Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

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Themis
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Themis »

Kishkumen wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:20 pm
Then you are arguing that one is better, actually. In any case, my point, although I wandered from it, is that ideally atheism should be even more intellectually demanding than theism, but in practice that is often not the case. People often see not worrying about God as a big relief, but I believe Nietzsche showed this was a mirage if not a catastrophe. We are living in that catastrophe.
Not really. I agree that can be more intellectually demanding, but my point was that it doesn't have to consider God in any of that intellectually demanding thinking. It is reasonable for it to be a relief for some, since atheism reject's God existence due to lack of evidence. It's not reasonable to consider God and how one should live their life, when one has zero evidence such a being exists. That should not be confused with not considering many philosophical ideas found in religion.
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Physics Guy »

My ice cream, broccoli, and spinach example was only to show the general principle that adding an option can sometimes make a choice easier, and so having one more thing to worry about, such as God, doesn't necessarily make life harder. Ice cream was not intended to represent God.

On the other hand when I referred to having a big extra piece on the table, that piece was supposed to be God. The conflict among the different parts of oneself is something that I assume is on the table for most people, whether or not God is there too.

My main point remains that I don't think it's easy to just decide what I want, because in practice I seem to be a sort of loose federation of different wishes and habits. It's probably not the ideal to be a one-dimensional character whose every act and thought and feeling can be predicted from one simple principle, but I think some kind of coherence is a goal and it seems hard to achieve. It may be fine to have a certain amount of polyphony in the choir, or to have repertoire that includes a range of styles, but I think I should aim for more than just a bunch of people on stage making noise.

Harmony is going to require actual change, like getting some voices in a choir to sing louder and others to get on key. The divergent pieces of my personality don't seem to recognise a single collective goal spontaneously, though—at least not unless some overriding common issue like survival is at stake. Everybody in the choir thinks that they are the lead.

There may well be ways to resolve that impasse other than appealing to some kind of God. Some of those other ways might seem to me like God by another name, but perhaps not all will. What I find hard to believe is that one can resolve the impasse without introducing some kind of additional axiom into the system, to decide what parts of oneself get to count as the true or right self. Whatever that additional axiom may be, whether or not it is in any way like God, I think it tends to even the scale of difficulty between theism and atheism.

I doubt that anyone can simply do what they themselves want to do, because I don't believe that that's a well-defined thing. So it seems to me that everybody has something to worry about besides what they themselves want, because it seems to me that everyone needs that.
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Kishkumen
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Kishkumen »

Themis wrote:
Wed Apr 07, 2021 3:27 am
Not really. I agree that can be more intellectually demanding, but my point was that it doesn't have to consider God in any of that intellectually demanding thinking. It is reasonable for it to be a relief for some, since atheism reject's God existence due to lack of evidence. It's not reasonable to consider God and how one should live their life, when one has zero evidence such a being exists. That should not be confused with not considering many philosophical ideas found in religion.
I don't see how that is an advantage or necessarily a relief. Of course, my guess as to why most people who reject God do so is that they do so largely for social reasons. They tire of the institutional power of organized religion, and the easiest way to untangle from all of that is to simply say God does not exist. This is one of the reasons mythicism is so attractive to a fairly surprising number of people. It is completely unnecessary to argue Jesus did not exist if all that matters is rejecting the unprovable claim that Jesus is God. Nevertheless, people feel compelled to go further and say there was no Jesus because it allows them the further sense of freedom from the hold that Christianity has on so many people.

The real myth is not the existence of Jesus but the claim that Jesus is God. It is an entirely superfluous claim. Indeed, the claim that Jesus is God derives from first-century philosophical theology regarding the Logos. If the organizing principle of God, the Logos, is to be personified in its interaction with the world, what better way than to stick a charismatic leader in that role and call him the Logos? (Yes, I am being somewhat flippant, but there is only so much time in the day.)

The existence of God is a logical construct that is difficult to get around. In a cosmos of contingency there logically needs be an absolute. That absolute is God, but a God of a very particular kind. Those who argue against such a classical theistic God struggle to find another, better explanation for existence, and usually engage in the pleonastic fallacy somewhere along the line in trying to achieve that. Turtles all the way down, so to speak.

So, the truth of the matter is that people are struggling every bit as hard to argue away the existence of God as others do arguing about the nature of God, vel sim. You might think of it as a very consequential math problem that awaits solving. The vast majority of people stop short of doing the hard work of arguing one way or the other for various reasons, but it does not mean that either side of the argument is less consequential or difficult. I say this as a person who belongs to that large majority. I am not equipped to argue for or against the existence of God. I don't know that anyone on this discussion board really is thus equipped. We opine on the issue and declare why we take our particular preferred side, but we haven't taken even the first steps toward answering this most momentous of questions.
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Themis »

Physics Guy wrote:
Wed Apr 07, 2021 11:29 am
My ice cream, broccoli, and spinach example was only to show the general principle that adding an option can sometimes make a choice easier, and so having one more thing to worry about, such as God, doesn't necessarily make life harder. Ice cream was not intended to represent God.
It just adds one more factor in how one is to decide what to do. I was also just wondering if we have an example of something related to the discussion.
I doubt that anyone can simply do what they themselves want to do, because I don't believe that that's a well-defined thing. So it seems to me that everybody has something to worry about besides what they themselves want, because it seems to me that everyone needs that.
It can be very complicated, although everything may be just a mess of what all our wants and dislikes. I don't like the taste of broccoli, but I want the health benefits of consuming it.
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Themis »

Kishkumen wrote:
Wed Apr 07, 2021 12:53 pm
I don't see how that is an advantage or necessarily a relief. Of course, my guess as to why most people who reject God do so is that they do so largely for social reasons. They tire of the institutional power of organized religion, and the easiest way to untangle from all of that is to simply say God does not exist. This is one of the reasons mythicism is so attractive to a fairly surprising number of people. It is completely unnecessary to argue Jesus did not exist if all that matters is rejecting the unprovable claim that Jesus is God. Nevertheless, people feel compelled to go further and say there was no Jesus because it allows them the further sense of freedom from the hold that Christianity has on so many people.
I believe I have already clarified that it is not an advantage. The theist may have things right which would give the theist the advantage. Advantage may have more to do with who is more accurate. Relief is a subjective feeling, so yes it can be a relief for some atheist's not to consider God in how they decide to live their life, just as theist could feel relief in looking to what they think God wants. I do agree that it is more complicated for why people believe an act the way they do, and many atheists and theists come to those beliefs in illogical ways. The funny thing is you don't see how it can be a relief but then later use the term sense of freedom. That would seem to be a term very related to feelings of relief.
The existence of God is a logical construct that is difficult to get around. In a cosmos of contingency there logically needs be an absolute. That absolute is God, but a God of a very particular kind. Those who argue against such a classical theistic God struggle to find another, better explanation for existence, and usually engage in the pleonastic fallacy somewhere along the line in trying to achieve that. Turtles all the way down, so to speak.

So, the truth of the matter is that people are struggling every bit as hard to argue away the existence of God as others do arguing about the nature of God, vel sim. You might think of it as a very consequential math problem that awaits solving. The vast majority of people stop short of doing the hard work of arguing one way or the other for various reasons, but it does not mean that either side of the argument is less consequential or difficult. I say this as a person who belongs to that large majority. I am not equipped to argue for or against the existence of God. I don't know that anyone on this discussion board really is thus equipped. We opine on the issue and declare why we take our particular preferred side, but we haven't taken even the first steps toward answering this most momentous of questions.
One doesn't need to argue away the existence of God anymore then they need to argue away the existence of Bigfoot. They both lack good evidence. I do disagree with absolute rejection of God's existence, but lack of evidence is reasonable grounds one need not argue against God's existence. The other problem is defining God, especially not a useless definition, as well as many philosophical arguments are based on original assumptions we have no way of knowing they are accurate. Sure we can make lots of logical arguments from those assumptions, but why? I think the atheist and agnostic take is if God wants to prove God exists then fine. Until then there is no reasonable grounds to seriously consider God existing. When it comes to the big questions about the universe, the hard sciences have a better track record of collecting evidence and explanations.
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Kishkumen »

Themis wrote:
Wed Apr 07, 2021 5:45 pm
I believe I have already clarified that it is not an advantage. The theist may have things right which would give the theist the advantage. Advantage may have more to do with who is more accurate. Relief is a subjective feeling, so yes it can be a relief for some atheist's not to consider God in how they decide to live their life, just as theist could feel relief in looking to what they think God wants. I do agree that it is more complicated for why people believe an act the way they do, and many atheists and theists come to those beliefs in illogical ways. The funny thing is you don't see how it can be a relief but then later use the term sense of freedom. That would seem to be a term very related to feelings of relief.
I agree with you that individual people may feel relief and they may feel a sense of freedom. What I am trying to say is that there is too much at stake to justify feeling relieved or free, and it is only by failing to acknowledge the real problems that we allow ourselves to feel those things.
One doesn't need to argue away the existence of God anymore then they need to argue away the existence of Bigfoot. They both lack good evidence. I do disagree with absolute rejection of God's existence, but lack of evidence is reasonable grounds one need not argue against God's existence. The other problem is defining God, especially not a useless definition, as well as many philosophical arguments are based on original assumptions we have no way of knowing they are accurate. Sure we can make lots of logical arguments from those assumptions, but why? I think the atheist and agnostic take is if God wants to prove God exists then fine. Until then there is no reasonable grounds to seriously consider God existing. When it comes to the big questions about the universe, the hard sciences have a better track record of collecting evidence and explanations.
Sure! People can opt out of just about anything. Even if it is a category error to compare the question of the existence of God to Bigfoot, they are free to do so if they want to opt for a palliative over the challenge of seeking real answers.
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Lem »

Physics Guy wrote:
Wed Apr 07, 2021 11:29 am
My ice cream, broccoli, and spinach example was only to show the general principle that adding an option can sometimes make a choice easier, and so having one more thing to worry about, such as God, doesn't necessarily make life harder. Ice cream was not intended to represent God.

On the other hand when I referred to having a big extra piece on the table, that piece was supposed to be God. The conflict among the different parts of oneself is something that I assume is on the table for most people, whether or not God is there too.
Ah, that explains it then. My apologies if my joke fell flat, I was assuming that the juxtaposition of the two paragraphs could be taken to imply that the ice cream added to the table did indeed represent the extra piece supposed to be God.
My main point remains that I don't think it's easy to just decide what I want, because in practice I seem to be a sort of loose federation of different wishes and habits. It's probably not the ideal to be a one-dimensional character whose every act and thought and feeling can be predicted from one simple principle, but I think some kind of coherence is a goal and it seems hard to achieve. It may be fine to have a certain amount of polyphony in the choir, or to have repertoire that includes a range of styles, but I think I should aim for more than just a bunch of people on stage making noise.

Harmony is going to require actual change, like getting some voices in a choir to sing louder and others to get on key. The divergent pieces of my personality don't seem to recognise a single collective goal spontaneously, though—at least not unless some overriding common issue like survival is at stake. Everybody in the choir thinks that they are the lead.
Absolutely. A portion of my doctoral work focused on the policy implications of consumer habits and heuristic rules, and how that behavior fit into the standard economic model that assumes efficiency and full information. Another part was this issue of how to "decide what I want," since as you pointed out, we are a "sort of loose federation of different wishes and habits". A very simple example would be: are you the person who decides in the evening to get up at 6am to go to the gym, or are you the 6 am person who feels like you need more sleep? Questions like this make expectations about people's economic behavior very difficult to predict. That old one dimensional model of a rational thinker with full information who maximizes utility just doesn't tell the whole story.
There may well be ways to resolve that impasse other than appealing to some kind of God. Some of those other ways might seem to me like God by another name, but perhaps not all will. What I find hard to believe is that one can resolve the impasse without introducing some kind of additional axiom into the system, to decide what parts of oneself get to count as the true or right self. Whatever that additional axiom may be, whether or not it is in any way like God, I think it tends to even the scale of difficulty between theism and atheism.
Hence the concept of heuristics, which are introduced into the process, and which of course can be influenced by a virtually infinite variety of sources.
I doubt that anyone can simply do what they themselves want to do, because I don't believe that that's a well-defined thing. So it seems to me that everybody has something to worry about besides what they themselves want, because it seems to me that everyone needs that.
Or society tells them so.
"choosing to work the job she loved and elevated to the end." -honorentheos
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Doctor CamNC4Me »

So, once again I'm outing myself as an ignorant man by asking this, but is heuristic thinking basically 'logical fallacy thinking'? Argumentum ad populum and the such? I get that we have to take short cuts for our decision-making process, but is it more than that? Is it 'bad' thinking? Or can heuristic thinking actually be a reliable way of reasoning out a problem?

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Clinton King commenting on SeN: "My (perhaps) uncommon personal opinion: I find it easier to doubt the accuracy of carbon dating than the historicity of the Book of Abraham narrative." Good, Lord.
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Themis »

Kishkumen wrote:
Wed Apr 07, 2021 6:37 pm
I agree with you that individual people may feel relief and they may feel a sense of freedom. What I am trying to say is that there is too much at stake to justify feeling relieved or free, and it is only by failing to acknowledge the real problems that we allow ourselves to feel those things.
I never felt relief when I realized the Mormon God did not exist, but it did free me up for other possibilities. I suppose if believe in God was attached to having to do things one does not want to do it might be a relief realizing that God does not exist. I'm not sure what you think is at stake, unless it is something like we see In Mormonism or Christianity of not believing in God means being damned, but then we probably wouldn't get the right one anyways. I like what Amy from Big Bang theory says "I don't object to the concept of a deity, but I'm baffled by the notion of one that takes attendance". It reasonably baffles me that God would want belief in God in order to avoid punishment or receive a reward. For me the most reasonable position is agnostic in light of no good evidence of God.
Sure! People can opt out of just about anything. Even if it is a category error to compare the question of the existence of God to Bigfoot, they are free to do so if they want to opt for a palliative over the challenge of seeking real answers.
While one existing would have real significance to us, it doesn't change the fact they both lack good evidence. Lack of evidence means one doesn't need to argue for their non-existence. Those claiming they exist need to make good arguments involving good evidence they do exist in order for others to reasonably agree with their claims. The most reasonable position is that they probably don't exist, but open to any evidence they do. Most people have no problem dismissing extraordinary claims that don't relate to religious or political beliefs.
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Re: Another Mopologist Bites The Dust, Bryce Haymond Edition

Post by Lem »

Doctor CamNC4Me wrote:
Thu Apr 08, 2021 12:27 am
So, once again I'm outing myself as an ignorant man by asking this, but is heuristic thinking basically 'logical fallacy thinking'? Argumentum ad populum and the such? I get that we have to take short cuts for our decision-making process, but is it more than that? Is it 'bad' thinking? Or can heuristic thinking actually be a reliable way of reasoning out a problem?

- Doc
Heuristic rules, at least in my policy analysis area, are not unreasonable at all. Rather, they are an admission that full information is not only technically almost impossible but also prohibitively expensive in a real world scenario. The main problem is it is primarily a backward looking measure, so the best approach is to combine it with a forward looking prediction, however, that's a lot to ask of the average consumer.
"choosing to work the job she loved and elevated to the end." -honorentheos
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