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Does Science Answer All Our Questions?


The Simpleton1405241582

You're talking about LHC which was conducted by CERN am i right ? This project was succesful and it is answering many questions regarding particle physics. But thing that people are worried about is that they think artificial synthetic life is impossible and so is cern experiment. They dont see the success of CERN brought to us. They're just changing the goal post of their spiritual and supernatural questions after getting the answers.

Yup that's the one. I followed it with interest for a while and somewhere lost track of it. Yes it's main purpose is to answer the many questions left unanswered over the years and these answers could help us in unexpected ways. But when do we get to see these changes? That's a big question.....

really ? then why people waste money on spiritual and and church building, temple building things if there are many important questions to solve and people are starving. Besides if people htink LHC is not at all important then i'll say either they've no idea about physics or they just make comments based on news paper content.

I'm not entirely against to spending money for science. If we hadn't spent any money in the past, we wouldn't be in this rich technological age today. So what we did wasn't wrong. What I'm proposing is that we give a small break to these advancements and concentrate on other burning issues as well. Developing science to answer long-pending questions is not a bad idea. If we could wait all these years, why not wait for a little longer? There's a lot of black money lying waste all over the world. If only it could be extracted there would be enough to fund projects like these and yet there would be enough left to try to remove poverty etc. Lol but that is a far-fetched dream which is never going to happen.


why to think about africa ? when vatican orders no condom usage for christians in vatican. increasing population doubles the issue of mankind on this planet and people think science waste money, yeah i believe ya.

So you don't want to think about the rest of the world at all? One part of the world advances too fast and one part advances too slow - the impact will hit the whole world in unexpected ways.

after all these experiments for afterlife and death, science concluded that there is no proof for afterlife. People will gather here and argue about it but will not able to produce proof. It's just as i say, when science debunks any religious concept or spiritual concept, they change the goalpost tongue.gif

Science can never prove anything about afterlife and death. It's something that we should accept. People will still hold on to these things with religion and spirituality but it's best to let them be as they are now. Tinkering with the name of science is not such a good idea when we know there's no good outcome in trying.

Skepticus

Right from the beginning, we ended up asking too many questions...

Huh? What beginning? How did we ¨end up¨ at this beginning? How can you ask too many questions? Why is that a bad thing? It seems to me, we did´t ask anywhere near ENOUGH questions (as we didn´t know any better) and professed too many answers (or allowed others to profess too many answers) for which we had no reason to assume. That is, if this ´beginning´ you are talking about, is of the beginning what today we would call society.

 

 

and now all those questions are piled up, with their answers still yet to be found.

Again! HUH!!? Questions piled up? No answers? What in the world are you on about? Can you give examples or is it just hollow rhetoric?

 

 

If we hadn't bothered to ask those questions, then we would probably still be living in caves today. So it's a good thing that someone asked all those questions which brought such a radical change in our lives.

Good point We would probably also, still by dying by the age of 35 from tooth infections and plague. Although it isn't the questions that saved the day, it was the answers we found; what we LEARNED about nature. It´s a struggle to learn, we should all be VERY grateful for.

 

 

Now the question remains as to when will those other questions be answered?

And now I´m back to HUH? WTF are you on about?

 

 

Most of these other questions involve the supernatural, as Skepticus has pointed out above.

OH! Then it seems you didn´t appreciate what I was saying. The very nature of ´spiritual´ matters is a linguistic cloak, to mask meaninglessness. You can ask these questions anytime you like. What they mean and what answers you can expect, is an entirely different mater. If you wish to pursue common understandings, then common definitions are a must. Then having a method of inquiry is also a rather indispensable asset. When you can rule one set of answers out in favor of another and can demonstrate their parsimony, finding common agreement is much more likely. Nature has this because effects appear to have causes and explanations can be tested. What I was trying to express was the futility of supernatural ´explanations´ because they don´t even begin with understood concepts and their language is meaningless. They are manifestly untestable, because they are proffered as causeless or caused by some ´UNKNOWN´ forces/entities beyond nature. How anybody then professes to KNOW this in the first place, is the biggest mystery of all.

 

 

Then there are spiritual questions, historical questions and other assorted questions.

Spiritual!? I thought i covered that. Spirits, souls, EUTS etc. First define precisely what you mean by these things and then how you know they even exist and then perhaps we can talk about how to find answers about them. For now they appear to be contrived words, which appeal only to those who wish to profess knowledge they have not earned by honest (i.e. rational) means.

 

 

So to some extent, we have already answered the questions whose answers have helped us improve our lives. The remaining questions are like surplus, and although some of the answers might change our lives yet again, I feel that for now there is no immediate need to rush through to find answers. Instead, science could be used to solve more important issues.

You seem to have very little idea of how science works or what it is about.

 

 

For example, there was that mega project conducted in Europe recently - oops I don't remember the name - it was the world's largest........damn it I forgot. Anyway, a lot of money was poured into that project and the goal was to find some answers. Just for a second, let's imagine what could have been done with that same amount of money - it could have helped in improving the lives of a lot of people who are starving to death.

How sad that people so readily decry the meager pittance spent on science. The cost of the LHC is a paltry $6.3 billion US. That would´t put the tiniest dent, in the massive, unfathomable wealth possessed by the catholic church alone. What could be done with six billion dollars? Not a whole lot on the grand scale of global economics. It is but a tiny fraction of the global expenditure on foreign aid. To quote a commenter on a blog that I found

 

 

To complain about the cost of LHC is like spending 10 quid on a pizza then blaming the plight of the poor on someone who refused to give them a penny.

If you want to help the poor, I could suggest multitudes of scandalous money sinks that most of us are guilty of endorsing and wasting money on. My first target would be religion, followed by newage BS therapy/self help (like we need paid help from others, to help ourselves). But then what about cosmetics and other wasteful indulgences. Fast food, Booze, drugs, The war on drugs, Hollywood car chases. The catatonic decadence of our opulent wasteful lifestyles knows no bounds. How about money spent on wars or mopping up after wars (mostly caused by religion of course). Penny pinching from science is ridiculous. Please go and get a sense of perspective and then an education about what it is that we learn from pure scientific research.

 

 

The answers are important, but they certainly aren't more important than the lives of our fellow people.

But why do you imply that these are two mutually exclusive trade offs? Why cant we spend MORE on ´our fellow people´ and still spend the same or even MORE on science research? Why do you posit the equation, as if these are the only two variables in global economics and that they must be mutually exclusive? That is a false dichotomy my friend.

 

 

Development should take place throughout the world - today a few countries have raced ahead and are enjoying luxuries that a few other countries can only dream of.

I think you are confusing technology and industry with pure science. No we don´t need an electric shaver that says good morning to us and has an in built mp3 player, or a coffee peculator that we can turn on from our mobile phone five minutes before we arrive home. That is opulence in our economic habits but it isn´t the pre-conceived motive to do theoretical science. We don´t have to spend money on consumer luxuries and if we did spend less on them then we could all afford more, MUCH more benevolence AND theoretical science. The technology that allowed us to put mp3 players in our electric shavers, allows industry to make trillions out of us today, but it was made possible by science that our governments spent a relative pittance on, decades ago. The same science however also led to the development of the WWW you are currently enjoying the benefits of. The unforeseeable spin-off of digital electronics, that has made globalised multimedia communications a ubiquitous convenience. I will note two further points about this, that a} The www came out of the very same research establishment (CERN) as the LHC has been built by and b} it has a powerful tenancy to enable poor communities since they can learn an trade more freely as the price of digital computing devices falls dramatically over time.

 

 

The people of the developed countries have very little to complain about, and spend all their money in efforts like this, to find the answers.

All of their money and efforts you say? WTF!? I don´t know which part of the developed world you live in, but the developed world I know of spends Veeeeeery very little indeed on basic theoretical research to understand the laws of nature. We could do with ten times the budget thanks and then we would´t be so much as tipping our hat, to the absurd extravagances wasted on religion, wars and worthless junk. As for those answers, those answers benefit EVERYBODY even the poor countries that never spent money on their development. The aid given to poor countries includes the benefits of prior research such as vaccines, textiles agricultural produce and even education that is delivered on black boards and in books rather than scratched into the dirt with a stick.

 

 

But think about places like Africa, where the people live in a miserable state. Of course its not as if there's a law that the developed countries should try to develop other countries, but it's just a suggestion.

Yes and here´s another suggestion. Tell the Pope that he is a filthy piece of dirty lowlife ****, for condemning the use of prophylactics. A country for which itś population is starving and dying of aids, does NOT need more mouths to feed and certainly needs to protect those who are alive from suffering with a disease of such horrible torture. If I were living in these conditions, I would not wish to bring new life into this world. I have not ever been so well heeled that I feel I could afford the luxury of being able to support children in my own country. But then I don´t believe in state supporting the cost of children and I also care about the over population of the planet, so I have never been ambitious for my own family. How is it that the people in these countries can see fit to bring children into the world when the know what their own suffering is like? I wouldn't like to know I rely on foreign aid for subsistence, let alone bring more children I can´t support, into a world ravished by famine and aids.

 

Take all the wealth off of the catholic church (many hundreds of times that spent on the LHC) and give it to these poor people, with my blessing, but in thirty years time, I bet those kids who live, will have raised a new generation of poverty ridden children and they will not have learned a damn thing. The money could be better spent, on teaching family planning (avoidance actually), contraception and on rewarding women who successfully continue to avoid pregnancy. When they start initiating programs such as this, rather than feeding these people hand to mouth, I will be very generous indeed. But then, there is no need for any of us to demand the government take our taxes and spend them on foreign aid programs. Those of us who want to donate more, are welcome to do so any time we wish. What is stopping us? Why is it necessary for the government to spend part of our money on our behalf to fund foreign aid? Those who agree the money is well spent, could actually donate directly to the aid agencies like UNICEF, OXFAM and Red Cross themselves. Still this is a pointless debate, because as I have said, the cost of science research is not a mutually independent trade off against foreign aid, in fact everybody (including third world countries) benefits massively from science research in the long run.

 

 

In science fiction stories, the writers always talk about life on other planets being as being united. Do they talk about different countries on those planets? No (because that would mean additional writing!) Wouldn't it be a real achievement for science if it brought together all countries?

I don´t see how this is a matter for science at all (unless you want to reverse continental drift and reunite Pangaea). This is politics, sociology and economics. What do you expect science to do that could foster such a goal? The purpose of science is to learn whatever can be understood about the natural world and that is what it does very well. There is no telling what benefits such knowledge can lead to. No doubt without modern agriculture, we couldn't have even expanded into such complex prosperous societies and the population we can support as a result, includes the ability to give as much foreign aid to poor countries as we do. That may not be enough to please you, but it certainly wouldn't be more if we were still living as pre-industrial peasants. The poor countries get the benefits of vaccines, mass produced food and modern textiles that come not only from and as technology, but from the affluence of a technological world that made aid possible. We could´t even give this if technology hadn't made it possible in the first place.

 

Technology is merely a by-product of science though. The primary product is just knowledge. Factual knowledge about the workings of the natural world. This knowledge, knows no geographic boundaries (especially since the Internet). Our technological wealth IS shared as it happens, but simple economics and social reform, is what is needed to provide realistic population control measures. The problems of the third world are not scientific ones, but they are problems that science serves greatly to soften the blow of.

 

 

Yes we do need some answers about questions related to religion, the afterlife, etc.

Like I said, when somebody gets around to finding meaningful definitions for and then demonstrating evidence for these things, so that we can agree there are REAL phenomenon to ask questions about, maybe then we can think about placing them in meaningful questions and looking for answers; until then asking questions about religion or the afterlife is akin to asking if Tinkerbell´s wings really are large enough for her to fly.

 

 

But let's not forget today's world, and let's try to use science to do something better today!

See above, RE: What we gain from science is KNOWLEDGE and the uses of knowledge (especially the kind nobody has ever know before) are unforeseeable. Suffice is to say, that gaining a better understanding of our universe is priceless Asking what use is science, is like asking what use is a newborn baby. We didn't discover the electron so we could invent the Internet, but it wouldn't have been possible otherwise. In any case who´s forgetting todays world? Science is what we are doing in todays world to benefit tomorrows world. A world in which we might have to leave the planet. A world in which aids and cancer might be as much a historical foot note as the plague is today. The science of years gone by is what is is being implemented today and that IS for the whole world, not just wealthy countries. So we ARE using science to do something better today.

The Simpleton1405241582

Sorry Skepticus, I think I didn't make myself very clear while talking about some aspects. I just skipped past some things by speaking in general. Well no wonder you wondered what I was talking about. I'll try to clear up a few of those things.

 

blink.gif Huh? What beginning? How did we ¨end up¨ at this beginning? huh.gif How can you ask too many questions? Why is that a bad thing? It seems to me, we did´t ask anywhere near ENOUGH questions (as we didn´t know any better) and professed too many answers (or allowed others to profess too many answers) for which we had no reason to assume. That is, if this ´beginning´ you are talking about, is of the beginning what today we would call society.

By "beginning" I mean the beginning of life, in whatever way it was created. And by "ended up" I just meant we got so used to asking questions that it became like a habit, i.e., it ended up becoming a habit to us. I never said it was a bad thing. In the very next sentence I say its a good thing that we asked all those questions or else we would still be livng in caves (you commented that this was a good point - so why did you think I was referring to it as a bad thing?!)

 

What you said is right - we can never ask enough questions and asking new questions isn't wrong. It's just that we've already got many questions to answer already that it the new questions seem to pile up on top of the old, or else the old questions are put aside to find answers for the new ones. Hmm looks like I'm speaking too much in general. Time to get down to detail.

 

Again! HUH!!? Questions piled up? No answers? What in the world are you on about? Can you give examples or is it just hollow rhetoric?

And now I´m back to HUH? blink.gif WTF are you on about?

Lol ok I'll get to the point. Some of the questions I had in mind were something like:

 

--> Proof of origins of the universe

--> Death of dinosaurs

-->Existence of God

-->Where is mankind headed to

 

I could go on if you like but I think you get the point. There have been endless debates on questions like these but there hasn't been a satisfactory conclusion in any of them. This is why I said there are questions piling up. There have been efforts to answer these questions although the results haven't been satisfactory. In the meantime other issues have taken up the time of our researchers and thus it's become like a long waiting list.

 

And in case you didn't notice, the OP of this thread didn't mention specifically what the "questions" are about. Almost all the replies follow suit.

 

Good point We would probably also, still by dying by the age of 35 from tooth infections and plague. Although it isn't the questions that saved the day, it was the answers we found; what we LEARNED about nature. It´s a struggle to learn, we should all be VERY grateful for.

Yes it's the answers that saved us, but we should remain equally thankful for the questions as well. Without them life would have continued as always without any significant change and everyone of us might have dying early as you pointed out. So it's good that we got the answers, and at the same time, we should be glad that the questions were there.

 

What I was trying to express was the futility of supernatural ´explanations´ because they don´t even begin with understood concepts and their language is meaningless. They are manifestly untestable, because they are proffered as causeless or caused by some ´UNKNOWN´ forces/entities beyond nature. How anybody then professes to KNOW this in the first place, is the biggest mystery of all.

Well I can't argue much about that. All I can say is that if we think these explanations are futile, then we shouldn't try to explain. Let it remain unexplained. Let those forces remain a mystery. Let's not waste much time discussing about something if we think beforehand that it's a bad idea to do so.

 

Spiritual!? dry.gif I thought i covered that. Spirits, souls, EUTS etc. First define precisely what you mean by these things and then how you know they even exist and then perhaps we can talk about how to find answers about them. For now they appear to be contrived words, which appeal only to those who wish to profess knowledge they have not earned by honest (i.e. rational) means.

Come on now, spiritual doesn't just mean spirits, ghosts, etc! There's more to spirituality than just that. I'm no expert on that matter so I won't go deep into that, but there are matters related to the mental power of an individual that can be accessed through techniques like meditation. There are claims that individuals immersed deep in spiritual powers can perform astonishing feats with their mind. I was referring to these claims (i.e. questions....)

 

You seem to have very little idea of how science works or what it is about.

Maybe you're right. And maybe you're not. Everyone has their own perceptions about science and look at it in a different way. As to how science works, maybe I don't know anything about it. Or maybe I'm just too lazy to explain myself better over here. When talking about science being used for development I'm talking about using what we have achieved through all these years to help make people's lives better. Hmm I'm not doing a good job defending myself so for now I'll just agree - yes, I have a minuscule idea about science

 

That said, I don't think I can justify anything I've said so far, and can't comment on your other fine arguments. So I'll stop by summarizing some of my views on what you've said - spending money on science is not a bad thing and we shouldn't stop in any case. You said we're not spending enough while I'm saying we should be spending on better things. I think both can be done if we recognize where the money is actually going. Science does give us knowledge and we should try to use this knowledge to improve our lives; not make it worse.


mahesh2k

Yup that's the one. I followed it with interest for a while and somewhere lost track of it. Yes it's main purpose is to answer the many questions left unanswered over the years and these answers could help us in unexpected ways. But when do we get to see these changes? That's a big question.....

Which question you wanted to know that are unanswered ? Dark energy's existence is proved with this experiment and some of the particle physics questions are answered because of this experiment. I don't know what were the expectations of people that they think it's unanswered. If you expect people of accepting big-bang/inflation questions for this experiment then sorry to disappoint you but people will not accept the fact because of their religious/creator assumptions.

What I'm proposing is that we give a small break to these advancements and concentrate on other burning issues as well. Developing science to answer long-pending questions is not a bad idea. If we could wait all these years, why not wait for a little longer?

excuses will be always there when it comes to halting scientific development. How many people think before donating 1-2 crore ruppees to church or balaji temple in india ? shirdi temple in india ? Don't tell me they do charity and stuff ? if they were to seriously do the charity then atleast 1-5% of indian population will get daily food because of 10-12crore yearly income of those church/temples. Now can we stop this ? then why stop serious development which helps us in future. And lol about black money..

So you don't want to think about the rest of the world at all? One part of the world advances too fast and one part advances too slow - the impact will hit the whole world in unexpected ways.

As i said earlier i don't want to waste money on part that is not developing in the situation where one part is wasting money on religious hollow charity and corruption. what's the point about thinking for africa ? if people can be selfish and bribe temple/church for prayers/goodwill in the excuse of charity then why not be selfish a little more and secure your own environment instead of thinking about africa? i dont see the difference this way,rather later is more obvious with self-bias and no one will deny it.

Science can never prove anything about afterlife and death.

Lol, why is that ? cause you don't want to accept what science says ? or you want to keep barrier in such way that whatever science comes up with has to be declined ? or perhaps cognitive dissonance ?

1) It's something that we should accept
2) people will still hold on to these things with religion and spirituality but it's best to let them be as they are now. Tinkering with the name of science is not such a good idea when we know there's no good outcome in trying.

1) without knowing why we should accept ? or accept it from religious claims and random spirituality without verifing? duh..
2) lol, so you do know there is lot of religious drama and wild claims that can be debunked by science if we tinker ? or you think other way ?

mahesh2k

--> Proof of origins of the universe--> Death of dinosaurs
-->Existence of God
-->Where is mankind headed to


I'll try to answer these questions but i'm sure this will not satisfy those who believe in supernatural and spirituality.

1) Proof of origin of universe:- Big bang and inflation theory best explains origin of universe. Expansion of universe proves "inflation theory" and there are many evidences for big-bang and LHC can confirm it as well. I can go on with primeval atom model and big-bang but people who want creator as origin of universe will just discard all the big-bang proofs without any reasoning so it's not even worth attempt to explain scientifically.

2) Death of dinosaurs - Two possible scenarios explain death of dinosaurs and earlier civilizations, that is one meteor showers and second- ice age and changes in environment after meteor showers.

3) Existence of god- Looking at the answer 1) i don't understand why we need god behind everything and even if there is any creator which formed his own existence after existence of this universe then asking for his address or praying for him to solve our problem is like bottle no 13,670 in coca cola company is asking for CEO's help. Which any entity at that stature will hardly care for it. In any case, thinking about existence of god is pure waste of time and fetches nothing unless a person is limited with scientific facts and prefers delusion and less complex answers.

4) Where is mankind headed to - This depends on many factors, environmental changes of this planet, scientific development and defense and how people at higher stature manipulate and maintain peace on this planet. More blind belief and religious delusion, more will be the chaos. More cold-hearted people manipulation more will be the chaos.

Skepticus

i don't understand why we need god behind everything and even if there is any creator which formed his own existence after existence of this universe then asking for his address or praying for him to solve our problem is like bottle no 13,670 in coca cola company is asking for CEO's help.


Douglas Adams couldn´t have said it better. ¨Help me lord Cola. I was supposed to be a 1.25 Ltr no 500 ml¨

4) Where is mankind headed to - This depends on many factors, environmental changes of this planet, scientific development and defense and how people at higher stature manipulate and maintain peace on this planet. More blind belief and religious delusion, more will be the chaos. More cold-hearted people manipulation more will be the chaos.

Touche

Skepticus

A PILOSOPHICAL INTERLUDE


I would like to interject here with a couple of points more of a philosophical nature and clarify some hazy semantics, that tend to cloud any constructive debate. Let´? look at some previous discourse:

after all these experiments for afterlife and death, science concluded that there is no proof for afterlife. People will gather here and argue about it but will not able to produce proof. It's just as i say, when science debunks any religious concept or spiritual concept, they change the goalpost tongue.gif

Science can never prove anything about afterlife and death.


Lol, why is that ? cause you don't want to accept what science says ? or you want to keep barrier in such way that whatever science comes up with has to be declined ? or perhaps cognitive dissonance ?


Firstly to the semantics: Personally, I avoid the word ¨PROOF¨ at all costs, as it tends to convey the misplaced notion of absolute certainty. In science we do not strive to KNOW things with perfect certainty, but to examine the evidence and discover the most probable explanations. There´s a wise saying that states: ´Proof is for mathematics and alcohol.´ In the strictest terms science can never ¨prove anything about afterlife and death¨ if only because it can never prove any thing about anything. Moreover we are far more apt to being able to disprove what is not true, than to prove those things which are true, with anything approaching certainty. A clever chap by the name of Albert Einstein was once heard to proclaim:

No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong.



This speaks volumes for the tentative nature of scientific ideas and the way they are treated as perpetually open to falsification. It´s a little thing called intellectual honesty, that science can proudly wear as a badge of honor. No idea ever stands to reason unless it follows from logic a priori, even then it is not considered confirmed unless and until it has been tested and there is a body supporting evidence that caries from conjecture to hypothesis and then on to become a working theory. It more prudent to say that we accept things as conclusive, than to regard them as ´PROVEN´ in some absolute sense.

But if science can never prove anything about the afterlife or death, then neither can any other method of inquiry or field of knowledge. The principal of philosophical skepticism is universal. Philosophical skepticism, addresses the fallibility of the human knowledge in all of it´s guises and acknowledges that our senses through which we obtain knowledge of the world, are fallible and limited. We don´t experience the world directly but through the veil of human perception. You don´t perceive radio waves directly for instance, but we have very good reason to understand that radio waves are the very same phenomenon which we DO perceive via our eyes namely electromagnetic radiation in the form of light. This is something we can say we KNOW beyond a shadow of doubt, if not because it is PROVEN conclusively, because there is a massive body of evidence which leads to this conclusion. When on the weight of evidence one explanation seems logically unavoidable, while others appear impossible, then we have some reason to consider that explanation irrefutable, at least in practice. In principal the answer must never be irrefutable as there is always grounds to doubt the unattainable status of perfect certainty of human knowledge.

Another word worth avoiding is ´BELIEVE´. Grrrr! Honestly people, who cares what you believe? If you want to convince others of what you claim as truth, then be prepared to have those ideas challenged. If there is any valid reason to agree with your ideas, I will bend over backwards to see whatever plausibility they might posses, but they will have to accord with evidence, reason and parsimony. How much fairer can I be, without sacrificing intellectual integrity? I wrote a little limerick decades ago, to express my contempt for unreasoned belief:

Show me something believing can do,
I don´t have to believe for it to be true.

I´ll show you some facts you´ll find hard to perceive,
which turn out the same outside of belief.

For here´s just something between me and you:
Facts don´t rely on belief to be true.




I use the term ´facts´ very advisedly BTW. I mean tentative facts, that are confirmed conclusions. So please consider using the words ´confirmed¨ and ´accept´ rather than proven and believe. Adopt the model of intellectual integrity that admits what you think you know, as tentative and have humility in the fallibility of your knowledge.

The next point deals with the ´onus of evidence´. (Again - this is often called the ´onus of proof´, but as I have explained, rivalry over perfect certainty, misses the point of being open minded and willing to accept alternatives on their merit). The onus of evidence, addresses the basic precedence of reasoning. What is accepted as the most parsimonious set of explanations today may be challenged by some other idea which may tend to contradict those explanations, but the claimant is not at liberty to proclaim this idea as being true unless proven otherwise. Established knowledge, is established with good reason, so it requires even better reason to demonstrate any new idea (or even old idea) is more parsimonious (i.e. it fosters less assumptions and more agreement with evidence). All of scientific knowledge is founded on this principal of parsimony or Occam´s Razor. But the onus of evidence is always upon the claimant. They must seek to demonstrate their idea, is better suited to represent an explanation for the full range of ideas they contradict.

Looking at the above discourse again, we see that starscream notes the lack of proof (conclusive evidence perhaps stars? ) for the afterlife.

The Simpleton retorts that ¨science can never prove anything about afterlife and death¨.

But it isn't the job of science to ´prove´ anything about the afterlife. Put aside the question as to whether ´afterlife´ is a supernatural or natural concept (that has implications of it´s own) and note the fact that you don´t have to be a scientist or work in a lab, to apply reason and the principals of critical thinking to ideas and estimate the plausibility according to the principal of parsimony. As I have pointed out previously these concepts or words, don´t necessarily describe anything that is real to begin with. They may be nothing more than fictitious ideas. You cant even BEGIN to contemplate how you might inquire into the idea of an afterlife, if you cant describe what it is you are talking about (i.e. define it unambiguously) and explain how you have come to accept that there is a REAL phenomenon to investigate. To that end, I point back to the onus of evidence. If you wish to use the word as if it related to something we should even consider as real, or even just plausible, then the onus is upon you (or those who speak of such things), to establish the meaning and evidence for such a concept.

Starscream had merely pointed out the absence of evidence in favor of the idea. While absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, the onus of evidence still remains upon the claimant. No ´evidence of absence´ is required to be found by the skeptic of any afterlife, because it, simply doesn't stand to reason in the first place. The claim that science can not prove (or even provide evidence for or against) the afterlife is completely irrelevant, if this idea is meaningless or fictitious. Why science anyhow? We should all be able to think for ourselves. This sort of peevish, truculent, squealing about what science ´can´t prove´ is so annoying and naive, for all the reasons I have explained from the misconceived attitude, that science presents a monolithic tomb of unquestionable concrete facts written in stone, to the misplaced onus put upon science, to prove or disprove the meaningless and baseless claims of superstition and pseudo-science.

Returning to the theme of this discussion, (Does Science Answer All Our Questions?). One reason that science may be of little help in such matters, is because science can only address ideas which lend them-self to logical reasoning and then only make convincing progress towards proper knowledge for ideas which can proffer testable evidence, (i.e. means of confirmation/refutation). It is hardly anything to brag about when you swoon over some superstitious or meaningless concept and point out that science can´t touch it. Why is that so do you think? Science can´t touch fairytales either. Besides; If science cant unravel anything approaching what we may consider understanding, then what can? We can all exercise the same protocols of critical thinking that science exemplifies. Reason is not the sacred liturgies of high priests in secret monastic orders. Detectives, Judges, historians, philosophers, engineers, builders and people watching whodunits, may all exercise critical thinking skills. In any case the evidence comes not from science but from nature.

Science deals rather directly, with what we can learn from nature. Why? As I have explained previously, it comes down to what we know about nature, following from a rational web of cause and effect relationships. Causeless magic or supernatural realms, are presented with no basis in existing knowledge about how the universe appears to work. They are by definition divorced from causality and not required by their partisans, to have any method of reasoning with regards to how or why they work. They are simply baseless assertions, but that is not the point I wish to make. The very definition of ´supernatural´ evades the cause and effect ´web of causality´ that science finds in nature. It is only possible to explain some effect, in terms of a necessary consequence of other known causes. Those causes again are effects of other causes. It is because of this that science can make spectacular predictions based on causes of a particular conjecture. Consider Einsteins relativity. It predicts the displacement of light passing by a source of strong gravity such as a star and not just any amount, but a specific amount. The equations of relativity may given real world variables, such as the mass of a star and the position in the sky of a more distant star, so the equations become calculations about factual events. Not just theoretical but practical science. Because relativity determines that space and time together belong to something resembling a malleable fabric called spacetime, and gravity is required to distort that fabric like a bowling ball on a flat rubber sheet, we can expect the light of a distant star, to kink around a nearby star and make the distant star look like it is in a different place.

The best example of this and indeed the earliest of confirmations used our sun as the source of the nearby gravitational distortion and predicted the displacement of a distant star, to an extraordinary accuracy, but it had to wait until Sir Arthur Eddington´s polar expedition in 1919 to test it on the occasion of a total eclipse, because the sun would otherwise obliterate the tiny amount of light starlight radiating from the distant star.

I use this as an example of how we KNOW anything. You don´t have to understand relativity or WHY the spacetime curvature happens, only that the mathematics predicts it and if it is more than just speculation, it should be able to show some predictable effects in terms of cause and effect. The chance that there is a better explanation for such a particular and precise observation is remote to say the least. It is still possible that a better explanation may come to light, but the chance that relativity is completely wrong, is so unfathomably unlikely because it explains this highly specific behavior, and that was predicted ahead of time. No supernatural phenomenon is presented this way. You are presented with something laughable of not impossible, which makes no predictions (either specific or accurate), which follow from necessity and it holds no connection with any other thing know in reality. How then can the people who profess such things claim -in any way- that they know the things they are talking about are -in any sense- real?

How can knowledge (about anything) be found, if it is not based on testable, (ergo falsifiable) predictions. When were crystal ´energy´, ESP, charkras, or the afterlife tested by their proponents? How were they discovered? We should ALL smell a rat, when we are presented with some dubious claims (often to good to be true anyhow), that are not based on preceding knowledge, do not follow from testable predictions and are conveniently claimed to be beyond the testable limits of science. For anybody to claim to know these thing in the first place, just defies all credulity. The onus is not on science or the skeptic by any means to falsify claims that never stood to reason, least of all if they are just meaningless. How are we to address these concepts and ask what we can learn about them? If they are fictional or even meaningless it is not possible to learn ANYTHING from them or about them, because there is no THEM. What does it mean to KNOW anything? It is not a failing of science to address topics which are fanciful fabrications. The idea of science is to precede from what is established and consider what is possible, then test those speculative ideas that seem plausible. What goes against the myriad of supernatural ideas, is that they do not precede from anything which is established as existing knowledge. That not only makes them unanswerable to science, it makes them irrelevant to knowledge itself. In case that should seem like I lack an open mind, I will leave you with a very good insight on the Open Mind.


yordan

In order to add my five cents to this nice debate, I would point this :

In science fiction stories, the writers always talk about life on other planets being as being united. Do they talk about different countries on those planets? No

This is absolutely false. In a lot of science-fiction stories, two or more countries are fighting, and our heroes come in the middle of the battle and ask them to stop in order to join our peaceful galactic government!

The Simpleton1405241582

@Skepticus: Thanks for your in-depth observations. Much as I admire the thoughtful points you've written, I am in no position to comment on them. There's another player (starscream) to continue the constructive debate and I thank you for the good time I've had pondering about the points you've given.

This is absolutely false. In a lot of science-fiction stories, two or more countries are fighting, and our heroes come in the middle of the battle and ask them to stop in order to join our peaceful galactic government!

Then I must be too ignorant - could you give some examples for a "lot" of these stories, please? Be it novels, movies or any other form of sci-fi, planets have mostly been treated as a whole, and some of them mention cities and capitals but a wide-spread idea of countries on other planets? I haven't seen it till now though so could you please point them out?

Skepticus

In response to what I said:

What I was trying to express was the futility of supernatural ´explanations´ because they don´t even begin with understood concepts and their language is meaningless. They are manifestly untestable, because they are proffered as causeless or caused by some ´UNKNOWN´ forces/entities beyond nature. How anybody then professes to KNOW this in the first place, is the biggest mystery of all.

You replied:

Well I can't argue much about that. All I can say is that if we think these explanations are futile, then we shouldn't try to explain. Let it remain unexplained. Let those forces remain a mystery. Let's not waste much time discussing about something if we think beforehand that it's a bad idea to do so.

You are are attempting to play devils advocate on both sides of the fence here. With regards to supernatural explanations (what I was talking about), WE are not trying to explain anything. Moreover, you are completely missing my point. Supernatural ideas are flat out meaningless and not in any sense explanations of any kind ¨Let those forces remain a mystery.¨ WHAT FORCES? You are completely missing the point (I am beginning to suspect deliberately), that the evidence of supernatural effects is altogether absent from reality and there IS nothing to explain. WE, can´t then ´let those forces remain a mystery´ if no such thing exists. Furthermore, it is proponents of supernatural beliefs, that posit them as worthy contenders for the mantle of ´explanations´ using meaningless jargon and rhetoric that confuses science with fantasy. What we shouldn't try to explain, is that which doesn't exist. The point of trying to proclaim crystal ´energy´ for instance as an explanation of say, why Aunt Mary got better, is to pretend that an effect was caused by some form of energy (EUTS) that CAUSED Aunt Mary to get better. The proponent never demonstrates how they KNOW such healing energy exists in the first place and never shows how the allegedly correlated, effect is caused by the bogus energy. There´s just nothing mysterious to explain. The main trick is with inventing language and speaking as if those fictional concepts are real... Like you just did.

 

I didn´t say that it was futile to explain supernatural effects (as if there really were any to explain). I said supernatural explanations are futile. The broader point which is not getting through, is that alleged supernatural phenomenon (which we have -and can have- no reason to be convinced even exist) are by definition CAUSELESS and not based on existing knowledge of any-kind. So they have no logical connection with the web of causality that EXPLAINS how we even could know they exist, or why they are justified as necessary facts. Don´t try to pretend that we all agree supernatural phenomena exist and that what I was talking about was how difficult it is to explain why they do?

 

This is the core of the principal, of what makes the supernatural separate from and irreconcilable with the natural. If something must logically be accepted, as a consequence of other known things in this web of causality, then it must be natural. If it is supernatural then it´s not only exempt but prohibited from having any connection to any known causes and as such can not be explained at all. But that very same exemption is the divorce warrant that excludes them from all knowledge. You can´t KNOW crystal healing energy exists if it doesn't follow from causes. You can´t know something is supernatural by definition of what it means to ´know´ and what supernatural means.

 

We know things by establishing causal chains linked into a web of causality. If we discover something as unexplained, then there is no way to discount the possibility of it having a natural explanation. Invariably it does turn out to have a natural explanation, because it can be seen as a consequence of other known natural phenomena. To demonstrate that something is not natural, but rather supernatural, would be akin to demonstrating that it is impossible in principal and in fact. All that is known to be possible is also known to be natural.

 

 

Come on now, spiritual doesn't just mean spirits, ghosts, etc!

Do you want to play semantic word games or get down to objective reasoning?

 

There's more to spirituality than just that.

How do you know this?

 

I'm no expert on that matter so I won't go deep into that, but there are matters related to the mental power of an individual that can be accessed through techniques like meditation.

So we are talking about a cognitive process brought about in the activity of the brain then? Note: I have done some meditation in my time and I have experienced altered states of conciseness, that are quite remarkable to be quite sure and beneficial too, but altogether nothing that I would consider other worldly and certainly not supernatural.

 

There are claims that individuals immersed deep in spiritual powers can perform astonishing feats with their mind.

What spiritual powers? What IS a spiritual power? You appear to be talking about a fanciful ambiguous notion. If you wish to define what you are claiming to exist and demonstrate that it is something other than a natural phenomenon, then it´s your floor.

 

There are also claims that Elvis never died, but was abducted by aliens. Words like spirituality, faith and not to mention god, are favorites of the goal post shifting brigade. It is PURE ambiguity. In any case the common definition of spirituality is closely associated and based on the same etymology, as the word spirit. Whether it portends a supernatural or merely some seemingly numinous aspect of nature, depends upon who is running around with the goal posts at any given time. It would be FAR more honest and accurate, to attribute the properties of ambiguity words like spirituality, than to words like science, as you have so conveniently done. Perhaps you are fond of spirituality meaning what you profess it should mean, while words like science, are as slippery as a bar of soap in bath water, because you don´t want to ´come clean´

 

Maybe you're right. And maybe you're not. Everyone has their own perceptions about science and look at it in a different way.

Well I would certainly hope not. Science is a rational method of inquiry into how nature works. It follows rules that must be learned, as it is a community activity. What is up for grabs, is what evidence can be found for particular artifacts and phenomenon. If we wish to foster agreement and common understanding about nature, then learning the methods of research and reasoning is vital. Those methods do not differ according to what a persons opinion or cultural perspective may be. If you are looking for options for words to turn into ambiguous concepts, you might like to try spirituality, faith or god. Many people will profess these ideas to be quite concrete, as they (each of them) use these words to cement the goalposts wherever they (individually) want them to be.

 

As to how science works, maybe I don't know anything about it. Or maybe I'm just too lazy to explain myself better over here.

Yeah? Do ya think?

 

When talking about science being used for development I'm talking about using what we have achieved through all these years to help make people's lives better. Hmm I'm not doing a good job defending myself so for now I'll just agree - yes, I have a minuscule idea about science

Well that´s the smartest thing you have said so far. I´m not being facetious. As I have implored about science, the first thing anybody must do to learn something... anything! Is admit what they don´t know and then only begin the quest for knowledge based on what they do know.

 

That said, I don't think I can justify anything I've said so far, and can't comment on your other fine arguments.

NO!! No!! What you just said was great. But how to reconcile your pressing desire to answer questions about the origins of the universe, with the lament about the money spent on the Large Hadron Collider, that requires a rethink and that can´t happen in the total absence of, or even a minuscule idea about science.

 

So I'll stop by summarizing some of my views on what you've said - spending money on science is not a bad thing and we shouldn't stop in any case. You said we're not spending enough while I'm saying we should be spending on better things.

ER... No sorry. One of the subjects you have listed as a question worthy of this alternative research (origin of universe), is precisely what you condemned in that it is the central focus of the LHC. Another is mainstream science (extinction of dinosaurs), that hardly counts as cutting edge research and has fairly well run it´s course. While the existence of God (as an omnipotent sentient being) is no more a scientific concept than is the existence of the tooth fairy. While the ´direction of mankind´ is likewise not amenable to science unless you carve out some objective parameters. We are still orbiting the sun as I understand, in the same direction as always if that helps.

 

I think both can be done if we recognize where the money is actually going. Science does give us knowledge and we should try to use this knowledge to improve our lives; not make it worse.

!!Sigh!! When will people understand that the manner in which knowledge is used, has nothing to do with the manner in which it is gained. How is not having a Large Hadron Collider going to prevent us from using what knowledge we do have poorly? I think we do quite well as it happens. Besides crass consumerism and the arms race, I would not give up the vast majority of the technological providence of science, but I also have twice as many years to enjoy it. Above all I can think of nothing that is more noble, than the pursuit of understanding why we are here at all. Why should this universe exist at all, and why should it´s laws be the way appear to be? Was intelligent life inevitable or even probable? Besides saving us from whatever perils our uncertain future may hold, science is a bountiful lens of insight trained upon nature. Eating shitting and pumping out babies, then teaching them to believe, believe, believe, in ignorant superstitious dogma, THAT is what we need to do much much less of. Nature is your god and science is your savior. Give thanks to the REAL ALMIGHTY.

Skepticus

@Skepticus: Thanks for your in-depth observations. Much as I admire the thoughtful points you've written, I am in no position to comment on them. There's another player (starscream) to continue the constructive debate and I thank you for the good time I've had pondering about the points you've given.

I had a good time too, pondering, er... ah... well, I had a GOOD time.

The Simpleton1405241582

I had a good time too, pondering, er... ah... well, I had a GOOD time. laugh.gif

Lol you don't have to be modest - you can say directly that my posts didn't make much/any sense I did the best I could but its not up to the expectations of the forum so the best thing is that I stay quiet

Skepticus

[Note: This was supposed to be the first of a two part series responding to the same post]

 

 

By "beginning" I mean the beginning of life, in whatever way it was created.

Well I will have to object, that it very much matters in which way life came about and er... IF it was ¨created¨ is another example of baseless conjecture. What mountains of evidence establishes beyond reasonable doubt, is that primordial life had no capacity whatsoever to contemplate anything at all, let alone the mysteries of it´s own existence. Like I said, you might just as well be contemplating the aerodynamics of Tinkerbell´s wings. Better off to start with the beginnings of human society, an advancement clearly made possible by the development of language and advanced tool making. Although I don´t think we could have been asking any interesting questions until many thousands of years latter.

 

And by "ended up" I just meant we got so used to asking questions that it became like a habit, i.e., it ended up becoming a habit to us. I never said it was a bad thing.

No?

 

Right from the beginning, we ended up asking too many questions..

Sounds a bit like a lament to me.

 

 

In the very next sentence I say its a good thing that we asked all those questions or else we would still be livng in caves (you commented that this was a good point - so why did you think I was referring to it as a bad thing?!)

Why do you think? Why did you claim that we asked TOO MANY questions? Too many for what or who?

 

What you said is right - we can never ask enough questions

Now you appear to be contradicting yourself. You wonder why I am confused?

 

 

and asking new questions isn't wrong. It's just that we've already got many questions to answer already that it the new questions seem to pile up on top of the old, or else the old questions are put aside to find answers for the new ones.

The way I see it, the new questions follow from the answers to the old. I don´t count meaningless questions and loaded questions that make presumption about baseless or meaningless concepts.

 

 

Lol ok I'll get to the point. Some of the questions I had in mind were something like:

 

--> Proof of origins of the universe

--> Death of dinosaurs

-->Existence of God

-->Where is mankind headed to

--> Proof of origins of the universe

That isn´t a question my friend. That isn´t even a statement. That is a meaningless sentence fragment. Sorry if English is not your first language but in any language, questions need to make sense. You want to prove the Universe had an origin perhaps. Or perhaps you wish to prove that the Universe originated in some particular way. Perhaps you wish for others to do the work of ´proving´ their particular claims. You can look to my previous post for my take on the idea of PROOF.

 

Relative probability of cosmological origin theories, is available NOW and has been for a very long time. Fifteen years ago you could have been forgiven for holding out on such ideas as whether the universe is open or closed. Ten years hence, whether the universe was once compressed into a unimaginably dense singularity might still have been an open question. The evidence found by way of such research as the COBE (COsmic Background Explorer) ruled out numerous competing cosmologies, but as usual opened up even more questions. If you wish to ask a more specific question about the origin of the universe, it helps to understand something about what has been discovered first, then construct a meaningful, direct, grammatically correct question, that knowledges what can reasonably be considered questionable, on the basis of cogent reasoning and valid evidence.

 

--> Death of dinosaurs

Again, that isn´t a question is it? Again, that is a meaningless sentence fragment. OK. I can presume, to read between the lines and speculate that what you wish to know, is something like ´How did the dinosaurs become extinct?´, but it is highly suggestive of lazy, sloppy thinking, that you fail to articulate meaningful questions, based on any well informed understandings of current knowledge within the area of knowledge, in which you are suggesting we are lacking answers. Perhaps you might consider going back and rephrasing the question in light of existing research about the subject. Suggest the reasons why you feel existing understandings about this subject, leave important questions open and how we might better consider the current conclusions.

 

-->Existence of God

Yet again, do I need to reiterate the abomination of English this (and I mean it literally) ´non-sense´ represents? In this case, I can´t even begin to fathom what question you have in mind, nor who you portend as the rightful owner of accountability to whatever the question is that you seem to be avoiding. I can smell the god of the gaps around here. He has a distinct odor and when his followers arrive, there is a distinct non-committal way they assert questions, that rhetorically imply unanswered questions in science, without explaining what those questions are and how they know this; nor indeed what the better answer is and how they know that. Rather, the implication is that if there is anything left unexplained goddidit.

 

I won´t point fingers TS, but you should be getting the idea by now, that if you want to make a bold claim and defend it with valid reasoning and evidence which appeals to parsimony, then I am all ears. The reality of something such as a god is not something anybody needs to take on board, unless and until it is explained what precisely is meant by such an expression and how exactly we should consider it as having any relevance to any discussion contemplating MEANINGFUL answers to MEANINGFUL questions. The onus is on the claimant (as always) to establish a case for the existence of anything and meanwhile, we might just as well ask questions about the existence of the Flying Spaghetti Monster or The Invisible Pink Unicorn or Russell´s Teapot for that matter.

 

 

-->Where is mankind headed to

At last, bar for the lack of the appropriate punctuation you have succeed in asking a grammatically correct question. Well done. If it weren't for the gross ambiguity of it, this question might have even been meaningful. Before we even begin to sort out what you mean by this question, we should first ask if what you had in mind is even relevant to science as an objective enterprise inquiring into natural cause and effect relationships, and how the answers proffered can be expected to establish any objective understanding.

 

I could go on if you like but I think you get the point.

What point? I can smell a fish, if that was the point.

 

There have been endless debates on questions like these but there hasn't been a satisfactory conclusion in any of them. This is why I said there are questions piling up. There have been efforts to answer these questions although the results haven't been satisfactory.

Who´s fault do you consider this to be?

 

In the meantime other issues have taken up the time of our researchers and thus it's become like a long waiting list.

Wait! Do you actually consider it to be the job of the scientific establishment to contemplate and answer questions regarding the existence of a god? How about the FSM then? Is sentient celestial pasta, also the providence scientific research?

 

As for where mankind is headed, have you considered consulting sociological texts. Considering the masses of scientifically illiterate people in the developed world, who haven´t yet woken up to where mankind has come from, the time to press for speculations of this kind seems rather remote. How do you propose to make an objective study of this kind? When you get past the ambiguity of your question, you might then consider the subjectivity and again contemplate the objectivity of science and then formulate a cogent line of inquiry. Nobody is prevented from doing such research, but it is generally covered in sociology, which sometimes also masquerades as a kind of science.

 

As for the extinction of the dinosaurs. Well Rumpelstiltskin, you might have some catching up to do. And for the origin of the universe, well to answer REAL questions about REALITY (outside of bronze-age fairytales that is), we are going to need that Large Hadron Collider after all. What do you think the LHC is for?

 

And in case you didn't notice, the OP of this thread didn't mention specifically what the "questions" are about. Almost all the replies follow suit.

That only serves demonstrate the need to ask meaningful and relevant questions. It should be considered fairly reasonable to assume that ¨all of our questions¨ doesn´t include meaningless or irrelevant questions. I haven´t gone out of my way to point out the futility of asking a question like ´Who will win the next world cup?´ It isn´t a question relevant to science. If the OP were intended to include the set of all possible questions, then the question ¨Does science Answer All Our Questions?¨ itself would be a silly question. Of course it doesn´t. I maybe bending over backwards to turn a blind eye to ambiguity and subjectivity as it is., but I assume that the range of questions posited must be relevant to science to begin with, or the strait answer is don´t be ridiculous. Sheeesh!

 

 

Yes it's the answers that saved us, but we should remain equally thankful for the questions as well. Without them life would have continued as always without any significant change and everyone of us might have dying early as you pointed out. So it's good that we got the answers, and at the same time, we should be glad that the questions were there.

Yes! and the more questions we find the more interesting the universe becomes and the more doors are open to solving real problems and answering real questions. So stay tuned.

The Simpleton1405241582

[Note: This was supposed to be the first of a two part series responding to the same post]

You needed to build a series to bash my comments? Wow that's actually quite flattering. You actually took the time to write all of this, weaving complex sentences, just to prove my comments were lame? Well anyway you got the satisfaction of hitting out at me (not to mention the additional benefit of myCENTs )

 

On the topic of Does Science Answer All Our Questions? , I've had my full. I mentioned this earlier and you should have at least held back your comments because I had made myself clear that I'm not going to talk more about it, and I don't see a flurry of activity from other members any soon. Anyway, your post did make me type a few more comments, though completely unrelated to the original topic but regarding something which you brought up.

 

That isn´t a question my friend. That isn´t even a statement. That is a meaningless sentence fragment. blink.gif Sorry if English is not your first language but in any language, questions need to make sense.

Again, that isn´t a question is it? Again, that is a meaningless sentence fragment. OK. I can presume, to read between the lines and speculate that what you wish to know, is something like ´How did the dinosaurs become extinct?´

Yet again, do I need to reiterate the abomination of English this (and I mean it literally) ´non-sense´ represents?

At last, bar for the lack of the appropriate punctuation you have succeed in asking a grammatically correct question. Well done. wink.gif

Why do you keep focusing on the fragments? They were in a list usually represented by bullets and it's common to use fragments. You did focus on the meaning later (in detail) but all this pointing out about grammar was unnecessary. This isn't a creative writing community! And in any case, English is my third language but I don't write something like "Me no know English", do I?

 

it is highly suggestive of lazy, sloppy thinking, that you fail to articulate meaningful questions, based on any well informed understandings of current knowledge within the area of knowledge, in which you are suggesting we are lacking answers. Perhaps you might consider going back and rephrasing the question in light of existing research about the subject.

What was the intention behind constructing this mountain of words? You already made yourself clear that I wasn't using good English so why do you extend it with this?

 

And now before I end up writing more meaningless lines, I'll reach out for the period.


mahesh2k

What was the intention behind constructing this mountain of words? You already made yourself clear that I wasn't using good English so why do you extend it with this?And now before I end up writing more meaningless lines, I'll reach out for the period.


Looks like you're not in mood of discussion i guess :/
That is why you consider this quoting as bashing. You're considering quoting separately everytime as offense, which is not. This is how online debates and discussion goes. Cheer up mate...

Бојан

Yeah, i think the sience is the only answer to our questions.


Skepticus

You needed to build a series to bash my comments? Wow that's actually quite flattering.

Sorry to disappoint you, but I start writing sometimes and just cant stop. It´s an idiosyncrasy of mine, but don´t let that stop you from stroking your ego (and that other thing)

 

You actually took the time to write all of this, weaving complex sentences, just to prove my comments were lame?

NO! I had my own points in the discussion, that I was presenting and none of them were to prove your comments were lame. The fact that your comments were lame was incidental. If you were focused on the point of the discourse, you might realize the word does not revolve around you.

 

 

On the topic of Does Science Answer All Our Questions? , I've had my full. I mentioned this earlier and you should have at least held back your comments because I had made myself clear that I'm not going to talk more about it,..

Well I didn't get the memo until after I had written this, and besides that isn't going to stop me criticizing what you have already written. The discussion may continue whether you wish to engage in it or not.

 

Why do you keep focusing on the fragments?

Because they fail to convey an articulate, meaningful, question or statement.

 

They were in a list usually represented by bullets and it's common to use fragments.

Is common and it´s bad grammar in every case. It is not compulsory to use incomplete sentences in a bullet list, nor is it compulsory to use bullet lists at all, if there were some reason they might get in the way of contributing to meaningful discourse. Did somebody hold a gun loaded with a bullet list to your head?

 

You did focus on the meaning later (in detail) but all this pointing out about grammar was unnecessary.

No I didn't focus on the meaning of those sentence fragments. From where I stand, they have no meaning. They do however identify a subject matter. I pointed out the ambiguity in general and addressed the subject matter, pointing out also, where I might be reading between the lines and addressing several interpretations to illustrate the ambiguity. The purpose of pointing out bad grammar, in this case is not for the sheer pleasure of being pedantic. The questions you are alluding to, are representative of the case you were making, for science to answer with more useful research than it already does. Your commitment of meaningful questions in that context, makes the difference between ambiguous rhetoric and cogent debate.

 

This isn't a creative writing community! And in any case, English is my third language but I don't write something like "Me no know English", do I?

Precisely. If you will kindly look at the above sentence and note it´s structure and grammar, you will see the writer is quite capable of constructing a grammatically correct English sentence, with valid syntax and structure. You don´t write ¨Me no know English¨ because it isn't true. You are perfectly capable of constructing cogent, grammatically correct, English statements and questions. In fact. a person could be forgiven for assuming English is your first language. If it looked like you were struggling with English I wouldn't be so blunt.

 

(In the voice of David Attenborough...)

On the Serengeti savannas, there exists a species of bird (I forget the name), which, because it nests on the ground, has adapted to a very vulnerable environment, by luring predators away from it´s nest. It does this, by feigning sickness or injury. It pretends to be lame in order to entice the predator to give chase and thereby creates a diversion from the nest. At the very last moment, the healthy bird takes to the sky, leaving the predator to wander off hungry. You remind me of this bird, because I believe you are feigning your lameness both in your reason for abandoning the debate, and also here with this ¨crying wolf¨ about English skills.

 

it is highly suggestive of lazy, sloppy thinking, that you fail to articulate meaningful questions, based on any well informed understandings of current knowledge within the area of knowledge, in which you are suggesting we are lacking answers. Perhaps you might consider going back and rephrasing the question in light of existing research about the subject.

What was the intention behind constructing this mountain of words? You already made yourself clear that I wasn't using good English so why do you extend it with this?
What do you think the intention was? Unlike some of the discourse you have contributed, this statement CONTAINS it´s own meaning.The intention is to communicate this meaning. It´s very purpose is to convey that meaning. It means what it says. Apparently you are new to the idea that statements actually contain their own meaning. Yeah I know!! How incredibly convenient huh? The idea is that you look at the words, interpret their meaning and right there you can have instant comprehension of the thoughts expressed by another person. I call it COM-MUN-I-CAT-ING

 

In any case, I am not focusing on your perfectly adequate English skills in this comment, but rather pointing out the poverty of your claim that science lacks answers, based on what can be inferred from the sentence fragments you have contributed, as questions and the implications this brings to bare on your intellectual discipline. Instead of first understanding the research which you are second guessing and deliberating upon, you have ´shot from the hip´ as they say, and put your foot in your mouth. You don´t even know what the Large Hadron Collider is for, but you simultaneously want more research on the origins of the universe and less money for projects like the LHC. It is sloppy thinking I suggest, BOTH, that you have such an ill-conceived understanding of the subject you are deliberating upon AND that you do not make the effort, to properly articulate a well considered opinion based on such understanding.

 

Your saving grace is that you have the humility to admit that you don´t know something, but even then, you lack precision and use this as a ´lame bird´ defense, in order to excuse yourself from a debate you were more than happy to contribute to earlier. Rather than concede any particular points, stand corrected and learn, you pass in a vague and general ¨well I don´t know much about all that, so I´ll just bow out¨, kind of cop out. Thanking me for my considered points without responding to how they reflect upon your own, is paying insincere lip service IMHO. Admitting you don´t know about a particular subject is noble, as well as a necessary prerequisite to learn about that subject, but it´s doesn´t excuse pretending to know about that subject in the first place, nor is such an admission any consolation for admitting you were wrong. I hold little hope that your admission of ignorance is a prelude to a search for better understanding anyhow. So the possible benefit of admitting what you don´t know in order that you may find out, may be a totally redundant advantage.

 

I hope that I am wrong about this, but if you were sincere, I don´t think you would be running away from the debate, but staying in to ask questions and revise your understandings. Debate doesn't have to be about animosity and adversarial opposition. It can be about searching for common understandings, reaching agreement and finding the dialectic That of course depends on the participants having some measure of intellectual integrity and willingness to clearly state their position, make unambiguous claims, reason honestly and stand corrected if they must. That is how it is done in the peer review process of science, and that is what everybody should learn to do. It cant be done where dogmatic, superstitious or supernatural beliefs are concerned. They are anathema to honesty of all forms. I said previously, that I smell the god of the gaps around here. That odor hasn't yet diminished. I expect it to fade sometime after you make your final post.

 

And now before I end up writing more meaningless lines, I'll reach out for the period.

I think you also need to purchase a more compact keyboard.

Skepticus

It may be too much to expect but I hope you watch this video TS. You could learn something. You might even enjoy it.

 

THE BIG BANG MACHINE


The Simpleton1405241582

Wow you certainly have a good skill of making long posts that seem to go on and on. Good for you. You've said a lot of things against me and my behaviour and although replying to each of them will give me a nice long post of my own, I won't give in to the temptation. For one, I don't think the world revolves around me - people who think that way talk in a very unique manner, and that's just not me. Next you are right about some of the things you said about me and I don't know whether you said those with an intention to help me improve myself or just to mock me, but in any case, thanks for trying

I've said in my introduction post that the only reason I was here is to earn myCENTs. I've tried to do it by participating in discussions like these. It's not of much use to continue discussing if I have nothing more sensible to add. All that "lame bird" stuff you said - it's true to some extent, but I'm not feigning anything. I just feel it's the right time to stop for me to stop so that the discussion can move on more sensibly.

I said previously, that I smell the god of the gaps around here. That odor hasn't yet diminished. I expect it to fade sometime after you make your final post. dry.gif

You got that right - this is my last post for this thread so you can enjoy a meaningful discussion from now onwards. Just a small suggestion - if you have anything more to say about how I'm "feigning" or "faking" anything, don't put it in this thread; it only deviates the topic. Start a thread in the Life Talk forum about this sort of behaviour and say all that you want to

grim reaper1666

"what will I have for breakfast?"


you can have anything you want provided you have the ingridents to make it. science can answer alot of questions but unlike people say it works on creating a theory on something and then testing it to see if it is right. what i have noticed about some relgious people is they take a book to be total a utter truth and block out anything else. i can guaruntee you that some relgious people who follow the bible literally might even think because the bible doesn't mention dinosaurs then dinosaurs never existed. and because no other planets with life are mentioned in the bible then they don't exist either in my opinion that is a backwards way of doing it, thinking of a theory and then testing if it is true is better. instead of creating your theory of apes can fly and not testing it.


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