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Author Topic: Why wont God heal amputees? - atheist's responce  (Read 5413 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: November 04, 2011, 01:41:03 AM »

Well, I'm glad you all worked this out amongst yourselves. But I think you missed the point of the link referenced in the OP. The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence. Every time a 'miracle' takes place, it tends to be something just beyond what science can fully explain. No miracles like regrowing as a limb or the re-sequencing of already sequenced and verified DNA ever seem to happen, all so-called 'miracles' tend to happen beyond the frontiers of science. To an outside observer, it all just seems too convenient.
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« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2011, 01:48:40 AM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.
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« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2011, 01:50:56 AM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.
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« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2011, 01:56:29 AM »

Well, I'm glad you all worked this out amongst yourselves. But I think you missed the point of the link referenced in the OP. The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence. Every time a 'miracle' takes place, it tends to be something just beyond what science can fully explain. No miracles like regrowing as a limb or the re-sequencing of already sequenced and verified DNA ever seem to happen, all so-called 'miracles' tend to happen beyond the frontiers of science. To an outside observer, it all just seems too convenient.

I can see that, and often wonder.
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« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2011, 02:25:26 AM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.


Really? You can? I'd love to see you do that. Even Richard Dawkins says that science is still working on the problem of how something came to be from nothing. Of course, I imagine that you're much brighter than Richard Dawkins (and I'm not kidding you about that, nor am I flattering you.)




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« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2011, 02:37:49 AM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.


Really? You can? I'd love to see you do that. Even Richard Dawkins says that science is still working on the problem of how something came to be from nothing. Of course, I imagine that you're much brighter than Richard Dawkins (and I'm not kidding you about that, nor am I flattering you.)

Selam

Interesting question, I'm not sure I accept the concept, or existence, of this 'nothing' you speak of. If you're merely referencing the Null Set, then I think I know where to go from there, but if you mean something else, you'll have to be more specific.

Of course, I find it interesting that you immediately jump onto Achronos' band wagon of trying to turn the initial question around to force me to prove a negative. As though anything one makes up is true if it cannot be proven false. By that logic, your god exists with the same likelihood that the tooth fairy, Easter bunny, and flying spaghetti monster exist.
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« Reply #6 on: November 04, 2011, 03:16:32 AM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.
Why would the universe need an explanation?
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« Reply #7 on: November 04, 2011, 03:17:36 AM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.


Really? You can? I'd love to see you do that. Even Richard Dawkins says that science is still working on the problem of how something came to be from nothing. Of course, I imagine that you're much brighter than Richard Dawkins (and I'm not kidding you about that, nor am I flattering you.)

Selam

Interesting question, I'm not sure I accept the concept, or existence, of this 'nothing' you speak of. If you're merely referencing the Null Set, then I think I know where to go from there, but if you mean something else, you'll have to be more specific.

Of course, I find it interesting that you immediately jump onto Achronos' band wagon of trying to turn the initial question around to force me to prove a negative. As though anything one makes up is true if it cannot be proven false. By that logic, your god exists with the same likelihood that the tooth fairy, Easter bunny, and flying spaghetti monster exist.


But the universe does exist. And if it exists, then there must be a reason that it exists. You claim to know the reason for its existence, i.e. you stated that you can "explain the universe without a deity." Perhaps you over-stated the matter? If so, fine. But that's quite a claim to make, that you can "explain the universe without a deity." In fact, objective atheistic scientists will not even make the claim that they can "explain the universe." After all, it's a vast universe, and we are only a minute, infinitesimal part of it.


Selam
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« Reply #8 on: November 04, 2011, 03:19:44 AM »

Well, I'm glad you all worked this out amongst yourselves. But I think you missed the point of the link referenced in the OP. The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence. Every time a 'miracle' takes place, it tends to be something just beyond what science can fully explain. No miracles like regrowing as a limb or the re-sequencing of already sequenced and verified DNA ever seem to happen, all so-called 'miracles' tend to happen beyond the frontiers of science. To an outside observer, it all just seems too convenient.

now this is not to an attempt to convince you or any other atheist , these are just few of my random thoughts when I think of miracles and God and such. I do understand it all seems too convenient when miracles happen beyond the frontiers of known science but what seems to be false does not necessarily must be false.now using a bible to argue for the existence of  God and His miracles is nearly impossible if not foolish thing to do. but for the sake of argument if we were to consider the bible as a historical reference to the alledged miracles, the said reactivating of DNA, regeneration of neurons and neural connections, muscular regeneration, the re-sequencing of cellular DNA that had a malfunctioning stop sequence thus have turned cancerous and malignant. hemophiliac DNA altered and altered instantly, oh yeah the most mind bogling one: raising the dead by an unknown method to us yet of regenerating and reversing the chaos of the already decaying flesh plus maintaining a fully functional human being and not a catatonic brain dead /vegetable, i hate this term/ person. as to all these and more yes science can not verify them but at the time even those none scientific minds were struggling with what they were seeing so we are not alone in doubting what we see and hear. but there were also those whose vested interest was to disprove the said miracles and John 9 especially is an interesting investigation of a born blind man whose eyes given sight and some even speculate his very eyes might have been created at that time , but whatever the case, the seeing of the born blind created a major chaos which lead to the inquisition and excommunication of the man by those who found his very existence an affront to their cause.then there is the Resurrection of the Christ that was believed so completely by the previous doubters and believes of surviving to see the next day, that these very same people will rush to their death with utter conviction and joy. I love science and I believe the natural world can be explained away by it as much as currently possible with out contradicting the possibility of a creator force behind it however it seems people have a different idea of what that Creator should do and should not do to prove himself to them. I might be one of them, but I also know that there is another possibility as unacceptable as it might be to my mind. the creator is quite content in what he has already displayed before  our eyes to see as being enough of proof of himself and sufficient also for accomplishing the process of what we are created to be and we simply do not agree on that point.  Smiley

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« Reply #9 on: November 04, 2011, 03:26:22 AM »


Interesting question, I'm not sure I accept the concept, or existence, of this 'nothing' you speak of. If you're merely referencing the Null Set, then I think I know where to go from there, but if you mean something else, you'll have to be more specific.
But what is the set that contains the nothing in it. But even using the Null Set there is room for the spiritual.

Quote
Of course, I find it interesting that you immediately jump onto Achronos' band wagon of trying to turn the initial question around to force me to prove a negative. As though anything one makes up is true if it cannot be proven false. By that logic, your god exists with the same likelihood that the tooth fairy, Easter bunny, and flying spaghetti monster exist.
Never asked you to prove a negative and it wasn't an argument from ignorance either. I also did not suggest that making up an unprovable god is true.
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« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2011, 08:29:53 AM »

DNA
...is the miracle itself.
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« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2011, 09:56:13 AM »


agree to a large extent

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« Reply #12 on: November 04, 2011, 11:14:07 AM »

Coming from a rather weird form of atheism, my own conversion came mostly from the experience that belief in God made me a happier person.  I know, that sounds strange, but that was the beginning.

I saw that people who wanted to get off of drugs and alcohol ended up in 12-step programs that healed them.  I met prisoners who were 'bad dudes' who converted and left their violent ways.  I also saw that 'whole' could be far more miserable than amputees.

My opinion is that it is overly simplistic to think that human beings could be happy in a perfect world.  I have seen great wealth and power bring misery.  I have also seen most of those who have sought for a spiritual connection to God somehow find happiness amidst asceticism, suffering and persecution.

All that I can say for sure is that a humble faith in Christ leads to inner peace, and that is what I am searching for.  You can say I am deluded, but I am a 'happy deluded' if you must think me deceived.  I'm also far less harmful than I once was.  When I did not believe, out of my fears of having to fend for myself I was far more reckless about the safety of others than I am now.

Sure, their are people who abuse religion.  There are also people who abuse atheism (c.f. 20th century European history).  It is within part of our present nature to use whatever cloak we can find to hide our embarrassing habits and temptations.

The introduction of atheism to the world stage, beginning with the French Revolution, is relatively new.  Societies world-wide have changed, but they were changing before then, too.  There is a trajectory that atheism does not have seemd to affect: people are still miserable and addicted, with or without atheism or religion.  That's because, in the end, the existence of either has no effect on the person until he decides to accept their premise.

Since the premise of atheism is that humans are as they are, and their is no help outside of human agency, I have so say that this is not my experience.  In my own case, self-will has not worked so well.  Perhaps this is not your experience, and that's fine because my happiness does not depend on your belief, and neither should yours depend on my agreement with you.

Getting back to the topic, God doesn't need to heal amputees to make them happy.  In fact, if He just went around and fixed eveything that broke, we'd break much more and take it all for granted.  Part of what makes this life special is that it is delicate and temporary.  The amputee reminds himself and those around him that the dangers of this world are real. There are real costs to our actions and our lives, and we must cherish what we have been given.

Or, he can sit around and pity himself and be miserable... with or without God.
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« Reply #13 on: November 04, 2011, 12:12:56 PM »

As an ex-atheist I can only suggest that you are asking a question that defies rational explanation. Nothing in faith reveals itself via rational explanation. In fact, reason is inimical to belief.

It is a fool's errand for a believer to "bite" when this particular bone is thrown. In accepting the terms of the argument, you've lost already.
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« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2011, 01:17:35 PM »

atheist apologetics on oc.net...why?
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« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2011, 01:57:56 PM »

Coming from a rather weird form of atheism, my own conversion came mostly from the experience that belief in God made me a happier person.  I know, that sounds strange, but that was the beginning.

I saw that people who wanted to get off of drugs and alcohol ended up in 12-step programs that healed them.  I met prisoners who were 'bad dudes' who converted and left their violent ways.  I also saw that 'whole' could be far more miserable than amputees.

My opinion is that it is overly simplistic to think that human beings could be happy in a perfect world.  I have seen great wealth and power bring misery.  I have also seen most of those who have sought for a spiritual connection to God somehow find happiness amidst asceticism, suffering and persecution.

All that I can say for sure is that a humble faith in Christ leads to inner peace, and that is what I am searching for.  You can say I am deluded, but I am a 'happy deluded' if you must think me deceived.  I'm also far less harmful than I once was.  When I did not believe, out of my fears of having to fend for myself I was far more reckless about the safety of others than I am now.

Sure, their are people who abuse religion.  There are also people who abuse atheism (c.f. 20th century European history).  It is within part of our present nature to use whatever cloak we can find to hide our embarrassing habits and temptations.

The introduction of atheism to the world stage, beginning with the French Revolution, is relatively new.  Societies world-wide have changed, but they were changing before then, too.  There is a trajectory that atheism does not have seemd to affect: people are still miserable and addicted, with or without atheism or religion.  That's because, in the end, the existence of either has no effect on the person until he decides to accept their premise.

Since the premise of atheism is that humans are as they are, and their is no help outside of human agency, I have so say that this is not my experience.  In my own case, self-will has not worked so well.  Perhaps this is not your experience, and that's fine because my happiness does not depend on your belief, and neither should yours depend on my agreement with you.

Getting back to the topic, God doesn't need to heal amputees to make them happy.  In fact, if He just went around and fixed eveything that broke, we'd break much more and take it all for granted.  Part of what makes this life special is that it is delicate and temporary.  The amputee reminds himself and those around him that the dangers of this world are real. There are real costs to our actions and our lives, and we must cherish what we have been given.

Or, he can sit around and pity himself and be miserable... with or without God.


Just wanted to say that I like this response a lot, and it accords with my own prior experience of atheism.
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« Reply #16 on: November 04, 2011, 02:59:32 PM »

Maybe God does not like to be self-evident.. Perhaps he likes people to find him through faith.. Or perhaps he doesn`t care.. Perhaps he is a distant God that established the laws of nature and let things happen after them.. Perhaps we only get at the enclosure with Him when we die ... Or perhaps He doesn`t even exist... Perhaps he is an imaginary friend for grown-ups.



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« Reply #17 on: November 04, 2011, 03:02:11 PM »

I know that this is really lousy reasoning, but if a mountain disappeared in Japan and appeared in Kentucky, or if limbs appeared on amputees everywhere, or whole countries spontaneously combusted in seconds, I feel like it would be a lot easier to believe in God.

Well, either Him or aliens. Still, the playing field is decreased.

That's what I think, anyway.

Really? Christ raised a man from death. And the reaction of more than a few people was then to plan to kill Him.

That is the interesting tie between that sign and the parable of Lazarus.

Even if we take your argument, then the question would be what god?

Faith that relies on signs is one that can't last without nourishment. Many people claim to see "miracles" all the time.

We believe we consume the Living Body and Blood of Christ the Son of the One God and look at how we all behave or at least I do.

How many of us take that mystery to our condemnation? I don't think flashy miracles would do much in the long run.

People die of x and we swear we will change our lives. And week later (hours) back to business as normal.

Faith that leads to change which leads to greater faith is truly a wonder.

Faith that expects change to happen on our terms or wait to be convinced is mere paganism. Our God is often a God that is absent. There are no promises. Crosses till the end. The funny thing is whether we take up our Crosses or not, they are still there. If we are honest, or if I am, I just want them taken away.

I don't want to suffer with my God who suffered for me. I want health, wealth, and happiness. I keep trying to make the Gospels tell me that is the good news, but I just can't find it.

So if your arm is restored, it is so you can use it to glorify God by serving others and suffering with them. Not to work on your back hand at the tennis club.

Tennis ain't my game, but you get my point I think.

Again, the general you here, just playing off your post.





why would wanting health,wealth and happiness be wrong?why would being happy be wrong?if that is so at what good does happiness exist?
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« Reply #18 on: November 04, 2011, 11:17:46 PM »

Enjoying what you've earned is one thing. Letting it become an excessive craving, though, can be problematic. Think about the people who gamble too much. They need help.
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« Reply #19 on: November 05, 2011, 10:08:01 AM »

I always liked Frederick Buechner's perspective:

If God really exists, why in heaven’s name does God not prove that he exists instead of leaving us here in our terrible uncertainty?  Why does he not show his face so that at last a despairing world can have hope?  At one time or another, everyone asks such a question.  In some objectifiably verifiable and convincing way, we want God himself to demonstrate his own existence.  Deep in our hearts, I suspect that this is what all of us want, unbelievers no less than believers.  And I have wondered sometimes what would happen if God were to do just that.  What would happen if God did set about demonstrating his existence in some dramatic and irrefutable way?

Suppose, for instance, that God were to take the great, dim river of the Milky Way as we see it from down here flowing across the night sky and were to brighten it up a little and then rearrange it so that all of a sudden one night the world would step outside and look up at the heavens and see not the usual haphazard scattering of stars but, written out in letters lightyears tall, the sentece I REALLY EXIST or GOD IS.  If I were going to try to write a story or a play about such an event, I would start, of course, with the first night that this great theological headline appeared there in the stars, with suns and moons to dot the I’s and the tails of comets to cross the t’s.  And I would try to show some of the ways I can imagine people might respond to it.  I would show some of them sinking to their knees, not because they are especially religious people but just because it might seem somehow the only natural thing to do under the circumstances.  They would perhaps do it without even thinking about it, just crumpling down on their knees there in the tall grass out behind the garage.  Some of them I would show running back into their houses in terror - guilty ones in terror of it - just GOD IS written up there in the fire of the stars - and maybe in everyone some degree of terror at just the sheer awesome vastness of the Unknown suddenly making itself known.

Several years would go by and God’s proof of himself would still be blazing away every night for all to read.  In order to convince people that the message was not just some million-to-one freak of nature, I would be tempted to have God keep on rewriting it in different languages, sometimes accompanying it with bursts of pure color or with music so celestial that finally the last hardened skeptic would be convinced that God must indeed exist after all.  Then the way that I would have it end might be this.  I would have a child look up at the sky some night, just a plain, garden-variety child with perhaps a wad of bubble gum in his cheek.  If this were to be a movie, I would have a close-up here of just the child’s eyes with the stars reflected in them, and I would have him spell out the message syllable by syllable.  Let us say that this night it happens to be in French - J’existe quand-meme. C’est moi, le bon Dieu.  And deep in the heavens there would be the usual strains of sublime music.  And then I would have the child turn to his father, or maybe, with the crazy courage of childhood, I would have him turn to God himself, and the words that I would have him speak would be words to make the angels gasp.  “So what if God exists?” he would say.  “What difference does that make?”  And in the twinkling of an eye the message would fade away for good and the celestial music would be heard no more, or maybe they would continue for centuries to come, but it would no longer make any difference.

We all want to be certain, we all want proof, but the kind of proof we tend to want - scientifically or philosophically demonstrable proof that would silence all doubts once and for all - would not in the long run, I think, answer the fearful depths of our need at all.  For what we need to know, of course, is not just that God exists, not just that beyond the steely brightness of the stars there is a cosmic intelligence of some kind that keeps the whole show going, but that there is a God right here in the thick of our day-by-day lives who may not be writing messages about himself in the stars but who in one way or another is trying to get messages through our blindness as we move around down here knee-deep in the fragrant muck and misery and marvel of the world.  It is not objective proof of God’s existence that we want but, whether we use religious language for it or not, the experience of God’s presence.  That is the miracle we are really after.  And that is also, I think, the miracle that we really get.
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« Reply #20 on: November 05, 2011, 10:17:06 AM »

If God hasn't met your expectations, then lower your expectations.  Grin
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« Reply #21 on: November 05, 2011, 11:07:07 AM »

I know that this is really lousy reasoning, but if a mountain disappeared in Japan and appeared in Kentucky, or if limbs appeared on amputees everywhere, or whole countries spontaneously combusted in seconds, I feel like it would be a lot easier to believe in God.

Well, either Him or aliens. Still, the playing field is decreased.

That's what I think, anyway.

Really? Christ raised a man from death. And the reaction of more than a few people was then to plan to kill Him.

That is the interesting tie between that sign and the parable of Lazarus.

Even if we take your argument, then the question would be what god?

Faith that relies on signs is one that can't last without nourishment. Many people claim to see "miracles" all the time.

We believe we consume the Living Body and Blood of Christ the Son of the One God and look at how we all behave or at least I do.

How many of us take that mystery to our condemnation? I don't think flashy miracles would do much in the long run.

People die of x and we swear we will change our lives. And week later (hours) back to business as normal.

Faith that leads to change which leads to greater faith is truly a wonder.

Faith that expects change to happen on our terms or wait to be convinced is mere paganism. Our God is often a God that is absent. There are no promises. Crosses till the end. The funny thing is whether we take up our Crosses or not, they are still there. If we are honest, or if I am, I just want them taken away.

I don't want to suffer with my God who suffered for me. I want health, wealth, and happiness. I keep trying to make the Gospels tell me that is the good news, but I just can't find it.

So if your arm is restored, it is so you can use it to glorify God by serving others and suffering with them. Not to work on your back hand at the tennis club.

Tennis ain't my game, but you get my point I think.

Again, the general you here, just playing off your post.





why would wanting health,wealth and happiness be wrong?why would being happy be wrong?if that is so at what good does happiness exist?

It ain't wrong. Just ain't Christian.

Well, let's say it ain't the Gospel. Actually, it is VERY Christian, unfortunately.

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« Reply #22 on: November 05, 2011, 11:09:41 AM »

atheist apologetics on oc.net...why?

Why not? You can't stand up to what GiC's OP? Frankly it is weak sauce for GiC and should not even give a Christian a bother.

He is right.

Now some of the responses from the other posters are a bit embarrassing.
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« Reply #23 on: November 05, 2011, 11:20:20 AM »

If God hasn't met your expectations, then lower your expectations.  Grin

I don`t agree, God is perfect, splendid, beautifull, excellent, great, magnific.
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« Reply #24 on: November 05, 2011, 11:21:10 AM »

If God hasn't met your expectations, then lower your expectations.  Grin

I don`t agree, God is perfect, splendid, beautifull, excellent, great, magnific.
Sure, God is all those things. Are your expectations of God equally 'perfect'? Wink
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« Reply #25 on: November 05, 2011, 12:10:42 PM »

If God hasn't met your expectations, then lower your expectations.  Grin

I don`t agree, God is perfect, splendid, beautifull, excellent, great, magnific.
Sure, God is all those things. Are your expectations of God equally 'perfect'? Wink

I expect God to be beyond my expectations.
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« Reply #26 on: November 05, 2011, 12:20:19 PM »

If God hasn't met your expectations, then lower your expectations.  Grin

I don`t agree, God is perfect, splendid, beautifull, excellent, great, magnific.
Sure, God is all those things. Are your expectations of God equally 'perfect'? Wink

I expect God to be beyond my expectations.

Dude, you should be so unshaned of yourself. //:=)
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« Reply #27 on: November 05, 2011, 12:25:59 PM »

I know my answer to "why can't you find God under a microscope (or with a telescope, for that matter)" will be viewed as overly simplistic, but...

Scripture repeatedly demands faith from us. Apparently, this is very important to God (I understand this to do with the relationship between free will and love).

If God exists outside of time and is omniscient as the Church teaches, then He is in a position to foresee and circumvent our every attempt to prove His existence. He gets to erase His fingerprints, so to speak.  Non-proof becomes my proof. For once, I get to join the atheists in this.

For myself, I wish He would re-arrange the stars for once, but hey; He gets to make the rules...
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« Reply #28 on: November 05, 2011, 12:37:10 PM »

I know my answer to "why can't you find God under a microscope (or with a telescope, for that matter)" will be viewed as overly simplistic, but...

Scripture repeatedly demands faith from us. Apparently, this is very important to God (I understand this to do with the relationship between free will and love).

If God exists outside of time and is omniscient as the Church teaches, then He is in a position to foresee and circumvent our every attempt to prove His existence. He gets to erase His fingerprints, so to speak.  Non-proof becomes my proof. For once, I get to join the atheists in this.

For myself, I wish He would re-arrange the stars for once, but hey; He gets to make the rules...

People could easily find an explanation for arrange stars.. it could be attributed to extraterestrial beings/life and not necessary to God.As someone said what we really want is not seing the presence of God but feel it... There are many people who experience supernatural phenomenas but don`t attribute it to God.The real miracle is that within.A true miracle is the one that comes for a reason.A miracle without a message is not a true miracle.
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« Reply #29 on: November 05, 2011, 12:47:49 PM »

Well, I'm glad you all worked this out amongst yourselves. But I think you missed the point of the link referenced in the OP. The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence. Every time a 'miracle' takes place, it tends to be something just beyond what science can fully explain. No miracles like regrowing as a limb or the re-sequencing of already sequenced and verified DNA ever seem to happen, all so-called 'miracles' tend to happen beyond the frontiers of science. To an outside observer, it all just seems too convenient.

That's not true at all.. People have miraculous cures all the time that baffle Doctors.

There was just an event when a young man who was blind immediately  regained his sight as he venerated the Myrah Streaming Iveron Icon
( Hawaii ).

How do icons stream oil? I would be happy to give you details of what Ive seen. Icons stream fragrant Oil.. People get healed. Go figure

 
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« Reply #30 on: November 05, 2011, 12:59:44 PM »

atheist apologetics on oc.net...why?

Why not? You can't stand up to what GiC's OP? Frankly it is weak sauce for GiC and should not even give a Christian a bother.

He is right.

Now some of the responses from the other posters are a bit embarrassing.

Actually, more to the point with GiC, we long timers remember that he is an apostate who was graduated from Holy Cross with a Masters of Theology degree. That particular degree, as opposed to a M.Div. shows to some extent that he came to the Church originally from an intellectual vantage, though I could be wrong. We humor and or tolerate him to some extent but STILL consider him a brother - just off the Way.
He. along with another steady member here who often wavers in and out of belief, gives us an example of the dangers of approaching matters of faith from a pure intellect alone. While many begin their journey from that point of entry, most move on.
I've no problem reading these debates, but probably do not get involved directly as he has "no standing" to argue against our FAITH in support of his own FAITH.
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« Reply #31 on: November 05, 2011, 01:20:06 PM »

atheist apologetics on oc.net...why?

Why not? You can't stand up to what GiC's OP? Frankly it is weak sauce for GiC and should not even give a Christian a bother.

He is right.

Now some of the responses from the other posters are a bit embarrassing.

Actually, more to the point with GiC, we long timers remember that he is an apostate who was graduated from Holy Cross with a Masters of Theology degree. That particular degree, as opposed to a M.Div. shows to some extent that he came to the Church originally from an intellectual vantage, though I could be wrong. We humor and or tolerate him to some extent but STILL consider him a brother - just off the Way.
He. along with another steady member here who often wavers in and out of belief, gives us an example of the dangers of approaching matters of faith from a pure intellect alone. While many begin their journey from that point of entry, most move on.
I've no problem reading these debates, but probably do not get involved directly as he has "no standing" to argue against our FAITH in support of his own FAITH.

And again he is correct here in his OP. There is no arguing with it.

And he a great guy all around.

We should consider every human a "brother". And I would like to think we ought to do more than "humor" or "tolerate" others, even the apostates. Then again maybe my memory ain't working correctly and Christ said some something like: "A new commandment I give to you. To tolerate one another as I have tolerated you."

And your psychological speculation about his break from the Church and the conditions under which it happened I find a bit insulting, speculating about such matters in public seems a best patronizing at worst dehumanizing. Who knows, maybe you are ghost writing his memoirs and are privy to such info and he just that simplistic. In that case, I stand corrected. But I doubt GiC finds any insult, he rolls with the internetz. And GiC is capable of speaking for himself.

I don't know him well or at least not as well I wish, but I do know he has never been nothing but gracious and kind to me. And has provided much needed laugh therapy at times.



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« Reply #32 on: November 05, 2011, 01:29:01 PM »

Coming from a rather weird form of atheism, my own conversion came mostly from the experience that belief in God made me a happier person.  I know, that sounds strange, but that was the beginning.

I saw that people who wanted to get off of drugs and alcohol ended up in 12-step programs that healed them.  I met prisoners who were 'bad dudes' who converted and left their violent ways.  I also saw that 'whole' could be far more miserable than amputees.

My opinion is that it is overly simplistic to think that human beings could be happy in a perfect world.  I have seen great wealth and power bring misery.  I have also seen most of those who have sought for a spiritual connection to God somehow find happiness amidst asceticism, suffering and persecution.

All that I can say for sure is that a humble faith in Christ leads to inner peace, and that is what I am searching for.  You can say I am deluded, but I am a 'happy deluded' if you must think me deceived.  I'm also far less harmful than I once was.  When I did not believe, out of my fears of having to fend for myself I was far more reckless about the safety of others than I am now.

Sure, their are people who abuse religion.  There are also people who abuse atheism (c.f. 20th century European history).  It is within part of our present nature to use whatever cloak we can find to hide our embarrassing habits and temptations.

The introduction of atheism to the world stage, beginning with the French Revolution, is relatively new.  Societies world-wide have changed, but they were changing before then, too.  There is a trajectory that atheism does not have seemd to affect: people are still miserable and addicted, with or without atheism or religion.  That's because, in the end, the existence of either has no effect on the person until he decides to accept their premise.

Since the premise of atheism is that humans are as they are, and their is no help outside of human agency, I have so say that this is not my experience.  In my own case, self-will has not worked so well.  Perhaps this is not your experience, and that's fine because my happiness does not depend on your belief, and neither should yours depend on my agreement with you.

Getting back to the topic, God doesn't need to heal amputees to make them happy.  In fact, if He just went around and fixed eveything that broke, we'd break much more and take it all for granted.  Part of what makes this life special is that it is delicate and temporary.  The amputee reminds himself and those around him that the dangers of this world are real. There are real costs to our actions and our lives, and we must cherish what we have been given.

Or, he can sit around and pity himself and be miserable... with or without God.


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« Reply #33 on: November 05, 2011, 01:53:26 PM »

atheist apologetics on oc.net...why?

Why not? You can't stand up to what GiC's OP? Frankly it is weak sauce for GiC and should not even give a Christian a bother.

He is right.

Now some of the responses from the other posters are a bit embarrassing.

Actually, more to the point with GiC, we long timers remember that he is an apostate who was graduated from Holy Cross with a Masters of Theology degree. That particular degree, as opposed to a M.Div. shows to some extent that he came to the Church originally from an intellectual vantage, though I could be wrong. We humor and or tolerate him to some extent but STILL consider him a brother - just off the Way.
He. along with another steady member here who often wavers in and out of belief, gives us an example of the dangers of approaching matters of faith from a pure intellect alone. While many begin their journey from that point of entry, most move on.
I've no problem reading these debates, but probably do not get involved directly as he has "no standing" to argue against our FAITH in support of his own FAITH.

And again he is correct here in his OP. There is no arguing with it.

And he a great guy all around.

We should consider every human a "brother". And I would like to think we ought to do more than "humor" or "tolerate" others, even the apostates. Then again maybe my memory ain't working correctly and Christ said some something like: "A new commandment I give to you. To tolerate one another as I have tolerated you."

And your psychological speculation about his break from the Church and the conditions under which it happened I find a bit insulting, speculating about such matters in public seems a best patronizing at worst dehumanizing. Who knows, maybe you are ghost writing his memoirs and are privy to such info and he just that simplistic. In that case, I stand corrected. But I doubt GiC finds any insult, he rolls with the internetz. And GiC is capable of speaking for himself.

I don't know him well or at least not as well I wish, but I do know he has never been nothing but gracious and kind to me. And has provided much needed laugh therapy at times.





Chuckle, when I logged back in my screen did not show in its view who was so responding but I guessed it was you - same ilk as GiC. Glad you feel free to lecture me on what I "should" do. I'll leave you to your own psychological musings - judgmental as they themselves are  Roll Eyes.  GiC and I go "way back" and agree on most everything in secular economic and geo-political matters; we just differ as to faith, each placing ours differently. If he did not want responses such as mine he need not have begun the topic, or stayed here outright. Neither he nor I will lose any sleep over this.
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« Reply #34 on: November 05, 2011, 03:34:39 PM »

atheist apologetics on oc.net...why?

Why not? You can't stand up to what GiC's OP? Frankly it is weak sauce for GiC and should not even give a Christian a bother.

He is right.

Now some of the responses from the other posters are a bit embarrassing.

Actually, more to the point with GiC, we long timers remember that he is an apostate who was graduated from Holy Cross with a Masters of Theology degree. That particular degree, as opposed to a M.Div. shows to some extent that he came to the Church originally from an intellectual vantage, though I could be wrong. We humor and or tolerate him to some extent but STILL consider him a brother - just off the Way.
He. along with another steady member here who often wavers in and out of belief, gives us an example of the dangers of approaching matters of faith from a pure intellect alone. While many begin their journey from that point of entry, most move on.
I've no problem reading these debates, but probably do not get involved directly as he has "no standing" to argue against our FAITH in support of his own FAITH.

And again he is correct here in his OP. There is no arguing with it.

And he a great guy all around.

We should consider every human a "brother". And I would like to think we ought to do more than "humor" or "tolerate" others, even the apostates. Then again maybe my memory ain't working correctly and Christ said some something like: "A new commandment I give to you. To tolerate one another as I have tolerated you."

And your psychological speculation about his break from the Church and the conditions under which it happened I find a bit insulting, speculating about such matters in public seems a best patronizing at worst dehumanizing. Who knows, maybe you are ghost writing his memoirs and are privy to such info and he just that simplistic. In that case, I stand corrected. But I doubt GiC finds any insult, he rolls with the internetz. And GiC is capable of speaking for himself.

I don't know him well or at least not as well I wish, but I do know he has never been nothing but gracious and kind to me. And has provided much needed laugh therapy at times.





Chuckle, when I logged back in my screen did not show in its view who was so responding but I guessed it was you - same ilk as GiC. Glad you feel free to lecture me on what I "should" do. I'll leave you to your own psychological musings - judgmental as they themselves are  Roll Eyes.  GiC and I go "way back" and agree on most everything in secular economic and geo-political matters; we just differ as to faith, each placing ours differently. If he did not want responses such as mine he need not have begun the topic, or stayed here outright. Neither he nor I will lose any sleep over this.

Glad to see you have mastered the kindergarten manner of argument: So are you!

Didn't say he would lose any sleep over it.

And I am always glad to properly correct someone.

You're welcome.
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« Reply #35 on: November 05, 2011, 03:52:23 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus CHrist!

Well, I'm glad you all worked this out amongst yourselves. But I think you missed the point of the link referenced in the OP. The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence. Every time a 'miracle' takes place, it tends to be something just beyond what science can fully explain. No miracles like regrowing as a limb or the re-sequencing of already sequenced and verified DNA ever seem to happen, all so-called 'miracles' tend to happen beyond the frontiers of science. To an outside observer, it all just seems too convenient.

That is a subjective opinion.  The Apostles and the Prophets have affirmed that God reveals Himself through the Mystery of Creation.  For we Christians, everything we learn from Biology or Mechanics are only more glorification to the Almighty.  We are less concerned with miracles or divine intervention so much as communion and relationship.  We learn to know God like we know each other, by a relationship in connection with each others actions.  God's actions are to have created and to perpetually sustain every aspect and detail of our realitieis each succeeding nano-second of existence.  So whenever we know our reality at any level, we are expanding our experience with God who creates our respective realities.  Further, Christianity is a Mystery religion where Communion with God is obtainable in a spiritual way. We can't exactly verify this to outsiders, and yet there are literally over a BILLION people who profess Faith and an experience of God in the Catholic Church alone, how is that not evidence? Just because a few bitter scientists are not feeling it, doesn't mean they should be so quickly dismissive, and the reality is most scientists are not vitriolic atheists because they reasonably agree that if science can not make a verifiable conclusion regarding God, then science should make any conclusions about whether or not God does or does not exist.  Atheists who use science to support their claims are not really very scientific then are they, in making drastic assumptions which they admittedly can never themselves verify in any way?

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.

No you can't, to this day there is not solid explanations for the several gaping holes in the current theories, especially in regards to dark energy. There are delightfully eloquent and indeed believable theories and assumptions, but all of these are not unified to this day, and the several layers of understanding to not merge mutually, you call that an explanation? Sounds like a confused one to me Wink

 GiC, what is honestly objective or verifiable? Every human measurement is subjective, so you measure a distance to be 3280 feet, but somebody else calls that a kilometer.  The deep revelations about string theory, black holes, and dark matter are all dependent upon suppositions, elaborate mathematics, and astonishing technology, but really, how much of that is objective? Its all subjective to the base assumptions, to the math, to the technology.  Further, its all really worthless unless, as Einstein himself liked to say, "It should be possible to explain the laws of physics to a barmaid."  Barmaids aren't often well versed in complex equations or satellite telescopes..

stay blessed,
habte selassie

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« Reply #36 on: November 05, 2011, 07:31:48 PM »



atheist apologetics on oc.net...why?

Why not? You can't stand up to what GiC's OP? Frankly it is weak sauce for GiC and should not even give a Christian a bother.

He is right.

Now some of the responses from the other posters are a bit embarrassing.

Actually, more to the point with GiC, we long timers remember that he is an apostate who was graduated from Holy Cross with a Masters of Theology degree. That particular degree, as opposed to a M.Div. shows to some extent that he came to the Church originally from an intellectual vantage, though I could be wrong. We humor and or tolerate him to some extent but STILL consider him a brother - just off the Way.
He. along with another steady member here who often wavers in and out of belief, gives us an example of the dangers of approaching matters of faith from a pure intellect alone. While many begin their journey from that point of entry, most move on.
I've no problem reading these debates, but probably do not get involved directly as he has "no standing" to argue against our FAITH in support of his own FAITH.

And again he is correct here in his OP. There is no arguing with it.

And he a great guy all around.

We should consider every human a "brother". And I would like to think we ought to do more than "humor" or "tolerate" others, even the apostates. Then again maybe my memory ain't working correctly and Christ said some something like: "A new commandment I give to you. To tolerate one another as I have tolerated you."

And your psychological speculation about his break from the Church and the conditions under which it happened I find a bit insulting, speculating about such matters in public seems a best patronizing at worst dehumanizing. Who knows, maybe you are ghost writing his memoirs and are privy to such info and he just that simplistic. In that case, I stand corrected. But I doubt GiC finds any insult, he rolls with the internetz. And GiC is capable of speaking for himself.

I don't know him well or at least not as well I wish, but I do know he has never been nothing but gracious and kind to me. And has provided much needed laugh therapy at times.





Chuckle, when I logged back in my screen did not show in its view who was so responding but I guessed it was you - same ilk as GiC. Glad you feel free to lecture me on what I "should" do. I'll leave you to your own psychological musings - judgmental as they themselves are  Roll Eyes.  GiC and I go "way back" and agree on most everything in secular economic and geo-political matters; we just differ as to faith, each placing ours differently. If he did not want responses such as mine he need not have begun the topic, or stayed here outright. Neither he nor I will lose any sleep over this.

Glad to see you have mastered the kindergarten manner of argument: So are you!

Didn't say he would lose any sleep over it.

And I am always glad to properly correct someone.

You're welcome.

Who thanked you? Certainly not I.
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« Reply #37 on: November 06, 2011, 12:10:32 AM »

I always liked Frederick Buechner's perspective:
-snip-
Shortened this for the sake of scrolling through this again, but truly a wonderful perspective.

Who needs an objective proof of God's existence when living out one's faith hardens it like a rock? I dunno, as soon as I stopped living life as a pseudo-intellectual philosopher and instead started to live as a Christian, my faith became that much more real, immediate and true to me. Of course the intellectual side needs to be fed, which I think Christianity does wonderfully, but I feel there is a limit to that sort of intellectual assent. Just taking up your cross daily, like orthonorm said, kind of answers all the questions I have, but it's the accepting of the cross which remains difficult for me.

Anyway enough of this babbling, God doesn't need to give us any proof of his existence. If He did, I'm sure it wouldn't satiate even the most hardened atheist, well maybe if you put God on trial. I think we may even demand more of God and at the same time being aware of God's existence with having such a proof may actually put a hindrance to us with our relationship with him.

BTW I personally have a hard time distinguishing miracle from a non-miracle.
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« Reply #38 on: November 06, 2011, 01:31:32 AM »

Well, I'm glad you all worked this out amongst yourselves. But I think you missed the point of the link referenced in the OP. The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence. Every time a 'miracle' takes place, it tends to be something just beyond what science can fully explain. No miracles like regrowing as a limb or the re-sequencing of already sequenced and verified DNA ever seem to happen, all so-called 'miracles' tend to happen beyond the frontiers of science. To an outside observer, it all just seems too convenient.

Never do people consider that an amputee could be fine in God's eyes.  We assume that an amputee is in need of healing.   There is a bagger at my local Kroger store who has downs syndrome.   As I sit here typing I'm reflecting back all through my life on every person I know, and I'll tell you that this guy is literally the happiest, most positive, and delightful person I've ever been around.  He says "Hi" with a great big smile, sacks groceries with enthusiasm, pauses briefly at the snacks (LOL!!), and is very happy to help you load your car and thanks me at least 10 times, shakes my hand, and tells me what he is saving for when I give him a $1 tip. 

Exodus 4:11 - The LORD said to him, "Who gave man his mouth? Who makes him deaf or mute? Who gives him sight or makes him blind? Is it not I, the LORD?

I look around and everybody pities him, but their faces are sad, stress lines on their cheeks, and worn out from their stress filled workday.  This individual is smiling and happy the entire time, delighted in his job, and happy about life.

Do you believe God should heal him?

We don't always understand disabilities, but sometimes if we reflect on ourselves, perhaps we are in need of greater healing more so than those that we pity.

---

As for Science, it does not often credit itself with "unexplainable" things.   It will ignore testimony of countless people who have witnessed angels and miracles through millenia.  This includes massive amounts of miracles that happen within the Eastern Orthodox church, a few of which I have personally witnessed.
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« Reply #39 on: November 06, 2011, 06:48:46 PM »

When a Scientist took oil from the Myrah streaming Iveron Icon and analyzed it in his lab in had several properties that were chemically impossible that he could not explain and several ingredients so rare they are nearly impossible to gather and at least one ingredient that he absolutely could not identify..

On this last visit a blind boy immediately regained his sight while venerating the  Icon. There was a Chruch full of witnesses who know the boy very well and know of his disability.

Go figure
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« Reply #40 on: November 07, 2011, 11:18:57 AM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.


Really? You can? I'd love to see you do that. Even Richard Dawkins says that science is still working on the problem of how something came to be from nothing. Of course, I imagine that you're much brighter than Richard Dawkins (and I'm not kidding you about that, nor am I flattering you.)

Selam

Interesting question, I'm not sure I accept the concept, or existence, of this 'nothing' you speak of. If you're merely referencing the Null Set, then I think I know where to go from there, but if you mean something else, you'll have to be more specific.

Of course, I find it interesting that you immediately jump onto Achronos' band wagon of trying to turn the initial question around to force me to prove a negative. As though anything one makes up is true if it cannot be proven false. By that logic, your god exists with the same likelihood that the tooth fairy, Easter bunny, and flying spaghetti monster exist.


But the universe does exist. And if it exists, then there must be a reason that it exists. You claim to know the reason for its existence, i.e. you stated that you can "explain the universe without a deity." Perhaps you over-stated the matter? If so, fine. But that's quite a claim to make, that you can "explain the universe without a deity." In fact, objective atheistic scientists will not even make the claim that they can "explain the universe." After all, it's a vast universe, and we are only a minute, infinitesimal part of it.


Selam

Glad to see you finally edging toward the dark (Thomist) side.
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« Reply #41 on: November 07, 2011, 11:18:58 AM »

In answer to the original question, read C.S. Lewis work, "The Problem of Pain".
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« Reply #42 on: November 07, 2011, 11:18:58 AM »

There is a case of an withered optic nerve being immediately healed in Lourdes France.
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« Reply #43 on: November 07, 2011, 01:54:08 PM »

I know that this is really lousy reasoning, but if a mountain disappeared in Japan and appeared in Kentucky, or if limbs appeared on amputees everywhere, or whole countries spontaneously combusted in seconds, I feel like it would be a lot easier to believe in God.

Well, either Him or aliens. Still, the playing field is decreased.

That's what I think, anyway.

Really? Christ raised a man from death. And the reaction of more than a few people was then to plan to kill Him.

That is the interesting tie between that sign and the parable of Lazarus.

Even if we take your argument, then the question would be what god?

Faith that relies on signs is one that can't last without nourishment. Many people claim to see "miracles" all the time.

We believe we consume the Living Body and Blood of Christ the Son of the One God and look at how we all behave or at least I do.

How many of us take that mystery to our condemnation? I don't think flashy miracles would do much in the long run.

People die of x and we swear we will change our lives. And week later (hours) back to business as normal.

Faith that leads to change which leads to greater faith is truly a wonder.

Faith that expects change to happen on our terms or wait to be convinced is mere paganism. Our God is often a God that is absent. There are no promises. Crosses till the end. The funny thing is whether we take up our Crosses or not, they are still there. If we are honest, or if I am, I just want them taken away.

I don't want to suffer with my God who suffered for me. I want health, wealth, and happiness. I keep trying to make the Gospels tell me that is the good news, but I just can't find it.

So if your arm is restored, it is so you can use it to glorify God by serving others and suffering with them. Not to work on your back hand at the tennis club.

Tennis ain't my game, but you get my point I think.

Again, the general you here, just playing off your post.





why would wanting health,wealth and happiness be wrong?why would being happy be wrong?if that is so at what good does happiness exist?

It ain't wrong. Just ain't Christian.

Well, let's say it ain't the Gospel. Actually, it is VERY Christian, unfortunately.



lol Cheesy ... I don`t get it . Tongue first you say that it ain`t wrong and it ain`t christian that you say that if very christian unfortunately... eighter is christian or not... eighter is not wrong or eighter is unfortunately.
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« Reply #44 on: November 09, 2011, 12:20:04 PM »

There is a case of an withered optic nerve being immediately healed in Lourdes France.

The advantage for GIC in the case I mentioned of the blind boy getting sight back immediately while venerating the Icon is that it just happened, it was in PA with lots of witnesses and we also have the testimony of Reader Nectarios the Icons care-taker. GIC can investigate this one more easily. He could go there even, look into it and maybe get his faith back. He could go to Hawaii and see the Icon and talk to reader Nectarios or wait till Feb. when he comes back.

I have been around this icon several times for long periods. I have seen a small grey cloud hover just above it and then smelled the strong fragrance of roses and seen with my own eyes drops of oil form and then trickle down. Most people , due to the crush of the crowds have not had the same opportunity to have as much time to see exactly what happens as it happens.

And there are dozens of other healings associated with this icon. A tumor the size of a baseball disappears the very next day when surgery was performed. All they found was a lump of fat, yet all the diagnostics clearly showed a tumor before that... For one example.

So this is not "Just beyond the reach of scientific investigation" ( paraphrase) as GIC thinks. Proof for the most hardened heart is available for the asking.
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« Reply #45 on: November 09, 2011, 04:27:52 PM »

There is a case of an withered optic nerve being immediately healed in Lourdes France.

The advantage for GIC in the case I mentioned of the blind boy getting sight back immediately while venerating the Icon is that it just happened, it was in PA with lots of witnesses and we also have the testimony of Reader Nectarios the Icons care-taker. GIC can investigate this one more easily. He could go there even, look into it and maybe get his faith back. He could go to Hawaii and see the Icon and talk to reader Nectarios or wait till Feb. when he comes back.

I have been around this icon several times for long periods. I have seen a small grey cloud hover just above it and then smelled the strong fragrance of roses and seen with my own eyes drops of oil form and then trickle down. Most people , due to the crush of the crowds have not had the same opportunity to have as much time to see exactly what happens as it happens.

And there are dozens of other healings associated with this icon. A tumor the size of a baseball disappears the very next day when surgery was performed. All they found was a lump of fat, yet all the diagnostics clearly showed a tumor before that... For one example.

So this is not "Just beyond the reach of scientific investigation" ( paraphrase) as GIC thinks. Proof for the most hardened heart is available for the asking.
Well stated. Though  I would add, that the case of the healed optic nerve that had previously been withered was also investigated as well, and was an immediate healing.
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« Reply #46 on: November 17, 2011, 12:37:03 AM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.
phlogiston and aether in an heliocentric universe.
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« Reply #47 on: November 17, 2011, 10:22:42 AM »

Why would God heal an amputee? Does the infinitesimal amount of time on this earth and in this life really have any significance in comparison to the endless expanse of eternity? I'm in a wheelchair, but I don't lose any sleep over it.
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« Reply #48 on: November 22, 2011, 04:36:14 PM »

I think this thread is proof enough how the philosopher is naturally derided by his contemporaries.  It's happened many times in history..

People who think for themselves are never received well by the "religious right" so to speak.  Even though this is a "Religious Topics" area, please feel free to disagree with each other but no one has to be snarky about it.  Wink
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« Reply #49 on: January 18, 2012, 09:44:17 PM »

Okay, can you "there's imperical proof of miracles and God's existence" people splain to me why Christ condemns those who seek signs? I always thought that it had to do with freedom and sincerity and that God would not enslave people to faith in Him through an unquestionable miracle.
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« Reply #50 on: January 18, 2012, 09:53:37 PM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.


Really? You can? I'd love to see you do that. Even Richard Dawkins says that science is still working on the problem of how something came to be from nothing. Of course, I imagine that you're much brighter than Richard Dawkins (and I'm not kidding you about that, nor am I flattering you.)




Selam

That question is an easy one. The Universe was not created, because it always has existed, does exist, and always WILL exist. it might not be as we know it, but it always has and will exist.
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« Reply #51 on: January 18, 2012, 11:39:06 PM »

I tend to avoid this, but im going to expand in a new post what i meant.

This idea of the universe being made from nothing, just does not make sense. If the universe was created at a specific point in time, then what was before? pretime? just doesnt make any sense.


It is like the concept of preheating. you cant preheat, because it was already heating when you started it, and it was even heating(at room temperature) before you even started the oven.

And God, God, by that same logic that says there was a beginning of the universe, must also have a beginning.
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« Reply #52 on: January 18, 2012, 11:55:16 PM »

That question is an easy one. The Universe was not created, because it always has existed, does exist, and always WILL exist. it might not be as we know it, but it always has and will exist.

This is your own position? Is creation ex nihilo a scholastic accretion or something?

Quote
And God, God, by that same logic that says there was a beginning of the universe, must also have a beginning.

Are you serious?
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« Reply #53 on: January 19, 2012, 12:04:15 AM »

Logic doesn't really solve the problem... whether you say the universe was created or always existent, there is still a bit of a mystery about the how/why/etc.
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« Reply #54 on: January 19, 2012, 02:44:15 PM »

Logic doesn't really solve the problem... whether you say the universe was created or always existent, there is still a bit of a mystery about the how/why/etc.

There still is a lot of questions about the mechanics of the universe from the Planck epoch and earlier...though speaking about concepts like 'always', or anything related to the concept of time, seems kinda strange since 'time' didn't exist, at least certainly not as we currently understand the universe's fourth dimension; trying to talk about 'time' before the big bang is a fallacious attempt to impose our current experience on a system where that experience simply isn't valid.
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« Reply #55 on: January 19, 2012, 03:49:07 PM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.

ROFLOL.  Physicists and philosophers worldwide can now breathe a sigh of relief.

Pray tell, before the Big Bang (or Great Expansion or inflation or whatever you preferred term is), was there something or nothing?  I'm asking because physicists have been arguing about this for a very long time.  I anxiously await your response (oh, and please include some sort of empirical evidence).

At least it's nice to know someone like you has taken such an interest in Monsignor Lemaitre's work!
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« Reply #56 on: January 19, 2012, 04:03:14 PM »

Logic doesn't really solve the problem... whether you say the universe was created or always existent, there is still a bit of a mystery about the how/why/etc.

There still is a lot of questions about the mechanics of the universe from the Planck epoch and earlier...though speaking about concepts like 'always', or anything related to the concept of time, seems kinda strange since 'time' didn't exist, at least certainly not as we currently understand the universe's fourth dimension; trying to talk about 'time' before the big bang is a fallacious attempt to impose our current experience on a system where that experience simply isn't valid.

There are a lot of questions about the *origins* of the universe, how it is the way it is, why it is the way it is and what will become of it.  These aren't questions about "mechanics."  These are fundamental questions about what the "universe" is. 

I have to laugh at you guys, I really do.  I have a brother-in-law just like you, doctorate in mathematics and everything.  The guy thinks he knows *everything.*  For as much as he knows, he sure lives in a crummy neighborhood.  You'd think he'd take the five minutes it takes him to explain absolutely anything and use it to write a paper for Nature or Journal of Applied Physics and get some kind of prize. 
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« Reply #57 on: January 19, 2012, 04:03:55 PM »

God will heal amputees and has healed amputees in the past.   Sooo....?

There are many people with different ailments and disabilities who God does not miraculously heal for one reason or another, but that does not mean that God cannot heal them, nor does this prove that God has not healed other people with the same ailments and disabilities.  As to why God heals some and not others, that is a mystery, and if we knew exactly how and why God does what He does, we would be greater and more superior than God.  God does not have to "perform" according to the expectations of  skeptical and unbelieving scientists in order for God to prove His existence, nor is proving His existence dependent upon figuring out exactly how and why God does what he does.  It is indeed possible to know God, but impossible to figure Him out.  
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« Reply #58 on: January 19, 2012, 04:10:25 PM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.
Scientists also could explain that DNA didn't carry heredity, and scientists could also explain how the sun orbited the Earth, also a certian German-Jew of some importance explained the static universe.


Explaining something doesn't make you necessarily right.

Imagine what we think we know, will be proven wrong in 50 years.

PP
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« Reply #59 on: January 19, 2012, 07:35:56 PM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.

ROFLOL.  Physicists and philosophers worldwide can now breathe a sigh of relief.

Pray tell, before the Big Bang (or Great Expansion or inflation or whatever you preferred term is), was there something or nothing?  I'm asking because physicists have been arguing about this for a very long time.  I anxiously await your response (oh, and please include some sort of empirical evidence).

At least it's nice to know someone like you has taken such an interest in Monsignor Lemaitre's work!

Would you please define 'before' since I really am not clear what you mean by it in this context. 'Before' and 'after' are concepts tied to our current experience with time, I'm not sure what it means in a system where time doesn't exist.

Logic doesn't really solve the problem... whether you say the universe was created or always existent, there is still a bit of a mystery about the how/why/etc.

There still is a lot of questions about the mechanics of the universe from the Planck epoch and earlier...though speaking about concepts like 'always', or anything related to the concept of time, seems kinda strange since 'time' didn't exist, at least certainly not as we currently understand the universe's fourth dimension; trying to talk about 'time' before the big bang is a fallacious attempt to impose our current experience on a system where that experience simply isn't valid.

There are a lot of questions about the *origins* of the universe, how it is the way it is, why it is the way it is and what will become of it.  These aren't questions about "mechanics."  These are fundamental questions about what the "universe" is. 

Seem like issues of mechanics to me, the big questions about the big bang are things like the relationship between gravity and the other forces and how did matter behave before the separation of these forces at the end of the Plank epoch.

Quote
I have to laugh at you guys, I really do.  I have a brother-in-law just like you, doctorate in mathematics and everything.  The guy thinks he knows *everything.*  For as much as he knows, he sure lives in a crummy neighborhood.  You'd think he'd take the five minutes it takes him to explain absolutely anything and use it to write a paper for Nature or Journal of Applied Physics and get some kind of prize. 

Most of this stuff was published almost a century ago...you're not going to score any points in the academic community for republishing a paper from the 20's. Now if one can figure out the relationship between quantum gravity and quantum mechanics there's probably a Nobel prize in it.
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« Reply #60 on: January 19, 2012, 07:36:38 PM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.
Scientists also could explain that DNA didn't carry heredity, and scientists could also explain how the sun orbited the Earth, also a certian German-Jew of some importance explained the static universe.


Explaining something doesn't make you necessarily right.

Imagine what we think we know, will be proven wrong in 50 years.

PP

But it does allow you to start the process of removing unnecessary complexity from your model.
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« Reply #61 on: January 19, 2012, 11:33:36 PM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.

No you can't, except committing the logical fallacy that something inferior should create something superior. I know you believe that, but it's insane. A bit like a thousand monkeys engineering a human, or something.
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« Reply #62 on: January 19, 2012, 11:37:00 PM »

As for God healing amputees, ask the question why they lost their limb in the first place. Couldn't God have prevented it?

Or for any other person that is injured or killed.

But we believe God's judgements are just.
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« Reply #63 on: January 19, 2012, 11:39:21 PM »

Okay, can you "there's imperical proof of miracles and God's existence" people splain to me why Christ condemns those who seek signs? I always thought that it had to do with freedom and sincerity and that God would not enslave people to faith in Him through an unquestionable miracle.
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« Reply #64 on: January 19, 2012, 11:40:24 PM »

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« Reply #65 on: January 20, 2012, 01:51:05 PM »

The real issue is that this 'god' seems to avoid leaving any objective and verifiable proof of his or her existence.
You can't prove God exists.

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.

No you can't, except committing the logical fallacy that something inferior should create something superior. I know you believe that, but it's insane. A bit like a thousand monkeys engineering a human, or something.

How is improvement and advancement a fallacy? It would seem that this mistaken belief that you can only create something that is less than yourself is the true fallacy. For example, though I could never solve the Halting Problem personally, my brain simply does not posses the computational ability to do so, I do know, at least in theory, how a computer to solve the problem could be constructed, though we currently lack the required technology (I would need a black hole, for one). And I can fully describe the properties, mechanics, and theoretical foundation for this computer that could solve problems that are theoretically beyond my brain's capabilities; unlike the difference between a monkey's brain and a human brain, which, while not equally capable, are of the same computational class.

And that's just addressing the ability of computational systems to design more capable computational systems, the ability to evolve them is even more powerful because it doesn't require an 'understanding' of the theory or mechanics of the a more capable computational system, it merely requires a means to test and exclude potential but inadequate candidates. I don't know how anyone with even the most rudimentary understanding of genetics, evolutionary systems, and computation would be surprised in the slightest by the results of biological evolution.
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« Reply #66 on: January 20, 2012, 02:27:15 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Logic doesn't really solve the problem... whether you say the universe was created or always existent, there is still a bit of a mystery about the how/why/etc.

There still is a lot of questions about the mechanics of the universe from the Planck epoch and earlier...though speaking about concepts like 'always', or anything related to the concept of time, seems kinda strange since 'time' didn't exist, at least certainly not as we currently understand the universe's fourth dimension; trying to talk about 'time' before the big bang is a fallacious attempt to impose our current experience on a system where that experience simply isn't valid.

So is trying to explain or compute such Cosmological events as well Wink  At least in Orthodox we are content to simply explain what we can never understand or experience as being a Mystery.  Science is the brain gone wild, trying to measure everything, whereas somethings are immeasurable, beyond theory and speculation.  The Eastern Orthodox explain that the Godhead is unknowable because human beings are finite and limited, and therefore physically and mechanically impossible to comprehend or experience the Infinity of God. In regards to the Universe, such is the same.  We don't know anything but what is revealed by Grace.  Science is a wonderful tool when it deals with what is tangible, accessible, pragmatic, but when it delves into the realms of philosophy and metaphysics, folks are simply and literally over their heads.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #67 on: January 20, 2012, 02:39:36 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Logic doesn't really solve the problem... whether you say the universe was created or always existent, there is still a bit of a mystery about the how/why/etc.

There still is a lot of questions about the mechanics of the universe from the Planck epoch and earlier...though speaking about concepts like 'always', or anything related to the concept of time, seems kinda strange since 'time' didn't exist, at least certainly not as we currently understand the universe's fourth dimension; trying to talk about 'time' before the big bang is a fallacious attempt to impose our current experience on a system where that experience simply isn't valid.

So is trying to explain or compute such Cosmological events as well Wink  At least in Orthodox we are content to simply explain what we can never understand or experience as being a Mystery.  Science is the brain gone wild, trying to measure everything, whereas somethings are immeasurable, beyond theory and speculation.  The Eastern Orthodox explain that the Godhead is unknowable because human beings are finite and limited, and therefore physically and mechanically impossible to comprehend or experience the Infinity of God. In regards to the Universe, such is the same.  We don't know anything but what is revealed by Grace.  Science is a wonderful tool when it deals with what is tangible, accessible, pragmatic, but when it delves into the realms of philosophy and metaphysics, folks are simply and literally over their heads.

stay blessed,
habte selassie

The fact that we don't know something does not automatically imply that it is unknowable. Wink We can and will gain a greater understanding of the big bang over time, that's the entire point of projects like the LHC at CERN, to recreate the conditions surrounding the big bang so we can study them...the LHC isn't quite getting us back to the Plank epoch but that will be the next step. Also, I don't think that simply because a dimensionless universe is outside our current experience that we are unable to understand it, yes time is central to our experience from day to day but if we weren't capable of stepping back and looking at problems in a manner more general than our common experience would allow we wouldn't have the level of development in mathematics and physics that we enjoy today.

That's one of the great things that separates science from religion, when we don't know something in science we don't throw our hands in the air and resolve ourselves to ignorance saying it's unknowable, we study it, develop hypotheses, test hypotheses, create models, and eventually learn how it works. As long as gods continue to live in the realm of the unknown on the edges of science their dominion will continue to shrink, day after day, as it has for the past few centuries.
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« Reply #68 on: January 20, 2012, 02:53:05 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


The fact that we don't know something does not automatically imply that it is unknowable. Wink We can and will gain a greater understanding of the big bang over time, that's the entire point of projects like the LHC at CERN, to recreate the conditions surrounding the big bang so we can study them...the LHC isn't quite getting us back to the Plank epoch but that will be the next step. Also, I don't think that simply because a dimensionless universe is outside our current experience that we are unable to understand it, yes time is central to our experience from day to day but if we weren't capable of stepping back and looking at problems in a manner more general than our common experience would allow we wouldn't have the level of development in mathematics and physics that we enjoy today.

That's one of the great things that separates science from religion, when we don't know something in science we don't throw our hands in the air and resolve ourselves to ignorance saying it's unknowable, we study it, develop hypotheses, test hypotheses, create models, and eventually learn how it works. As long as gods continue to live in the realm of the unknown on the edges of science their dominion will continue to shrink, day after day, as it has for the past few centuries.

No what separates science from religion is science is never content to admit its own limitations, where as religion humbly throws her hands up, but not in hopeless or stupidity, rather the opposite, rather that God or circumstance reveal the truth.

What exactly is CERN recreating? What exactly do speculative computer models and calculations prove exactly? All these are anthropomorphic, the computer is a human creation, it computes what we imagine, not necessarily what actually happened.  Further, the Big Bang is a delightful mathematical computation to speculate the POSSIBLE conditions of the early Universe, but logically our models do not always work, because we were not there to create models of the reality of those events, we are delving into pure speculation and assumption.  
Again, Science is a wonderful tool when it deals with what is tangible, accessible, pragmatic, but when it delves into the realms of philosophy and metaphysics, folks are simply and literally over their heads.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #69 on: January 20, 2012, 04:36:46 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


The fact that we don't know something does not automatically imply that it is unknowable. Wink We can and will gain a greater understanding of the big bang over time, that's the entire point of projects like the LHC at CERN, to recreate the conditions surrounding the big bang so we can study them...the LHC isn't quite getting us back to the Plank epoch but that will be the next step. Also, I don't think that simply because a dimensionless universe is outside our current experience that we are unable to understand it, yes time is central to our experience from day to day but if we weren't capable of stepping back and looking at problems in a manner more general than our common experience would allow we wouldn't have the level of development in mathematics and physics that we enjoy today.

That's one of the great things that separates science from religion, when we don't know something in science we don't throw our hands in the air and resolve ourselves to ignorance saying it's unknowable, we study it, develop hypotheses, test hypotheses, create models, and eventually learn how it works. As long as gods continue to live in the realm of the unknown on the edges of science their dominion will continue to shrink, day after day, as it has for the past few centuries.

No what separates science from religion is science is never content to admit its own limitations, where as religion humbly throws her hands up, but not in hopeless or stupidity, rather the opposite, rather that God or circumstance reveal the truth.

I have seen no evidence that such limitations even exist; 'limitations' are usually nothing more than a lack of imagination.

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What exactly is CERN recreating? What exactly do speculative computer models and calculations prove exactly?

CERN has a lot of on-going projects related to nuclear physics, the most important of which is probably the LHC which is colliding Hadrons (as the name implies) at energy levels comparable to those calculated to have existed at the time of the big bang...just at a much smaller scale. There's a lot more to it than speculative computer models and calculations, those were done years ago by theoretical physicists, the LHC is where experimental physicists are testing various hypotheses theoretical physicists have devised over the past few decades...things like string theory are fun and all and they seem to give us a nice neat model, but they're also meaningless until experimental data verifies their validity.

Currently the big project is proving the existence of the Higgs Boson, they've proved the null hypothesis that it exists to three standard deviations but current standards require it be proven to five; so I doubt the main focus will change until that is accomplished. Ultimately, (and the Higgs Boson is just the first step) they want to further explore the forces and interactions that affect elementary particles with the holy grail being the unification of quantum mechanics and general relativity in a theory of quantum gravity. This will help us to begin to understand the laws of physics (and, accordingly, the nature of the universe) as they existed during the Plank epoch...that brief period of time after the big bang but before the laws of physics as we know them today became valid (because the four fundamental forces had not yet separated).

Particle physics may not be the easiest subject in the world to understand and I know that the level of statistical analysis required in this field puts it outside the reach of many people's understanding, but it's hardly magic, it follows scientific processes to perform and validate experiments and arrive at objective conclusions.

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All these are anthropomorphic, the computer is a human creation, it computes what we imagine, not necessarily what actually happened.

In the context of particle physics, they're generally just used to perform the statistical analysis required to acquire the required level of certainty about experiments. If you have a concern it should be with the mathematics, not the computers that just crunch the numbers. Also, I don't think it's accurate to say that a computer is anthropomorphic, rather their computational class is limited by the exact same things that limit the computational class of human brains, namely the conditions imposed by the laws of physics. We can devise far more powerful computational classes on paper, the laws of physics as we currently understand them just make building them out of our reach.

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Further, the Big Bang is a delightful mathematical computation to speculate the POSSIBLE conditions of the early Universe, but logically our models do not always work, because we were not there to create models of the reality of those events, we are delving into pure speculation and assumption.

But we can see the effects of the big bang, namely the universe itself. We can see how particles react to each other and we can reconstruct other particles that don't exist today or at least don't exist in quantities and locations that we can detect them. It's not a field of pure speculation and assumption, but a very rigorous field dominated by hard working scientists who have carefully and rationally observed the universe to develop falsifiable hypotheses and then tested those hypotheses using the most exacting scientific standards.

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Again, Science is a wonderful tool when it deals with what is tangible, accessible, pragmatic, but when it delves into the realms of philosophy and metaphysics, folks are simply and literally over their heads.

If want to dismiss something as being anthropomorphic, then philosophy and metaphysics are the fields you should be targeting. They have relied on human experience and human prejudice to a point that is almost embarrassing. In fact, I would argue that they are largely nothing more than fanciful assumptions based on the very limited and flawed experience of a small number people who would be considered uneducated and ignorant by modern educational standards. At least scientists have the common decency to present falsifiable hypotheses, the same cannot be said of those who dreamed up philosophy and metaphysics.

Personally, I think they're non-subjects that don't actually express any meaning or truth; a combination of folk wisdom and superstition that has no value other than as a curiosity for cultural anthropologists.
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« Reply #70 on: January 20, 2012, 04:36:55 PM »

As long as gods continue to live in the realm of the unknown on the edges of science their dominion will continue to shrink, day after day, as it has for the past few centuries.

Not necessarily true. Your way of thinking is manipulated by accounting practices rather than science. I sometimes fall victim to this way of thinking. In accounting there always needs to be a result or accountability. So the increase of one always necessitates the decrease of the other. In science once a truth is realized one usually finds a situation where a new horizon is opened to a new set of problems. Usually a set that is more difficult and vast than the one that was just realized. Making us aware of how little we really know. Besides that, you can only draw a conclusion like that if you believe in a finite end to our surroundings.
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« Reply #71 on: January 20, 2012, 04:40:30 PM »

Doesn't the outright refusal to acknowledge even the possibility of God invalidate any hypothesis? Is it not a scientist's job to evaluate all possible explanations in a given subject?

As science has not disproven God, is it then not scientist's job to at least acknowledge the possibility of divine intervention?

Wouln't that be the same as me, if I were a cosmologist, investigating weird movements of bodies to immidately discount Dark Matter because I didn't believe in it?

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« Reply #72 on: January 20, 2012, 04:45:29 PM »

The existence or non-existence of God isn't even scientifically falsifiable anyway, so why does this discussion keep happening? It seems like it definitely falls into not even wrong territory whether you're a believer or not.

Then again, I'm a word scientist, not a beaker and test tube scientist. I have no doubt that God exists; He speaks to me every day. Sometimes I even listen.
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« Reply #73 on: January 20, 2012, 04:56:11 PM »

As long as gods continue to live in the realm of the unknown on the edges of science their dominion will continue to shrink, day after day, as it has for the past few centuries.

Not necessarily true. Your way of thinking is manipulated by accounting practices rather than science. I sometimes fall victim to this way of thinking. In accounting there always needs to be a result or accountability. So the increase of one always necessitates the decrease of the other. In science once a truth is realized one usually finds a situation where a new horizon is opened to a new set of problems. Usually a set that is more difficult and vast than the one that was just realized. Making us aware of how little we really know. Besides that, you can only draw a conclusion like that if you believe in a finite end to our surroundings.

I don't know that what I said must necessarily happen, I do believe it's possible for religion to escape that trap. However, considering how Christianity has commonly been presented in the west over the last few hundred years (persecuting Galileo, opposing Darwin, questioning physics, etc.), I believe this largely has been the case.

So I don't necessarily disagree with you, but I'm afraid many Christians might; at least in action, if not in theory. Wink
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« Reply #74 on: January 20, 2012, 05:03:56 PM »

Doesn't the outright refusal to acknowledge even the possibility of God invalidate any hypothesis? Is it not a scientist's job to evaluate all possible explanations in a given subject?

As science has not disproven God, is it then not scientist's job to at least acknowledge the possibility of divine intervention?

Wouln't that be the same as me, if I were a cosmologist, investigating weird movements of bodies to immidately discount Dark Matter because I didn't believe in it?

An outright refusal to evaluate evidence because it may lead to an unwanted conclusion would certainly undermine scientific integrity. But refusing to consider a hypothesis because no repeatable, verifiable evidence has been presented on its behalf is perfectly reasonable. Yes, God might theoretically exist, so might the flying spaghetti monster, but I don't see enough evidence of either to justify adding an extra and unnecessary layer of complexity to our current scientific theories.

But I agree it's not impossible for a deity to exist, I just find it to be highly improbable. Wink
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« Reply #75 on: January 20, 2012, 05:28:11 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

The fact that we don't know something does not automatically imply that it is unknowable. Wink We can and will gain a greater understanding of the big bang over time, that's the entire point of projects like the LHC at CERN, to recreate the conditions surrounding the big bang so we can study them...the LHC isn't quite getting us back to the Plank epoch but that will be the next step. Also, I don't think that simply because a dimensionless universe is outside our current experience that we are unable to understand it, yes time is central to our experience from day to day but if we weren't capable of stepping back and looking at problems in a manner more general than our common experience would allow we wouldn't have the level of development in mathematics and physics that we enjoy today.

But that is the problem, mathematical equations are not a time machine, they are an ASSUMPTION.  Further, how does anyone know that CERN recreates the Big Bang when the Big Bang itself is entirely a hypothetical at this point, especially considering that it has yet to be proven conclusively because the current models break down as we wind the clock back to the instant just after this speculated event.  Again then, your problem is that you seem to take scientific theory as facts of reality, and that is where I pulled the anthropomorphism card, because HUMAN beings took the observations, human beings speculated the calculations, and human beings postulated the inferences, but none of these can hardly be said to be purely or abstracted facts.  There simply is no such thing, the human mind interprets and shapes all aspects of how we perceive reality, science is therefore no more or less objective than any other human art form, as sophisticated as it may be, we shouldn't be so smug as to assume we can know anything in the absolute sense.
All this science is based currently on human technology which skews the results and observations according to the lens of the observer, in this case of CERN and computers, the human programming determines the outcome, so it entirely an anthropomorphic situation.


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I have seen no evidence that such limitations even exist; 'limitations' are usually nothing more than a lack of imagination.


Wait, maybe you should read that again, because surely you didn't intend to mean what it says.  Of course there are limits, because imagination is not real, but reality is, and subsequently by nature REALITY is the limit.  For example, there are limits to our observations of distant stars and galaxies by the sheer physical distance and scale.  So we device wonderful calculations and technology to speculate on what the raw data of light energy coming to the earth, but the technology is determining the outcome, the results are not entirely objective, but subjective to the human calculations. Computers are not objective, they are human creations and are subjective to the human perspective then, computers can only do what humans tell them.

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Particle physics may not be the easiest subject in the world to understand and I know that the level of statistical analysis required in this field puts it outside the reach of many people's understanding, but it's hardly magic, it follows scientific processes to perform and validate experiments and arrive at objective conclusions.

thank you for the synopsis but I was not asking a literal question about CERN projects, I am well aware of what kinds of experiments they are conducting and what they are hoping to find, you missed my point.  That was an existential question.  CERN is a human creation based entirely on technology. If sometimes my computer doesn't even work well enough to check my email, how can we all be so sure and trustworthy that the computers at CERN or somehow divine and make no mistakes? USER ERROR is the common plague of computing, so why take such divine faith in the results? THAT IS NOT SCIENCE my friend, that is snake-handling at its finest Wink

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In the context of particle physics, they're generally just used to perform the statistical analysis required to acquire the required level of certainty about experiments. If you have a concern it should be with the mathematics, not the computers that just crunch the numbers. Also, I don't think it's accurate to say that a computer is anthropomorphic, rather their computational class is limited by the exact same things that limit the computational class of human brains, namely the conditions imposed by the laws of physics. We can devise far more powerful computational classes on paper, the laws of physics as we currently understand them just make building them out of our reach.


Wrong, computers are not limited by the rules of physics, they are limited by the ingenuity of their programmers.  Please stop forgetting that computers are not self-existing entities, they only compute what we tell them, hence they are anthropomorphic machines, that are created by humans to reflect the human mind which is inputted as data.  The decisions the computer makes about the data is entirely based on the programming which is done by who, oh right, people Wink

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But we can see the effects of the big bang, namely the universe itself. We can see how particles react to each other and we can reconstruct other particles that don't exist today or at least don't exist in quantities and locations that we can detect them. It's not a field of pure speculation and assumption, but a very rigorous field dominated by hard working scientists who have carefully and rationally observed the universe to develop falsifiable hypotheses and then tested those hypotheses using the most exacting scientific standards.

No we can't, we observe certain aspects of reality and we make logical inferences and conclusions about the data we record, however, simply stated, we do not witness the effects of the Big Band, or of Black Holes, or any other speculative science.  All the science and work they do is speculative interpretation of the data they collect, the data is humanized by the humanity of the observer, it is never raw.  Raw data is simply the universe as it exists, once people start making interpretations we move out of the realm of pure fact and delve into speculation. I am not necessarily saying the speculations are incorrect, rather I am just trying to point out that they are human creations.

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If want to dismiss something as being anthropomorphic, then philosophy and metaphysics are the fields you should be targeting. They have relied on human experience and human prejudice to a point that is almost embarrassing. In fact, I would argue that they are largely nothing more than fanciful assumptions based on the very limited and flawed experience of a small number people who would be considered uneducated and ignorant by modern educational standards. At least scientists have the common decency to present falsifiable hypotheses, the same cannot be said of those who dreamed up philosophy and metaphysics.

I wasn't being dismissive at all, just realistic.  I LOVE SCIENCE by the way, the nerdier the better, but I accept openly that all we learn in science is as subjective and anthropomorphic as any other human created art form, be it music, architecture, culture, dance, and yes, science.  The original scientists before the 20th century Iconoclast movement understood this intuitively, it is only lately that scientists have been silly enough to think themselves more than they are.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #76 on: January 20, 2012, 05:29:27 PM »

I want the next thread to be:  "Re: Why wont God heal Asteriktos? - atheist's responce"  Tongue
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« Reply #77 on: January 20, 2012, 05:34:36 PM »

As long as gods continue to live in the realm of the unknown on the edges of science their dominion will continue to shrink, day after day, as it has for the past few centuries.

Not necessarily true. Your way of thinking is manipulated by accounting practices rather than science. I sometimes fall victim to this way of thinking. In accounting there always needs to be a result or accountability. So the increase of one always necessitates the decrease of the other. In science once a truth is realized one usually finds a situation where a new horizon is opened to a new set of problems. Usually a set that is more difficult and vast than the one that was just realized. Making us aware of how little we really know. Besides that, you can only draw a conclusion like that if you believe in a finite end to our surroundings.

I don't know that what I said must necessarily happen, I do believe it's possible for religion to escape that trap. However, considering how Christianity has commonly been presented in the west over the last few hundred years (persecuting Galileo, opposing Darwin, questioning physics, etc.), I believe this largely has been the case.

So I don't necessarily disagree with you, but I'm afraid many Christians might; at least in action, if not in theory. Wink

 I'm sure that you and I agree that if science and religion don't coexist. Over time one will certainly end up as fiction. Unfortunately we have instances even in orthodoxy where people take a hard line approach. They think the bible speaks to them in scientific truths. I don't see how they can formulate scientific truths from such vagueness. When God says he created the trees it could mean anything from planting a seed to a big bang. It's more or less for the believer to decide where to begin. The bottom line is that the bible is giving us spiritual truths and not scientific ones. If one follows based of it's spirituality they will not go wrong.
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« Reply #78 on: January 22, 2012, 06:58:54 PM »

I never understood how this whole question about where the universe came from and whether it came from nothing or not really has anything to offer to the God debate. I see fallacy on both sides of the spectrum. I think that Christians are guilty for trying to impede on science by making a God-of-the-gaps fallacy and the atheists are guilty for trying to overstep the bounds of science by dreaming of science someday delivering the deathblow to God. But this is impossible. Science is only the study of the natural universe we live in; the mechanics, how it works and functions. Christians and atheists tend to mistake mechanism and agent. You have the Christians trying to extent their agent (God) into the mechanism and this impedes science, such as 6 Day Creationists. But then you have atheists who absurdly believe that if they can explain entirely how the mechanism works, then they will be able to remove the need for an agent. But, that makes no sense. Just because you know how an engine works does not mean that you can disprove the existence of Henry Ford, because the deep questions still remain; did the engine come from an agent? Did it need an agent? Is that agent God and can we know Him? The deepest philosophical questions like this are going to be things that we all personally need to decide for ourselves and will exist no matter what science can tell us and both sides; Christians and atheists, I think are guilty for trying to abuse science in regards to these questions, whether by impeding on it or overstepping its bounds. As for the origin of the universe, even though it is irrelevent to me, I still do think about it quite often because of curiousity. I honestly do not understand how literal 'nothingness' could have existed before the Big Bang and that something could come from nothing, and I do not think it makes sense to believe that God could really create something out of nothing. My personal opinion is that the universe always existed, maybe somehow as a literal part of God, but it existed in a different form than the way it is now. And, instead of actually creating the universe, the Big Bang only changed the form of the universe into the way we see it now. When God created the universe through the Big Bang, I do not think that He literally created anything, only, He changed the form of something through the Big Bang.
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« Reply #79 on: January 22, 2012, 07:35:37 PM »

I never understood how this whole question about where the universe came from and whether it came from nothing or not really has anything to offer to the God debate. I see fallacy on both sides of the spectrum.

I think that Christians are guilty for trying to impede on science by making a God-of-the-gaps fallacy and the atheists are guilty for trying to overstep the bounds of science by dreaming of science someday delivering the deathblow to God. But this is impossible. Science is only the study of the natural universe we live in; the mechanics, how it works and functions. Christians and atheists tend to mistake mechanism and agent. You have the Christians trying to extent their agent (God) into the mechanism and this impedes science, such as 6 Day Creationists.

But then you have atheists who absurdly believe that if they can explain entirely how the mechanism works, then they will be able to remove the need for an agent. But, that makes no sense. Just because you know how an engine works does not mean that you can disprove the existence of Henry Ford, because the deep questions still remain; did the engine come from an agent? Did it need an agent? Is that agent God and can we know Him?

The deepest philosophical questions like this are going to be things that we all personally need to decide for ourselves and will exist no matter what science can tell us and both sides; Christians and atheists, I think are guilty for trying to abuse science in regards to these questions, whether by impeding on it or overstepping its bounds.

As for the origin of the universe, even though it is irrelevent to me, I still do think about it quite often because of curiousity. I honestly do not understand how literal 'nothingness' could have existed before the Big Bang and that something could come from nothing, and I do not think it makes sense to believe that God could really create something out of nothing.

My personal opinion is that the universe always existed, maybe somehow as a literal part of God, but it existed in a different form than the way it is now. And, instead of actually creating the universe, the Big Bang only changed the form of the universe into the way we see it now. When God created the universe through the Big Bang, I do not think that He literally created anything, only, He changed the form of something through the Big Bang.
that is such a good responce, but very hard to read due to lack or paragraphs

I took the liberty of breaking it up into more managable chunks for you, as a favour, so people can read it easier

as far as the post is concerned, it is a very fair point
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« Reply #80 on: January 22, 2012, 09:11:15 PM »

I've always thought there is a harmony between science and religion. I think it's a mystery. Something we have not been given the comprehension of. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist. We can strive for it and we must. The physical word is connected to the spiritual. I believe this relationship is mutually inclusive. Science can't argue against God and neither should a religion. He gives science it's ability and the same for religion. If something doesn't appear to sync I try not to worry. I know there is no conflict, only compliment, and everything was made to glorify God. I think science can be a way to shatter the box we put God in. Religion and love can break the box the too. We must constantly shatter the boxes we create. Please correct me if I'm wrong.
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« Reply #81 on: January 23, 2012, 11:03:52 AM »

I never understood how this whole question about where the universe came from and whether it came from nothing or not really has anything to offer to the God debate. I see fallacy on both sides of the spectrum. I think that Christians are guilty for trying to impede on science by making a God-of-the-gaps fallacy and the atheists are guilty for trying to overstep the bounds of science by dreaming of science someday delivering the deathblow to God. But this is impossible. Science is only the study of the natural universe we live in; the mechanics, how it works and functions. Christians and atheists tend to mistake mechanism and agent. You have the Christians trying to extent their agent (God) into the mechanism and this impedes science, such as 6 Day Creationists. But then you have atheists who absurdly believe that if they can explain entirely how the mechanism works, then they will be able to remove the need for an agent. But, that makes no sense. Just because you know how an engine works does not mean that you can disprove the existence of Henry Ford, because the deep questions still remain; did the engine come from an agent? Did it need an agent? Is that agent God and can we know Him? The deepest philosophical questions like this are going to be things that we all personally need to decide for ourselves and will exist no matter what science can tell us and both sides; Christians and atheists, I think are guilty for trying to abuse science in regards to these questions, whether by impeding on it or overstepping its bounds. As for the origin of the universe, even though it is irrelevent to me, I still do think about it quite often because of curiousity. I honestly do not understand how literal 'nothingness' could have existed before the Big Bang and that something could come from nothing, and I do not think it makes sense to believe that God could really create something out of nothing. My personal opinion is that the universe always existed, maybe somehow as a literal part of God, but it existed in a different form than the way it is now. And, instead of actually creating the universe, the Big Bang only changed the form of the universe into the way we see it now. When God created the universe through the Big Bang, I do not think that He literally created anything, only, He changed the form of something through the Big Bang.

   You make some very good points James. The only thing I disagree with is your possible belief. That the universe preexisted the big bang. Or that matter in general was already there and god fashioned it to his likeness.
     The Creed clearly states that God created out of nothing. To add to this I would just say that Aristotle's philosophy of "what has motion has cause" is at the forefront here. Think about it? Space and time are a result of motion. The only reason for it's existence is a separation from the moment of origin. AKA the big bang. If nobody is there to set something in motion than nothing will move. Ever.. Something has to trigger the onset to time and space or else it wouldn't exist. There was an energy present at the time of the blast. It couldn't have bin gasses because they are a part of matter themselves and can only exist after the bang itself.
   Atheistic minded science as of late has bin meddling with the idea of a preexisting universe that keeps on reincarnating. For the very reason of evading the possibilities of a creator.
  
« Last Edit: January 23, 2012, 11:21:19 AM by Tzimis » Logged

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« Reply #82 on: January 24, 2012, 04:21:28 PM »

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.



Would you please define 'before' since I really am not clear what you mean by it in this context. 'Before' and 'after' are concepts tied to our current experience with time, I'm not sure what it means in a system where time doesn't exist.

Of course not, and I don't have to.  Onus probandi incumbit ei qui dicit, non ei qui negat.  You made the assertion that you could explain the universe.  You haven't posted the resolution of the problem of unification, the nature of matter and why it exists, time, fundamental problems of motion, etc.  Alan Guth at MIT says he has a problem with a universe that doesn't have a beginning.  Burt Ovrut at the University of PA says something can't come from nothing.  You claim you have the answer.  Very well.  Submit the answer and accept your prize.  Stop leaving us in suspense.  We anxiously await enlightenment from your brilliance.


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There are a lot of questions about the *origins* of the universe, how it is the way it is, why it is the way it is and what will become of it.  These aren't questions about "mechanics."  These are fundamental questions about what the "universe" is. 

Seem like issues of mechanics to me, the big questions about the big bang are things like the relationship between gravity and the other forces and how did matter behave before the separation of these forces at the end of the Plank epoch.
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I have to laugh at you guys, I really do.  I have a brother-in-law just like you, doctorate in mathematics and everything.  The guy thinks he knows *everything.*  For as much as he knows, he sure lives in a crummy neighborhood.  You'd think he'd take the five minutes it takes him to explain absolutely anything and use it to write a paper for Nature or Journal of Applied Physics and get some kind of prize. 

Most of this stuff was published almost a century ago...you're not going to score any points in the academic community for republishing a paper from the 20's. Now if one can figure out the relationship between quantum gravity and quantum mechanics there's probably a Nobel prize in it.

You found the answers to the fundamental questions of the universe published in a paper in the 1920s?  Please share!  String Theory came much later and revolutionized the way we see the very basis of the universe.  String Theory itself, however, has not been proven.  Is the universe made up of strings or not?  Is there a fundamental minimum limit to distance?  How many dimensions are there really?  Are there other universes or not?  Are we all stuck on some brane, or is that just wrong?  None of these questions have been answered . . . until you found some paper from the 1920s.  (Since you can explain the universe, did you actually travel to the 1920s to discuss it with the author?  Next time, can I come?)

All you've done is discussed mechanics (Big Bang, nature of time, gravity, all the "problems" of modern physics they are trying to resolve at CERN), which you claim are the only things *not* explained.  Why are you hiding the secret? 

You made the claim that you could explain the universe without a deity.  At first I was a little excited that I had discovered the one person who could explain it all.  Right now I'm feeling jilted.  Post the answers, please.  Don't leave us poor silly boobs in ignorance.
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« Reply #83 on: January 24, 2012, 04:51:44 PM »

Of course not, but I can explain the universe without a deity which renders the question moot.



Would you please define 'before' since I really am not clear what you mean by it in this context. 'Before' and 'after' are concepts tied to our current experience with time, I'm not sure what it means in a system where time doesn't exist.

Of course not, and I don't have to.  Onus probandi incumbit ei qui dicit, non ei qui negat.  You made the assertion that you could explain the universe.  You haven't posted the resolution of the problem of unification, the nature of matter and why it exists, time, fundamental problems of motion, etc.  Alan Guth at MIT says he has a problem with a universe that doesn't have a beginning.  Burt Ovrut at the University of PA says something can't come from nothing.  You claim you have the answer.  Very well.  Submit the answer and accept your prize.  Stop leaving us in suspense.  We anxiously await enlightenment from your brilliance.


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There are a lot of questions about the *origins* of the universe, how it is the way it is, why it is the way it is and what will become of it.  These aren't questions about "mechanics."  These are fundamental questions about what the "universe" is. 

Seem like issues of mechanics to me, the big questions about the big bang are things like the relationship between gravity and the other forces and how did matter behave before the separation of these forces at the end of the Plank epoch.
Quote
I have to laugh at you guys, I really do.  I have a brother-in-law just like you, doctorate in mathematics and everything.  The guy thinks he knows *everything.*  For as much as he knows, he sure lives in a crummy neighborhood.  You'd think he'd take the five minutes it takes him to explain absolutely anything and use it to write a paper for Nature or Journal of Applied Physics and get some kind of prize. 

Most of this stuff was published almost a century ago...you're not going to score any points in the academic community for republishing a paper from the 20's. Now if one can figure out the relationship between quantum gravity and quantum mechanics there's probably a Nobel prize in it.

You found the answers to the fundamental questions of the universe published in a paper in the 1920s?  Please share!  String Theory came much later and revolutionized the way we see the very basis of the universe.  String Theory itself, however, has not been proven.  Is the universe made up of strings or not?  Is there a fundamental minimum limit to distance?  How many dimensions are there really?  Are there other universes or not?  Are we all stuck on some brane, or is that just wrong?  None of these questions have been answered . . . until you found some paper from the 1920s.  (Since you can explain the universe, did you actually travel to the 1920s to discuss it with the author?  Next time, can I come?)

All you've done is discussed mechanics (Big Bang, nature of time, gravity, all the "problems" of modern physics they are trying to resolve at CERN), which you claim are the only things *not* explained.  Why are you hiding the secret? 

You made the claim that you could explain the universe without a deity.  At first I was a little excited that I had discovered the one person who could explain it all.  Right now I'm feeling jilted.  Post the answers, please.  Don't leave us poor silly boobs in ignorance.

Or even the creation of information out of nothing (DNA).
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