits.


JL
moosedrool

climber
Stair climber, lost, far away from Poland
Jan 30, 2014 - 11:03pm PT
You don't want to answer, WBraun.

If you answered that a bacterium is alive, than when an artificial bacterium is made in a lab, you would have to admit that we are able to create life.

If you answered that a bacterium is not alive, you would have to identify which organism is alive accordion to your criteria. And I would ask why did you choose it.

Are you afraid to lose your philosophy of life?

Don't be a chicken, Duck!

Andrzej
WBraun

climber
Jan 30, 2014 - 11:07pm PT
The "source" of life!!!!!

Not what's alive is the problem you are having.

You do not know where from the source comes from ......
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Jan 30, 2014 - 11:18pm PT
And now for something exactly the same....

moosedrool

climber
Stair climber, lost, far away from Poland
Jan 30, 2014 - 11:23pm PT
You do not know where from the source comes from .....

But I think I do. In a few years a bacterium will be made in a lab by some technician, not God, or spirit. It will be subjected to a series of accelerated mutations to create a different organism. A new life will be born from a dozen of common chemicals.

A 100 years ago we didn't know what DNA was. Just several years ago DNA synthesis was state of the art. Now it is as common as making cookies.

Synthetic life is coming soon!

Just watch.

Andrzej
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Jan 30, 2014 - 11:24pm PT

. . . lest the meaning becomes so fluid as to be meaningless (JL)



You see? That's why I love this thread.


;>)
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