jump to navigation

Points to ponder June 22, 2006

Posted by dr. gonzo in Miscellaneous.
trackback

Just a couple of points to ponder, perhaps someone has something to say about the following two queries.

1) The human quality of associating “shiny” with “valuable” seems to be fairly ubiquitous. Why? Are we truly that simple? Fish like shiny things too, probably because they look like other fish (read food), but why humans?

2) From Scott Adams novel “The Religion War,” The dictionary defines “faith” as belief without evidence and “stupidity” as unreasoned thinking. Is faith a form of unreasoned thinking? (I have my own answer on this one, I will share it after someone else does).

Happy thinking. :)

Advertisements

Comments»

1. Matt - June 22, 2006

1) Haven’t really thought about it, but now that you mention it, there may be a kernel of truth hidden there somewhere. There’s probably a particular field devoted to such a thing.

2) My snarky side wants to respond with a “yes.” Actually, so does my intellectual side. Um, so yeah.

2. dr. gonzo - June 22, 2006

Alright Matt, here I go. I posed this question last nite with 3 other people and the response was, “I think the consensus in this group would be yes.

Then I said the following:

If we project the word faith outside of the realm of religion the answer has to be no. Here is why.

Essentially everything we believe that we are not “experts” on we take on faith.

Can you explain gravity in the complex physical terms that “prove” it, doubtful, and even if you could it’s not as if you did the research that proves it yourself. Yet you believe it to be fact.

Faith cannot always equal unreasoned thinking if that is the case.

This was quite the mind-fuck for my friends. ;)

3. Glock21 - June 24, 2006

1) I’ve had many a long and absurd conversation with New World Order conspiracy theorists who seem to think that shiny rocks are the ultimate basis for an economy. I try to point out how silly that sounds… we aren’t cave men any more. Shiny rocks just shouldn’t be all that important. But try explaining that to the gold worshippers out there.

2) Some religious beliefs aren’t necessarily stupidity… but lack of available methods to find a solution to a question. It’s similar to a scientific hypothesis… but with no known mechanism to test and observe. On the other hand, some religious beliefs are so absurd to an outside party who has not been brought up to believe such mystical tales that it definitely seems like a stretch that anyone could consider it feasible… let alone absolutely true. Especially considering that the basis of many of these religions comes from whackjobs wondering around in the desert more than a thousand years before there was any deep understanding of much of anything.

Is it “smart” for someone in our modern age to adhere to the teachings of people who lived prior to any major advancement in human knowledge? You might be able to find some relevant advice about human nature… but beyond that… probably nothing notable about understanding the universe.

Having a die hard belief that it is all absolutely true is pretty naive, imho.

4. dr. gonzo - June 26, 2006

Glock 21:

Religion is not similar to a scientific hypothesis. The scientific method is quite different from the religious method of explaining the world.

Science will never ask you take things on “faith,” without evidence.

” . . but with no known mechanism to test and observe.”

That statement goes against what you say about religion and science being similar. The fact that religion has no way to test or observe its hypotheses greatly differentiates it from science. Greatly. They aren’t even kind of alike.

5. yinn - June 26, 2006

I think the shiny thing is related to the light thing. We instinctively are drawn to light, related to being a daytime animal I suppose.

I’m too lazy to tackle #2.

6. Glock21 - June 28, 2006

Gonzo said: “Religion is not similar to a scientific hypothesis. The scientific method is quite different from the religious method of explaining the world.”

Gonzo said: “That statement goes against what you say about religion and science being similar. The fact that religion has no way to test or observe its hypotheses greatly differentiates it from science.”

I said: “Some religious beliefs aren’t necessarily stupidity… but lack of available methods to find a solution to a question. It’s similar to a scientific hypothesis… but with no known mechanism to test and observe.”

Note that I didn’t say religion was similar to science… just that some religious beliefs are similar to a scientific hypothesis. I was pointing out that it differs from the scientific method at the point of being able to test and observe… which is why religion and religious beliefs are not similar to science or the scientific method. There are plenty of examples of a scientific hypothesis for which there was yet any known way to test for it. Such as the ether theory before the M&M experiment. If you can prove the big bang, what would your hypothesis be on what caused the big bang… and how long will it be until someone can find a way to test that hypothesis, if ever?

Many religious beliefs are more mythology than anything else and don’t even fit into the ‘some religious beliefs’ I was referring to there. The mythology beliefs are what I consider far more absurd to believe in.

7. dr. gonzo - June 28, 2006

I’m an idiot, don’t mind me.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: