The New "Religion Vs Science" Thread

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sycorax

Boulder climber
Yoknapatawpha County
Jan 1, 2017 - 05:17pm PT
I beg to differ that nature is the the backbone of the Romantic movement, Paul. At least as far as writers from that era are concerned (Wordsworth, Keats, Shelley, Byron, Coleridge). One of them, in fact, was appalled by the Lake District, preferring London streets. Imagination inspiration, the individual and sublimity compose the backbone of the movement. The French Revolution proved its catalyst.
Mark Force

Trad climber
Ashland, Oregon
Jan 1, 2017 - 05:33pm PT
Jan, Thanks for the link to Houston!

Paul, Is that a long-winded way of saying that figurative writing or storytelling can present apparently valid wisdom and/or truths about human nature and behavior?
paul roehl

Boulder climber
california
Jan 1, 2017 - 06:49pm PT
I beg to differ that nature is the the backbone of the Romantic movement

Not nature but the worship of nature, nature as a replacement for traditional religious thought which was discredited in the Enlightenment and is manifested in the writing of Rousseau (the virtue of natural man).

In both literature and the visual arts (including the English Garden) the beauty and sublimity of nature become a reconciliation to existence. By the 1830s and the advent of Realism of course this begins to change.

Suffer my genial spirits to decay:
For thou art with me, here, upon the banks
Of this fair river; thou, my dearest Friend,
My dear, dear Friend, and in thy voice I catch
The language of my former heart, and read
My former pleasures in the shooting lights
Of thy wild eyes. Oh! yet a little while 120
May I behold in thee what I was once,
__My dear, dear Sister! And this prayer I make,
Knowing that Nature never did betray
The heart that loved her; 'tis her privilege,
Through all the years of this our life, to lead
From joy to joy:__ for she can so inform
The mind that is within us, so impress
With quietness and beauty, and so feed
With lofty thoughts,** that neither evil tongues,
Rash judgments, nor the sneers of selfish men, 130
Nor greetings where no kindness is, nor all
The dreary intercourse of daily life,
Shall e'er prevail against us, or disturb
Our chearful faith that all which we behold
Is full of blessings. Therefore let the moon
Shine on thee in thy solitary walk;
And let the misty mountain winds be free

Not since St. Francis had attitudes toward nature changed so dramatically as they did in the Enlightenment and the birth of Romanticism.

Paul, Is that a long-winded way of saying that figurative writing or storytelling can present apparently valid wisdom and/or truths about human nature and behavior?

No. It's demonstrating that the meaning behind figurative writing can be described, explicated in a literal sense and should be read and understood with that in mind.
Mark Force

Trad climber
Ashland, Oregon
Jan 1, 2017 - 07:01pm PT
Can you provide an example?
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
Jan 2, 2017 - 01:23pm PT
Derek Parfit (1942 -2017)

http://dailynous.com/2017/01/02/derek-parfit-1942-2017/



"He believes that there is nothing more urgent for him to do in his brief time on earth than discover what these truths are and persuade others of their reality."

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2011/09/05/how-to-be-good

"Norman’s loss of faith was a catastrophe. Without God, his life had no meaning. He sank into a chronic depression that lasted until his death."
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
Jan 2, 2017 - 01:53pm PT
2017: What scientific term or concept ought to be more widely known?

From Jerry Coyne: Determinism.

"A concept that everyone should understand and appreciate is the idea of physical determinism: that all matter and energy in the universe, including what’s in our brain, obey the laws of physics. The most important implication is that is we have no “free will”: At a given moment, all living creatures, including ourselves, are constrained by their genes and environment to behave in only one way—and could not have behaved differently. We feel like we make choices, but we don’t. In that sense, “dualistic” free will is an illusion."

The armed robber had no choice about whether to get a gun and pull the trigger.

oh jerry!

https://www.edge.org/response-detail/27067

....

And if we didn't have L. Krauss we'd have to invent him...

"In science, we don’t "believe" in things..."

https://www.edge.org/response-detail/27085
Ward Trotter

Trad climber
Jan 2, 2017 - 03:02pm PT
Not since St. Francis had attitudes toward nature changed so dramatically as they did in the Enlightenment and the birth of Romanticism.

I'll have to agree with the Sycorax on this one. I've never been convinced that the so-called nature worship championed by the leading figures of Romanticism were very sincere, or convincingly ingenuous; certainly not Rousseau, who used his "natural man" mythos as a central feature of his con game directed at the various parlor societies who inexplicably hovered on his every word. The same for Byron and most of the rest. Shelley and Rousseau were both abominable characters who routinely abused and carelessly exploited the hapless unfortunates within their haloed orbits -- and, like Marx and others, such as Tolstoy ,must also be judged on that biographical data over and above their gratuitous philosophical blandishments and flowery phrases.

This is not to say that western societies at the time of the Enlightenment had not organically arrived at a stage of new inquiry and discovery of nature. This is a tide that started its rise during the Renaissance, having had its origins in Greece and Rome. Once the Medieval chains had been struck from the European mind they were tentatively free to jump the reservation. Nature was the only thing around which seemed to beg for discovery and clarification. Early science began its quest anew and philosophy followed in its trail. In the most general way the real champions of this new attitude towards nature were da Vinci, Galileo , Newton, and later Einstein.

paul roehl

Boulder climber
california
Jan 2, 2017 - 04:57pm PT
I'll have to agree with the Sycorax on this one.
Be my guest…But:

Romanticism as a movement manifests itself in a variety of ways. Chief among them is an unbridled affection for nature as demonstrated in in the poetry of Wordsworth, Keats, the painting of Constable and Turner the Barbizon School in France, the work of Friederich in Germany, the whole of the Hudson River School in America… eventually producing artists like Keith and Inness (Swedenborgians both) and what was a kind of purely religious painting disguised as landscape.

By contrast the Renaissance, much like classical antiquity, was enamored with nature only to the degree one could impose their will on it. The authority of nature was always subordinated to the ordered idealism of Neo-Platonic thought, as when the classicism of the Renaissance produces the French and Italian garden in which the human imposition of order demonstrated the absolute authority of the mind over nature as a direct reflection of God’s order. In fact, what produces the best art in both the tradition of High Classical Greece as well as the High Renaissance is the tension between naturalism and the conceptual ideal.

By contrast the Romantic English garden, “a path without a plan,” gives nature the appearance of itself as an authority in and of itself. The authority of nature in Romantic thought is ubiquitous both in the sense of the bucolic and the sublime.

Leonardo (and, yes, he was from Vinci) was an anomaly in his approach, and his rocky landscapes were, to say the least, unusual in Italian Renaissance painting as were his “scientific interests” demonstrated in the sketch books.

The secularism that emanates from the enlightenment discredits religion in the late 18th c. especially in England, and the terrible vacuum created is filled with a new found admiration of nature as a source of reconciliation to being.

In a secular nature, a nature without the traditional God, humanity found a powerful, mysterious, hidden divinity. Of course the notion of the Romantic sensibility still lingers today. When one wanders into the mountain wilderness we wander into our own personal church and perhaps the messiah of that church is Darwin and the sacrament is recycling. But I have little doubt that that Romantic sensibility follows us.

The Romantic period saw nature not so much as something to be explored as it did something to be pondered as beautiful, sublime and finally, and most importantly, as a source of reconciliation.
Jan

Mountain climber
Colorado & Nepal
Jan 2, 2017 - 05:57pm PT
Credit: Jan


Courtesy of Anastasia on her Facebook Page.
Mark Force

Trad climber
Ashland, Oregon
Jan 2, 2017 - 06:17pm PT
OMG, that's brilliant!
sycorax

Boulder climber
Yoknapatawpha County
Jan 2, 2017 - 07:11pm PT
Here's a three part BBC documentary concerning Romanticism in terms of literature: Liberty, Eternity and Nature.



Mark Force

Trad climber
Ashland, Oregon
Jan 2, 2017 - 09:27pm PT
A Scientist’s Defense of Free Will
http://www.creativitypost.com/science/has_neuro_science_buried_free_will

There’s No Such Thing as Free Will
http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/06/theres-no-such-thing-as-free-will/480750/

Free will is not an illusion after all
https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17835-free-will-is-not-an-illusion-after-all/

Why Quantum Physics Ends the Free Will Debate
http://bigthink.com/dr-kakus-universe/why-quantum-physics-ends-the-free-will-debate

Neuroscience Proves (However Reluctantly) That We Have Free Will
http://bigthink.com/ideafeed/neuroscience-proves-however-reluctantly-that-we-have-free-will

Free Will Is Not An Illusion
http://brainblogger.com/2010/10/25/free-will-is-not-an-illusion/

Neuroscience and Free Will: New study debunks Libet’s interpretation
https://aphilosopherstake.com/2012/08/10/neuroscience-and-free-will-new-study-debunks-libets-interpretation/

Free Will Exists, Even Though Our Brains Know What We're Going To Do Before We Do It
http://www.medicaldaily.com/free-will-exists-even-though-our-brains-know-what-were-going-do-we-do-it-304210

Do Benjamin Libet's Experiments Show that Free Will Is an Illusion?
http://www.evolutionnews.org/2014/01/do_benjamin_lib081171.html

Libet, in his own words, on the meaning of his research.

The Dangers Of Sam Harris’s Anti-Free Will View
http://wmbriggs.com/post/19453/

Exposing Some Holes In the Interpretation of Libet's Free Will Study
https://digest.bps.org.uk/2008/09/19/exposing-some-holes-in-libets-classic-free-will-study/

Credit: Mark Force
i-b-goB

Social climber
Wise Acres
Jan 2, 2017 - 10:56pm PT
Meh!
Meh!
Mark Force

Trad climber
Ashland, Oregon
Jan 3, 2017 - 05:46am PT
Word of the day: archetypal

archetypal (ˌɑːkɪˈtaɪpəl) or archetypical
adj
1. perfect or typical as a specimen of something
2. being an original model or pattern or a prototype
3. (Psychoanalysis) psychoanal of or relating to Jungian archetypes
4. (Art Terms) constantly recurring as a symbol or motif in literature, painting, etc
5. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) constantly recurring as a symbol or motif in literature, painting, etc

Credit: Mark Force

Ardhanarishvara
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ardhanarishvara
MikeL

Social climber
Southern Arizona
Jan 3, 2017 - 07:30am PT
Free will, evolution, the most important scientific concept, intelligent design, archetypal, Ardhanarishvara, moral philosophy, etc. . . . it can be somewhat surprising how much effort is spent at saying what (and how) these things are / exist without much reference to being, to experience, to living (in the moment). So much conceptualism. I would hope that one’s own expression is being generated from personal experience in these topics.

Got free will? What are you seeing?

What scientific concept has most changed your living?

What is your experience of Ardhanarishvara?

What intelligent design can you report, personally?

What is archetypal in your life experience?

What moral philosophy are you living, experiencing, seeing being play out?

How’s evolution working out for you in your life?
WBraun

climber
Jan 3, 2017 - 07:49am PT
What intelligent design can you report, personally?


This guy who calls himself MikeL ....... :-)
c wilmot

climber
Jan 3, 2017 - 07:55am PT
The tip of a dungeness crab claw is the perfect tool to get all the meat out of the body. Seems intelligently designed to me...
Mark Force

Trad climber
Ashland, Oregon
Jan 3, 2017 - 08:05am PT
“There are thousands of wines
that can take over our minds.

Don't think all ecstasies
are the same!

Jesus was lost in his love for God.
His donkey was drunk with barley."

~ Rumi

Credit: Mark Force

High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
Jan 3, 2017 - 09:25am PT
So Mark, I presume you've read all those pieces and probably a lot more re "free will" - so after all this meta-analysis on your part, what is your view, if you have one?

Perhaps the jury is still out? and keeping an open mind re "free will" is best practice?


...

CRISPR will be a huge story in 2017. (Bigger than Trump?) Here are 7 things to look for.

http://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2017/1/3/14093794/crispr-gene-editing-designer-babies

Interesting read / consideration vis a vis Harari's writing on the subject in his latest book, Homo Deus.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
Jan 3, 2017 - 10:04am PT
2017: What scientific term or concept ought to be more widely known?

Sam Harris: Intellectual honesty

"we live in a perpetual choice between conversation and violence. Consequently, few things are more important than a willingness to follow evidence and argument wherever they lead. The ability to change our minds, even on important points—especially on important points—is the only basis for hope that the human causes of human misery can be finally overcome."

https://www.edge.org/response-detail/27227
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