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Is atheism a religion?


Off-Topic Discussions

851 to 900 of 1,394 << first < prev | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | next > last >>

Darkwing Duck wrote:
ciretose wrote:


If you believe only in the natural, what can be tested and replicated, what conforms to the laws of the universe, you don't believe in the supernatural.
I believe in the power of art to motivate people. Is that a supernatural or natural power in your opinion? Given how you've defined 'natural', I have to assume that you believe the power of art t motivate people is a supernatural power.

Natural, your talking about psychological and biological properties of the brain. I would need compelling evidence to consider it supernatural.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Samnell wrote:
ciretose wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:


Art is not the same thing as color, though.
Art can motivate people without using color. Seeing as how we're all geeks here, a good example of that is Maus by Art Spegelman. If I remember correctly, the only place Maus used color was on the cover of the book.

If you consider Art to be "magic" and "supernatural" feel free.

I find it to be completely natural.

Gah, I had almost the same conversation at tedious length with some people about music once. It took pages for them to admit that music was patterns of sound.
Of course music is patterns of sound, but is its ability to motivate us testable and replicable? If I put 10 people in a room and play the same sheet of music, how do I independently test each of them to prove that they responded to the music in the exact same way?

no to brains are identical, but you can put them in an fMRI and observe their brains reaction to the music like Geschwind(1972) did with speech to map the pathways involved with speech, or you could take interview or essay type data and code the responses, to get qualitative data from the

qualitative data, and with a large enough sample you could generalise up from there. You could use questionnaires to get pure quanative data on their perception of the experience. and so on, and so on....


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Samnell wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:


Of course music is patterns of sound, but is its ability to motivate us testable and replicable?

Yes and trivially so.

Darkwing Duck wrote:
If I put 10 people in a room and play the same sheet of music, how do I independently test each of them to prove that they responded to the music in the exact same way?
You observe their responses. If they all had the same responses, we're done. If not we investigate how they differed, which will all come down to personal histories and present circumstances.
Using that approach, religion is as testable and replicable as music.

No one claiming religion doesn't exist. The existance of Gods on the other hand cannot be tested.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
DarkwingDuck wrote:
Of course music is patterns of sound, but is its ability to motivate us testable and replicable? If I put 10 people in a room and play the same sheet of music, how do I independently test each of them to prove that they responded to the music in the exact same way?

You put them in a room with an MRI while playing the music and you scan their brains. They've actually done this for a bunch of different studies.

The thing is that their brains DON'T all act the same. Different people have different reactions to music. There still however is a statistically significant trend in how people react to it, so music does X to people is still correct even if music does X to everyone isn't.

If I wanted to know which song would best motivate you to visit your grandmother's grave, I couldn't test that with an MRI.

You could however test using questionnaires which song did that for an individual. A significantly powerful technology could in principle measure every neuron firing and map it perfectly.In either case it probably couldn't practically be done, the number songs ever to have ever to have existed being just to great making it a prohibitively lengthy process.

But out inability to currently measure something does not make it supernatural, any more than our current inability to explain a thing, makes it supernatural.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
Samnell wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:


Of course music is patterns of sound, but is its ability to motivate us testable and replicable?

Yes and trivially so.

Darkwing Duck wrote:
If I put 10 people in a room and play the same sheet of music, how do I independently test each of them to prove that they responded to the music in the exact same way?
You observe their responses. If they all had the same responses, we're done. If not we investigate how they differed, which will all come down to personal histories and present circumstances.
Using that approach, religion is as testable and replicable as music.

And your point is?

I don't think anyone here is claiming that religion is not a real thing that has noticeable effects on people.

But you cannot tell me how those affects are invoked. In the same way, we know that a person who is spiritually open can better tolerate pain, but we do not know why.

Not yet, but it is a question of biology and psychology, the answer is something we can potentially find.

Your arguing for a god of the gaps, that's a bad idea unless you want to see your god loose his purview to science.


ciretose wrote:
Hitdice wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
ciretose wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:


If I wanted to know which song would best motivate you to visit your grandmother's grave, I couldn't test that with an MRI.

Actually you could.
I'd like a reference that indicates that MRI images are that sensitive.
Just google FMRI.

And once again, a "miracle" becomes science.

And above the clouds is space, not heaven. We checked on the way to the moon.

Old news is old, Galileo checked Jupiter for us, we now know heaven isn't there as far off in time and space as the Quasars.


Sissyl wrote:

fMRI can determine what areas of your brain are active, giving a certain pattern. Now, I imagine a study would go something like taking an obscenely huge number of people as test subjects (and thus a ridiculously large budget), putting them in an MR scanner, doing a proper fMRI scan on them as you test various songs on different people. Then you tag them with a GPS tracker, and see which ones come within a certain distance from their grandmother's grave coordinates, as reported by them. Once you have a scale of "strong" song candidates, you take the top ones and do the testing on another huge group, to confirm if they visited their grandmothers' graves. Then you compare this to the baseline "visit your grandmother's grave" frequency if there is one, or you need a control group, using one of the worst songs for provoking VYGG responses in the first study. If you could find a significant difference between the two groups, you would know something about what patterns in your brain that deal with the VYGG response.

I am not saying it would be feasible, but it would be possible.

Wow....Does any one mind if I call todays compitition right here and just say sissyl wins the internetz?


Yay =) First time I won the internetz =)


Sissyl wrote:
Yay =) First time I won the internetz =)

Seriously, that is an awesome idea for an experimental method to determine which song cause VYGG, and which pathways govern it.


You know what would make this thread better?

Musical Interludes!

Truth be told, there are better songs about there being a God than there not being a God, so, in this vital respect, the theists win.

The Kinks--"God's Children"

Sister Rosetta Tharpe--"Up Above My Head"

African Head Charge--"Orderliness, Godliness, Discipline and Dignity"

The whole damn Opry--"I Saw the Light"


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Jean-Paul Sartre, Intrnet Troll wrote:

You know what would make this thread better?

Musical Interludes!

Truth be told, there are better songs about there being a God than there not being a God, so, in this vital respect, the theists win.

The Kinks--"God's Children"

Sister Rosetta Tharpe--"Up Above My Head"

African Head Charge--"Orderliness, Godliness, Discipline and Dignity"

The whole damn Opry--"I Saw the Light"

I raise you XTC


ciretose wrote:
They wouldn't respond the same way. If you gave a diabetic and a non-diabetic insulin, they also wouldn't respond the same way.

Therefore insulin is also magic, by DD standards (although not necessarily by anyone else's).


Darkwing Duck wrote:

But you cannot tell me how those affects are invoked. In the same way, we know that a person who is spiritually open can better tolerate pain, but we do not know why.

Classic God of the Gaps. We don't yet know "X," therefore it's magic.


Jean-Paul Sartre, Intrnet Troll wrote:

You know what would make this thread better?

Musical Interludes!

Truth be told, there are better songs about there being a God than there not being a God, so, in this vital respect, the theists win.

Doodle, given the atheist/anti-theist distinction, every instrumental out there is atheist music, and that's putting aside all the song lyrics that don't directly mention God. :P


Kirth Gersen wrote:
ciretose wrote:
They wouldn't respond the same way. If you gave a diabetic and a non-diabetic insulin, they also wouldn't respond the same way.
Therefore insulin is also magic, by DD standards (although not necessarily by anyone else's).

In Quantum physics everything behaves probabilistically not deterministically. No two particles in the same situation will react the same way at the same time.

Therefore it's all magic.

Spoiler:
Actually, I'm pretty much willing to agree with anyone who wants to argue that quantum mechanics is magic. 100% pure black magic


thejeff wrote:

In Quantum physics everything behaves probabilistically not deterministically. No two particles in the same situation will react the same way at the same time.

Therefore it's all magic.

Dood... you're getting chocolate in my peanut butter.


You guys know that magic is just what everyone calls science in a world without standardized education, right? That is, the Romans who we get the word from, differentiated between magic and witchcraft. Magi are awesome cause they know stuff, whereas witches are terrifying cause they'll bite off your nose if you sleep in a graveyard.


Zombieneighbours wrote:
I raise you XTC

When the music post was brought up, I thought EXACTLY this, but decided to continue lurking instead. I LOVE that song.


Kirth Gersen wrote:
thejeff wrote:

In Quantum physics everything behaves probabilistically not deterministically. No two particles in the same situation will react the same way at the same time.

Therefore it's all magic.
Dood... you're getting chocolate in my peanut butter.

If we go far enough down that rabbit hole we get into th realms of 'the many angled ones who live at the bottom of the Mandelbrot set.


I like how magic isn't real magic, but real magic doesn't exist.

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2013

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:

But you cannot tell me how those affects are invoked. In the same way, we know that a person who is spiritually open can better tolerate pain, but we do not know why.

Classic God of the Gaps. We don't yet know "X," therefore it's magic.

Tide comes in, tide goes out. You can't explain that.

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2013

thejeff wrote:


In Quantum physics everything behaves probabilistically not deterministically.

This could be a whole derail...it isn't a coincidence that the areas we least understand are the areas we are least able to accurately measures.

On topic, either you believe that everything has a reasonable answer or you don't and you think some things are magical.

I believe in the former.

Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

meatrace wrote:
Or that I have finally sussed out DD's subtle trollery?

This. He's been doing it for months.

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2013

1 person marked this as a favorite.
bugleyman wrote:
meatrace wrote:
Or that I have finally sussed out DD's subtle trollery?
This. He's been doing it for months.

Subtle?


Zombieneighbours wrote:
I raise you XTC

I don't know much about poker, but I believe that before you raise a bet, you first have to match what's already in the pot.

But, in the interests of continuing the musical flamewar (c'mon believers, join in, don't let an athiest do your fighting for you):

Run for a Long Time


bugleyman wrote:
meatrace wrote:
Or that I have finally sussed out DD's subtle trollery?
This. He's been doing it for months.

Now, now, let's be nice. Citizen Duck has devoted many an hour to providing all of us with hours of entertainment.


Hitdice wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
ciretose wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:


If I wanted to know which song would best motivate you to visit your grandmother's grave, I couldn't test that with an MRI.

Actually you could.
I'd like a reference that indicates that MRI images are that sensitive.
Just google FMRI.

I know what an FMRI is. But, an FMRI may let us know that somebody is remembering something, it won't tell us what they are remembering.

And, no, I didn't make a God of the gaps argument. I didn't claim that just because we don't know something means that God is at work.

Now, since the rest of you seem more interested in calling me a troll rather than having a discussion on the actual topic of this thread (which isn't me), I'm going to hide this discussion.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

But...

This can't be victory...

I still feel so empty.


A conversation about atheism that turns into a talk about the existence of an apparently monotheistic god?

Color me surprised.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: Calling atheism a religion is like calling someone who doesn't drink an alcoholic.


I am hiding this thread in solidarity with Citizen Duck!


Darkwing Duck wrote:
But, an FMRI may let us know that somebody is remembering something, it won't tell us what they are remembering.

This is largely empty and borderline masturbatory now that he has (ostensibly) hidden the thread:

YET. It doesn't show what you're thinking of YET. It's very new technology and very frontier research. Heck, we haven't figured out all the nuances of atomic theory yet and we've had a sizable portion of our foreign policy predicated on it for decades. It will likely take even longer for the will to manifest to find out the deepest secrets of the human brain, especially considering parties like yourself that see trying to scientifically examine something you think of as "art" to be abhorrent.

Give it 50 years.

Assuming we haven't, by that time, already experienced global economic collapse, but that's a WHOLE other thread.


Jean-Paul Sartre, Intrnet Troll wrote:
I am hiding this thread in solidarity with Citizen Duck!

Aww, two trolls driven away in one day :P

But now this thread is probably dead, because DD, despite his many faults, was the only person to even ATTEMPT a cogent argument about why atheism is a religion. The rest amount to "psh, you atheists think you're so superior but you're religious too, na na na boo boo!".

Scarab Sages

So who's going to keep moving the goalposts?


We need more "Is *random thing* a religion?" threads. Think of the comedic possibilities.


Sanakht Inaros wrote:

So who's going to keep moving the goalposts?

I think he took them with him.

I haven't seen them since they were spinning wildly around the field last night.

Grand Lodge

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Sanakht Inaros wrote:
So who's going to keep moving the goalposts?

I would, but I don't believe in them. No one has shown me any proof they exist. They keep talking about them, and how people are moving them, but I've never seen where they are before or after someone moves them.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Darkwing Duck wrote:


Now, since the rest of you seem more interested in calling me a troll rather than having a discussion on the actual topic of this thread (which isn't me), I'm going to hide this discussion.

Always a pain when the marks have all caught on.

Liberty's Edge

Someone has to volunteer to be the punching bag. I am not volunteering.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

I thought you gave up, Andrew?


In most cases I'd first ask the person to tell me what he thinks atheism is and then I'd answer him according to his understanding, followed by a proper definition and answering by that definition.

Atheism, in its broadest sense, is a lack of belief in deities. Atheists are more likely to identify themselves with that definition rather than the narrower definition of "a belief that no deities exist." Atheism is not a religion, no more than believing or not believing in the existence of Thor is a religion. Some religions are inherently atheistic, such as the beliefs of certain Buddhists, yet many atheists are non-religious and do not participate in any religious practices.

Source - Me (I'm a non-religious atheist).

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
TriOmegaZero wrote:
I thought you gave up, Andrew?

Never-ever-ever-never. But I'm in Korea, and I was done for that night because it was something like 2:30 AM and the old neurons were misfiring quite a bit.

**Plus, I think Kirth might be smarter than me...at least when I'm nearly comatose with exhaustion.**

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Gotcha! (I think my dog is smarter than me when I'm at that point myself.)


2 people marked this as a favorite.
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Sanakht Inaros wrote:
So who's going to keep moving the goalposts?
I would, but I don't believe in them. No one has shown me any proof they exist. They keep talking about them, and how people are moving them, but I've never seen where they are before or after someone moves them.

Whereas I believe, in a general sense, that goalposts exist. They just have no bearing on my life.

;)

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16 , Star Voter 2013

I believe in believing in goalposts. It's virtuous to believe in them.

Liberty's Edge

You either know where the goalpost is or how fast someone's moving it. The best bet would be to spookify both ends of the field.

Ha. Ha-ha.


Andrew Turner wrote:
TriOmegaZero wrote:
I thought you gave up, Andrew?

Never-ever-ever-never. But I'm in Korea, and I was done for that night because it was something like 2:30 AM and the old neurons were misfiring quite a bit.

**Plus, I think Kirth might be smarter than me...at least when I'm nearly comatose with exhaustion.**

I pretty much always think that about Kirth and myself. Its why I aggressively avoid disagreement with him ;)


The Book of the Goalposts, a 6.000 year old document of How Man Should Live, is the only True book, and everyone who doesn't see this is a heretic!


Zombieneighbours wrote:
I pretty much always think that about Kirth and myself.

Geez -- got you guys fooled as hell. After you caught on to Duck's deception (pretending to debate with some semblance of Earthly logic), I figured that mine (pretending to have a brain) was next!


What am "Buh-rayun"?


Kirth Gersen wrote:
Zombieneighbours wrote:
I pretty much always think that about Kirth and myself.
Geez -- got you guys fooled as hell. After you caught on to Duck's deception (pretending to debate with some semblance of Earthly logic), I figured that mine (pretending to have a brain) was next!

Not sure it was saturian logic either ;)

But regardless, your not dumb Kirth, I mean your not the greatest mind of our time but you do pretty well ;)

Now if you wanna see stupid, you need only look at me...I actually miss this thread.... what is wrong with me?

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