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The Forum > Philosophy & Religion > Obligatory "Existence of God" Thread
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We can't sate your curiosity if you don't tell us what you're curious about.
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My curiosity says that there are new posts therefore I must view them. I think Schrodinger is a fairly good compromise for both sides...
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Schrodinger's Cat is a different problem than Pascal's Wager.

Schrodinger's Cat is both alive and dead at the same time. God is either real or he isn't because the definition of God requires existence (Ontological Proof). While existence isn't a primary attribute, meaning the ontological proof is flawed, the line of logic in the proof does determine that if God in any way doesn't exist, then there is no God.

However, I'm glad you brought this up. As some people here know (I'm looking at you, H2), I love thinking about the implications of God regarding Everett's many worlds solution to the Schrodinger's Cat problem.
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Wait... I guess I need to study Scrodinger deeper... I got him mixed up with Whoever said we will not know for sure until the outcome occurs.
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Schrodinger's Cat is a thought experiment in which a cat is put into a box with radioactive material. If a particle caused by radioactive decay is detected by a Geiger counter, then the cat is killed via poison. Exact rate of decay is something which cannot be predicted, hence we rely on half-lifes to determine the lifespan of radioactive materials.

Because we cannot prove whether the cat is alive or dead, the cat is simultaneously both until the box is opened. It represents how matter collapses into particle form upon observation from a wave of probability and is specifically designed to illustrate aspects of the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics.
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It also shows us that the microscopic doesn't seem to fit with the macroscopic.
The particle is in superposition, but how can a cat be in superposition?
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From what I've heard, wasn't it originally supposed to be sort of a fun way to disprove certain aspects of quantum superposition? And then people realized it was actually probably correct.
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The entire system is in superposition according to the most common interpretation (The Copenhagen interpretation).
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I have to ask... Why risk it. This is really really shallow reasoning; but... If you do not believe in God/ deity, what do you believe will happen to you?
True oblivion is quite a scary prospect; sure, you won't know you are oblivious, but why risk it? Give belief a try; you may even begin to see it as fact.
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Why do you assume all or any atheists are ignorant of religion or simply write it off? Atheists are typically less ignorant than theists; atheism correlates to higher education and higher IQ. At least in the US, atheists and agnostics know more about major religions than theists. That isn't to say that atheists are smart and theists are dumb, but to assume that an atheist is just atheist out of ignorance or pride doesn't follow the statistics.

Also, we already covered Pascal's wager at least twice in this thread. It is at best a ignorant misunderstanding of how statistics works.
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^ Thank you Gorgon (:

True oblivion is quite a scary prospect; sure, you won't know you are oblivious, but why risk it? Give belief a try; you may even begin to see it as fact.


'But why risk it?' made me laugh. What am I risking? I think that if there was a god, he would understand why I don't believe in him, and he would sympathize.
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I apologize for my ignorance about Pascal's Wager. Is that stating we do not know what the true answer is until it is revealed?
You're risking eternal life. Barring all evidence, this is a yes or no question. I believe in that example the odds are fifty fifty. Faith, that Jesus Christ died to save you from sin, in exchange for eternal life.
I am a Chistian because the teachings are basically a physical embodiment of what I believe. I am not telling you to be Christian. Find something which embodies your beliefs. If Athiesm embodies your beliefs, so be it... (What do Athiests believe?) Why did you become an Athiest instead of a Christian or a Buddhist? Statistics and circumstances? If you have already tried a few religions then ignore all this. I am just saying you should try something before disqualifying it. Observation is great but experimentation creates proofes. My final argument has probably been stated on here once or twice but I can't check. There is just as much evidence for both sides in this argument.
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Pascal's Wager. For the record, I know you have the Internet. Feel free to look stuff up yourself.

We have already explained why this is not a 50/50 question. Go back in the thread and read why, we don't need to have this discussion every four pages of thread. Statistics only supports your thesis if you don't understand them at all.
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I can't open that. The browser I am using does not allow for the opening of a secondary window... Sorry.
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Then go back in the thread or simply go to wikipedia yourself. You are capable of it. I have faith in you.
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I apologize for my ignorance about Pascal's Wager. Is that stating we do not know what the true answer is until it is revealed?

Pascal's Wager is saying that you lose nothing if you believe and you're wrong, but everything if you don't and you're wrong. The problem with Pascal's Wager is if it's your only reason for belief, you don't really believe. An omnipotent god would know this.
You're risking eternal life.

Eternal Life is a curse.
Barring all evidence, this is a yes or no question. I believe in that example the odds are fifty fifty.

Where are you getting those odds?
Faith, that Jesus Christ died to save you from sin, in exchange for eternal life.

And what if it's one of the other gods? You do realize just how many belief systems there are, right? Even if there is a god, what are the odds that it's your god? Moreover, what if your the wrong denomination? There are more than 30,000 (IIRC) denominations Christianity alone.
I am a Chistian because the teachings are basically a physical embodiment of what I believe. I am not telling you to be Christian. Find something which embodies your beliefs. If Athiesm embodies your beliefs, so be it... (What do Athiests believe?)

Atheism isn't a belief, it's a lack thereof. Specifically a lack of belief in a god or gods.
Why did you become an Athiest instead of a Christian or a Buddhist? Statistics and circumstances?

Because of several negative aspects of religion. Specifically the many atrocities that religion is responsible for, a lack of evidence for such extraordinary claims, and religion's clouding of my judgement.
If you have already tried a few religions then ignore all this. I am just saying you should try something before disqualifying it.

I have. Most Atheists have. The vast, vast majority that I run into are former Christians.
Observation is great but experimentation creates proofes. My final argument has probably been stated on here once or twice but I can't check. There is just as much evidence for both sides in this argument.

You know how much that is? None. But compare that to the number of claims made by each one. Atheism makes no claims, while religion makes many. Religion has not provided adequate evidence for the sheer number of extraordinary claims it makes.
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First my reason for returning...
I agree with some of what Rowan said, especially towards the beginning of her tenure on this thread.
The dictionary thing... Whoever countered that with the billion billion thingamajigs argument, did they all explode as well? If they did why are there no other galaxies nearby where we can find similar life? After all, we have fairly similar elements. The proof of a cure for cancer argument is a much better try at what I was trying to say up there. If you are a disillusioned Christian, I cannot help you very much; by no means am I good at explaining theology. I have no choice but to agree with the eternal life being a curse thing. I am currently trying to figure that part out.
All in all... I came in here trying to explain the feeling of being warmly loved I have in the hopes of possibly striking the target with my blind stab in the dark.
My use of faith in Jesus Christ was a terribly used umbrella term. I apologize. Ambiguity would have been more appropriate. I just used my own belief.
Most atrocities committed in the name of religion were led by those who were misguided or just greedy.
I am currently writing a fantasy novel in which the main antagonist is a misguided Christian priest.
Jokingly, you could say that Athiests have not given adequete evidence either...Q.o
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If they did why are there no other galaxies nearby where we can find similar life?

Erm... we haven't really ever been out of our own galaxy. We haven't even sent men to Mars yet. We don't really have any way of finding life that's REALLY far away from us yet.
Jokingly, you could say that Athiests have not given adequete evidence either...Q.o

We've already covered that there is no evidence for or against a god. However, the burden of proof is on those who are making the claim - those people, in this case, being Christians.

Also, with regards to your "Why risk it?" argument, I don't think that people who only profess to believe in a god because they are afraid of going to hell are true Christians. Fear of retribution is not what Christianity is about. From my time as a Christian and from what I know of the Bible's and Jesus's primary message, I'd say it's about loving your fellow humans simply because they, too, are souls made by God. Loving them, helping them, doing the best by others you can. It's about being a family with everyone you meet, because everyone is part of God.
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First my reason for returning...
If they did why are there no other galaxies nearby where we can find similar life?


You realize they haven't yet decided whether or not there is simple life on other planets/moons in this solar system and that no human being has explored or taken samples on any other planet of Sol, right? Life is essentially an inevitability with the physical world having the laws that it has. It is possible that life is an inevitability with any set of laws--that type of theory can't be computed yet. A lot of scientists believe that there is lots and lots of life within our own galaxy. We also don't yet know if DNA is the only possible natural mechanism for genetic encoding. There is a lot we don't know when guessing about non-Earth life.

Intelligence is not an inevitability when dealing with life. Lots of the most successful life forms are not intelligent. Earth reptiles almost certainly could never have developed intelligence, but they are highly successful. Cockroaches are among the most successful complex living organisms and they are not smart, nor would they be likely to ever develop intelligence through evolution. The same is true of seaweed. It wouldn't be environmentally advantageous. It is possible that the exact conditions needed to make intelligence are moderately rare, meaning our chances of meeting other intelligent races which develop over a few hundred million years and go extinct is small. That doesn't mean they don't or didn't exist. It just means we have limited ability to pinpoint them in space and time. For now, and in any forseeable future, there's just no way for us to know.
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Why do you assume all or any atheists are ignorant of religion or simply write it off? Atheists are typically less ignorant than theists; atheism correlates to higher education and higher IQ. At least in the US, atheists and agnostics know more about major religions than theists

I remember hearing somewhere that the high IQ stat was bogus. ">Here it is.
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My thing with the "billion billion monkeys and a billion billion typewriters" idea, is that somewhere nearby, the chain of events would probably have occurred in almost the same manner, with a few changes. This would create a rave very much like our own, presumably, one which would have made the same advancements and be in space; if not way more advanced than we are and have at least made itself known.
Rain:
I was trying a gradual build up approach in an argument. Asking a rhetorical question usually allows for the easier buildup of an argument.
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This would create a rave very much like our own

I think this was the idea behind Interstella 5555.
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It is possible that life is an inevitability with any set of laws--that type of theory can't be computed yet.
Altering the laws of physics slightly (such as the gravitational constant) would result in the inability of life to form. Even supposing that a physics principle were discovered that required the laws to be as they are or in some other way which would allow life (which is an enormous assumption), there would still be internally consistent physical systems we could conceptualize which would not allow life to develop. One such system would be an empty set of laws. We would have no way to claim that alternate and lifeless universes do not or could not exist.

I originally posted more than this, but I seem to have accidentally deleted it somehow. That was the gist of it though.
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I remember hearing somewhere that the high IQ stat was bogus. ">Here it is.


Yeah, I cited wikipedia which cited three or four independent studies. You cited a page called "God and Science." I didn't look at the content because it's pretty obvious that one of those is bias.

EDIT: I just got finished reading that page and it doesn't even say what you think it says. It debunked the link between meaningfulness and religion under the link between meaningfulness and IQ. It didn't say anything about religiosity and IQ as directly correlated. Also, that guy's methods were horrid as he took a study which just pointed out a correlation and tried to debunk an argument about causality which never existed. Then he cited additional data which makes perfect sense given the findings of the study he's trying to debunk.

Hydrogen--yes. But also maybe no? As you yourself have said before, any sufficiently complex system may be enough to create consciousness. While it is impossible for us to imagine life outside of these physical laws, I do not doubt that there are other, perhaps an infinite number, of other sets of laws which would also end up in life developing (just in very different, unimaginable ways). For example, if water wasn't more dense than ice, life on Earth would never have lasted long enough to become intelligent. But life would have developed. Perhaps if ice sunk in water, it would have caused some other Murphy's Law style change in the world that we are not thinking of which fundamentally altered the way life developed without destroying it.
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I didn't look at the content because it's pretty obvious that one of those is bias.
How very objective of you?
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The Forum > Philosophy & Religion > Obligatory "Existence of God" Thread
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