Open thread for episode 23.15: Matt & Don


Don talks about some of the legislative action in Texas and what’s going on behind the scenes.

Comments

  1. Thomas2019 says

    I appreciate the discussion. Had some more thinking to do when don mentioned things are not like bowling pins and more statistical. If you can rewind and do the big bang over the exact same way we could still end up with a different outcome is what I take from that. Also consciousness arising from non conscious matter is something else i need to look into further. Still enjoyed the conversation and hopefully ill be able to call back in another day.

  2. oreoman1987 says

    The sort of skepticism that Matt is applying isn’t really skepticism at all since he still believes in principle based on faith like science and Occam’s razor. The reason they’re based on faith is because of the problems of induction and underdetermination. Also the demarcation problem. Occam’s razor is also a questionable principle because by its own logic solipsism would be a correct theory over science since it makes less assumptions than science does. His positions also appear contradictory because he has said in this episode and in past debates that he’s not certain of anything. If he believes that then it follows that he doesn’t know anything. Not even that proposition.

  3. says

    @oreoman1987 This is demonstrated when Matt’s asked what evidence would convince him for the existence of God. His answer: “I don’t know.” He doesn’t even know what he’s rejecting, so I don’t even know how he’s an atheist except to say that which he doesn’t understand nor can’t define is essentially what he disbelieves in which certainly does come off as self-contradictory. Despite that, today’s show was interesting for sure.

  4. oreoman1987 says

    Kafei, For sure. I don’t see how he doesn’t see the inconsistency of his own assumptions. It was also evident in his debate with Sye in which he admitted that he wouldn’t know if his reasoning was valid or not. And when he said he doesn’t claim to know anything despite the fact that he makes knowledge claims on YouTube all the time.

  5. says

    Please, please ban Kafei. He has totally derailed the last couple of episodes/forums. He is dishonest and only interested in preaching.
    And now it looks like he has brought Oreoman1987 back, who also cogged the forum and was never interested in honest discussion.

  6. thomas2019 says

    I appreciate the discussion. Had some more thinking to do when don mentioned things are not like bowling pins and more statistical. If you can rewind and do the big bang over the exact same way we could still end up with a different outcome is what I take from that. Also consciousness arising from non conscious matter is something else i need to look into further. Still enjoyed the conversation and hopefully ill be able to call back in another day.
    Also I would like to respond to some viewers from the chat replay. I dont have a pastor or a church. I wrote my own script I did not plagiarize or take my ideas from someone else. Should have took more time to prepare my notes in hindsight

  7. buddyward says

    Oh wow someone is here to attack the host of the show while the host is not here to defend himself. It is really funny how every time Oreoman1987 comes on here attacks Matt but does not have the balls to talk to Matt himself. Reminds me of that little Chihuahua my neighbor has that barks at people all the time and then runs away the moment you walk in its direction.

  8. DanDare2050 says

    oreoman1987 (and Kafei) is applying manipulative sophistry while Matt is using reason.
    Science progresses from experience of real things. I stub my toe several times and it hurts. I can draw reasonable conclusion that it will hurt again in the future if I again stub my toe. If someone else stubs their toe and reports that its hurt that builds my confidence that stub toe = pain. Note the word confidence. Occam’s Razor (or parsimony) is simply the sensible requirement that you don’t add unknown extra things to explanations. If you thing there is an extra thing to add to an explanation then seek it out and find a way to detect it and demonstrate it. Until such time just work with what you’ve got.
    To suggest this is all faith is to use the term faith in a manipulative, rather than rational, way. In a religious context faith is accepting things to be so without evidence, without testing (faith = wish it to be so). In the scientific context that meaning of the word faith is not applicable and these guys are using a different version of the word (faith = reasoned confidence) as if it was the religious version. It is underhanded and possibly an intentional deceit.

  9. says

    @Jeanette

    Please, please ban Kafei. He has totally derailed the last couple of episodes/forums.

    I don’t derail anything. Did you even watch today’s episode? These very topics come up on the show naturally or I’ll respond to questions answered here. Is it my fault that people want to address these topics? For instance, Twarren1111 admits that he was just being introduced to this research, but then he attempted to associate this research with the so-called “supernatural,” when I’ve been at great pains to express that supernatural defined as that which defies the laws of physics is irrelevant to that research.

    He is dishonest and only interested in preaching.

    Preaching the science. Guilty of that.

    And now it looks like he has brought Oreoman1987 back, who also cogged the forum and was never interested in honest discussion.

    I could cry, “Please ban Jeanette! She’s intolerant and close-minded.” But I don’t, because I’m willing to engage in conversation among any topics that arise from the content of the corresponding episode to the thread.

  10. oreoman1987 says

    DanDare2050, Occam’s razors logic would allow solipsism to be true and science to be false since it makes far fewer assumptions than science does. Parsimony has never had a link demonstrated between either simplicity or intuition. Yes, science is based on faith because it’s based on induction. The problem of underdetermination shows that no scientific theory can be verified or falsified. In the end, scientific theories can only be best guesses.

    Confidence is by definition faith. Most of the world is confident that a god exists but I’m sure you wouldn’t agree with them.

    Science is based on several unproven assumptions https://undsci.berkeley.edu/article/basic_assumptions

    So, therefore, it’s based on faith.

    Münchhausen trilemma shows that religion and science are equally faith-based because they both end up in either an unproven axiom, circularity, or an infinite regress.

  11. oreoman1987 says

    DanDare2050, Reasoning is also based on faith because it cannot justify itself without circularity. You must have faith in your reasoning in order to put stock into it.

  12. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Could someone remind me how my last interaction with Oreo went? I don’t remember. I’m sure I asked them something like:

    So, when you cross a busy street at a crosswalk with a “walk / don’t walk” electronic sign, I assume you typically wait for the “walk” sign before crossing the street. Why? It is because you have an expectation that you are far less likely to be injured compared to crossing when the “don’t walk” sign is on. How did you reach that expectation? I assume through substantial amounts of inductive and deductive reasoning.

    I don’t remember how that conversation ended. I have a murky memory that Oreo dodged the question and refused to answer how he reasons about the world and how he chooses the actions that he takes, and instead he basically said that he would only attack our epistemology without presenting his own – or something like that.

    I’m still of the opinion that both of them (Kafei and Oreoman) should be banned.

  13. Mezza says

    Prologue
    I have been meaning to call the show and respond to the caller Saad (from Pakistan) for weeks but I just don’t have the time (and living in a completely different timezone does not help). So, a blog post might be the best way to do this.

    There are many things to break down in Saad’s calls. Each week he calls with a different apologetic or mental gymnastics that most mainstream Muslims present (quite possibly most other believers of other faiths). I know this because I have been there as an ex-Muslim. So, you can guess how personal this feels and frustrating too.

    Let me start by saying that most Muslims, despite Saad’s otherwise claims, come to believe their faith through parental and communal practices/beliefs. There are many self-perpetuating stories and myths where the problematic aspects either become noise or get swept under the carpet through the apologetics of Imams. Even the most questioning Muslims remain in their faith to Allah because that’s heavily indoctrinated and ingrained in us from very early ages. Moreso in places like Pakistan where the religion is really a big part of people’s identities. You can hear this in Saad’s use of language around his feelings and intuition, phrases like “I have always felt X; I thought Y” etc.

    In the Beginning
    His earlier calls were pertaining Quran but he has demonstrated how little his knowledge of Quran was. He actually said many times he neither is a scholar, nor has he actually fully studied the details of it. But I believe that he might not have read the Quran much at all (perhaps now he has). As he pointed out, because Arabic is the original language of Quran, traditionally (non-Arabic speakers) we are taught how to read the Quran, but not necessarily understand Arabic (though many do through Islamic studies classes). I have always read the translation along side of reading the Arabic. Interestingly, though, most of the problematic things did not bother me because I kept thinking Allah knew the best. Afterall, the core foundation is believing there is no god but Allah, he is the only one and most powerful/all knowing.

    Saad tried to present the tired “miracles of Quran” and started with things like the embryo, while both admitting that he is neither a Quranic scholar, nor a scientific one. And yet, he vehemently defended this to be a miraculous thing. I want to give him credit though, he was open to the criticisms by Matt (and the co-hosts) and has shown that he has changed some of his positions in the following weeks. However, the fact remained that he did not want to actually, fully acknowledge that these things are not miracles, nor even the stories about these things are accurate.

    For this, I wanted to highlight a point. It does not matter if Quran has some serendipitous interesting things in it; it also has a lot of errors. And even one is enough because Quran itself has challenges to non-believers and one of them is to point out any mistake in it. Quran is meant to be the direct word of god, unlike the Bible (though its authorship is all around the place!). So, even if I give one example, that should be enough to bring it all down. I have more than one. (everything I list is just a snippet, not comprehensive, and I did not bother referencing everything but easy find/verify all of this)

    Some Quranic Failures/Problems
    Scientific ones:
    1) Stars are actual oil lamps. Like, literally Quran says they are candles/lamps in the sky. And moon is also a lamp, has its own light produced. (25:61) –(but this can be disputed by 71:16 which often translates it to be a reflected light source – so, contradiction)
    2) In relation to that, then the shooting stars are fireballs thrown at Djinn (Genies – invisible demonic beings from Middle Eastern mythologies) that try to steal secrets from Heaven (15:17,18).
    3) And these two bring me to the next point, one of the supposed miracle verses from Quran to use for the big bang is actually much clearer about a flat earth (91: 6, 71:19). It talks about how Allah rolled out the earth like a carpet, expanded it. Then talks about how the sky is a dome that he raised (without pillars) where beyond it, clearly heavens and the god resides (he literally even references a great throne there)13:2, 20:4, 20:5. We can confirm this, because we know Djinns try to fly to the heavens to eavesdrop and steal secrets of Allah and they get angels throwing fireballs at them. We can all observe this happening in the night sky.
    4) Another scientific miracle that Muslims (through hearsay) bring up is a massive failure on part of the Quran (and this bothered me even while I was a believer). Allah calls the mountains as pegs on Earth, holding Earth together (15:19)! How is this even possible, considering mountains form out of tectonic shifts and smashing of earth. They are born out of instability and they are not stapled on Earth like pegs where Allah explicitly claims.
    5) Quran says semen comes from men’s backbones. I will just leave this up to you to research.
    6) Quran claims every living being made of pairs of male and female but fails to mention intersex, asexual, agender, single celled organisms etc. You might say, hey, people at that time would not understand this, but the point is Quran is meant to be the miraculous word of God, there shouldn’t be any real limitations to it. Also, Allah goes out of his way to make some point of knowledge whenever it claims something scientific.
    7) Quran states a literal Noah’s flood story.
    8) There is a group of people who supposedly slept in a cave for hundreds of years. There are no answers is to who they were, where this cave were etc. were never answered by the prophet nor god, but we are expected to just buy into this common myth from the era (whole section dedicated to the story, Chapter 18).
    9) Allah, for some reason, needs Angels to carry out duties but he is supposed to be all powerful, all knowing, all everything basically. The mythology here really falls apart. There is also problem of Satan who managed to get out of God’s will somehow, but now, that was God’s will all along…
    10) He claims that he would use lightning bolts to strike down people who would dispute god…yeah, that happens. (13:13)
    11) He responds to all prayer, all of it. Pray and he will answer…yes, this too happens without falter.

    Some moral problems:

    12) God is the provider of both the good and the evil. He created both. He is omnipotent and omniscient, he chose this system/universe to be the best for us. So, he is an asshole.
    13) God asked Abraham to kill his son…he didn’t, and the blade that he tried to kill his son with was made dull…however, he was under the impression that he needed to kill his son. Allah can muddle up a person’s one of the most basic human instincts/core values so badly (mostly via threats and bullying because he is powerful and he created us) that we can consider killing our own children…
    14) Women were given many progressive rights under Islam, however, it didn’t change the fact that they are only worth 1/3 of men.
    15) He loves threatening everyone with Hell, even Muslims and believers.

    In Conclusion
    This is all for now for the lists. There is sooo much more, especially when we start the Hadith (the life of the prophet and his sayings) but I won’t go there. There really is no reason to. Again, the God in Islam is described to be perfect, and so is Quran. Even if there is a tiny error in it, it should be met with discredit. And yet Muslims are unwilling to do that, or cannot do that. My understanding is because of the deep indoctrination that is fuelled by fear. At the end of the day, Allah and the prophet promised a lot of hell fire to everyone.

    Managing to break through all this, unlearning all the years of teachings was hard but wroth it. I think it helped that I went out of my way to actually trying to learn. I was praying to God every day that he would put me onto the right path, a path that leads to him. Here I am, an atheist. Take that however you will. Just know this, Quran and its supposed miracles are not good enough, they do not help the truth claim about anything Islam proposes, but it surely is helpful to understand it probably is not.

  14. Stephen Holtom says

    I really think you are wrong on “nothing”, and I squirm every time it comes up now. “Until someone shows evidence of a nothing”…what are you talking about?!

    If I say “There’s nothing to be afraid of” that doesn’t mean I think we *should* be afraid, and we should be afraid of something I’m labelling “nothing”.
    And it’s this kind of mis-parse that you are doing repeatedly on the show.

  15. indianajones says

    Oreo is a 4 year old asking infinitely regressive ‘but why?’s dressed up in many many more words.

  16. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, Where did I dodge it? Using induction or deduction every day doesn’t require you to believe it. David Hume himself who came up with the problem of induction said that he himself uses induction but that doesn’t mean he thought it’s justified to hold. While I may also use things like induction and science every day myself, that doesn’t indicate that I think it’s rational. My argument is is that induction doesn’t work and that there is no scientific method. https://youtu.be/AqI0AeUqnmY

  17. oreoman1987 says

    indianajones, That’s the point of the regress problem. If you don’t have a starting point that solves it, then you have no justified beliefs.

  18. Skye Eldrich says

    Again, I’m gonna add my request to ban Kafei and Oreoman too. They do NOTHING to add to discussion; between Kafei’s incessant trolling and sealioning, and Oreo’s equal trolling and idiocy… It’s time to get rid of them FAST so that people can actually talk about the show this week, rather than EFFING NONSENSE “PERRENIAL PHILOSOPHY” AGAIN.

    And I will keep posting this every week until one of the hosts peeks in and does something.

  19. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    As obnoxious as Kafei is, I feel like I understand now what he’s talking about. It took a few thousand posts, but I got there. As for Oreoman, I’m still completely lost as to what he’s on about. It still seems like he thinks the same way that the rest of us do, but that he attaches different labels to it. I’ve invited him many times to explain the functional difference – e.g. how he approaches the world differs in any practical way from how I approach the world, and he keeps getting stuck in semantics. “A rose by any other name would smell just as sweet” is a poetic way of making my point – I don’t care whether I use the use “believe” or “proclivity”. If two systems of thought and action are identical except for what labels one uses to describe them, then the difference doesn’t matter. Again, I’m waiting for Oreoman to explain the difference – if any – between the conventional way of thinking and acting, and his way of thinking and acting, because I still don’t see any difference.

  20. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreoman
    I was thinking a lot about it. Let me attack through a different method as well.

    Have you ever been surprised after your philosophical revelations? I assume yes. What is “to be surprised”? To be surprised is an emotional state that happens as a result of observations not matching prior expectations. In other words, I’m trying to assert that you have expectations about the future.

    Where or how did you get these expectations? For many of the expectations that you hold, you form those expectations through the same mental methods that the rest of us do, and that method is typically is a combination of inductive and deductive reasoning.

    So, I hope that you can grant to me that you have expectations, and that you create expectations through the use of the methods of empiricism, and science, and reason.

    The question that I still don’t understand is: What do you think is the difference between “I believe that the Sun will rise tomorrow” vs “I expect that the Sun will rise tomorrow” ? To me, I see no difference between those two assertions. They have the same informational content. They describe the same internal mental state – the state of having an expectation about the future.

  21. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, What makes you think that everyone in the world thinks the same way as you do? Clearly people don’t hold the same beliefs with regards to anything. Also, how do you know that you’re thinking? To say that you exist as a thinking being is to beg the question. How do you know it’s not just an evil scientist controlling your brain from a super computer? These are just more assumptions that your making in order to come to your conclusions about things. Descartes axioms of “I think, therefore I am” and that “God exists” we’re both exposed as circular and question-begging by the likes of Hume and Kant. These are axioms that he used to try and escape solipsism and they have proven not to be successful. This is why you need axioms to try to prove any of your assumptions.

  22. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, What makes you think that everyone in the world thinks the same way as you do? Clearly people don’t hold the same beliefs with regards to anything. Also, how do you know that you’re thinking? To say that you exist as a thinking being is to beg the question. How do you know it’s not just an evil scientist controlling your brain from a super computer? These are just more assumptions that you’re making in order to come to your conclusions about things. Descartes axioms of “I think, therefore I am” and that “God exists” we’re both exposed as circular and question-begging by the likes of Hume and Kant. These are axioms that he used to try and escape solipsism and they have proven not to be successful. This is why you need axioms to try to prove any of your assumptions.

    For example science starts with the assumption of the uniformity of nature and religion starts with the axioms that the Bible is true or that god exists.

    What’s your starting point for reasoning?

  23. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    And there we go again. Rather than explaining his own position, he just attacks mine. I’m not interested in playing along. I’ve done that far too much. Explain yourself and answer my questions first, or else I won’t answer yours.

  24. oreoman1987 says

    Skye Eldrich, I raised objections to things what Matt said in this episode because he had shown himself to be inconsistent with his position. He says that he doesn’t have certainty of anything, nor that he doesn’t claim to know anything but yet he still goes on to make knowledge claims and assert that people are wrong about things. Which is a contradiction. I’m also questioning his faith in science and it’s usefulness. I raise these objections because he made quite a few assumptions that I felt he didn’t justify clearly.

  25. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Which is a contradiction.

    No, it’s not. They’re using the words according to common usage, and not according to whatever particular esoteric definitions that you wish to foist onto the rest of us unwillingly. “Knowledge” is not a claim to infallibility. “Assert that people are wrong about things” is not a claim to infallibility.

  26. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, I don’t see any difference between believing the sun will rise tomorrow or that I expect it will rise tomorrow. I actually don’t expect anything from any occurrence because While I may use induction sometimes, I don’t take it for granted due to it being circular. My position is is that we shouldn’t rely on induction or science and try to actually find a criterion that actually does give us knowledge and removes the need for faith and assumptions.

  27. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreoman
    Have you ever been surprised? I assume yes. How can you be surprised without seeing something that violated a previously held expectation? I don’t understand what you could possibly mean.

  28. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, I never said it was a claim to infallibility. The point is is that if Matt doesn’t know anything with certainty, then he doesn’t know anything and has no standard by which he can know anyone is wrong about anything.

  29. Wiggle Puppy says

    @ EL: Spoiler alert: you’re not going to get direct answers to your questions.

    Case in point:

    Q: “How could you be surprised without seeing something that violated a previously held expectation?”

    A: Well, Matt’s epistemology is flawed because…

    There is no point to this.

  30. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Wiggle Puppy
    I know. I felt like I didn’t give quite enough effort to this guy compared to Kafei. Sorry. Allow me to humor myself for a few more posts. I had a new approach or two that has been nagging at me, and will nag at me unless I get a chance to try it out.

  31. Wiggle Puppy says

    Okay, but just as before, oreo is equating “claims of knowledge” with “claims of absolute certainty,” and I remember trying to explain about a dozen times how Matt (and most of the people on here) don’t use the terms in that way, and oreo ignored that and kept straw manning. If you’re talking with someone who insists on using their own esoteric definitions for things in order to saddle you with a position you don’t hold, they aren’t being honest, and conversation probably won’t go too well. But good luck to you.

  32. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I was watching the video posted above, and this part stuck out enough for me to comment on it.
    https://youtu.be/AqI0AeUqnmY?t=1515

    […] but science doesn’t progress by just assuming silly things or things that we think probably don’t affect things definitely don’t. Science progresses by questioning everything […]

    This is basically false. Contrary to this assertion, this is exactly how science progresses.

    However, more broadly, most of this video is easily dealt with by saying:

    Ok, instead of using a naive, overly-simplistic version of falsification, could you please attack a sophisticated Bayesian approach? For a tolerable start on this topic, see the work of Richard Carrier, such as his peer reviewed book “Proving History”.

    I get really irritated by “sophisticated philosophers” who attack “naive induction” instead of attacking a proper Bayesian approach.

  33. oreoman1987 says

    Wiggle Puppy, The problem is is that saying everything you said was an appeal to absolute certainty and was a knowledge claim. Which contradicts your point. It’s not a strawman at all since Matt makes appeals to certainty and makes knowledge claims all the time.

  34. speedofsound says

    @EnlightenmentLiberal

    This is the rot in modern philosophy. Solipsism, BIV, problems of induction. The only reason I see to keep philosophy around is that more of it is the only way to cure the rot. A vaccine made from the disease.

    Oreaoman’s words from #21

    These are axioms that he used to try and escape solipsism and they have proven not to be successful. This is why you need axioms to try to prove any of your assumptions.

    The error here is this ‘you need’ axioms. This is the opposite of science. If it were axioms all the way down then science would be reduced to looking stuff up in our axiom recipe book. If our lives and our crossing the street problem were reduced to certainty, proof, and axioms, then we would be reduced to motors that are switched on and off by certainty. No awareness necessary.

    There is much equivocation in the words of the would be solipsist/BIV

    How do you know it’s not just an evil scientist controlling your brain from a super computer?

    This is the goto thought experiment. This is like Scrooges undigested bit of beef. BIV could be one of an infinite set of hypotheses we could generate to explain just one level above where we are in physics. Each hypothesis stands on it’s own and must be digested a bit before offering it. Undigested it has all the import of it’s 1 divided by infinity probability. We are somehow supposed to be impressed by this improbable and underspecified little line of ‘wisdom’. BIV and most other thought experiments fall apart when you consider what is really meant by the word reality. You EnlightenmentLiberal, touched on it above with t he bit about the sun rising. Reality is our best guess interactions with a world that so totally IS regular, with a brain that gets it right just often enough to survive. Axioms are not only unnecessary, they are NOT reality. Reality requires uncertainty to work at all. The axiom driven certain being is an imagined god who would necessarily be outside of and more complex than the reality it is certain about and then we take that to infinite regress.

    How is god so certain that it is not just controlled by an evil scientist one dimension removed?

    To summarize, the odd thing is, if we were certain we could not be embedded in the cosmos but would have to be outside of it. But there is no ‘outside’ to the damned thing. It does not work like that.

  35. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, Why do you think the Bayesian approach solved the problem of induction? What makes it a better approach than any other in regards to science?

  36. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, Why do you think the Bayesian approach solves the problem of induction? What makes it a better approach than any other in regards to science?

  37. speedofsound says

    @oreoman1987 (#28)

    I never said it was a claim to infallibility. The point is is that if Matt doesn’t know anything with certainty, then he doesn’t know anything and has no standard by which he can know anyone is wrong about anything.

    What gives you the idea that knowing is ‘knowing with certainty’? The problem you have here is that you are imagining and asserting absolutes which turn out to be nonsense.

  38. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To oreoman1987
    I already said that I’m not answering any more of your questions until you answer mine.

    Have you ever been surprised? Have you ever had an expectation about the future? Have you ever had an expectation about the future which turned out to be wrong? I understand what it means to be surprised in the following sense: Someone can be surprised when one of their particular expectations about the future turns out to be wrong. Do you use different definitions of these words, and if so, what definitions do you use?

  39. oreoman1987 says

    speedofsound, The problem is is that if you don’t have a starting point for reasoning (axiom), then you can’t get started debating or defending your positions. Without axioms it’s impossible to prove anything.

  40. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, The problem is is that your question about being “surprised” about something seems nonsensical and assumes a particular presupposition of everything and everyone. I’d say you shouldn’t be surprised of anything but rather have a critical mind towards every belief you hold

  41. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreoman
    I ask again, more directly this time: Do you think it’s ok to create, form, and hold expectations about the future? Do you create, form, and hold any expectations about any future event?

  42. oreoman1987 says

    speedofsound, “What gives you the idea that knowing is ‘knowing with certainty’? The problem you have here is that you are imagining and asserting absolutes which turn out to be nonsense.“

    Because if you’re not certain of something, Then you don’t know it since it would be possible to contradict it. Also, where was what I said exposed as nonsense?

  43. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, “I ask again, more directly this time: Do you think it’s ok to create, form, and hold expectations about the future? Do you create, form, and hold any expectations about any future event?“

    No. At least not in a sense of taking it for granted. This is an example of faith. While it’s okay to use it, it doesn’t necessarily lead to certainty or probability about any proposition due to the Mew Riddle of Induction. Which is a problem for deduction.

  44. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, “I ask again, more directly this time: Do you think it’s ok to create, form, and hold expectations about the future? Do you create, form, and hold any expectations about any future event?“

    No. At least not in a sense of taking it for granted. This is an example of faith. While it’s okay to use it, it doesn’t necessarily lead to certainty or probability about any proposition due to the New Riddle of Induction. Which is a problem for deduction.

  45. oreoman1987 says

    speedofsound, No, but they’re similar because an axiom is something you assume in your first line of any proof since it cannot be demonstrated. If it were provable, then it would be circular.

    For example, science starts with the assumption of the uniformity of nature. This axiom isn’t demonstrable due to the issue with induction.

  46. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    While it’s okay to use it,

    I don’t understand what it means “to use it”. How does one use an expectation? An expectation is a mental state. It is an emotional state. It is an emotional, mental state of expecting or believing or knowing that something will happen. Insert any of the other applicable synonyms for “expect”.
    https://www.thesaurus.com/browse/expect

    One cannot use “an expectation”. That makes no sense.

    I ask you again: Do you have any expectations about the future, or not? In other words, do you have the emotional state of confidence, any sort of confidence, that some particular event will happen in the future? In other words, do you create probabilistic forecasts? These are all ways of asking the same question, because they all mean the same thing.

  47. indianajones says

    How about in the sense of ‘expecting’ rather than ‘taking for granted’? Bait and Switch. Fer ferkin realsies?

  48. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, I’m not sure you read my previous post but I’ll post it here.

    No. At least not in a sense of taking it for granted. This is an example of faith. While it’s okay to use it, it doesn’t necessarily lead to certainty or probability about any proposition due to the New Riddle of Induction. Which is a problem for deduction.

  49. speedofsound says

    No. An axiom is the premise. The assumption is offered up to test. Some work some don’t. But even an axiom gets changed up once and while.

    What would it be like if you were absolutely certain of everything that will happen to you in the next month? And say one of those things is that you are going to be horribly crushed to death and beheaded by a city transit vehicle? You have solved the problem of induction and deduction right? But how is your month going to play out?

    Now keep in mind that you will ‘Know’ exactly where each of your smooshed neurons ends up on the pavement.

  50. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreo.
    I read your earlier posts. I feel like you didn’t read mine. Again: I don’t understand what it means “to use it [an expectation]”. That doesn’t make grammatical sense. I don’t understand what you are trying to say. How does one use an expectation?

    Also, by definition, “an expectation” is inherently probabilistic. To expect something means, at a minimum, that you think that it happening is more likely than not.

  51. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    And again, do you think it’s ok to hold expectations about the future? Do you think it’s ok to make forecasts about the future? Do you think that it’s ok to believe things are likely going to happen in the future? I don’t see any relevance difference in these phrasing. If you think that there are differences in these questions, please explain what you think those differences are.

  52. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, I don’t really like the idea of probability or expectations. This is because it’s never about actual certainty. Which is what I look for.

  53. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreo
    You’re still dodging. You still have not given a clear answer. Do you create, form, and hold expectations about the future? Do you create probabilistic forecasts about the future? Do you have any beliefs about the future? If there are differences in meaning between these questions, please explain the differences to me.

  54. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, I’m not sure what you mean by “create” with expectations. No, I don’t hold expectations about the future because I don’t think induction is trustworthy. I’ve also stated that I don’t like the idea of probability or expectations. I hold that one shouldn’t hold any beliefs about the future because they have no mechanism or tools by which they can determine what will happen or be representative of the future. In fact, one YouTuber had made a video in which he explained some of his frustrations with Aronra on his misunderstandings of the problem of induction and why he should be more skeptical of science. https://youtu.be/_302VE9ONkA

  55. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    No, I don’t hold expectations about the future

    Then I’m back to the original question that I asked in this thread: When you cross a busy street at a crosswalk that has an electronic sign with “walk” / “don’t walk”, do you typically wait for the “walk” sign to be illuminated before walking? And why? I typically wait for the “walk” sign to be illuminated, and that’s because I have the expectation that it’s less likely that I will get hit by a car by doing so. If you don’t have any expectations about the future, I don’t understand by what process you make the choice to wait for the “walk” sign to be illuminated. Please explain.

  56. indianajones says

    ‘it’s never about actual certainty. Which is what I look for.’

    Welcome to to our uncertain reality. Sorry about that.

  57. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, “When you cross a busy street at a crosswalk that has an electronic sign with “walk” / “don’t walk”, do you typically wait for the “walk” sign to be illuminated before walking? And why?”

    I do use them anytime I cross the streets, but I don’t depend on them because they don’t tell you anything about weather you’re going to be hit by oncoming traffic or not.

  58. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreoman
    You are still dodging.

    By what mental processes do you arrive at the decision to wait for the “walk” sign to be illuminated? In other words, why do you wait for the “walk” sign to be illuminated? This is not completely a habit. It’s not subconscious. It is often a conscious decision. Why do you do it?

  59. Wiggle Puppy says

    @ oreo 60:

    “I do use them anytime I cross the streets, but I don’t depend on them because they don’t tell you anything about weather you’re going to be hit by oncoming traffic or not.”

    More dodgy language. Can you just answer any question directly?

    Yes, crossing during the “walk” sign’s illumination doesn’t guarantee that you won’t be hit. But we can observe from prior experience that “walk” signs tend to correlate to a red light for oncoming traffic, because the traffic engineers who design these things are likely to correlate a “walk” sign with safety for pedestrians in question, because we have a general societal goal of keeping people safe, because we don’t like the pain that comes with being maimed by an oncoming car, because we have bodies that experience unpleasant feelings when we are physically hurt. We can also observe that drivers often tend to respect traffic rules, because not doing so will put drivers themselves in danger, and we also have police to enforce laws as well, and people don’t like being pulled over, having a ticket written to them, having to pay a fine, and having to appear in court. And yes, we don’t have an absolute guarantee that a driver won’t run a red light or otherwise break a traffic law, which is why a lot of people will also look both ways before crossing a street even when given a “walk” signal, although this is not an absolute. I cannot believe that I have to explain this.

    We live life in a probability-based world in which we are forced to make decisions based on inference, induction, and uncertainty. To do otherwise is to curl into a fetal position and give up on life. Months later, you are still obsessed with the idea of absolute certainty, and I am still at a loss for why.

    @ EL #61:

    “You are still dodging.”

    Um, yeah. He doesn’t know how to answer questions directly.

  60. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I know. As I said, I wanted to focus on this particular line of questioning for a while. I’ve been making some progress with him (ex: he says he doesn’t hold any expectations about the future at all), and so I’d like to try for a little more to see where this line of argument ends. IMO, it is the critical line of argument. In short, my line of argument is: If you don’t have any expectations about the future at all, then by what methods, processes, values, etc., do you make any behavioral decisions at all? Even saying something like “because it makes me happy” relies on the implicit expectation “I did it because I expected that it would make me happy”.

  61. Wiggle Puppy says

    Best of luck to you. I tried asking about a dozen times back in December and January how he, oreoman1987, goes about making everyday decisions in the absence of absolute certainty, and he kept saying things about the problems of induction and under-determination and such. He can’t answer questions directly.

  62. indianajones says

    It’s been too long since I re-read The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy, but didn’t the immortal Douglas Adams take a swing at this? Something about the ruler of the universe being uncertain about everything?

  63. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Wiggle Puppy
    Thanks for the well-wishing. I don’t have much hope for this, but I don’t think anyone has done something close enough to what I’m doing now, which is trying to get him to explain his decision-making process for a trivial decision, like waiting for the “walk” sign to be illuminated before crossing a busy street.

  64. oreoman1987 says

    Wiggle Puppy, EnlightenmentLiberal,

    I’m not sure how my answers weren’t clear and precise. My problem with Matt and most people in this chat have stated that they don’t have absolute certainty about anything. Whereas I don’t hold to that position since it’s contradictory. My other problem is is that none of you seem to be able to answer the problem of induction or underdetermination. It therefore shows that their confidence and beliefs are based on faith.

  65. oreoman1987 says

    Wiggle Puppy,

    “More dodgy language. Can you just answer any question directly?”

    How was my answer dodgy or not simple? Plus, I don’t hold that absolute certainty doesn’t exist. Matt and others in this chat do. Look at previous comments from others.

  66. Heretical Ryan says

    Oreo, I really hope you give a coherent answer to EL’s crossing the street question.

    Because i’m actually quite curious now. With your obsession about ABSOLUTE certainty of knowledge, how do you FUNCTION in the real world?

  67. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreo
    And you still have utterly failed to answer the simple question that I put to you in the first post that I addressed to you in this thread: What is your thought process that leads you to typically decide to wait until the “walk” sign is illuminated before crossing a busy street?

  68. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal, Heretical Ryan,

    I’m not sure how you guys didn’t understand my answers. Why would you guys be afraid of absolute certainty and knowledge?

  69. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreo
    You have not given an answer to that question. Please answer the question.

  70. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Also, based on the wording in the most recent post from Oreoman, I’m leaning again towards the tentative conclusion that Oreoman is just a Christian presup troll.

  71. Wiggle Puppy says

    @ oreo 68:

    “How was my answer dodgy or not simple?”

    Because the question had two parts: (1) “When you cross a busy street at a crosswalk that has an electronic sign with “walk” / “don’t walk”, do you typically wait for the “walk” sign to be illuminated before walking?” (2) “And why?”

    You sort of answered the first one, albeit in an ambiguous and unclear way, and didn’t come close to addressing the second. These are really simple questions and you are either unable or unwilling to discuss anything in an honest and straight-forward manner.

    @ EL:

    Good luck with this.

  72. oreoman1987 says

    Wiggle Puppy,
    “You sort of answered the first one, albeit in an ambiguous and unclear way, and didn’t come close to addressing the second. These are really simple questions and you are either unable or unwilling to discuss anything in an honest and straight-forward manner.“

    I explained why I use said street signs but don’t depend on them due to them not being able to tell you anything about what’s going to happen to you in the street. That is a simple answer.

  73. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    oh and EnlightenmentLiberal, I love your new avatar!

    Final Fantasy fans unite!

  74. Wiggle Puppy says

    “I do use them anytime I cross the streets”

    This does not answer a “why” question.

    You are deranged.

  75. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Let me clarify, even though I shouldn’t need to for anyone who isn’t a troll.

    I do use them anytime I cross the streets, […]

    This is an answer to the question “do you do it?”. This is not an answer to the question “why do you do it?”.

    […] but I don’t depend on them because they don’t tell you anything about weather you’re going to be hit by oncoming traffic or not.

    This is a denial to a possible answer to the “why?” question. By itself, it is not an answer to the question. In other words, you gave an example of what is not the answer to the “why?” question. By itself, that is not an answer to the “why?” question because there are plenty of other possible answers, and I don’t know which particular answer applies to you.

    Please answer the “why?” question. In particular, please answer the question “what goes through your mind as you decide to wait for the ‘walk’ sign to be illuminated before crossing a busy street?”.

  76. oreoman1987 says

    “Please answer the “why?” question. In particular, please answer the question “what goes through your mind as you decide to wait for the ‘walk’ sign to be illuminated before crossing a busy street?”.“

    I think it’s a proclivity to go by the street is to assume that oncoming traffic is coming or to obey street signs as a respect for public. I don’t depend on it though because I don’t view them as a reliable way of telling me what I ought to do or should do in this situation. Which is why you don’t have to think of it a certain way or have beliefs about it.

  77. Heretical Ryan says

    Why would you guys be afraid of absolute certainty and knowledge?

    We’re not afraid of those things. We’re rejecting your notion that anything short of total absolute certainty is blind faith.

  78. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I think it’s a proclivity to go by the street is to assume that oncoming traffic is coming or to obey street signs as a respect for public.

    So, you’re making an assumption about future events? I think that’s what you just wrote. I see “assume that [some thing will be true in the future]”. Didn’t you say earlier that you don’t make predictions / expectations / assumptions about future events? I don’t understand what you are saying. Do you or do you not make assumptions / predictions / forecasts / expectations / beliefs about future events? Please make up your mind, or please explain yourself more clearly.

  79. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal,

    “So, you’re making an assumption about future events?”

    No. It’s based on proclivities rather than beliefs. Especially when I don’t make expectations or predictions.

  80. oreoman1987 says

    Heretical Ryan,

    “We’re not afraid of those things. We’re rejecting your notion that anything short of total absolute certainty is blind faith.”

    If you don’t know something for certainty, then you don’t know and therefore are believing it by faith. Having confidence is by definition having faith.

  81. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    You said “no” to mean “no, I don’t make assumptions about the future”, but in the very next sentence, you have an implicit “yes” and you more or less state “yes, I make assumptions about the future”. I ask you again: You wrote this:

    I think it’s a proclivity to go by the street is to assume that oncoming traffic is coming or to obey street signs as a respect for public.

    The phrase:

    oncoming traffic is coming or to obey street signs as a respect for public.

    Refers to a particular event in the future.
    The broader phrase:

    to assume that oncoming traffic is coming or to obey street signs as a respect for public.

    is stating that you make an assumption that some particular event will happen at a particular point in the future.

    Do I have that right or wrong? Are you or are you not making an assumption about the truth of some thing in the future? Do you want to take back your previous answer that uses the word “assumes” or not?

  82. says

    So, it seems like we have someone claiming to have no expectations that anything about the future can be estimated based on any observations. That everything they experience is essentially equivalent to sensory white noise, no more informative to them than being totally random. And yet, they somehow manage to coordinate complex chains of tasks to produce communications to send out into the void of unknowable chaos to communicate with beings that according to their standards, they have no reason to expect to exist. And somehow, in this incomprehensible morass that they can extract no understanding of, many of their communications happen to be made as if in reply to the messages of others. I’d suspect some sort of continuous miracle with how incredible such an ongoing feat must be.
     
    If I could learn anything from my senses, I might speculate about whether some sort of brain lesion might be present, causing something along the lines of blindsight, where some parts of the brain are still able to process information, but the person isn’t consciously aware of it, even though they may be acting on the information they deny having.

  83. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Also, how did you come by this proclivity?

    Did this proclivity happen by chance?

    Did you choose to have this proclivity?

    Did you learn this proclivity where “learn” means the normal thing that happens when someone teaches you, which including learning when your mother tries to teach you something, or when a teacher in school tries to teach you something, or when you learn something without being taught it, etc.

    Suppose they change the law tomorrow so that drivers are given tickets if they drive over a crosswalk while the “don’t walk” sign is on, and they are instructed to drive over a crosswalk while the “walk” sign is on, e.g. the reverse of today’s situation. Would your proclivity change? How would it change? Would it change by what I would call a typical learning process, e.g. you become aware of the change in the law, and you become aware that drivers’s behavior is now the opposite of what it was before, and then you decide to change your proclivity? I assume I’m correct thus far. Why would you decide to change your proclivity? Presumably because you don’t want to get hit by a car. Now, at least, that answer seems like a non-sequitir? What does “waiting to cross the street until a certain sign becomes illuminated” have to do with “I don’t want to get hit by a car?”. How do you tie those two things together logically? The only way that I know how to tie them together is by invoking a learned assumption (re: expectation) about the future.

  84. Heretical Ryan says

    Oreo

    So in your world, there is either 100% certainty or 0% certainty. Nothing else. Correct?

  85. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal,
    I don’t know how I come to these proclivities. It may be based on experience or from reasoning and memory, but I don’t know. Of course I try not to get hit by oncoming traffic due to these proclivities. These aren’t based on predictions or expectations but by assumptions for the sake of living by induction. None of which requires belief.

  86. oreoman1987 says

    Heretical Ryan,

    So in your world, there is either 100% certainty or 0% certainty. Nothing else. Correct?

    Correct.

  87. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I don’t know how I come to these proclivities.

    I don’t believe you. I believe you are lying.

    Of course I try not to get hit by oncoming traffic due to these proclivities.

    This is nonsense. What you wrote is a logical non-sequitir by your own reasoning. By your own reasoning, there is nothing to tie together “waiting for the ‘walk’ sign to be illuminated” and “I don’t want to get hit by a car”. The only thing that can possibly tie together these two unrelated statements is a statement of the form “waiting for the ‘walk’ sign to be illuminated will reduce my chances of being hit by a car”.

    These aren’t based on predictions or expectations but by assumptions for the sake of living by induction.

    You are lying, or actually clinically insane. My example of “what if they change the law so that drivers drove while the ‘walk’ sign was on and stopped while the ‘don’t walk’ sign was on” is a conclusive thought experiment. We both know that in such a world, your “proclivity” would change as soon as you were informed about the change in the law and became confident that drivers were typically obeying the new law.

    I know this, because you’re not dead yet. If you were unable to learn such basic things then you would have already killed yourself by walking out into traffic, or something like that. That you are still alive is convincing evidence that you are lying.

  88. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Ok. I’m done with Oreoman.

    Mods, could you please ban this guy already? Post 92 in context is clear evidence of willful, dishonest trolling.

  89. Monocle Smile says

    Last time I asked Oreo why he freaks out about Islam if he has no expectation that Islam will cause any issues in the future.

    His answer was “Well, why not?”

    This is what we are dealing with. Ban this fuck.

    Also, I would not be surprised if Kafei’s assertion that the “mystical” topics come up naturally on the show was a blatant lie and he is in fact helping to orchestrate this traffic.

  90. oreoman1987 says

    EnlightenmentLiberal,

    You assert that you know things. So I’ll ask, what’s your foundation for reasoning and knowledge?

  91. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    For answering my questions, sure, I’ll answer that.

    Like 99.99%+ of people, my answer is: foundationalism, with a little bit of coherentism mixed in for constantly reevaluating the foundation. In other words, yes, I assume some things on faith. I assume and faith have in something like a principle of uniformity, and a generalized copernican principle e.g. a principle of mediocrity, plus a dozen or so other axioms that I take on faith, with a little bit of circular reasoning too e.g. some amount of coherentism. Also, a naive form of induction can be refined into a sophisticated form of Bayesian induction, and that is the solution to many of the problems that were raised in the one video that I commented on above in this thread.

    I don’t claim absolute certainty. I use the words “to know” and “knowledge”, like most people, to simply mean “a claim for which I have very high confidence that it’s true”, and I use the words “to believe” and “belief” like most people, to simply mean “an emotional state of having high confidence that a particular claim is true”. Like many people, I think that I don’t have absolute confidence in any of my beliefs or knowledge claims.

    In other words, I subscribe to a position which has basically been the widely held consensus position among philosophers for thousands of years.

  92. Ian Butler says

    Failure to ban the trolls means effectively banning everyone that would like to have an actual conversation, including me. I’ll check in from time to time, but as soon as I see oreoman or kafei I will move on to more productive activities, such as banging my head against the wall.

  93. StonedRanger says

    Come on you guys, you are just frustrated because they are not giving you the repsonses you want. They arent trolls or liars. Fucking bullshit. If the mods cant see the forest for the trees, then Im kind of done with this. How many weeks of this bullshit are we expected to endure? Yo mods, why dont you come and engage with kafei and oreoman if thats all this is about? I really came to like coming here, watching the show and then seeing what people have to say. But this bullshit where all we are getting is “If you dont see things my way then you are just wrong. No matter what I say Im correct even if all the evidence shows otherwise.” There is no conversation to be had here anymore in the last couple of months. Mods, please get off your asses and moderate this forum. You got rid of one giant asshole troll, how about relieving us from the other two?

  94. t90bb says

    Oreo was exposed in the last thread he participated in….

    1. He misquotes Matt. Oreo says Matt makes claims of certainty. Matt goes to great pains to repeat that he acknowledges he knows nothing for absolutely certain. He acknowledges solipsism all the time….

    2. Oreo plays word games…..he makes the exact same arguments as presuppers like “if you are not absolutely certain about anything then you cant know anything” (very sye TB ish, hmm).

    3. Finally…Oreo can cry all he wants about our inability to establish absolute certainty (his and ours)….but that’s the way it is until it changes. BOO fkin HOO Oreo. WE have learned to adapt and make what appear to be the right choices regardless of the lack of absolute certainty. I do it and YOU do it. You can never have absolute certainty that you wont be hit by a vehicle when you cross a street. BUT YOU CROSS IT based on what appears to be the best info available (traffic aids, your vision, confirmation by others).

    OREO///I am sorry you need to misrepresent Matt to go on these foolish rants. Cant you find someone that DOES claim absolute certainty and knowledge is possible??? Then you might have a point. Go find some people that claim for absolute certainty a God does not exist. You wont find many (any?) on this blog. Then your babble might be purposeful.

    Everyone here agrees except you that there are degrees of confidence…(or so you claim to deny degrees of confidence)….but as was pointed out dozens of times in the earlier thread, you live your life just like the rest of us by assessing your own degrees of confidence before acting….

    NOW please stop whining like a fucking sissy. I have learned to accept and deal with the risks of lacking absolute certainty, and I have managed a life I love and enjoy. Grow the fuck up. Stop acting pathetic.

  95. Heretical Ryan says

    NOW please stop whining like a fucking sissy. I have learned to accept and deal with the risks of lacking absolute certainty, and I have managed a life I love and enjoy. Grow the fuck up. Stop acting pathetic.

    i think you’re expecting too much from oreo

  96. says

    @Monocle Smile

    Also, I would not be surprised if Kafei’s assertion that the “mystical” topics come up naturally on the show was a blatant lie and he is in fact helping to orchestrate this traffic.

    Did you watch the episode? I never said “mystical topics,” particularly, I meant these topics, as the topics I’ve spoken on in general do, indeed, naturally come up on the show. We were discussing panpsychism in the last thread, then Thomas from Georgia calls in to express a panpsychist view where consciousness has always existed. Torrey from Maryland called in speaking about dreams and altered states of consciousness. Saad called in and spoke on Sufism which is the Islamic form of mysticism. Saad made an interesting point which addresses something Matt brought up earlier with Torrey, Matt told Torrey about a dream a Hindu might have of Ganesh. Saad spoke about studying comparative religion and recognizing a God that sends revelation to prophets, but he was confused about prophets having different visions, for instance, a Christian might see Jesus on the cross, Saad said he spoke to sheiks who see Muhammad in their visions, that whatever you strongly believe in, you’re always going to be thinking about it. Then, Matt replied with a triumphant, “Yes!” Well, here’s the thing that these guys, the caller, the hosts, etc. do not understand about these mystical experiences. First of all, one important point to make is that these mystical experiences are not supernatural in this sense of defying the laws of physics. The second important point to make in regards to these mystical experiences is that they occur on a spectrum, and this distinction even made by the professionals between the visionary/archetypal experience and the unitive mystical experience. In the visionary/archetypal experience, it is, in fact, commonplace that you will see imagery that is pertinent to your life and your beliefs, etc. because these mystical experiences directly address the individual. These visionary experiences can happen just prior to or right after the height of the experience which is the unitive mystical state of consciousness or “complete” mystical experience, and they can involve visions of the crucified Christ or Muhammad or they don’t even have to be associated with religions, some people see their dead parents or people that they’ve lost that were important in their lives, in my own experience I saw Bill Hicks because I wasn’t necessarily very religious when I first had this experience for myself, and perhaps he was an important figure in my life at the time. The “complete” or unitive mystical experience occurs at the height, and there’s no longer a subject-object relationship, there’s no mind’s eye witnessing imagery anymore, being inspired by something, beholding something, in the unitive mystical experience the impression is of a pure and complete unity, of all time collapsing into the moment, etc., and so reading a description of a mystic who’s attempting to describe a perception outside of space of time might sound like he’s writing about something “supernatural,” but he’s not. He’s writing about a potential in each one of our consciousness.

  97. buddyward says

    I agree with many of the people here that both Kafei and Oreoman should be banned. Kafei, more so because he lies about his claims. Oreoman is obviously engaging in equivocation when it comes to the word faith. He is either 100% certain or 0% certain, anything in between is just proclivity, meaning he has no rational reason for doing that things that he does or say most of the time, thus making him irrational most of the time. I do not think that I am interested in having a discussion with an irrational person.

  98. buddyward says

    Notice how Kafei is now trying to get back to discussing mystical experiences even though the show or anyone in this thread asked for it. This liar needs to be banned.

  99. says

    @buddyward I’ve not lied once here about any claims. That’s a false accusation. You’re the one that couldn’t grasp that the CME and Tabor light are synonymous terms referencing the same phenomenon in consciousness.

  100. says

    @buddyward Saad brought up Sufism which is the form of mysticism found in Islam. The topics are relevant to the show, if you watched it at all. Matt spoke about how you cannot rule out psychedelic visions as the source of Biblical scripture and you’re accusing me of trolling? I thought this was a freethoughtblogs, not intolerantatheistblogs.

  101. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    You lied when you said you have evidence that supports your claim. You do not. You disappeared when you are being questioned about the evidence that you presented. When pressed for evidence you vanish.

    If you think that I am falsely accusing you then please report me to the mods.

  102. says

    @buddyward

    You lied when you said you have evidence that supports your claim. You do not. You disappeared when you are being questioned about the evidence that you presented. When pressed for evidence you vanish.

    Not true. I’ve presented all the research I was told the cite with the exception of the study involving the atheists at Johns Hopkins, because that one is getting ready to be published towards the end of the month.

    If you think that I am falsely accusing you then please report me to the mods.

    I’m not going to report anyone here. I’ll call you out on your false accusations, but that’s about it.

  103. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    Just because a specific sect of Islam was mentioned in the show does not mean that your pet topic is relevant. What Matt and Saad is discussing at that point is whether or not the claims are valid while they are having visions. This is totally different from whether or not your stupid CME supports PP. You are just trying to hijack this thread just as you tried in any other threads.

  104. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    Not true. I’ve presented all the research I was told the cite with the exception of the study involving the atheists at Johns Hopkins, because that one is getting ready to be published towards the end of the month.

    I read the research and they do not even mention any of your claim. You lied about having your claims be supported in those research. Tell me again which one of these papers mentions Tabor light and how it was measured? Which one of those papers proved that god exist? Which one of those papers made a comparison between god and Tabor light to conclude that they are one and the same?

  105. says

    @buddyward

    Just because a specific sect of Islam was mentioned in the show does not mean that your pet topic is relevant.

    Sufism is not necessarily a sect, that’s a common misconception, it’s a method that’s practiced within various sects of Islam, it is the inward, mystical dimension of Islam.

    What Matt and Saad is discussing at that point is whether or not the claims are valid while they are having visions.

    Yes, and this is precisely what I address with my post at #103. They didn’t think the visions all could be valid, because each prophet had a different vision. That’s disregarding the fact that these type of visions can vary in such a way in the so-called visionary/archetypal experiences as opposed to the unitive mystical experiences mentioned in the research. If Matt and the caller understood this point, they wouldn’t be having that conversation… That was my point.

    This is totally different from whether or not your stupid CME supports PP. You are just trying to hijack this thread just as you tried in any other threads.

    No, I’m not trying to hijack anything. I’m making very relevant points to the most recent TAE show. Do you really have issue that there’s science behind what the callers and Matt were talking about, science that if they properly understood, they wouldn’t run into these confusions they held regarding these topics? Matt said himself that you cannot rule out the possibility that the bible was written by magic mushroom-eating Christians which reminds me of Jerry Brown’s work which is also relevant to the discussion.

  106. buddyward says

    Yes, and this is precisely what I address with my post at #103. They didn’t think the visions all could be valid, because each prophet had a different vision. That’s disregarding the fact that these type of visions can vary in such a way in the so-called visionary/archetypal experiences as opposed to the unitive mystical experiences mentioned in the research. If Matt and the caller understood this point, they wouldn’t be having that conversation… That was my point.

    How the fuck are they supposed to know what to talk about if neither one of the bring up a point and address it? It does not matter what kind of vision it was. If it cannot be validated it cannot be considered to be true.

  107. says

    @buddyward

    I read the research and they do not even mention any of your claim. You lied about having your claims be supported in those research.

    I didn’t lie about anything. I don’t know why you insist on making false accusations.

    Tell me again which one of these papers mentions Tabor light and how it was measured?

    The Tabor light and the CME are the same phenomenon, to the degree you measure the CME, you are gauging the Tabor light, likewise the studies on “form constants.” Once again, one and the same phenomenon. I don’t know why you’re having so much trouble grasping this.

    Which one of those papers proved that god exist? Which one of those papers made a comparison between god and Tabor light to conclude that they are one and the same?

    I think you’re hung up on this word God. I actually got the opportunity last night to be invited on a livestream with Darth Dawkins present, and what I attempted to do was steel man Darth Dawkins’ argument, and I made this point that if you believe in evolution, then the word “God” hasn’t always existed forever, because language only developed in the latter portion of our evolution. So, this sense of the ultimate that is intuited in the mystical experience has taken on many names throughout history, like Brahman, nirvana, “The One” in Neoplatonism, etc. long before people started uttering the word “God.” So, what this research does to address the divine in all the major religions is emphasize the Perennial philosophy, a view that sees this divine unity glimpsed in the CME at the very heart of all the major religions, each of the major religions has a word that points to this highly desired and valued state of spiritual awareness, and “God” is more properly understood in this context.

    How the fuck are they supposed to know what to talk about if neither one of the bring up a point and address it? It does not matter what kind of vision it was. If it cannot be validated it cannot be considered to be true.

    It’s validated in the sciences as the psychodynamics that happen as what these professionals identify as visionary/archetypal experiences.

  108. Wiggle Puppy says

    This is what, like, week 7 of yammering about CMEs and Johns Hopkins?

    Mods, if this is what you want this blog to turn into, then okay. There’s no reason to direct callers to the blog, because it will be immediately drowned out.

  109. says

    @Wiggle Puppy

    This is what, like, week 7 of yammering about CMEs and Johns Hopkins?

    Mods, if this is what you want this blog to turn into, then okay. There’s no reason to direct callers to the blog, because it will be immediately drowned out.

    Because science relative to these visionary states that were discussed in the show yesterday are relevant. It’s a topic that’s going to continue to haunt these threads and TAE until it’s properly addressed. I don’t think you get it, even if I’m banned due to the social outcry of intolerant atheists, these topics are going to come up despite my absence.

  110. buddyward says

    I didn’t lie about anything. I don’t know why you insist on making false accusations.

    The Tabor light and the CME are the same phenomenon, to the degree you measure the CME, you are gauging the Tabor light, likewise the studies on “form constants.” Once again, one and the same phenomenon. I don’t know why you’re having so much trouble grasping this.

    You said that you have peer reviewed published papers that measured Tabor light. The papers you presented did not mention Tabor light. You are now claiming that CME and Tabor light are the same and yet the papers still did not mention Tabor light and how it was measured. You are a liar.

    I think you’re hung up on this word God. I actually got the opportunity last night to be invited on a livestream with Darth Dawkins present, and what I attempted to do was steel man Darth Dawkins’ argument, and I made this point that if you believe in evolution, then the word “God” hasn’t always existed forever, because language only developed in the latter portion of our evolution. So, this sense of the ultimate that is intuited in the mystical experience has taken on many names throughout history, like Brahman, nirvana, “The One” in Neoplatonism, etc. long before people started uttering the word “God.” So, what this research does to address the divine in all the major religions is emphasize the Perennial philosophy, a view that sees this divine unity glimpsed in the CME at the very heart of all the major religions, each of the major religions has a word that points to this highly desired and valued state of spiritual awareness, and “God” is more properly understood in this context.

    I do not give a shit what you did last night, I care about what your peer reviewed published paper can prove. None of them says what you claim. You are not even disputing that at this point and now you are trying to redirect the conversation somewhere else, you dishonest liar.

    It’s validated in the sciences as the psychodynamics that happen as what these professionals identify as visionary/archetypal experiences.

    Show evidence that the science psychodynamics can validate that what was in the vision is true. I am not playing word games here, I am not asking whether or not the subject had a vision but whatever is seen in the vision is true.

  111. says

    @Buddyward

    You said that you have peer reviewed published papers that measured Tabor light. The papers you presented did not mention Tabor light. You are now claiming that CME and Tabor light are the same and yet the papers still did not mention Tabor light and how it was measured. You are a liar.

    It doesn’t have to mention Tabor light. The professionals have spoken on how they find these states to be indistinguishable from those mystical states described in the various religions, including the Beatific vision which is synonymous with the Tabor light. Just as they don’t have to mention Moksha, they don’t have to mention each of the words used in religion to described in these experiences. Bill Richards does mention samadhi, but he could have just easily said moksha which is another term for enlightenment in Hinduism, just as he could’ve easily said the Tabor light in lieu of the Beatific vision, they’re one and the same thing. So, once again, I’ve not lied about anything. You simply continue to misconstrue what I say, and because you can’t grasp it, you assume it’s a lie.

    I do not give a shit what you did last night, I care about what your peer reviewed published paper can prove. None of them says what you claim. You are not even disputing that at this point and now you are trying to redirect the conversation somewhere else, you dishonest liar.

    The only liar here is yourself. You accuse others who do not lie of lying.

    It’s validated in the sciences as the psychodynamics that happen as what these professionals identify as visionary/archetypal experiences.

    Show evidence that the science psychodynamics can validate that what was in the vision is true. I am not playing word games here, I am not asking whether or not the subject had a vision but whatever is seen in the vision is true.

    If you’re asking whether the visionary/archetypal visions are “true,” I think that’s sort of the wrong thing to ask. A woman in the audience of Bill Richards’ lecture asked this question of Richards relative to what she was alluding to as a “true hallucination.” The visionary state will depict mental imagery that will addresses the individual, but if you’re asking if it’s real in the sense of something you’re actually seeing? Of course not, but that’s missing the point, just as the woman in the audience was confused about these visionary states as well. I’ve also spoken about the noetic quality of the mystical experience which is what validates the experience for the individual.

  112. Heretical Ryan says

    It’s a topic that’s going to continue to haunt these threads and TAE until it’s properly addressed.

    The only thing haunting these threads with CME related topics is you.

    even if I’m banned due to the social outcry of intolerant atheists, these topics are going to come up despite my absence.

    i’m pretty sure that if you’re banned then the constant flood of CME posts will stop.

  113. buddyward says

    It doesn’t have to mention Tabor light. The professionals have spoken on how they find these states to be indistinguishable from those mystical states described in the various religions, including the Beatific vision which is synonymous with the Tabor light. Just as they don’t have to mention Moksha, they don’t have to mention each of the words used in religion to described in these experiences. Bill Richards does mention samadhi, but he could have just easily said moksha which is another term for enlightenment in Hinduism, just as he could’ve easily said the Tabor light in lieu of the Beatific vision, they’re one and the same thing. So, once again, I’ve not lied about anything. You simply continue to misconstrue what I say, and because you can’t grasp it, you assume it’s a lie.

    Yes it does have to mention Tabor light. This is like saying measuring the speed of light does not have to mention light. It is a lie if you are saying that you have evidence for your claim and you present the contrary. I do not give a shit about anything else but what your papers can prove. By far your papers have not proven what you claimed.

    The only liar here is yourself. You accuse others who do not lie of lying.

    It is easy to show that I am wrong. Present a peer reviewed published paper that supports your claim and I will concede. If you cannot do that then you are a liar.

    If you’re asking whether the visionary/archetypal visions are “true,” I think that’s sort of the wrong thing to ask. A woman in the audience of Bill Richards’ lecture asked this question of Richards relative to what she was alluding to as a “true hallucination.” The visionary state will depict mental imagery that will addresses the individual, but if you’re asking if it’s real in the sense of something you’re actually seeing? Of course not, but that’s missing the point, just as the woman in the audience was confused about these visionary states as well. I’ve also spoken about the noetic quality of the mystical experience which is what validates the experience for the individual.

    I already told you that is not what I am asking and you are purposefully trying to address the point that I said I was not asking. If I have a vision of a pink elephant does that mean that pink elephant exist in reality? If you say yes, then show me evidence how that was proven. If you say no, then the field of science that you say is able to validate the visions does not validate what is in the vision to be true.

  114. t90bb says

    kafei asserts he has proof for god and wants to get the message out via his own show….THE THEIST EXPERIENCE…..when pressed he insists hes working on it, lol.

    And yet hes got enough time to waste bullshitting himself and others on this and other blogs….

    If I had proof God exists I would not spend time on a blog……that maybe a few hundred spend time on….

    Maybe Kafei knows deep down hes got nothing?? Certainly seems like it.

  115. t90bb says

    Oreo was exposed in the last thread he participated in….

    1. He misquotes Matt. Oreo says Matt makes claims of certainty. Matt goes to great pains to repeat that he acknowledges he knows nothing for absolutely certain. He acknowledges solipsism all the time….

    2. Oreo plays word games…..he makes the exact same arguments as presuppers like “if you are not absolutely certain about anything then you cant know anything” (very sye TB ish, hmm).

    3. Finally…Oreo can cry all he wants about our inability to establish absolute certainty (his and ours)….but that’s the way it is until it changes. BOO fkin HOO Oreo. WE have learned to adapt and make what appear to be the right choices regardless of the lack of absolute certainty. I do it and YOU do it. You can never have absolute certainty that you wont be hit by a vehicle when you cross a street. BUT YOU CROSS IT based on what appears to be the best info available (traffic aids, your vision, confirmation by others).

    OREO///I am sorry you need to misrepresent Matt to go on these foolish rants. Cant you find someone that DOES claim absolute certainty and knowledge is possible??? Then you might have a point. Go find some people that claim for absolute certainty a God does not exist. You wont find many (any?) on this blog. Then your babble might be purposeful.
    Everyone here agrees except you that there are degrees of confidence…(or so you claim to deny degrees of confidence)….but as was pointed out dozens of times in the earlier thread, you live your life just like the rest of us by assessing your own degrees of confidence before acting….

    NOW please stop whining like a fucking sissy. I have learned to accept and deal with the risks of lacking absolute certainty, and I have managed a life I love and enjoy. Grow the fuck up. Stop acting pathetic.

  116. t90bb says

    96…MS
    Last time I asked Oreo why he freaks out about Islam if he has no expectation that Islam will cause any issues in the future.
    His answer was “Well, why not?”

    You have utterly destroyed OREOs position MS. Thank you…

    Oreo insists he cannot know anything…and that belief and confidence is worthless since we don’t know anything for certain…..but he pisses and moans about the muslims and the FUTURE threats of Islam……..LOLOLOLOO OMFG what a hypocrite. This dude is such a sissy,,,,,,crying over lacking absolute certainty but using faith and confidence when it suits his argumentation. What a sissy.

  117. paxoll says

    Kafei-
    No, you are not teaching science, you are PREACHING unscientific conclusions of really crappy scientific experiments. You have not demonstrated a CME is anything other than a hallucination affecting all our senses and are dishonestly refusing to admit this because it will unravel your narrative. Subjective experiences written by people hundreds or thousands of years ago is not evidence that the religion followed by that person or created by that person was caused by a hallucination they experienced. It is a speculation with very weak evidence of similarities in their stories. You have NO scientific evidence that people having hallucinations are taped into some universal consciousness. ALL you have a small bit of scientific evidence that hallucinations can help people make long lasting changes to their mental states. THAT IS IT, nothing more.
     

    Oreo-
    You do not have proclivities, you have fucken beliefs that you act upon. ALL actions, except reflexes that are not initiated in the brain, are based on beliefs. Beliefs are formed rationally or irrationally, and the fact that you are living and interacting is evidence that you use the exact same inductive and deductive reasoning as everyone else to come to your beliefs. Induction and deduction BOTH require the same axioms. They both require a consistent external reality, one simply produces necessary truths when you accept the axioms while the other produces most likely truths. Take your bullshit word games and go somewhere else.

  118. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    BTW you said that Tabor light and God are one and the same. You also said that Tabor light and CME are the same phenomenom. So by deduction, CME and God are the same. That is just pure bullshit because the published paper never said that, liar.

  119. says

    @buddyward

    Yes it does have to mention Tabor light. This is like saying measuring the speed of light does not have to mention light. It is a lie if you are saying that you have evidence for your claim and you present the contrary. I do not give a shit about anything else but what your papers can prove. By far your papers have not proven what you claimed.

    What I meant is that they don’t have to mention every single term referencing this divine vision in Christianity. They already equated the CME with the Beatific vision. If you study religion at all, then you know that the Beatific vision is synonymous with the Tabor light, so Bill Richards, in that lecture I linked, could have very easily replaced Beatific vision with Tabor light, and you’d have the exact same thing. I don’t believe these professionals literally have to list every single term in religious scripture that references transcendental states of consciousness. That’s not necessary.

    It is easy to show that I am wrong. Present a peer reviewed published paper that supports your claim and I will concede. If you cannot do that then you are a liar.

    I’ve done that. I’ve already said that to any degree that they’re studying the content of the CME, they are essentially studying the phenomenon of the Tabor light, they’re one and the same thing, and I’ve already cited the research relative to all of this.

    I already told you that is not what I am asking and you are purposefully trying to address the point that I said I was not asking. If I have a vision of a pink elephant does that mean that pink elephant exist in reality? If you say yes, then show me evidence how that was proven. If you say no, then the field of science that you say is able to validate the visions does not validate what is in the vision to be true.

    Yes, that’s right, these visions of Muhammad or Christ or Ganesh aren’t true in the sense that people literally see these things with their naked eye, these are vivid visions seen in the mind’s eye that are typical of the visionary/archetypal states of consciousness. However, that is not the CME. The CME is the unitive mystical state of consciousness which has nothing to do with the personal history of the individual, it’s rather a universal phenomenon in consciousness also popularly referred to as “ego death” in psychology.

    @Heretical Ryan

    The only thing haunting these threads with CME related topics is you.

    Well, I didn’t mean specifically CMEs, but these topics in general of altered states, psychedelics, panpsychism, mysticism, etc. as per Nathan’s call a few weeks back.

    i’m pretty sure that if you’re banned then the constant flood of CME posts will stop.

    Yeah, and people will remain confused about these topics, but they will nevertheless continue to pop up here in various forms as per mentioned above.

    @t90bb

    If I had proof God exists I would not spend time on a blog……that maybe a few hundred spend time on….

    Maybe Kafei knows deep down hes got nothing?? Certainly seems like it.

    I am thinking of a way to do TTE, but in the meantime, I have been poppin’ up in livestreams here and there.

  120. says

    @paxoll

    You have NO scientific evidence that people having hallucinations are taped into some universal consciousness.

    I never said nor do the scientists claim they’re tapping into a universal consciousness. Rather what they’re saying is that they’re able to elicit a state of consciousness which is virtually identical in all of their volunteers, it’s more accurately a universal phenomenon in consciousness.

    ALL you have a small bit of scientific evidence that hallucinations can help people make long lasting changes to their mental states. THAT IS IT, nothing more.

    It’s not simply that. Sure, these visions are beneficial, but they’ve always been regarded as so, even in the major religions. In Christianity, Theoria or the Tabor light or what’s also called the Beatific vision (direct vision of God) has always been regarded as an experience that is beneficial to one’s mental and spiritual health, so it’s no surprise that the science is reflecting what mystics had always known. However, they’re not simply and solely pointing to its benefits, but the fact that these experiences are, indeed, in accordance with the Perennial philosophy. That’s where they’ve gone further than simply emphasizing the benefits.

  121. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    What I meant is that they don’t have to mention every single term referencing this divine vision in Christianity. They already equated the CME with the Beatific vision. If you study religion at all, then you know that the Beatific vision is synonymous with the Tabor light, so Bill Richards, in that lecture I linked, could have very easily replaced Beatific vision with Tabor light, and you’d have the exact same thing. I don’t believe these professionals literally have to list every single term in religious scripture that references transcendental states of consciousness. That’s not necessary.

    Paper have to at least mention it once, specially if they measured it. Did the research paper mention Beatific vision being measured? Did it say that Beatific vision is the same as Tabor light? Did it say that Beatific vision, Tabor light and God is the same? You are trying to move the goal post here. Either Tabor light was measured like you said or it was not. Which one is it?

    I’ve done that. I’ve already said that to any degree that they’re studying the content of the CME, they are essentially studying the phenomenon of the Tabor light, they’re one and the same thing, and I’ve already cited the research relative to all of this.

    Nope presenting papers that does not even mention your claim is not evidence. You are a liar.

    Yes, that’s right, these visions of Muhammad or Christ or Ganesh aren’t true in the sense that people literally see these things with their naked eye, these are vivid visions seen in the mind’s eye that are typical of the visionary/archetypal states of consciousness. However, that is not the CME. The CME is the unitive mystical state of consciousness which has nothing to do with the personal history of the individual, it’s rather a universal phenomenon in consciousness also popularly referred to as “ego death” in psychology.

    Yet another attempt to smuggle CME into the conversation. Your claim that the visions were validated by psychodynamics is also a lie.

  122. says

    @buddyward It was mentioned indirectly when they equated the CME to the Beatific vision, like I said, Bill Richards could’ve just as easily said the Tabor light. If you studied religion at all, you’d realize these are, indeed, synonymous terms, the Beatific vision, Theoria, the Tabor light, the Cloud of Unknowing, etc. are all various ways of describing one and the same thing.

  123. Heretical Ryan says

    Kafei, i’m sure topics related to hallucinations and mysticism will come up from time to time.

    And they will be addressed.

    My point was that if you’re banned our message board will no longer be FLOODED with HUNDREDS of lengthy and obnoxious posts on this subject

  124. Wiggle Puppy says

    @ goofy #117:

    “Because science relative to these visionary states that were discussed in the show yesterday are relevant.”

    I’m fairly certain that Saad wasn’t talking about psilocybin.

  125. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    It was mentioned indirectly when they equated the CME to the Beatific vision,

    Bullshit!!! Why mention it indirectly when you can say it directly to avoid confusion? Research papers are designed to be specific and avoid confusion. You are once again lying.

    like I said, Bill Richards could’ve just as easily said the Tabor light.

    Should’ve, would’ve, could’ve. You are now trying to project your own fallacious reasoning on another person. The reality is that he did not.

    If you studied religion at all, you’d realize these are, indeed, synonymous terms, the Beatific vision, Theoria, the Tabor light, the Cloud of Unknowing, etc. are all various ways of describing one and the same thing.

    Who gives a shit, we are talking about what you and your papers can prove. Studying religion does not give you the skills to evaluate scientific peer reviewed papers. Religion teaches you to believe claims with no evidence which is what you are doing right now and what you want us to do.

  126. t90bb says

    kafei….your still thinking on how to do the theist experience?? after all this time? lol….cant you take some acid and figure it out with your divine being of perennial shitology??

  127. buddyward says

    Looks like Kafei decided to vanish once again after not being able to demonstrate how his “evidence” supports his claim.

  128. Skye Eldrich says

    If anyone knows how to get a hold of Tracy or John Iacoletti, now would be a good time. I think we have more than enough evidence to prove these guys are arguing in bad faith and disrupting the blog; and therefore should be removed. I know Matt and Don don’t frequent the blog, so the others are probably our best option.

  129. t90bb says

    I sure wouldn’t mind kafei and oreo being shown the door….even though they are both low hanging fruit at this point imho

  130. says

    @buddyward

    Looks like Kafei decided to vanish once again after not being able to demonstrate how his “evidence” supports his claim.

    I’ve already provided you with the evidence I’ve cited. And I explained that the Beatific vision is one and the same with Theoria or the Tabor light or what these professionals refer to as the CME. All these are various ways of referencing the same phenomenon in consciousness. I’ve explained this multiple times. I didn’t think I’d have to bother explaining it once more, but apparently you haven’t grasped this fact. And I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s still not understood by your next post.

  131. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Again, I for one like the idea of being a mostly open space with very little moderation. I’m pretty close to being a freeze peach nut without actually being one.

    I would also like to advocate for using something like the Wikipedia approach to banning: Most offenders would benefit from a week or a month ban instead of jumping straight to a permanent ban. Repeat offenders can be given permanent bans.

    However, Kafei and Oreoman need to go.

    PS: I understand that I am not in a position to tell the AXP how to run their place. These are, at best, polite suggestions and requests, which the AXP people are entirely within their prerogative to ignore.

  132. buddyward says

    I’ve already provided you with the evidence I’ve cited. And I explained that the Beatific vision is one and the same with Theoria or the Tabor light or what these professionals refer to as the CME. All these are various ways of referencing the same phenomenon in consciousness. I’ve explained this multiple times. I didn’t think I’d have to bother explaining it once more, but apparently you haven’t grasped this fact. And I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s still not understood by your next post.

    No, you have not. Presenting papers that does not support your claim does not count as evidence. If any of those papers say what you claim they say you would have no problems presenting which of those papers contain them as well as where in the paper. Why have you not done that? Is it because none of those papers support your claim?

  133. says

    @buddyward

    No, you have not. Presenting papers that does not support your claim does not count as evidence. If any of those papers say what you claim they say you would have no problems presenting which of those papers contain them as well as where in the paper. Why have you not done that? Is it because none of those papers support your claim?

    Again, I’ve presented the papers, and they do support what I’ve said because I’m not saying anything other than what’s been established by this research. So, am I surprised that you’d miss the point once again? No.

  134. AtheistNotAgnostic says

    @EL #140
    I agree, I’d prefer to give people some space to reflect on why they were temp banned before we go perma ban, but I’m perfectly fine jumping right to perma ban for oreo and Jimmy. Your pointed questioning in this thread, plus MS’s on the last thread clearly exposed oreo as stone-cold troll. I also think we’ve heard enough of Kafei’s preaching. The guy’s everywhere on atheist youtube so if anyone wanted to seek him out they could. No reason to allow him to smear his shit all over every thread, especially since it drives away other contributors. If there was a way to limit him to one contaminated thread I’d support that because he actually believes what he preaches but since that’s not possible (I think) on this platform, I’m on board with booting him.

  135. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To AtheistNotAgnostic
    The AXP team could dedicate a thread for Kafei, and even sticky it. That’s entirely possible. However, getting him to stay in that thread might be more difficult. I’m not sure what auto-moderation tools they have. It might be nice to automatically move all of his new posts into that new containment thread. Or something like that. I don’t know.

  136. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    The problem is is that Matt Dillahunty saying he’s not certain of anything is also an appeal to absolute certainty. And by saying he doesn’t claim to know anything is also a knowledge claim.

    His positions are therefore contradictory.

  137. says

    Jesus Actual Christ. Every time I duck in to one of these open threads to see what discussions the show might’ve prompted, I get a rerun of the Kafei show with its endless giant posts of
    perennial waffling, and this time with Oreo’s obtuse pseudo presup nonsense as a bonus.

    Ban these people. Repetition, repetition, repetition, ignoring and dodging questions, derailing threads, repetition. All contributing to a shitty atmosphere that repels lurkers like me.

    Come on mods – imagine what conversations could be had here without this brand of obtuse trolling.

  138. AtheistNotAgnostic says

    @EL #145
    No way he’d stick in that one thread if he could move to others. The only way that might work is if he was perma-banned instantly if he was found in another (new) thread, but without auto tools no way this could be implemented on this blog. If someone wants to resurrect a dead one to talk to him be my guest, but it’s absurd that he takes over the conversation every week.

  139. says

    Case in point: Oreo @ comment 146

    “The problem is is that Matt Dillahunty saying he’s not certain of anything is also an appeal to absolute certainty. And by saying he doesn’t claim to know anything is also a knowledge claim.
    His positions are therefore contradictory.”

    No, it isn’t. Being not absolutely certain is the opposite of absolute certainty. Words have meanings. FFS.

    And btw Matt does claim to know things, just not absolutely – he has described knowledge, repeatedly, as a high level of confidence in a belief, not as absolute certainty that it’s true.

    The fact that you operate under some misguided notion that knowledge is binary and absolute doesn’t give you any ammunition whatsoever against Matt or anyone else who’s thought about this for more than two minutes.

  140. says

    Oreo:

    Not everyone has the *same* presuppositions. So stop trying to project your absolutist binary foolishness onto people who have made it very clear that they don’t share them.

  141. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    The problem is is that Matt Dillahunty saying he’s not certain of anything is also an appeal to absolute certainty.

    No, it’s not. I can say “I strongly suspect that I’m not absolutely certain of anything”. That is not a statement of absolute certainty. That is a statement of confidence, but not absolute confidence, of certainty, but not absolute certainty, just like any other claim that he might make. There’s nothing contradictory here. I see what game you are trying to play. What I don’t yet understand is what are your underlying motivations. Are you just a Christian presup? Are you just an (atheist) troll? Maybe someone who got mad because those evil SJWs at the AXP said something you didn’t like, like saying that some criticism of Islam is Islamaphobia and bigotry against Muslims is a real thing that we should be concerned about?

  142. oreoman1987 says

    “No, it isn’t. Being not absolutely certain is the opposite of absolute certainty. Words have meanings. FFS.”

    Not according to Matt Dillahunty in his debate with Sye. Go watch for yourself.

  143. oreoman1987 says

    “No, it’s not. I can say “I strongly suspect that I’m not absolutely certain of anything”. That is not a statement of absolute certainty. That is a statement of confidence, but not absolute confidence, of certainty, but not absolute certainty, just like any other claim that he might make.”

    This is also a knowledge claim and an appeal to absolute certainty. Confidence is by definition faith.

  144. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Oreoman
    I have watched it. I don’t recall him saying anything to that effect. Maybe he did, but then he would have been in error. Timestamp please?

    Also, Matt Dillahunty is not my god, and he makes mistakes, and I’m free to assert for myself that I can say that I am not absolutely confident of anything, and that assertion itself is not held with absolute confidence either, so maybe I do have absolute confidence, but I don’t assert that I do, and I don’t believe that I do – at least, I cannot recall anything for which I have absolute confidence, and I strongly suspect that there is no belief that I hold with absolute confidence.

  145. oreoman1987 says

    “And btw Matt does claim to know things, just not absolutely – he has described knowledge, repeatedly, as a high level of confidence in a belief, not as absolute certainty that it’s true.”

    This is an example of faith instead of knowledge because confidence is by definition faith.

  146. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Nevermind. Sorry. I won’t engage with Oreoman anymore. He’s just back on his ever-looping record of strawmanning.

    Please ban.

  147. oreoman1987 says

    “I have watched it. I don’t recall him saying anything to that effect. Maybe he did, but then he would have been in error. Timestamp please?
    Also, Matt Dillahunty is not my god, and he makes mistakes, and I’m free to assert for myself that I can say that I am not absolutely confident of anything, and that assertion itself is not held with absolute confidence either, so maybe I do have absolute confidence, but I don’t assert that I do, and I don’t believe that I do – at least, I cannot recall anything for which I have absolute confidence, and I strongly suspect that there is no belief that I hold with absolute confidence.”

    Watch it at the questionnaire.

    Plus, the problem with your statement is that if you don’t know anything with certainty, then you don’t know anything. That’s a problem.

  148. oreoman1987 says

    “Nevermind. Sorry. I won’t engage with Oreoman anymore. He’s just back on his ever-looping record of strawmanning.“

    It’s not a strawman but a demonstration of the inconsistency of Matt’s positions.

  149. oreoman1987 says

    Enlightened Liberal,

    “I strongly suspect that I’m not absolutely certain of anything”

    By this logic, Matt has no basis to say anyone is wrong about anything.

  150. Lamont Cranston says

    Ian Butler says in #99

    Failure to ban the trolls means effectively banning everyone that would like to have an actual conversation, including me. I’ll check in from time to time, but as soon as I see oreoman or kafei I will move on to more productive activities, such as banging my head against the wall.

    I’m with you.

    Perhaps I’ll stop back in if/when the foolishness stops. I’m thankful for Killfile in the mean time.

    Lamont Cranston

  151. Skyfish says

    This thread, like last week’s, is fucking trash. The trolls and the troll feeders are both contributing to the trash heap. I enjoy reading discussion of the contents of the show, but there hasn’t been any for weeks. Mods, please put an end to this shit already.

  152. says

    Maybe it’s time to train a couple neural nets. One based on Kafei’s posts, and the other on oreoman1987’s posts. Then I can have an equally productive back and forth whenever I feel like it. And best of all, once I’m done wasting my time, I can just shut them off.

  153. Wiggle Puppy says

    I left the board a few months ago while oreo was wreaking havoc upon it, and returned to find (1) EL, after extended and protracted dialogue, getting oreo to admit that he doesn’t really know why he waits until a “walk” sign to cross a traffic intersection (one of the most absurd things I’ve ever heard), (2) oreo disappear for a few hours, and then (3) oreo resurface and go right back to the “knowledge equals absolute certainty” schtick that all of this started with.

    This board is dead. Bye, y’all.

  154. Jhon_doe says

    The Muslim guy in the end showed that he cannot face the truth or has the courage to understand it neither he can assert whatever he think is the truth to others while in discussion.
    So in terms of medicine, he is neither herbal nor allopathic but infact homeopathic. Doesn’t taste bad and doesn’t matter much.

  155. t90bb says

    oreo….

    so tell us why you rage on islam and or radical muslims if you yourself have no knowledge and admit whats happened in the past cannot establish certainty of the future?? Why criticize muslims when you yourself admit you know absolutely nothing??? You don’t even know for certain the muslim faith actually exists? right?

    ahh when its convenient for you then you utilize belief w/o certainty, eh?….you are such a pussy.
    MS unmasked you as the pathetic pussy hypocrite you are. You wont be long here.

  156. t90bb says

    oreos game has always been……assert absolutely all propositions are faith based….so as to smuggle in the magic genie hes too much the pussy to admit he cuddles up to…….

    all claims are as ridiculous as the next….to theism is just as good an idea as any other. So is the existence of scooby doo.

    all propositions are absurd because we all know absolutely nothing but then he rails against islam…lol … even though hes not absolutely certain islam even exists….in FACT HE HAS ZERO CONFIDENCE ISLAM EXISTS BECAUSE HES NOT ABSOLUTLEY CERTAIN IT EXISTS…..BUT HE WILL CRITICIZE IT LOLOLOLOOL////

    P U S S Y

  157. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    I never said I didn’t know anything. I never avoid certainty about certain propositions the way Matt and many of his fans do.

  158. t90bb says

    160
    Enlightened Liberal,
    “I strongly suspect that I’m not absolutely certain of anything”
    By this logic, Matt has no basis to say anyone is wrong about anything.

    UMM OREO… YOU JUST SAID……”BY THIS LOCIC, MATT HAS NO BASIS TO SAY ANYONE IS WRONG ABOUT ANYTHING”……….

    ARE YOU, OREO, ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN OF THAT BECAUSE YOU JUST MADE A KNOWLEDGE CLAIM. STOP MAKING KNOWLEDGE CLAIMS WHEN YOU CLAIM YOU KNOW NOTHING ABSOLUTELY…….PUSSY HYPOCRITE!

  159. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    Only the academic skeptics say they know nothing.

    Plus, you as an atheist should be against Islam of all things.

  160. t90bb says

    ACCORDING TO OREO….

    all propositions are absurd because we all know absolutely nothing but then he rails against islam…lol … even though hes not absolutely certain islam even exists….in FACT HE HAS ZERO CONFIDENCE ISLAM EXISTS BECAUSE HES NOT ABSOLUTLEY CERTAIN IT EXISTS…..BUT HE WILL CRITICIZE IT LOLOLOLOOL////

  161. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    Because if you make a paradoxical statement like “I know that I know nothing” like Socrates and the academics do, then your position is self-refuting. This is not a position I take. I grant that knowledge is possible but am also aware that it requires a Gettier defeater that goes beyond justified true belief.

  162. t90bb says

    all propositions are absurd because we all know absolutely nothing but then he rails against islam…lol … even though hes not absolutely certain islam even exists….in FACT HE HAS ZERO CONFIDENCE ISLAM EXISTS BECAUSE HES NOT ABSOLUTLEY CERTAIN IT EXISTS…..BUT HE WILL CRITICIZE IT LOLOLOLOOL////

  163. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    I never claimed I didn’t know anything with certainty. That’s what Matt Dillahunty does.

  164. t90bb says

    OREO…SAYS

    I grant that knowledge is possible but am also aware that it requires a Gettier defeater that goes beyond justified true belief.

    ……AND WHATS THE DEFEATER YOU USE OREO????

  165. t90bb says

    BESIDES YOU EXISTING….TELL US SOMETHING YOU KNOW FOR CERTAIN AND HOW YOU KNOW IT…..

    WHATS YOUR DEFEATER??

  166. t90bb says

    OREO…SAYS
    I grant that knowledge is possible but am also aware that it requires a Gettier defeater that goes beyond justified true belief.

    ……AND WHATS THE DEFEATER YOU USE OREO????

    BESIDES YOU EXISTING….TELL US SOMETHING YOU KNOW FOR CERTAIN AND HOW YOU KNOW IT…..
    WHATS YOUR DEFEATER??

  167. Honey Tone says

    OMFG.

    Just stop interacting with these idiots.

    Whatever might actually be oreo’s problem with Matt, he needs to address it directly with Matt, not us.

  168. t90bb says

    oreo has claimed he has knowledge of things…and has a defeater……

    WHATS THE DEFEATER OREO?

  169. buddyward says

    @Kafei 143

    Again, I’ve presented the papers, and they do support what I’ve said because I’m not saying anything other than what’s been established by this research. So, am I surprised that you’d miss the point once again? No.

    Then it should not be a problem for you to say which post number, either in this thread or the one prior, where you said XYZ document contains the process in which Tabor light (or Beatiric vision) was measured. This document contains the following text: .

    I missed that post then I would apologize. If that post or something similar to that does not exist then you are a liar.

  170. Honey Tone says

    jhon_doe @165

    The Muslim guy in the end showed that he cannot face the truth or has the courage to understand it neither he can assert whatever he think is the truth to others while in discussion.

    The guy from Louisiana was the same way. Both of them believed because of indoctrination, acknowledged it, and still asserted the “truth” and “usefulness” of their religions.

    Both are face palm worthy.

  171. says

    @oreaman1987

    I never claimed I didn’t know anything with certainty. That’s what Matt Dillahunty does.

    Matt once told me on the show that I don’t have to say “F-in’ dumb,” that I could say the word “fuck” on the show. So, I say fuckin’ A to your point in the same fashion you find in Clerks II, Kevin Smith movie, where Randall gives his critique on The Lord of the Rings when compared to Star Wars as opposing trilogies. I’ve heard Matt give this example multiple times in his blogs, on the show, and during his dialogue with Richard Dawkins. Even Steve McRae has pointed out how absurd this is when I brought it up on his channel. If you don’t know what would convince you, if you can’t even define that which you reject, then how the fuck do you know that you’re an atheist? Riddle me that. Unless anyone here reading my post to Oreo can explain it beyond the excuses Matt gives, then please enlighten me. To my mind, Matt sounds like he expresses more of a view akin to Ietsism. Ietsism is people who say there is a “higher power” or “ultimate reality” out there, somewhere, and it’s some type of thing, but they don’t call it God. Matt’s speaks like he’s an atheist towards that ietsistic definition, he seems to necessarily think God is a supernatural (in his definition of the word as something not natural or defies the laws of physics) something that is out there, and he doesn’t know precisely what it is (like the ietsist), that’s why he can’t answer a question like, “What would convince you?” He just assumes that it’s supernatural in the sense of “not natural.” So, he assumes because it’s supernatural, it’s therefore something that can be never be demonstrated, he always falls back on this, it’s like his fantasy Trump card for atheism. And yes, that’s me in the middle of the Brady Bunch squares on Steve McRae’s channel.

  172. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    Where is that post where you said which document that contains the evidence for your claim. You said you already presented it then it should not be a problem pointing me to that post.

  173. Monocle Smile says

    If you don’t know what would convince you, if you can’t even define that which you reject, then how the fuck do you know that you’re an atheist? Riddle me that

    Easy.
    I reject every nontrivial concept of god that anyone has ever presented me with.
    Also, I’m pretty sure the posters here can answer that question differently, so your constant hang-up with Matt Dillahunty makes you look like a whiny baby with an ax to grind.

    What’s hilarious is that you can’t even define what you call “god.” You’ve been asked time and again to give a solid, concrete definition and you consistently fail. So you whine about atheists (who are probably doing work to improve your life), defend obviously wrong religions like christianity and islam (the members of which are probably working to make your life worse) but you have no real idea what you actually believe.

  174. says

    @buddyward

    Where is that post where you said which document that contains the evidence for your claim. You said you already presented it then it should not be a problem pointing me to that post.

    Maybe there’s a semantic confusion occurring here. If you’re literally thinking of some kind of “Light,” be it an inner light, as though these researchers are measuring some kind of abstract light, then you’re misconstruing the point I’ve been trying to make. What I’ve been at great pains to express to you in my posts where I’ve felt I’ve repeated this point over and again, and that is the so-called “Tabor light” is one and the same with Theoria in Christian mysticism or the Beatific vision, it is this phenomenon that is virtually identical to how the CME is defined in the research. To the degree that they can gauge the CME, they are gauging this phenomenon of the so-called “Tabor light.” As I’ve been trying to explain all along, these are all different terms to describe the same phenomenon in consciousness. The CME is the Tabor light is the Beatific vision is Theoria, etc. These are all synonymous terms that point to one and the same phenomenon. I mean, I don’t know how many different ways I can re-phrase this, but I’m willing to discuss it. Of course, it’s not that easy when most there’s a social outcry here of certain intolerant views aimed at getting the hosts’ attention to ban me from participating here. I’d like to continue a discussion, and post the research as it develops and is published relative to these topics in a sincere effort to advance and evolve the conversations on these type of topics. As I’ve told t90bb, I am trying to do something to contribute to this unfolding dialogue at the edge of our culture, at the edge of science and religion, etc. I was invited by Atheist Edge, no pun intended, to join a panel of so-called “professionals,” I’ve never met these bunch, but I’m on there with them, and if anyone liked what they heard in McRae’s content, I’m going to address these topics and points there as well. You know, people want to see me go out the door, but I’m directing people’s attention to the door that leads to the God room. Y’ever try opening that door? That’s a rhetorical question, by the way. Don’t take that too literally.

  175. buddyward says

    @Kafei 186

    Maybe there’s a semantic confusion occurring here. If you’re literally thinking of some kind of “Light,” be it an inner light, as though these researchers are measuring some kind of abstract light, then you’re misconstruing the point I’ve been trying to make. What I’ve been at great pains to express to you in my posts where I’ve felt I’ve repeated this point over and again, and that is the so-called “Tabor light” is one and the same with Theoria in Christian mysticism or the Beatific vision, it is this phenomenon that is virtually identical to how the CME is defined in the research. To the degree that they can gauge the CME, they are gauging this phenomenon of the so-called “Tabor light.” As I’ve been trying to explain all along, these are all different terms to describe the same phenomenon in consciousness. The CME is the Tabor light is the Beatific vision is Theoria, etc. These are all synonymous terms that point to one and the same phenomenon. I mean, I don’t know how many different ways I can re-phrase this, but I’m willing to discuss it. Of course, it’s not that easy when most there’s a social outcry here of certain intolerant views aimed at getting the hosts’ attention to ban me from participating here. I’d like to continue a discussion, and post the research as it develops and is published relative to these topics in a sincere effort to advance and evolve the conversations on these type of topics. As I’ve told t90bb, I am trying to do something to contribute to this unfolding dialogue at the edge of our culture, at the edge of science and religion, etc. I was invited by Atheist Edge, no pun intended, to join a panel of so-called “professionals,” I’ve never met these bunch, but I’m on there with them, and if anyone liked what they heard in McRae’s content, I’m going to address these topics and points there as well. You know, people want to see me go out the door, but I’m directing people’s attention to the door that leads to the God room. Y’ever try opening that door? That’s a rhetorical question, by the way. Don’t take that too literally.

    No there is a dishonesty problem in your part. I asked you for the paper and the location in that paper where Tabor light was measured and you have not provided that. You are now telling me what I think as if you can actually read my mind. You are wrong if you think I am making any assumptions on what Tabor light is.

    So far you have not presented the post number where you claimed that you have already presented the evidence. This is yet another attempt to distract from the matter at hand. Show me the post number where you actually stated which document stated that someone measured Tabor Light and where in that document it was stated otherwise you are lying.

  176. says

    @Monocle Smile

    Easy.
    I reject every nontrivial concept of god that anyone has ever presented me with.

    Then, you’ve basically rejected every God which I’ve repeatedly said as what Einstein called the “naïve” concept of God. Sure, it’s easy to destroy the simple, so-called “nontrivial” conceptions of God. Even some of the gurus I listen to reject those concepts of God. But I don’t think that’s what Matt is talking about, if you reviewed those links, especially how he even asked Richard Dawkins, “What would convince you of God?” Dawkins was pretty much aligned with Matt’s view, sort of adhering to a kind of Arthur C. Clarke’s third law of prediction, that any advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. So, Dawkins spoke about how he might be convinced if he saw Jesus reign down from the heavens in clouds of glory, and there’d be no question about it. Then, he thought maybe that was something only a gullible person could buy as convincing, because someone more skeptical would question whether it was a clever magic trick pulled off by Penn & Teller or something, ultimately admitting as Matt that he wouldn’t know what would convince him either. Terence also said, “No one has coined the perfect metaphor.” I tend to agree with that as well because he was one articulate motherfucker, if you ever heard him speak. And yet he admitted there weren’t the perfect words to as a kind of catch-all analogy that is understood by all. There’s definitely semantic barriers that must be traversed.

    Also, I’m pretty sure the posters here can answer that question differently, so your constant hang-up with Matt Dillahunty makes you look like a whiny baby with an ax to grind.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of Matt Dillahunty, I love what he does. However, there’s certain things I know I could point out to him that might get him to reconsider how he thinks about these things, and I’m just a couple hours away from that dude. I’ve been meaning to actually visit him at one of these afterparties that they throw after the show, they all get together in the recreational part of the studio they have there and throw a grub. If you’ve been following the show, they used to go to certain restaurants in town, but now they have a dedicated place to hang out, and they even say theists are welcome as long as they’re civil. So, I’m going to bring my Sealion ass down there one of these days, and chill with Matt for an evening.

    What’s hilarious is that you can’t even define what you call “god.” You’ve been asked time and again to give a solid, concrete definition and you consistently fail. So you whine about atheists (who are probably doing work to improve your life), defend obviously wrong religions like christianity and islam (the members of which are probably working to make your life worse) but you have no real idea what you actually believe.

    Well, I actually did attempt to define it by elaborating on Wilber’s description of so-called “God” or I prefer “divine” as to point out that the word God, if you believe in evolution, has obviously not existed forever. That’s a very important that’s addressed in the Steve McRae link I left. So, by “divine,” I mean that which people have referred to as this experience of transcendence, of an experience of what in philosophy is referred to as the Absolute is what’s intuited in these type of experiences. And if you’re interested in a description, I’ll refer to that post, and if you’d like to elaborate on it, I’m up for that. Of course, that is until I’m eventually banned, of course. Then, our discussion will end there, but if it doesn’t. If you haven’t read that description, then if you would, I could definitely clarify anything not understood there. Of course, Terence once said, “In a way it’s impossible to talk about DMT, but on the other hand, it’s fun to try to talk about it because it pushes the horse of language into a lather. Basically, when you smoke DMT, what happens is pure confoundment.” Even the professionals point out that it’s very difficult to speak on these states, but I’ll give it a shot. There’s another quote I like, and I’ll leave you with this, and even Alan Watts has said it’s really not something that can be expressed, because it’s ultimately an experience. That’s what is should be transmitted, the words and concepts about it are merely accounts which are intellectually imbibed, but the emphasis in religions is that the experience is the point or as in Buddhism is said, nirvana is the point. The quote is of, once again, Terence:

    The reason it’s so confounding is because its impact is on the language-forming capacity itself. So the reason it’s so confounding is because the thing that is trying to look at the DMT is infected by it—by the process of inspection. So DMT does not provide an experience that you analyze. Nothing so tidy goes on. The syntactical machinery of description undergoes some sort of hyper-dimensional inflation instantly, and then, you know, you cannot tell yourself what it is that you understand. In other words, what DMT does can’t be downloaded into as low-dimensional a language as English. – Terence K. McKenna

  177. says

    @buddyward

    No there is a dishonesty problem in your part. I asked you for the paper and the location in that paper where Tabor light was measured and you have not provided that. You are now telling me what I think as if you can actually read my mind. You are wrong if you think I am making any assumptions on what Tabor light is.

    So far you have not presented the post number where you claimed that you have already presented the evidence. This is yet another attempt to distract from the matter at hand. Show me the post number where you actually stated which document stated that someone measured Tabor Light and where in that document it was stated otherwise you are lying.

    This is my last post to you on this point, I feel this is too repetitive now. Unless you have a different point to make, instead of spamming the same post over and over, to which I have to explain the same point over and over… What you’re calling the “Tabor light,” as I’ve been trying to explain to you is essentially synonymous to the phenomenon of the CME. To the degree science is probing this phenomenon of the CME, they are, essentially, measuring the phenomenon of the Tabor light or the Beatific vision or Theoria or Shekhinah in Judaism or Fana in Islam or nirvana in Buddhism or samadhi in Hinduism, etc. These are all various ways of describing one and the same phenomenon in consciousness.

  178. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    This is my last post to you on this point, I feel this is too repetitive now. Unless you have a different point to make, instead of spamming the same post over and over, to which I have to explain the same point over and over… What you’re calling the “Tabor light,” as I’ve been trying to explain to you is essentially synonymous to the phenomenon of the CME. To the degree science is probing this phenomenon of the CME, they are, essentially, measuring the phenomenon of the Tabor light or the Beatific vision or Theoria or Shekhinah in Judaism or Fana in Islam or nirvana in Buddhism or samadhi in Hinduism, etc. These are all various ways of describing one and the same phenomenon in consciousness.

    So now you are running away because you cannot provide evidence for what you claim.

    Nothing in the documents says CME is synonymous to Tabor light, you are making that shit up. You are the one that claimed Tabor light was measured and you cannot provide evidence on how it was measured. When faced with having to present evidence you run away. All that you can do is accuse someone of not understanding because you cannot provide evidence for your claim. You can easily disprove my accusation but you decide you should tap dance around it and avoid presenting evidence at all cost. You are nothing but a liar.

  179. says

    @buddyward

    So now you are running away because you cannot provide evidence for what you claim.

    Nothing in the documents says CME is synonymous to Tabor light, you are making that shit up. You are the one that claimed Tabor light was measured and you cannot provide evidence on how it was measured. When faced with having to present evidence you run away. All that you can do is accuse someone of not understanding because you cannot provide evidence for your claim. You can easily disprove my accusation but you decide you should tap dance around it and avoid presenting evidence at all cost. You are nothing but a liar.

    Look, brother, I’m not running away at all. I’m here. If I don’t respond tonight, I’ll respond the next day or the following, whenever have time for this. You know we’re doing this off the clock, right? Maybe you don’t care about that fact. Whenever I jump on the computer, I usually devote that time to making some cash, and so this is something on the side I participate in for “free.” As everyone here, I’m sure. That may explain why the hosts don’t participate too often, because they’re out there making money off their atheism. Are you? It doesn’t seem so, you just identify as an atheist, and you happen to spend your time here. I’m not trying to lie at you at all, what I’m telling you is that the very same way Dr. Bill Richards reels these terms off which can be found in the root scriptures of all the world’s major religions, and he mentions the “Beatific vision.” What I’m trying to explain to you, if you study comparative religion, and Bill Richards, by the way, holds a doctorate’s in theology — if you actually study these terms you’ll find that the Beatific vision is the Tabor light or Theoria, these are essentially different ways of describing the same thing. Matt, on the other hand, considers theology to be a “non-subject” study. It’s useless. This is his criticism, you think someone with this attitude sincerely studies comparative religion? Although, he claimed to study comparative religion when I asked him if he did. I doubt it, because as oreoman pointed out, Matt assumes the supernatural when he simultaneously says he doesn’t know what would convince him. That’s a contradictory position, and no one here has explained why that’s not.

  180. says

    all i wanna know is: which theists and/or psychics accurately foretold today’s incineration of the cathedral of notre dame?

  181. Monocle Smile says

    What I’m trying to explain to you, if you study comparative religion, and Bill Richards, by the way, holds a doctorate’s in theology — if you actually study these terms you’ll find that the Beatific vision is the Tabor light or Theoria, these are essentially different ways of describing the same thing

    Oh, so we’re back to argumentum ad “bill richards says so.”
    You know, you might want to consider that merely saying stuff isn’t compelling.

    So, by “divine,” I mean that which people have referred to as this experience of transcendence, of an experience of what in philosophy is referred to as the Absolute is what’s intuited in these type of experiences

    What little I can glean from that word salad is that you mean something entirely mundane and unimpressive when you say “divine.”
    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
    You’re even more boring that the person who calls their coffee cup “god.” At least they don’t spend ten thousand words saying so.

  182. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    Look, brother, I’m not running away at all. I’m here. If I don’t respond tonight, I’ll respond the next day or the following, whenever have time for this. You know we’re doing this off the clock, right? Maybe you don’t care about that fact. Whenever I jump on the computer, I usually devote that time to making some cash, and so this is something on the side I participate in for “free.” As everyone here, I’m sure. That may explain why the hosts don’t participate too often, because they’re out there making money off their atheism. Are you? It doesn’t seem so, you just identify as an atheist, and you happen to spend your time here. I’m not trying to lie at you at all, what I’m telling you is that the very same way Dr. Bill Richards reels these terms off which can be found in the root scriptures of all the world’s major religions, and he mentions the “Beatific vision.” What I’m trying to explain to you, if you study comparative religion, and Bill Richards, by the way, holds a doctorate’s in theology — if you actually study these terms you’ll find that the Beatific vision is the Tabor light or Theoria, these are essentially different ways of describing the same thing. Matt, on the other hand, considers theology to be a “non-subject” study. It’s useless. This is his criticism, you think someone with this attitude sincerely studies comparative religion? Although, he claimed to study comparative religion when I asked him if he did. I doubt it, because as oreoman pointed out, Matt assumes the supernatural when he simultaneously says he doesn’t know what would convince him. That’s a contradictory position, and no one here has explained why that’s not.

    Why are you telling me what Bill Richards says? This has nothing to do with presenting your evidence. You can easily end this by presenting evidence but you are choosing not to because you know that you do not have it and you are afraid to admit it because you know that you are a lying fraud.

  183. says

    @Monocle Smile

    Oh, so we’re back to argumentum ad “bill richards says so.”
    You know, you might want to consider that merely saying stuff isn’t compelling.

    This has nothing to do with Bill Richards or his credentials, this is more accurately about a phenomenon in consciousness which is rare, it doesn’t happen very often naturally these days, it’s happening quite frequently with psychedelics, but that most people, atheists and theists, have not experienced. Bill Richards is merely a voice contributing to the effort to make this more well known, and to accept it and inculcate it into our everyday culture as it had been applied in native american cultures thousands upon thousands years ago.

    What little I can glean from that word salad is that you mean something entirely mundane and unimpressive when you say “divine.”
    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
    You’re even more boring that the person who calls their coffee cup “god.” At least they don’t spend ten thousand words saying so.

    But you see, the point is that someone only interprets it as a “word salad” when it’s gone over their head completely. People accuse Jordan Peterson of “word salad.” I find no “word salad” at all. In fact, after having a CME for myself, I found myself resonating with the scriptures of all the world’s major religions, I wasn’t only intellectually attempting to comprehend the writings of Plotinus on “the One” as you might attempt to intellectually imbibe, I was intuitively resonating with the writings, and as I’ve said, that’s always been the emphasis. I mean, it’s one thing to reject “word salad” because you don’t understand the context of what you’re reading about, it’s quite another thing to undergo a CME for yourself. Then, at that point, you’re not trying to understand things in terms of concepts and words. There’s not even an ego to grasp onto, that temporarily vanishes as well.

  184. Monocle Smile says

    @aarrgghh
    Solid question. Kafei has been asked a number of times about why he thinks the CME is such a big deal. At one point, he finally quoted Terence McKenna claiming that shamans who underwent supposed CMEs were able to solve murders in their tribe. He then dropped this crazy-ass claim when evidence was demanded and pretended like it meant nothing and we should stop asking for falsifiable claims.

  185. Monocle Smile says

    This has nothing to do with Bill Richards or his credentials

    Oh, so you mentioned bill richards and his credentials for shits and giggles?
    This is such an obvious lie that it’s insulting.

    People accuse Jordan Peterson of “word salad.” I find no “word salad” at all

    Then you’re a colossal idiot. You’re not an incel, are you?

    I wasn’t only intellectually attempting to comprehend the writings of Plotinus on “the One” as you might attempt to intellectually imbibe, I was intuitively resonating with the writings

    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
    I could very easily just say “I don’t believe you” and you have ABSOLUTELY NO WAY to convince me otherwise. This is because you lack independent verification and your entire epistemology is broken.

  186. says

    @Monocle Smile You’re straw manning me by taking me out of context. I made a very different point than that, but I would point out you never answered my question to Buddyward at the bottom of #191. You deflected it by bringing up this straw man argument.

  187. Monocle Smile says

    That may explain why the hosts don’t participate too often, because they’re out there making money off their atheis

    Get fucked, asshole. With the exception of Matt, they are all volunteers and they aren’t crooked shills like all the millionaire preachers. What a disgusting, dishonest thing to say. No one will miss you.

  188. buddyward says

    @Kafei

    That may explain why the hosts don’t participate too often, because they’re out there making money off their atheism. Are you?

    Unlike you I make my accusations based on evidence. I do not make money off atheism because I have a better moral standards than those theist that do. If you are going to say otherwise then prepare to present your evidence. Oh wait, you are too much of a liar to do that.

  189. says

    No, those are just the hobby horses of a couple people who have become fixated on arguing with everyone, hoping to get more people to adopt their incoherent positions for whatever reason. Unfortunately, the way the comments are set up basically makes it impossible to avoid people being greeted with endless streams of it. There aren’t multiple topic threads that are easily accessible and running independently at a given time. There is just a single weekly thread for the show as a whole, so if every week, the same people keep insisting on belaboring the same fruitless disagreement, then that will naturally drown out any other topics.
     
    I understand why moderation would be light. One aspect is the time investment to actually moderate discussions, which can be considerable. And if you want to allow people to make their case despite disagreements, so that they can be exposed to counter-arguments and given a chance to correct themselves, or the chance to provide a novel case despite rudeness or inarticulate floundering, which is going to be a large portion of the people that come to make cases, then you have to let some degree of poor behavior slide just for the sake of even having a discussion.
     
    If you required people to be informed and fully honest and so on, you’d just shut down most of the conversations the show is based around having, pretty much as soon as they began. Even when the discussions aren’t directly productive with at least one of the participants seriously considering a well-argued point, they can be illustrative of the arguments that are out there and how poorly supported a lot of positions are.
     
    However, this has gone far beyond that. Many of these discussions have been going nowhere for ages, with some participants apparently incapable of understanding what would be convincing, if they could even muster a coherent position to begin with. At this point, not only are people learning little about arguments in general, we’ve even gone beyond learning the idiosyncrasies and inabilities of certain commenters, and are now endlessly rehashing those.
     
    At some point, it’s best to draw lines on things like how long people can continue to bring up the same topic despite no one being any closer to reaching another side, or the discussions become worse than tedious and unproductive, and worthwhile participants start to go elsewhere, leaving the dregs to concentrate and fester.

  190. III says

    I appreciate those here who choose to interact with trolls like Kafei and Oreoman1987 with some dignity (EnlightmentLiberal) – kudos.

    That aside, the reason they are able to litter the board with their responses is because they are… responding. To the twenty or so people intent on explaining at length to Kafei and Oreoman1987 that they are entirlely beneath notice.

    For myself, I find it about as useful to see the board littered with someone screaming PUSSY PUSSY PUSSY at the trolls as I do the garbage they’re spewing.

  191. DanDare2050 says

    As I said, sophistry (I know don’t engage but fuck it).

    “DanDare2050, Occam’s razors logic would allow solipsism to be true and science to be false since it makes far fewer assumptions than science does.”
    Occam’s razor certainly supports hard solipsism. So? Working from solipsism there is “some reality” within which I have certainty of having experiences. Those experiences, real or not, are consistent and science applies to consistent experiences allowing me to manage what experiences I get.

    “Parsimony has never had a link demonstrated between either simplicity or intuition.” So?
    “Yes, science is based on faith because it’s based on induction.”
    No its not. Its a system for finding patterns and building confidence in the pattern as understood. You can yell induction from here to the end of the universe. It doesn’t matter. Science is pragmatic.
    “The problem of underdetermination shows that no scientific theory can be verified or falsified.”
    Then its useless, since science hypothesis can be falsified and often are.
    “In the end, scientific theories can only be best guesses.”
    Yep, justified and being more or less confident. That’s a good thing. The alternate is just make claims and say they are true or not based on whatever the fuck.

  192. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I really do try to give the benefit of the doubt, because this place should be about honest constructive dialog between opposing viewpoints, but even I have limits. Saying something as absurd as “I don’t know why I wait for the ‘walk’ sign to illuminate before crossing” is absolute nonsense, and it’s definitely time to end the conversation. It’s a troll or someone whom I hope has the necessary help.

  193. billkw says

    Stop feeding the Trolls. Two hundred and some posts in and maybe a half dozen not referencing them. Nonsense. They may not go away, but at least answers to them won’t clutter the blog.

  194. speedofsound says

    Absolute certainty is a religious idea. It necessarily requires a belief in a god that turns out to be nonsense. Letting go of the nonsense eliminates solipsism, BIV, ‘problems’ of induction, and a host of other thorns. It is amazing how much colloquial philosophy is still being hijacked by theism.

  195. speedofsound says

    What would it take to be absolutely certain that you will not be killed while crossing the street later today? Consider how much time will pass between now and reaching the crossing destination and the speed of meteors to arrive at the locality in which absolute knowledge will need be attained.

    Then consider how you would know if the laws of the universe were going to remain stable during this time.

    What kind of a thing could contain that knowledge?

  196. twarren1111 says

    Kafei what has become now an issue that is overwhelming is the style in which you represent reality and we not only don’t trust your view but, even after a particular fallacy is pointed out, you continue to use the fallacy. A fallacy you commit often is confusing claims as evidence. Maybe this pithy definition I just came up with help set the light bulb off for once. What do you call a claim that is given as evidence? A hypothesis. All you are doing every time you through some expert and their opinion and use that as evidence for your claim, all you are doing is making another claim.

    Oreoman is doing equivocation so inverted, that bc his hypotheses and how he defines things are symmetrically inverted, his ‘sayings’ are like parody. I also wonder if as Kafei burns out if what he becomes is Oreoman? That’s a cool hypothesis.

    Think about it: see how he’s equivocating so hard on faith. His appearance means either Kafei knows him well enuf to recruit him or he’s been lurking. Occam’s razor makes choice two more probable. And I called at the faith equivocation. What is funny is that Oreoman has so inverted how he uses the word that it no longer applies to religion. No matter what, a religious person will defend believing something without evidence by citing faith. And bc the scenario I’m talking about is when you’ve been able to debunk their evidence face to face, what they will resort to is faith as in ‘knowing something is true despite the evidence or in spite of the evidence’. And you know you’ve hit that point when they go from defensiveness to a smile and talk about their faith as if it is the most logical argument bc it’s a virtue to Christians. A strong knowledge. Just zero evidence. Their evidence is their faith. And that’s the most potent equivocation Bc it never ceases, it never halts, it creates a perpetual motion tautology.

    So, Kafei is at a point of lack of trust that we keep debunking the same debunk and he just can’t and won’t see the whole picture. If we were face to face, or had some other type of moderation to keep everything honest, we could resolve the issues. But Kafei I think your analytic mind has become to polluted with faith based reasoning. You are now in possession of an intuitive intelligence so potent in its causal confusion you are very resistant to learning by reality. In other words, Kafei, you represent the problem of induction.

    The point of Bayesian reasoning is updating your probabilities as you learn more. This way, as you live your life, analyzing, the more you get your math correct, the more you practice testing ur reality and getting it right, the stronger ur intuition will get. This is especially important when you are trying to solve the problem of induction by collecting more evidence in the context of your claim. What will happen over time is that your exceptions will become new claims and so on. After years you become wiser and wiser. And bc the physical math of these perfect codes is a geometry it all becomes easier and easier. Like when u have the last pieces of a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle.

    But you refuse to update. So eventually, a debunked claim or evidence comes up again. And the result is the halting problem. And you lose information. You waste time and energy. All heat and no entropy.

    Oreoman is the Stephen Colbert of trolls. They are so good at their inversion that it brings to light nicely if they fail to invert there whole world.

    Like a word salad vaudeville act would do….

    Kiln-Time

  197. buddyward says

    To those who think that we should stop interacting with Kafei and Oreoman, you have a recourse. This is John Iacoletti’s email:

    john@atheist-community.org

    Feel free to email him and post a complaint. John is a very nice person and my experience is that he does respond promptly.

    I am of the opinion that although this blog should maintain a free exchange of ideas, dishonesty should not be allowed. That hijacking threads should not be allowed. However, I do not see that happening.

    My interaction with Kafei is to avoid addressing his claims about CME but to hold him accountable for other claims and expose him for his dishonesty. As you may have already seen that despite numerous attempts to give Kafei a chance to provide evidence he is unwilling to do so and continues to redirect conversations in order to avoid his burden of proof.

    My observation here is that not interacting with these individuals do not work. I think that unless everyone stops this sort of behavior will continue and so far this has not happen. I doubt that everyone will agree to simply ignore Kafei and oreoman but I am willing to do so long as everyone else does.

  198. t90bb says

    NOTICE THE PUSSY OREO IS/WAS???

    HE finally admitted that he knows THINGS with absolute certainty…….because he has a “defeater”………

    SO WE FINALLY GOT THERE…..what do you suppose his defeater is??? (considering he has brought Sye Ten Bruganoverbite into the discussion earlier)???

    I asked OREO specifically to list things he knows (other than he exists) for certain….and how he knows it (provide his defeater)….and he vanished!!!!

    Imagine that DISHONEST from the very start……. I Had the clown pegged from the very first post.

    He should be immediately banned permanently due to his flagrant dishonesty.

  199. oreoman1987 says

    Kafei,

    Indeed. Many people on this blog seem to not understand philosophy and the theories of justification that are available. Matt Dillahunty and many of his fans seem to hold inconsistent positions on many things and assert that they don’t have certainty of anything but yet continue to make knowledge and truth claims.

    All I’ve ever asked them is what their starting point for reasoning is by which they know anything to be true.

  200. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    The problem is is that you need a starting point that can deduce your own existence.

    I do know everything I’ve been saying because to say I’m not certain of anything is a self-contradiction. And I can demonstrate all of it with philosophy because philosophy is the study of everything. What’s your starting point for reasoning?

  201. Cousin Ricky says

    I’m not afraid to walk up to Matt and say hello to him at a convention. I might even offer him a few cough drops before his speech. I am afraid to get into a debate with him.

  202. t90bb says

    213…OREO….

    so tell us some things you know for ABSOLUTELY certain (besides you exist)…..and how you know it. Please specifically define the “defeater” you have,,,,,,,

    still waiting

  203. twarren1111 says

    recall when I was addressing the Zoroastrianism and Judaism issue (which when I did answer on this blog it turns out I missed the question)? I said I emailed Richard Carrier about the issue? Well he replied today.

    To my surprise, I think I worded the issue correctly to RC: what was the degree of influence of Zoroastrianism on monotheism development of Judaism. He basically says it was a major influence but to say Judaism evolved solely from Zoroastrianism is going too far. At least that’s my Barr Report.

    Here’s the email I sent:
    Richard,

    My shameless plug to get your attention is that I met up with you at [redacted bc I’m shy] last year (my friend Jill was with me) and we purchased two of your books!!

    My second shameless plug is I’m looking for a citation(s) related to a claim I made on The Atheist Experience blog and I’m having trouble finding one.

    I made the claim that early, ancient Hebrews (I’m not certain if that’s the right term), circa 800 BCE were polytheistic. Eg, El, Baal, yhwh, Astarte, etc. I know there’s even evidence that yhwh was married to Astarte. It was my understanding that there was a diaspora after the Babylonians (Nebuchadnezzar) conquered Israel where Hebrews were taken to Babylon. Then, it’s my understanding that Cyrus from Persia conquered Babylonia and returned the Hebrews to Israel.

    It is my understanding that Ezra, Kings document this fairly accurately as well. It was then my understanding that the influence of Zoroastrianism occurred as part of the Persian influence. Part of the influence was providing the impetus to drive Judaism into monotheism. Additional influences were the provision of ideas regarding evil, resurrection, and such.

    My questions:
    1. can you provide any links to scholarly articles supporting the hypothesis that ancient polytheistic Judaism evolved into the modern monotheistic/Abrahamic monotheistic religion we know today as a result of the influence of the Zoroastrian magi from Persia circa 540 BCE?
    2. Is it a valid concept to say that ancient Judaism evolved into our modern Judaism via the influence of Zoroastrianism and that the influence of Zoroastrianism also continued to have an effect on Christianity as it developed?

    Thank you in advance for your time.

  204. t90bb says

    OREO….

    tell us what you KNOW for absolutely certain about the Muslim faith that causes your ridicule……and how you know it for Absolutely certain…….

    still waiting……

  205. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    The problem is is that by assuming your own existence is to beg the question because you don’t have a starting point to demonstrate it.

    I’ll post my axiom and explain it later today.

  206. twarren1111 says

    Here is his reply (part 2):
    On the Zoroastrian influences (which came later and transformed Judaism):

    See the references I cite in Not the Impossible Faith, pp. 90-100 – https://www.richardcarrier.info/BooksbyRichardCarrier.html#NIF – and…

    http://tinyurl.com/y224mwxj

    https://www.jstor.org/stable/1464919

    On whether Zoroastrianism influenced Christianity directly rather than through the filter of its influences on Judaism I have no opinion. The latter hypotheses seems more than sufficient.

  207. Cousin Ricky says

    The very fact that I have self-awareness proves to myself that I exist in some fashion, even if it be no more than a brain in a vat. However, I cannot prove to other conscious beings that I exist, nor can it be proved to me that any such other conscious beings exist.

    I consider everything about the universe to be probabilistic to a greater or lesser extent, and induction leads me to believe that myself and my surroundings are substantially as I perceive them. I do not believe absolute certainty is necessary.

  208. t90bb says

    216….TWARREN…

    posts 168 173 175 OREO claims he has knowledge and absolute certainty for things because he has a defeater for the Gettier problem that goes beyond justified true belief……

    I have asked repeatedly what he knows for absolutetly certain (besides he exists) and how he knows it (and what his defeater is)……..

    hes gone silent on the topic……so hes going to double back now like the pussy she is.

  209. t90bb says

    oreos game has always been……assert absolutely all propositions are faith based….so as to smuggle in the magic genie hes too much the pussy to admit he cuddles up to…….
    all claims are as ridiculous as the next….to theism is just as good an idea as any other. So is the existence of scooby doo.
    all propositions are absurd because we all know absolutely nothing but then he rails against islam…lol … even though hes not absolutely certain islam even exists….in FACT HE HAS ZERO CONFIDENCE ISLAM EXISTS BECAUSE HES NOT ABSOLUTLEY CERTAIN IT EXISTS…..BUT HE WILL CRITICIZE IT LOLOLOLOOL////

  210. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    You should look into epistemology and Pyrrhonian skepticism.

    That’s the only position that avoids faith.

  211. t90bb says

    OREO….
    tell us what you KNOW for absolutely certain about the Muslim faith that causes your ridicule……and how you know it for Absolutely certain…….
    still waiting……

  212. t90bb says

    227….stop deflecting and try to be a man….

    OREO….
    tell us what you KNOW for absolutely certain about the Muslim faith that causes your ridicule……and how you know it for Absolutely certain…….
    still waiting……

  213. twarren1111 says

    Science is based upon evidence supported by an appropriate probability determination via Bayes reasoning.

    The only assumption science based reasoning makes is that the speed of light of a massless particle in a vacuum is 300,000,000 m/s. And that assumption is measured. Repeatedly.

    All math and it’s axioms stem from that one piece of data. From there stems the pyramid of sciences. What is happening as one ascends the pyramid is that as one goes from math up to neurobiology is that entropy is switching in the proportion that is Shannon vs Algorithmic.

    Anyway…I like Oreos in milk. A lot.

  214. oreoman1987 says

    t90bb,

    Being a mitigated skeptic, I know for certain that the external world is real and that other belief systems exist because with this position I can deduce all of it.

    I’ll explain it further later today.

    If you have a starting point that allows you to know anything, please present it. Otherwise, your stuck with faith and dogmatism.

  215. t90bb says

    oreoman1987 says
    April 15, 2019 at 9:48 pm
    t90bb,
    I never said I didn’t know anything. I never avoid certainty about certain propositions the way Matt and many of his fans do.

    oreoman1987 says
    April 15, 2019 at 9:53 pm
    t90bb,
    Because if you make a paradoxical statement like “I know that I know nothing” like Socrates and the academics do, then your position is self-refuting. This is not a position I take. I grant that knowledge is possible but am also aware that it requires a Gettier defeater that goes beyond justified true belief.

    OK OREO…list some things you know for ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN (besides you exist)…..and how you know it for ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN……be sure to specify your “defeater”!!

    STILL WAITINGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG

  216. oreoman1987 says

    twarren1111,

    The problem is is that science is based on induction which doesn’t lead to certainty because it doesn’t guarantee conclusions.

    I’d also argue that there is no scientific method. Especially due to underdetermination and demarcation.

  217. t90bb says

    OREO…stop shifting the burden…..its not about what I claim to believe or know…..its about your claims below…..now man up pussyboy…..

    oreoman1987 says
    April 15, 2019 at 9:48 pm
    t90bb,
    I never said I didn’t know anything. I never avoid certainty about certain propositions the way Matt and many of his fans do.
    oreoman1987 says
    April 15, 2019 at 9:53 pm
    t90bb,
    Because if you make a paradoxical statement like “I know that I know nothing” like Socrates and the academics do, then your position is self-refuting. This is not a position I take. I grant that knowledge is possible but am also aware that it requires a Gettier defeater that goes beyond justified true belief.

    OK OREO…list some things you know for ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN (besides you exist)…..and how you know it for ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN……be sure to specify your “defeater”!!

    STILL WAITINGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG

  218. t90bb says

    oreoman1987 says
    April 15, 2019 at 9:48 pm
    t90bb,
    I never said I didn’t know anything. I never avoid certainty about certain propositions the way Matt and many of his fans do.
    oreoman1987 says
    April 15, 2019 at 9:53 pm
    t90bb,
    Because if you make a paradoxical statement like “I know that I know nothing” like Socrates and the academics do, then your position is self-refuting. This is not a position I take. I grant that knowledge is possible but am also aware that it requires a Gettier defeater that goes beyond justified true belief.

    OK OREO…list some things you know for ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN (besides you exist)…..and how you know it for ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN……be sure to specify your “defeater”!!

    STILL WAITINGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG

  219. says

    @speedofsound

    Absolute certainty is a religious idea. It necessarily requires a belief in a god that turns out to be nonsense. Letting go of the nonsense eliminates solipsism, BIV, ‘problems’ of induction, and a host of other thorns. It is amazing how much colloquial philosophy is still being hijacked by theism.

    Philosophy isn’t hijacked from theism, religion is the original philosophy. You know, Hypatia, the Greek female philosopher who lived after Plotinus, echoed the teachings of Plotinus who taught that the goal of philosophy is a “mystical union with the divine.” Absolute certainty arise out of this involvement with the Philosophical Absolute or what Plotinus called “The One.” That’s the basis of this notion of absolute certainty.

    @t90bb

    OK OREO…list some things you know for ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN (besides you exist)…..and how you know it for ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN……be sure to specify your “defeater”!!

    EF answered that question on the stream a couple of nights ago. The defeater? You’re asking for something to defeat an absolute? That’s impossible.

  220. Monocle Smile says

    Philosophy isn’t hijacked from theism, religion is the original philosophy

    What absolute twaddle

    the goal of philosophy is a “mystical union with the divine.”

    Of course, none of those words existed, because English wasn’t a thing, so you have no way of knowing that. What, don’t like your own stupid-ass points being used against you?

    Also, why do you take so much stock in the words of professional trolls like Darth Dawkins and EF?

  221. Monocle Smile says

    Oreo, how is it that you are typing on a computer? Why does the computer work?
    I know you won’t answer this honestly.

  222. t90bb says

    So folks..after all that posturing about Matts beliefs being worthless because he lacks absolute certainty……oreo now claims he is a “mitigated skeptic”……..

    OREO said repeatedly that if your not absolutely certain of anything you cannot KNOW anything…….but then claims knowledge as a “mitigated skeptic”

    AND THERE YOU HAVE IT FOLKS….as dishonest as you can be!

    Hume contrasts ‘excessive’ scepticism with two forms of ‘mitigated’ scepticism, that can result from correcting excessive scepticism using common sense. The first form involves a change in how we hold our beliefs. It opposes dogmatic certainty, inspires modesty and caution, and attacks pride, prejudice, and disdain for people who disagree with us. Philosophy shows that the basis of our beliefs in reason is insecure.

    The second form of mitigated scepticism draws the conclusion that there are certain subjects that we cannot coherently enquire about. Reasoning can legitimately inform us about mathematics and particular matters of fact, existence and causation, that can be established by experience. But metaphysical enquiries, including the attempt to show the external exists (or does not) are impossible, while matters of religion are best founded on faith and revelation, not reason.

  223. t90bb says

    I have to give much credit to Monocle Smile…..his observations regarding Oreos position regarding Muslims led to his own unraveling…..

  224. twarren1111 says

    Axioms do not have to be proven to be true. Indeed, that is what Godel proved to us with math with his incompleteness theorem. We know that any set of axioms has things that are true but not proveable as true. This is known and not a stumbling block. While his findings initially (broke) affected the philosophy of math (and thus shook the whole pyramid) over time scientists learned what Godel’s findings mean.

    The key is time. As in, how the problem of induction and gettier problems and all the other things you bring as complaints have been dealt with.

    Knowledge is when via Bayesian reasoning the probability your hypothesis being correct is when the probability of TP/(TP PLUS FP) is above a level that is considered significant. Even the most binary relationship will have answers that are at most 99% supporting the hypothesis and 1% supporting the null hypothesis. Yes, you can hone your decimal place, but always will there be 2 answers that add to unitary.

    Anyway, I hope that helps you see how the problem of induction, the Gettier problems for JTB, how the even the concept of JTB has been updated via Bayesian reasoning, how the problem of underestimation is solved, and whatever other problem has been raised. Oh, and this math reveals where Hume was correct and not correct. And any other philosophers you’d like to point out.

    And yes, one could put philosophy at the base of the science pyramid bc that’s true. But what has happened is that so much knowledge has been determined at the appropriate thresholds in so many sciences that philosophy now is no longer the source of non-trivial hypotheses. In other words, there is nothing in pure philosophy that defines via logic and it’s mathematics any claim that has not been adequately asked and answered via another science such as math, physics, chemistry and on up to neuroscience. This is why physicists such as Krause and Hawking have recently said philosophy is ‘dead’. Why? Bc it did their job so well they eliminated their field.

    Scholarly pursuits are characteristized by their practitioners in a peculaiar way: they are trying to get rid of their profession every moment they practice it. And that’s the problem when u have an expanding universe. Even if we have our geometry down to ten the minus 43 seconds and can make predictions now that won’t be solved for billions of years, when you have a puzzle well solved, what the ‘open borders’ of the puzzle that keep expanding do is they provide more questions. More claims. More evidence. And that means constant updating of your Bayesian reasoning and so on.

  225. twarren1111 says

    You know….I think a series of 10 minute videos debunking Darth, Oreoman and Kafei would make excellent foundations for a vlog. Indeed, if Rationality Rules was a user of this blog, he’d have a deep well of material for his format on his YouTube channel.

  226. III says

    @buddyward – I am also of the opinion that the blog should be a free exchange of ideas; your approach seems pretty sincere to me. (Appreciated your balanced note to @Varkey a few weeks ago.)

    Yep, @Kafei has failed, demonstrably and repeatedly, to produce evidence. At this point, anyone interacting with him is not doing it in the interest of truth or education, for the benefit of the blog or anyone reading it, but for reasons that are not terribly different from why @Kafei and @oreoman1987 post.

    Not terribly different, just as self-serving.

    I’m not sure I see the point of banning one half of the problem.

  227. twarren1111 says

    Science is based upon Bayesian reasoning. When you see evidence with confidence intervals or p values or relative risk or any read out they provide to demonstrate the difference between results that’s bayesian reasoning and they are using the scientific method to handle all the objections Oreoman makes. In most sciences once you reach the biological sciences 95% probability when you determine the TP/(TP + FP) is considered truth or knowledge. The more experiments you do, you refine the probability as close to 99% as you want. Each exception to the rule you find as you eliminate further uncertainty in your data by raising the probability the claim is true from 95% to 99% is where new hypotheses come from. In physics, in particular quantum mechanics, particle physics, and astrophysics you need data with probability true down to 12 decimal places.

    Anyway, once in general u reach 95% or greater then you can be certain the hypothesis given the data is true.

  228. t90bb says

    245…someone posted a link to one of the mods a few dozen posts back….please use it. I have absolute certainty (almost) that our 2 whales will be gone for good in 24 hours or less. Time to sweep the place clean….but don’t worry….they and others will be back…….new idiots appear here frequently!

  229. says

    @twarren1111

    So, Kafei is at a point of lack of trust that we keep debunking the same debunk and he just can’t and won’t see the whole picture.

    The science I cited hasn’t been debunked by anyone here. What do you think has been debunked? You know, I could say the same thing, that you aren’t willing to consider some of the points I’ve emphasized with the research, and therefore you’re not seeing the whole picture. I’ve explained faith is the trust to dissolve into the Absolute, it is trust to completely let go of one’s ego. That’s what faith is. That’s why all religious disciplines involve methods of completely dissolving the ego, be it meditation, asceticism or the shamanic use of entheogens. These are all methods of dissolution, of completely dissolving one’s ego.

    If we were face to face, or had some other type of moderation to keep everything honest, we could resolve the issues. But Kafei I think your analytic mind has become to polluted with faith based reasoning. You are now in possession of an intuitive intelligence so potent in its causal confusion you are very resistant to learning by reality. In other words, Kafei, you represent the problem of induction.

    I disagree. The CME that is emphasized by the science is not something that is understood by induction. It’s a sudden form of enlightenment. The noetic quality involves powerful intuition, such that people describe these experiences as “ultimate truth” or “ultimate reality” or an experience of the philosophical Absolute.

    The point of Bayesian reasoning is updating your probabilities as you learn more. This way, as you live your life, analyzing, the more you get your math correct, the more you practice testing ur reality and getting it right, the stronger ur intuition will get. This is especially important when you are trying to solve the problem of induction by collecting more evidence in the context of your claim. What will happen over time is that your exceptions will become new claims and so on. After years you become wiser and wiser. And bc the physical math of these perfect codes is a geometry it all becomes easier and easier. Like when u have the last pieces of a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle.

    Well, I’m glad you brought this analogy up. So, you’re using Bayesian reasoning to guide your intellect, your ego understands reality bit by bit using this method until it can have a clearer and more full-view of that 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzle. Well, to borrow this analogy, I would say the CME is an experience that doesn’t require Beyasian reasoning to gain more pieces of that jigsaw puzzle, it’s a glimpse of the entirety of that puzzle, the full puzzle, not simply the puzzle you would have developed during your life time, and perhaps you would through your Bayesian reasoning eventually have a broader grasp of that puzzle, but maybe you’ll never attain all the pieces. Well, the CME is a temporary glimpse of that full puzzle, then when you return from that experience, instead of building a puzzle, you’re now trying to understand reality from having seen the full puzzle ahead of time. To quote Terence McKenna, once again:

    “The shaman visits the end. All that precedes the end, in other words, it’s like turning to the last page of the novel and finding out how it all comes out, once you know how it all comes out, you’re free from the ordinary anxiety of worry and concern, you return to your place in time more like an actor on a stage rather than a person caught in a universe they can’t understand. That’s the key thing, they shaman understands the universe in which he or she is living and the rest of us are only provisionally groping to understand, and this understanding is achieved through this higher dimensional view point. The shaman literally looks down on time as a king looks down on his kingdom from his castle.” -Terence McKenna

    But you refuse to update.

    I’ve already had my update. Once again, I could argue it’s you that refuses to upgrade.

    So eventually, a debunked claim or evidence comes up again.

    “Debunked” in past tense means that you’ve debunked something. That hasn’t happen. If the science I speak on was debunked, then it wouldn’t continue to flourish in the fashion that it does.

    And the result is the halting problem. And you lose information. You waste time and energy. All heat and no entropy.

    Well, my time hasn’t gotten over yet.

  230. twarren1111 says

    I hope that helps you Oreo.

    Idk about banning you two. Oreo you are parody. Kafei you are broken. It’s like when I’d hear residents complain about an admission they’re getting by saying that the case was of little teaching value.

    Well, if I have achieved my goal of communicating better, which by replies it appears that I have, then those who’ve been reading my posts the last three weeks have seen that there’s a wealth of teaching and teachable moments that I’ve found with Kafei, a Gem and now Oreoman.

    And I’ve noticed that those who have responded too are bringing up appropriate points in their language. In other words, one thing trolling does is strengthen one’s defenses. It’s why teaching does so much to educate the teacher. We have all benefited from Kafei and Gem and Oreoman.

    So…I’m ok if they’re banned and I’m ok if they aren’t. So I guess my vote is ‘present’.

    One thing I do know, they will be replaced. So…why ban…

  231. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    Remembered a pithy turn of phrase distilling things that’ve been said already. Leaving it here…
     
    Article: WIkipedia – All models are wrong

    a common aphorism in statistics; it is often expanded as “All models are wrong, but some are useful”.

     

    Now it would be very remarkable if any system existing in the real world could be exactly represented by any simple model. However, cunningly chosen parsimonious models often do provide remarkably useful approximations.
    […]
    For such a model there is no need to ask the question “Is the model true?”. If “truth” is to be the “whole truth” the answer must be “No”. The only question of interest is “Is the model illuminating and useful?”.

     

    A model is a simplification or approximation of reality and hence will not reflect all of reality. […] While a model can never be “truth,” a model might be ranked from very useful, to useful, to somewhat useful to, finally, essentially useless.

     

    Newton’s theory generally has excellent predictive power. Yet Newton’s theory is not an approximation of Einstein’s theory. For illustration, consider an apple falling down from a tree. Under Newton’s theory, the apple falls because Earth exerts a force on the apple – what is called “the force of gravity”. Under Einstein’s theory, Earth does not exert any force on the apple. Hence, Newton’s theory might be regarded as being, in some sense, completely wrong but extremely useful.

  232. twarren1111 says

    #248 @kafei
    Your response is what mean that you make my ability to see how things relate in reality better. Your response to me is valuable. And I will respond to you. But Jill is calling me and I gotta go. I’ll come out to play later.

  233. Monocle Smile says

    So, you’re using Bayesian reasoning to guide your intellect, your ego understands reality bit by bit using this method until it can have a clearer and more full-view of that 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzle. Well, to borrow this analogy, I would say the CME is an experience that doesn’t require Beyasian reasoning to gain more pieces of that jigsaw puzzle, it’s a glimpse of the entirety of that puzzle, the full puzzle, not simply the puzzle you would have developed during your life time, and perhaps you would through your Bayesian reasoning eventually have a broader grasp of that puzzle, but maybe you’ll never attain all the pieces. Well, the CME is a temporary glimpse of that full puzzle, then when you return from that experience, instead of building a puzzle, you’re now trying to understand reality from having seen the full puzzle ahead of time

    Bald assertion with zero evidence. Seriously. do you not understand the magnitude of your claim? If this were true, then you could advance science by decades, perhaps centuries! And yet you have absolutely nothing to show for it.

    I’ve already had my update. Once again, I could argue it’s you that refuses to upgrade.

    No, dumb shit. See, I can actually demonstrate my understanding of reality. I mean, satellites don’t just build and operate themselves. Meanwhile, all you can do is vomit word salad with zero testability or pragmatic application. So who actually has a better understanding of reality? And how would anyone know?

  234. t90bb says

    249….I vote to ban….frees up space for new discussions. We have tried to help Kafei and the others as much as possible. They can take our input and honestly review it..or dismiss it. They are not simply disagreeing honestly….they have repeatedly been dishonest and fail to acknowledge simple correction. I will not re engage with Kafei. Hes convinced hes right and is known to do amazing and impressive mental gymnastics to protect his beliefs. He clearly needs his belief. As a former drug/boozer I know how obsessive we can be. If his fairy tales keep him off other shit then good for him. Some of us need our minds occupied even if its nonsense. He would prolly make an awesome atheist if he were able to get honest with himself. Oh well.

    I agree that I learn a shit ton here…..twarren you are one of my favs. Don’t ever leave us!! LOL…amen

  235. twarren1111 says

    #231 @Oreoman1987 you stated:
    “If you have a starting point that allows you to know anything, please present it. Otherwise, your stuck with faith and dogmatism.”

    The starting point is that the speed of a massless particle in spacetime is 300,000,000 m/s.

  236. buddyward says

    @III 245

    I can see and appreciate your input and perhaps I did went overboard with demanding evidence when it was clear that evidence does not exist.

    I believe that there ought to be a certain standards to the conversation in this blog and when two parties disagree to a point where many are calling for a ban on one or both that a moderator should break that tie. Allowing trolls to continue in this blog will just turn away people who have more meaningfull insights as evidenced by posts in this thread by people who says they will either abandon this thread and comeback on another to see if the trollish behavior is still dominating the thread. It does not have to be an all out ban but perhaps a stern warning would be sufficient or perhaps as others have suggested, a forced time out would be in order.

    If I find myself in the receiving end of that time out, then I would (begrudgingly) accept it for as long as good reason is provided and that the rules are applied to everyone. However, none of these is possible without someone moderating.

  237. Lamont Cranston says

    warren1111 says in # 254

    The starting point is that the speed of a massless particle in spacetime is 300,000,000 m/s.

    Well, actually, more like 299,792,458 meters per second give or take a few centimeters. 🙂

    Sorry, I couldn’t help myself.

    Lamont Cranston

  238. says

    @Monocle Smile

    Bald assertion with zero evidence. Seriously. do you not understand the magnitude of your claim? If this were true, then you could advance science by decades, perhaps centuries! And yet you have absolutely nothing to show for it.

    I absolutely agree. I believe that’s why there’s been problem-solving experiments with psychedelics. The issue is that these psychedelics have been made illegal, so we lost over 30 years worth of research. We could have been very advanced by now, beyond all the Johns Hopkins research if it simply weren’t made illegal back in the ’60s even for scientific research. Another issue is that we need smart people to do this stuff. Imagine if we had Michio Kaku use psychedelics, but instead the majority of people doing this stuff are kids living in trailers playing XBOX One. Terence McKenna once said, “Psychedelics don’t work on stupid people.”

    I’ve already had my update. Once again, I could argue it’s you that refuses to upgrade.

    No, dumb shit. See, I can actually demonstrate my understanding of reality. I mean, satellites don’t just build and operate themselves. Meanwhile, all you can do is vomit word salad with zero testability or pragmatic application. So who actually has a better understanding of reality? And how would anyone know?

    Wikipedia has a very interesting article on “Psychedelics and ecology.” There’s studies that have shown that people who have these type of psychedelic experiences become more environmentally conscious or eco-conscious or what Ken Wilber calls “Worldcentrism.” Well, I’ll leave you with a quote from Alan Watts:

    Inability to accept the mystic experience is more than an intellectual handicap. Lack of awareness of the basic unity of organism and environment is a serious and dangerous hallucination. For in a civilization equipped with immense technological power, the sense of alienation between man and nature leads to the use of technology in a hostile spirit—to the “conquest” of nature instead of intelligent co-operation with nature. The result is that we are eroding and destroying our environment, spreading Los Angelization instead of civilization. This is the major threat overhanging Western, technological culture, and no amount of reasoning or doom-preaching seems to help. We simply do not respond to the prophetic and moralizing techniques of conversion upon which Jews and Christians have always relied. But people have an obscure sense of what is good for them-call it “unconscious self-healing,” “survival instinct,” “positive growth potential,” or what you will. Among the educated young there is therefore a startling and unprecedented interest in the transformation of human consciousness. All over the Western world publishers are selling millions of books dealing with Yoga, Vedanta, Zen Buddhism, and the chemical mysticism of psychedelic drugs, and I have come to believe that the whole “hip” subculture, however misguided in some of its manifestations, is the earnest and responsible effort of young people to correct the self-destroying course of industrial civilization.

  239. twarren1111 says

    One thing to explain: one of my favorite books is Stop-Time by Frank Conroy. I decided a few years back that “kiln-time” would be a good name for a novel or memoir as it refers to life being a crucible and with each firing you go thru in life either strengthens your steel or turns you to ash. The central insight is that as everything is ‘one’ or unitary Bc we all come from the same universe and the same star dust that what makes morality ‘objective’ is when you relate ‘morality’ to how you use entropy in all its forms. In other words, it’s about maximizing time and energy.

    I met Jill in May 2017. And after about 6 months she finally got a word in edgewise and told me that while she understands exactly what I mean by ‘kiln-time’ that she always pictured the phrase in her mind as ‘killin’ Time’. And that’s pretty cool. So…I’m on the record for ‘kiln-time’ for a book title.

  240. twarren1111 says

    Lamont Cranston, your nerd cred on the blog is secure; how could you NOT point out my error!

    Lol.

  241. Monocle Smile says

    I absolutely agree. I believe that’s why there’s been problem-solving experiments with psychedelics. The issue is that these psychedelics have been made illegal, so we lost over 30 years worth of research. We could have been very advanced by now, beyond all the Johns Hopkins research if it simply weren’t made illegal back in the ’60s even for scientific research. Another issue is that we need smart people to do this stuff. Imagine if we had Michio Kaku use psychedelics, but instead the majority of people doing this stuff are kids living in trailers playing XBOX One. Terence McKenna once said, “Psychedelics don’t work on stupid people.”

    Whiny bigotry and conspiracy claptrap. Plus an appalling lack of self-awareness. I went to college with kids who parachuted Adderall and it gave them a major boost in productivity, but that doesn’t mean Adderall makes them “see the whole puzzle.” You’re dishonestly conflating two things.

    Well, I’ll leave you with a quote from Alan Watts

    I will argue all day long that this is an artifact of flower child culture and only tangentially related to the psychedelics themselves. Also, how in the actual fuck is this a response to my post? And why the fuck do you keep posting quotes that you already know won’t be compelling or meaningful to anyone?

  242. oreoman1987 says

    twarren1111,

    I understand that axioms by definition are not provable. And That any belief system which is consistent cannot be complete. However, I’d be interested to see if anyone does have an axiom that gets past the skeptics.

  243. says

    @Monocle Smile

    Whiny bigotry and conspiracy claptrap. Plus an appalling lack of self-awareness. I went to college with kids who parachuted Adderall and it gave them a major boost in productivity, but that doesn’t mean Adderall makes them “see the whole puzzle.” You’re dishonestly conflating two things.

    Adderall is not a psychedelic. The main ingredient is methylphenidate which is a stimulant, not an entheogenic compound which gives people this glimpse of all the pieces or the puzzle of the Absolute, those visions seem to be exclusive to the classic psychedelics.

    I will argue all day long that this is an artifact of flower child culture and only tangentially related to the psychedelics themselves. Also, how in the actual fuck is this a response to my post? And why the fuck do you keep posting quotes that you already know won’t be compelling or meaningful to anyone?

    I realize it may sound hippie-dippie ’60s, but it’s really not. This is what they’re finding in the more modern research, too, or in the “psychedelic renaissance,” if you will.

  244. t90bb says

    So folks..after all that posturing about Matts beliefs being worthless because he lacks absolute certainty……oreo now claims he is a “mitigated skeptic”……..

    OREO said repeatedly that if your not absolutely certain of anything you cannot KNOW anything…….but then claims knowledge as a “mitigated skeptic”

    AND THERE YOU HAVE IT FOLKS….as dishonest as you can be!

    Hume contrasts ‘excessive’ scepticism with two forms of ‘mitigated’ scepticism, that can result from correcting excessive scepticism using common sense. The first form involves a change in how we hold our beliefs. It opposes dogmatic certainty, inspires modesty and caution, and attacks pride, prejudice, and disdain for people who disagree with us. Philosophy shows that the basis of our beliefs in reason is insecure.

    The second form of mitigated scepticism draws the conclusion that there are certain subjects that we cannot coherently enquire about. Reasoning can legitimately inform us about mathematics and particular matters of fact, existence and causation, that can be established by experience. But metaphysical enquiries, including the attempt to show the external exists (or does not) are impossible, while matters of religion are best founded on faith and revelation, not reason.

  245. t90bb says

    watch oreo try to change the subject..lol

    So folks..after all that posturing about Matts beliefs being worthless because he lacks absolute certainty……oreo now claims he is a “mitigated skeptic”……..

    OREO said repeatedly that if your not absolutely certain of anything you cannot KNOW anything…….but then claims knowledge as a “mitigated skeptic”

    AND THERE YOU HAVE IT FOLKS….as dishonest as you can be!

    Hume contrasts ‘excessive’ skepticism with two forms of ‘mitigated’ skepticism, that can result from correcting excessive skepticism using common sense. The first form involves a change in how we hold our beliefs. It opposes dogmatic certainty, inspires modesty and caution, and attacks pride, prejudice, and disdain for people who disagree with us. Philosophy shows that the basis of our beliefs in reason is insecure.

    The second form of mitigated skepticism draws the conclusion that there are certain subjects that we cannot coherently enquire about. Reasoning can legitimately inform us about mathematics and particular matters of fact, existence and causation, that can be established by experience. But metaphysical enquiries, including the attempt to show the external exists (or does not) are impossible, while matters of religion are best founded on faith and revelation, not reason.

  246. twarren1111 says

    Before I go, I want you to know that I’m being serious when I say the speed of light is the sole, measured, thus true and proven true, piece of data one needs for everything.

    Why? The speed of light is not fundamentally about speed, velocity, or acceleration and nor is it about light. The importance of E=MC2 is causality. If A causes B all observers will see the same causality in any inertial reference frame. Depending on the inertial reference frame, the two observers will NOT agree on issues of simultaneity (which features, Eg, in the law of indiscernibles which relates, Eg, to Leibniz as it does to Pauli’s exclusion principle), they will NOT agree as to timing or time, they may NOT even agree on the order of events, and they will NOT agree to the distances involved either.

    Thus, in any relationship between two entities, which I name A and B, the ONLY certainty is whether A causes B or B caused A or that they have no causal ratio. In other words, bc of the constant speed of light the one thing ALL OBSERVERS, INCLUDING A AND B WILL HAVE IS HOW A AND B RELATE IN TERMS OF CAUSALITY. And this is why math is the only language that cannot be lied in without it being figured out to be a lie.

    Eg, if I say the evidence is A = B then we can disagree about the dimensions of A and B but the one thing we will agree on is that they are equal.

    That’s what relativity and general relativity give us. All bc c = whatever Lamont Cranston said.

    And remember, light is wave and particle via the math. We get quantum mechanics from the study of light. We get then the idea of integers and so on.

    Anyway…that’s why when you got something 99.999999999% probability true and how things fit from their can lead to men on the moon or The Beatles.

    But John has to trust in the other 4 in how they see causality. It’s not faith bc overtime they experience things together that gives them confidence that the problem of induction is overcome until it’s not. It’s little wonder the break up the Beatles was so messy. And it’s interesting that at the end they all had their girlfriends in the study. That’s not the ratio of the Beatles. And they fell apart.

  247. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @twarren1111 #249:

    they will be replaced. So…why ban…

    That assumes any replacement would be equally asinine. We should expect higher standards of discourse from participants than Bayes vs “nuh-uh!”
     
    If someone repeatedly won’t respect other participants enough to adjust behavior when reasonably asked, informal suggestions escalate into formal enforcement.
     
    Bayes lectures could be addressed to anyone. Those blatherers are not special in this regard.
     
    Besides, responses to persistent filibustering yield diminishing returns.

  248. twarren1111 says

    #261 @oreoman
    You misspeak in terms of degrees. This is the wording I use:
    In any axiomatic system in math, there will be claims that are true but not provable. This does NOT MEAN that ALL the axioms are true AND unprovable! You are generalizing an equation to all of math!

    Remember what Godel did. He attached a unique number to all the statements in his proof. He then used the mathematics generated to show that he could not prove all true things. The sentence he used, expressed in math numbers, was “this statement is false”.

    Once you then understand the math logic Godel used, you will see how it led to Turing destroying ANOTHER of a Hilbert’s hopes about mathematics. You see, Hilbert wanted true things to be true and false things false but not true things false and vice versa. This was referred to as CONSISTENCY.

    He also wanted COMPLETENESS meaning a math conjecture was either proven to be true or false and no mixing.

    The THIRD thing is he wanted it DECIDABLE. Godel killed part 1 and 2 by 1925. I think it was 1907 when Hilbert outlines his vision for math.

    What turning showed is that any self-referential entity when applied to an algorithm will not halt Bc it is not decidable. He did this by feeding the algorithm “this statement is false” to a universal Turing machine and then arbitrarily labeled the output the opposite (Eg, he labeled it as halting if didn’t halt and vice versa). The result was a machine that continuously ran. Why? Bc if you use an input that refers to itself like “this statement is false” if you limit yourself to a binary outcome you will go into a blue screen of death bc the machine can’t decide. Why? Bc equivocation keeps happening. Why? Bc of how we defined things. And so on.

    But, again, the beauty of the scientific method to determine the rationality of ratios between two entities as opposed to the faith based method, is that over time your view of reality gets, well, really real. Hence: the one and only axiom needed for all of science from ten to the minus 43 seconds until right now is that the measured speed of light in a vacuum of a massless particle is constant. No matter how it’s been measured it keeps being one number. This is key: it is TRUE bc it’s PROVABLE and EVERY OBSERVER be it you, me, a bug, an intelligent life form in the Andromeda galaxy, to any rock anywhere in the universe, we all agree and measure the same exact thing the same quantity.

    See?

    The speed of light is QUALITATIVELY and QUANTITATIVELY the same FOR EVERY QUARK IN THE UNIVERSE. That means the same for EVERY INERTIAL REFERENCE FRAME.

    PROVABLE AND KNOWN TO BE TRUE.

    Please think about this bc you need to seriously update your probabilities on how EVERYTHING relates.

  249. twarren1111 says

    What accounts for the “irrational effectiveness of mathematics” as stated by Eugene Wigner is that it all stems from one thing and that is the information related to an energy we call the photon. Once you have a foundation like that, then Z-F-C set theory is not far behind.

    If we live in a rational universe, then it is possible that by some time frame of continued mastery of how to maximize time and energy via how we use entropy, that enough ‘bricks in the wall’ will be filled such that we get a pretty good picture of how the overall puzzle goes together.

    And if look back over where our science has taken us, and put together the best theory that fits all the data thus far, that theory is what I have been trying to espouse but find difficult to put into words. But it’s getting better.

    Anyway, Turing BTW proposed prior to his suicide a mechanism in which, IIRC, the 5 major patterns seen on animals like spots, stripes, solid, piebald, etc can be expressed mathematically. It was an amazing paper he wrote. IT took a long time, but several key experiments have been done that substantiate his model and in one animal model (I forget which one) a research group isolated proteins and how they are expressed that followed exactly the patterns Turing predicted in the 1950s.

    And what got Turing going was how he noticed the fibonacci sequence in nature so much. But you need to watch the woo. Yes, phi (the golden mean) is often seen in nature and mathematically is the most irrational irrational number. There are patterns in the world because why reinvent the wheel? Why not borrow ideas?? And that is what happens in evolution. How do we know a very good idea? When it evolves convergently. See? The exception (convergent evolution) comes from an exception that was noted and figured out).

    Anyway, that complexity that naturally arises is what confuses creationists’ arguments. And the evidence for why they are so susceptible to all these conspiracy theories is that irrational thinking begets irrational thinking with begets more and more irrational knowledge. Which, means, knowledge that does comport with reality. At some point, the house built this way falls.

  250. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @twarren1111 #246

    once in general u reach 95% or greater then you can be certain the hypothesis given the data is true.

     
    Article: Nature – Scientists rise up against statistical significance

    For several generations, researchers have been warned that a statistically non-significant result does not ‘prove’ the null hypothesis (the hypothesis that there is no difference between groups or no effect of a treatment on some measured outcome). Nor do statistically significant results ‘prove’ some other hypothesis.
    […]
    Let’s be clear about what must stop: we should never conclude there is ‘no difference’ or ‘no association’ just because a P value is larger than a threshold such as 0.05 or, equivalently, because a confidence interval includes zero. Neither should we conclude that two studies conflict because one had a statistically significant result and the other did not.
    […]
    In 2016, the American Statistical Association released a statement in The American Statistician warning against the misuse of statistical significance and P values. […] We agree, and call for the entire concept of statistical significance to be abandoned.
    […]
    We are not calling for a ban on P values. […] Rather, […] a stop to the use of P values in the conventional, dichotomous way – to decide whether a result refutes or supports a scientific hypothesis.
    […]
    The trouble is human and cognitive more than it is statistical: bucketing results into ‘statistically significant’ and ‘statistically non-significant’ makes people think that the items assigned in that way are categorically different. The same problems are likely to arise under any proposed statistical alternative that involves dichotomization, whether frequentist, Bayesian or otherwise.
    […]
    just because the interval gives the values most compatible with the data, given the assumptions, it doesn’t mean values outside it are incompatible; they are just less compatible. In fact, values just outside the interval do not differ substantively from those just inside the interval.

  251. oreoman1987 says

    twarren1111, It seems the ZFC axioms are used as the main foundation of mathematics today and only 2 out of the 10 axioms from that system are inconsistent. It be interesting if they could come up with a system that could get past Gödel’s incompleteness theroms.

  252. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I’m sorry. That’s one of the most outrageous things that I have ever heard. I think that’s even more outrageous than the statement “I don’t know why I wait for the ‘walk’ sign to be illuminated before crossing a busy street”. Did Oreo really just say that ZFC is obviously inconsistent? What the fuck am I reading?

    Again, please ban the obvious troll.

  253. says

    Fuck Alan Watts and fuck tolerating these endless cyclical apologetics and grandiose declarations of the nature of reality. Enough threads have been claimed by this rot.

    They (the apologetics themselves and the two current exponents) simultaneously claim a naive/open-minded innocent spirit of inquiry, and a universe-spanning intellectual perspective. If you’re just “seeking” or just asking honest questions (esp. if you’re also chiding skeptics for alleged intellectual crimes), you don’t also get to tell me you got the key to the Cosmos through serial hallucinations or the unstoppable force of your presuppositions. I think a little more humility is warranted.

  254. oreoman1987 says

    “Did Oreo really just say that ZFC is obviously inconsistent?“

    No. Just 2 out of the 10 axioms.
    Which would make it 80 percent complete.

  255. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Now I’m just too curious about what absurdities that you’re going to bring up. You’ve piqued my interest. What two axioms of ZFC are inconsistent? This should be good. It seems that you’re about to overthrow the last 100+ years of modern mathematics. /s

    PS: In the formal terminology of math, “inconsistent” is a property of a set of statements. If a set of two statements is inconsistent, then adding any third statement to the set still leaves the set inconsistent. There is no such thing as “80% consistent”. Either the set of statement is logically consistent, or it’s not.

  256. t90bb says

    watch oreo try to change the subject..lol

    So folks..after all that posturing about Matts beliefs being worthless because he lacks absolute certainty……oreo now claims he is a “mitigated skeptic”……..

    OREO said repeatedly that if your not absolutely certain of anything you cannot KNOW anything…….but then claims knowledge as a “mitigated skeptic”

    AND THERE YOU HAVE IT FOLKS….as dishonest as you can be!
    Hume contrasts ‘excessive’ skepticism with two forms of ‘mitigated’ skepticism, that can result from correcting excessive skepticism using common sense. The first form involves a change in how we hold our beliefs. It opposes dogmatic certainty, inspires modesty and caution, and attacks pride, prejudice, and disdain for people who disagree with us. Philosophy shows that the basis of our beliefs in reason is insecure.
    The second form of mitigated skepticism draws the conclusion that there are certain subjects that we cannot coherently enquire about. Reasoning can legitimately inform us about mathematics and particular matters of fact, existence and causation, that can be established by experience. But metaphysical enquiries, including the attempt to show the external exists (or does not) are impossible, while matters of religion are best founded on faith and revelation, not reason.

  257. indianajones says

    @El. My interest is not piqued. Professor Snape of Hogwarts no doubt has an internal logic as to why such and such a potion has to be stirred 3 1/2 times or it won’t work. What Oreo is trying to do analogously is take that and a apply it to the real world. ie take an entirely unsupported set of rules/proclivities/whatever which are entirely unexplained, don’t apply, fictional and only exist in his/analogously Rowlings head. It might even be worse than that in fact. Oreo might even be claiming that because pots and stirrers etc lead to not magic potion outcomes in the real world, as opposed to at Hogwarts, then the very existence of mixing tools is in question. Or that pots sometimes break and are therefore useless.

    Either way, who cares? Bertrand Russell spends several hundred pages proving ‘1+1 = 2’ and does it without assuming the existence of numbers. I don’t have the chops to be able to pick holes in it, it may not have holes at all. And yet I am sure of the true-ness of the conclusion. And I am 100% certain (yes, you read that correctly) that anyone here, including Oreo, is too. Any argument mounted by Oreo for his little hobby horse is of the order of equating well known tools for examining the world with counting potion stirs and very occasionally fallible pots. And I don’t care how he gets there.

    http://intersci.ss.uci.edu/wiki/eBooks/BOOKS/Russell/Principia%20Mathematica%20I%20Russell.pdf

  258. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To indianajones
    Lol. As you should know, I am a glutton for punishment.

    I would still not mind at all if those two were both permanently banned.

  259. speedofsound says

    @Oreoman

    Being a mitigated skeptic, I know for certain that the external world is real and that other belief systems exist because with this position I can deduce all of it.

    I’ll explain it further later today.

    WTF? Where is your explaining? I went to bed early in good faith knowing that I would wake up to a bunch of ‘splaining. WTF? I am so sad right now!

  260. indianajones says

    @EL ‘Glutton for punishment’ sure. But at this point, and I go back to my @19, I am okay with indulging a 4 year old with the ‘why’ questions. But I am not okay with indulging someone with enough cognitive function to be able to type at least with the same (analogously again) question.

    @Oreo. Yes, at this point, I accuse you of pretending at having the cognitive function of a 4 year old for the lulz.

  261. t90bb says

    285 speed….

    At this point do you really care what oreo has to say..??? Hes been shown to be an ass clown…..dishonest as you will find here….he ran matt into the ground by straw manning matt into claiming matt claimed (knowledge) absolute certainty…..when he did not….

    Oreo spent hundreds of posts explaining the prob of hard solipsism could not be overcome and that all positions were merely faith….and therefore worthless

    When he was called out on why he does not jump from tall buildings or why he rallies against islam he found himself caught in a bind……..after claiming faith and knowledge claims/science where worthless……it was shown he lives very much like the rest of us even though he lacked absolute certainty…….

    Then she doubled back and claimed HE DOES has absolute certainty for many things because he has a GETTIER defeater (bet we can guess what that is since he has brought up SYE TEN Overbite)….when pressed about it he claims that he can claim absolute certainty because he is a “mitigated skeptic”……lol……

    First, she said all beliefs are mere faith and worthless…since they are faith they have zero value……..he repeatedly denied that he lives just as we all do (lacking certainty but utilizing the best tools available while recognizing we could be wrong……).

    When caught..the pussy backtracks and claims hes a mitigated skeptic…..what a total pussy. He makes decisions and draws inferences just like the rest of us. Which is what we have been telling him and he denied for hundreds of posts.

    Took a while to get there….how this relates to whether or not a god exists you will have to ask dummy. I think I know what he actually believes but I suspect we all do….

    What a total dishonest coward she is. If he had any balls hed call Matt and have a discussion.

    watch oreo try to change the subject..lol

    REMINDER:

    So folks..after all that posturing about Matts beliefs being worthless because he lacks absolute certainty……oreo now claims he is a “mitigated skeptic”……..

    OREO said repeatedly that if your not absolutely certain of anything you cannot KNOW anything…….but then claims knowledge as a “mitigated skeptic”
    AND THERE YOU HAVE IT FOLKS….as dishonest as you can be!

    Hume contrasts ‘excessive’ skepticism with two forms of ‘mitigated’ skepticism, that can result from correcting excessive skepticism using common sense. The first form involves a change in how we hold our beliefs. It opposes dogmatic certainty, inspires modesty and caution, and attacks pride, prejudice, and disdain for people who disagree with us. Philosophy shows that the basis of our beliefs in reason is insecure.

    The second form of mitigated skepticism draws the conclusion that there are certain subjects that we cannot coherently enquire about. Reasoning can legitimately inform us about mathematics and particular matters of fact, existence and causation, that can be established by experience. But metaphysical enquiries, including the attempt to show the external exists (or does not) are impossible, while matters of religion are best founded on faith and revelation, not reason.

  262. speedofsound says

    @t90bb (#287)

    But metaphysical enquiries, including the attempt to show the external exists (or does not) are impossible,

    I have a real issue with this sort of talk.

  263. twarren1111 says

    #272 @CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain
    Your observation that with banning at least the replacement(s) have a probability of being more rational.
    Yes, I can’t argue with that. I would second the motion to ban but would still vote present in the final vote…

    #275 @CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain
    You linked to an excellent article (and I’m not just saying that because it is Nature, but, frankly, only Nature or Science could publish an article like this and get it to be taken seriously and of the two top journals, Nature is the better the choice. It is a short read and very understandable.

    Another issue in how we report studies: only positive results tend to get published. Indeed, a joke about journals is that the New England Journal of Medicine should be renamed The Journal of Positive Results.

    I used the language of dichotomy when explaining the p value. But it must be noted that what the Nature article discusses is much more subtle and thus accurate accounting of what significance means.

    I will hear this often in conferences: “while the p value did not reach a 0.05 threshold the trend in the data suggest that therapy A was superior to therapy B.”

    Plus, there is a drug called Xeloda that underwent many, many, many trials. This drug is a pill that is an oral form of the IV version. The IV version was all we had for 60 years. What the studies showed is that in all measures that Xeloda was ‘always on top’ of the IV medication but the p value was always ‘non-significant’. The pharmacology of Xeloda is that the way it is activated in the liver, this drug that you take orally every 12 hours stays in the blood stream as if the person was receiving a continuous infusion of the IV medication 24/7. So, when you get the 20th study done that shows that overall survival with Xeloda is ‘non-inferior’ to IV but they can’t say the number of people alive on the Xeloda arm that are dead on the IV arm is real because the p value is greater than 0.05. But…so…we’d expect that Xeloda is superior to IV because you are achieving IV dosing better with an oral medication….but actually proving that the p value is lower than 0.05 isn’t worth the resources. We know the med is non-inferior in all ways tested, including overall survival, so giving the drug orally wins because it is so much easier for everyone…now if they just hadn’t priced it $3000 a prescription (and many patients are on the medication for years)….

    In my next post, I am going to link to a recent article about induction in science. It fits right on to the Nature article and everything that this blog has been discussing. I hope it is helpful for Oreoman1987 too.

  264. John Iacoletti says

    We are getting a load of complaints.

    Kafei and Oreoman, please keep your remarks at least somewhat related to the content of the episodes on which you are commenting.

    t90bb, stop using the word “pussy” (or any other sexist term) as a personal attack.

    Everyone else, if people aren’t engaging honestly, then stop engaging with them.

  265. paxoll says

    That was the most useful thing you have posted twarren1111 :D, j/k. But yea it kinda was.

  266. twarren1111 says

    #276 @Oreoman1987
    THAT IS A COMMENT THAT WE AGREE 100% OVER!!!!!!! AND I MEAN WITHOUT IRONY OR SNARKY STUFF!!!!!

    Oreo, take a look at the wikipedia page for speed of light. I’m not being facetious. I just looked at the other day for the first time and even though not one piece of information on that page was novel it was seeing it together that was cool. And it has filtered over with how we most recently decided to define the meter as a measure of the speed of light. It is the finiteness of the number and what it relates to that bridges the areas of energy (bosons) to matter (fermions) to time (c) to length…the one constant that bridges all 4 dimensions of spacetime is the finite speed of light.

    So…doesn’t that mean that the way for the foundation that Hilbert wanted is to make the fundamental axiom of math as “the speed of a massless particle in a vacuum 300,000,000 m/s (or whatever Lamont Cranson says)”.

    I’m actually being serious here and I am NOT a mathematician. My mom used to brag that it took me ‘5 hours a night sweating blood to do my calculus homework’. I wasn’t diagnosed with ADD until I was 47 years old and getting education and treatment has had a profound effect. I was finally able to tell my mom, “mom, remember how long it took me to do calculus in 12th grade? That was a bug, not a feature”

    The point is that we had to learn enuf, we had to fill in enuf bricks in the wall to finally approach the problem from such a different direction that we finally understand why the universe is the way it is. Once we have the speed of light as a finite, calculable number, and because of what the photon is in particle physics, quantum mechanics, Newtonian physics, and Einsteinian physics (i.e., Special and General Relativity), because the 4 dimensions are emergent (time and distance emerge) from whatever E energy is (a string?? A boson….graviton…dark energy??, etc, etc), and because what links all of these concepts is what entropy/information is, it makes sense that the mathematical constant we call c is the one value that spans all these ratios (aka, equations, ratio(nality)).

    Anyway…that’s my woo…well, I shouldn’t say that…but my hypothesis is that everything is linked thru c. And if that is the case (as it seems to be, because all the data that forms the basis for that wikipedia page on the speed of light is, basically, all our knowledge collected to date) then we have a foundation for all our knowledge that is based upon a concept that is Consistent, Complete, and Decidable. And it makes sense that we had to get ‘outside’ the set that contains all sets.

    You see, if there actually isnt in reality any infinity then in reality there is no such thing as an infinite regree. The essence of Russell’s paradox is that no matter how you construct your set, you cannot have a set that is not a member of itself. Well, that is true as long as something in the set is self-referential. Because, we we have discussed, when you have one self-referential aspect to your system you will eventually end up locked into a non-halting state.

    And, fundamentally, nothing exists if it is not moving. Eg, that box that has sat in the corner of that room has moved. It is on earth. Moving thru space. That is the idea between the law of indiscernibles. Remember, we need to MOVE to exist…and that is why the tesseract cartoon on the Hamming Distance page in wikipedia is graphically what time is. You have one cube connected to another cube that is idential except that it has a different 4th digit describing its location.

    Anyway, but, what if the universe is finite. If the universe did experience a Big Bang that suggests that the universe came froma finite amount of energy. Immense, yes. But not infiinite. Besides, conservation laws. Yes, I know I am getting before Planck Time in the Big Bang but….think of it this way: right now there are NOT an infinite grains of sand on the beaches of Britain. If you started counting the grains you would never finish because of scale and the idea that grains are being constantly created and destroyed, etc, that no human could count each grain and would say the value is infinite.

    Anyway, the idea of infinite is interesting for many reasons but my point is that the concept behind string theory is intriguing and difficult to give up. Indeed, despite the problems of testability, the findings and predictions that M-Theory have made are incredible. But we are stuck. Loop Quantum Gravity is building in credibility. And, we are also seeing the mathematics of the how the big bang could work lead to the idea of a recurrent bouncing universe. Eg, it could be that the creation and growth of black holes could be behind the accelerating expansion of the universe. One of the things Lee Smolen pointed out that would be predicted by LQG is that such a universe would be breed black holes. The theory also predicts that, IIRC, a neutron star or some other type of specific star would never be bigger or denser than a certain amount…and so far we havent found a larger/denser star in that category. Well, it was reported just last week that LIGO has already, like with in a week of re-opening already caught more black holes merging.

    The story behind LIGO is fascinating but suffice to know that we have gone from Einsten refuses to initially accept singularities to Wheeler naming them Black Holes in the 1960s to detecting the first black hole (IIRC) in 1972 to finding 4 black hole collusions in the first two weeks LIGO opened. Plus, LIGO confirmed a whole range of black hole sizes that we did not know even existed.

    So….maybe what is accelerating the universe expansion is the big bang followed much later by a universe that breeds black holes and as these black holes coalesce, eventually, we end up back at a single black hole forming but that can’t happen because…..and that is a hypothesis.

    My point: the root ‘string’ mathematically appears to be whatever is at the root of the photon…in other words, what is ever at the root of it all…and if that is the case then we have ended the ‘infinite regression’ haven’t we? If we live in a quantized universe as all the evidence supports then we should get to what we are seeking in the quantum to relativitistic world and already we have seen enough to attribute math to the finite speed of light.

    And doing so, because that is the ‘thing’ everything emerges from then that, by defnition, IS the set…it IS THE BOUNDARY OF THE SET…and remember, in all larger scales of geometry the boundary of a boundary is null…AT LEAST UNTIL YOU GET TO THE SMALLEST PIECE OF THE UNIVERSE AND IT TURNS OUT TO BE ONE THING THAT EVERYTHING ELSE EMERGES FROM.

    And that stops the circularity of infinte regression, that is the ultimate stop for induction (as well as for deduction)…anyway….later.

  267. speedofsound says

    If Kafei wants to keep going he should stick to one of the older threads that have already ‘gone over’. Like 23.14. I still have fun with him so would respond over there. I am reluctant as I don’t want to irritate everyone. He is a wonderful piece of believerism and don’t want to lose him. It’ s hard to train up a good lab rat.

  268. t90bb says

    288 speed…I think that refers to hard solipsism Reason cant get us to absolute certainty. Most of us agree with that. Most of us have grown to live and accept (at least temporarily) that absolute certainty appears impossible (other than our own existence).

    Oreo says he does no things with absolute certainty because he has a Gettier defeater……..and we have all been waiting with much anticipation as he can know things with absolute certainty………

    He apparently knows with certainty that Islam isists and that Islam can be or is..bad and dangerous. How does he know this with absolute certainty??? LOLOLOOLOLOLL

  269. RationalismRules says

    #291

    Everyone else, if people aren’t engaging honestly, then stop engaging with them.

    Both on the show and on the blog John doesn’t say a lot, but what he does say is inevitably right on the money.

  270. RationalismRules says

    @twarren1111 #290
    Thanks for that link. I agree with your assessment – it’s well-written and concise. Worth bookmarking for future posters who misrepresent science.

    Cookieboy will never accept it because his entire argument is founded on the strawman that science claims to be a path to ultimate truth. To acknowledge that it doesn’t would render meaningless his entire oeuvre on this blog.

  271. says

    Unlike the hosts, AXP commenters don’t have the “you’re done – CLICK” option, rather, we’re dependent on our own fallible willpower when it comes to disengaging with stupid arguments and unevidenced claims of deep philosophical insight.

    But that’s where mods should enter (if, for example, if several people over multiple threads ask them to) and shitcan the bad actors and the repeat offenders. Not primarily to save us from ourselves (though that is a positive result), but to keep the threads free of the conversational detritus & associated acrimony that’s been clogging shit up.

    In short, a timeout from Kafei’s incessant Alan Watts/CME/tripping balls derails would be appreciated. I visit threads to follow up AXP topics, not dive into a whirlpooling cesspit of post-Aquarian ghost-fuckery.

  272. Lamont Cranston says

    RationalismRules says

    Both on the show and on the blog John doesn’t say a lot, but what he does say is inevitably right on the money.

    Amen… oops, Well, you know what I mean. 🙂

    Over the last couple of weeks there have been specific calls I would have liked to have discussed, but I refrained from doing so because it seemed pointless to even try. Maybe next week… maybe never. Guess I’ll just see how it goes.

    Lamont Cranston

  273. speedofsound says

    288 speed…I think that refers to hard solipsism Reason cant get us to absolute certainty. Most of us agree with that. Most of us have grown to live and accept (at least temporarily) that absolute certainty appears impossible (other than our own existence).

    It does. Among other bad ideas. I spend a lot of time mounting arguments against the casual acceptance of meta-ontologies like solipsism and on the problem with the very use of ideas like certainty. It gets my back up when we just, of course, give these things a nod.

    The issues are tied up in an equal casual acceptance of sense data and ‘the given’. I accept few of these things without a lot of kicking and screaming. 🙂 One of my hobby horses and I have a whole herd of them.

  274. RationalismRules says

    @Lamont Cranston #300

    Over the last couple of weeks there have been specific calls I would have liked to have discussed, but I refrained from doing so because it seemed pointless to even try.

    I’ve always thought that even when the likes of Kafefei and Cookiemonster are spamming the blog, worthwhile conversations can still happen between those who are interested. It’s disappointing, though understandable, to learn that you have held back because of them.

    I wonder if one of the reasons people give attention to the spammers is because there aren’t more interesting conversations going on. A vicious circle…

  275. buddyward says

    @RationalismRules 302

    I wonder if one of the reasons people give attention to the spammers is because there aren’t more interesting conversations going on. A vicious circle…

    I believe that people tend to shy away from the threads because they see Kafei and\or Oreoman around. Telling people to ignore them is like telling someone not to scratch an annoying rash. As evidenced by a number of posts in this thread alone, people are avoiding threads that includes either or both of those individuals. I cannot blame them, who would want to be in a thread where blatant dishonesty is allowed? If the only recourse we have is to ignore them and they continue to hijack each and every thread, then more and more people will opt not to participate. I hope that does not happen but I for one do not think it is worth my time anymore.

    Hoping that people here do not let the theists succeed in trying to sabotage this blog.

    Cheers

  276. Lamont Cranston says

    RationalismRules says in #302

    I wonder if one of the reasons people give attention to the spammers is because there aren’t more interesting conversations going on. A vicious circle…

    Perhaps this is so. For me I would find it much more interesting to focus on one of the calls rather than discussing esoteric rationalizations that actually have nothing to do with why anyone actually believes in a god.

    I just finished writing several paragraphs discussing one of the calls, concluded posting it would be pointless under the current conditions and deleted the whole thing. Maybe I’ll try again someday. Maybe not.

    Lamont Cranston

  277. jabbly says

    Well back to the show, why is it that so many religious types are so keen for evolution not to be true. I can understand it if you’re a YECer but otherwise where is the problem. As far as I know none of the big religions are incompatible with evolution given the capacity to take meaning in a non-literal sense, nor indeed would evolution being completely wrong lead to the conclusion that therefore my version of god is true.

  278. jabbly says

    @twarren #290 Nice post, particularly the comment about I can ignore it when I choose. My favourite answer to this problem though is it seems to work so until you can come up with something better then I’m going with it.

  279. indianajones says

    @305 I can only imagine it might be because it would imply that God didn’t get it right the first time.

  280. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To jabbly
    I suspect that it’s about meaning in life, and the existence of an afterlife, in equal measure.

    One of the biggest fears from conservative religious people is the notion that we’re all just a freak accident, with no foresight, with no plan. In their mind, if we are not created, then there’s no cosmic lawgiver, no cosmic punisher, and that terrifies them. IMO, it’s because they all have an authoritarian mindset that is unable to comprehend what it might mean to live life according to principles of empathy, morality, and fairness, and valuing that for its own sake. Instead, they’ve been raised and taught in an authoritarian mindset, where “you do what is right because you will be punished if you don’t” is the standard mode of operation, and the idea “you do what is right because you choose to because of empathy and compassion and wanting to make a better world for other people” is an incomprehensible concept.

    At least, that’s my best guess.

    I will also note that Matt Dillahunty correctly notes that every religious argument almost always devolves down into an argument over morality. It’s not about the facts. They don’t really care about the facts. What this is an argument about is an argument between competing moral worldviews. On our side is the moral worldview that we are just accidents, and we are responsible to no one but each other, and life is unfair, but we can choose to make it better for our own sake. On their side is the childish moral worldview where people do what is right because they are told to do what is right by a parental figure who will punish them otherwise. I mean it when I say “childish”. This is the view of a young child before they grow up. This religious worldview is an incredibly immature worldview of a young child before they grow up and learn personal responsibility.

    So, when you’re arguing with a young Earth creationist, try to remember that the real argument is probably not about the facts, and the real argument is about how much the idea of “no god” scares the everliving shit out of them, because they are (wrongly) convinced that a world without god would be a horrific place of immorality, crime, violence, etc., or they think that a world without god would be horrifically unjust because many evil people could do evil and get away with it, and profit from that evil, and never have to face punishment for their evil actions. Yes, it’s all the same incredibly fallacious argument of “appeal to consequences”, but IMO that’s how the mind of many, perhaps most, religious creationists work.

    PS: I’m probably overgeneralizing here, but this is undoubtably true of many creationists.

  281. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I should probably plug the excellent talk by Ken Miller about creationism and “intelligent design” who makes this same point in this talk.

  282. Qbert says

    Reality Check: This isn’t a sweaty high school debate. The mods aren’t here to declare a winner for a disagreement and give you a hearty handshake to commemorate your victory. And they’re happy to stop people who spam – but it isn’t spam if you insist on making it a conversation.

    I’d be willing to bet that a number of people stepped away from the blog not simply because Oreoman/Kafei were allowed to post – but because of what the resulting, histrionic logorrhea reveals about what gets the juices of the “like-minded” community flowing.

    If Kafei and Oreoman are hijacking a thread, it’s with your enthusiastic, dog-who-loves-them-squirrels-most-of-all participation.

  283. speedofsound says

    If you deny or disparage evolution it’s a lot easier to think of yourself as a kind of an ideal being. We do not usually want to think about what’s inside of us or how we are a continuum with all the fang and filigree of biological life. The second part of evolution denial is that it puts science into the category of cooking and clever craft making. Science has nothing to say about the glory of life and humanity. Science doesn’t understand or science doesn’t get it.

    There is an odd infestation in science of greedy reduction. You will hear things like ‘just matter’ or ‘just blind chance’. Always with the ‘just’. This is a failure or rather a stubborn denial of imagination in considering how this just-matter stuff combines and swirls in hyper-complexity. I think a lot of this stems from our recent history in thinking about materialism as some sort of greed and selfishness. If you worship matter than somehow you are morally inclined to steal all the sandwiches for yourself. You will hear many statements on the show that hint at this.

    It’s like we have this tribal division in morality. Science is required to find for selfishness and ego. If you dwell too much on what’s inside of us and how we evolved then you must be in the greed tribe.

    Watching movies from the 1950’s and 60’s is an education in how pop culture has come to think about science and scientists. You will see the scientist being portrayed as this nerdy genius, so smart that he is an idiot in manly and normal matters of life. Reading books is not what real men do. Then the nerdy science guys fucks up the world and real men have to save it with guns.

    So I am going to consider this underlay of culture and watch some clips. Look for some clues.

  284. jabbly says

    Thanks for all the replies as they are food for thought. Having grown up in the U.K. you really don’t get exposed to certain schools of religious thought processes.

  285. Ian Butler says

    “I wonder if one of the reasons people give attention to the spammers is because there aren’t more interesting conversations going on. A vicious circle”

    The problem is, any attempt at an “interesting conversation” will get lost in 300 off-topic, redundant comments of mindless drivel. It’s like finding hay in a needlestack. There was plenty to discuss from this week’s show, but I wasn’t going to compete with those two. I’ll give a try next week, hopefully John’s warning will help.

  286. buddyward says

    @QBert 310

    This isn’t a sweaty high school debate. The mods aren’t here to declare a winner for a disagreement and give you a hearty handshake to commemorate your victory.

    Who here said that mods are supposed to declare victory? Perhaps you can reiterate what it is that people asking from the mods. That way we would know what you understand about this situation.

  287. t90bb says

    310…ErnielovesBERT

    Theres some truth to that. Problem is…many do walk away or do not respond in an effort to discourage/sanction people like OREO/Kafei……..and it only takes a few like myself to continue to engage them that ruins the efforts of others. This board is like others…trying to get everyone on the same page is like herding cats.

    Can you show me anyone who asked the mods to “declare victory” because I might have missed that. Perhaps you imagined it…

    I believe there where more calls for sanctions for clear dishonesty and insincerity than for spamming…..

    Perhaps you are disappointed because you enjoy the free for all as much as I do sometime, and your worried that order may kill the entertainment. Did your game boy and Nintendo both break???

    LOL…..ps….nice to meet ya!

  288. t90bb says

    As for the go to topic of theists..evolution…..

    Its clear that they are convinced there is just as much evidence for their magic genie as there is for evolution.

    My older brother is a part time Pastor for a church in NJ. He has lectured my family for years about evolution being a hoax. My brother barely graduated high school be the skin of his teeth and has not a drop of scientific education. Every bit of his “knowledge” about evolution was spoon fed by an older male pastor (HMMMM??), and apologetic websites.

    He told me the other day that evolution was preposterous, and that he was well versed in both science and biology. In front of my entire family the other day I asked if he could, to the best of his ability and in his own words, describe the scientific method. He had absolutely no idea what I was referring to or asking him about……

    typical…..

    evolution is a great deflector when the theists’ arguments are inadequate or flat out refuted…..

  289. buddyward says

    @t90bb 316

    Have you ever asked your brother why he is trying to debunk evolution? Has he had any interest in debunking other scientific theories like, gravity, the germ theory of disease, the earth being a round, etc.? What is his motivation in telling you that the evolution is false?

  290. t90bb says

    317…buddy….

    Hes totally convinced that the earth is 6k to 10k years old. He, like most Christians believe they have the correct interpretation and understanding of their holey book(s) (even though their interpretations directly conflict each other)…..and as such, is positive the bible indicates creation took place in 7, or 6…literal 24 hour days…..

    Obviously if evolution is true, his understanding of the hokey babble’s genesis account is wrong. And if he came to believe evolution were true, then it would be possible that lots of his other interpretations of other versus could be wrong as well. And that would probably be too much work to re evaluate all the positions he has claimed hes certain of….

    So I assume he needs to knock evolution so that his “understanding” of scripture can be maintained as it is. If he were to research and find he needed to re assess, I suspect it would rock him to his core.

    My brother has no real interest in learning……Hes happy being woefully ignorant so that his faith may be maintained…….

    When discussing evolution the first thing he raises are issues relating to how life came to be. I have explained dozens of times that the theory of evolution makes no claims about how life began……. but he makes sure to entangle evolution and abiogenesis and all attempts to separate these go over his head intentionally or unintentionally. He needs to keep abiogenesis on equal footing with evolution so as to confuse them…….since abiogenesis is a mere hypothesis that lacks the mountains of evidence evolution has.

    I have also explained that whether evolution occurred has no bearing on whether a god exists or not. Even if evolution was proven false tomorrow his belief would still need to be justified as true. Proving evolution false does not prove chistianity true…Belief in god and/or Christianity needs to be supported on its own evidence. I have tried to explain this works in reverse as well. That is, if Christianity was proven false, it would not therefore prove evolution true.

    In Christianity and other religious faiths….blindness is blissful.. They are happy with the narrative the have.

    I also asked him if his research of evolution was truly balanced. Meaning pulling mostly equally from his apologetics and mainstream science/academia. He assured me it was. When I asked him if he could summarize some of his research outside of apologetic sites (books by non Christian scientists, peer reviewed research papers talks with experts), he could not.

    Finally he no longer wanted to discuss evolution and ended the discussion by saying “you can believe what you want”.

    Like I needed his permission lol.

    Sorry this was more of a rant…….I just notice when speaking to theists about Gods existence, when things aren’t going well….they bail from issues at hand and run to evolution.

    If they can frame evolution as preposterous…..then the idea of a magical sky wizard seems no more preposterous and that’s how they smuggle in their belief/faith. Most rational and reasonable people who take the time will find evolution well substantiated and cross confirmed through many many disciplines of science…..not so much for sky wizard.

    “The bible says it, I believe it. That’s settles it”

    But to your point, no. He does not appear to challenge other well established theories. I assume because he does not perceive them as much a threat to his stance on the holey babble.

    I realize my brother is not unique. I remember watching Ken haim debate the science guy. They were both asked what would it take to change your minds?? Bill Nye said “evidence”. And Haim said “Nothing because I am a Christian”

  291. speedofsound says

    @ t90bb

    I realized in about 2nd grade that I was fatally different from my classmates. I could get on my belly and stare at a patch of dirt for an hour and they just thought I was nuts. I started staring at plants too. Men who stare at plants. And rocks and everything else. I was starting to get a rep of being good at science.

    I remember our science book had this idiot looking dude in thick rimmed glasses and a lab coat. I started to see myself that way. Around third grade I made an actual decision to be a badass instead and joined up with a world of rebellion and hurt that pretty much wasted my life.

    Last night I tried to get my great-niece, who is a UofMn student of eco-biology, interested in evo-devo and molecular morphogenesis. My failure was epic. I probably came off as a babbling idiot.

    You mentioned your brother in high school. Therein lies the difference I think. There is a spark of interest that some have for the details of physicality and they are the ones that start to really love science. I love it like a religion for fucks sake. All of that starry eyed glory about man and goodness that religious people get, I get from staring at a twig and imagining molecules.

    If you proved to me that the twig and all reality was magicked into my brain and that it had no molecules, just a surface bit of sense data, I would probably blow my head off.

    So what we have here is at the end of the day an emotional attachment to our imaginative well-spring and we dearly love the one that quenches our thirst for this sort of thing.

    The xtian would blow his head off if you proved to him that it was all just the gray matter and chance he imagines science to be talking about. He would lose his magic as I would lose mine above.

    Now I have spent my life bringing that magic from one side of the fence to the other. I’m one of those fucks that say I am spiritual but not religious. Or I would if I saw it as being that simple. All of the magic of being human is not lost to me because I believe we generated from alkaline vents and evolved to get here. In fact the magic seems to me to be astronomically better magic in a few important ways. One, it’s actually happening and can be shown to be true in an absolutely consistent way. Second, it’s far beyond the insipid imaginings of zap-it-into-being-with-a-wand magic. How fucking boring is that? Third, the exploration of the patterns within patterns never ends. Science is the true neverending story.

    It’s a complex fractal of hierarchies and still, in those hierarchies lies all of the glory of human emotion and morality. But that’s just one little tiny humble bit of magic, this human magic, nestled in an infinitude of fractals as big as the cosmos.

    What we have here with xtians is a failure to imagine reality in such a way that it’s not only true but rich and emotional as well. The deconversion must come with a replacement. The fear of loss of humanity must be dealt with. Somehow we must give them a view of ‘gray matter’ that is as multi-colorful as what they now have or more.

    Another of my hobby-horse ideas here is that we must address this need for ‘spirit’ when dealing with our xtian friends. Words like spiritual must be redefined and made compatible with the reality we have discovered to be true in this last hundred years. We must show that you can have the cake and eat it.

  292. RationalismRules says

    @speedofsound #319

    we must address this need for ‘spirit’ when dealing with our xtian friends. Words like spiritual must be redefined and made compatible with the reality we have discovered to be true in this last hundred years.

    The deconversion must come with a replacement. The fear of loss of humanity must be dealt with. Somehow we must give them a view of ‘gray matter’ that is as multi-colorful as what they now have or more.

    Yeah right, and doctors must redefine homeopathy to make it compatible with real medicine. And they need to come up with some fantasy replacement for homeopathy, because the believers in homeopathy can’t be expected to just accept that medicine works, and exorbitantly priced water with ‘memory’ is bullshit, just because it’s demonstrably bullshit.
    /s

  293. t90bb says

    319….Speed…..like you I find the world no less amazing since I lack belief in a ultimate divine creator of everything.

    The word spirituality is a word I have spent a lot of time thinking about. As an active member of AA for about 15 years they throw that word around quite a bit. I often ruffle feathers when I share that I find the term meaningless. Ask 50 members to define the term and you will likely get close to 50 significantly different answers. Its like the word “miracle” in AA. They throw that word around in a similar way. If you never got a DUI it was a miracle. If you are alive today that is a miracle. If you have not had a drink today its a miracle. LOL. Pull them aside and ask them to define what they are referring to by the term “miracle” you often get a blank stare.

    For me….the word spirituality simply refers to ones perspective. Specifically, our perspective on how we relate to ourselves and other things. I suppose that if one is inclined to believe in the sky wizard….ones relation to it would be included in that persons perspective and be covered by what other people call spirituality.

    I fell into the claim that I was spiritual but not religious for a while. I try to avoid that since, as stated, I find the term close to meaningless. Rather than saying I had a spiritual experience in AA, I say I had a perspective changing experience. My perspective on life and how to best live it was changed due to my efforts to better understand who I was and who I wanted to become. I came to realize that allowing myself to honestly appraise my character, I came to see that many of my patterns of thought and behavior was causing me distress. I chose to experiment with the collective wisdom of those similar and found relief. I do believe any divine being played a role in any of it. Honest discourse, open mindedness, and willingness to experiment with recommendations of others seem to be the fulcrum of my change in perspective. There is no doubt some aspect of tribalism involved. Unlike many of my fellows in AA, I have gone outside of the “program” for help in many areas of my life….

    All said…..secularism is on the rise within 12 step fellowships. Some aspect of what is performed is undeniably helpful to many. Still, I am often looked at as a threat by many members. Many, I have no doubt would like to see me relapse so I could be totally broken down and at that point perhaps engage in a relationship with their genie. They are convinced without god no one can be fulfilled or genuinely happy. My voice in many groups, they think, encourages choice between a god based recovery and an attempt at sobriety without a belief in god. As they see my recovery as nothing more than a dead end they feel my message is an extreme danger to the newcomer.

    So I know what many are thinking. “why do you attend, tom?”

    Because for me although I find much of the magical thinking foolish, there is enough other stuff there to be helpful. I have found strong helpful and loving friendships there and my occasional attendance reminds me that my body and or mind seems to have a peculiar and dangerous reaction to certain substances. I have started several “free thinking/agnostic meetings” in NJ to the disdain of many, lol.

    This all morphed from a discussion of the term “spirituality”? LOL. my apologies.

    But speed, to people like my brother science can be a big threat to his interpretations of the bible. He wants to believe its all perfectly understood by him. Hes bought into a 6-10k year old earth. He has boasted about how foolish it is to teach such silliness as evolution in schools. He is VESTED in his version of understanding. It has become a huge part of his self identity. He no doubt recognizes certain aspects of his faith have improved his life and then his belief becomes reinforced and circular.

    At one point he insisted there has never been a transitional fossil ever discovered. I invited him to a weekend in New York to visit the museum of natural history all expenses paid. He declined, lol.

    Ignorance is bliss.

    I am always sure to remind him and others that I am not an expert on anything. And I could be wrong about anything. I am willing to learn and examine new information and evidence on any topic. The freedom to change my mind and admit I was wrong is a freedom I absolutely cherish.

  294. t90bb says

    CONSIDER THIS SCENERIO

    A god forced a group of people on to an airplane. The planned flight was to cross an ocean. God knows the exact fuel needs for this plane to successfully cross and land…..the plane has no emergency gear because that’s the way God wanted it.

    But God decides to only put half the required fuel in the plane. That is, he knows the plain will run out of fuel half way across. He insists that this ride be taken.

    Half way across the engine fails and the plane dips into the ocean. He, as part of the plan, ensured all will survive the initial crash The passengers are bobbing in terror in the ocean struggling to survive.

    God appears in the sky over them with armfuls of life preservers….he holds them over them tantalizing them. He says he will give each a life preserver only if they will praize him and believe that scooby doo is real…..

    How is this dissimilar to the twisted narrative of the bible???? God creates and sets up the entire scenario. God of the bible makes man knowing all about its limitations and weaknesses. Its designed to have them! God knows exactly what will tempt humans and understands their breaking point. He absolutely knows that if he creates man, puts him in the garden with eve, and adds the serpent…..THAT MAN WILL FALL! He knows this because God knows everything!!! past present and future! God cannot be surprised if hes all knowing, If God CHOOSES not to know certain things as some xtians suggest then he is not all knowing!!

    So the God of the bible sets this all up….its like he has wound up a toy soldier placed it on a table and tells it not to walk off the edge!

    And then when said toy falls off the edge…or in this case eats the Apple…….HOLEYYYYYY FUCKKKKKKKKKK!!!! YOU DID WHATTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!

    If the bible is true it could only be concluded that he SET up man to fail….there was no actual choice just the illusion of free will as perceived by man. Its like a carpenter cutting a piece of wood to a specification and then claiming the wood decided on its length..lol…

    Was the biblical god in need of a puppy dog? did it feel so unlovable that it needed to set up a situation where it was NEEDED rather than wanted??

    God of the babble created satan, a being that would later be its arch nemesis?? But it knows all?? Past present and future??? Is god a masochist??

    “the fall of man” can only be concluded to be a completely orchestrated and designed event by the sky wizard. If god was attempting to design something other than what happened then he flunked.

    This is why I feel its not even needed to discuss the reasonableness of Jesus and the reser ERECTION.

    The opening chapters in Genesis are all that’s really needed to be discussed to conclude that the biblical god is a twisted m’fer, and utter buffoon, and / or does not exist.

  295. Monocle Smile says

    @speedofsound

    The xtian would blow his head off if you proved to him that it was all just the gray matter and chance he imagines science to be talking about. He would lose his magic as I would lose mine above.

    I think you’d be hard pressed to find even a single instance of this happening. Meanwhile, deconversions are extremely commonplace and most of them turn out okay in the end. This kind of statement is total bullshit.

  296. buddyward says

    @t90bb

    Very interesting. The reason I asked is that I have never really heard a theist who admitted that if evolution is proven to be false that therefore their specific religion becomes true. I hear the show hosts say it all the time but never from the theists. Every once in a while I would hear a theist say that since atheists believe in evolution then atheists believe in something by faith. Which I think translate to “Well you are just as bad as I am so why not join the club.”

    You are in a situation that I do not find myself into wherein you have a brother that is also a pastor which I think would make a conversation easier and more honest. I was looking for something along the line of “If evolution is false therefore [insert some reason here]”. Unfortunately, I do not think that your brother is willing to go that far in his reasoning.

    I was recently watching the movie, “Behind the curve”, which is a documentary about flat earthers. One thing that resonated with me in that movie are the scientists that look at the situation in a very interesting way. There are those that says, “We as advocates for science are incumbent to help those that do not understand.”. There is another one that says, “If we turn them away then they (and us) will be no better off.” I find this kind of compassion very refreshing. I, myself am guilty of turning my back on those that refuses to even try and understand.

    I do not know how your conversation with your brother is but I am hoping that maybe one day you and your brother can have a civil and honest conversation with regards to any scientific theories. I am hoping that your brother would at the very least admit to you why it is important that he declare evolution is false. I do not know how to go about doing this but I am hoping that you somehow find a way. Perhaps it can be a setting where he feels that his faith is not being challenged.

  297. t90bb says

    324 Buddy…..thanks for listening and I appreciate your thoughts. sorry I got sidetracked!

  298. speedofsound says

    @ t90bb

    I go to AA because it’s everywhere and I too need a weekly reminder that I should not drink or snort certain things. But I find the steps, properly interpreted to have changed most of my life.

    Spirituality is not complicated. We all experience bits of it every day. It’s a certain brain state. If you take psychedelic drugs you get a high dose. What the drugs do is inhibit certain pathways. And more amazingly they inhibit inhibitors of other paths. Those paths are multimodal association cortices. Now you can train yourself to sort of fuzz out and enter a multimodal state. It seems the more time I spend there the better I feel. Nothing too magical about this.

    AA is a god like institution solely because of the country we live in. The history of why they say ‘as you understand him’ is about a war that happened long ago between Minnesota AA and Michigan AA. MN, consisting of many native americans wanted the god word out. So they compromised.I stick with AA because I am changing it from within. In MN it might be easier. Out of about 18 people only two give me looks when I preface my remarks with “I am a card carrying American Atheist”. Our meeting fluctuates a little depending on how many godies attend but for the most part no one gives a shit. My sponsor is now an atheist and he wasn’t when I met him. But he had a lot of questions for me about spirituality and the steps. When he got those questions answered to his satisfaction he dropped the religion. That’s how we do it. We are not going to change believers by brute force and winning arguments. We win them by showing them that they have nothing to lose and much to gain.

    Now I take on sponsees that can’t do the god thing. This is change from within that really matters.

  299. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @buddyward #324:

    I was recently watching the movie, “Behind the curve”, which is a documentary about flat earthers.

    See also…
    Podcast: OhNoRossAndCarrie – Flat Earth (8x ~1hr eps)

  300. t90bb says

    327.. I find the steps “securlarly applied” were transformative as well. They allowed my to better understand who I was, shep myself of things I was shielding from others, commit to change, become accountable, make amends to others, and invest time in being helpful to others. I too have taken dozens of others through the steps

    That said I disagree with nearly everything you said about spirituality. Your brand of spirituality may not be complicated and or is a brain state. Ask 50 others and they will tell you its something different. None of the others think its complicated either, just different from your definition. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying your definition is any better or worse than others.

    your definition of spirituality is YOUR definition////….not THE definition. If your concept is helpful to you then that is fantastic!

    I am glad you are doing well brother. If you don’t think there are diverse opinions about what spirituality is…ask a few dozen peeps lol.

  301. John David Balla says

    @speedofsound #327 and perhaps t90bb,

    I think I have emailed or perhaps talked on the phone with one of you over the past year but I can’t remember who is who, and I apologize for that.

    I know of devout AA-ers who have been in the program for over 30-years and are also devout atheist. I say this because I am well aware of the atheist movement within AA. It’s been around for a few decades, at least in Chicago. Reform can be a good thing. I personally don’t have the patience for it. For me, the refreshment of a secular, science-based program where I don’t have to fight anyone over dogma, let alone religion, is a delight. In fact, I’m still getting used to being in the status quo when someone makes a supernatural or otherwise irrational assertion because built right into SMART’s framework (ABCs/REBT) is an adherence to rational thought. I actually get to call-out woo-woo bs under the guise of the scientific method. That’s funny because under most any other environment, the one spewing the woo would have the upper hand. Yep. Our world is not all that reasonable.

    That said, I honor the work you’re doing and have nothing to say to discourage you. To paraphrase Matt Dillahunty, I want as many pathways to reasonableness as possible.

    On my end, I’m fortunate enough to be working on a masters degree that allows me to bring new research and science to SMART. Currently, I’m designing my Capstone research project which I will submit to various peer-reviewed journals on how to introduce a choice architecture to the standard treatment protocol that emphasizes the positive motivation of well-being in contrast to the negative or punitive motivations or “what ifs” that will likely happen if alcohol cessation is not continued. In other words, my hypothesis is that success rates will improve if a blended model of both positive and negative motivations are utilized whereby the person not only stops alcohol cessation but also engages in new goals and behaviors that make life actually meaningful.

    Why go from a -2 position to a 0 position when there’s an opportunity to go from a -2 to a +2? Anyway, that’s what I’m working on. At the end of the day, everyone cares about well-being, addicted or otherwise. So shouldn’t everyone have the same goal? Doesn’t a goal of not drinking seem rather underwhelming? Doesn’t life have more to offer?

  302. John David Balla says

    @t90bb Sometimes, when I want to get a rise out of people, I say I’m anti-spiritual. It gives me the space to present my case, that spirituality is one of those “deepity” terms for which anyone can claim. And that’s part of its appeal. It requires virtually no effort to assert and is so vague as to be synonymous with all kinds of platitudes that are also poorly-defined (inner-knowing, intuitive feeling, moral righteousness). I’m yet to find a meaningful or useful definition. In fact, spirituality may be the worst defined term in the English language. If not, certainly in the top10.

  303. t90bb says

    331…one more thing….if anything my spirituality is nothing more than my perspective…the way I see things. Since we have the word perspective….I have no use for the word spirituality.

    Ive always wanted to attend rational recovery and ck it out. There is only a couple meetings near me but its been doable I have just been lazy. I suspect there is some overlap in the program,,,,focus on intraspection etc..

  304. speedofsound says

    Yeah right, and doctors must redefine homeopathy to make it compatible with real medicine

    Sorry but this is a really bad and sad analogy. Come on!

  305. speedofsound says

    t90bb

    That said I disagree with nearly everything you said about spirituality. Your brand of spirituality may not be complicated and or is a brain state. Ask 50 others and they will tell you its something different. None of the others think its complicated either, just different from your definition. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying your definition is any better or worse than others.

    your definition of spirituality is YOUR definition////….not THE definition. If your concept is helpful to you then that is fantastic!

    But it isn’t a definition. It’s a thing that happens to people. A kind of subjective experience. Please don’t make me some like dooffei here.

    Let’s break it down. People have varieties of experience correct?
    We seem to be able to communicate on many of these experiences with some certainty that we are having the same one.
    Multitudes talk about this spiritual feeling.
    Do you think they are lying about having some deeply powerful experience? The people that claim this personal experience of god are talking about some strong experience.

    Now try and get your mind outside of this thing by pretending that we are talking about a ‘stub-your-toe-experience’. It’s the same kind of thing only it causes more issues. People that believe are sort of addicted to this feeling. They are not going to give it up to reason. But if they understand that it is a subjective experience that anyone can train themselves to have, often, without any belief it might help.

    I’ve studied this experience all my life. Had many versions of it. So it is one of my hobbies. Due to bias I may be wrong but I think we need to understand this thing for a true secular future to be possible.

    Consider this. If someone saw a ufo and they could not explain it they may start to believe in an alien presence. But if you explain exactly how the vision happened and it was just a trick of the swamp gas or something they would be able to let go of the belief.

    This is the same thing. The spiritual feeling is a perfectly normal, ordinary, and ubiquitous, subjective phenomena.

    Fuck. How can I explain what I am talking about without sounding like dopei even to myself?

  306. speedofsound says

    @John David Balla

    Hopefully SMART will take hold and we will have have a multitude of meetings to choose from. Right now all I have is that one meeting which really turned me off. Felt like I was waist deep in misery. If I get out of town I’ll try to find another sample.

  307. RationalismRules says

    @speedofsound #334

    Sorry but this is a really bad and sad analogy. Come on!

    Because…?

  308. jigglefresh says

    Oh wow! One post from Iacoletti and we are back to interesting back and forths. Congrats folks! Btw, I think that maybe some religious folk see evolution as a front battleground against their superstitions. Their inability to see that as a non-sequitor is the thing that should be addressed, unless you happen to be a biologist or someone with comparable knowledge (or perhaps even then). Addressing the fact that they think the two things are related is the proper approach, IMO.

  309. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @speedofsound #335:

    Do you think they are lying about having some deeply powerful experience?

     
    Article: Wikipedia – Bullshit

    A person who lies is thereby responding to the truth, and he is to that extent respectful of it. When an honest man speaks, he says only what he believes to be true; and for the liar, it is correspondingly indispensable that he considers his statements to be false.
     
    For the bullshitter, however, all these bets are off […] His eye is not on the facts at all […], except insofar as they may be pertinent to his interest in getting away with what he says. He does not care whether the things he says describe reality correctly.

  310. buddyward says

    @speedofsound 335

    Fuck. How can I explain what I am talking about without sounding like dopei even to myself?

    No offense but this is one of the funniest thing I have read in this thread by far.

  311. t90bb says

    335..speed…..people have experiences…I get that. No need to label it as spirituality when we have a perfectly good label for it…EXPERIENCES. Peoples perspectives change. I get that people find change spooky sometimes…labelling it spirituality does not make it any more profound.

    I spoke about the definition being meaningless due to its subjectivity….you only furthered my case.

    I don’t really care to argue over it. Our opinions differ. No big deal…still love ya

  312. t90bb says

    335. btw a stub your toe experience generally involves a toe…and an act of stubbing..lol….there are degrees of that act for sure but its only a matter of degree….this is why if you tell someone you had a stub your toe experience they have a good idea of what you are relating……not so with a spiritual experience.

    im done, promise

  313. paxoll says

    Evolution is a gateway science for religious people. Dabble in a little biology and the next thing you know you are doing multivariate calculus on light from a black hole that has been traveling through the universe for over 100 million years.

  314. speedofsound says

    t90bb

    I don’t know. Should we be done? I don’t want to turn into my good fried dopei. I am going to try to call into Talk Heathen to see if I can better express what I am talking about.

  315. speedofsound says

    My latest endeavor is to gain some mastery over developmental biology with a view to evolution. It’s an odd thing but I realized I am very skeptical of evolution. Every beast or twig I see, or worse every eukaryotic cell, I find myself not understanding how the thing evolved. I think that is the proper attitude when you study this. It always seems like a leap to just accept the generalizations.

    Then I started to understand DNA’s role in development. Generative not descriptive. This is when the tumblers start to line up.

    So development is key to understanding. A few other things unlock a little more. John Tyler Bonner wrote some wonderful and easy to read books on this. Drift, punctuated equilibrium, and the many forms of mutation help.

    One other key for me was understanding that a seemingly sophisticated protein that catalyzes some function is not the only way for the thing to get done. It’s just the selected best way. A process like glucose metabolism has a sophisticated chain of reactions that can also happen in less sophisticated and more wasteful ways. Once a function, even a crappy cobbled together function, features in the survival of an organism, there is a modification slope that makes any small change in efficiency a candidate for selection. All you need is for something to squeeze the population a little.

    The common religious guy who only pays lip service to science is going to be naturally difficult to convince. If you can’t trust the science then the only way to accept is to actually learn the science. I fear for the actualization of the masses learning the science.

  316. speedofsound says

    Rationality Rules #337

    It’s bad because homeopathic medicine is not a brain state.

    Let’s try this. Stub-your-toe or anxiety brain states are pretty well known and talked about. There are thousands of other varieties of brain states that are not named or talked about. Some of them god damned well should be. It’s time!

    Find one of those old biofeedback machines that tell you the difference between alpha and beta-wave states. Paste it to your head and play around with changing your brain state. In one of them, I forget which cuz I am not a brain-rhythm fan, my friend and I both felt like we were doing something like ‘fuzzing out’ and not paying attention. My ‘experience’ took place at an ADHD conference and my friend and I were both shocked that the state they described as countering our ADHD, and paying attention, was the state were we felt like we were fuzzed out.

    So if you strapped one of these devices to your head and went about your day to day you would find a host of brain states for which we do not have words. This does NOT mean that they aren’t real things or significant. Your brain is not a spirit point source. It’s a fucking organ and it has state-space.

    When believers feel a personal relationship with god, or have a CME or whatever, they are somewhere in that state space, in such a way that we can tell by they are by brain scan. How far you are into a particular part of that space will be the gradation of the experience. Atheist are not immune to brain states. We have the same kinds of states.

    Now do you believe that your mind is some kind of reason centered mind point source or do you believe you are a biological organism? Do you believe you are a different species from the xtian?

    If not, then you have fucking felt ‘spiritual’! You simply need to start thinking and start learning to describe what is happening to all of us, that we may find solutions to problems of believers.

    Do not take my word for it. Paste the wires on your head and do the experiment.

  317. Ian Butler says

    Just read through the last 30 or so comment. Several interesting topics, lots of intelligent discussion, and everyone actually listening and addressing each other’s points. Now I remember why I began participating in this forum in the first place, you guys rock!

  318. t90bb says

    Speed….it would appear you are defining a rush of dopamine as a spiritual experience (or some specific brain activity)….is a runners high spirituality?? when I get goose bumps is that spirituality??? whenever I learn something that I find deep and meaningful is that spirituality???

    when I realize how ultimately small and meaningless something or some event is .. is that spirituality??

    the term also brings baggage…..like spirit or CORE or essence……..

    isn’t it easier to just say there are powerful and profound experiences that can change us…..how does this relate to a “spirit”….

    don’t get me wrong….I understand what you are saying….I just find the term next to worthless based on wide subjectivity, as was my position all along. Your position on what spirituality is …. is meaningful to YOU. I understand that….

    If spirituality is a mere brain state…are ALL brain states spirituality?? Is joy spirituality>> Is anger spirituality??? It would seem anything can be spiritual which furthers my point.

    99 percent of people in 12 step fellowships use the term often…so its clear most agree with you and not me.

  319. John David Balla says

    @t90bb #346
    I have been reticent to get involved in the discussion because there are many parallels to Kafei and I really don’t want to go back to the endless replay of posts. If he re-emerges because of this, my sincere apologies. The parallel is that we are talking about brain states that are not in dispute and not even remarkable. Their feelings can be intense and profound. The only dispute is in the labeling of the experience and attributing it to some inexplicable source. Just replace CME with spirituality and that’s pretty much it, including the residua that is assumed into existence.

    And no. The 99 percent of people in 12-step programs would not necessarily agree because they too haven’t defined what they mean by spiritual and as such, really don’t know what they are talking about, literally. This I find to be extremely frustrating. There are numerous conversations taking place where people are agreeing with each other without knowing what any of them mean by spiritual, but acting as though they do. If you don’t believe, next time the topic comes up, ask simply “what do you mean by spiritual?” and get ready to be underwhelmed.

    This is collective intellectual laziness deemed important and profound. Oh the sophistry!

  320. buddyward says

    I have been reticent to get involved in the discussion because there are many parallels to Kafei and I really don’t want to go back to the endless replay of posts.

    Please be careful, saying the name too often is like summoning Bloody Mary or BeetleJuice.

  321. speedofsound says

    Purposely misspell the name to avoid infestation. If I hear one more fucking thing from wjat the fucks his name at where’s the fuckin hospital about per-e fucking anything I am going to explode.

  322. jigglefresh says

    My good friend is in Austin right now. Apparently, AXP is going to broadcasting from somewhere in Ohio. Is that correct? Is the ACA doing a get together in Texas (a viewing party or anything)?

  323. Lamont Cranston says

    speedofsound says in #336

    Maybe SMART will take hold and we will have have a multitude of meetings to choose from. Right now all I have is that one meeting which really turned me off. Felt like I was waist deep in misery. If I get out of town I’ll try to find another sample.

    I tried to go back and figure out if you were saying you attended one SMART meeting that turned you off or if it was a 12 Step Meeting that turned you off, but couldn’t find the earlier reference.

    Just in case you didn’t know, there are online SMART forums, online SMART meetings (audio) and a 24/7 online chat if you register at their site. You have to supply a valid email address, but do not have to provide a real name. I considered taking their facilitator training a few years ago, but just could not talk myself into the regular time commitment for scheduled meetings.

    Lamont Cranston

  324. RationalismRules says

    @speedofsound #346

    it’s bad because homeopathic medicine is not a brain state.

    A plastic cup isn’t a boat, but we can still use it as an analogy if we are discussing how container ships float. Do you not understand how analogies work?

    I used homeopathy as a representative of the category ‘unevidenced things that people believe in’, which is the category that contains the various commonly used notions of ‘spirit’. I used doctors as representative of the category ‘people whose approach to the related field is evidence-based’, which is the category encompassing atheists/skeptics.

    You are arguing that people whose approach is evidence-based (and who therefore reject the ‘spirit’ concept) should take responsibility for redefining the term in order to bring it within the category of things they believe to be real, rather than rejecting it based on its commonly understood meaning.

    That is exactly analogous to doctors redefining homeopathy in order to bring it under the umbrella of actual medicine.
     
    The rest of your post has nothing to do with the argument. Just because we can identify unnamed brain states says nothing about whether or not we should refer to those mental states as ‘spirit’. Of course there are brain states we haven’t yet identified/classified/labelled. What does that have to do with ‘spirit’?
    Who else have you ever encountered who thinks of ‘spirit’ as simply an as-yet-unidentified brain state?

    Going back to your earlier post, you said:

    Words like spiritual must be redefined and made compatible with the reality…

    It’s not the word that’s problematic, it’s the concept – the belief that some form of non-physical connection exists between the individual and the cosmos (or the dead ancestors, or [insert personal definition of ‘spirit’ here] ), and/or the belief that there is some part of a human that continues to exist after their death. Changing the name isn’t going to stop people believing in those ideas. They’ll just come up with a new label.

    I don’t begin to understand why you seem so attached to words like ‘spirit’ and ‘prayer’, when you don’t use the terms in the way that they are generally understood. It’s more than a little self-absorbed to expect everyone to change our shared language to match your personal philosophy.

  325. jabbly says

    Spiritual, yep that’s one of those words that you have to ask what do you mean by that when you use it.

  326. speedofsound says

    Subjective experience is not ‘unevidenced things that people believe in’. If you tell me that you do not believe in god then I must presume that you have evidence that you do not believe in god and take your word for it. Now you may lie to me but YOU have the evidence and you know what you experience.

    Tell me what I got wrong here.

  327. speedofsound says

    @Rationialism Rules

    It’s not the word that’s problematic, it’s the concept – the belief that some form of non-physical connection exists between the individual and the cosmos (or the dead ancestors, or [insert personal definition of ‘spirit’ here] ), and/or the belief that there is some part of a human that continues to exist after their death. Changing the name isn’t going to stop people believing in those ideas. They’ll just come up with a new label.

    I don’t begin to understand why you seem so attached to words like ‘spirit’ and ‘prayer’, when you don’t use the terms in the way that they are generally understood. It’s more than a little self-absorbed to expect everyone to change our shared language to match your personal philosophy.

    You are not understanding me exactly. Granted I have difficulty being clear about it. I can’t write for shit.

    There is a brand of subjective experience that is commonly felt by believers. This is evident.

    Then, entirely separate from the experience, there are beliefs after the fact fo the experience about what caused the experience.

    Dufusfei had a drug experience and then when he came down he started to believe he had received a noetic dose from the universe and that his brain had simply been opened up by the drug and metaphysical knowledge poured in. The xtian prays, begs forgiveness, or gives themselves up to . A powerful subjective experience ensues and they attribute that to a mind-man-bear thing in the sky contacting them.

    followed by

    What do I have wrong here? Are you denying that believers have powerful emotional experiences? Do you think the belief and the experience are one and the same? Do you think the belief is necessary to have this variety of experience?

  328. speedofsound says

    I’m calling into question my entire idea of and treatment of what I call ‘spiritual experience’ in my life. You guys have got me thinking this over in a new way.

    Still. My post to RR is what should be addressed.

  329. t90bb says

    360….take you time with it….if your thinking about it then its all you can do….

    we have powerful experiences……..

    ….the feeling one gets when thinking about a creator that loves us exponentially

    ….the feeling one gets when/after being burned by a fire

    ….the feeling one gets when I win at the craps table

    ….the feeling one gets when meeting a person that intrigues us

    ….the feeling one gets when reading a beautiful poem

    ….the feeling one gets when we have realize we have afforded someone trust they did not earn and abused it….

    these are all brain states…..which ones are “spirituality” and which ones are not. They are all powerful and transformative. If they all qualify then you have made my case for me. In that case…feelings/emotions are brain states are all spirituality.

    Perhaps you are limiting brain states to those that tickle our special happy spot?? I don’t know.

    If you limit them to those brain states that change us at our “essence” or “core” or “soul”…..you have crossed into territory I cannot relate or understand.

  330. says

    @t90bb Didn’t I say these topics naturally come up? I’ve been reticent for just about a 100 posts now, and yet the topic comes up. Gee… Anyone wonder why that is?

    we have powerful experiences……..

    ….the feeling one gets when thinking about a creator that loves us exponentially

    ….the feeling one gets when/after being burned by a fire

    ….the feeling one gets when I win at the craps table

    ….the feeling one gets when meeting a person that intrigues us

    ….the feeling one gets when reading a beautiful poem

    ….the feeling one gets when we have realize we have afforded someone trust they did not earn and abused it….

    these are all brain states…..which ones are “spirituality” and which ones are not.

    None of these are example of spirituality. Sure, some people out there might describe them as “spiritual,” but certainly no mystic would.

    They are all powerful and transformative. If they all qualify then you have made my case for me. In that case…feelings/emotions are brain states are all spirituality.

    While the experiences you’ve mentioned are powerful and transformative, none of these are spiritual in the sense of how mystics engaged these type of experiences. What I’ve been explaining as the Inner Light or what has also been described as The Light Upon the Candle Stick. Spirituality involves the quality of being concerned with the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things, the inward mystical dimension of religion is what spirituality is all about.

    Perhaps you are limiting brain states to those that tickle our special happy spot?? I don’t know.

    I don’t think we’re talking about euphoria or necessarily the runner’s high or rather I should say a dopamine or endorphin rush. Rather the altered state of religious ecstasy is of a union with the Divine or Absolute wherein which, as Ken Wilber has said, is a conflict-free state of awareness, a higher state of consciousness in which one can often reside in a state of bliss, freedom from attachment, a perception that is outside of space and time, etc.

    If you limit them to those brain states that change us at our “essence” or “core” or “soul”…..you have crossed into territory I cannot relate or understand.

    Of course, you cannot relate or understand, it’s rather obvious as to why that is: you’ve not had a CME for yourself. I’d say that speedofsound, to some degree (I’m not too sure to what degree), has had a mystical experience to perhaps some extent, and that’s why his take differs from your own. That’s why these definitions are unfamiliar for you, and that’s why you give mundane examples, examples of how one reacts to the external environment as in reading a poem, being intrigued by someone, getting burned by fire, thinking about a creator that’s somehow separate from its creation, etc. However, I believe speedofsound’s issue is that although he doesn’t mind calling these phenomena of the inward dimension spiritual, because as he’s admitted, he’s an atheist who identifies as “spiritual but not religious.” He is simply reluctant to attribute it to the divine because he’s an atheist.

    Now, I made this point on Steve McRae’s channel once that I linked at #188, but I don’t think I’ve brought up here, so I’ll bring it up now. If you believe in evolution, then you necessarily believe that the word “God” has not existed forever because language only developed in the latter portion of our evolution. So, what the Perennial philosophy argues that these mystical experiences have been happening throughout millennia, and long before anyone uttered the word “God,” the Hindus called it “Brahman” over 10,000 years ago. Now, when you look up ‘atheist’ in a dictionary, what do you see? A person who doesn’t believe in God, yet this word ‘God’ hasn’t existed forever. It’s just the more modern term mystics have used to refer to the divine, but make no mistake, there’s been many names throughout history that refer to this direct inner experience of the divine. As the Taoist philosopher has said, “The name that can be named is not the eternal name,” and many people miss that point and get hung up on the word “God,” and that can confuse you, that can lead you astray and have you thinking the word God is somehow primary, as a Creationist might believe, that the word has always existed, and that God is something akin to a “magic genie.” Once that occurs, then you’re missing the point.

  331. says

    @John David Balla

    I have been reticent to get involved in the discussion because there are many parallels to Kafei and I really don’t want to go back to the endless replay of posts. If he re-emerges because of this, my sincere apologies. The parallel is that we are talking about brain states that are not in dispute and not even remarkable. Their feelings can be intense and profound. The only dispute is in the labeling of the experience and attributing it to some inexplicable source. Just replace CME with spirituality and that’s pretty much it, including the residua that is assumed into existence.

    I don’t think these professionals are attributing this phenomena to some inexplicable source, what they’re saying is that the source is the CME or Theoria (direct vision of God) or the dissolution into Brahman, etc. These are various ways of saying one and the same thing. I’m not “re-emerging” due to your response, but rather because these topics have come up, not just by you, but by others, I wanted to make a few things clear which some people are definitely having trouble grasping.

    And no. The 99 percent of people in 12-step programs would not necessarily agree because they too haven’t defined what they mean by spiritual and as such, really don’t know what they are talking about, literally. This I find to be extremely frustrating. There are numerous conversations taking place where people are agreeing with each other without knowing what any of them mean by spiritual, but acting as though they do. If you don’t believe, next time the topic comes up, ask simply “what do you mean by spiritual?” and get ready to be underwhelmed.

    I agree. I’ve dealt with this myself in the earlier portion of my life, I drank a lot before I discovered psychedelics. I’ve been to A.A. I’ve heard people tell their stories, and the only time I ever felt it came close to something spiritual is when someone would speak of their bouts with delirium tremens, and once they’ve had that, usually it’s an experience so profound that often people will stop drinking. This occurs during withdrawal in severe alcoholism or what Freud used to call Dipsomania. There’s been studies, too, and I recall one in particular involving 32 alcoholics, only 2 of which went through DTs, so it’s definitely not happening in all alcoholics, just the most abusive ones, it seems, but it is described as a kind of hitting rock bottom, conversion experience, and often these people very rarely fall back into recidivism or kindling.

  332. t90bb says

    362…..kafei….yes we know you have made your assertion dozens of times….just like the flat earthers anti vaxers……

    you don’t know the flying spaghetti monster because you have never experienced the flying spaghetti monster…..

    we get it….

    we listened. we assume you made your very BEST case for your claims….and we reject your conclusions….

    do you really think repeating the same claim 10 thousand times makes your claims any more convincing??

    Its clear your troubled that you cannot convince us……poor thing….take it up with your that which you claim to know through perennial shitology.

    Ive been here a while..I don’t think I have ever seen anyone waste so much time and convince few to none…you must have quite a bit of free time on your hands buddy!

  333. t90bb says

    and one more thing/////….

    “None of these are example of spirituality. Sure, some people out there might describe them as “spiritual,” but certainly no mystic would.”

    why in the fuck would I care about what a mystic thinks?? any more so than an astrologist?? tarot card reader…..

    I am not impressed by “mystics”…..not one bit….

    your definition of spiritual falls right in the pile of shit with everyone elses….

    again…..why are you so troubled that your case falls flat here??? repeating yourself does not help it just adds to the obvious desperation..

  334. says

    @t90bb

    362…..kafei….yes we know you have made your assertion dozens of times….just like the flat earthers anti vaxers……

    Except flat earthers and anti-vaxxers don’t have the science to back up what they say. I do.

    you don’t know the flying spaghetti monster because you have never experienced the flying spaghetti monster…..

    we get it….

    No, you really don’t. As long as you think of God as some kind of separate entity that’s “out there” in the external reality, be it the FSM or the magic sky genie, then you’ve missed the entire point.

    we listened. we assume you made your very BEST case for your claims….and we reject your conclusions….

    Well, I don’t believe you’ve grasped the conclusion since you insist on referring to God as a FSM or a magic genie. That’s why I continue to participate, because it’s not been understood, at least not by you. Perhaps not by others, too, but that’s why I’ve been participating in the discussion.

    do you really think repeating the same claim 10 thousand times makes your claims any more convincing??

    No, actually grasping what’s been established by science should make it convincing or having a CME for yourself. The latter of which is probably the most convincing.

    Its clear your troubled that you cannot convince us……poor thing….take it up with your that which you claim to know through perennial shitology.

    Not in the slightest. I’m not troubled at all. In fact, in my view, it’s correct for you not to understand right now, because A) you haven’t had the experience, and B) you also haven’t shown any genuine enquiry as to grasp this stuff in the first place. You don’t want to understand, that’s the attitude you have, and due to your up-to-date conditioning and your genetics, and various other factors, so it would make perfect sense that you do not yet grasp this stuff. As Alan Watts would say, “It would be right for you in this moment not to know.” So, I accept, as Robert Anton Wilson has said, the unique “reality tunnel” of every individual.

    Ive been here a while..I don’t think I have ever seen anyone waste so much time and convince few to none…you must have quite a bit of free time on your hands buddy!

    Today, I do. Plan to bar-b-cue, and live it up this Easter Sunday afternoon. Last time I called The Atheist Experience on an Easter Sunday was back in 2017. So, maybe I’ll wait ’till Easter Sunday 2020 before I call again. Perhaps by then Matt will actually be more aware on these topics and we can have a more fruitful conversation. However, I will point out that when you have someone like EnlightenmentLiberal type something like, “I feel like I understand now what he’s (Kafei) talking about. It took a few thousand posts, but I got there.” That’s progress. So, I don’t believe it’s all in vain as you do.

  335. Chikoppi says

    Kafai#366: “Except flat earthers and anti-vaxxers don’t have the science to back up what they say. I do.”

    You don’t. You have a sad and credulous fantasy.

    Kafai#363: “I don’t think these professionals are attributing this phenomena to some inexplicable source, what they’re saying is that the source is the CME or Theoria (direct vision of God) or the dissolution into Brahman, etc.”

    The variable being measured (M) is the “subjective experience” (V1). Your assertion is that a second variable (V2) exists, which is responsible for the observed measurement in V1. There is no evidence of this whatsoever. When pressed for evidence of V2 you invariably reiterate the measurement (M) of V1. There is no absolutely no “science” that supports the assertion of V2.

    People with Capgras Delusion entirely believe their loved ones have been replaced by identical and maliciously deceitful imposters. Sufferers have murdered their own spouses and parents as a result of the absolute conviction produced by this delusional subjective experience.

    Go on…claim that their subjective experience wasn’t “more real than real.” How certain of your subjective convictions would you have to be before murdering the people closest to you and who cared for you the most?

    If you had Capgras Delusion you would believe it with unquestioning and absolute certainty. The delusion would subjectively seem overwhelming real to the point of defining your reality. It would, nonetheless, be objectively false.

    The intensity of a subjective experience is not greater evidence of objective reality (especially not when the brain is neurologically impaired) and you have presented no independent evidence for your continued absurdities. Stop accusing others of “not getting it.” It’s ridiculous, as you are wholly transparent and one dimensional.

  336. buddyward says

    Please do not engage with the trolls. If you feel that you need to, please report them to the mods. These trolls will just try to find a way to insert their pet topic no matter how irrelevant they are to the current discussion. They will purposefully make a fallacious claim in order for anyone to argue with them.

  337. says

    @Chikoppi

    You don’t. You have a sad and credulous fantasy.

    I have, indeed, been citing the science relative to these topics.

    Kafai#363: “I don’t think these professionals are attributing this phenomena to some inexplicable source, what they’re saying is that the source is the CME or Theoria (direct vision of God) or the dissolution into Brahman, etc.”

    The variable being measured (M) is the “subjective experience” (V1). Your assertion is that a second variable (V2) exists, which is responsible for the observed measurement in V1. There is no evidence of this whatsoever. When pressed for evidence of V2 you invariably reiterate the measurement (M) of V1. There is no absolutely no “science” that supports the assertion of V2.

    No, that’s not what I’m saying. You’re the one that keeps attempting to separate these things and create a dichotomy, which is why you’ve come up with V1 and V2. There is such dichotomy at the height of these unitive mystical states of consciousness.

    People with Capgras Delusion entirely believe their loved ones have been replaced by identical and maliciously deceitful imposters. Sufferers have murdered their own spouses and parents as a result of the absolute conviction produced by this delusional subjective experience.

    Go on…claim that their subjective experience wasn’t “more real than real.” How certain of your subjective convictions would you have to be before murdering the people closest to you and who cared for you the most?

    If you had Capgras Delusion you would believe it with unquestioning and absolute certainty. The delusion would subjectively seem overwhelming real to the point of defining your reality. It would, nonetheless, be objectively false.

    The intensity of a subjective experience is not greater evidence of objective reality (especially not when the brain is neurologically impaired) and you have presented no independent evidence for your continued absurdities.

    Mystical experience, first of all, is not an instance of a delusion, so you’re making a false analogy here. What I’ve been attempting to explain is that these researchers find no distinction between the Theoria or Beatific vision reported by Christian mystics and the experience of nirvana of the Buddha or the samadhi or the experience of the absorption into Brahman in Hinduism. These are all virtually identical to that which they’re calling a “complete” mystical experience, and this is why they find these mystical experiences consistent with the Perennial philosophy. So, it’s not like I’m saying V2 (which I’m assuming you equate to God) is responsible for the experiential content of V1. It’s more accurate to say that what you’re calling “V2” is the content of V1, it’s what is invariably construed or interpreted via the CME. So, there’s no reason to separate V1 from V2 if they’re one and the same, you see. This is why mystics refer to this experience as a “union with the divine” or a “dissolution into the Absolute.” Or as Dr. Bill Richards puts it, “The merging of the Hindu drop into the ocean of Brahman” which is typical of the unitive mystical state of consciousness.

    Stop accusing others of “not getting it.” It’s ridiculous, as you are wholly transparent and one dimensional.

    If it was completely understood by people here, then I wouldn’t participate in these discussions. So, while it may seem one-dimensional to you, I find it the critical point of disagreement among not simply the participants of the thread, but the entire cast of TAE, as well.

  338. John David Balla says

    My apologies for waking the Beast. At least I had a good 24-hours before the K-bombs returned. I will be more careful next time.

  339. Chikoppi says

    “No, that’s not what I’m saying. You’re the one that keeps attempting to separate these things and create a dichotomy, which is why you’ve come up with V1 and V2. There is such dichotomy at the height of these unitive mystical states of consciousness.”

    FALSE. You are claiming that something is objectively true, meaning that it is true regardless of any subjective experience. This is a claim you are making about objective reality while citing only a subjective experience as evidence. The only thing being measured is the subjective experience and what is true about the subjective experience is not equivalent to what is objectively true.

    “Mystical experience, first of all, is not an instance of a delusion, so you’re making a false analogy here.”

    Assertion without evidence. How do you know the beliefs of someone suffering from Capgras are delusional? Those beliefs are absolutely subjectively true in every way – to them (if you were to “experience it” you would “know” it to be true). You are making a claim about the fidelity of their subjective experience to objective reality. What is the evidence by which you establish the subjective experience of those people is or is not delusional?

    “What I’ve been attempting to explain is that these researchers find no distinction…”

    Equivalent claims based on the same false premises are equally false. The fact that the claims equate to a similar subjective experience is not evidence that what those claims assert is objectively true.

    “It’s more accurate to say that what you’re calling “V2” is the content of V1, it’s what is invariably construed or interpreted via the CME.”

    Your claim is that the reported “interpretation” is objectively true, is not? Did you not just assert that there is no distinction between subjective and objective truth?

    If not then this has been a tremendous and pointless waste of time. If so then you have yet to present evidence – only presuppositional assertions.

  340. jigglefresh says

    That was well communicated, Chikoppi. Even though I view him as drunken fly, I am actually looking forward to his response. How might he try to resuscitate his position? Perhaps, he could finally present some evidence. Funnier still, will be how he explains that it didn’t cross his mind that this was the point all along. Of course, he may just make a tactical choice to pretend like he didn’t see your post. Or better yet, quote some small portion of it and make some blah blah blah about that, while conveniently ignoring the bulk of what you said. Anyway, happy bunny day, you fucking heathens!

  341. RationalismRules says

    @speedofsound #358

    Subjective experience is not ‘unevidenced things that people believe in’. If you tell me that you do not believe in god then I must presume that you have evidence that you do not believe in god and take your word for it. Now you may lie to me but YOU have the evidence and you know what you experience.
    Tell me what I got wrong here.

    Basically, the problem is that you are conflating feelings with existent things.

    Subjective experience is not ‘unevidenced things that people believe in’. … is correct, but it’s not what I said. The ‘unevidenced things’ I referred to were homeopathy and spirit, not subjective experiences.

    Subjective experience doesn’t require evidence in and of itself, because the experience is by definition personal and subjective. If you think you’ve had a feeling, then you’ve had a feeling.

    The problem is, our subjective experience may not correspond to the objective facts of the real world. That’s where independent evidence comes in.
    Homeopathy is not a personal experience or a feeling, it’s a claim (actually a collection of claims) about the behavior of material objects in the real world.
    ‘Spirit’, in the way it is commonly used, is not simply an experience or a feeling, it’s something claimed to exist in reality.
    To have good foundation for believing in either of these, evidence is needed.

    Your example of belief is a little tricky to address, because you aren’t actually talking about the belief itself, but about the fact that I hold a belief. A belief is a type of thought, so I don’t need external evidence to confirm that I hold a belief, any more than I need external evidence to confirm that I am thinking any other thought. But the belief itself addresses some proposition about the real world. If I’m to be justified in claiming my belief is in accordance with the real world, then simply looking within my own mind is not sufficient.
    I hope I’ve made sense of that distinction, I found it quite difficult to express this clearly.

    _________________________

    #359

    There is a brand of subjective experience that is commonly felt by believers.

    Then, entirely separate from the experience, there are beliefs after the fact fo the experience about what caused the experience.

    That’s the key point. The belief is separate from the experience. It’s not the experience that we skeptics doubt, it’s the interpretation of that experience into beliefs about the real world.

    Moreover, I would contend that this type of experience is not limited to believers, it’s just that those who don’t interpret these experiences as ‘mystical’ or ‘spiritual’ don’t talk about them in those terms, so it seems only the believers are having these experiences.
    I have had experiences that we might call ‘transcendent’, in that they took me out of my normal self. I don’t consider that to be mystical or spiritual, I think of it as a temporary suppression of analytical thought allowing for a higher than normal level of emotional response.
     

    What do I have wrong here? Are you denying that believers have powerful emotional experiences? Do you think the belief and the experience are one and the same? Do you think the belief is necessary to have this variety of experience?

    Taking the questions one at a time…

    I don’t see that you have anything particularly wrong in this post, except that your questions seem perhaps to spring from the continued idea that what we call ‘spirit’ is the experience or the feeling. If I read that right, then that is something I’d argue against.

    No, I don’t deny the experiences. I just don’t accept that they map to the real world, without independent evidence to confirm.

    No, I don’t think the belief and the experience are the same. The belief is a product of the experience. However, personal experience, including its interpretation, is highly fallible. Without independent confirmation it is not a reliable foundation for belief.

    While I don’t think that prior belief is necessary to have that sort of experience, I suspect it plays a part in how one interprets it. If you were brought up in a community where these experiences were considered explainable by natural means, rather than mystical or spiritual, I think you would be less likely to assign them a mystical/spiritual label. See my earlier comment about my own ‘transcendent’ experiences.
     
    ___________________________

    if you have a spare half hour, I recommend a program called Fear and Faith, by British mentalist Derren Brown – it’s a rather different way of exploring why personal experience is not a good foundation for belief. He’s an entertainer first and foremost, so it’s not necessarily all strictly factual, but it is thought provoking (and enjoyable).

    Here is the whole episode on DailyMotion:
    https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x15miaj
    On Youtube, it’s divided into 4 parts. Here’s a playlist:

  342. speedofsound says

    Well fuck me. Look at what we have conjured. If you say spirit three times guess what appears?

    @Kafei. Look. At your posts! You are saying the same things over and over again and linking the same links. This amounts to preaching. Might not be so bad if your posts were not novella length.

  343. speedofsound says

    @t90bb (#360)

    This post gets us closer to the difference in our thinking. But I need to wait out the Kafei storm, or find a place where we are sheltered from the storm, before I can carefully make sense of all this.

  344. speedofsound says

    @RR 374
    Yes! Now we are getting down to it. Let me take some time to respond and let’s wait for the K-storm to settle down. If he keeps posting I’m out of this thread.

  345. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    “Science is a way of trying not to fool yourself. The first principle is that you must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest person to fool.” – Richard Feynman, Nobel Winner in Physics, and world-renowned science educator

  346. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Kafei, we will never accept your assertions that the experience will be enough evidence for your claims. Never. I don’t care how many scientists you cite, or how much “evidence” you cite, or whatever arguments you bring, it’s not going to happen. You are not going to convince any of us with that line of argument. Give a rest. Please. Because they won’t ban you – and I really wish they would – I have the feeble hope that you might come to understand that we will never accept this, so that this place might become more productive by your absence.

  347. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Chikoppi
    Because kafei is a bad communicator, probably purposefully so, let me explain his position better than he can.

    Kafei is an idealist. That’s the position that believes fundamental reality is composed of minds. It’s something to be understood by contrasting it with dualism and materialism. Kafei believes that the world that we see around us is an illusion, and that we are all fragments of the same universal consciousness that is the fundamental nature of reality.

    To him, the perception of this reality is also the claim itself, or something. Loosely, it’s because he does not hold to anything like the standard ontology. In other words, experience of reality is reality because reality is fundamentally that mental experience, and our normal perceptions of material reality are just illusions. Does that make any sense? I’m pretty sure that is what he is trying to talk about as he flails about helplessly because he is an incredibly poor communicator.

    The other important part of his delusion is the idea that his particular experience has given him absolute confidence regarding idealism, and that includes absolute confidence that his experience wasn’t just his material brain misfiring as brains are well known to do when given hallucinagens – it’s right there in the name: hallucinagen / hallucination. When I pressed him on this previously, all he could say was that the nature of the experience have him absolute confidence that the experience was not a hallucination and absolute confidence in his particular version of idealism.

    I am now of the opinion that we should all just repeat to him as many times as is necessary the following line: I will not take hallucinagens. I will never find your personal accounts of “it feels that way to me” to be convincing of idealism. My mind will not change by you citing scientific sources unless those sources phrase your position in terms of falsifiable claims, and they also bring evidence for those falsifiable claims, and we will never accept “that’s how it felt like to me” as evidence of anything except to know that’s how it felt like to them. Now, please go away, because none of us here want to read anything more that you say, and we would all be much happier if you never posted here again. We will never have our mind changed on this topic by you, and all you’re doing is annoying us. You’re just trolling us. Please stop trolling and please go away.

  348. speedofsound says

    @ EnlightenmentLiberal

    I think it’s worse than just a case of ontological idealism. K doesn’t think that far. He will respond to what you said by telling you that you just aren’t getting it. ‘it’s all one’ ‘there is no subject/object’. I have had some experience with this eastern religion jargon and it’s something like when your reason fails you, you say something contradictory, then you accept the fuzzy intuition and happy feel that results.

    The reason we can’t nail him down on his ontological belief is that in some way he hasn’t formed one yet. On its own, if he left it there, that would be fine with me. You can live your whole damned life without ever having a metaphysical opinion. Zen in fact is the state of having no belief at all. But K, being the rascal he is, being the arrogant know it all he is, fucking insists that we atheists, who already lack belief, are going to somehow change our minds and quit identifying with atheism after we take some dope.

    He has this little acorn of a belief that he can’t put into words yet he will not drop it. That is where he is completely opposite to mystics. Zen masters, I think, refer to this as having replaced the little ego with a far fuzzy, more insidious, larger ego. The Master who believes he is a master has not mastered shit.

    His little acorn will manifest in words as some quantum BS or some fundamental conscious/mind nature of the universe or perennial wisdom. But never in clear propositional form. If he does not say it out loud then no one can argue with him about it. Reminds me in a tangential way of Wittgenstein’s beetle in a box.

    Because it is related I want to throw one of my definitions of ‘spirituality’ in. Being in a spiritual state is acting in life without ANY belief. All of the other mammals on this planet do this every moment of their lives.

    But doesn’t that sound a bit like atheism?

  349. says

    @speedofsound

    Look. At your posts! You are saying the same things over and over again and linking the same links. This amounts to preaching. Might not be so bad if your posts were not novella length.

    Well, even the professionals have explained that this experience is difficult to speak or write on. Even Michael Pollan attests to this.

    @Chikoppi

    Your claim is that the reported “interpretation” is objectively true, is not? Did you not just assert that there is no distinction between subjective and objective truth?

    This wasn’t my assertion. This is, in fact, what happens. This is referred to as non-dualism in eastern philosophy or Fana in Islamic teachings. This is what I’ve been at great pains to express, that at the height of the high dose or the CME, there is no distinction between the subject-object dichotomy that we experience in our everyday waking consciousness. This boundary is completely dissolved in such a way that all being objective or subjective is one and the same thing. There’s no longer a distinction between the two.

    If not then this has been a tremendous and pointless waste of time. If so then you have yet to present evidence – only presuppositional assertions.

    The evidence is the CME itself that’s been scientifically studied for decades now.

  350. speedofsound says

    The subject-object dichotomy has no distinction because that particular part of your brain quit working. Case closed.

    (oh fuck. am I responding? did I really just respond?)

  351. t90bb says

    kafei….the “professionals. Michael Pollan, the mystics……” lololololol…..not impressed. Not one little bit.

    You needed something…you took a bunch of drugs and had an experience powerful to yourself….you found others had powrful experiences to them that were similar to yours……..therefore it clearly was a window to the divine aka perennial shitology….???

    MOST impressive..most impressive indeed,,,,,

    I am not bullshitting this board one bit when I say I strongly suspect you are mentally ill…..obsessed with this concept…..and you need to be validated. No healthy balanced person carries on as you do.

    You have given your very best evidence for your claim I assume….and we all honestly listened and analyzed it. Eventually you have been laughed at…….and you are obsessed with repeating your claims as if saying it a thousand times will make it any more believable. This is not the behavior of a well adjusted human being.

    I honestly did appreciate the fact that you brought this to the board originally. But unless you have something to add besides “even the mystic….!” you really are being disrespectful to the board. You have provided your evidence and we reject it leads to your conclusions. This seems terribly troublesome for you. I am sorry. Tough shit.

    You have been warned once. If you repeat yourself one more time another round of email to John should get you banned permanently. Its your choice……

  352. says

    @Enlightenment Liberal

    Because kafei is a bad communicator, probably purposefully so, let me explain his position better than he can.

    Once again, you might consider that you’re not a very good interlocutor when I’ve explained over and over the point that there’s a reason why these experiences are difficult to speak or write on, for anyone, you (if you were to have the experience), me (even though I’ve had the experience), Johns Hopkins’ volunteers, the professionals have recognized this, mystics have recognized this, etc. So, perhaps you can be a better interlocutor and take note of this point.

    Kafei is an idealist. That’s the position that believes fundamental reality is composed of minds. It’s something to be understood by contrasting it with dualism and materialism. Kafei believes that the world that we see around us is an illusion, and that we are all fragments of the same universal consciousness that is the fundamental nature of reality.

    Well, it’s something like that, but not quite. I really like Parmenides distinction between what he calls “The Way of Truth” and “The Way of Opinion.” If you navigate your life with your ego without ever dissolving it, without as they say in Islam to “die before you die.” Without an experience of ego death, then if all you have is your examination of the world from the vantage point of your ego, then your thoughts and ideas about the nature of reality are opinions, and just that. It’s a very similar concept to Maya in Hinduism, Maya being The Divine Play or Lila Dance of the material world which are the appearances that Parmenides speaks on. This is why the Greek philosophers emphasized Henosis, to get in touch with reality beyond the understanding of their finite ego. So, I wouldn’t say that the world we see from the vantage of our ego is an illusion as in the sense of being “unreal,” but rather in this eastern sense and the context in which Parmenides used this word, that the universe is not what it appears to be.

    To him, the perception of this reality is also the claim itself, or something. Loosely, it’s because he does not hold to anything like the standard ontology. In other words, experience of reality is reality because reality is fundamentally that mental experience, and our normal perceptions of material reality are just illusions. Does that make any sense? I’m pretty sure that is what he is trying to talk about as he flails about helplessly because he is an incredibly poor communicator.

    The other important part of his delusion is the idea that his particular experience has given him absolute confidence regarding idealism, and that includes absolute confidence that his experience wasn’t just his material brain misfiring as brains are well known to do when given hallucinagens – it’s right there in the name: hallucinagen / hallucination. When I pressed him on this previously, all he could say was that the nature of the experience have him absolute confidence that the experience was not a hallucination and absolute confidence in his particular version of idealism.

    Once again, mystical experiences are not delusions. I prefer the term “psychedelic” or “entheogen.” Both are far better than hallucinogen at expressing what these compounds do, because there are other category of drugs outside psychedelics that cause hallucinations, like ketamine, but ketamine isn’t psychedelic, and the type of hallucinatory phenomena that occurs is also quite different from what happens with psychedelics.

    I am now of the opinion that we should all just repeat to him as many times as is necessary the following line: I will not take hallucinagens. I will never find your personal accounts of “it feels that way to me” to be convincing of idealism. My mind will not change by you citing scientific sources unless those sources phrase your position in terms of falsifiable claims, and they also bring evidence for those falsifiable claims, and we will never accept “that’s how it felt like to me” as evidence of anything except to know that’s how it felt like to them. Now, please go away, because none of us here want to read anything more that you say, and we would all be much happier if you never posted here again. We will never have our mind changed on this topic by you, and all you’re doing is annoying us. You’re just trolling us. Please stop trolling and please go away.

    It doesn’t matter how many times you say you’ll never accept the content of a CME. My point has been you’ve never had one, and so therefore, you’re simply giving a prejudice opinion of what you think will happen. The point is not how it feels to “them,” or not even how it feels, really, but that the very phenomenon of the CME does, indeed, exist, and as the research has shown, has been occurring for millennia, perhaps time immemorial, and it can be found practiced in all of the major religions.

    I have the feeble hope that you might come to understand that we will never accept this, so that this place might become more productive by your absence.

    More productive? You mean, so it could become a place where a bunch of atheists just come together and back slap each other on how accurate their view is, and that they each intellectually came to this “most rational, logical conclusion” of atheism on their own? What about “B” who made the first comment on thread 23.09? Everyone, including yourself, just pounced on this person to the point where I’m sure they were so intimidated by the wall of comments criticizing B’s post that this person just didn’t even bother commenting again. Without theists, the threads will on average stretch out to maybe 400 to 500 posts. However, with others who don’t identify with the atheist view, this thread can literally go on forever, because that’s how deep these topics really are. Even when Matt tried to reel through the six primary characteristics to see if he could identify with these characteristics since he’s always claiming he’s had it (when he’s not had it, obviously) and it becomes rather obvious when he goes through the six characteristics with Phil Session and cannot identify with them. Why? Because he’s not had the experience, to register for the “complete” mystical experience, the volunteer must meet criteria on all six of the primary characteristics definitive for the CME. Matt, nor Phil Session, nor Tracie Harris, nor Jen or Russell or Don or AronRa, etc. have had this experience, and neither have a good majority of the participants among these threads.

  353. says

    @speedofsound

    The subject-object dichotomy has no distinction because that particular part of your brain quit working. Case closed.

    If that were the explanation, then perhaps it’d be case closed, but it’s not. That’s why we continue to study these experiences, and it’s obviously not attributed to the brain that has “quit working.” These mystical states are associated with higher states of consciousness. If what you were saying is so, then meditation is a discipline to get your brain to “naturally quit working,” and that’s obviously not the case.

    @t90bb

    You needed something…you took a bunch of drugs and had an experience powerful to yourself

    I didn’t need anything. I was just plain curious as to what a high dose psychedelic experience would be like

    ….you found others had powrful experiences to them that were similar to yours……..

    Well, yes, even the science has established that the CME has nothing to do with your personal history, it’s more accurately a universal phenomenon in consciousness which they’ve (the professionals involved in research on mystical experience) recognized to be occurring throughout the ages.

    therefore it clearly was a window to the divine aka perennial shitology….???

    You do realize even the professionals highlight these parallels between the Perennial philosophy and their research, don’t you? Perhaps you’ve forgotten about that fact. You think it’s just me spouting about the Perennial philosophy? Well, you’d be wrong about that. Perennial philosophy isn’t my “pet” philosophy, it’s emphasized in our modern science. It’s a view that has been around for millennia. By calling it “a pet” of mine, you seem to suggest that I’ve coined it, I invented it, and now I’m defending it, and that’s simply not the case.

    MOST impressive..most impressive indeed,,,,,

    It is most impressive. I don’t think there’s a more profound experience you can have this side of the yawning grave short of a CME.

    I am not bullshitting this board one bit when I say I strongly suspect you are mentally ill…..obsessed with this concept…..and you need to be validated. No healthy balanced person carries on as you do.

    You’ve never heard Terence McKenna speak then or Alan Watts or Aldous Huxley, etc. I’m perfectly fine. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with my mental health, and I see a doctor as often as most people who are concerned about their physical health would. No doctor has stopped and said, “I suspect your mentally ill.” This is just a way to insinuate an insult. It’d ad hominem nonsense.

    You have given your very best evidence for your claim I assume….and we all honestly listened and analyzed it. Eventually you have been laughed at…….and you are obsessed with repeating your claims as if saying it a thousand times will make it any more believable. This is not the behavior of a well adjusted human being.

    You’re right that you’ve assumed this, and no, I haven’t offered the best evidence yet for that would involve your own personal CME. That hasn’t happen in you, therefore, you have no clue as to what is the best evidence. For if you had a CME for yourself, we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

    I honestly did appreciate the fact that you brought this to the board originally. But unless you have something to add besides “even the mystic….!” you really are being disrespectful to the board. You have provided your evidence and we reject it leads to your conclusions. This seems terribly troublesome for you. I am sorry. Tough shit.

    It’s not troublesome at all for me that when I explain that these aren’t “my conclusions,” but rather I’m simply reiterating the conclusions based on decades worth of scientific research. So, it doesn’t bother me at all that people like yourself cannot accept that fact, and would prefer to deny it. This is what our modern science is telling us today. Once again, these aren’t “my claims.” If these were simply my claims and there was no science to back any of this, then I simply wouldn’t be here.

    You have been warned once. If you repeat yourself one more time another round of email to John should get you banned permanently. Its your choice……

    I’m not repeating anything. I’m more clarifying these points because I was asked to. So, you could go ahead and write as many e-mails as you’d like. I maintain that I’ve done no such thing to break any rule here or to troll or anything of the sort. I’m engaging in sincere discussion on these topics.

  354. t90bb says

    OK…..here is johns email……I encourage all that find Kafei is disrespecting the forum by repeating himself (preaching) to let John know hes at it again.

    WE THRIVE on people who disagree with us to come here and tell us what they believe and why….Kafei has made his absolutely best case…provided what he calls evidence…..and we nearly unanimously reject his conclusions. WE have given him all the time and patience warranted and reasonable. Now he just clogs the board repeating the same claims like hes cutting and pasting….We have politely asked him to stop. Even John told him to knock it off.

    ITS TIME HES BANNED……GO START YOUR OWN SHOW AND YOUR OWN FORUM. you have abused your privilege here

  355. says

    @t90bb

    OK…..here is johns email……I encourage all that find Kafei is disrespecting the forum by repeating himself (preaching) to let John know hes at it again.

    If it’s sound like I’ve repeated myself, it’s only because I’ve been asked to reiterate points for clarification. However, if I’m guilty of preaching anything, it is the science that’s been done relative to these topics and the conclusions arrived at by the professionals involved in this research.

    WE THRIVE on people who disagree with us to come here and tell us what they believe and why….Kafei has made his absolutely best case…provided what he calls evidence…..and we nearly unanimously reject his conclusions.

    I wouldn’t say you thrive on that. You seem to thrive on insulting theists and straw manning their position by comparing God to what you call an imaginary “sky genie.” And if you’re going to speak for everyone on your behalf, it’s not that you all “unanimously reject my conclusions.” As I’ve pointed out, I’ve no personal conclusions of my own relative to this, but rather have been pointing to the conclusions that have been made by decades of scientific research that’s been established. So, you’re basically saying that people here reject the science, not my conclusions. This is another feeble attempt to straw man me.

    WE have given him all the time and patience warranted and reasonable. Now he just clogs the board repeating the same claims like hes cutting and pasting….We have politely asked him to stop. Even John told him to knock it off.

    All John said was to stay on topic, and that’s what I’ve done by responding to the users here.

    ITS TIME HES BANNED……GO START YOUR OWN SHOW AND YOUR OWN FORUM. you have abused your privilege here

    I haven’t abused anything. Despite the fact that this thread is dedicated to The Atheist Experience, it’s nevertheless hosted at freethoughtblogs.com. Do you know what free thought is? Doesn’t seem you do. I really doubt the MODs are going to ban me merely for engaging in sincere discussion among these topics.

  356. speedofsound says

    t90bb

    The link to John’s email wasn’t there in the post. I don’t like this ban business in general but he sent two new novellas right after you warned him. How do I find the mods?

  357. speedofsound says

    Kafei. I would be glad to continue this discussion with you in one of the older threads that are already infected. So we are not bothering people with this same shit over and over. Can you just fucking behave yourself?

  358. says

    @speedofsound

    Kafei. I would be glad to continue this discussion with you in one of the older threads that are already infected. So we are not bothering people with this same shit over and over.

    What’s wrong with continuing the discussion here? There is a new thread for new topics for the latest episode, if people don’t wish to continue the dialogue here, then they can post on the new thread.

    Can you just fucking behave yourself?

    I chimed in to respond to Chikoppi’s post at 371. How am I supposed to “behave”? By not responding at all?

  359. speedofsound says

    I was trying to nail something down that I was thinking about and changing my mind a bit on. You came along and blew the whole thing up. You repeated the same shit you have been repeating. That fact, the repetition, combined with some elements of the style in which you do it amounts to preaching which is a violation of most forum rules. You got thrown off RatSkep for violating that rule. You will continue to get tossed out until you realize what preaching is and accept that you are doing just that.

    I asked you a week ago to meetup up in the last thread that you blew up and I checked there every day for five days. Nothing. Then you show up here and fuck up the works. Please start your own show and we can talk there and you can preach all you want. You can even ban guys like me! It will be great.

  360. t90bb says

    389…..the mods have banned others for similar. I bet you didn’t think the mods would warn you either///….oreo and I were also warned anf guess what…we cleaned it up……..you may not hijack the blog for repetitive spamming of ideas we fully discussed and honestly engaged you with….

    you were warned and now its clear you cannot be trusted…..ill take this opportunity to wish you well in the future because your time will be short here.

  361. says

    @speedofsound

    I asked you a week ago to meetup up in the last thread that you blew up and I checked there every day for five days. Nothing.

    I actually tried responding there, but my comment simply wouldn’t post. If you’d like to bring it up here, I’ll address it, because it seems I’ve no issues posting here.

    Then you show up here and fuck up the works. Please start your own show and we can talk there and you can preach all you want. You can even ban guys like me! It will be great.

    I will eventually. I’ve been engaging in live streams lately, and I’ve sort of been busy with that. I also have been invited to speak on these topics by Atheist Edge, and I’m looking forward to being a part of that panel.

    @t90bb

    389…..the mods have banned others for similar. I bet you didn’t think the mods would warn you either///….oreo and I were also warned anf guess what…we cleaned it up……..you may not hijack the blog for repetitive spamming of ideas we fully discussed and honestly engaged you with….

    I haven’t hijacked anything. Chikoppi asked for clarification at 371, I provided that. That’s not hijacking a thread, that’s not spamming a topic, that’s not preaching, etc. That’s simply responding to a commenter. I’m also participating in the most recent thread, and as per John’s request, I’m staying on topic.

    you were warned and now its clear you cannot be trusted…..ill take this opportunity to wish you well in the future because your time will be short here.

    Once again, I’m responding to users in the thread. If you want to perceive that as disobeying guidelines or whatever, that’s up to you, but I maintain I’ve broken no such rules.

  362. speedofsound says

    @RationalismRules

    I watched that video you linked. Have to tell you a story.

    About four years ago RatSkep was attacked by a pack of trolls from this super conservative xtian forum. I am trying to remember the link. Damn. It could actually have been Darth Dawkins running that thing. He acted the same way and banned anyone who he did not agree with. They were sniping us on evolution. So I decided to figure out how the xtian fundamentalist mind worked and I posed as an xtian who believed dearly in jesus but also believed that god created us by setting up the expansion 14.5B years ago so that it would create a planet with us on us somewhere in the universe.

    I got into all kinds of discussions and I had to work hard, even offline to get into the role of a believer. I have never been one so this took some doing. I am a shit actor to boot.

    After three months of this farce I went to sleep one night to be jolted awake by a dream. It seemed like something was hovering at the foot of my bed as I woke from the dream. Now I have edited this memory, in fact caught myself editing it, to produce the best damned glowing big jesus dude I had laying around in my synapses.

    But it really fucking spooked me. I got up at about 2am and deleted my account from that forum. It occurred to me that pretending so seriously could actually damage my brain over a period of time.

    But the feeling! It had power. As feelings often do.

    I had one other similar incident with my father-in-law’s ghost right after he died. Same editing, same being jolted awake.

  363. says

    @t90bb

    i understand hes been banned at several other forums as well…

    Yes, and I explained, it’s because intolerant users like yourself simply found the topics annoying. I can see how atheists might not like or even admit to the fact that there is science out there that has shown that these type of experiences are suggestive for a conversion experience for atheists. Of course, some atheists might not like hearing that, it’s like ontological dynamite for them. So, instead of engaging in an open-minded discussion about this research, they instead would rather deny, distort or ignore it. This sort of intolerance is what was practiced at Rational Skepticism by some of the users there, and so what happened was enough people cried to the MODs to the point where the MODs became fed up. This very thing happened to me at the ThinkAtheist forums, a user there by the name of Gallup’s Mirror was totally agitated by this scientific research to the point where he begged the primary moderator of the forum to ban me, and what ended up happening was the main admin there, Dan, directly messaged me asking me to simply to stop addressing Gallup’s Mirror, because he could see no legitimate reason to ban me. He saw right through Gallup’s Mirror whining. So I can see you, Monocle Smile, Buddyward, RationalityRules, Hank_Says, etc. all whining to the MODs simulaneously to the point where instead of giving me a fair trial, and assessing whether I’m truly disobeying thread guidelines, they might simply just ban me based on the amount of social outcry which is precisely what happened at Rational Skepticism. However, not all users felt it was fair that I was banned. Some even attempted to defend me after the fact. If that happens here, that’s fine, but just as that rational skepticism wasn’t so rational, if I’m banned here, my only conclusion would be that thoughts aren’t so free.

  364. t90bb says

    kafei…..did you not encourage others to continue your bullshit on the new thread?? hes your actual post…:

    “What’s wrong with continuing the discussion here? There is a new thread for new topics for the latest episode, if people don’t wish to continue the dialogue here, then they can post on the new thread.”

    Also…have you ever been removed from another forum???

  365. t90bb says

    ahhh..yes yes! its the intolerant users!! LOL….fair trial??? weve indulged you to a fault. You have provided your best evidence and many have gone through great pains to explain why they do not find your claims or evidence logical or convincing……you just cannot deal with it.

    Rather than kindly thanking us for our time and moving on…..you repeat, repeat…repeatttttttt the same shit over and over….

    but but butttttt///THE MYSTICS say!!!…gtfo…….

    that’s why you get tossed

  366. says

    @t90bb

    kafei…..did you not encourage others to continue your bullshit on the new thread?? hes your actual post…:

    “What’s wrong with continuing the discussion here? There is a new thread for new topics for the latest episode, if people don’t wish to continue the dialogue here, then they can post on the new thread.”

    I’m not “encouraging others.” If speedofsound has something that he would like addressed, I’d be willing to engage in that discussion. If he does not, then I will not engage. It’s not as though I’m going to spam these things by themselves. I’m addressing people’s posts here, their comments, I’m responding, not spamming. There’s a difference, you see.

    Also…have you ever been removed from another forum???

    The only other one I could think of is scienceforums.net, and I don’t know if you’ve ever posted there, but they issue bans left and right. It’s a very biased forum. I had been posting at Rational Skepticism for years speaking about these topics, that’s why a sudden ban years later simply didn’t make any sense. But those are the only two I can think of, I’m still active at ThinkAtheist, Atheist-Nexus, reddit/r/atheism, Atheist Republic, The Great Debate on MeWe, etc. I mean, those are the atheist threads I visit, but I visit all sorts of threads, you’ll find me at Drugs-Forum.com, dmt-nexus.me, shroomery.org, erowid.org, religious threads, threads dedicated to Perennialism, etc.

    ahhh..yes yes! its the intolerant users!! LOL….fair trial??? weve indulged you to a fault. You have provided your best evidence and many have gone through great pains to explain why they do not find your claims or evidence logical or convincing……you just cannot deal with it.

    I’ve repeatedly made the point which you conveniently ignore, and that is the best evidence is your own CME. Nothing more, nothing less. You haven’t experienced that, therefore you haven’t processed what the best evidence is. So, it’s not that I cannot deal with your inability to grasp these concepts. It’s more that I understand that you’re having a hard time grasping these topics precisely due to the fact that you haven’t had these experiences.

    Rather than kindly thanking us for our time and moving on…..you repeat, repeat…repeatttttttt the same shit over and over….

    Not necessarily. I try and rephrase things so that people can try and understand. I mean, Chikoppi wanted to to address some points, which I did. You see, it’s one thing to attempt to explain what the complete dissolution of the subject-object dichotomy entails, it’s quite another thing to experience it for yourself.

    but but butttttt///THE MYSTICS say!!!…gtfo……

    Forget the mystics. What needs to be considered is your own potential for a CME.

    that’s why you get tossed

    Yeah, because people like you miss the point.

  367. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Kafei, do you understand that you haven’t convinced anyone and you will never convince anyone here with your arguments? You’re wasting your time and ours. You’re also driving away new posters who don’t care about your nonsense. You’re also driving away regulars who don’t care about your nonsense. Again, we don’t care if you have “scientific proof”, or “scientific experts”. We don’t care if we are living in prejudice. We’ve heard your arguments, and hearing them again won’t make us change our mind. We think that you’re arguments are poor, evidence is non-existent, experts are frauds or deluded, and you yourself are delusional. Repeating your arguments and evidence yet another time won’t change our opinions on these matters. Please leave already.

  368. speedofsound says

    Kafei. I love this subject and would like to continue, maybe, talking to you about it in a single thread that is removed from current discussions. I’m not only unafraid of the topic, but I have spent my life honing this topic and applying it. It’s as important to me as my sobriety which I attribute to the topic. So fuck you and your hypothesis that we want you banned cuz we are sceered of you.

    After today I want you banned too and emailed to request it. If you are this thick headed that you do not even get why you are disruptive then there is probably little hope of ever dragging you on to common ground.

  369. indianajones says

    ‘If he does not, then I will not engage’

    @SpeedofSound Teach me your ways oh wise one. Please!

  370. says

    @Enlightenment Liberal

    Kafei, do you understand that you haven’t convinced anyone and you will never convince anyone here with your arguments?

    Do you understand that I have convinced many people to re-evaluate their views and the science? Perhaps no one here, but that’s because typing to someone is not the same as speaking to someone. However, even you said yourself at post #23 that, and I quote, “I feel like I understand now what he’s talking about. It took a few thousand posts, but I got there.” So, obviously there was something completely incomprehensible prior to those 1,000 posts that you only understood later. So, I consider that progress.

    You’re wasting your time and ours.

    As long as we’re discussing legitimate scientific topics that are related, I don’t see that as a waste of time. Felina asked Roland Griffiths how should we be talking about this research, and I see my participation here as an effort towards that.

    You’re also driving away new posters who don’t care about your nonsense.

    Well, it’s a double-edged sword. I’m quite sure “B” was driven away by the barrage of atheist retorts here. B posted once only to never be seen again. I’d also say I’ve drawn people to engage in this discussion. I mean, just look at the first thread of this year, for crying out loud. If people didn’t care, like you say, then we wouldn’t have over 1,000 posts on this topic.

    You’re also driving away regulars who don’t care about your nonsense. Again, we don’t care if you have “scientific proof”, or “scientific experts”. We don’t care if we are living in prejudice.

    You don’t care that you’re living in prejudice? Then, you’re just basically admitting that you don’t care about the science or the evidence.

    We’ve heard your arguments, and hearing them again won’t make us change our mind. We think that you’re arguments are poor, evidence is non-existent, experts are frauds or deluded, and you yourself are delusional.

    You’ve heard the arguments, perhaps, but you haven’t understood them. Especially if you think they’re poor, if you think the evidence produced by decades of scientific research is supposedly “non-existent” or that the professionals’ work I’ve cited are frauds when they’re not. Dr. Roland Griffiths has years of experience in his field, likewise the team of professionals at Johns Hopkins involved in this research. If you want to deny legitimate science as something non-scientific, that’s your choice, but I’d say that’s delusional.

    Repeating your arguments and evidence yet another time won’t change our opinions on these matters.

    No, but it might better help you eventually grasp these topics, and despite your comment at #23, I’m still not sure you actually do comprehend any of what this research is about or what the implications are.

    Please leave already.

    Why don’t you block me? Because I’m here to stay, my friend.

  371. says

    @speedofsound

    Kafei. I love this subject and would like to continue

    Well, thank you. EL said no one cared about these topics. You’ve just proven Enlightenment Liberal wrong, then.

    maybe, talking to you about it in a single thread that is removed from current discussions. I’m not only unafraid of the topic, but I have spent my life honing this topic and applying it. It’s as important to me as my sobriety which I attribute to the topic. So fuck you and your hypothesis that we want you banned cuz we are sceered of you.

    I never said you guys were scared. I wouldn’t put you in the same category of those atheists that had me banned at RatSkep, you have shown much more tolerance then your fellow atheists, making some of them even uncomfortable (I’ve seen Monocle Smile’s insults towards you), but that guy seems to insult everyone. I’m surprised that John called out t90bb for his insults and not Monocle Smile. I feel he’s a bigger culprit of that. More accurately, what I was saying is precisely what EL expressed, that instead of engaging these topics properly, he’d rather reject the science as being legitimate, he’d rather reject the fact that these professionals are, indeed, professionals and not frauds, and by making that assumption, he rejects all the evidence produced by decades worth of scientific research. If someone is not willing to even acknowledge the science in the first place, then sure, that’s a waste of time.

    After today I want you banned too and emailed to request it. If you are this thick headed that you do not even get why you are disruptive then there is probably little hope of ever dragging you on to common ground.

    Thick-headed? I acknowledge the science. I don’t attempt to claim it pseudo-science or call Dr. Roland Griffiths a fraud. That’s being thick-headed. Let’s not get it twisted here.

  372. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @speedofsound #398:

    I went to sleep one night to be jolted awake by a dream. It seemed like something was hovering at the foot of my bed

     
    Article: Wikipedia – Sleep paralysis
     

    I have edited this memory, in fact caught myself editing it, to produce the best damned glowing big jesus dude

    There is often a perverse incentive to “testify” or to sound profound.
     

    But the feeling! It had power. As feelings often do.

    People retcon all sorts of [intense / odd / pleasant / banal] experiences, under wildly different circumstances, with religion-themed free association. Why conflate them yourself?
     
    If someone really wanted to communicate what they mean (or “I don’t know”), they wouldn’t reach for a nebulous word. There’s no honest justification to brand something “spiritual” in the first place if the word lacks a specific descriptive meaning.
     
     
    You seem to be using it as an intensifier.
     
    Article: Wikipedia – Intensifier

    a linguistic term (but not a proper lexical category) for a modifier that makes no contribution to the propositional meaning of a clause but serves to enhance and give additional emotional context to the word it modifies. Intensifiers are grammatical expletives, specifically expletive attributives […], because they function as semantically vacuous filler. Characteristically, English draws intensifiers from a class of words called degree modifiers, words that quantify the idea they modify.
    […]
    Friedrich Nietzsche, in Human, All Too Human (1878), wrote:
     
    The narrator. It is easy to tell whether a narrator is narrating because the subject matter interests him or because he wants to evoke interest through his narrative. If the latter is the case, he will exaggerate, use superlatives, etc. Then he usually narrates the worse, because he is not thinking so much about the story as about himself.”
     
    Mark Twain wrote, “Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very’; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.”

  373. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    So, obviously there was something completely incomprehensible prior to those 1,000 posts that you only understood later. So, I consider that progress.

    You’re an incompetent fool. No, I take that back. You’re a malicious fool. I described your position better than you ever did, and I did it in a few short paragraphs. Why don’t you present yourself in a similar clear manner? Originally, I might have guessed that it was because you were new to this. However, after having done this for so long, I can no longer accept “incompetence” as the explanation. Rather, the only explanation left is malice. In particular, I strongly suspect that your head is so far up your own ass, and you’re so arrogant and self-righteous, that you consider it to be a feature rather than a bug. You’d rather describe yourself using these esoteric terms and concepts that practically no one understands rather than using terms that other people will understand, e.g. rather than practicing effective communication. Your goal here is not to actually communicate yourself to others. Your goal here is to masturbate yourself at our expense. In particular, you should always open by saying “I reject dualism and materialism. I am a particular kind of idealist (with a link to the wikipedia page for idealism).”, and anything else is actually malicious to your audience in order to satisfy your own ego.

    and I see my participation here as an effort towards that.

    There is no participation here. Everyone here has heard your shit already, many times. You’re just saying the same things over and over again. I could probably do a better job arguing for your position than you can. You haven’t convinced anyone here. Continuing here is not going to convince anyone. You’re just using us and shitting all over our place for your own selfish goals. Literally every poster here except you desperately wants you gone. What an selfish, self-absorbed asshat you are to continue posting.

    I’d also say I’ve drawn people to engage in this discussion.

    And practically every single one of them wants you banned or isolated to a containment thread so you don’t shit up the place. Even speedofsound wants you banned or put in a containment thread.

    You don’t care that you’re living in prejudice? Then, you’re just basically admitting that you don’t care about the science or the evidence.

    I do not care about what you call “science” and “evidence”, that is correct. I have an entirely different conception of what “science” and “evidence” means. So too does practically everyone in this thread, and so too does every practicing scientist. See Popper for starters. If you want to call that “prejudiced”, I don’t care. I am done with your arguments. Repeating yourself for the dozenth time won’t change anything when I can make your arguments better than you can.

    You’ve heard the arguments, perhaps, but you haven’t understood them.

    The most fucking arrogant and self-centered thing that I’ve heard in a while.

  374. says

    @EL Idealism is related, especially classical idealism, but I wouldn’t necessarily say it rejects materialism. It, more accurately, rejects physicalist or materialist theories of mind. It rejects reductionism, not materialism. If you think you can steel man the arguments I’ve made, I’d like to see you try.

  375. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Quelle surprise. What a surprise. You also have an obscure alternative definition of “materialism” too. Fucking piss off already. No one wants to watch you masturbate.

  376. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Materialism

    Materialism is a form of philosophical monism which holds that matter is the fundamental substance in nature, and that all things, including mental aspects and consciousness, are results of material interactions.

    In Idealism, mind and consciousness are first-order realities to which matter is subject and secondary. In philosophical materialism the converse is true. Here mind and consciousness are by-products or epiphenomena of material processes (the biochemistry of the human brain and nervous system, for example) without which they cannot exist. According to this doctrine the material creates and determines consciousness, not vice versa.

    […]

    Materialism is closely related to physicalism, the view that all that exists is ultimately physical. Philosophical physicalism has evolved from materialism with the theories of the physical sciences to incorporate more sophisticated notions of physicality than mere ordinary matter, such as: spacetime, physical energies and forces, dark matter, and so on. Thus the term “physicalism” is preferred over “materialism” by some, while others use the terms as if they are synonymous.

    https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/physicalism/

    Physicalism is sometimes known as ‘materialism’. Indeed, on one strand to contemporary usage, the terms ‘physicalism’ and ‘materialism’ are interchangeable.

  377. says

    @EL Precisely as I thought. It’d be essentially impossible for you to steel man my position because you reject the science it’s based on. Because it’s not a mere masturbatory display of mental gymnastics, but decades worth of established scientific research which has produced evidence for the CME and its implications.

  378. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    I reject your definition of “science”. So too does everyone else in this place. Everyone. I can make your arguments better than you can, but I also think that your arguments are foolish and wrong.

  379. says

    @EL I never said you reject my definition of science, but rather you reject the science I’ve cited. That’s why you’d be incapable of steel manning my position.

  380. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    And again, I say that I reject your definitions and very understanding of what is constituted by science and proper empirical reasoning. So too does everyone else in this thread. For a start on fixing your misunderstandings, read some Popper.

  381. t90bb says

    again I remind all….use the email I provided in 388 if you believe kafei has become a nuisance deserving of restriction.

  382. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To t90bb
    Please don’t encourage spamming John. It’s unfortunate, but John et al have made their position clear that they’re not going to ban Kafei for their antics.

  383. t90bb says

    420?? spamming?? lol….hes a mod here right?? I don’t recommend spamming anyone. If you think the board is important and if you feel it is being harmed then I recommend an email……if you know of another email addy that will better direct concern please provide….

    Also a while ago there was a link to instructions on how to block individual members….does anyone have that and can they repost please!

  384. speedofsound says

    @CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain (#409)
    I was not talking about a spiritual experience. Sounds like you missed something here. It was a dream from which I awoke rapidly. Possibly related to my sleep paralysis.

    What the fuck do you think I was saying there? Really curious.

  385. RationalismRules says

    @EL, t90bb, speedofsound
    I think Kafeifei has made you lose your minds at this point. You all want him to stop posting on this thread, yet the only people responding to him, and thus giving him a reason to keep posting here, are the three of you!

    Put down the Kafeifei. Step away from the Kafeifei.

  386. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To RationalismRules
    He’s just going to pop up in some new thread, and some other new people will engage with him. John is offering the old cliche advice from 4chan, “don’t feed the trolls”. Due to my extensive experience with 4chan and other places, I can confirm that such advise is often not effective. You need to ban trolls, and the disruptive obsessive, etc. From my experience here, Kafei seems abnormally obsessive, and he’s not just going to pick up and leave, based on the observation that he fucking posts practically everywhere. Then again, by that reasoning, I shouldn’t expect what I say to work either, but I still figure it was worth a shot. Rather than engage his ideas, I’m just telling him that no one wants what he’s talking about, and I do understand what he’s talking about, and everyone wants him gone. He seems empathetic enough that if we presented a combined front of “we know what you’re selling, we’re not interested, fuck off please”, it might work.

  387. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @speedofsound #423:

    I was not talking about a spiritual experience.
    […]
    What the fuck do you think I was saying there?

     
    #319:

    I’m one of those fucks that say I am spiritual but not religious.
    […]
    we must address this need for ‘spirit’ when dealing with our xtian friends. Words like spiritual must be redefined and made compatible with the reality we have discovered

     
    #327:

    Spirituality is not complicated. We all experience bits of it every day. It’s a certain brain state.

     
    #335

    But it isn’t a definition. It’s a thing that happens to people. A kind of subjective experience.
    […]
    We seem to be able to communicate on many of these experiences with some certainty that we are having the same one.
    Multitudes talk about this spiritual feeling.
    […]
    The people that claim this personal experience of god are talking about some strong experience.

     
    #346:

    you have fucking felt ‘spiritual’!

     
    #359:

    There is a brand of subjective experience that is commonly felt by believers. This is evident.

     
    #360:

    I’m calling into question my entire idea of and treatment of what I call ‘spiritual experience’ in my life.

     
    #377:

    @RR 374
    Yes! Now we are getting down to it. Let me take some time to respond

     
    #398

    @RationalismRules
     
    I watched that video you linked. Have to tell you a story.
    […]
    I went to sleep one night to be jolted awake by a dream. It seemed like something was hovering at the foot of my bed as I woke from the dream. Now I have edited this memory, in fact caught myself editing it, to produce the best damned glowing big jesus dude I had laying around in my synapses.
    […]
    the feeling! It had power. As feelings often do.
     
    I had one other similar incident with my father-in-law’s ghost right after he died. Same editing, same being jolted awake.

    It sounded like you were presenting that anecdote as an example of “some strong experience”, some “deeply powerful experience”, you want to classify as the “spiritual feeling”.

  388. Loctagge says

    I have had people tell me “have a blessed day,” and I must say I find it quite annoying. I do not get annoyed at people wishing me a Merry Christmas – I pretty much always wish it back. Same with Easter, and most other holidays that are important to Christians. But “have a blessed day” always felt like a dog whistle. What’s more, it is difficult to express your disapproval of it, since it does have a fairly innocuous front: “Why are you annoyed? I didn’t mean anything bad.”

    Once in a while I think of responding to it with something like “live long and prosper” or “may the force be with you,” but I’m not a fan of being snarky. In my opinion the best response to it is just “you have a nice day too.” If they really didn’t mean anything bad, they’ll smile and move on. If they were trying to push their religion, then you’ll have effectively reduced “blessed” to “nice,” and they can leave with a bad taste in their mouth, and blame nobody but themselves.

  389. RationalismRules says

    @EL #426
    I understand that point. But continuing to engage with him yourself is irrational.

    goal: to stop Kafeifei filling the blog with his crap
    parameter 1: the mods do not intend to ban him at this point
    parameter 2: Kafeifei will continue to respond as long as people are engaging him

    No individual poster can achieve the goal by themselves. As you say, even if everyone stops interacting, he may continue to post. But the one way to ensure that he continues to post is to keep engaging with him.

    Regardless of the likelihood that the goal will ever be achieved under the current circumstances, and regardless of whether you are trying to achieve the goal by other means (ie. changing parameter 1), at this point by continuing to engage you are actively subverting the goal. That’s not rational behavior.

  390. buddyward says

    Lol, I just saw this video from Bionic Dance where a theist says “The argument that christians offered in favor of god based on the existence of morality have been misunderstood by atheists.”. Bionic Dance responded by “Naturally the only way to disagree is to not understand. It can’t possibly that he is wrong or bat crap crazy.”

    I thought that this is very appropriate given the current state of this thread.

  391. RationalismRules says

    @SkyCaptain #427
    I can see why you took the anecdote that way, but you’re missing the context.

    The video speedofsound is responding to demonstrates our tendency to falsely interpret experiences to mean something more than they really are. In that context, I took his anecdote to be an illustration of that point – a situation where he felt the impulse towards the ‘spiritual’ explanation, but recognized that impulse as a flawed response.

  392. says

    @Enlightenment Liberal

    And again, I say that I reject your definitions and very understanding of what is constituted by science and proper empirical reasoning.

    And yet I’ve never said anything about my definitions or understanding of science. You’re only assuming this because you don’t consider the science I’ve cited as the raw science it is. You seem to under the impression that it’s some sort of pseudo-science, and I’d be willing to wager that even Popper would disagree with you.

    So too does everyone else in this thread.

    The same would go for everyone else.

    For a start on fixing your misunderstandings, read some Popper.

    Perhaps you should learn to heed your own advice and realize the science I’ve cited is, indeed, science. I’d recommend reading some Aldous Huxley, Alan Watts, Terence McKenna, Ken Wilbur or even listening to my friend Leo relative to Popper’s idea that every theory should be falsifiable. Popper wasn’t an atheist, by the way, but more so agnostic. Although, he didn’t agree with organized religion, he also believed that people with religious beliefs deserve respect which I believe everyone here could learn from Popper in that regard.

  393. Qbert says

    @EL #426, @RR #429

    … and parameter 1 isn’t just a zen “don’t feed the trolls” philosophy.

    The mods kick off spammers. If you engage with him, he is not spamming. How difficult is this to understand?

    The people making the most full-throated calls for someone to “o lord o lord please do something about hijacked threads can you not see how we are suffering” are
    1) the most active participants in hijacking the threads
    2) collectively, several times more active than kafei is in hijacking the thread
    3) actively sabotaging the possibility of kafei getting kicked off

    It’s dishonest to suggest that the mods are responsible for controlling bad actors whose viewpoints we disagree with while being selectively blind to the bad actors who have the asymmetrical expectation that Kafei should read your posts, loosen his bowels in shame-faced admission that you are correct, and cower from responding.

    The fair thing to do – if you want Kafei banned for his behavior – is to have Jon ban you as well, for yours.

  394. Qbert says

    @indianajones – those who would like to see Kafei banned should act accordingly, rather than not-very-helpfully filling in the hole that Kafei would otherwise be digging for himself.

  395. says

    @Qbert

    – those who would like to see Kafei banned should act accordingly, rather than not-very-helpfully filling in the hole that Kafei would otherwise be digging for himself.

    Peach it, brother!

  396. speedofsound says

    EnlightenmentLiberal

    It sounded like you were presenting that anecdote as an example of “some strong experience”, some “deeply powerful experience”, you want to classify as the “spiritual feeling”.

    No sir. I mentioned watching the video about conversion experiences. I was offering an example of what happens when things are suggested to you.

    I had immersed myself in xtians as one of their peers. Lots of holy blessing. This went on for a few months. I also tried to immerse myself in the mindset.

    When you go to sleep a lot of automatic rewiring of the cortex takes place and if some part of that elicits too strong an emotion you wake up with what we call a nightmare. On waking, according to my belief about this rewiring, there are remnants lying around in your networks that cause a synthesis of the story that becomes ‘your dream’.

    I was obviously obsessing over some jesus aspect, or worried that I would suddenly convert, and woke up in this nightmare of a strong presence at the foot of my bed. Later editing gave it form.

    Now if I were in any way inclined toward xtianity this would have been a story of jesus visiting me and the editing would get out of hand.

    I also offered my ghost father-in-law story. Same kind of sudden fearful awakening with and image of him dressed in his funeral suit, most likely edited in on waking. If I were inclined to believe in ghosts this would have been my ghost encounter story and the editing would again get out of hand.

    Memory, particularly of those moments right after waking up, is most highly susceptible to editing. On each telling the memory becomes a bit more real.

    So. I was NOT talking about this mind mode I call spirituality. I’m waiting for the K-shitstrom to pass before taking that up again.

    Now I think you jumped the gun because you have formed some opinions about me and this spiritual thingy. You would be better served by listening to me and engaging in the conversation with a little less ‘vigor’. I call this kind of thing waiting for the other shoe to drop. When someone starts telling me about spirituality I wait for the inevitable god/spirit-mind ghost shoe to drop and I too jump the gun on some people.

    I detect a lot of attitude about AA and the word spirituality in these circles. I have a lot of experience in bridging between two worlds and I think I have a different perspective to offer up.

  397. speedofsound says

    A note on dreams. I do not know for sure one way or the other but I have formulated a hypothesis that we are not at all conscious when we dream. In any way. That dreams are synthesized as we wake up. Neurons that have previously been firing are likely to fire again within a few minutes. When we wake up the systems coming on line trip on these ‘post-tetanic’ networks and we encounter a whole lot of nonsense which we synthesize as the story fo our dream.

    So I don’t, tentatively, actually believe in dreams or consciousness for that matter.

  398. speedofsound says

    Rationalism Rules (#425)

    Yeah. I am ashamed of myself. But god damn it’s hard to quit. We should form a spirituality based 12 step program to help each other quit Kafee for good. I will bring the donuts.

  399. speedofsound says

    In the appendix for AA’s big book they first define ‘spiritual awakening’ as a personality change sufficient to recover from alcoholism. Then they do the thing that really pisses me off. ‘keep an open mind to spooks’ to paraphrase.

    AA Appendix II – Spiritual Experience
    From Page 569, “Big Book”, aka Alcoholics Anonymous 3rd edition.
    Also From Page 567, “Big Book” aka Alcoholics Anonymous 4th edition.

    The terms “spiritual experience” and “spiritual awakening” are used many times in this book which, upon careful reading, show that the personality change sufficient to bring about recovery from alcoholism has manifested itself among us in many different forms.

    Yet it is true that our first printing gave many readers the impression that these personality changes, or religious experiences, must be in the nature of sudden and spectacular upheavals. Happily for everyone, this conclusion is erroneous.

    In the first few chapters a number of sudden revolutionary changes are described. Though it was not our intention to create such an impression, many alcoholics have nevertheless concluded that in order to recover they must acquire an immediate and overwhelming “God-consciousness” followed at once by vast change in feeling and outlook.

    Among our rapidly growing membership of thousands of alcoholics such transformations, though frequent, are by no means the rule. Most of our experiences are what the psychologist William James calls the “educational variety” because they develop slowly over a period of time. Quite often friends of the newcomer are aware of the difference long before he is himself. He finally realizes that he has undergone a profound alteration in his reaction to life, that such a change could hardly have been brought about by him alone. What often takes place in a few months could seldom have been accomplished by years of self-discipline. With few exceptions our members and that they have tapped an unsuspected inner resource which they presently identify with their own conception of a Power greater than themselves.

    Most of us think this awareness of a Power greater than ourselves is the essence of spiritual experience. Our more religious members call it “God-consciousness.”

    Most emphatically we wish to say that any alcoholic capable of honestly facing his problems in the light of our experience can recover, provided he does not close his mind to all spiritual concepts. He can only be defeated by an attitude of intolerance or belligerent denial.

    We find that no one need have difficulty with the spirituality of the program. Willingness, honesty and open mindedness are the essentials of recover. But these are indispensable.

    “There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance – that principle is contempt prior to investigation.”

    HERBERT SPENCER

    A personality change has nothing to do with spooks.

    “Most of us think this awareness of a Power greater than ourselves is the essence of spiritual experience. Our more religious members call it “God-consciousness.”

    Now they admit to the bias and they pay due to the atheist with ‘most’. AA in the USA is dominated by xtians as is every fucking thing in the USA.

    But just because they are dead wrong about the god part does not mean that the personality change is not real. As I am living proof of.

    Something happened to me in the last twelve years. I calmed down in a surprising way. I changed my mode of operation. I changed the amount of time I spend perceiving rather than cogitating. I think that is what I call spirituality. Again I define it as acting without believing. Or thinking. Most of what we do does not require conscious, secondary, rationalization.

    Now it was mentioned above that most AA members do not have a clue what the word means. I just think it’s time they figure it out.

    On this open mind thing. If minds are truly open then they will also be open to the idea that no belief is necessary to achieve a significant personality change. In fact I think belief IS the Problem. Trading one set of miscreant beliefs for a less harmful dogma does work. You could worship a golden calf and get the same results. The method of believing in spooks works because what you believe in is sufficiently abstract and undefined that it is a proxy for no belief at all.

    Now I use the S-word because 90+ percent of the people I interact with are believers of one sort or another. They can at least grasp an intuition about what I am referring to.

    It is only in atheist circles that the word creates havoc.

  400. speedofsound says

    99% of the time when people use the S-word they actually are holding to some spook belief in reserve.

    Consider. There is something, some mode of operation in the brain that is as real as the neurons in your big toe. That all of this talk of S-experience actually refers to a mode of brain activity.

    Then what word do we use to refer to it?

  401. buddyward says

    @Speedofsound 441

    Consider. There is something, some mode of operation in the brain that is as real as the neurons in your big toe. That all of this talk of S-experience actually refers to a mode of brain activity.

    Then what word do we use to refer to it?

    I think if this was identified by science (it may already have), it would be refereed to using a name that is not easily conflated with something that is not very well defined. Scientist may even invent a word for it but I would doubt they would call it a spirit or spiritual.

  402. speedofsound says

    The only studies are know of are the unfortunate Kafloob studies and Andrew B. Newberg. They use the s-word.

  403. buddyward says

    Then I think they are doing a disservice to the scientific community by making their research more confusing. There is nothing stopping them from creating a new word or phrase that is more appropriate. Hell, they can call it the Newberg mode or Kafloob mode for all I care but using the spirit or spiritual is in my opinion stupid.

    Caveat, I have not read the studies so excuse me for being ignorant but I think that regardless of whether or not they redefined the spirit or used it as it is normally used (whatever that may be) just leads to confusion.

  404. speedofsound says

    I straight up disagree, violently disagree with Newberg in his section: Why won’t God go away?

    I have been reaping the benefits he talks about without any belief for all of my life. My point is and has always been that until we treat this experiential realm that he calls transcendence the beliefs will not go away. When we understand them strictly with science and develop secular practices that achieve the same results belief in woo will become just another embarrassment from our past.

    I further hold that belief actually gets in the way of the practice.

    I don’t think we will ever create a secular world until we at least address that these experiences do happen and are dearly held by many people. In each show when the theist says he has a personal relationship with god the hosts fall silent and do not say the obvious.

  405. speedofsound says

    Nothing stopping us from doing a little word crafting for ourselves. Hell. It may catch on.

  406. buddyward says

    @Speedofsound 446

    I don’t think we will ever create a secular world until we at least address that these experiences do happen and are dearly held by many people. In each show when the theist says he has a personal relationship with god the hosts fall silent and do not say the obvious.

    I do not think that anyone is denying that people have experiences. I think that it is how people interpret these experiences that is in contention.

    If you say that you experienced something that changed your life and we can observed that your life did change then we cannot deny that you did experience something. We may even try and figure out how you are able to get that experience and how to replicate it so that we might be able to use it to help others. If you are then going to tell us that you experienced Jesus and that changed your life then “You have some splaining to do.”

    NOTE: I do not mean ‘you’ personally but ‘you’ in a general sense.

  407. t90bb says

    436..Qbert..You said,,

    ” those who would like to see Kafei banned should act accordingly ”

    LOL what does that mean EXACTLY..?? In my world if you want something done…you make a case for it….and then you request it be done, That’s called action aka act accordingly.

    It would seem you are relatively new to the blog and I welcome you. Hope to see you contribute something worthwhile in the future!

    Thanks to EL I used killfile so I cant see what Kafei may or may not be doing or if he was booted or not.

  408. speedofsound says

    @buddyward (#448)

    I do not think that anyone is denying that people have experiences. I think that it is how people interpret these experiences that is in contention.

    If you say that you experienced something that changed your life and we can observed that your life did change then we cannot deny that you did experience something. We may even try and figure out how you are able to get that experience and how to replicate it so that we might be able to use it to help others. If you are then going to tell us that you experienced Jesus and that changed your life then “You have some splaining to do.”

    NOTE: I do not mean ‘you’ personally but ‘you’ in a general sense.

    Progress I think. How the experience is interpreted after the fact and reported is completely independent of what actually happened. Herein lies the real issue. If you have a context of some belief then that is how you will interpret and report. After The Fact.

    Consider a recent preacher on this forum. The problem with these experiences is that they seem to allow a bit of rewiring, after the fact, and they carry with them a stubborn adherence to the context in which they were interpreted. One could see this as a sort of brain damage.

    The problem with this rewiring is that it is often positive. We might want to call that brain progress rather than damage.

    So my current thinking is that these experiences leave you in a vulnerable state. This idea has some support in what I have read about it throughout my life.

  409. buddyward says

    @speedofsound #450

    Progress I think. How the experience is interpreted after the fact and reported is completely independent of what actually happened. Herein lies the real issue. If you have a context of some belief then that is how you will interpret and report. After The Fact.

    I agree. However, it is incumbent upon the scientist and\or researchers to be meticulous with how they use the reports. I believe that scientist should not use or encourage the use of terminologies that they themselves cannot understand or clearly define. I am not saying that reports should be changed, I am saying that during the analysis phase these ill defined terms should not be considered to be true.

    What we eventually want to happen is to be able to map that brain state into something that we can consistently control, whether it be physical or psychological. Therein lies the difficulty, since we currently have no way to find out what a person is experiencing, we have to rely on reports. We have to keep in mind that reports does not equate to truth. Perhaps in the future when the brain is even more understood, we can find a way to pin point that specific experience and make it easier to help people without having to burden them with a belief that cannot be justified.

  410. speedofsound says

    Newberg has been carefully noncommittal. He mostly keeps his mouth shut. Richards OTOH needs to be taken out and shot. I don’t want to be harsh.

  411. buddyward says

    @452

    My personal opinion with scientists who purposefully use these ill defined (theological????) words in their research and then redefining them have somewhat of an ulterior motive to smuggle their personal belief into their research. They would submit their papers without any mention of their personal belief such that the papers would be accepted by the scientific community and then turn around and equivocate those terms in an informal talk. I find this very dishonest.

  412. speedofsound says

    @ buddyward

    Yes. I very much agree on the dishonesty. It causes a lot of problems and has some people referring to ‘the science’ when they actually mean the ‘scientists opinion’.

    Now certain substances have an effect on serotonin levels that is remarkably out of proportion to the dosage. Micrograms instead of milligrams. These have been shown to inhibit some parts of the brain and inhibit the inhibitor of other parts. Those parts are association areas that normally keep our sense of what, where, and when we are in stasis. The normal inhibition also keeps sensory information limited and limits ‘creativity’ to sane functioning levels.

    The drugs allow a large emotional feedback that results in imprinting of experience.

    Combine these and you have a formula for both cures or crazy. Depending on how responsibly they are applied.

    Consider that certain ritual practices like the one in that conversion video linked yesterday can result in some measure of these same states. You can begin to see what a secular world is up against.

  413. buddyward says

    @speedofsound

    You can begin to see what a secular world is up against.

    Yes, all the more reason why scientists need to be more responsible.

  414. Qbert says

    @449 t90bb
    … er… but you’ve already made your case to the mods, like ten times in this thread alone. Many others (presumably you have as well) have made their case directly to the mods. Here is proof, from the horse’s mouth:
    “We are getting a load of complaints.”
    It’s like you’re asking the same girl out over and over again, thinking that if you come up with the right argument for why she should go out with you, she’ll see the light. You’re assuming that you and the mods care about the same thing. The martingale betting system doesn’t work on people.

    And Kafei responding to those who address him doesn’t violate the below directive – but it does give him the opportunity to get around it:
    “Kafei and Oreoman, please keep your remarks at least somewhat related to the content of the episodes on which you are commenting.”

    In answer to your question, my suggestion is that people stop selectively ignoring the sentence that applies to them:
    “Everyone else, if people aren’t engaging honestly, then stop engaging with them.”

    I liked what you shared about your brother.

    Re your “And then when said toy falls off the edge…or in this case eats the Apple……”, here’s my version of the free will question: “Are we all equally likely to do good or evil, whether because of personality or our personal circumstances?” No one ever answers yes. And even devout Xtians are uncomfortable with the corollary: Free will, schmee will – if we are not all equally likely to sin, then we are not all equally likely to enter heaven.

    I do not think this admission was as troublesome, historically, as it is now. Egalitarianism has crept into our thinking in ways that were unimaginable 2,000 years ago. Once, it was not particularly troublesome that a horrible fate was the right and necessary consequence of some personal essence we did not choose for ourselves (witness the casual racism and deliberate in- and out-groupism in the bibble); accepting this was central to keeping social and political order.

  415. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To 437, speedofsound
    You attributed a quote to me, but I did not write that.

  416. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @EnlightenmentLiberal #457:

    To 437, speedofsound
    You attributed a quote to me, but I did not write that.

    He was chastising me for not listening.
     
    buddyward made more headway on the ‘unreliable narrators’ and ‘conflation of their experiences as a brain single state’ aspects I was trying to get at in #409.

  417. Qbert says

    #460 t90bb
    To be fair, I live in NYC. We all live on top of each other and it becomes second nature to look past street preachers like Kafei. I was almost disappointed that the only sandwich board I saw on Easter weekend wasn’t a “RePEnT, The ENd is NiGh!” sign but someone hawking low-price manicures.

  418. John Iacoletti says

    Kafei wrote:

    Why don’t you block me? Because I’m here to stay, my friend.

    We’ll be the judge of that.

  419. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @speedofsound
    #327:

    If you take psychedelic drugs you get a high dose. What the drugs do is inhibit certain pathways. And more amazingly they inhibit inhibitors of other paths. Those paths are multimodal association cortices. multimodal association cortices. Now you can train yourself to sort of fuzz out and enter a multimodal state. It seems the more time I spend there the better I feel.

    #335:

    People that believe are sort of addicted to this feeling. They are not going to give it up to reason.

    #319:

    we must address this need for ‘spirit’ when dealing with our xtian friends

    #443:

    The only studies are know of are the unfortunate Kafloob studies and Andrew B. Newberg. They use the s-word.

    I’m surprised the term “trance states” (plural) hasn’t been mentioned in the thread.
     
    Anyway, here are some more studies you may find interesting, aggregated by Epiphenom…
    A mix of sociology, brain scans, personality traits, and motivations.
     
     
    Article: Spirituality linked to brain damage (2008)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2008/12/spirituality-linked-to-brain-damage.html

    Interestingly, the effects of damage to the right parietal lobe match with previous studies looking at brain activity in meditating Buddhist monks. When they achieved a transcendental state, activity in their parietal lobes was also quelled.
     
    So it seems that shutting down this part of the brain seems essential for at least some aspects of religious experiences
    […]
    this bit of the brain that figures out where you are in time and space. If it breaks down, you’ll experience some pretty freaky sensations – which, if you are so inclined, the rest of your brain will interpret as a religious experience.

     
    Article: The hypnotic power of charismatic religion (2010)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2010/04/hypnotic-power-of-charismatic-religion.html
     
    Article: Devout prayer uses the same bits of the brain as talking to a loved one (2013)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2013/09/devout-prayer-uses-same-bits-of-brain.html

    from the Pentacostal-style “renewalist” Christian movement. Neubauer selected his subjects […] who were able to feel the presence of God within 90 seconds of starting to pray, and also those who used visual imagery during prayer – either through imagining Jesus or through an imaginative sense of God’s presence during some part of silent prayer
    […]
    all reported feeling the presence of God for at least part of the time while praying inside the scanner

     
    Article: Thinking style affects how we interpret weird experiences (2015)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2015/07/that-was-weird-are-you-a-mind-reader-thinking-style-affects-how-we-interpret-weird-experiences.html
     
    Article: The brain surgery path to transcendence (2010)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2010/02/brain-surgery-path-to-transcendence.html
     
    Article: The transcendant temporal lobe (2010)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2010/12/transcendant-temporal-lobe.html

    They were interested to see how the volumes of different parts of the brain correlate with personality, and in particular testing a particular model of personality called the Cloninger personality model.
    […]
    The “self-transcendence” component is related to the feeling that you are part of a broader universe in some deep way, and includes tendencies towards spiritualism.

     
    Article: A sense of mystery results from the brain failing to shut down flights of fancy (2016)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2016/01/a-sense-of-mystery-results-from-the-brain-failing-to-shut-down-flights-of-fancy.html
     
    Article: Does hallucinations + happiness = spirituality? (2013)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2013/06/does-hallucinations-happiness.html

    Many highly spiritual people report experiences that are akin to mild versions of psychiatric illnesses. That’s not terribly surprising because, as researchers have learned, hallucinations and such like are actually a rather common part of the human experience.
     
    Probably 70% of people experience some form of ‘unusual experiences’ at some time in their lives.
     
    Now, you might think that hallucinations would be distressing, but people often report them to be quite pleasant. What’s more, spiritual people often report being happier than average.
    […]
    he thinks that when basically happy people have ‘unusual experiences’ like auditory hallucinations, it inclines them to a spirtual worldview.
    […]
    What he found was quite a complicated relationship.

     
    Article: When people say they are ‘spiritual’, what do they mean? (2013)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2013/02/when-people-say-they-are-spiritual.html

    it seems that what people mean when they say they are spiritual probably depends on whether or not they also think they are religious!

     
    Article: What kind of person sees ghosts? (2013)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2013/02/what-kind-of-person-sees-ghosts.html
     
    Article: Atheists are disagreeable and unconscientious (2010)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2010/03/atheists-are-disagreeable-and.html

    Well, that’s the headline. To understand why this might be, you need to dig into the details of the study.
    […]
    it’s less about what kind of personality is likely to have supernatural thoughts, still less about the effects that atheism or religion might have on personality. It’s more about what kind of person would be attracted by the social environment provided by religion in their particular neck of the woods.

     
    Article: A general-purpose “need to belong” drives belief in God (2011)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2011/04/general-purpose-need-to-belong-drives.html

    it shows not only that belief in God can make you feel loved and accepted, but that it is a direct substitute for human love and acceptance.
    […]
    The researchers are careful to point out that there are a lot of other factors involved in motivating religious belief and non-belief, of course.

     
    Article: Spiritual guidance doesn’t help substance abusers (2009)
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2009/02/spiritual-guidance-doesnt-help.html

  420. speedofsound says

    Enlightenment Liberal

    Sorry! I was yelling at Sky Captain for not listening. Scrolled too far. That was his quote.

  421. speedofsound says

    @Sky Captain

    Nice. Lots of links to keep me out of your hair for awhile.

    I have always made the point that if you want true happiness and a spiritual life electroshock or a lobotomy is the surefire way to get there.

    Brain damage. I love it.

  422. speedofsound says

    So I am going to modify my use of the word spirituality. You guys are right. It’s too broad and misdirects. I still have to start there to open certain doors with believers but it’s time for a serious rethink of the topic and methods.

  423. speedofsound says

    I will take this one on:
    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2009/02/spiritual-guidance-doesnt-help.html

    Spiritual guidance in AA is NOT believer guidance. I have been trying to make this point gently in meetings for some time. My (anecdotal) observation is that the most zealous believers that show up for meetings, talking about also joining church groups, burn out and get wasted within 30 days. I can set my watch by them.

    The parts that does work in the 12 step program is that part that must be incised and understood, sans belief.

    Where I rub other atheists wrong is that I do not seize on the first blush reading of a step lieke number one and miss the fucking point. I hear all this shit about AA making you powerless?

    “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol and that our lives had become unmanageable.”

    Where the fuck does it say in there that we are powerless in our lives?

    People often miss the point when it isn’t there lives that are at stake.

    In the rest of the steps my suggestion is that you replace all the god parts with ‘cosmos’, then lighten the font on this part, and look a little deeper into what is being suggested.

  424. t90bb says

    466…..one of the issues with AA is the bait and switch Many AA’s will tell you that the god of AA is completely any god “of your understanding”……

    Then, pages later in THE AA BIG BOOK in HOW it works. it tells us “there is ONE that has all Power….THAT ONE IS GOD…..may you find HIM now!” Besides telling the reader that there is ONE god and it is a HIM…..it later goes on to tell us that its capable and willing to share conscious contact with us and that It will remove character defects upon petition…..

    NOW THATS NOT THE GOD OF MANY NEWCOMERS….so which is it??? IS IT THE GOD the BB specifically defines?? or do we get to create our own concept??? YOU CANT HAVE IT BOTH WAYS!

    THE CHAPTER TO THE AGNOSTIC which many AA’s claim is so welcoming and wonderful to non believers, basically says many come into AA as agnostics and thats OK…But it then goes on to explain it is NOT OK to remain agnostic….and how silly the agnostics are (based on pitiful apologetics of Bill W). The BB says that those of Agnostic “temperament” have merely shut themselves off to the obvious!

    The BB claims that “deep down in every man woman and child is the fundamental idea/belief in God”…….Dr Bob even says in his personal story….”that if you lack belief in God…I feels sorry for you.”

    Both Bill and Bob believed that God could and would reveal himself if he were sought. They also insisted God would remove character defects…..BUT, apparently not cigarette smoking…as they both smoked themselves to death. Bill W continued to chain smoke while on a oxygen tank…..So I guess God was not enough to overcome that habit…..

    Sure if the agnostic/atheist ignores parts of the BB and those of conservative nature in the rooms…..it can still be transformative….

    The program generally promotes honesty, open mindedness, willingness, integrity, compassion, empathy, service all of which tend to lend toward a more serene experience. I personally believe most addictions are anxiety based so anything that can be done to reduce stress and anxiety give the addict a chance to recover. I realized that for me to truly by honest and authentic I needed to honestly respond to the god question. And that I do.

    I have had approx. 75 speaking commitments a year over the past 8 years as I do a lot of work at several local detoxes….I am honest and direct about what parts of the program do and do not work for me. I am hated by some for this. Many claim suggesting recovery without God is tantamount to signing death certificates. I reject the notion (obviously)…..My recovery has never been better now that I don’t try to fit square pegs into round holes (make excuses and justifications for a god). It has been completely liberating. Many predict I will ultimately fail…or that I never was a true alcoholic. Such bullshit…and very much the opposite of the open mindedness the program encourages.

    The fellowship and sense of importance also seem to play a huge role for many (it seems to me).

    My experience in AA was backasswards with regards to my belief. AA predicts that if you don’t drink and follow the program you will see miracles and gobsmaking things that will leave NO doubt that God exists and is acting in the lives of alcoholics….
    I rather came in with a very weak belief and after 13 years have seen absolutely NOTHING miraculous. I have seen people apparently well grounded drink…..and many others get sober and lead remarkable recoveries. Nothing I see is miraculous…and my journey to DEISM and eventually agnostic atheism all occurred while being an active member.

    The magical thinking in AA is absolute bullshit….although a placebo that undoubtedly helps many…..IN MY OPINION!

    thanks for letting me share! wink wink.

  425. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @speedofsound #466:

    I will take this one on: Spiritual guidance in AA is NOT believer guidance. […] The parts that does work in the 12 step program is that part that must be incised and understood, sans belief.

     
    Article: Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment – Spiritual direction in addiction treatment, Two clinical trials (2008; pdf)

    There is also a long-standing tradition of spiritual direction, for which there are professional training and certification programs. Spiritual directors are not necessarily religious clergy, and as with psychotherapy, a wide array of counseling styles is evident, varying in their directiveness and linkage to specific religious traditions.
     
    To our knowledge, there has been no systematic evaluation of the impact of spiritual direction or pastoral care on addiction treatment outcomes. […] Our general hypothesis was that patients given spiritual direction in addition to normal treatment would show increased spiritual practices and experiences during this early phase of recovery, which, in turn, would lead to significantly greater reduction in substance abuse.
    […]
    [Spiritual Guidance] SG was designed in collaboration with the professional spiritual directors, to resemble and yet specify their normal practice. Following an initial exploration session, patients were offered a menu of 13 spiritual disciplines from which they could choose particular spiritual exploration methods to experience and discuss in sessions and practice between sessions. Twelve of these were based on spiritual disciplines described by Richard Foster, whose book on the subject [“Celebration of discipline: The path to spiritual growth”] was provided to all SG patients. […] At the behest of the spiritual directors, we added “self-care” as an additional practice important in spiritual development.
    […]
    Particularly within the program of AA, continued practice of spiritual disciplines such as prayer and meditation is recommended and regarded as important to maintain conscious contact with God as well as sobriety.
    […]
    In understanding the absence of an effect, […] One possibility, then, is that targeting spiritual mechanisms is ineffective in altering substance abuse. A caveat here is the very limited range of spiritual interventions that have been tested to date.
     
    It is important to note that the SG intervention tested in this trial failed to increase spiritual practice or experience, and thus, the first step of mediation was not met. […] A more persuasive test would be one in which the intervention does impact the hypothesized mediator of change. Nevertheless, it is clinically informative that we experienced such difficulty in completing sessions with patients who had consented to the treatment and that SG failed to alter even the spiritual variables.
    […]
    We thus found no evidence for a beneficial effect of this spiritual counseling approach during the acute phase of addiction treatment. Different and more intensive spiritual counseling might increase daily spiritual practices, spiritual experience, and meaning and thereby influence substance use outcomes. Given the magnitude of changes that occur in early recovery, however, we believe that a more promising approach is to focus on spiritual development after a period of stabilization in which other basic needs have been addressed.
    […]
    Finally, looking for the optimal timing of an intervention may just be a wrong way of thinking about how to facilitate spiritual formation over the course of recovery. […] Spiritual development is characteristically a lifelong process. In this regard, it may have been naive to expect enduring effects from such brief intervention, an error mirroring the broader model of curing a chronic condition with an acute treatment episode.

     
    Article: Wikipedia – Richard Foster
     
    Book: Richard Foster – Celebration of discipline, The path to spiritual growth (pdf)
     
     
    This is the lead author.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Richard_Miller
     
    The three spiritual directors were named in the paper’s acknowledgments.
     
    Judith Cardoza is into enneagrams and is a yogini.
    https://www.explorationsofenneagram.com/whoweare/
     
    Marcia Huber is probably the same person who did this. All 3 are in New Mexico.
    http://www.earthspirituality.org/archive/huber_seminar.htm
     
    Vincentia Roney is a nun.
    http://www.srcharitycinti.org/ministry/charitystories.htm

  426. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    From the paper:

    we administered the Brief Multidimensional Measure of Religiousness/Spirituality (BMMRS), with particular interest in its Daily Spiritual Experience and Meaning in Life subscales that have been found to predict abstinence), as well as its Private Religious Practices scale

     
    Article: Wikipedia – BMMRS
     
    Book: BMMRS (pdf)

  427. t90bb says

    sky captain……

    You, sir, have a unique way of communicating. I never know what the fuck you are saying….

    I figure its over my head, lol.

  428. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    @t90bb #472:

    I never know what the fuck you are saying…

    speedofsound took special interest in that study (pair of studies). I facilitated further scrutiny of the paper itself and those involved, so he can mine it for whatever value it contains for his “fuzzing out” brand of spiritual practice.
     
    The study isn’t very informative without an idea what “spiritual” meant to those involved in the study and what was being measured (patterns of survey responses, apparently with predictive power). What they tried that time wasn’t effective.

  429. CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain says

    From Epiphenom’s summary of the paper.

    in the first study, the [manual-based spiritual guidance] was given by “three highly experienced, certified professional spiritual directors”.
    [Result: Failed to match the no-SG control’s reduction in anxiety and depression]
     
    In the second study, the [manual-based spiritual guidance] was provided by secular counsellors (with qualifications in psychology or social work).
    [Result: No effect vs no-SG control]

    Ah, that other book was given to patients, but THIS was the manual…
     
    Book: William R. Miller – Spiritual Evocation, Guidelines for Spiritual Direction in Drug Abuse Treatment (pdf)

    This evocative style of spiritual direction is akin to that described by the Trappist monk, Thomas Merton.

     
    Article: Wikipedia – Thomas Merton

  430. RationalismRules says

    @speedofsound

    Where I rub other atheists wrong is that I do not seize on the first blush reading of a step lieke number one and miss the fucking point. I hear all this shit about AA making you powerless?

    “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol and that our lives had become unmanageable.”

    Where the fuck does it say in there that we are powerless in our lives?

    People often miss the point when it isn’t there lives that are at stake.

    Is anybody actually saying that AA makes you powerless in other areas of your life? I’ve heard the point many times that 12-step programs disempower the addict by requiring them to ‘submit to a higher power’. Indeed, the affirmation that you quoted, “I am powerless…”, is literally a statement of disempowerment. However, I understand the argument to the ‘submission’ element in 12-step programs is disempowering in relation to that issue, not to life in general.

  431. t90bb says

    speed..rationalismrules

    the program of aa directly says that there is one who has all power..that one is god…..

    so if god has all power….what power does man have regarding anything?? none Man has no power…god has all power.
    Therefor man is powerless over everything, according to aa. Taken literally only when gods will and power aligns with mans will does man have the illusion of power…..

    that’s the conservative approach of some aa’s.

  432. RationalismRules says

    @t90bb
    So you would argue that accepting the 12-step god disempowers you not just in relation to the addiction, but life in general?

    Do you think it really does? I know lots of believers, all of whom would consider themselves powerless before their god, but they live their lives under the idea that god allows them self-determination. In that sense they’re not disempowered in their general lives.

    I think they would probably argue that ‘god has all power’ means that god can do anything, as opposed to the notion that there is a limited amount of power and god has all of it so there is none left for anyone else.

  433. speedofsound says

    @ t90bb (#469)

    Bob was the religious nut. Bill tried everything he could to either figure it out or sneak out of it. Again, my point is that it’s not AA that is the problem but the xtians that comprise most of its members. Xtianity fucks up still another good idea.

    I hate the BB agnostic and the 12n12’s bit on agnosticism as well as the over emphasis of ‘humility’ in the 7th step. Makes my skin crawl.

    But the god/HP thing is an important part. It’s an outer token of focus. Self-hypnosis requires this outer token to work really well. My understanding of how to train my brain to use this has led to an ability to change my brain with my will. Not an easy thing to do for a bundle of crackling bio-goo.

    The recent ramblings of Kaflop about the drugs is about those association cortex meltdowns where your brain suddenly can’t figure out who, where, and when you are. You could call that an ego. My working model of this suggests that this structure, which is deeply ingrained, stands in the way of changing your brain. Melt that sucker down for even a few hours and change will happen. Good or bad change. The ability to focus outside of yourself has a similar effect. I think it’s why we end up a little bit happier when we embrace humanist values. ‘Conscious contact’ is the thing I have done all of my life when I go into the woods and worship the Molecular Biology of the Cell( the One True God, mya you find biology now), and let myself feel shit. But there is a hell of a lot to unpack here.

    Keep in mind that I never been plagued with religious belief. At an early age I had to synthesize all of this woo into a naturalist mindset. So I have some habits. Maybe bad habits.

    Because of this thread and my changing my thinking a bit on running off at the mouth about spirituality I have entered into a discussion about a new kind of AA group. One that will surely not be sanctioned. Time to scrub out the god-stain I think.

  434. speedofsound says

    @ RationalismRules

    The first step is about the the ‘power’ that CH3CH2OH has on our somewhat rewired and failing dopamine/reward system. If I drink half of a 6% beer it’s like I can hear a train coming. A really big fucking dangerous train. It’s like if I were on a hilltop and the sides of the hill were covered with that Slip-n-slide material, plus dish detergent and warm water. My taking a drink is stepping on that fucking slide and every god damned time I do it I end up at the bottom of the hill and it takes me years to climb back up. Bottom of the hill for me usually looks like a blackout followed by incarceration or a suicidal self-destruction binge followed by being strapped onto a bed in a psych ward.

    Now after many of these trips down the hill I do not think it’s going to far to say that I am a powerless over this particular slippery slope.

    That’s all it says. We were ADDICTS and our lives had become bat-shit crazy.

  435. speedofsound says

    ‘god has all the power’ is simply a device to get us thinking about letting up a little on the control everything habits we have acquired. Most sober drunks are anything but powerless. Still, when I get up at 4am and knock a pint of thick turkish coffee all over the walls and floor and counter, I must stop and consider that the rest of the cosmos, not my will, is in charge of this next fifteen minutes. I can either sit there and rage like a self-important two year old or grab the roll of Bounty towels and calmly, with a bit of smile at my plan for my morning, wipe that mess up.

    This is not rocket science.

  436. speedofsound says

    In other news. Just watched Jackson Wheat talk with A Bit of Orange. I think Jackson really failed to educate this clueless and baffled YEC. Anyone see this?

  437. RationalismRules says

    @speedofsound
    I responded to your comment that atheists think AA disempowers people throughout their whole lives, so I’m not sure why you’ve leapt to the defense of the ‘powerless over alcohol’ affirmation, as though I opposed it. I didn’t.

  438. t90bb says

    many in aa believe god has all power….in all areas…and that we are just along for the ride….our best approach is to accept…and when we don’t accept the current state of things we are playing the director (god) and challenging God. We become sober through Grace alone…

    Im not saying most believe this but it exists in AA….and its a small but vocal and influential percentage

  439. speedofsound says

    @RR

    I just got writing and then I have no control over what kind of shit is going to come out.

  440. speedofsound says

    @t90bb

    A real shaky guy last night just made clawed and crawled his way to one year. He said “I relied on my HP, often three times a day, and without that I never would have made it”

    I have no idea what he was talking about. Prayer? I guess I do that but it’s probably best called something else. Ritual self-hypnosis. Out of 12 people though he was the only one last night.

    Then we have the new atheist lady. Struggling like hell. Doesn’t have a clue what these people are telling her.

    Have you seen the book Beyond Belief: Agnostic Musings for 12 Step Life? Excellent practical daily advice on how to live with some sanity. I always like to bring some small bit of practical psychology when I talk. Something you can actually do with your mind and see results. I remember being baffled at this ‘work the steps’ talk. What the fuck does working them consist in? Do I stroke them? Do I paint them on a treadmill? Maybe memorize them and chant?

    Over the years I have accumulated a host of practical bits around each step. Few of which were actually written down in the literature. It would be nice if the struggling newcomer has more of that.

  441. t90bb says

    There is a game played in AA equivocating between higher power and god….

    I am an atheist and do not believe in god……I can be stretched to say I have a higher power. For me its collective wisdom and history of the human experience. People on this board are part of my HP. With help and advise from you guys, my sponsor, my network, my therapist…….I have changed my perspective on life and seem to be able to maintain it……

    I cant lift my car but if I get 10 friends we can. Their collective strength is a power greater than my own. Its a stretch but I meet the concept that far. There is no magic in my higher power and its certainly not the gawd Bill W tries to pretend is real in the BB.

  442. speedofsound says

    For me it’s the wisdom of my biological existence and connection to my locality. I can manipulate my ‘mind’ so that I spend more time just being a critter than thinking about being a critter, and I feel better. When it comes time to turn something over that I cannot control, or to seek some better thinking on some matter, I can always just shut my chatterbrain off and turn up the volume on what I perceive.

    We are not a mind riding on a body that stands out from our environment(locale). That model and the thinking it inspires leads to no end of issues with living. I think the whole AA thing, when it does work, boils down to this simple fact.

    Ahh. But that is just my opinion and I’m just a critter.

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