Why We Believe in Gods: Andy Thomson (Lecture)

Why We Believe in Gods: Andy Thomson (Lecture)This lecture summarizes the scientific research that explains the human inclination to create divinity.

It is not a defense of atheism, but rather shows what science has to say about the various modules and capacities that humans have developed over the millenia that lend themselves to the generation and embrace of religious explanations.

Although the author make it clear that he is not a man of faith, the lecture is not an attack on faith so much as an account of why people might believe, other than because it's true. Very current and a good portal for someone seeking to learn more about the field.

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450 Comments / User Reviews

  1. knowledgeizpower

    And the religious debates are about to continue :0 is anyone exhausted yet?

  2. Matt Kukowski

    Alan Watts outlined all this long ago... and before Alan someone else. Because we write books about books about books. :)

  3. norlavine

    @knowledgeizpower
    Absolutely not! This guy is so excited, like he has discovered something new. The boys club will surely appear soon,but, I myself am off to bed - have to get up early, enjoy the debates when they happen xx

  4. Jack1952

    Great lecture. The confirmation bias syndrome was working overtime.

  5. MatarD

    I got exhausted a long time ago. I've been starting to look elsewhere. In my part of the world this debate died hundreds of years ago.

  6. Guest

    and where would that be? Never been to a place where there are no GOD debate, and i've been around.
    az

  7. Jack1952

    I don't mean to sound flippant but are you from planet Earth? I have never heard of such an enlightened place on this planet.

  8. His Forever

    Where are you from? Unless you're on a one-man island (with internet access), there's someone somewhere debating religion in some form.

  9. His Forever

    Yes, a bit. I need to ween myself off giving my honest opinion. I'm tyring.

  10. Epicurus

    i think i have been pretty good at avoiding as many of these debates as I can.

  11. jonathan jackward

    evolutionists make an assumption that there cannot be a universal energy of consciousness at the level of the singularity from which all complexity arises ie: matter
    yet the unified feild of consciousness has been proven for at least 2 years it is the level below the quantum and test after test verify this data, that matter consciously reacts when there is an observer and with itself ......fact. all this means is that there is a god, not one that has a brain not one that is separate, but one form of energy in which living things arise. no scientist has ever been able to take inorganic matter and create a living thing. nor has a scientist been a witness to nature doing that .therefore darwin is operating on a assumption. that inorganic material can spontaniously form itself into living things

  12. Achems_Razor

    More religion debates? no wonder am always so perpetually pi$$ed off. Science docs, please!

    And @jonathan jackward: whats with all the same repetitious posts on all the docs. no body is listening to you!

  13. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    Wow... another grand theory about pretty much EVERYTHING. This is embarrassing.

    So you say that there is a universal energy of consciousness, which you choose to call it God, which creates living things, and at the same time you don't even understand what actually EVOLUTION is.

    no scientist has ever been able to take inorganic matter and create a living thing. nor has a scientist been a witness to nature doing that.

    Also no one have ever witnessed universal energy of consciousness creating living things, but you still put it here. How come?

    therefore darwin is operating on a assumption. that inorganic material can spontaniously form itself into living things.

    Read what exactly EVOLUTION is. Don't show to others that you've educated yourself on the matter just by watching several YouTube clips.

    Edit: And don't post the same comment all over the place.

  14. Epicurus

    oh how little you know....

  15. Paul M Webb

    some people belive we came from a rock, i belive we came from the creator of everithing.

  16. Thomas Lyngmoe Berg

    ppl with low iq tend to use the supernatural to explain everything... Carl Sagan FTW!!

  17. Guest

    I never took an iq test in my life, so i am not sure how i would score. In writing this, i may just provoke a few suggestives scores! lol

    I agree with Sagan, we should not explain everything with the supernatural because anything that exist, anything that was seen, anything that was described, anything that was thought, IS.
    The only thing that isn't is not yet thought.
    az

  18. Guest

    @Epicurus
    I see you are showing again a bit of interest...your opinion is often on the money...even if it is to criticize me. I guess what i am saying is that i have learned a thing or two from you.
    az

  19. Guest

    The last doc by a scientist was a religious debate.
    azz

  20. Achems_Razor

    I took an online IQ test once, couldn't even get past the first question (LOL) Supernatural? Einstein used to have dreams about new science paradigms that he brought into action, even e=mc^2, I read that somewhere, forgot where.

  21. Tyler Partridge

    Theists cannot prove god exists, and Athiests cannot prove that he doesn't. If you allow yourself to tumble far enough down the rabbit hole, you come to the conclusion that the argument for, or against is inconsequential.

    Throughout history, one can see that every generation has always thought to have all the answers.. and in a way they did. They had all the answers that could be concluded from measurements taken with the instruments of their time. if it couldn't be measured, "theories" were created. Are we so arrogant to believe at this very moment in time, that we are impervious to this historical trend?

    The human psyche is very fragile, and clings to lables or ideologies to indentify itself with. A tactic Christianity has exploited for millenia in regards to human mortality. The idea of knowing nothing is terrifying, so we manifest the answers. This behaviour reciprocates between both organized religion, and the scientific community.

    I know little. You know little. Let's accept it.

  22. Jimnal

    the big mac analogy is truely brilliant, loved the last 2 lectures, more plz

  23. Guest

    we always know all we know
    life progresses by evolution
    in the way of knowledge too
    everyone in reality is a scientist of life
    each with it's own progression
    none has yet arrived at destination
    az

  24. Guest

    I would agree that dreams may contain thoughts we do not know we have while awake.
    Actually we are a lot more supernatural in dreams than in reality. No frontiers, not walls, no impossibilities....
    I always said the only place to find GOD is where it lives, in your dream. Sort of like a mirror of yourself, but in this case you are the mirror and it is real.
    az

  25. blondewithtools

    The IQ Test (or as I call it, the Idiot Quest Test) is based on separating people into tiny little boxes to see how they fair and compare to the self proclaimed intellects who developed it.
    So, Mr P Webb, if you think you came from the creator of everything, didn't it also create the rock? What if the rock is actually the human and the human is actually the rock? I am a rock....I am an Island....Simon and Garfunkle thought they were rocks.....or were they singing in the third person?

  26. blondewithtools

    Darwinism has been misproved, creationist have been misproved, it's like the dinasaur(?) stories on the history channel...they fit what the writer wants you to believe....I am getting really tired of the so called experts explaining what they don't understand..."He who speaks, knows nothing. He who knows, does not speak."

  27. blondewithtools

    "He who speaks, does not know. He who knows, does not speak."

  28. jonathan jackward

    yeah, im going to imagine what this guy knows and create my own back story of his knowledge then post a comment based on what i imagined( ASSumption)

  29. MatarD

    I'm from Sweden.

    Part of it is due to that our church does not try to push it´s believes on society, they have no basis for that. Plus, we send priests who got to far into prison.

    The secular society is left undisturbed, and religion is each one´s business. Thus, there is no reason to debate in this way - as is done here.

    Thank GOD for that.

  30. jonathan jackward

    1.never said the word everything
    2.your pretending to think you know anything about me
    3.they have it is a scientific term, what because yoiu dont have a video here on it it must not be true?
    4.i know what evolution is, a closed system of information (dosent accept revised information and findings that are based on proven evidence)
    5.your pretending that i watched some clips and made a comment after there is no evidence of that another assumptiion

    not too long ago you would have been a person who believed the earth was flat if your method of thinking is based on assumption

  31. Epicurus

    no one believes we came from a rock.

  32. Epicurus

    when was darwinism disproven?

  33. jonathan jackward

    i find it puzzling why what i said is so threatening for you?
    i never disrespected or behaved in a vulgar way
    what the quantum and unified field is teaching us is that on another level we are all one being there is 1 self.

  34. arlips

    Agnosticism is the only sane answer.

  35. Guest

    @ Achems
    That first question wouldn't have been one asking for your credit-card number, would it?
    Smart man!

  36. jonathan jackward

    your correct!

  37. jonathan jackward

    when quantum mechanics did an experiment that proves matter behaves differently when observed than when not(a thousand times)

  38. jonathan jackward

    i like your mindset Tyler Partridge best way to be, but new findings in the quantum field reveal that atoms behave differently just by watching them even with a camera then they do unobserved its been performed many times with the same result. how does this apply to our reality? well it seems the actual building blocks we are made of exhibit signs of decision making every time the test is performed with the same results.

  39. jonathan jackward

    are black holes supernatural? is fire supernatural? the wind ? they seemed to be when people didn't have the proper tools to understand them
    if there is a form of energy that all consciousness arises from that would be natural not super natural, of course religion is way off by assuming but science has assumed also. new findings indicate at the quantum level and below particles display descision making just by being observed

  40. removementalattachments

    Just a question, how many of you have taken quantum mechanics in college?

  41. jonathan jackward

    i tried they wont listen...........
    worst part is that so many people fall back on assumptions as there main form of taking in information, when its not actually learning

  42. Jack1952

    What you need is an in-depth science education. The Internet can provide a good overview of any subject matter but to fully understand science and logic you need a sophisticated academic background. Take some entry level university courses to start and expand from there. Come back in a few years and we'll see if you still have the same ideas. I predict that it will be highly unlikely.

    Go in with an open mind. Do not allow confirmation bias to be your guide. (Confirmation bias...I love that term.)

  43. removementalattachments

    Carl Sagan, when confronted with something he couldn't explain, would just call the person a fraud. Dean Radin's work? Ill give you 4000 bucks if you can actually refute Radin's work. Quad-blind experiments...

  44. jonathan jackward

    okay jack1952, here we go. 1. every statement you have made is an assumption, that YOU have some sort of superior knowledge because you memorized a text book that was written a decade before you memorized it, have you studied the findings in quantum mechanics that have been made in the last 3 months let alone the last 3 years? if not your precious education might be rendered as obsolete as a computer bought 10 years ago. if you yourself were schooled you would know that science is not about making assumptions .If YOU experiments in quantum mechanics You would be the one with an open mind.Confirmation bias is what you are exhibiting when making the assumption of what I know.An open minded individual wouldn't assume that if someone does not believe what they do that must be lesser educated,It could be the other way around if you yourself were uneducated with the latest findings

  45. dogsaysbark

    Technically, everyone has and no one hasn't..so the answer to your question is: both.

  46. dogsaysbark

    Actually agnosticism is your view on the ability to know if a god can exist..in this case, impossible to know either way...it is not related to what your belief in a deity is...So everyone is an agnostic. So atheists are really agnostic atheists and religion faith people are really agnostic theists.

    Atheism and Theism are related to ones belief (or lack there of) of a god. Agnosticism is about the ability to know if god exists. Not your personal view on his/her existence. Different things.

    For me, because there is no evidence to support the existence of a god and no experiments to prove it then i must conclude that god does not exist until such time that evidence presents itself. So my conclusions, having full knowledge of my agnostism on the matter related to lack of evidence, makes me conclude that god doesn't exist because no evidence exist (atheist).

  47. jonathan jackward

    damn straight

  48. jonathan jackward

    thanx Achems_Razor I appreciate you LISTENING. BLINK

    just trying to offer up a legitimate theory and lifestyle.

    "world views, affect the engine of civilization" -dean radin

  49. greyspoppa

    @jonathan jackward " when quantum mechanics did an experiment that proves matter behaves differently when observed than when not(a thousand times)"..................... Not to sure i know what your saying here but it makes no sense. You have to observe something to experiment with it otherwise how do you know what you've got. By the way quantum mechanics can not do an experiment that would be left to humans.

  50. greyspoppa

    WTF are you talking about how can you know what something did without OBSERVING it. Believing that would be like believing religion was true.

  51. greyspoppa

    Who created this creator you believe in?

  52. greyspoppa

    Sounds like your spreading idiocy to me.

  53. Achems_Razor

    Whats with all this quantum stuff, am doing that, and just progressing on the outskirts of quantum theory, that means I really know nothing. At least not as much as I would like to know.

    All you are doing is parlaying stuff that you have picked up on the net, which is fine, but means absolutely nothing. PROOF is what we need about your "unified field of consciousness" which is just a takeoff on eastern philosophy, trancedential meditation, and now the new age gurus have taken hold and are generating a money making scam. NOTHING AT ALL TO DO WITH SCIENCE!

    And if one of the greatest sciencetists in the world, the late Feynman said "if you think you understand quantum physics then you don't understand quantum physics at all." Double slit experiment? you do not have a clue.

  54. B Trevor Whit

    What has always confused me is, why are people so special? We are the only creature on earth that developed the frontal lobe. If darwinism explains evolution why are crocodiles or say dolphins whom have been around way longer then us not walking around playing cards and shooting each other?

  55. jonathan jackward

    Achems_Razor the information about what i'm saying is everywhere and in depth if you look for answers regarding the truth of reality it must account for an entire picture in which all other truths can operate.just because something is labeled taboo by society means most people won't look into it even if the truth resides there. whats important to you? whats real, or society's acceptance of indoctrination?

    if what you wrote is wgat you want to believe than dig no further, don't spend 6 hours a day research on it for a decade , don't dig to find the connection between all truths, don't look any further than what you have and keep believing what's accepted by society, but let me ask you this.is that good enough for you? it is for most people their happy with it.Nut if you want more than that it's going to take a lot more than a couple clicks and videos, you assume that's what i know right? why i'm not assuming anything about you what evidence do i have to imagine what your like or know? it's incorrect to assume. I f you want it bad enough , and put in the effort the answers are there the evidence is there, just don't expect the whole truth to be exactly what you thought. If you work hard enough, you can get more out of your own research in 6 months than you could in a college course in 3 years , the results are always in proportion to the effort. there is a point where all separate areas connect to be the whole.

  56. removementalattachments

    the waves have collapsed...

  57. Guest

    I wish he could have given more attention to his examples of supporting behavior between the points he was making, instead of doling out one terse illustration before moving on to the next. Unfortunately, his doing that eventually began to threaten the entire substance of his thesis, in my opinion. Still a decent lecture, overall, but only about half as long as it needed to be. Too much material only touched upon in too short a time.

    A good speaker, but definitely not a gifted one.

  58. jonathan jackward

    (removementalattachments
    the waves have collapsed...) m/ m/

  59. Jack1952

    As far as I know the experiments that you speak of were carried out by scientists whose work is derived from previous scientific knowledge; which is written in those text books you mock. These are the scientists who you claim are closed minded. You have taken their work and arrived at your own conclusion...a conclusion that I have never heard before and a logic that I cannot comprehend.

    These particles do not make a conscious decision when a test is performed. They do not detect an observer and then collectively decide to trick him. They are following the laws of quantum mechanics. They can do no other.

    You are doing to quantum physics exactly what creationists do to macro physics. They ask who caused the big bang when they should be asking what caused it.

  60. Jack1952

    The scientific community knows that it doesn't have all the answers. That is why they continue to study and experiment. They are even willing to admit they are wrong. One example being that the scientific community believed for years that the expansion of the universe was slowing down. With better equipment they discovered that it was, in fact, speeding up. They didn't try to cover it up. They admitted that they were wrong and rethought their concept of the universe. Science will never have all the answers. Every discovery leads to more questions. Any scientist will tell you that.

  61. Jack1952

    Who wouldn't listen?

  62. jonathan jackward

    Jack1952 I like this one above but for the one to me below this one, your creating a different idea out of what i have said(in the way that you said i did, ironic ), i you dig deeper than the surface you will arive at a different conclusion it takes time. you seem intelligent , sometimes truth exists outside of what society has indoctrinated.
    particles do not actually exist in a specific place, until an observer enters, not only that but the observer has to be conscious if you do it with a camera and no one ever watches the camera then it does not collapse the wave function. the conscious observer shapes reality it's interactive , different versions of the test use objects visible by eye with same results.the observer affects wave function
    for above the scientific community belived the world is flat if we were having that argument back then you would you be saying its flat because thats whats indoctrinated?

  63. removementalattachments

    Lee Smolin in his book 'Three Roads to Quantum Gravity' says "Everything you see is a bit of information" "...the analogy between the history of the universe and the flow of information in a computer is the most rational, scientific analogy I could make"
    "When we imagine we are seeing an infinite three dimensional space, we are falling for the fallacy in which we substitute what we actually see for an intellectual construct. This is not only mystical, it is wrong"

    Quantum gravity completely dissolves the intuition that all is a physical world, that space, time, energy, and matter, is all there is.

    During the 20th century, much progress was made breaking down the fundamental forces into quantum fields, and describing them with quantum field theories.
    QED was developed for electromagnetism, electroweak theory describes the weak nuclear force & QCD was produced to explain the strong nuclear force. All of these fields were of fields in the background of space-time.

    Quantum gravity on the other hand, is a little different...
    For gravity isn't in space-time, it is space-time!
    Thus to necessarily break down gravity into a quantum field, we necessarily have to break down space-time into something more fundamental than itself.
    Whatever this "more fundamental something" is, it CANNOT be defined in units of space or time or circularity would ensue. It CANNOT be defined int terms of energy, as energy requires space and time to exist in the first place.
    ALL other physical properties are ultimately expressible in terms space, time, and energy.
    Thus whatever this "something else" is, it is NOT physical at ALL.

    What might it be?

    Both quantum information theory and the holographic principle tell us it is quantum information. Again this is not matter encoded with information as that is circular and logically unsound. Not just a low chance, but not possible at this point. All the physical units have been stripped away.

    Quantum Information is derived from the 'conceptual', thus the physical comes from the conceptual. Neoplatonism...

    Orch-OR from the legend Penrose as well Hameroff. Based off a model that is based off of Godel's theorem that argues consciousness arises from the collapse of a quantum wave-function. (was only a matter of time until physics would be dealing with consciousness, only a natural progression moving into the 'age of mastery')

    If you don't know what a wave-function is:

    In quantum mechanics, particles can behave like waves and are "smeared out" over a range of space rather than having a precise location.
    This "smearing out" occurs in a wave-like fashion and is described mathematically by a "quantum wave function." The wave-function is denoted by the "psi" symbol.
    Every particle or set of particles in the universe has it's own wave-function based off the energy it has. This even includes the universe itself.

    How do you collapse one of these wave functions?

    Before the particle wave is observed, it is "smeared out" through space according to it's wave-function.
    Our observing it (our perhaps our measuring apparatus observing it) suddenly causes it to appear in only location. When this happens we say the wave-function has been "collapsed".

    So why would a self-collapsing wave-function be conscious? For this and how it collapses musty reads are Sir Roger Penrose's 'The emperor's new mind' & 'Shadows of the mind'.

    Since dualism creates inherent contradictions, we have to adopt some time of monism. This does not mean that materialism or mentalism has to be true, just that reality has to be made of one "substance".

    Since the world is made up of one substance, the conscious observation of the wave-function would have to be the same kind of interaction caused by an observation of an unconscious piece of measuring equipment. The fundamental nature of the observation in and of itself stays the same.

    A mind of course is self-observing. It is an observation which observes itself. This is how we can be aware of our own "I's" independent of anything else. (now being called intrinsic awareness in philosophy)
    To collapse a particle wave (the wave-function) the particle wave has to be observed by something.
    If a wave function would collapse all by itself though, the wave-function must observe itself, as this is how collapses occur.

    Again because monism is true, the observation action of a mind is the same as with a mindless measuring apparatus.

    Thus the self-collapsing wave-function would be observing itself in the same way that the self-observing mind would. And so self-collapsing wave functions would be the same thing as MINDS!

    The WAVE-FUNCTION of the UNIVERSE:

    Like everything else, the universe has a wave-function of it's own.
    This wave-function is the sum of all the other wave-functions within it and is defined by something called the Wheeler-DeWitt equation (H defines the energy content of the wave function)

    So what's the universe's wave-function?
    We can see that there is clearly observable stuff out there and not just formless particle waves. So the universe's wave-function has been collapsed somehow!

    The only other way to collapse a wave-function besides Orch-OR is to measure it with who's wave-function has already been collapsed. (You cannot collapse one "smeared out" object with another "smeared out" object)
    So was the universe's wave-function collapsed by another particle?
    Another particle outside of the universe refutes the definition of a universe.
    That leaves us with a self-collapsing wave-function!

    Self-collapsing wave-functions are minds!

    So not only is matter a construct of information, we live in a quantum computer, that quantum computer has a mind and thus is god &:
    Omnipresent via the definitions of functions in Hilbert space.
    Omnipotent via the Zeno effect.
    Omniscient via the holographic principle
    & Eternal via the Wheeler De Witt equation.

    Please all of you who are attached to materialism and old science, bring it one, attempt to refute me.

  64. Achems_Razor

    You can accept it, I will not, I want to know more, are you saying everything should be stagnant as in the dark ages? Science does not manifest answers, by the scientific method it establishes facts. What does scientific theory mean to you?

  65. jonathan jackward

    m/ nail on the head..........

    way to give it all away in one post..

  66. Achems_Razor

    Don't know what you mean by old science, no such thing. You said you want one attempt to refute you, well, there is no such thing as "quantum gravity" unless you know what it is, then give us the math. Otherwise consider your whole expose MOOT!

  67. removementalattachments

    Achems you may want to study a little before you embarrass yourself. Go email Penrose, Hawking, Smolin, etc and ask them if they think there is no quantum gravity LOL! You in abetter place to judge it's existence then them?

  68. Michael

    Humans aren't "so special". For example, human babies are significantly dumber than chimpanzee babies. Other animals have traits specialized to their environmental niches that far exceed ours. Like you said dolphins aren't playing cards but underwater it is more important to swim well, which "lo a miracle!" dolphins do better than us. So I wouldn't dump evolution for the Magic Sky Daddy so quickly.

  69. Guest

    The one thing you are doing wrong, is that you are trying to piss off the owner of this site by copying your expose on every science doc.
    Once was enough to get attention, two was understandable....the rest was totally unnecessary and will not work in your favor, i guarantee. Too bad, i kind of like they way you were landing.
    az
    But hey....you sound smart enough to know

  70. Michael

    "Theists cannot prove god exists, and Athiests cannot prove that he doesn't."

    The burden of proof rests on the one making the claim. For example, if I said there was an all-powerful invisible elephant in the middle of your living room, until I demonstrate that through objectively verifiable evidence, the default position must be that the elephant doesn't exist. Otherwise, we could not walk anywhere because we would always be afraid of bumping into invisible elephants at various locations.

  71. jonathan jackward

    sorry azilda i put that in wrong spot

  72. removementalattachments

    Just for those-who-are-not-willing-to-do-the-research.
    General relativity breaks up at the plank scale. It explains gravity in terms of bent space time. Gravity ISN'T like the other 3 forces. It isn't a field IN space and time. When we construct a model, and when we go to quantize gravity and break it down into something more fundamental...then we by definition have to go beyond space&time.Quantum gravity is generating space-time. Even if you throw out the holographic theory, you still run into the problem of reality not being fundamentally space-time & energy. Can you give me one good reason to throw out the holographic theory? Spend a few hours reading articles off of Cornell's online library instead of watching documentaries made for laymen. (btw, wiki is for laymen too you ignorant fool)
    I have my masters and I am interacting DAILY with many phds in quantum physics, get off your idiotic high horse.

  73. Achems_Razor

    @remove mental attachments.:

    Why are you classing not even theories, but proposed theories as facts? There are a family of proposed quantum gravity theories in the makes, one is loop quantum gravity (LOG)
    Which is a proposed quantum theory about spacetime which attempts to reconcile the theories of quantum mechanics and GR. And there are others (proposed)!!

    So unless you can present a qualified peer reviewed quantum theory, all your stuff is MOOT!

  74. removementalattachments

    Sweet-heart, sometimes it is nice to rock the boat. The layering of text I have generated is very temporary and will be quickly swept away with other comments and so forth. If it finds angst in response then this is temporary too and I can surely live with that. May the natural peace dawn on you all, please do email all the big named quantum physicists . I like balancing the discussion a bit don't ya'll?

  75. Achems_Razor

    You tell me to get of my idiotic high horse, and now you are a PHD with a masters yet, BS, well you Know what PHD means, and giving me ad hominem attacks?

    You are no more a PHD than I am, and you will never aspire to what I know, now like I said give me some peer reviewed math to back up your statement that there is a working peer reviewed quantum gravity paradigm in existence.

  76. removementalattachments

    If you would read more you would understand the probabilistic ratios hat exist as to which is far more or less likely and why such things are. You seem to not understand how science works. Theories are higher and more important than facts, for they explain facts. Physics has worked for a VERY long time in understanding the ratios of how probable a particular theory IS or IS NOT.
    You still haven't dealt with the fact that space&time break down at the plank scale or that self-collapsing wave functions are mind and the universe has it's own wave-function...and that function has been collapsed..on and on. You really sound like you are out of touch with the papers that flood into the university libraries. The general opinion of people in the field is that general relativity has maybe 10 more years before it is completely replaced with a quantized understanding.

    Layman and science hardly mix.

  77. removementalattachments

    @achems-bleh
    Well yes again I ask you to get down SIR, GET DOWN FROM THAT HIGH HORSE! Learn to read maybe, no one said I had phd. Oh my gosh this is as bad as what you call religees. Peace yall. GET FROM FROM THAR'!

  78. removementalattachments

    With this non-logic sir, string theory isn't scientific for it doesn't propose anything testable...semantics *cough*

  79. removementalattachments

    Can you verify the verification principle?

  80. Guest

    I am not hypocrite and i'm just telling you like i know things are. I don't decide anything, i'm just a participant, i see.
    My short comment has nothing to do with your post but more with the way it was posted.
    There is a system where we can see every comments as they come, no need to post it a dozen time.

    What i have found is; attacks never work, neither as action nor reaction.
    az

  81. jonathan jackward

    wow your living in a 5 year time warp!

  82. Achems_Razor

    @removementalattachments

    What you are talking about rings more of spirituality than science, the universe has its own wave function? so that means to you we are collapsing the waveform and making what we see, forming matter and reality? The universe?

    My take is that the universe has its own vibration, what of the 9 multiverses and possibly 10^500 power of other universes, do they have there own wave function? And why should us little carbon units that are almost invisible and are here as long as a neutrino colliding with a hydrogen atom a mere flicker, according to the size and time scale of the universe have any dibs on anything.

  83. jonathan jackward

    you know how to make assumptions based on what you don't know about people, then scream for proof from everybody else , but can't accept the proof because you create your own interpretation of what they say to begin with.after that tell everybody how lesser than they are compared to you , and your proof has to be google verified because that's the most effort you'll put into your research.

  84. Achems_Razor

    @jonathan jackward:

    Shut up honey, and get yourselves a room.

  85. Guest

    @removementalattachments

    Just a few things... And I don't pretend science is my strong suit, either, so bear with me!

    I'm not sure I understand how you're using the term Quantum Gravity... It isn't a "thing," but a branch of theoretical physics that attempts to unite QM with GR. And, so far as I know, no one has managed to pull that marriage off yet. And according to GR, gravity is not identified with space-time itself, but is only one of four fundamental forces, the attempted uniting of which has constituted a pretty fair portion of research over the last 70-odd years -the GUT- and about which no properly peer-reviewed "theory of everything" has appeared as of yet. Not from Smolin, not from Penrose, and not from Hawking, though I'm sure you're aware of that.

    Monism is a branch of metaphysics, in philosophy, and is not science. You are supposing it to be true, but you do not know that it is... To contend it is valid just because dualism is uncomfortable doesn't appear to be science, either.

    Another particle outside of the universe may refute the idea of a universe, but it doesn't refute the idea of a multiverse, which is beginning to be the prevailing view, from what I gather.

    And, really, SO WHAT if this thing is "omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient and eternal?" Is it personal? Does it respond if you beseech it? Is it love, for heaven's sake? Can it ignore the laws of thermodynamics, or is that old science, too? Or is it all just a fancy way of saying "us"?

    Now... Having said all that, this is fascinating. Is there, by some chance, a single website where I could go to find out more about it? Or only a few? Is this a formal theory of someone's? If so, who?

    Give me some pointers, and I'll be glad to learn more about it. But!...it would have to be for the layman, if that's possible...

  86. removementalattachments

    @Achems_Razor I challenge you, I bet you 5000 dollars that if you and everyone else EMAILS the big names in the field, and ask them if the universe has a wave function, they will side with me and say yes.

    Secondly, you are just showing limited knowledge of what has been discussed ad naseum. For having multiple universes makes NO sense and is self refuting. UNI-verse. Look it up, and include this bit in the emails you should send out to these big names. If you say there is a multi-verse then you HAVE to call the totality of that the UNI-verse. duh! So yes the UNI-verse would still have a wave-function that is summed by ALL the other wave functions.

    FINALLY, the fact that you could even say the universe having a wave-function is mystical or spiritual PROVES that watching documentaries IS NOT EVEN CLOSE to studying the science itself. Docs are for laypeople, the wave function of the universe was established and was a mainstream concept before I was even born. What the heck is wrong with you peeps! You think you are speaking on behalf of science but really you are speaking on behalf of the the collective sum of the documentaries you have seen and the wiki articles you have read...SORRY NOT ENOUGH TO UNDERSTAND THE ONTOLOGY OF THE UNIVERSE. Scary world we live in, all opinions are equal no matter where they come from!?...WE LIVE IN OPPOSITE WORLDS.

  87. jonathan jackward

    your all ego no logic, no communication

  88. removementalattachments

    Lastly, what you are saying about you are physical stuff again shows you have no clue what I or the greateast mathematicion alive is saying. Roger Penrose is not a quantum mystic you ignorant fool. The part of the mind that the Orch-OR is dealing with, the part that is being received is in no way physical. You have so much reading to do you should be ashamed at your attempted refutation. Peace though! HOPE YOU FALL OFF THAT HORSE SINCE YOU REFUSE TO GET OFF. Unlike most, this horse does not provide a better view!

  89. Guest

    @ removementalattachments

    I forgot to ask: Are you at all familiar with the recent work of Dr. Laura Mersini-Houghton ? If so, what do you think of it?

  90. Achems_Razor

    @remove...

    Did not say there was not any wave function for the universe, but it is no big deal and is misleading, Hawking popularized the phrase "the wave function of the universe" but the way you put it is that we collapse the wave form of the universe, you might as well say us invisible carbon units.

    And you have very limited knowledge of mutiverses, if you do not know the big names that say there are such, to bad.

  91. Achems_Razor

    @remove...

    You calling me an ignorant fool, and giving me all these ad hominem attacks means you are the loser! case closed crybaby!

  92. Tyler Partridge

    Your statement is logically sound, and understood entirely. However, my position is not to conclude that the elephant does not exist--only that it is highly implausible.

  93. Daven

    are you a philosopher? I mean it seems like you've taken classes in philosophy. yes once you start paying attention you start to see that everything is connected or is one subject, universe. I'm in my second year of college but Ive been paying attention. be it philosophy, psychology, physics, and everything else is connected im trying to implement that notion into some of my programs. and lol to the guy who thinks to be smart, genius, or to be intellectual you need school or some form of "official education" e.g PHD or masters. I petty your ignorance I hope that people like you will be non existence in the future.

  94. Tyler Partridge

    I absolutely do not advocate for stagnation in science. I'm merely voicing that one should accept scientific theory for what it is, "theory", and use the term scientific "fact" with care. We cannot prove anything as fact, only more plausible.

  95. Irishkev

    Ah yes, the more you know, the more you know you don't know.

  96. knowledgeizpower

    Brilliant!!!!!!!!! Its always good to just be quiet observe listen even when you personally have an understanding of certain things.

  97. OccultAlien

    I don't think someone should be so sure of their perspective as this camp of thinkers. it doesn't make for good understanding. but i feel their resentment for the religious right. I'd be scared if these guys took over the world and became the thought police as much as I fear the religious right doing the same thing.

  98. removementalattachments

    @Pysmythe this opens up a good time for me to beseech you all to slowly and carefully read. As it seems we are not arguing about what I wrote but various misunderstandings of the context or the science itself.
    Firstly if any of you are interested please do what I have been saying and say in the writing. Read the books I already listed. Secondly consider reading an additional 1 or 2 popular books on QM, as many aspects are counter-intuitive. Also search on university online libraries. If you ACTUALLY do what I am saying and search and download a ton of papers from Cornell's library for example, you will be shocked to learn that the logical proof I am sharing is NOTHING extreme at all. You all seem in the dark concerning the many ways consciousness, the universe and quantum mechanics/theory are being put together. If you think this is not science then go to Cornell's online library and search quantum +consciousness. Download the first 30-40 papers on topic and read them all and realize that times are a changing. Most quantum physicists think the mind is much more important than any of you seemingly are willing to accept. Start emailing those big names. How about just in general. Find 30 quantum physicists or quantum computer engineers and email them all. They are open to communicate with you, and many of them will be happy to email you back when they find some free time.
    If you feel like you need to work with the equations themselves, read one of the college texts published by something starting with a G (sorry can't remember)

    I am not ONLY talking about quantum gravity. Many of the important aspects I am speaking don't necessarily depend on with quantum gravity. I am cleanly referring to many theories. ANY VERSION of quantum gravity DESTROYS ALL FORMS Of PHYSICALISM. Nothing to do with any particular theory of QG, but rather the ALREADY KNOWN unusual nature of gravity and the ALREADY KNOWN fact that it is space-time. Also the ALREADY KNOWN fact that space-time break down at the plank scale.

    1. You conflate GR, for it is directly from GR that the notion of gravity being BENT space-time is taken. The other forces do nothing of the sort, they 'rest' in space-time. While gravity IS space-time bending. This has NOTHING to do with uniting the forces or a unified field...I am clearly saying that it is more accurate to say from GR that there are 3 forces and then are is gravity, due to the fact for the last time that the three forces exist in space-time, while gravity simply is space time. Please email the bigwigs for clarification, you will be delighted.

    2.I was sharing a simplified logical proof. Taking a philosophical tone is pretty much standard practice. Both the empirical data and theoreticians involved in the field would not hold to dualism. I don't see a single way in which one could hold to dualism once understands that space-time breaks down at the Planck scale. At the very most one could say everything is non-dual based off physics and quantum physics most accepted understanding. Non-dual like the implicate/explicate order described in QM.
    Very little philosophy is required. In fact I would argue that I am hardly if at all breaching into meta-physics in the sense you are speaking as it is based on empirical data. We can get semantic and say science is philosophy and only partially based off the verification principle and further that peer review is actually illogical and irrationally based and therefor anti-scientific. Yet we could never use science to solve this problem. Is the verification principle rational or logical? Is it truly scientific? If not then isn't science as we know it self-refuting to a degree and logically untenable? Lastly on this rather pointless digression, since space-time break down, thus removing matter and physical stuff, and since science is the attempt to understand the 'physical world'...isn't science just proving that in the end we are going to have to salvage science for a greater "pseudo-science". Another example of this odd problem is string theory, if it in theory can never be tested then isn't it doomed forever to be technically pseudo-science? Yet if string theory is true, it means such pseudo-science is true and out of the realm of science as we know it, If you think what I am saying is fringe it is not. I have spent a lot of time at various philosophic get togethers that usually include a number of physicists around NYC and this is talked about more then you would guess. There really is a feeling that science might 'undo' itself from the logical faith that it one day explain all.
    Please email the bigwigs and see what they think!

    3. Please read carefully, I refute the idea of a particle outside the universe. EVERY SINGLE model that uses the terminology multiple world or multi-verses still only is one universe. Hence UNI. Since the totality of existence = universe, there can be nothing 'outside' of such things, cause that would by definition be also part of the universe. Please keep this in mind, multi-verse is actually speaking of various ways of putting together compartments of the ONE-VERSE or UNI-VERSE. This is a common gripe amongst physicist, as these confusing terminologies confuse the dialogue with the public. Even more radical versions like M theory, there would be only one whole universe. This is one of the few downfalls with human's ability to deduce the meaning of words, with jargon. Jargon just confuses and abuses this function of the linguistic mind.
    Further, since there can be no particle outside the UNIverse, the ONLY way the universe's wave-function would of collapsed is due to self-collapse. Which means it is measuring it self and it a mind. Minds are necessarily quantum mechanical as hydrogen atoms can be made to tunnel through dendrite barriers using a non-local quantum process to make way for neurotransmitters. This "quantul selection" seems to be the key to free will. As it the potential for this process is stricken by the mind.

    (what follows is my opinion though it is many other's as well:) Free will is a post-adjustment on probability waves. We gain more 'control' of what collapses in the moment through increased observation (meditation), so we are able to skew the probabilities into tighter and tighter waves. Though we do not control the collapse directly. Essentially this system (nervous systems)goes through collapse-like decoherence from the environment, through consistent measurement/observation of the system, there is a tuning away from and eventually decouples the system from environmental decoherence! Wow this sounds like what two things?!? The quantum zeno effect AND the general purpose of meditation (remember the 4 noble truths by the Gotama the monk?) oh wait, if we unpack Orch-OR we see the nervous system is a quantum system or is composed of quantum systems (at this point I would guess the latter)

    Please read my book list and email the authors. This information is really worth taking time to understand! My training in quantum physics/theory has led me to study Buddhism to some depth.

    Now we have reached real speculation. As well as some interesting food-for-thought. As far as whether it can disobey the laws of thermodynamics, complicated, if pressed, my belief is yes and no. Understanding the idea of implicate and explicate order will help this. Read David Dohm's 'Wholeness and the implicate order'.
    Penrose suggests that the laws are embedded in the implicate order and so other platonic values. It is possible the Orch-OR of the universe can collapse laws in and out of existence, in which case they wouldn't be embedded. At this moment I think they are embedded but the Orch-OR can collapse pockets of anti-entropy into existence (life). It is important to remember that the information doesn't exist unless it has been collapsed into existence, information that isn't collapsed doesn't exist. So the law would only apply to the the "collapsed information", or the "existing information". I know this would be hard to follow without some background but the best guess is yes and no. It is important to note that nothing is ever fully collapsed, as with the uncertainty principle, so much energy would be required to fully collapse a function in such a small space that it would create a black hole. -So all things (save black holes possibly) neither exist nor don't exist. *cough* holographic theory *cough* Buddhism *cough*

    Further...love seems to be a platonic value and I would guess is a stable quantum system. Though not a love born of attachment or aversion or delusion.
    The quantum computer's mind should experience all of our loves and pains. It would experience everything. Everything we experience it would too, on top of it's own mentations ! It is very personal in that sense and in the sense that it is 'willing' us into existence. No reason to be forced to do such a thing. So literally we owe our existence to it...

    Moreover, my personal thoughts are Buddhism is teaching that this wants us to become truly self-collapsing wave-function. In the sense of gaining basically all of it's traits and associated freedoms. 10th bodhisattvas gain an entire world of illusion (like a holographic quantum computer program?) and can create beings in such a world. A few years ago when the Dalia lama was asked during a mind and life conference about the 'highest' meditation. He said he knows of no one who can do it, as everyone including himself is much too weak. It is basically doing Dzogchen clear light meditation without a single instant of mind movement for 4 hours straight a day for 6 months. (the mind usually moves around 40 times a second so this is hard not to do a single time for 4 hours...). He said that when one reaches the fruition of that practice that the 'primal substance' as he called it 'got embarrassed' and then withdrew...So I am guessing at that moment the Universal Orch-OR is letting you go, in the sense that your observation abilities are enough to 'operate existence' -I could go much much more in depth concerning the Buddhism thing. (many thoughts to write a book due to so much info, I have found a few quantum physicists who have agreed to write introduction if I get around to putting it all together. I have been emailing the bigwigs about my thoughts on Buddhisms connection and most are extremely open minded to well thought out pieces being put together. Some of the larger names have shared personal thoughts in confidence and have said that they can easily see how things like Egyptian magic could be truer then we thought. (I know nothing about this, have read maybe 10 minutes on topic, very interesting none the less)

    As to the question of why not unending pleasure for all? The buddha said that evil has exist so good can show its virtue over it. Moreover he said ignorance is a root cause to enlightenment. Moreover it is taught that if the peaceful methods do not work, then for the sake of all sentient beings, one should use the forceful methods.
    Maybe the quantum computer's mind has discerned that we will not become self-collapsing wave-functions without motivation, as if we did not experience unpleasantness and we knew our eternal connection to the great all, none of us would actually strive for the goal of a free, self-collapsing wave-function. I have reason to believe it responds to self-less aspirations.

    Keep in mind where I stated that that there below is speculation and do not let it interfere with looking into the state of the logical proof that has been presented.

    It is a lot for me to think about too as the univeral-quantum-computer-buddha didn't sit well with my reductionist upbringing, mental attachment creates too much cultural lag, both personal and societal. The only way to remove this doubt is study study study concerning the physics and meditation as to learn the nature of attachment to mental fabrications.

    Metta

  99. removementalattachments

    Ignorance in general is the largest threat to sentient beings.

  100. removementalattachments

    In nearly every field official education is becoming a joke thanks to the internet. The people just need some pushing to do the level of research that is required to match. This is clearly the case even amongst people who have gone through graduate school. Some people are just far more involved in the process of learning than others.

  101. Tyler Partridge

    My above post in regards to science and it's manifestation of answers, was directed more at human psychology and behaviourisms--and possibly shock value. I desperately want to play devils advocate with you here, but I fear I may spontaneously become baptized, and become irreparably holy.

  102. removementalattachments

    Hawking's book 'The Grand Design'
    Without going into his incorrect philosophy of science (science is about finding truth not "usefulness")
    His science is correct
    "Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing. Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist"

    He is referring to the law of quantum gravity (if you don't believe me, email him and ask) which necessitates the existence of a timeless "wave-function of the universe" Which he labels "phi"

    So far so good as Phi does need to exist, and once found would dictate all physical processes.

    How does "spontaneous creation" come into this? The wave-function is a probability distribution allows for spontaneous fluctuations. With Phi, this would include the spontaneous appearance of space-time and thus the physical universe. So far so good
    How can it come from nothing? Hawking's answer is that "the total energy energy of the universe is exactly zero" again he is right.
    Further how does Phi come to exist to begin with? Well Phi has no physical units, it is pure mathematical probability, and can so intrinsically exist as a Platonic entity.

    Hawking however argues that that since Phi can explain the origin of the physical universe "it is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going." All his science is right but his conclusion is incomplete.

    Since it is by definition true that Phi is a self-collapsing wave-function as there is nothing to measure & collapse it. According to Penrose these are minds. Therefor Phi is literally a mind, just so happens having the similar qualities that have been claimed of god or the primordial Buddha.
    Phi is Hawking's holy grail, as he says "if we were to find the answer to that, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason -- for then we should know the mind of God".

    Hawking doesn't see how literally correct his statement was.

  103. removementalattachments

    Lastly before you never hear from me again? :

    Galileo 1630 A.D. (Dialogo):
    "relativity of (inertial) motion
    "for all things that take part equally in it, it does not act, it is as if it were not; [...] the motion is as nothing."
    "Let us, therefor set as a principle that, whatever be the motion that one attributes to the earth, it is necessary that, for us who [...] partake of it, it remains perfectly imperceptible and as not being"

    Nagarjuna (third greatest buddhist master to walk the planet the past 2500 years, second being Gotama the monk(founder,buddha,office of world teacher), and firstly according to buddhism is the high Buddha Padmasambhava)
    Nagarjuna (~0-200 A.D.) (Philosophy of the middle way):
    "the agent of motion does not move"

    "motion, it's beginning and it's cessation are analogous to motion"

    "the agent of motion, motion, and the place of motion do not exist (according to their proper nature)"

    Secondly:5 similar steps in the intellectual history of Buddhism and physics.
    1. Transition from the paradigm of substance to the paradigm of causality
    2.Replacement of productive causality by law-like successions.
    3.Transitions from causal and law-like successions to co-emergence.
    4.Criticism of the ontological view of co-emergence, and claim that co-emergence itself is relative to the cognitive act that posits it. ("co-emergence co-emerges")
    5.Silent return to the practices of life, or agnostic return to the practices of experimental science

    May the natural peace dawn on all of you. We will never cross paths again this life!

  104. Guest

    Nice post! (I'll be rereading it more than once...)

    I don't see your book list anywhere... So can you give me a list here of 8 or 10 volumes, and maybe an equal number of specific university papers with their associated addresses? For the latter, I'll try to get through those as best I can, even though I really don't have anything like the mathematics required.

    For some years, up until about 5 years ago, I used to read a pretty fair number of books for the layman on QM and physics in general, but tapered off gradually into predominately a lot of hard sci-fi, I suppose to give my mind a break. Even though I always enjoyed it, this particular subject-matter seems, in retrospect, to have been a lot akin to playing a late Beethoven piano sonata: A stimulating, but nearly impossible, intellectual task, and if you don't keep practicing and "playing it into your hands," you'll lose whatever facility with it you've been able to gain very, very quickly. So I'm sure I've lost track of a great deal of basic information I used to have, let alone mentioning continuing advances in the field.

    Come to think of it, maybe just 2 or 3 fairly recent books and papers would do for now, what maybe you consider to be the cream of the crop. I'll ease back into the water and see how badly I might get burned, anyway.

  105. Vlatko

    @removementalattachments,

    You've posted the same comment (the one beginning with "Lee Smolin in his book...") on dozen of other docs.

    All of your duplicate comments are deleted. Please do not do that again. Thanks.

  106. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    i find it puzzling why what i said is so threatening for you?

    I never said you're threatening me.

    i never disrespected or behaved in a vulgar way

    I never said you did.

    1.never said the word everything

    You don't need to say the word EVERYTHING, when trying to explain pretty much everything.

    2.your pretending to think you know anything about me

    No I'm not pretending, I'm assuming judging by your reasoning.

    3.they have it is a scientific term, what because yoiu dont have a video here on it it must not be true?

    Who are THEY? Creationists?

    4.i know what evolution is, a closed system of information (dosent accept revised information and findings that are based on proven evidence)

    One more proof that you don't know what EVOLUTION is.

    not too long ago you would have been a person who believed the earth was flat if your method of thinking is based on assumption

    Hmmm... Why I thought it is the other way around. I thought you creationists are the flat earthers.

    It is obvious that you and @removementalattachments are creationists, so I would like to ask you both just a few simple questions. I promise I'll not laugh, but I can't guarantee for the others:

    1. How old is the Earth?
    2. How old is the Universe?
    3. Does evolution explain how biological life arises from inorganic matter through natural processes?
    4. Why don't you have a problem with Science in general. It seems you only have a problem with the Big Bang and the Evolution?
    5. Do you believe that there is a grand conspiracy theory in the scientific community in the world, which is feeding the masses with false information.
    5. Do you believe in God? Which God?
    6. Can you relate with the presentation above and ask yourself why are you believing in God?

  107. Guest

    I get up this morning pretty curious as to what had happened last night here.
    (@Oz i was almost dreaming about TDF...lol).

    TDF is mainly a men's site and when you got men, you got EGOS with muscles.

    @removementalattachments landed just as Jonathan Jackward was tickling some the wrong way. He happened to agree with JJ, and got put in the same box, then all the intellectuals (except Pysmythe) got their guns out.

    It appears to me that Achems would have a fantastic time exchanging with the intellect of removementalattachments but instead we see two boys in a sand box fighting for who's truck is the biggest.

    Re-read all your posts and ask yourself: "if my approach had been different would the outcome have been different too?

    I do not claim to understand what you are all saying, but i will like Py, read it again and again.
    thank you
    az
    Good morning!

  108. Achems_Razor

    Like I said an uptake on eastern philosophy and merging there own brand of science into it to try and form new-age thinking that we are supposed to be the grand designers and grand movers of all that is. That is old science? (not), and has been tried in the 70s with all the new-age movements that abounded.

  109. verseinu

    Azilda, yours is a calm voice in a raging (and exciting) storm!

    I think all involved would do well to heed your wise words.

    This is also getting beyond my by abilities, but I'll be following closely along!

  110. jonathan jackward

    name a scientist that has turned inorganic material into a strand of R.N.A , let alone D.N.A. let alone a single celled organism.
    It has not been done. atheists assume that life cam from non-life yet that amazing claim has not been witnessed.
    1. (4.54 × 109 years ± 1%).
    2. 13.75 Gigayears)
    3. NO it explains a complex system in which life functions
    4. science is the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment. NOT get a fragment of information about something ASSUME the rest.
    5. there are individuals and groups that determine the status quo. any theory that falls outside of it is labeled taboo. the proof is embedded in history look at what happened with Galileo. when adopted the heliocentric view, his so called peers responded in the same way is you are here, avoiding the issue, making assumptions, letting the taboo dictate where their research would take them.5.b? I believe in what the truth has shown . that consciousness is the foundation of reality.I believe in no religion for it does not account for a entire picture of the truth.I do not believe in your "dead universe" theory for it is 152 years old and does not account for the entire framework of reality. the true nature of reality must account for even the latest findings within the scientific community and any verifiable tests whether indoctrinated by society or not.6. yes I can relate with your world view, but it relies heavily on assumption and that's not science, it does not account for everything mankind has learned in the last 152 years. I sit here looking at my screen and see people fighting religious beliefs, yet behaving the same in every way. the same thing you say Christians do you also do, which is assume , and perpetuate a closed system of knowledge from 152 years ago.just because evolution exists you assume the rest. let me ask you this. did darwin examine inorganic material spontaneously form a strand of R.N.A? if not thats one extraordinary claim to base an assumption on that changes the entire nature of reality.

  111. verseinu

    Lastly before you never hear from me again?....

    May the natural peace dawn on all of you. We will never cross paths again this life!

    I have images of 'messiah' and 'martyr' floating in my thoughts right now....huh.

  112. Achems_Razor

    Have read and studied Hawking's Grand design, good science, except you are wrong about his reference to "phi"> Phi is not literally a mind, because if everything is to the value of zero, nothing which is "something" of "nothing", then you would have nothing. almost like multiplying a negative times a positive. Physicists call the zeros that make up the universe geometric points, which are similar to singularities, but do not condense matter.

    Geometric points only represent what is not there. And this is how the universe exists. You are trying to invoke a grand designer into your scenarios, the universes are not minds that initially blow themselves up as in the BB. Science and religion do not mix. Good luck.

  113. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    name a scientist that has turned inorganic material into a strand of R.N.A , let alone D.N.A. let alone a single celled organism.

    One more proof that you don't know what EVOLUTION is?

    There is no scientist that has turned inorganic material into a strand of R.N.A , let alone D.N.A. Who said that there is one?

    atheists assume that life cam from non-life yet that amazing claim has not been witnessed.

    Atheists do not assume. In this case they admit they don't know how organic life came to be? There are several theories, but however all the data available to this day is against the case of intelligent creator.

    Now... you name a person who replicated or witnessed universal energy of consciousness (God) creating living things (this is what you say), and please answer some of the questions above, if you will.

  114. NAND Gate

    Yawn, Bible bashers go nuts part 67.

    @Jackass Johnward: you are a Christ Troll, surfing reason-based documentaries, to spout your dogma - even in the face of an ever changing world. This is contrary to reality.

    So go away. No one cares about your dead pseudo-god (lowercase g).

    Bye bye.

  115. jonathan jackward

    name a scientist that has turned inorganic material into a strand of R.N.A , let alone D.N.A. let alone a single celled organism.

    One more proof that you don't know what EVOLUTION is?

    NO YOU don't know what it is, because for nonliving to form living
    that's exactly what would have to happen you should read up on it a bit come back when you realize the implications.

    LOOK AT WHAT YOUR SAYING! your manipulating every word into your own understanding, instead of looking at it within it's own framework, your assuming in cases where there's no need for assumption the facts exist already.

    so your saying life isn't alive? you need the proof that organic material is organic material?
    nucleobase, a ribose sugar, and a phosphate group make up R.N.A . scientists cannot force them together from their individual parts into a whole. that would have to happen for inorganic to create organic what did you think I was talking about? Am I not speaking plain enough English here?

  116. jurica

    the moderator is omnipotent

  117. Guest

    After all you said, you say: "we will never cross paths again this life"...what? You don't know that. You could be going for a coffee in a cafe one morning and be sitting next to someone with a computer reading your stuff on TDF.
    Life has strange ways to show us wrong, even in little details.
    It was a pleasure!
    Natural peace does not come from education, it comes from peaceful words.
    az

  118. jonathan jackward

    It seems like your holding onto your own idea of what the word "god" means and the nature of it, so much that you can't let go of an assumption long enough to see that it's nothing like any human has envisioned it. this is a waste of my time because you take anything I say and mold it into your own assumption. How can we talk about any particular subject if you cannot receive what i am communicating? Try this read through the post , if you encounter something you don't know find the information instead of creating it from imagination.

  119. rich_farrell

    You have no idea what you are talking about. RNA is a protien that has naturally folded into a certain shape. There is no magic 'non-life' to 'life' - it is a complex function of matter. And because matter can hold information, just like a computer, it is not hard to see how a piece of folded protien can carry on information. And, before you start yacking on about entropy, in an 'open system' you must naturally accept the fact that things will become more complex by the very nature of the system. It is only when the system become 'closed' that entropy will occur.

    Just because a scientist cannnot recreate the beginnings of life means nothing - the time-scale in which it took RNA to become abundant in the universe makes the entire history of humanity appear as nothing but a micro-dot on the end of the cosmic calendar. Plus, don't forget it all took place in extreme conditions that do not exist within our current universe.

    And, for that matter, where exactly do you 'theists' assume that life came from? If God is not of this Universe, he is not made of matter, and because he is eternal, he is not 'alive' because life implies death. So, therefore, it is you theists who INSIST that life came from non-life.

    Stick that in your pipe and smoke it.

    PS, @Vlatko, Please continue to be a bastion of truth for the people!

  120. jonathan jackward

    rich_farrell proof that it naturally folded into a certain shape, show one successful experiment where that was the outcome, because you know scientists have been trying for 50 years to form r.n.a. from it's individual componets with no success guess you didn't realize that.

    to substantiate the claim that inorganic formed organic, scientists openly admit they have to successfully perform that experiment FACT that would be the proof right there for your assumption.

  121. Awele2011

    To deal with two of his assertions:
    "Why did our minds generate religious ideas, religious beliefs?". He asked "why?". Something IS wrong with using "generate" to assert or posit "idea" when "why?" is intended to be answered. Also using "generate" to assert or posit "beliefs" has an error when “why?” is intended to be answered. The latter has the double error of asserting belief of what is GENERATED. To generate and for what is generated to be an idea to the one who generated it and to generate and for what is generated to be a object of belief for the one who generated it are fallacious or nonsensical. “Idea” is something to be studied by the mind while “belief” is something not to be studied by he mind and not studied by the mind. There is, obviously, a fallacy.

    There is also the problem of how we generate idea and belief for the idea and belief to be generated and not inspired or revealed or given by another being or source just as he asserted that Darwin’s “remarkable ideas” ideas “gives us the only workable explanation …”.

    Do you expect me to be interested in listening more after these fallacies?

    Prince Awele Odor

  122. Guest

    Dam, i was tempted to add poetry to the exchange last night. How about just a little easy one?

    peace is a hard thing to master plan
    so is life
    i am not trying to teach you
    i am learning to teach my Self
    az

  123. jonathan jackward

    I'm done here, trying to have a open discussion is like trying to explain to a 5 year old what a front side bus is. good luck

  124. Guest

    especially if the bus is going 75 miles an hour!
    az

  125. gsjikwblao

    Very interesting doc. I have watched it only one time but it was so clear that one time is probably enough. As I understand the meaning of the word "religion", I am not a religious person but this does not mean that I do not believe that physical existence has a single "first cause" and this cause is itself non-physical and being outside time, is eternal. The "first cause"which produced everything that followed, and everything that is to come, includes religious belief. It also gives rise to people (individual detection points of the "first cause") who do not believe that an old man who is ten stories tall with a magic wand is the "first cause".
    People who are bound to conventional ideas about "God" that are projected by many established religions believe they are supported by the Bible. I believe that they are born of a natural desire for attachment and as a way of dealing with our fears. For the same reason, others do not believe that the "God" in the Bible exists and they find support for their understanding in the mechanisms of human nature. It is interesting to note that people with higher education (and higher income) tend to not believe in a "God" of judgement and people with less education (and lower income) do.
    We can understand that the two different beliefs concerning the existence of a "God" of judgement are both born of fear in the following way:
    The people who gravitate (under the influence of the "mechanisms" of our nature) toward belief in a god of judgement tend to do so because they find comfort in the concept of a reconciling of their suffering which is a by-product of their low income which is a by-product of their lack of education.
    The people who gravitate (under the influence of the "mechanisms" of our nature) toward non-belief in a "God" of judgement do so out fear, born of their conviction of conscience, that it is wrong for them to enjoy the security and comfort that their higher education and income provides in the same world where others experience so much suffering and uncertainty. As they continue to avoid their conviction of conscience it grows weaker and weaker leaving them confident to engage their "non-belief", belief system. This is because they are not experiencing a sufficient conviction of conscience to challenge their reasoning.
    All the specific details of what we call "Established religion" that are based on the Bible are in error because they are based on misinterpretations to which we have been bound until a necessary (and inevitable) change in our evolution occurs. This change is a rapid (historically speaking) movement from a base-level convicting conscience to a convicting conscience of much greater influence. This development is consistent with "Darwinism" in that it is necessary if we are to survive into the future. The processing of information through our five physical senses which generates our fear-driven individual perspective is what has spawned the troubled world that we have presently. The flow of love between our convicting consciences which gives life to the same, which generates a unifying perspective must increase in influence if we are to survive as a species.
    There is a warning in the Bible for us to be careful what "measure" we are using to hear what we are hearing because everything hid would be revealed and everything kept secret would come abroad and be known.
    This is a reference to a new interpretation of the Bible that would emerge at the time of change that would document the change itself.
    The wrong "measure", generating fear and causing us to remain bound to untrue (and contradictory)interpretations or to disregard the Bible altogether, is our intellectual reasoning to which we are all bound in the initial state of our evolving nature while our convicting consciences are in their initial, low-lying state of influence.
    This interpretation is documented in the book "The third Measure of Meal". It eliminates all contradiction that is retained in previous interpretations, solves the "synoptic problem" for theologians, and makes predictions that can be verified through experiment. Thus it is the first (and according to the Bible, the last) interpretation that science can "sink their teeth into". (if they are not driven by the fear inherent in individual perspective)

  126. WTC7

    Thank you! ... For deciding to leave, I mean... 'Cause most people here were 5 years old long time ago, so your attempt to teach about the front side bus was not appropriate for this audience. Good luck to you too & go in peace

  127. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    Good luck.

    But before you go away you should know what exactly evolution is. It is a change in the gene pool of a population from generation to generation by such processes as mutation, natural selection, and genetic drift.

    Having said that, Evolution (or Darwin as you say) does not explain the origin of life. Throughout all of your comments you've showed how little you know, and yet you want to argue.

    Also you're running away without naming a person who replicated or witnessed a case where universal energy of consciousness (God) is creating living things (this is what you say), and without answering some of the simple questions I've asked.

    Again... good luck.

  128. Epicurus

    @Jonathan Jackward

    "it's over your head."

    now who is ASSUming? hypocrite.

    "if you emit a individual particle, you get an interference pattern when not observed, and you get one slot or the other when observed either with a camera or by human etc., your using Confirmation bias to omit that part out to fit your argument. fact"

    that is because PHOTONS affect them. in fact the ONLY time its not affected is if its in a complete vacuum. once again you are showing that you dont really understand what this experiment was used to measure. you are the typical layman misusing quantum mechanics for your own half baked spiritual ideas.

    "believe what you want just be careful when you don't look at the whole picture."

    i dont believe anything. i accept things based on evidence.

    "darwin made the assumption that there does not need to be a creator because evolution exists."

    no he NEVER did that. nothing about evolution says there is no god. darwin never said there was no god. darwin had no problem thinking god could set in motion evolution. so you are wrong again.

    "thats why it has something to do with it"

    so evolution has to do with quantum mechanics because you falsely believe darwin said evolution means there is no god? ya that doesnt make any sense. i am starting to think you are schizophrenic and are unable to connect thoughts logically.

    "matter emerges from the unified field displaying consciosness in the quantum field"

    where is the "unified field"? how does matter emerge from it? what is it made of? how do you know that anything is displaying consciousness in the quantum field?

    IN FACT if you are right and when things are observed by an observer they change the wave to a particle and you are also right that there is a universal consciousness that is aware of everything than that consciousness would ensure that EVERY wave acted as a particle at ALL TIMES due to the omnipresence of that being. your own claims prove you wrong.

    "f individual particles can make decisions when observed, what does that say about the nature of our reality? "

    particles do not make "decisions" they react whether they are being bombarded with photons or not.

    you have NO idea what you have been mumbling about

  129. Epicurus

    you tried taking QM in school? or you mean you tried and they wouldnt listen to your crazy ideas that have nothing to do with quantum mechanics?

  130. Epicurus

    i have not but i have taken anthropology and evolutionary biology....

  131. jonathan jackward

    "Having said that, Evolution (or Darwin as you say) does not explain the origin of life." then why are you making any type of assumption about the origin of life through evolution you just proved my point all along.
    your asking to prove that living things come from living things? what? i thought you already realized that. oh well if you don't already know that there's nothing I can tell you
    I have answered them and you have made no statements regarding any point i bring up. let alone answered any of mine. your basically saying that living things are the same as non-living things, prove that they are living well they already do, but to claim non-living can turn into living I don't think you understand the implications of that assumption.
    i'll speel it out for you simply.
    THERE is NO evidence that inorganic material can get to a point of descision making and self awareness.

  132. jonathan jackward

    a child will throw a temper tantrum just as you guys do.

  133. Epicurus

    The Copenhagen interpretation is a consensus among some of the pioneers in the field of quantum mechanics that it is undesirable to posit anything that goes beyond the mathematical formulae and the kinds of physical apparatus and reactions that enable us to gain some knowledge of what goes on at the atomic scale. One of the mathematical constructs that enables experimenters to predict very accurately certain experimental results is sometimes called a probability wave. In its mathematical form it is analogous to the description of a physical wave, but its "crests" and "troughs" indicate levels of probability for the occurrence of certain phenomena (e.g., a spark of light at a certain point on a detector screen) that can be observed in the macro world of ordinary human experience.
    The probability "wave" can be said to "pass through space" because the probability values that one can compute from its mathematical representation are dependent on time. One cannot speak of the location of any particle such as a photon between the time it is emitted and the time it is detected simply because in order to say that something is located somewhere at a certain time one has to detect it. The requirement for the eventual appearance of an interference pattern is that particles be emitted, and that there be a screen with at least two distinct paths for the particle to take from the emitter to the detection screen. Experiments observe nothing whatsoever between the time of emission of the particle and its arrival at the detection screen. If a ray tracing is then made as if a light wave (as understood in classical physics) is wide enough to take both paths, then that ray tracing will accurately predict the appearance of maxima and minima on the detector screen when many particles pass through the apparatus and gradually "paint" the expected interference pattern.

    According to the relational interpretation of quantum mechanics, first proposed by Carlo Rovelli, observations such as those in the double-slit experiment result specifically from the interaction between the observer and the object being observed, not any absolute property possessed by the object. In the case of an electron, if it is initially observed at a particular slit, then the observer/particle interaction includes information about the electron's position. This partially constrains the particle's eventual location at the screen. If it is observed not at a particular slit but rather at the screen, then there is no "which path" information as part of the interaction, so the electron's observed position on the screen is determined strictly by its probability function. This makes the resulting pattern on the screen the same as if each individual electron had passed through both slits. It has also been suggested that space and distance themselves are relational, and that an electron can appear to be in "two places at once" — e.g., at both slits — because its spatial relations to particular points on the screen remain identical from both slit locations.

    nothing in those two interpretations of the experiment comes even close to the nonsense you and jonathan are talking about

    you are using your limited knowledge in this to push your beliefs.

  134. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    then why are you making any type of assumption about the origin of life through evolution you just proved my point all along.

    I really don't understand what are you saying... and to be honest I don't know why I'm having this conversations.

    I don't make an assumption about origin of life. Simply at this point humans don't know how life originated. That has nothing to do with evolution or Darwin. Evolution explains how life is evolving over time. You clearly lack a grasp of this concept.

    I now really begin to suspect that you base your knowledge on several YT clips and couple of creationist CDs.

    However you've been good at avoiding naming a person who replicated or witnessed a case where universal energy of consciousness (God) is creating living things (this is what you say),... and answering some of the simple questions I've asked.

  135. jonathan jackward

    Yes you don't understand.
    yes, living things create living things look through a microscope and watch it, you let me know when you see a rock creating another rock through division.
    so evolution makes the statement, "we are not sure, consciousness could be creating life, or life comes from the inorganic we don't know, " no darwin said because evolution exists there is no creator. those 2 have nothing to do with each other . bye.

    It is a change in the gene pool of a population from generation to generation by such processes as mutation, natural selection, and genetic drift. good now where does there is no creator , the universe is an accident fit into that huh? what about the precise forces in the universe another accident? we perpetuate our genes you said it evolution has nothing to do with the greater question of existence then you have no argument
    you refuse to account for information when arriving at the conclusion that there is no creator. there is a creator life comes from life , nothing comes from non-life all things alive make descisions based on there environment non-living things don't so when you look at any form of life it has consciousness, and that consciousness cannot be created in a lab, by a man, with inorganic material, therefore inorganic material is incapable of being alive EVER if it's non- livinf it stays non-living FOREVER thats my point it's easy to grasp its the truth not opinion thats the proof you have been asking for life keeps living non-life just sits there and does nothing but be manipulation by life point proven.

  136. Guest

    are you Frank Jakum by any chance?
    az

  137. jonathan jackward

    If non-life can never become life, and life can create more life, than life has something non-life does not, the ability to affect and collapse the waves function, which is consciousness, therefore life arises from consciousness since all life exhibits that same quaility and all non-life never exhibits that quality. period

  138. Epicurus

    ""we are not sure, consciousness could be creating life, or life comes from the inorganic we don't know, "

    no evolution just says, look organisms change, there are many organisms, how did they all come to be? then it explains those things by explaining how natural selection, mutation, gene drift and gene flow work together to produce evolution.

    "darwin said because evolution exists there is no creator."

    PROVE IT. where did Darwin suggest even remotely that since evolution is true that god is not true. please show me where.

    "There is a creator life comes from life , nothing comes from non-life"

    that leads to an infinite regress. unless you want to enforce another fallacy of special pleading. for example > everything that exists needs a cause > the universe exists therefore it had a cause. but that cause must exist also so it would need a cause and so would the cause of that, so on and so on.

    we are working with the evidence and what we know and admitting when we dont know. YOU are pretending you know.

    "and that consciousness cannot be created in a lab, by a man, with inorganic material"

    argument from incredulity. you are making a claim that you cant possibly know.

    "non-life just sits there and does nothing but be manipulation by life point proven."

    perhaps you should look up the Miller-Urey experiments. or better yet, google, "ABIOGENESIS HYDROTHERMAL VENTS"

    maybe you can learn something instead of pretending you have the universe figured out.....btw what level of education have you completed?

  139. Epicurus

    absolutely wrong.

    argument from incredulity. perhaps you should stay up to date with modern science.

  140. jonathan jackward

    your living in a fantasy world! you show me one incorrect aspect of my statement.

    show me proof that non-living can evolve, collapse wave function, or exhibit signs of consciousness

  141. Epicurus

    why umad though?

  142. Hesusa

    " all things alive make descisions based on there environment non-living things don't so when you look at any form of life it has consciousness"
    Wrong. Consciousness is awareness. The ability to experience feelings. Simple forms of life are not conscious beings. Take viruses for example. Some people consider them to be just a bunch of chemicals. Other people consider them to be living parasites, because they require the metabolic machinery of host cells to survive. But they do reproduce, and they do have genetic material, so many people consider them to be the simplest living organisms.

  143. jonathan jackward

    lol its all good Epicurus

  144. jonathan jackward

    Hesusa you believe what you just wrote? you might want to rephrase that so you don't embarrass yourself

    you might want to read my posts i don't want to get yelled at for duplicating what i already wrote

  145. jonathan jackward

    you guys have made up your mind about something and are not open to new information updating your beliefs to adapt to fit in all areas of discipline, you see reality is one thing, we break those things up to understand the details better ie math. physics, science, etc. but at some point that all have to fit back together again to arrive at the truth about what reality is your not accounting for any of that your probably great people but harbor some type of bias toward consciousness simply because of the fallacies that religion brought to the world, you've made up your mind before taking in all the information and truths and ongoing discoveries within each discipline. when you mature psychologically you will reach a point of unification and be willing to see the greater picture which accounts for reality. to be open minded is to be unbiased. if the evidence showed that the universe could operate without an observer, and the evidence showed nothing is fined tuned in the universe then it could be an accident. but that is not the case. life is shown in the fossil record right after the earth formed, not enough time there for it to accidentally create life ..fact.

  146. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    Do you ever read what others are writing here?

    I'll show you proof that non-living can evolve, collapse wave function, or exhibit signs of consciousness when you show me proof that universal energy of consciousness (God) is creating living things. Do we have a deal?

  147. knowledgeizpower

    No I don't expect you to assert the belief to generate that idea of interest :P

  148. Hesusa

    No. Go ahead and refute. I will take it from there.

  149. Guest

    I think your phrase stands up enough to be considered and i also happen to think that if such idea came from the computer of Hawking, the wave on the ocean would calm down for at least a moment of consideration.
    We do look up or down on people unless they say the same as we do or we say the same as they do.

    This reminded me of Joshua Bell when he played violon at a metro station, not that i can measure who is a virtuoso here or not.
    think az

  150. gsjikwblao

    Why do you ask?

  151. Eniki520

    i think rocks and elements change when affected by things like heat and pressure. arent diamonds rocks(carbon) that has been crushed so much it turns to diamonds, and i know rock melts(changes from solid to liquid) in the core of the earth. but thats not really evolution, just changes.

  152. jonathan jackward

    non-living cannot make decisions, living can

  153. Eniki520

    @ jonathan jackward
    ahahahah no one is yelling or throwing a tantrum at you. they are simply pointing out the flaws in your line of logic. dont talk to smart people if you dont want smart answers. go talk to stupid people who cant think for themselves if you want people to accept every idea you have. my bad i cant delete this.

  154. Guest

    Some people dream of accessing this with computer robots. But even if they took all the info from all the computers in the whole entire world and put that into a futuristic robot. Where would they get the

    az

    left for anyone to fill

  155. jonathan jackward

    nothing non-living can create living , there is no hard proof. not in math not in physics nit in science not in quantum mechanics anything anywhere, a song cannot write itself, a book cannot write itself, a house cannot build itself, this is the observed reality around you thats the proof the universe functions the way it does, consciousness is the ability to make decisions. non-living cannot make decisions. living can, the more complexity of the living the more it displays higher levels of consciousness. non- living continues to do nothing , non-living can't just be sitting there, and all of a sudden or over time develop the ability to be aware in any fashion, make any decisions and evolve into a higher state , that is the proof , if it did occasionally do it you would have an argument it never has done it so why base any type of world view on that it could or can or might? when you look at the point of unification the proof lines itself up, when you omit any detail, it's not obvious. you keep saying god god blah blah , there is no jesus , there is no heaven or hell or man in the clouds kicking you in the nuts for eternity. there is a universal type of energy that has the properties of consciousness and from it life arises. it makes perfect scientific sense and is the MOST logical explanation when you take into account ALL known facts regarding every separate discipline, and look at where it all connects to be the whole truthl

  156. Eniki520

    also chemical reactions can happen in all things alive or dead. so unless you live forever have unlimited resources and access to and knowledge of everything in the universe its impossible to say that non organic things can create RNA threw chemical reactions from the right conditions. Also just because we haven't discovered the answer doesnt mean its impossible, people used to think flying was impossible and the used to think the earth was round. one things that remains constant is we humans dont know all the answers. and unless you have a primordial earth in your back pockets you do experiments on you DON'T know all the answers either, and cannot prove or disprove anything you say about evolution, the orgins of life on earth, or the origins of life in the universe at large.

  157. Jack1952

    Computer science and business management. I have an intense interest in most disciplines but my background in those is limited to personal research. I try to use the logic that I have applied to computer sciences to other fields. Rigorous testing is implicit when working in programming. I expect it to be the same in most scientific fields.

    My knowledge of quantum mechanics is rudimentary although what I have read is fascinating and at times bewildering. I do know enough to realize that the double slit experiment does not indicate a cosmic consciousness. Take one giant leap, Simon says.

  158. jonathan jackward

    i'm leaving becaus eat this point all I can do is repeat myself because you will not look at what i'm saying and address it. I am addressing what your saying evolution says nothing about the origins of life and nothing in your world view does so why create an assumption that has something to do with the origins of life either find information that has something to do with life or omit that part of your beliefs and think anything is possible, a black hole can form a singularity , but a universal energy of consciousness is far fetched? atoms are mostly empty space, an observer has affect on the universe . science is full of energies , why wouldn't there be one for life if it cannot be created from non-life? your skipping over the most logical explanation, when accounting for the compendium of knowledge we have currently in 2011 when you take into account all human knowledge.

  159. Achems_Razor

    jackward,

    Nobody at least with a scientific bent, has made up there minds, we are only following the evidence if it culminates into facts. But you and @Remove: have pretty well ushered in not believing in one iota of what you both have said.

    So like the religious, or you guys with your universal energy of consciousness thing, which smacks as religion to me, and trying to temper it with science.

    Anything you or @Remove: has said is without any backing whatsoever, a bunch of words that mean squat. Following books, and in your case following your new hero @Remove:

  160. Sertsis

    Achem doesn't need to learn how to read, he reads and replies to posts well enough. You could use a refresher course in how to write, though. I have never seen the English language butchered so badly by anyone who claims to be an educated person.(try to put capital letters where they belong, and nowhere else) Calling him an ignorant fool seems to be defensive in nature, as he has taken a position contrary to your own, and you don't know how to deal with that in any other way. Your obviously low opinion of we lay-persons, who you speak of with such little regard, seems to come from a self-appointed elevated position, which is your high horse, not Achem's, he doesn't talk down to people like you do, but at least in this regard, the feelings are reciprocated. The next time you're at your much vaunted college, you should look into a course in etiquette, or civilized behavior, you could profit by either one. Finally, you saying 'peace' after each and every insult, doesn't erase them, especially when you repeat them in the very next post.

  161. Eniki520

    Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. you have nothing but theory and conjecture on your side as well. no hard evidence. where did the original life form come from? Has anyone spontaneously created life in a lab like you suggesting? also i think your the only one saying evolution was responsible for life, we are simply saying you dont know that.

  162. jonathan jackward

    in fact the universe is a computer program and quantum mechanics proves that. consciousness participates in this training simulation to advance itself and have experience.the universe is a simulation created by consciousness and every day more is uncovered to prove it.that is why the observer has affect on reality, because just like a video game, the universe is interactive.

    it is impossible , not to arrive at this conclusion when all information is considered it fits together only one way, until you omit details.
    the creator you deny is you yourself, on the highest level there is only one I. the truth is undeniable, unless your bias and omit details, you give me a better explanation that accounts for all human knowledge.
    "god" never exists separate from you yourself, to deny that is to deny your own ability to be consciousness

  163. Eniki520

    if anything evolution is a byproduct of life(if you don't adapt you die so the ones that evolved survived.) not responsible for its creation.

  164. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    We concluded that you don't know what Evolution is, but now you're showing that you don't know what EVIDENCE is.

    As @Stephen Molinares says, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Try harder.

  165. jonathan jackward

    1 sentece think about it. Life has the ability to do things nothing else does. now where do YOU suppose that ability came from? something that does not have that ability? It would take something having the ability to be conscious to create something else with that property as well. since non-living can not create living there you go the proof you desperately ask for.

  166. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    A-ha, now the universe is a computer program simulation created by some universal consciousness. Why didn't you say that in the first place. Now go and publish your theory for a peer review. It looks like you've figured the universe out.

  167. Eniki520

    "in fact the universe is a computer program and quantum mechanics proves that. consciousness participates in this training simulation to advance itself and have experience.the universe is a simulation created by consciousness and every day more is uncovered to prove it.that is why the observer has affect on reality, because just like a video game, the universe is interactive." everything you just said is conjecture and theory, with no backing evidence. where did the original consciousness come from? why has no lab spontaneously created new life from nothing but consciousness?

  168. Eniki520

    thats not proof its conjecture. you'd have to Spontaneously create life from nothing but consciousness to prove that.

  169. Vlatko

    OK I got it @jonathan jackward. Ability... do things... does not have that ability... conscious... there you go... the proof.

  170. jonathan jackward

    (Vlatko As @Stephen Molinares says, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Try harder. ) thats why your stuggling with understanding because your trying to change what i'm really saying .
    absence of evidence, now with those words what are you referring to?
    that life does not create itself? that non-life can not create life? life IS the evidence don't you get it .IF anything could turn into life that's an absence of evidence, if only life can create life that's evidence that non-life is not conscious your the one with absence of evidence because your saying that non-life can create something it dosent have, i'm saying consciousness can create something it already has. which one is evidence or a lack of?
    evolution is one tiny tiny frament, it does not explain the fabric of the universe, nor atoms, particles, it does not account for much more than it does account for. this is LOGIC any truth has to fit with all other truths, evoluton has to fit , it does until it trys to assume more than gene variations over a span of time.

  171. Epicurus

    infinite regress again.

    if life has the ability to do things that must come from other life then that life must also come from other life so on and so on forever ad infinitum.

    you are contradicting yourself.

  172. Eniki520

    Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. and your whole theory is based on what i like to call the ancient astronauts formula which is "if you cant think of how it could be done it it must not be possible"

  173. Eniki520

    @ jonathan jackward
    where is your backing evidence?

  174. Epicurus

    there is good evidence that life can come from non-life. i have already provided you with all the links and you ignore them

    you are a waste of everyones time.

  175. Eniki520

    how can something create itself? thats impossible! your the only one saying evolution created life! none of us are saying that! were sayin g your wrong!

  176. jonathan jackward

    what? you are amazingly confused huh?

  177. Eniki520

    @ jonathan jackward
    life cannot create life where life does not exist! something can not create itself! thats the major flaw in everything you say.

  178. Epicurus

    i have already provided you with links and told you to look up the miller-urey experiment as well as look up origins of life hydrothermal vents.

    the "incorrect aspect" of your statement is where you make an argument from ignorance. you claim because we dont know something for sure just yet that it must be this more grand explanation you present.

    you lack the evidence sufficient to make the claims you do. you make all the claims on a very very very small understanding of half the things you say. its an embarrassment to anyone who studies science in any way. you are illogical. hopefully one day you will be able to see how wrong you are.

    you arent brilliant and you dont have it all figured out.

  179. jonathan jackward

    your not grasping it.there is too many gaps in your view of the entirety of reality. you choose to concentrate in a couple aspects and reject the rest thinking, oh that don't all have to fit together at some point to make the whole picture. you know it makes sense that darwin did that because he was specializing on one particular area and he based things on what was known as a whole at that point in history, but your not using the same process that he did then, here and now which is to consider the whole picture with all human knowledge of the present. there are too many anomalies in the the world view of evolution , that it cannot explain, more than it can

  180. Epicurus

    im confused as to how you cant see that you are backing up into an infinite regress.

  181. jonathan jackward

    LOL i can tell it's getting through to you. now your at the stage of denial because your brain is beginning to comprehend it and it fits but your afraid to let go of past false beliefs because as a human you Identify yourself with your beliefs thinking if they change your identity will dissolve but it's not true you will just advance good luck.

  182. Daven

    yes, i have thought about this universe "being a computer". and by my logic its possible. for all we know this universe this reality is just a simulation in a computer 300 to 400 years from now therefore our "god" could be rational and mortal being, to some extent. and I'm not sure if this is relevant to what you said about non-life can not create life, but scientist have simulated the early atmosphere of earth in the lab, which was just water and electricity in tubes, but after days they started to see simple proteins, proteins being the building blocks of life, you could make an argument against your theory of nonlife=nonlife, but on the other hand scientist but this whole thing together and they are "life" therefor life made non-life = life, in this case. so your logic would still be correct. interesting thanks for making me think! nothing in my world makes me think anymore its all jersy shore hip hop and etc dull i need more intellectuals around me. although what you are saying is not fact your logic is top notch and I would be surprised if you are proven wrong in the future. but if you are right then the question would be what came before this god(universe) and what came before that and what came before that; so basically what started everything and if you except the notion of the big bang how could something be created out of nothing? wouldn't nothing be something if this is true? then the perpetual question of what created this would come back, what created nothing? I think all these questions HAVE to be answered before we except a theory of the origins of life and reality or the universe whatever you like.

  183. Eniki520

    ahahahahahahahaha thats one of the stupidest things ive ever read. there yougo with that conjecturing, you dont even know me or my belifes to make any assumtuions about me. i could be an orthodox jew for all you know.

  184. Eniki520

    he doesnt know what that means ahahahahahahah

  185. matthew gammon

    There's not one shred of evidence for a god or gods anywhere in the world. Stories and legends are all bollocks until proven yet scientists CONTINUALLY provide evidence of the things they say. I'm much more inclined to believe the scientists, even if this guy is wrong there will be a scientific answer.

  186. Eniki520

    ahahahaha funny you have resort to personal assumption about me cuz your ideas are so flawed.

  187. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    Do you know what empirical evidence means?

    Absence of evidence in abiogenesis does not mean evidence in your favor (read creationism). We were trying to tell you that. I hope you understand this.

    Simply you can't say: Non-organic can't transform to organic, therefore the universe is computer program simulation run by universal consciousness.

    We got to the level where we distinguished Evolution and Abiogenesis. Bravo. Now where were we? See you're already learning.

  188. gsjikwblao

    was your comment directed to me by mistake?

  189. jonathan jackward

    my evidence is life is conscious it can make decisions , it is SELF.
    non-life has no self. non-life cannot EVER be a self, understand, affect, observe, interact etc. when you look at a single cell organism you can comprehend why it divides and what is happening correct?
    can you vision that process happening with the non-living? how could it make sense? a non-living thing creating.creation is a expression of consciousness. not only that but living things are the only things that can be conscious. the proof is contained in the basic understanding of what you see all around you it is so simple you guys want it to be more complicated than what it really is yes the way it works it detailed, by seeing it and understanding the logic is simple.
    you are conscious human correct? can you take something non-living and make it like you? has this ever been observed? living things creating other living things has been observed billions of times that itself is the truth. the qualities of being alive come from life, look at awoman giving birth, even a cell dividing what do they have in common? non-living turning something else into being alive? no never
    living creates living.

  190. jonathan jackward

    your beyond the level of understanding , what you just stated consists of 1% of the entire message i'm communicating . it addresses 1% of the entire picture thats your problem you were never taught how to see the bigger picture

  191. Guest

    @Stephen...just a suggestion. If you are addressing Epicurus but responding to jackward (as i am doing here to you) then write @name
    az

  192. Guest

    sure makes enough sense to be considered.
    I have heard crazier things come from cosmologists.
    az

    Isn't that how science proceeds? A scientist (acredited or not....possibly many more these days) start with a theory and the rest is all research upon research.
    Just asking! i am no scientist in the proper kind of description.
    It "didn't" require a scientist to think of black matter but it required many to prove it or disprove it with numbers.

  193. jonathan jackward

    you guys are operating on fragments of understanding, try looking at the whole picture of reality first then it will sink in

  194. Eniki520

    @ azilda
    i clicked the wrong name on accidentally and didnt realize it till it was too late and i couldn't figure out how to delete it, my bad :(

  195. knowledgeizpower

    Ohh Az you just brighten my day ;)

  196. jonathan jackward

    the only way to reach your conclusion, is to look at a slice of human knowledge and not consider the rest. that is a fact. no human ever sat down and compiled all the information about each subject known, looked at where it all fits together without contradicting itself, and created their understanding about the nature of reality as a whole, and arrived at your conclusion. fact

    well this is it i'm leaving I said everything .now your making me repeat myself without addressing what i have purposed and objectively thinking about it your more worried about what you want to say back you have to let go of your ego to advance this goes with anything. PEACE OUT

  197. Eniki520

    see what you fail to comprehend is you are the only person on this site saying evolution is responsible for life! we are not saying that we are saying your answer to how life started is no better then evolution. life cannot create itself where no life exists! ive never seen life spontaneously create more life like your suggesting. cells split from other cells they dont pop into existence out of nowhere.

  198. Daven

    @ Stephen Molinares ...i think he is using simple psychology in this statement like everything else psychology is not perfected but i do remember something about what he just said stated in class so I dont think he is assuming something about you he simply using phsycology to produce a pretty good factual statement about huamans in general. im not defending him but his logic is good but i have no knowledge of the evidence he gives because i havent researched it but his logic is not flawed that much (we are imperfect after all) so i wouldnt dismiss his statements so quick or call him a fool although if he denies that there is no way he could be wrong then i would call him a fool and i am sure he would agree with me....first thing i learned in philosophy was to be humble of your knowledge you are not perfect so always leave room for error and DONT dismess feedback be it postive or negative their are official words for this but i threw away my notes :0

  199. Eniki520

    so life created itself? how is that possible?

  200. jonathan jackward

    everything i have spoke about is scienfic you seem to want to only use the science that fits your ideas reject the rest no matter the imprtance

  201. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    Right, I was never taught to see the bigger picture. And you obviously understand the bigger picture. Just one thing left for you: Provide empirical or mathematical evidence, publish it and get a Nobel prise. Peace of cake.

  202. jonathan jackward

    how is it possible for a woman to give birth? or a cell to divide?

  203. Eniki520

    women become impregnated by men, and cells divide from other cells. they dont pop out of nowhere.

  204. Eniki520

    life requires life, thats why there is no life on the moon. because there are no cells to divide and make more.

  205. jonathan jackward

    (Provide empirical or mathematical evidence, publish it and get a Nobel prise. Peace of cake. ) are you that naive to believe that the truth will always be indoctrinated into society no matter the affect it has on the control of power?

  206. Eniki520

    only conjecture, no scientific evidence, or experiments to back up anything you say. your answer is not to answer and just say life created life. which doesnt answer the question of how life came about.

  207. jonathan jackward

    see that wasnt so hard was it

  208. jonathan jackward

    now what does all life have in common , that non-life dosent have?

  209. Eniki520

    @jonathan jackward
    you didnt answer the question.

  210. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    Hahahaha... Conspiracy theorist too. I knew creationists were into that thing too.

    Beware... there is a plot. Science is misleading you. Those into power don't want you to know the big picture.

  211. Eniki520

    @Daven
    I disagree.
    "now your at the stage of denial because your brain is beginning to comprehend it and it fits but your afraid to let go of past false beliefs because as a human you Identify yourself with your beliefs thinking if they change your identity will dissolve but it's not true you will just advance good luck. "
    by reading that in the context of our conversation he is talking specifically about me not humanity in general. he is saying my mind set will not allow be to think about ideas that contradicts the ideas i already hold. which is assuming i am incapable of making my own judgement of his theories. that is assuming an awful lot about me as an individual. i change my mind about things as i get new information all the time. his reasoning is flawed because it says life created itself. which is impossible. nothing creates itself from nothing. even spontaneous combustion has an explanation and isnt really spontaneous. ive never seen or heard of anything spontaneously creating itself.

  212. Guest

    I am having so much fun!
    It's like opening the box of a new puzzle with a very interesting image on it. I love puzzles and games, actually i love to play.
    The best puzzle is life ain't it?
    The last two days have been very entertaining.

    az

  213. Guest

    Now Jonathan quit telling us you are leaving. Oz,a good friend, did that lately and he really left. Makes me wonder what he would have added to the conversation below. Fireworks, that's for sure!
    az

  214. Guest

    @ Achems
    Remember The Dancing Wu-Li Masters ? I enjoyed that book a lot, but even as young as I was when I read it (18) I didn't buy into half of what was in it.

  215. StillRV

    I think someone on here needs to study up on spontaneous amino acid and protein synthesis scenarios. Primordial soup if you will. Life is elements and chemical interactions. As much in a human as in an amoeba it is all chemical reactions due to elemental physics. Random chance? perhaps. Divine intervention? maybe. Honestly what does it matter. Fact is we can do it now. We can synthesize both proteins and amino acids from base elements with modern tech. So therefore we have become creator. Faith, Religion, God... they are all only good in the same way any philosophy is, as a source of emotional uplift and moral guidance. A well-spring of hope and kindness. When the faith fails in that the faith becomes a burden as opposed to a blessing. Keep your faith. keep your god. and keep your church for as long as it grants those blessings and cast it aside when it fails. that is all.

  216. Achems_Razor

    @Pysmythe:

    Yes, I also delved 100% into new-age stuff years back ran the full gamut, read all of Jane Roberts books Seth speaks etc, etc. Castaneda's Don Juan etc, etc. and anything else that I could get my hands on. But that was then. Castaneda was a scam. But you know, Jane Roberts books, Seth speaks, has some truths in it, that quantum physicists are now resolving into fruition, at least in math, parallel universes, many worlds theory, multidimensional selves. etc.

  217. Hesusa

    I think I understood what youre claim is. That all life is conscious. Your definition of consciousness "non-living cannot make decisions, living can" is not correct. How you define consciousness makes all the difference. It can be transitive consciousness, subject of conscious state, Self-consciousness, wakefulnes or sentience. For sake of argument lets say that sentience comes closest to what you consider it to be.

    "Sentience. It may be conscious in the generic sense of simply being a sentient creature, one capable of sensing and responding to its world (Armstrong 1981). Being conscious in this sense may admit of degrees, and just what sort of sensory capacities are sufficient may not be sharply defined."

    or in other words there is no consencious to how far down the animal hierarchy ladder conscieousness goes. Are insects conscious? Worms? Plants? Bacteria? You cannot possibly know if these organisms are conscious.

  218. Daven

    humanity in general is like that. and i guess to him you were showing the aspects of denial or whatever. so better understanding yourself as a human what you do when you get proven wrong and etc will only make you better. you say "nothing creates itself from nothing" does not the big bang exactly say that? the universe was created from nothing. according to the most excepted theory of the origins of the universe the last time i checked which has been a long time ago so i might be wrong. and how do you know that is impossible? REMEMBER THEIR IS NO PROVE THAT AN AIRPLANE CAN FLY, THEIR ARE ONLY THOUSANDS OF TESTS THAT SHOW AN AIRPLANE WONT FAIL. thats "scientific honesty" Im pretty sure that terminology is wrong but the definition i gave is correct. and if life was created from nothing wouldnt that mean that nothing IS something? then what created "nothing"? to be truthful no one has been able to explain what is NOTHING.

  219. Daven

    yes the experiment were they simulated the early atmosphere? the experiment was only tubes water and electricity i believe which would simulate earths EARLY atmosphere. and leaving it on for a couple of days out of only water and electricity simple proteins were generated among other things. :) I'm pretty sure the last couple sentence are from a quote? I cant remember were i read it but i have before.

  220. Sertsis

    I believe that Oz might have ripped a new one for a few people here today, and I would have enjoyed reading it.

  221. jonathan jackward

    yeah because proteins are alive! not...........
    it might take more than urinating in a jar to create life.

    i just might stick around and stir things up a bit round he-ah

  222. jonathan jackward

    yeah, because I haven't posted 20 times that life came from Consciousness which is a universal force of energy, and only consciousness can create life, nor have I said non-living cannot has not and will not create life.....nope never posed those words here 20 times , with no response

  223. jonathan jackward

    life requires consciousness

  224. jonathan jackward

    yeah, because I haven't posted 21 times that life came from Consciousness which is a universal force of energy, and only consciousness can create life, nor have I said non-living cannot has not and will not create life.....nope never posed those words here 21 times , with no response ...again

  225. jonathan jackward

    Conspiracy theorist!!! LOL i bet you believe that democracy can exist in a monetary system as well! because the person with the most money does not determine the status quo, or have an impact on what is indoctrinated into society? so yeah the richest organizations that have their power to lose by changing what the average person is educated by and with are just gonna give that up all in the name of truth! HA in your dreams ...you've never dealt with them or any government or military branch or you would have first hand knowledge about the details surrounding what gets into a text book. or who has a hand in what the general consensus is

  226. jonathan jackward

    empirical evidence- is that non-living cannot has not will not become conscious............ the experiments fail

  227. jonathan jackward

    your right SOMEBODY does wink wink

    (Life is elements and chemical interactions) yeah sulfur, iron, water turning into steam all life...............BOO GET OF THE STAGE

  228. jonathan jackward

    i'm staying

  229. jonathan jackward

    wait.............. i like what you just said

  230. jonathan jackward

    yeah, because I haven't posted 21 times that life came from Consciousness which is a universal force of energy, and only consciousness can create life, nor have I said non-living cannot has not and will not create life.....nope never posed those words here 21 times , with no response ...again

  231. jonathan jackward

    empirical evidence, anyone can witness life dividing
    empirical evidence no-one has witnessed non-life creating or turning into life
    empirical evidence

  232. jonathan jackward

    I said consciousness (one word at atime go slow take your time) creates (almost there take your time) life. there now before you change the meaning into something else all things that are not alive do not have consciousness. therefore if it does not have it it can't create it (read again if necessary)

    Daven i like what your about

  233. jonathan jackward

    daven has a good mind, I didn't watch a couple of movies and come up with a couple theorys and I'm not perfect i've studied the unification of all separate disciplines for almost 15 years intensely to arrive at the conclusions that i have very in depth and only kept a belief if it fit with truth in all other areas thats empirical evidence . that the nature of reality is a entire system made up of mathmatics, physics, philosophy, science, physiology, etc.. the is a point where they all have to be accounted for to understand what reality really is not a faith belief or wish or desire it works the way IT works.

  234. Jack1952

    Would that be a conscious entity creating life? And it's not even at the quantum level either.

  235. jonathan jackward

    entity like gravity, entity like electro-magnitism then yes

  236. jonathan jackward

    (.....dont pop into existence out of nowhere. ) you think that is what i'm saying? wow the message has not even been recieved

  237. Jack1952

    No, Jonathan. Entity like a scientist in a lab.

    If gravity is a conscious entity, could I persuade it to nullify gravity...for me....if I worship it? It could come in handy in some specific situations.

  238. jonathan jackward

    waste such a waste your not even able to fathom common language. your saying that 'im say what i'm not saying so i should not communicate a message to you that you subconscious alters into something for you to rebel against. it really shows your reasoning skills, and projects your self image of insecurity. i'm sorry i hope you feel better about yourself in the future good luck!

  239. jonathan jackward

    that sentence is correct, as long as you change the meaning of what i'm communicating into something else simplify the implications of that meaning and make an assumption of me from that self imagined meaning your receiving.

  240. jonathan jackward

    your a waste of keyboard stokes.

  241. jonathan jackward

    so you ask me a question then give me the answer to yourself also? i already gave you the answer no man in the cloud kickin you in the nuts for sinning

  242. NAND Gate

    Nope. History has proven your kind wrong a million times over (more actually).

    Not interested. Your psychology defines your beliefs, and I dont do that.

    Even you admit they are "beliefs".

  243. jonathan jackward

    everything must exist on the quantum level have you even read my posts?

  244. MoNKeyDaDDy

    Thank "god" i watched this..i have been trying to explain the way i have been thinking about this hole deal. And thank to the man, the "myth" the legend vlatko..(tnks again) i dont have to put into words..its seems so perfect to me the way he explains it..better thank i could..not good at that.

    I was a born again for a little while there a long long time ago, had decided i was hopeless,lost shot out..
    I was shooting heroin into my arm at an alarming rate. it was alarming because i didn't have anymore money..lol. and was than a thief.yada yada.

    anyway i accepted the lord and savior.." cough ,cough" as my man..and took in the "holy spirit" should have snorted him.lol..or smoked him.. Jesus weed..lol..

    Psst ..i never really believed just wanted to be part of something..after i ran from that..i found myself sober..and really into my mind, physiology.etc.

    thanks to this site.."vlatko" has done..i saw kymatica .it opened my mind a little..not the best doc ,but it started it all for me..document research..library runs.. journalism, meditation ..i felt alone,after a while..different from so many ..i was angry and pissed at this religiousness in the world.the government was so different from the way it started..i was just pissed.

    than one morning i was sitting, i guess about an hour passed and i had the strangest experience in thought..it all unfolded like some kynda weird movie .
    why the bible,why god ,"the big mac",,it is all so simple but yet was so hard to see..

    thanks to u vlatko i found this freedom..real freedom..and guess what..it was all up to me..and of course my mind..i do think there is alot more to come.."thank god" lol..

    free urself.

  245. StillRV

    @Daven; No quotes in there that I am aware of, but like they say everything has already been said.
    @Jonathan; Proteins and amino acids are the building blocks that create organisms. DNA? As for your misdirect, No elements in and of themselves do not make life it is the combination and interaction of those elements which becomes life.
    @Jack; No not a conscious entity per-say. More like a semi predetermined natural progression set into motion by the simple nature of things. So no not entity but nature its self.

  246. StillRV

    Oz needed a break. We all do it from time to time. It is essential to go out and experience life and humanity to come in here and argue the semantics of the human condition.

  247. Sertsis

    There you go Az, one avatar, as promised.

  248. Greg_Mc

    If the doc is anywhere near as hard to follow as the conversations below then I am clearly neither smart enough or educated enough to get anything out of it. There is also the possibility that some of the people commenting are far to contumacious (thought I would toss in a big word hoping to confuse some of you like your comments confused me lol) to consider that what someone else has to say may be valid. But seeing as I am basically unable to comprehend even the basics of most of the comments then am I in a position to scrutinize the way others on this page choose to interact with each other? Well lol of course I am, I have to contribute in some way. Whether it makes sense or adds anything to the comment section is doubtful but hey I wanted to type something here.

  249. tomregit

    Hours ago you stated "I'm done here" only to post more drivel, then you state "I'm leaving becaus eat [sic] this point all i can do is repeat myself....". Please, please, be a man of your word. LEAVE.

  250. StillRV

    Haha. Feel free. Your comment is a good one. Anyone can debate topics such as this, it is a circular and, at the end of the day, meaningless debate. The observation and interaction with others that makes us what we are now. Whether we were created or simply are by chance came to be.

  251. Guest

    @Sertsis
    Hey!! This is probably a stupid question, but is that one of you?

  252. Pezevenchiul

    @jonathan jackward you sure do like to repeat yourself and argue like a child...Do you really think that doing this will enforce or give more credits to your arguments, or better said, what arguments?...Your best argument is an argument from incredulity mixed with argument from ignorance...do you really studied 15 years for that?

    My opinion is that if you posted a clear comment in which you define what consciousness is and argue that is not a product of the human brain, or that it along with free will are not just illusions etc...or if you said something that is not your personal opinion(which you presented like an absolute truth) and been concise people will listen to you more:).

    Anyway, have you watched the lecture before commenting? Was there any mention of how life was created?

    Considering the fact you posted the same comment a bazillion times :) I think nobody will regret your departure from this site.

    May you have a happy life...

  253. JimmytheLizard

    Consciousness is not so easy to define in scientific terms, similar how you cannot accurately read my thoughts or picture my dreams. The nature of consciousness is abstract and seems to me to be only approachable through philosophy and metaphysics, but just because it cannot be scientifically measured doesn’t mean that it cannot exist. Consciousness in my opinion is personal, self-aware, self-modifying information which transcends any physical understanding of the brain just as meaning transcends the words in a book.
    Prickles vs. goo….

  254. Hesusa

    Here's a thought. So far it has been impossible for scientist to test animals consciousness. You could try colapsing the wavelenghth via the observer effect with diffrent organisms as observers. If a mouse colapsess the wavelength then we have a conscious observer. If a microbe does the same you will not just validate your point but also solve a contraversy of a few hundret years about consciousness of animals. Good luck and let us know will you?

  255. Luyang Han

    What Andy Thomson presented is some scientific common knowledges. The points are all valid, but he is really not a good presenter. As a atheist I know what he want to express, but he is truly not persuasive. He constantly switches the topics without really systematic explanation.

  256. Guest

    @gsjikwblao
    why not? you certainly are not named gsjikwblao

    I see in all your comments you keep plugging this book.
    No is OK, Yes is Ok and not answering is ok too...just wondering if i am talking to the author.
    az

  257. Guest

    I see many bits of comments in many docs such as:

    Don't show to others that you've educated yourself on the matter just by watching several YouTube clips

    What you need is an in-depth science education

    parlaying stuff that you have picked up on the net

    you need school or some form of "official education" e.g PHD or masters.

    and it makes me curious as to how many years of education does someone need to have, to not be ridiculed of their education
    and also it made me wonder what kind of degree do people like @Achems, @Epicurus, @Vlatko, @psinet, @Stephen Molinares, @Jonathan have ...just to name a few

    care to tell or is this too personal?

    removementalattachments wrote:

    In nearly every field official education is becoming a joke thanks to the internet. The people just need some pushing to do the level of research that is required to match. This is clearly the case even amongst people who have gone through graduate school. Some people are just far more involved in the process of learning than others.
    True or False?
    az

  258. His Forever

    And they call ME a man of blind faith! Wow, that was a lot of "if's" and "maybe's" for life to even start a germ (extremophile or not)!

    Anyway, Epic: I left a message on the other doc for you. Your comment was to embedded to reply to. You can trace it via my profile.

    Blessings!

    Charles B.

  259. verseinu

    I have an undergraduate degree in psychology (i'm trying to grease the wheels a little, this is a really interesting comment/question).

    I entered university at a different time in life then most do, so it was more of a conscious choice as opposed to inertia or expectation. I say this because I think I have an appreciation for my education beyond merely a degree.

    I learned about science, the scientific method, and the philosophy of science. It really opened up my mind without any push to fill it with anything...that was up to me. For that I am eternally grateful.

    I don't have the specific knowledge to completely understand and argue quantum mechanics, physics, relativity, etc. But I think I am able to see a measure of the strength of an argument based on how it is presented. I learned a framework to evaluate and comprehend ideas and the world around. My experience is such that I gained this ability by getting an 'official' education.

    Saying all this. Will I give more credence to the more educated of two opposed sides...definitely not. I've meet some grad students who have disillusioned me of the idea that more education necessarily means more capable. BUT, I will more readily judge an argument presented in a concise, clear, comprehensible, understandable way (this is where jonathan jackward lost his way in my book). And I think, in general, a higher level of education enables one more easily to do this.

    What you need is an in-depth science education

    I think the world would be a better place if everyone had access to a general science education. It would guard against the cherry picking of idea's to artificially bolster an argument...unfortunately the internet makes this too easy.

    Going so far as to ridicule one on their education is just lazy arguing.

  260. gsjikwblao

    Whatever created physical existence and the the causation-bound function of evolution which requires time in order to function must itself be outside time . Since any change or event must occupy a space in time, such a power must be eternal.
    To not exist, and to then come into existence is an event which requires a space in time. This is also true of a mechanical thought process. Thus we can understand that whatever created physical existence could not have engaged a thought process in linear time because time did not yet exist. Thus, we can understand (or at least consider) that physical existence, and the evolving nature of the same, is an automatic by-product of what ever caused it to be.
    This is consistent with a non-physical "first cause" for everything else. It can also be considered, that a motivating force, that we call "love" which is a drawing force on our awareness could not function as such without something to draw upon. If we consider our conviction of conscience to receive it's life from the flow of love between them, and that it is in diametric opposition to the individual perspective produced by our awareness being anchored in the midst of separate physical bodies, then we can consider all of physical existence to be in facilitation of a necessary diametrically opposed motivation. As all of the love in all of the hearts of the human race compresses back to the single point of perspective from which it expanded, it automatically produces, in an evolutionary process, a human race with an increased sensitivity conscience, the very motivation by which a person is driven to consider this.
    Inasmuch as we can know that love is a binding motivation, we can also understand that it is an illuminating one. People who are under the influence of love can see things that hateful people can not see.
    Thus we can understand that a diametrically opposed motivation would not only be division-justifying, but it would also be deceptive.
    If we can consider these things, we can understand the immense size, age and complexity of physical existence to
    be necessary to provide us with a deceptive, alternate path of understanding, until the time of change from a base-level convicting conscience to a convicting conscience of much greater influence. With our convicting consciences in their initial, low-lying state we are most influenced by the processing of information through our five physical senses. As we strive to understand our environment we see progress as time proceeds. At the time of change, we will realize that we never even knew what our environment truly was.
    This is not an insult, but was a necessary causation-bound development extending from the "first cause".

  261. Yavanna

    I believe you came from a cock and as such are still one

  262. PaulGloor

    Community college, Comp-sci and Automotive mechanics and totally suck at math. I cant hold a candle to some of the brains on here but I like to think I have a reasonable grasp on reality and a valid thing or two to say on occasion :)

  263. Sertsis

    @Pysmythe
    Why, yes it is me! I took that pic last night, when I finally figured out how to set up my avatar. Why, do I look familiar to you?
    p.s. That wasn't a stupid question, a stupid question would be if I asked you that.

  264. Guest

    @Sertsis (Hey, I'm up here...)
    Lol. Nah, but I think its got some style to it, and I like that.

  265. Eniki520

    @jonathan jackward
    Isn't life the only thing with consciousness? you would need something to be alive to have consciousness. so your saying life came from life which doesnt answer your question of how it come about since according to you life came from conscious. gravity isnt conscious, the forces of nature are not conscious, they dont make choices, gravity doesnt change on its own. its not conscious.The inorganic material that existed before life wasn't conscious. where did that original consciousness come from?

  266. Eniki520

    i think no matter how educated a person may be as long as another disagrees they will use the uneducated stick. and a degree doesnt make you smart you can buy those now a days. life experience and critical thinking are more important. i dont have a degree at the moment, but im planning on going back to school next semester for history(my favorite subject) or law, but i didnt call jonathan jackward uneducated i just tried to explain why i disagreed. Since(by everything ive seen evidence of) life is the only thing with consciousness him saying life came from consciousness didnt make sense to me since something cannot create itself.

  267. Eniki520

    also people tend to resort to personal attacks when they dont have a real argument.

  268. jonathan jackward

    i got kicked off for some reason? i did not mean to cause any trouble i wont speak my mind i like the people here and like to engage in intelligent conversation

  269. jonathan jackward

    true, but I do believe that the interaction with individuals in a class room environment is important for developing skills in communication and critical thinking.

    I got my diploma from a cracker jack box.

  270. Sertsis

    Happened to me once too, but it was just moments before I was back, it's probably just a glitch.

  271. jonathan jackward

    i haad to create a new email account to get on
    i wont cause trouble ADMIN sorry if i did get booted

  272. jonathan jackward

    i like your comment and agree, somethig can't create itself but it can create another with it's same quality.

  273. jonathan jackward

    I believe that someone can live a lifestyle devoted to advancement , develop a system of accelerated learning and cover the same amount of education in a fraction of the time that school or college can provide since it is not a one on one teaching and learning experience. In order to do it the person needs to find the way that they learn most efficiently . think like a professor creating curriculum and adhering to it. over time they can accelerate their learning. after spending time learning each area of interest the person can objectively use unification to have a understanding of the bigger picture, it also helps to see where the truth connects from each area as only truth will.A world view must not conflict with a know truth within an area and will connect with all others arriving at the whole.

  274. Guest

    @Sertsis
    At least I was smart enough to cover my face up!
    (lol. Just picking...)

  275. Sertsis

    @pysmythe
    t.y., buddy, and back at you.

  276. Eniki520

    @jonathan jackward
    so i dont understand how your theory would work without life(consciousness) already existing. could you clarify?

  277. knowledgeizpower

    you didn't get kicked off dude chill out yo... don't let that ego trip you out though like it can play with you real tuff...i digg some stuff you speak on you seem really strong minded very enlightened they not gonna kick you off thats why most of us are here on this site IMO..

  278. jonathan jackward

    Stephen Molinares, we live in a universe in which life (in general) creates other life (not itself) correct? people give birth ,cells divide etc. that is the norm. and even within the quantum level consciousness is displayed, so consciousness is not a billion brain cells working together(human) nor in a cell just a machine detecting it's environment with a sense, it can be observed at the level in which all is made up of. in recent years physicists have uncovered many levels of detail dealing with the universe and consciousness, it takes consciousness to collapse the waveform. this means at the level our reality is operating on, consciousness is literally the key to having a universe. because without it everything is in super position. the non-living is located everywhere until it is observed. this tells us a lot about reality, if it wasn't verifiable every time it would be different.since it takes consciousness to have our reality, and consciousness exists at the quantum level we are talking about something much more fundamental than previously thought throughout history of science. just as we know much more about the physical world than then. because consciousness is required for waves of possibility to become things. that means it is no by product of atoms, since atoms cannot be themselves without the waveform collapsing in the first place.consciousness is not fully understood yet in it's purest form, it's not a man in the cloud's sending you to hell , but it is now scientific fact that it is the foundation of what we call reality.this information i gave you is unified with physics, mathematics,quantum mechanics, etc. on all levels there is a connection where the peices fit perfectly. in fact to remove consciousness from say quantum mechanics you cannot connect it with physics and math etc. we are still learning a lot about it but we now know our reality is interactive with consciousness.the implications of the importance of this suggest consciousness existed at the beginning of reality, otherwise everything would still be in superposition. this is one example in one particular field. but it is at the foundation level in which all this exists so it is a great start to opening the mind and letting updated information into a world view .every day more is uncovered. and a better description of reality will exist. it's not going to be like any past human assumptions only the way it really is.

  279. jonathan jackward

    thank you , i appreciate it I'll remember your advice ;D

    it really is a great site

  280. Angel Rojas

    that guy the commented the "idea" at the end there. he will chime in the robot apocalypse

  281. jonathan jackward

    I agree...
    I respect your opinion about me, hope it was not made out of context, and invite you to re-evaluate it as you see more of my perspective

  282. Sertsis

    Judgement day?

  283. Achems_Razor

    You did not get kicked off, strictly from your own mind, all you did was flip your universe, probably because you were continuing on your ramblings of your quantum nuances, in your case the reality you had already formed as being still on TDF in quantum time, and because no one was listening to your quantum queries, made it a closed system, so everything was in a state of superposition, a state of you both still being on TDF and not being on TDF.

    Once you yourself had observed you were not on TDF you therefore collapsed the waveform and transposed yourself to Newtonian time, because in Newtonian time they are simply a part of a chain of events and not in a superposition state, and now your being on TDF will be apparent throughout the whole system including any evidence of your posts.

    Re...Schrodinger's cat"

  284. jonathan jackward

    thank god it's over now..............

    we know that cats die on a quantum level..............(sarcasm jik
    real answer
    the inside of the box is never in superposition, beciase the cat has consciousness therefore the superposition stops as soon as everything is in the box. unless the cat was dead to begin with . which would be pretty goofy
    got anything else from a 1935 worldview?

  285. Truthseeker420

    I've learned more from THIS dude in ten minutes than most men in ten years. No offense Vlatko!

  286. Sertsis

    lol, are you trying to be a sh*t? This is clearly another Pavlovian experiment attempting to make Jonathan drool at the sight of controversy.

  287. Guest

    I agree with you Stephen, attacks are thrown around here in both directions...sort of like in life but worse 'cause no one can punch you in the nose.

    But i was referring more precisely to education.
    az

  288. Guest

    All opinions count. Sometimes it's better to pause and let it sink a night. You do have passion. Don't look for support, look for answers. If you can't be GOD, then be a dog. Dig deeper.

    Self importance doesn't hurt anyone
    Immerse yourself in your Self
    az

  289. jonathan jackward

    I did above you check it out

    sorry if i hurt your feelings
    in the last 10,000 years not one human has witnessed life coming from the in-organic, yet evolution assumes this, where is the evidence? quantum physisists, continuously see that consciousness is required at the quantum level for inorganic to even exist in one place. thats why its not a by produc of anything but a foundation of life all life and every life. only scientists basing their theories on 50 year old knowledge or older and omitting common knowledge of reality will come to the conclusion of charles darwin pure laziness.

  290. Achems_Razor

    Can't you do anything without "wikipedia"?

    Schrodinger's cat was just a mind experiment, basically a paradox.

    And you know nothing about superposition states, hurry run to wikipedia.

  291. jonathan jackward

    how is it a mind experiment , when the cat is never in superposition? the cat and it's environment would never be in superposition. only if you ASSUME that consciousness comes from a higher cognitive level than the cat, (no evidence) can the experiment work in the mind. you simply cannot have a living thing in the experiment at all unless you have a 1935 worldview maybe. I could make the assumption that you got the experiment from wiki , but who am I to make an assumption about you? therefore I did not through in a personal attack into my statement which is what you resort to showing that psychologically your not taking in all information before making a logical decision. If you exhibit that type of behavior with a simple exercise like communication, do you do it with your scientific reasoning as well? from this point on I will not respond to posts that contain personal attcks. I will take that as you have nothing valuable left to say and it will be noticed be everyone where the attacks come from.

  292. Sertsis

    Are you trying to be a sh*t? This is clearly a Pavlovian experiment in an attempt to make Jonathan drool at controversy!... or are you in on it too?... Is this some kind of conspirasy?

  293. Achems_Razor

    Now am convinced you know nothing about what you are talking about. The answer according to quantum mechanics is the cat is 50% dead and 50% alive.

    Quantum mechanics describes the world in terms of a wave function. DeWitt wrote that the cat "at the end of the (one half life) of the Nitrogen-13 atom...do you know the rest? I do.

    "the total wave function for the system will have a form in which the living cat and dead cat are mixed in equal portions" (Reference: B.S. De Witt and N. Graham, eds., "The Many Worlds Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics" (Princeton, 1973) pg.156)

    When the box is opened the cat is either alive or dead.

  294. jonathan jackward

    personal attack again no response your going to have to speak to me intelligently without passing judgment from now on I refuse to partake in psychological warfare.

  295. Eniki520

    so your saying everything has consciousness? In my mind in order for something to have consciousness it has to be self aware and have some sort of self control/ability to affect it environment.(example an animal runs if you hit it or a plant will move towards the light,or they both need nutrition and react to the environment to survive. I've never seen a rock(or any nonliving thing) do any of those things much less move unless pushed by something else.) i agree things appear to move on their own but this only because at the moment we fail to fundamentally understand the science behind how they work. not everything makes sense or is explainable by our current level of technology and understanding of the universe(example dark matter) and even our science itself(things like e string theory and quantum mechanics aren't fully understood and cant answer everything. it seams to me your reaching beyond current understanding and jumping to conclusions(that may or may not be proven true as our knowledge of the universe grows).

  296. Achems_Razor

    @jonathon...

    It is not a personal attack, do not be a baby, Your hero @Remove mentioned DeWitt in his big primary post about your consciousness field whatever, so what I am telling you is very viable, or maybe you have not even heard of DeWitt, well, there is always "wiki"

  297. jonathan jackward

    1. the answer is the cat is living therefore conscious no superposition in the box.
    2. nothing can be conscious and not conscious to do so would create a paradox itself the universe would not allow it . the exercise is nonsensical as there is only living and non-living . regardless of what DeWitt thinks the universe works the way it does not the way I want or you or DeWitt

  298. Achems_Razor

    @Sertis:

    Absolutely, I can't help it, conspiracy? good idea!

  299. jonathan jackward

    you cannot speak without throwing sand in the person's eyes so i will not be speaking with you again unless your willing to stick to intelligence and remove your psychological games.

  300. Sertsis

    @ Achem You know there's nothing like a good conspiracy theory, but you also know that I was just joking. Right?

  301. Achems_Razor

    @Sertis:

    Yes, I knew you were just joking.

  302. Achems_Razor

    @jonathan:

    Are you saying I am not intelligent, and if so, what are your reasons?

    Don't know what you mean about sand in eyes, psychological games, please inform.

  303. Pezevenchiul

    Here you go again repeating yourself...Please stop!

    You didn't hurt my feelings but you are annoying a lot of people with your childish behavior(I hope you are not a troll and doing this on purpose). You don't say anything concrete and when presented with a question or problem you act like a mentally challenged person...your reply to my comment has very little to do with what I said in it.

    And if you know anything about the theory of evolution at all, you know that it doesn't make any statements about how life was created...you already discussed that point...and in my limited understanding of quantum physics I though that common knowledge doesn't apply to the subatomic level...but I don't feel qualified to argue this, anymore than you are.

    Anyway, I already given you to much attention and should not have answered to your reply, so I'll end here, I hope you do the same :).

    All the best...

  304. Vlatko

    No offense taken @Truthseeker420.

  305. Vlatko

    @jonathan jackward,

    You were kicked off because you've directly, brutally insulted me (I've deleted the comment in question). But there you go... you have a second chance.

    Edit: Here is what you've said -

    ...and what becuase i'm black i like fried chicken? and I dance well and have a big --trfd?

    great scientific skills your exercising bigot.

  306. verseinu

    I just finished a comment critiquing his commenting (kind of unnecessary after @Achems just tore him to shreds with the claws of Schrodinger's cat!)....wanting to give him the benefit of the doubt.....and then this.

  307. jonathan jackward

    well i thank you sir, im sorry didnt mean nothing by it, i really like the documentaries that are going on the site. great job i have really enjoyed this site a lot more than any other documentary site that is out there, your doing a better job than anybody else on the web that is saying a lot!

  308. jonathan jackward

    verseinu, I don't see how @Achems just tore me to shreds with the claws of Schrodinger's cat, just reciting something that is common knowledge to everyone in the world not an argument.check out what the bleep do we know excellent film it came out in 2004.

  309. jonathan jackward

    Achems_Razor I mean with sand in the eyes, that every statement you make has to include a personal attack. not only that but the attack, is always derived from an assumption made by you, about the person that is about information you could not possibly know, showing that your not taking all information in about the person before assuming something about them creating a storyline for the foundation of that person's knowledge or education.That is not practicing good science because if you perform that same thought exercise with real data, your assuming before you get all the information, bad science. psychologically it is belittling the person in order to make a unrelated point which is nonsensical, and not related to science.I will not partake in personal attacks i'm not here for that. I respect the site, and refuse to judge someone when i don't know anything about them. they may have a different opinion because they have had different experiances and i would rather try to understand them then try to insult them to hear my self speak .thank you

  310. jonathan jackward

    your doing an excellent job here, there isn't another site coming close to how good this site is ,and what it offers people I have been coming here for years before ever chatting with anyone .everything about this site has gone unmatched.

  311. Carolyn Cameron

    I love this stuff, so interesting! Did anybody watch God on the Brain! Totally mad when you think that many of these so called prophets from the past who had life changing religious experiences might have actually had epilepsy or some other kind of brain disorder.

    You can see why they could be so confused between reality and illusion! I am on high levels of pain meds and had a pretty real looking hallucination last year that scared the crap out of me. It was as real as my cat is sitting next to me right now!!

  312. Guest

    I have actually read many such comments here although never directed at you. Most people wouldn't dare and most of the time if they did, they wouldn't pass moderators.

    And i do agree, very discriminating.

    Makes me wonder why do people resort to that? A little too much kindling on burning man.

    I must say Jonathan won't let go. I would suggest that you get involved in other docs, on different subjects and let the water calm down. We now know almost exactly where you stand, we can't all stand on the same dot.
    az

  313. jonathan jackward

    in comment to below, so your saying everything has consciousness? some people do believe that, I myself do not feel comfortable enough to make that kind of assumption. to sum it up consciousness exists on the quantum level within different contexts, therefore it is not a strictly Newtonian phenomenon like previous theories have assumed.consciousness shows up in new data within different contexts as a foundational part of reality ,so much so it is required just to have the universe in the way that we see it on the Newtonian level.

  314. jonathan jackward

    LOL

  315. jonathan jackward

    i wont to that again, but in fairness you did not post what you posted to me first, calling me a creationist and conspiracy theorist which i never called you anything, i don't identify with those terms i thought it was a personal attck which i'm not partaking in here now i'm sorry about that. the statement was sarcasm showing an assumption. as i feel it is wrong to judge someone i will not judge anyone here and thankyou for your hard work on this site.
    i do not think anything negative about you in any way, in fact your skills speak for themself withthe number of admins out there failing in comparison
    I am moving on from this section now.

  316. jonathan jackward

    Azilda your absolutely right.

  317. Andrew Preston

    I agree with jonathan, this is the pinnacle of documentary sites available on the net today. I like the inclusion of lectures too, very good move. There's one called 'a universe from nothing' by lawrence krauss (available on youtube) that i believe should be shared here, as it'll get the audience it actually deserves. keep up the fantastic work!

  318. gsjikwblao

    No. My name is Gsjikwblao. But It is so hard to pronounce that I may change it some day.
    The reason I am here is to get intelligent opinions on the recent discovery that the book documents. The book is mentioned for the benefit of anyone who wants to get the "heads-up" on an understanding that is going to slowly grow from this point forward as it has since the discovery was made in October of 1995. This process is a natural by-product of the human race evolving into an increased sensitivity state of convicting conscience.
    In an attempt to spark your interest, which shouldn't be to hard if you are a "student of life", I will labor on with the following:

    Most people are aware that they will suffer less in life if they have a lot of money. So we are motivated to put a high priority on obtaining as much as we need and even a bit more for the uncertain future. When we encounter the suffering of others we are aware that responding to their suffering will pose a threat to our priorities. We can find relief from the resulting feeling of guilt that we experience in what seems to be an obvious interpretation of the Bible. This natural response, Being a by-product of our nature is what has kept us stalled on "surface interpretations. We have not found the true interpretation before now because we have not been motivated by our nature to seek it before now.
    People with significant convictions of conscience are, by their nature, painfully aware of others who are resisting theirs. When they hear these people claiming victory in the judgement of their souls because they performed the various conditions of salvation projected in convenient surface interpretations, a sensitive person would find comfort in the contradictions retained in the Bible when it is read in this way. For a sensitive person, these contradictions are the proof that these interpretations, convenient to insensitive people, are not true.
    The only way to eliminate these contradictions is in the application of figurative definitions for a handful of key words, the first of which are given directly in the scriptures themselves. These lead to the ones that follow . Remember that they must be applied if the Bible is to be without contradiction. They maintain these definitions, without exception, through the volume. The manner in which the new interpretation emerges is fully supported by established fact in the field of human psychology.

  319. NAND Gate

    The reason you believe in gods is simple - your imagination can't create anything better.

    I could spin you a tale of creation that will set your heart aflame, and fill your mind with romantic notions of Other.

    But I can't, because you are not looking for reality, and you will not hear.

  320. NAND Gate

    Completely true - there is only one form of education.

    Autodidacticism.

    All else is false.

  321. Killin

    Well done, well explained! But it still doesn't sway me from the aesthetic, the community, the values, the core spirituality of my particular faith. Not sure why it is so important to the evolutionary scientists to disprove systems of faith. I can understand concerns about fundamentalism, very literal thinking and its implications socially and politically. I can sort of understand that. But , there is such a fabulous legacy of intellectual and aesthetic and social action in the worlds religions, I don't know how or why this can be 'given up'? I have a hunch it is about power. The scientist does not like any interference , any potential influence that over-rides their particular paradigm. This is why perjorative humour is employed...to lower the standing of a competing paradigm of the human condition.

  322. Killin

    PS. The' theory of mind' also be used to explain secular philosophy of all sorts, but we do not for this reason conclude that philosophy or psychology for that matter 'hijack' cognitive mechanisms to produce myths and induce certain emotions, beliefs and behaviour. Also in terms of reciprocal altruism, very interesting, religious move way beyond RA -which is a semantic reversal anyway. RA describes co-operation, not true altruism. But you would have to explore and understand that on own, if you can. Evolutionary science generally does not endorse any sort of altruism beyond RA, does not fit the model.
    Evolution is wonderful and interesting and true, although more information is coming in about experience, epigenetics , and neuro-development, which will change how we understand evolution, culture and religion.
    America has a unique experience with fundamentalist movements which are actually quite removed from mainstream religions.
    There is no conflict between science and religion, unless it is a created conflict, or an internal personal conflict, or framed as a conflict. There is the problem, Bring it ON..there is the welcome, the invitation to conflict. Now why would you invite conflict instead of inviting dialogue in an open respectful way? Why that leap from conviction to conflict? This is wrong and problematic in all aspects of human life.
    The arrogance is appalling. More educated not religious? Can't be serious.

  323. gsjikwblao

    Yes. Very intelligent and useful observation. Understanding the big picture must account for both science and religion. The conflict seems to arise from an attempt by scientific people to develop reasons for religious beliefs that seem insulting to religious people. Scientific people can avoid this altogether if they are interested in only a small section of the "big picture". However, if a scientist is interested in developing a verifiable understanding of a "first cause" for everything, that which religious people call "God" it seems almost impossible to avoid tension. The characteristics that religious people affix to the "first cause" cannot be verified through experiment. Neither do these characteristics relate to all that follows, to function as a "first cause".
    Or did you mean that they can peacefully co-exist by respectfully ignoring each other? Or by scientists abandoning a search for a "first cause"? Or by religion abandoning the copyright on God?

    Perhaps we can call God one thing and the "first cause" something else. It may sound as if I speak in jest, but if a mathematically based unification was accomplished for the fundamental forces, That is exactly where we would end up.

  324. Jack1952

    A true scientist does not try to disprove the existence of God or any hypothesis. He only asks that it is proven. A scientist believes that nothing should be named as fact until there is proof to back up the claim. That is the dogma of science. It is not fact until proven. If it can be proven that God does exist through scientific reasoning and irrefutable evidence then we will see it taught in all our schools. Until then, the existence of a God is an article of faith. This goes for any idea that is based on a cosmic or religious consciousness.

  325. Jack1952

    @ StillRV

    Actually, I was referring to the scientist creating life in a lab. It seemed an ironic twist to the argument that we've been having. I guess the smirk on my face, when I posted, could not be seen over the computer. I, in no way, believe in a conscious creator.

  326. Eniki520

    sorry it just doesnt make sense to me, just dont see consciousness in non living things.

  327. crispama

    Very beautiful documentaries

  328. crispama

    very impressive and astonishing explanation!!!!

  329. Killin

    Science can explore origins via cosmology and quantum physics as well, I suppose. In any case, it is up to the religious to make sense of scientific discovery. it is not the perogative of science to draw any conclusions about religious beliefs as this is not their domain. They are leaping across intellectual and disciplinary boundaries. It is no different than making inferences about archaelology or history on the basis of scientific knowledge, in my opinion.
    Thanks for your comments, though, well said and important points in both replys.
    I have just been reading about Bonhoeffer whose convictions were so clear and powerful, one can't help being captivated by his story,consdering the world around him at the time, not to mention his ideas about faith versus religion. I cant' really find a secular philosophy that can adequately replace his theology.
    Another story stays with me, which is, you may have heard this , the Jewish concentration camp inmates who, together with their Rabbi, put God on trial, condemned him to death, then promptly went on with their daily prayers! That is perhaps the strongest refutation of atheism one could imagine. it is like saying, yes thanks, been there, done that, moved on. I mean, how does one respond to that depth of communal meaning and devotion?
    MK

  330. Killin

    Jack: Why is evolutionary science in particular posing this question? What is really the agenda here?
    How can any non empirical theory or ideology be proven catagorically? It cannot, and we employ them all the time,, we apply them in fact, particularly in my field, which is mental health/psychiatry. So the natural sciences cannot expect that humanity will behave or believe soley based on the expertise of the latest discovery. As we know these change, are limited and imcomplete, always. Again, science has no perogative to aggressively attempt to disprove faith or challenge believers to scientifically prove their beliefs. In any case, the above video is very limited in its explaination of religion, culturally, historically and intellectually. it is as though evoutionary science in particulary, is designing an ideology of life and culture based on thier own findings, and I think this is actually quite dangerous; to be honest. We still have a problem with the ideas of social Darwinism influcing arguments agains social policy, for example, particularly in the US, but also in Canada and elsewhere. Ev. theory itself is still evolving - cannot offer a fixed or reliable paradigm at this point - for human values or culture or communty, not at all. Nor even on origins, as this video acknowledges in the first place.

  331. Greg_Mc

    @Killin
    I am not a guy who is very knowledgeable on science or overly educated, I have a few college diplomas so it isn't like I am a total idiot. In responding to Jack you made an analogy I didn't understand so I was wondering if you could explain to me the point you were making. One of the things I like about this site is the comment section because I like to discuss things with people and there are a few people who I regularily see commenting on the same vids I watch (we must get the same ones emailed to us) and I learn a lot from reading their comments as well as others. Plus I research some things people comment about to get a further knowledge of various topics. Anyway back to my original point about asking you to explain a point you made (I talk a lot and tend to digress way to much) so here is what you said.

    They are leaping across intellectual and disciplinary boundaries. It is no different than making inferences about archaelology or history on the basis of scientific knowledge, in my opinion.

  332. Jack1952

    @ Killin

    You ask why evolutionary science would ask this question. I have a few ideas that I will run past you. There are two scenarios that can be assumed concerning the religious question.

    The first is that a cosmological entity and creator does exist and this would explain human acknowledgment of this cosmological being. Specific details may be difficult to realize but a generalized acceptance would be expected.

    The second scenario would be that there are no Gods. The intriguing question would then be why did religion become such a strong social force for our species. The overwhelming majority believe in a spirituality of some form or another. If the metaphysical is a human construct there must be a reason for it. Remember, the assumption here is that there are no Gods. It would be logical then, for a scientist to ask if this is an evolutionary process. One does not evaluate all aspects of the human development and psyche but ignore such a powerful force.

    It does seem contradictory for Thomson to posit that religion is a result of human evolution and then draw a line in the sand challenging religious ideas. "Bring it on" implies conflict. You would think that if he believed in his own ideas he would understand that religious people are responding to a biological imperative. A war of words would be futile and his stance could cause any religious person to suspect an agenda.

    Not having any religious beliefs yet coming from a very religious family and background has led me to become a little understanding of their position. It helps that when it comes to religious matters, my family leaves me alone and I try to reciprocate.

  333. tariqxl

    Who, when said that people will mistake a shadow for a burglar but not a burglar for a shadow, didn't actually ponder that for a moment before nodding with a 'hmm' ;)

  334. Bob

    There are two kinds of people in this world, ones who accept other people even though they might think they are doing something wrong, and ones who spend their time trying to persuade people away from their beliefs (people who preach religion or people who preach science), whether that's religious or scientific etc.

    Are you an atheist or a theist? You know what, I don't care and I won't judge you, as long as you live a fulfilling life.

  335. Greg_Mc

    I found your description of the first of your two kinds of people in the world a little ambiguous. When you said "even though they might think they are doing something wrong", what did you mean by "wrong"? Wrong as in they have a different view than you do about science or religion? Or wrong as in something illegal or morally wrong?
    The second type of people (Those Saturday morning cartoon interupting door knocking jehovah's witnesses perhaps, to cover the religious portion of those people. You can make up your own image of a self righteous, messy haired shirt half tucked in scientist type. may as well go for the full bore insulting scientist stereotype lol ) you mention are the generally annoying in need of a date kind of person.

    Your last comment is the way more people need to be.

  336. gsjikwblao

    May it be possible that a consciousness that is non-physical,existing outside time, spawned the creation event 13.7 billion years ago and the causation process that produced life? If so, then we could understand that consciousness did create life. With no time in which to think in a linear fashion, such an intelligence would know all it does similtainously. It may be that all that transpires from the beginning to the end of a cycling universe is the total bank of knowledge contained in such a consciousness . perhaps it could be referred to as "sensitivity without boundry"

  337. wobbliesyd

    Quantum physics has shown that their is no way to observe an experiment without effecting the outcome. This is the purpose of faith and is responsible for the placebo effect. It is true that religion and all it's trappings of ritual and sacrifice have been used by people preparing to lose their lives in brutal acts of aggression. It is also true that these same mechanisms have been used by heros willing to give their lives for peace and freedom with no recourse to violence. Religious zealots give us suicide bombers. Scientists gave us nuclear weapons, and kalishnikoffs.

  338. verseinu

    Quantum physics has shown that their is no way to observe an experiment without effecting the outcome. This is the purpose of faith and is responsible for the placebo effect.

    What does this mean? What is the purpose of faith here?

    Observation affecting the outcome of an experiment refers to the atomic/subatomic world. That effect is not seen on human scales.

    The Placebo effect is a complicated psychological effect that isn't understood.

    I didn't think it was cherry season, but you went out picking none the less.

    It's easy enough to call out the physical damage religion has caused, but we shouldn't forget the mental castration it also encourages.

    Politics can subvert science giving us nukes, just as religion can subvert the mind giving us suicide bombers.

  339. KsDevil

    So, the primal human is pre-programmed with an afinity for mythology which is fought by injecting reality. Thus, to conserve energy, the primal human will always situate with that fundamental state. It is only through exernalized circumstance that the primal human has to seeks it's survival by expending energy to aquire that goal.
    This means conflict is a requirement to evolution and society. Educators can not be kindly but must use directed conflict to stimulate the student to exert the energy required to learn beyond the basic programming of the brain.
    This might explain why generalized conflict in a generalized educational institution does not produce the desired effect.
    This also explains the mindset of those who select generalized education in policy. They, it appears, need directed conflict to stimulate the necessity to survive their positions and aquire the knowledge to make better policy decisions.
    Oh, dear. This is getting to be quite involved. My brain wants to return to it's basic mythological state and sleep.

  340. Epicurus

    all ifs that are supported by probablity. and i responded to your other comment. you must have missed it.

  341. epmoon

    Very interesting video.

  342. Cuneiform

    Agreed! Just as i can't prove aliens exist for lack of one in my possession as it should be! Anyone want to change the criteria for both ?

  343. Killin

    Is science a shining light in the darkness? I'm not so sure. The error of scientists is in assuming that the purity of scientic findings is beyond the reach of human fallibility. Anyone with the very least knowledge of 20th century history, must certainly be skeptical about the truth claims of science.The following quote is only one of many obvious false conslusions and disasterous outcomes led -or fed -at least, by the irrefutable claims of science. (Most of us, I contend, will not forget the implications of elitist, racist and facist thinking attached to Darwinsim. This surperior and oppressive posture not exactly well hidden in the above video.)

    " Schleunes (1970) notes that racism came into scientific repute through its solid link with the “third great synthesis of the Nineteenth Century,” the Darwinian theory of evolution and the survival of the fittest world view.

    These “scientific” views about race that then existed in the western world, especially Nazi Germany, were clearly evident even in America, as is apparent from surveys of textbooks published from 1880 to 1940. Princeton Professor Edwin Conklin (1921, 34) said in one of his texts that"

    [Comparison of any modern race with the Neanderthal or Heidelberg types shows that… Negroid races more closely resemble the original stock than the white or yellow races. Every consideration should lead those who believe in the superiority of the white race to strive to preserve its purity and to establish and maintain the segregation of the races…

    Soon after the American Supreme Court ruled that sterilization of minorities was legal, Adolf Hitler’s cabinet, using the American work as an example, passed a eugenic sterilization law in 1933. The German law was compulsory to all people]
    I can supply the refernce, just lost it briefly as I am writing.

  344. Killin

    Greg,
    I didn't reply to your earllier question about crossing interdisciplinary boundaries. I meant that theology and evolutionary biology are separate disciplines and the critiques, on both sides actually, are sometimes not too scholarly or respectful. Bio evol would not attack anthropolgy as a discipline or its methodology, but might question a specific arguement. On the other hand, sometimes basic definintions are different, like definintions for altruism across disciplines, making it difficult to compare findings. Just a thought.

  345. Killin

    LOL - good sense of humour G

  346. Jack1952

    @ Cuneiform

    We can assume that aliens do exist because we exist. That is not proof but it is a logical assumption. It's opening a can of worms but using the scientific method, they do not exist. To use an example; scientists realized it was logical to assume there were planets in other solar systems, by using our solar system as their benchmark. They would not state it as fact until those planets were discovered and the evidence of their existence was irrefutable. Now we know that planets exist in other solar systems. We can now assume that some of these planets hold life but as of yet we have no proof. Metaphorically speaking, we do not have possession of an alien, yet. We have to say they do not exist although the likelihood of their existence is highly probable. A cosmic entity does not have the assumption of existence because we cannot, categorically, prove the existence of even one such being.

    You use an excellent example although I suspect that you were being facetious. If I am wrong, I apologize.

  347. MARK

    Over the last 152 years there have been 10+ schools of thought trying to Darwinise culture and they have all failed in generating an accepted theory of culture. As long as that is the case then culture and human mind will remain beyond the explanatory capacity of evolutionary theory. So this lecture is more narrative, couched in what is plausible but it is only assertion bolstered by narrative that might sway you if you hold a particular world view.

    The reality is that there is no settled scientific theory of culture and certainly none from the evolutionary perspective. They've tried 10+ schools of thought so clearly its a question worth asking and hopefully answering. Religion is a cultural phenomenon and there are only two ways that evolutionary theory can explain religion:
    1. overextension of Darwinian and neo-Darwinian thinking.
    2. a relaxing of the usual standards we associate with science, especially good science.

    If anyone seriously thinks the arguments portrayed here represent deep, critical thinking and experimentation we associate with science rooted in a general theory of culture they are sadly mistaken. The current milieu may well nudge opinion like this online and into books but subject to the serious test of time what we have here is packaged opinion and the last time I looked the science method was looking for something more than head-nodding plausibility.

    At a time Richard Dawkins' latest book tries to 'spin' scientific reality as reality itself we could all do with taking a moment and reflecting on the lasting failure of evolutionary theory to generate an accepted theory of culture, while claiming that 'religion' has in some way been worked out. The social sciences seek an understanding of culture at the law, even equation level in an attempt to go beyond narrative. This lecture never breaks free of narrative and is all the poorer for it.

  348. MARK

    The reason I believe in God is because I think it is a deep truth about how the world works. I am a vociferous reader across the physical, natural and social sciences and the idea that people believe in God just because our imagination can't create anything better is more of an indication of how you have hoovered up opinions from elsewhere, rather than critically think through the issues yourself. It can be quite exhausting, so no wonder people 'settle' (like yourself) for fables and hearsay about people of faith.

    It is a deep historical fact that not only were people of faith involved in science, but they were at the very cutting edge of science. I've lost count of the number of shallow, under-read anti-theists who when cornered in an argument fall back on Occam's Razor not even realising they are using the reasoning of a Franciscan Friar. It's quite funny.

    The Bible sets out a layered process of creation and that has been endorsed by scientific findings. The Bible ("let their be light") had the original big bang theory when mainstream science was all steady state. If you are really open minded then ponder on a few of these points.
    1. Evolutionary theory has explanatory power for all of life in the nature setting apart from humans in the artificial setting of the town and the urban. It's worth recalling that Darwin's first chapter of 'Origin' was on human (man's methodical) artificial selection, from which he metaphorised the process of 'natural selection' in nature. It is a total inversion of history and reasoning to then reframe artificial selection through the lens of the metaphorised process.
    2. The two words most associated with God are 'creator' and 'designer'. If humankind were 'of' God then they would have to exhibit (they would have to) some of these qualities. The social world of humankind is made up of trillions and trillions of artifacts. Indeed, it's only a first rung awareness that humans are designers, it's a deeper import than they can't stop designing. Dawkins and Dennett both lecture and interview that humans "are the only/first intelligent designers on the tree of life".
    3. Dawkins thinks that multiple expressions of God (Zeus, Thor, etc) undermine the idea of God. It's worth noting that Dawkins is a failed author of a culture theory (memetics) so critically minded people should be hesitant to any claimed insight into the realms of religion and culture from Dawkins, especially following some of his comments on the recent BBC 'Great Thinkers' series: "In humans the brain has taken over in such a big way that it becomes positively misleading to try to attempt to explain human behaviour in a simple-minded, naive vehicle for the genes kind of way."
    Richard has made a career from this now discredited view. The human brain and it's over-capacity in evolutionary terms is evidence of what we can call 'super-variation' in evolutionary terms and evidence for people of faith for God nudging the process along.
    Even Dawkins' own colleagues write about the level of difference humans are compared to the rest of the living world. In his 2011 book 'The Believing Brain' Michael Shermer writes:

    "Historical experiment after experiment reveals the same answer: we are a fluke of nature, a quirk of evolution, a glorious contingency."

    So if we are quirks and flukes of the evolutionary process (and culture and human mind remain beyond evolution's explanatory capacity) then how can evolution seemingly seamlessly explain our thoughts and actions, like the lecturer is trying to do in this video? It's narrative. It may be sciencey-sounding but I would urge you to critically think through the notion that is is pseudo-sciencey sounding.

    If you, or anyone think that people of faith can't be critical of thought then you are under read on The Bible itself:

    "Do not put out the Spirit's fire. Do not treat prophecies with contempt but test them all; hold on to what is good, reject whatever it harmful." [1 Thessalonians 5:19-22]

    If you feel persuaded by Dawkins & Co going on about talking snakes and zombies then you are free to believe that. However, this is from a man who has a generally poor track record on culture and one failed theory in his CV on culture: memetics. He's in good company there, because there have been a few failures from the evolutionary perspective. However, the idea that people of faith are simple-minded is itself a simple-minded notion that overlooks the reality of the science we have today being enabled in significant part by/from people of faith.

    '...test them all' Test/experiment are the ultimate standards of good science and its something Christians are urged to do, not in the Old Testament with Richard's cherry picking of talking snakes but in the New Testament, and right at the end of the New Testament as well.

  349. Cuneiform

    Religion is for fools and there have been many "It is far easier to fool someone then it is to admit being fooled" and so it can be said of all those whom have fallen for the religion lie!

  350. MARK

    If you are a genuine truth seeker then you'll be alarmed by a number of things from this video. While the summary tries to paint Thomson as some objective, impartial voice on theism/atheism the truth is quite different. He is a Trustee of Richard Dawkins Foundation and his praise of Dennett, Harris and near-gushing praise of Dawkins has no, or little place on a platform for serious scientific discussion.

    He's a psychiatrist and the single greatest discovery in the field of psychiatry wasn't by Charles Darwin but by Sigmund Freud who discovered the unconscious mind. Darwin said the mind of humans and animals was different in degree not in kind and this is difficult to reconcile with the ability for the human mind to go out "and conquer the world" in Thomson's own words. Daniel Dennett wrote a book once, not called 'Degrees of Mind' but 'Kinds of Minds' and there is a simple and lasting truth that when it comes to the human mind and the culture it enables that in turn broadens minds, it is beyond the explanatory capacity of evolutionary theory.

    Thomson skirts over important areas connecting not with science by words, mere narrative and when he comes up against a seeming hurdle, no bother, more words will get him around the problem, especially when it comes to pesky issues like writing, reading, music and religion. He can't explain them fully or scientifically tell you about their origins so he puts them down to 'byproducts'. Now if anyone here is persuaded by his use, over use and abuse of 'byproduct' as a term then you could do with more reading on this. Writing, reading, music and religion are major components in what makes up culture(s) all around the world and the key thing is that Thomson:
    1. didn't say they came about by natural selection, which is important for his entire evolutionary argument, and
    2. to refer to byproducts remains unconvincing and makes this lecture look like he is preaching to the choir rather than a rigorous scientific lecture beyond narrative.

    On music he 'narrates' that music came about because of the rhythms of our heart. This is garbage, total folk-evolutionary psychology, and the kind of 'just so' story that Stephen Jay Gould warned against, and what Steve Jones (Professor of Genetics) cautioned as 'evolutionary theology'. So it's all evolution, apart from the parts we can't explain and we'll put them down as 'byproducts'.

    Thomson has said in the past "There is a massive, irreconcilable conflict between science and religion." He is entitled to his opinion but the idea that this agenda-laden talk to like-minded atheists from a Trustee of Richard Dawkins Foundation represents good science is a source of incredulity. This is yet another human expression telling one side of the story, and a rather poor telling at that.

    The evolutionary process is not about the adaptation of problem solving devices, it is about the assimilation of different body parts and changes arising out of random variation over geological time. Adaptation is a Lamarckian-loaded term that allows Thomson to talk about the evolutionary process as purpose, another literary trick, but it doesn't get over the fact that for all his talking, there remains no settled theory of human mind and certainly no settled theory of culture from the evolutionary perspective despite 10+ schools of thought on this. Thomson is quiet on this, as he is quiet on other pressing questions.

    If anyone seriously believes that the diverse spectrum of human musical expression arose by the listening to our heart rhythms then they are lost to the same mythological theology that Thomson accuses of faith. This is very poor stuff indeed. In 1999 Dennett gave a lecture where he thought music came from our ancestors tapping away and it built from there. This is:
    1. pure conjecture,
    2. a different 'just so' story from Thomson, and
    3. not a Darwinian process, but a Lamarckian learning process.

    I'll leave you with the words of Dennett himself at the end of his book 'Darwin's Dangerous Idea: Evolution and the Meanings of Life' (1995:521)
    "I urge caution alongside the enthusiasm I hope I have kindled in you. I have learned from my own embarrassing experience how easy it is to concoct remarkably persuasive Darwinian explanations that evaporate under closer inspection. The truly dangerous aspect of Darwin's idea is its seductiveness. Second-rate versions of the fundamental ideas continue to bedevil us, so we must keep a close watch, correcting each other as we go."

    There is plenty of room for correction in this video but with closed-minds on both sides of the argument I don't see Dawkins, Dennett & Co rushing in to correct Thomson on some very clear and pretty deep howlers. Poor stuff. If you think this stuff is anything remotely convincing then you need to change your name from 'truthseeker' to 'convenienceseeker'.

  351. Truthseeker420

    Thank you, you've illustrated my point beautifully.

  352. NAND Gate

    If you didn't quote from a 2000+ year old book written by goat herders, I might attempt to take you seriously. But I can't. Sorry. Truths require facts.

  353. NAND Gate

    Cheers, Vlatko. Excellent comment. Frankly I don't currently have the energy to counter this ignorance - but the fact is SOMEONE has to do it. Leaving crap like this unanswered in "public" spaces is a "sin" - so thanks.

    Religion is nothing more than a result of the psychology of the individual - something unique, not shared by others and completely free of annoying things like "facts" - such as evolution.

  354. NAND Gate

    Athiesm doesn't discount the possibility of external beings to our visible universe. It doesn't discount anything. Not even evolution discounts the possibility.

    But that is not the point. I have my own internal "suspicions" about the cosmological nature of the universe - but they are irrelevant to the discussion of "god" and theism, and I cannot yet discount the possibility that they are a product of my own psychology. If I have no proof, then what I "suspect" is irrelevant to an objective discussion of a topic that deals with ontologies.

    One simply has to submit to the irrefutable semantics of the debate: a claim of truth requires proof. In the history of mankind, not a single theist has ever been able to offer proof of their claim. Not one. Ever. And that, my friends, is that.

  355. NAND Gate

    You clearly are not aware that Hitler believed in God, and was born and raised Catholic. Look it up.

  356. verseinu

    Well said!

    It's the reason why science and religion are not two sides of the same coin. They are two fundamentally different 'beasts'. Religion and philosophy - maybe, religion and science - nope.

  357. MARK

    You make the rather naive statement that Atheism doesn't discount the possibilty of external beings which completely overlooks this video as not only pseudo-science but a clearly agenda laden piece cobbling together a piece here, a half-truth there, a child-lie understanding of evolution, expressing process as purpose with a misleading title suggesting Thomson is a some kind of moderate. he is a psychiatrist and the last time I looked they were no authorities on the evolutionary process. He's not the only psychiatrist trying to pass off pseudo-science as something more credible, 'Genes, Memes, Culture, and Mental Illness' - Hoyle Leigh.

    Just to be clear, you are saying that proof is required and I agree. By your own statement then the clear direction in academic and research biology towards systems models away from gene-centrist models is proof that Richard (along Ed Wilson and others) got caught up in the 'destiny in dna' cultural bandwagon. Furthermore, Richard's crude cut & paste 'memetics' with no journal, not even an online journal consigns this pseudo-science to dogma, again if we are using proof in the real world as evidence.

    This video is proof that neo-Darwinian theology is alive and well. There is no settled theory of culture from the evolutionary perspective. Fact. There have been 10+ schools of thought (including RD's pseudo-science 'memetics') so they've had a good. That's important because culture is our second nature, and the primary source of our experience in the world around us. It becomes even more important when we look at how it enables the control we see over the social world which we design and create and our ability to shape the natural and physical worlds. So culture, in large part, remains a mystery for Thomson, Dawkins and many others which makes their seeming confidence when talking about religion all the more bemusing. The 'truth' is this confidence is misplaced. The way Thomson skirts over developments that are perhaps the most staggering in the history of the universe is quite breathtaking, and than pretty sad, even pathetic. Human reading, writing, music and religion can't be explained by the evolutionary process he says so he cobbles together cherry-picked items and half-truths, couched in evolutionary language to make 'a' case which he tries to sell as science. Classic pseudo-science, which is even worse when you take on board his agenda which is on the record as anti-theism.

    Proof of God. You could open your eyes and mind a little more. If you think closed minds are just for people of faith then you are lost to the world of critical thinking.

    1. It is an anthropological given that where you find people(s) and culture(s) you find faith and belief in a God(s) and/or deities. This God(s) will be expressed through the knowledge in time and place through conversational mediums/means at the tribes/communities' disposal. Multiple expressions of God(s) like Zeus, Thor, etc don't undermine the idea of God but they do show Richard's poor understanding of how culture works. Again, we are the only species from 100s of millions of different species and Darwin himself called it a 'universal' and when we are taking the universal amongst humans, and contrasting that with the absence among all the other 100s of millions of kinds of species over the evolutionary process that is at the very least interesting for the critical thinking person.

    2. There is an issue which I won't dwell on too much where you (and others) think they have the right to question, and even second guess God. I think it is good to question and I've already quoted from The Bible that it encourages you to test scripture so that's cool but there is an assumption that humans have reached such a level of awareness that they can talk about having discounted God when there is so much we don't know. If you take the God idea seriously (and the critical mind has to before he/she discounts it) then God would be the biggest and most profound of awarenesses. Science, despite its strengths has deep weaknesses as well. Evolution is good on biological and botanical change over the course of life on earth but it remains only partial theory towards a general theory of nature, so there's plenty of room for improvement for science and human knowledge there. In the physical sciences Stephen Hawking, after decades of searching for the theory of everything now advocates 'model dependent realism' so perhaps Richard's new book should have been called 'The Magic of Realities'? I've already mentioned the difficulties that science has with the human condition and culture. And yet there is a misplaced arrogance in dismissing the idea of God which by definition has to be beyond all of these levels of knowledge that science has been unable to breach. I'm not saying you should believe in God, that is a personal matter. My criticism is in shallow, under-read anti-theism which is pretty easy to identify and undermine.

    3. The two terms most associated with God are 'designer' and 'creator'. If humans were truly 'of' God then they would have to (have to) exhibit some form of creative and designing capacity that could not be accounted for by the dominant theory accounting for all other life, and that is indeed the case. Evolutionary theory (sorry to hark on, but its the truth) cannot explain why humans create and design, and this is something that Dawkins and Dennett lecture and interview on. They both accept that humans "are the only/first intelligent designers on the tree of life", and that should not be taken that I have any sympathy for intelligent design as an approach, I do not. A tree of life that consists of 100s of millions of different species. If you, or anyone is not getting a difference of dimension here then you could do with googling 'critical thinking' and having a wee catch-up on that term.
    It's not that humans can create and design, we can't stop We have designed an entire world of structure and system (society/culture) which Darwin himself wrote evolution couldn't explain. He said that natural selection was "much diminished in civilised societies" and yet listening to Thomson (through narrative alone) its all one seamless story, if you are seduced by this narrative, which is not science. So with most humans living in the social world of society and culture, made up of trillions of artifacts its worth reminding that science is one of those human artifacts. There remains a paradox between thinkers like Richard who stress on the one-hand our complete union with all of life and then reify science, which is only one human artifact among trillions. We're part of the living world for sure but culture is different in dimension from the natural world, different but not detached. As a christian, and a working research scientist, only an awareness of this difference and then taking control of our control over the living world can address the deep problems we see with human impact on the living world. Narrating over this difference (which is no science) creating an artificial harmony only gives legitimation to industrial companies who can simply shrug their shoulders and say "hey, what we're doing is natural, ask Richard Dawkins". I don't say it's natural and we can look at other human artifacts and see every minute of every day nature says 'no' and humans over-ride and say 'yes'. That is not God that makes fMRIs, satellites, and bionic hearts but I believe that there is evidence that totally endorses the view that humans are 'of' God.

    4. Personal experience. I can say to you and others that I have personal and powerful experience of God. I get it that you don't believe in God. I didn't believe in God for almost 37 of my 41 years so I am well aware of how that sounds. However, I am a real truth seeker and I'm not put off by any scorn and derision that usually follows statements like 'I've experienced God'. As to why I have and you maybe haven't I don't know why that is. All I can tell you is that it does reset beliefs you have before, but that doesn't mean that humans can't understand the structure and system of the worlds, indeed the universe around us. Richard thinks there is a magic to reality and so do people of faith. If you think that cobbled together 'just so' stories, elevation of science to near faith levels and a discounting of God, just because you say so, is convincing then you are giving too much weight to your opinion. Not science, an opinion.

    5.Its important to realise that Dawkins has also compared humans with God as well and so has Darwin. Looking back there is nothing in the evolutionary story that can be used as a baromoter for human creative and design power. In A Devil's Advocate Richard wrote that humans have "the gift" of foresight and the ability to "internalise the very cosmos" and that is something evolutionary theory can say very little about. Evolution is a reactive process, with no foresight and is really one of assimilation rather than adaptation which is a more Lamarckian term. In 2005 at the end of his TED speech Richard referred to humans as 'god-like' and he shares this with Darwin who concluded 'The Descent of Man' writing about human 'god-like intellect' as well as stating our 'lowly origins' and in this I totally agree with Darwin that the living world takes a long time to get going and happe, before 'god-like intellect' emerges and is able to extend from the evolutionary process into the new phase of Cultural Expression, not cultural evolution because evolution is not all kinds of change but a specific kind of change. Edward O. Wilson (Sociobiology) also adheres to this level of difference at times. He writes about the four pillars of social evolution with only humans on the fourth pillar, more exceptionalism. Its more exceptionalism that evolutionary theory cannot explain. Wilson has been through quite a journey on humans, Sociolobiology was short, so he came back with On Human Nature which was short so he came back with Gene-Culture Co-evolution and this was still short. He has went on to say that the social sciences need to generate a theory of culture and this is very, very significant. Through the physical, natural and social sciences we have three epistemological spectrums. One deals with the physical universe, another deals with nature as the earth system and the other, an entire epistemological spectrum devoted to one species, humans across the social sciences, arts and humanities.

    6. The Bible does have some incredible stories inside it, no question but I've already stated that it encourages the reader to 'test' so the idea that The Bible has to be digested without thinking is a myth and one that Richard is good at promulgating. The output from theoretical physics in recent years puts The Bible to shame. A favourite was an article trying to explain why the Higgs had not been detected at the LHC and this was because in another universe it had been detected and the consequences were so grave that it came back in time to stop the LHC in our time from locating the Higgs. I'm certainly no Biblical literalist but before 'science-minded' people point out apparent absurdities through religion I would say this is an issue with any large socially organised body of humans, and that applies to science as well. Have you heard about Universal Darwinism? Richard and Co have tried to explain 'away' the complexity of the Universe by using their crude template for all reality: natural selection. Nothing could be more vulgar for a real truth seeker. Smolin's NS of Universes, Dawkins' memetics and even Edelman's (although he is not UD adherent) 'Neural Darwinism' are all reminders that dogma exists where people exist and its especially worse if people like Richard act as pantheons against dogma.

    There are more points and I'm more than aware I'm typing to a tough crowd here. I have a thought and I'm able to communicate that globally within seconds. There is nothing over the course of evolution that explains that, certainly not the rigours of science. Vernadsky coined the term 'biosphere' and also the 'noosphere' which de Chardin picked up and developed more. Taking on board all the networked technologies there are and the ability for humans to share views and opinions there is without question a 'technoosphere' of shared human consciousness out there. That is a technological marvel, and how does Richard and his colleagues view that? They say they are 'tools' and that animals also make 'tools' and we are all the same. Simple. Indeed such reasoning is simple and totally unscientific and far from reason.

    I'll leave you with this one lasting thought and that is being a human is not a science-level awareness, and on that Charles Darwin would totally agree with me. He wrote that the heart of a man of science was cold because good science is forensic and dispassionate. I think when Richard is on his game and communicating about the world(s) around us its infectious and good viewing. For people of faith its more fascinating because we can look on in awe at the structure and system through all the universe and God (at mysterious levels beyond our awareness) enables all of that. You can wonder about all the structure and system but not the awe of God and an awareness that we are 'of' that intelligence. So I think you are missing out on that, but my main point here is that there is evidence that humans are 'of' God and the very fact people refer to science (one of trillions of human artifacts) as an argument against God completely overlooks the dimension of human creative and designing power that enables us, in the words of Richard himself "to internalise the very cosmos."

  358. MARK

    That is a tired point. Richard brushes off criticism of Stalin by saying that Stalin didn't kill and murder in the name of atheism, and the same should apply to your argument. If not, you have double standards.

    There is a chain between Ernst Haeckel, the man who took Darwinism into Germany and the thinking that motivated Hitler. There is no question that some of the language and arguments used in 'The Descent of Man' were welcome at the time, but when dealing with culture you need to be aware that time and meaning (human communicative causation) are interwoven, so milieu is our environment. For you to suggest that Hitler embarked on Holocaust because he was a person of faith is quite ridiculous and only makes you look like you are reaching and have literally nothing to offer.

    In modern times, over the industrial age nationalism, imperialism and colonialism as identifiers have caused more death than religion. If you can't see how a crude 'survival of the fittest' framing of humans, and the dogma of superior races from Haeckel's interpretation of Darwin's work into Germany influenced Hitler and others then you are lost.

    Darwin wrote about indigenous people from South America as if they were a different species, using the terms 'savages', 'barbarians' and even 'half-humans'. Would I call Darwin a racist? Absolutely not. I would cut him some cultural slack and I hope you would to. Herein lies a problem though with you/others cutting CD some cultural slack and yet being overly literal with The Bible written an order of magnitude previously, and it being a spiritual book not a scientific one.

    If you think anything you have written so far displays a knock-out blow for reason and science in dealing with matters of faith then you are sadly mistaken.

  359. MARK

    Is memetics science then? Or is it pseudo-science borne out of a misplaced faith that natural selection (metaphorised from artificial selection) can explain all phenomena in the universe? This would make it a theology, and we can see similar errors in UD (Universal Darwinism) that we can see in ID (Intelligent Design).

    Science is good with the forensic, but is not good with feeling. It can't tell you why you cry at some songs (its okay we're human) and love has the power to lift your heart, or break your heart. Good with the mechanics, poor on the meaning. That's important because the human experience is one that is meaningful.

    You say that science and religion are fundamentally different, that is your view, an opinion and nothing weightier. Take the most recent trial pitting evolution against science. Who was the lead plaintiff witness? Dawkins? No, it was Kenneth R. Miller, Professor of Biology at Brown University, one of the world's most effective debunkers of intelligent design and a practicing Catholic.

    We could agree broadly on the structure and system of the Universe from a scientific point of view but while I have experience and belief in God behind and even through that process you are stuck with selling an 'everything from nothing' narrative. Good luck with that.

  360. Vlatko

    @MARK,

    You make the rather naive statement that Atheism doesn't discount the possibilty of external beings which completely overlooks this video as not only pseudo-science but a clearly agenda...

    Atheism indeed doesn't discount the possibility of external beings. It discounts the possibility of beings described in the scriptures. There is a huge difference there. This video is only one possible answer to why people believe in Gods. No one says IT IS the answer.

    ...Richard's crude cut & paste 'memetics' with no journal, not even an online journal consigns this pseudo-science to dogma, again if we are using proof in the real world as evidence.

    The same applies here. Memetics is not the definitive answer of how and why people pass their beliefs through generations. It is one possible answer and at this moment is not generally accepted. If overwhelmed with evidence IT WILL BE accepted.

    Classic pseudo-science, which is even worse when you take on board his agenda which is on the record as anti-theism.

    OK what is the AGENDA? Simple anti-theism? Why? Have you asked yourself that? Why these people bother doing these things? There is no agenda, people are just trying to make sense of it.

    You're religious and that is fine, no problem. In a nutshell, from what I understand, you prescribe to God as an entity which manifests through humans, and their beliefs interwoven in thousands of scriptures, embedded into the diversity of human culture.

    If that is so, religious people on this planet are in a huge disagreement of what God actually is or is not. The notion of supernatural in humans is splattered across the planet in various forms. From a super collective cosmic consciousness to a white bearded man sitting on a cloud.

    Just Google these two words: "Cargo Cults".

  361. verseinu

    @MARK

    You say that science and religion are fundamentally different, that is your view, an opinion and nothing weightier. Take the most recent trial pitting evolution against science. Who was the lead plaintiff witness? Dawkins? No, it was Kenneth R. Miller, Professor of Biology at Brown University, one of the world's most effective debunkers of intelligent design and a practicing Catholic.

    You can call it my opinion, but it isn't an opinion in the same sense that it is my opinion Pearl Jam kick a$&. It is a purely subjective stance, the same stance that one holds when talking about god. There is no external manifestation of my belief in Pearl Jam's kick a$&sedness, just as there is no external manifestation of god. It is merely a belief with no way to qualify it. A belief (faith) is, just because one has the experience of it. This is the basis of knowledge for religion upon which all the dogma is based. With religion there is no grounding in reality.

    Science, with the dogma that is present, is based off of theories tested against observation. There is some amount of confidence to make a claim that (for example) evolution is an accurate description of the development of complex life forms, because observations continue to fall within its descriptive power. My opinion that evolution is accurate is not the same as my opinion about Pearl Jam.

    Science is weighted differently from religion based on its testing against reality. The two are fundamentally different in their respective methods of building knowledge. Science seeks to discover conclusions and religion starts off from a conclusion. They may claim similar ends, but how they achieve those ends are fundamentally different.

    I see Kenneth Miller as support for my argument rather than against. The fact that he is able to section off his religious belief and focus on the validity of the science, shows that he is able reconcile the fact that science is not the appropriate approach to support a belief in god. Is he implicitly stating that religious belief doesn't need the support of reality....I don't know, but that is my opinion.

    I want to step in line with Vlatko & Psinet here. I discount the biblical god, but am open to the possibility of an external being (whatever that means). Again - but, until the time we are swimming in the evidence of this being I will live my life as if it isn't there. Though, admittedly, the warm emotional fuzzies are seductive.

  362. MARK

    Wow, you need to read what you write before you post. Kenneth R. Miller is an authority on the evolutionary process, a vocal and skilled debunker of intelligent design and a practicing Catholic. You say that he is evidence of what? That you think he is able to section of religious belief from science? It looks like you are sectioning off stuff rather than the face the reality of Miller's position. I think it is a healthy position and its one similar to my own.

    Your Pearl Jam example is unconvincing. We're not talking about finding peoples across time and place with a Universal position on Pearl Jam. Darwin (The Descent of Man) wrote it himself, he called it a Universal that where you find people(s) and culture(s) you find faith. This agenda-laden, dogma from Thomson the psychiatrist lightly dances over big stuff like where did writing come from, reading and music before sharing his pseudo-science opinion with us.

    Seriously, I'm not trying to convince anyone that God is real, that is a personal matter. My beef is with the shallow, under-read anti-theism. There is something culturally faddy about it but the idea that psychiatrists are qualified to speak expertly on the evolutionary process from the perspective of science, or that people with an equally pseudo-reputation on culture (Dawkins' memetics) while trying to root their opinion as science, I find that quite vulgar

    The Biblical God is an expression of God in time and place. The New Testament and a refocusing of ten commandments down to a sharper focus on two is for me (and this is my view) a sign of a listening God and a book (and this is difficult for Bibles) to move with the times. At the end of the day if my kids don't believe in God but live their life as good people I'll more than settle for that because my deeper understanding of history and culture tells me that those values are not held in the gene, but emerge, are made and maintained by shared relationships between people.

    For the record, the whole Pearl Jam thing kind of passed me by, but that fuzzy feeling you get flowing throw your being hen you listen to music, enjoy it. It's very human.

  363. MARK

    Your comments on memetics do nothing to hide it is pure pseudo-science, which is pretty poor considering the author of the theory sets himself up as some pantheon of science. Certainly on culture Richard has been found wanting time and time again. Ideas are passed on, big deal there is no insight there. Sociology and social science have been on the case of ideas, ideology and ideals for some time and they are epistemological custodians of social world phenomena. What we don't need are half-baked, 11 page (see'The Selfish Gene') announcing to the world that you have a theory of culture when all you've done is cut & paste your own increasingly discredited gene-centrist view of the evolutionary process and slap it down on a neighbouring domain. That is not science, but faith.

    Richard knows it himself and on p.112 of 'The Extended Phenotype' he lists 4 cast iron reasons why memes (a rebranding of 'ideas' to make them sound like 'genes' - Richard writes this in his footnotes) can never be considered like genes. You clearly haven't done the reading in this area and your defence (seemingly knee-jerk) makes you look like a follower who'll defend first, and defend second.....and so on and so forth. By any measure memetics is not a science and for this pseudo-science to come from Dawkins only undermines his position and credibility on culture because he took a crude short cut in 1976 and it caught up with him. Near the bottom of p.112 of 'The Extended Phenotype' he writes that he doesn't want to discuss culture anymore because he had not done the requisite reading. For an undergraduate this is poor but for someone who would go on to become the Simonyi Professor for the Public Understanding of Science, this is shameful.

    RD, like others has at times an unwavering belief and faith in natural selection to explain everything, even though it is a metaphorised process from human artificial selection. UD (Universal Darwinism) is not a position of science, it is a position of hope which I find disagreeable because it follows a similar pattern we can see in ID (Intelligent Design). If you are seriously arguing that memetics is not a pseudo-science then you are out of your depth on this issue.

    I won't go on to talk about the filtering prism that is the human mind because you don't seem to grasp what minds do. Human minds 'seem' the world around them. Humans engage with the world through an interwoven fabric of meaning and time making the human condition a dynamic, chaotic lens of relativity. There are as many understandings of God as there are people and I think you are confusing god with a program and human minds with billions of the same computer. If you think that the diverse cultural expression(s) of God over time and place undermines the idea of God then you are light on culture, which is something you share with Richard.

    It seems to me that you can't take on board that with culture Richard has been very wrong, dogmatic which is all the more surprising considering his advocation of reason and science, of which memetics is neither. You don't believe in God, I get that, but clearly you believe in Richard and certainly on memetics that faith is misplaced.

    p.s. I thought your summary of my position was pretty good, thanks

  364. Hesusa

    You sure wright long posts. Your argument as I understand it rests on the premisse that because we have culture and are designers we must be a product of a christian god. Now I am not a follower of Dawkins and am not familiar with his theories but i like you have also formed an opinion why we have culture.
    First of all what is culture? I would say it is a set of traditions and morals a group of people identifies with. Like many species we are social animals. Without this trait we would not be here today. Our intelligence is a process of evolution. If you disagree I wonder what stance do you have? How did we come about? Did your god form Adam in his own image from sand and breathed through his nostriles the gift of life or do you have your own theory? I am eager to hear it.

    With these two traits (intelligence and social behaviour) that our species possesed culture emerged. It had to. One of the main driving forces of culture was hierarchy and specialisation. With the arrival of hierarcy first real cultures began. First cities formed. Urbanism developed. Before there were only proto cultures that had tribal way of life. Specialisation drove progress but also demanded that we cooperate because everybody else has to do their job so you can do yours. Benefits from this are obvious now as they were then. Culture slowly developed through millenia. The way you state it complexe culture was there from the start. It wasn´t.

    PS
    Was it because of a woman that you converted from a heathen to a tormented christian with deamons and have to take it out on us? She is not worth it man. Ah and as for why we design things - layziness, necessity and intelligence all play a role.

  365. NAND Gate

    You realise no one even reads you massive tirades, right?

  366. NAND Gate

    Dude - give up. In this environment, you are soundly beaten. Hanging on to your psychological beliefs in the face of science does you no favours. Your long-winded rants just demonstrate that there is no hope trying to teach someone who is religiously indoctrinated.

    Take it to a Sunday School where you can brainwash people who have no ability to sceptically analyse your illogical and unscientific claims. Because that is the only institution dedicated to such indoctrination, and contains the only audience where you have a real chance of permanently brainwashing them - namely the innocent children.

    BTW, it is very clear that ideas are subject to the same processes of evolution as genes. Evolution is not a localised idea or limited to biology - even matter is subject to it, which is how life was first formed. Care to disagree with that and out yourself as a closet creationist?

  367. NAND Gate

    yap yap yap

    I can usually say what I want in 100 words or less.

  368. NAND Gate

    My God is the only God, and you will see that this is the "truth" by the volume and length of my words!!!!!!!

    Fear my lengthy volume-ness!!!

  369. NAND Gate

    Lol total intelligence fail. Atheism does not try to disprove god.

    YOU may know little, but I know a lot. Accept that.

  370. NAND Gate

    @Tyler Quote: "Your statement is logically sound, and understood entirely. However, my position is not to conclude that the elephant does not exist--only that it is highly implausible."

    Ok that settles that useless waste of time. You are an atheist.

  371. Achems_Razor

    All that I am reading into your extensive verbal rant is nothing but verbal diarrhea, trying to prove a point by the length of your double-talk mixed up post, of you basically saying, there is a god and what i am saying is true, so you have to believe me because I have said so, is a post hoc ergo proter hoc leading to prima facie supposition.

  372. verseinu

    I know who Kenneth Miller is and the fact he is a believer is irrelevant. The fact remains, religion and science are fundamentally different.

    My point about Pearl Jam was just to show that the validity of my claim about how good they are is beyond any measure of observation (no matter how many people may agree or disagree), I can only support my claim by saying so. The validity of my claim is solely based on the fact that I say it is such. The same goes for religion.

    We're not talking about finding peoples across time and place with a Universal position on Pearl Jam.

    Yes we are....that's the point. There is no Universal position on Pearl Jam, and there is no Universal position on god. Religion say's there is, but that's all they've got to go on. The argument boils down to 'it is, because I say so'.

    All this talk of religion and science being fundamentally different is not anti-theistic. It is keeping religion in its proper place within historical, cultural, and literary discussion. Religion should not be given the same weight as science in the pursuit of knowledge.

    I will find immense enjoyment in music, and knowledge that the 'fuzzy feeling flowing through my being' is probably created in my brain doesn't diminish the joy.

  373. MARK

    Tirade? You're in good company here. Seemingly unable to respond to a single point (that's if your twitter mind capacity managed it past the first paragraph) you put my words down to a tirade. Clearly I have a better grasp of history than you and with you so closed-minded to points other than your own you are a very good example of belief, even blind faith in areas that claim to be science.

    I say claim to be science because most of the content coming from your position is pretty tired stuff. Don't worry though, I certainly don't hold you or your buddies here a representing science in any credible way. Tirade? That's funny, how sensitive of you.

  374. MARK

    I have no difficulty in believing that you can convey every idea you have in 100 words or less. I can only hope that one day you'll manage past a pamphlet and manage a full book one day, and not just a colouring in one. Go for it, it's very rewarding. Might I suggest 'Darwin' by Moore & Desmond. There are a lot of pages but there's a lot of detail in there as well. Along the way you'll see how real science is done, not the pseudo-science in this video, or from Richard's memetics dogma.

    Good luck, I'm genuinely cheering for you, and for your mind. It might hurt a little to begin with but you could do with shaking those cobwebs off up there dude.

  375. MARK

    I guess some things are just more complex and can't be twittered. You seem a real product of your time. I think at the very core of a scientific understanding of the world lies simplicity and elegance and you can only get there by rolling up your sleeves and doing the work. That takes time, and requires a level of volume to express that.

    So what are you saying? That Charles Darwin would have to have worked on a twitter-friendly version of 'Origin'? Thank you for clarifying your level, and attention span on these issues. It clarifies a lot. Sorry I couldn't keep it under 140 characters or less.

  376. MARK

    You are not listening and in that you are a clear example of how memes (ideas with gene-like fidelity) fall by the wayside when understanding culture. You are still writing about God and humans as I suggested, that God is a program or a piece of software and all humans (all humans) are the same computer model, working on the same operating system and that shows glaring shortcomings on your behalf.

    It is an ecological given that all other life do not exhibit religious faith and when we're talking about 100s of millions of different kinds of species over geological time, that is quite a statement. It is an anthropological given that where you find people(s) you DO find religious faith, which is expressed through the language and customs of their time and place over the course of culture's dynamic history. This is a glaring difference, one of dimension and yet you brush it off like a slight inconvenience.

    The argument is not one that boils down to 'it is, because I say so' and repeating that tired old line does you no credit whatsoever. I could say the exact same about Dawkins' memetics theory, which is worth because:
    1. he tries to set himself up as a pantheon of science, and
    2. religion is a cultural phenomenon and if someone is so wrong on culture that has to impinge on his abilities to explain what religion is, what it does and how it is maintained. It has to.

    Clearly there is a lot of dissonance management going on in this page. No-one is seriously questioning my criticisms of memetics (which Richard has noted himself, as well as from other schools if thought trying to Darwinise culture) so you prefer to remain silent on those uncomfortable points. Go science, eh? So if you think that memetics is a science and Richard, Dennett and Harris approach religion from a scientific perspective which has a weighty grasp on the workings of culture, then you have misled. It's as straight as that.

    I ahere to Stephen Jay Gould's position on religion and science, of non-overlapping magisteria. I think ID is a poor approach, just like I think UD (Universal Darwinism) is guilty of the same dogma. I'll leave you with this point to ponder on and it deals with the multiple expression of not just God but everything humans create and design, and remember we're the only intelligent creating and designing species in the history of life on earth, something Dawkins and Dennett both lecture/interview on.

    In a very strict sense, no one does science. Everyone (everyone) acts through a medium to get to science. Whether you are a biologist, physicist, sociologist, etc you have to go through a subject to get to science. Even philosophers and historians of science are still philosophers and historians. There are many expressions of the science method and no-one could credibly argue that because there are so many 'sciences' this undermines the truth of the science method, rooted in experiment and the comparative method.

    The same can be said of God, of Democracy, of language (between 6-7,000 languages across a single species), indeed across all human fields of expression we see this rich diversity and relativity. In fashion, music, drama, etc. There are horror movies and romcoms, but they don't undermine the idea of the motion picture. There is the waltz and jive, but they don't undermine the idea of dance. There is a pattern here and it appears beyond you, clearly it is beyond Richard and his replicator fetish, if not full-blown faith.

    All human minds emerge and 'run' across and through brains that are 2/3rds learning machine. Humans are built for learning and that learning comes in as the 'soft causality of meaning'. This is a different dynamic from hard-wired species in localised environments over he evolutionary process. As a process culture is different from nature and that is why evolutionary theory has such difficulty in coming to terms with its 'hypercomplexity' as Edward O. Wilson called it in his book 'The Unity of Knowledge'.

    Human minds 'seem' the world around them and with relativity built-in to the human condition through mental impression and creative expression replicator models are the stuff of children when it comes to understanding culture which is more weather and wave like than crude, particulate replicator approaches. A human mind is a 'mine' and there is no mystery, with humans being the learning, creative and designing beings we are that we are the only ones who regard ourselves as having 'freedom' of action. The only ones.

    Science is good on the forensic, but poor on the feeling of being a human. Good on mechanics, poor on meaning. that will always be the case and all the brain scans (of blood flow and nutrients) won't tell you why you feel the way you do about the things in your life. Science's strenghts as a slow, methodical, collective enterprise cannot match the speed of human individual experience. I believe in God and I can have all the same understanding of the structure and system of the Universe (indeed, more than you) and have faith in God as the enabler of that structure and system. That is a deeper awareness than you have at present because you still think the stuff this psychiatrist is expressing is real science. You think that just by saying 'music evolved because of the rhythms of our heart' that is true. Standards in popular science have definitely hit a new low if you think this kind of cocktail party mode theory is real science.

    Then again, you can believe and say it is true, 'because it is'.

  377. MARK

    You are consistent NAND Gate, I'll give you that. Soundly beaten, by you and others here? You flatter yourself, but I guess when you get caught out as a non-reader and under-thinker on these matters you have to do something to keep the dissonance down.

    You're not a serious person. You can't answer a single point put to you, indeed you actually ask me to leave so that you can just share your closed views with fellow like (closed) minded people. Where is the comparative method in that? And you have the cheek to call me brainwashed.

    CLASSIC - On one of the few times you do try to make a point you show your total lack of understanding what is going on in the world around you. Evolution in the Darwinian sense is exactly a localised process which has explanatory capacity in the organic setting of nature. There have been 10+ schools of thought that have tried to Darwinise culture (Dawkins' memetics being but one of them) and they have all failed to generate an accepted theory of culture. The last 152 years are important because:
    1. with 10+ schools of thought working on this problem it is clearly a big problem requiring an answer, indeed Boyd & Richerson feel it could undermine the very basis of Darwinism, which I think is a little extreme. It does represent a glaring difference between humans and all other life though.

    2. there has been more science and scientists in this 152 year period than in the rest of recorded history, so it is hardly an inconsequential period.

    For you to say 'because it is so' in the face and weight (the gravity) of such evidence that says you are totally wrong, only shows you up for what you are, someone who wants science convenient, preferably in a pamphlet, ideally in a tweet.

    The universe is a dynamic entity, and therefore change is at the very heart of understanding the universe. There are different systems of change, and physicists don't cut & paste their awarenesses and slap it on biology and botany and annex neighbouring disciplines. That is not how science is done. It is an approach of intense specialisation which is being challenged more and more multi-disciplinary approaches mature. Darwinian evolution has no foresight, needs copious amounts of time and requires random mutations in order for selection to work on, although there are other factors. So it is a very specific kind of change. Cultural change is profoundly neo-lamarckian which is not just descent with modification but 'the inheritance of acquired characteristics' and any understanding of the fast pace of human social life would realise that we're talking about a kind of super neo-Lamarkianism.

    There are systems of change through the universe and for you to try and claim that they are all 'evolutionary' is quite ridiculous. Maybe you strayed onto this video looking for something else, but with Dawkins and Dennett at the twilight of their career, if you are a barometer and indication of the future of anti-theism then people of faith (and real science for that matter) have nothing to worry about from your drivel.

    I know I lost you after 140 characters but due to the magic of human socially constructed reality I live in hope that you can some back in years to come and see where you went wrong.

  378. MARK

    Achems_Razor
    Did you know that Occam was a man of the cloth, nice tribute. Another twitter mind, I see you bypass comment and seek the solace of another language. If you need the comfort blanket of Latin fair play to you but you have literally nothing to say. That's a shame for a species with 6-7,000 languages, with the English language passing its one millionth word in recent years.

    Perhaps you could become more familiar with some of them. Nice tribute in the name.

  379. MARK

    Hesusa
    Sorry, I think you are confusing science with story telling. We're looking for something far more rigorous in science when it comes to understanding how culture works. Its important to be clear that if people in Darwin's day/time used your story and narrative as a barometer for what science is they would never have realised evolutionary theory. They'd have stopped with Lamarck, Chambers, or even CD's grandfather. They didn't and I'm glad.

    I'll tell you what I think culture is and what a science of culture requires, and requires it all. Culture is human second nature, our learned nature the primary source of experience comes not from the organic but from the artificial world around most humans. This social world is made up of trillions and trillions of artifacts. It is important to note we are talking about a ne kind of causation here: meaning and time.

    That is not to say that temporal sequence didn't exist before humans came along, its always there, but 'time' (socially organised and meaningfully experienced/recorded) is only a human-level awareness. All cultures in time and place can be framed in a very specific way through placetime-meantime-spacetime. Placetime is the entire stock of human expression feeding back onto/into our field of experience. Placetime is information (abstract) and meantime is meaning (applied). Meaning has a causative hold over human minds and attention, but it is not a particulate understanding, it is a feel'd phenomenon better understood as weather-like. It is no coincidence that people refer to 'the current political climate' or 'the economic climate'. They are referring to the sea of information all around us, but as soon as information enters our feel'd of experience it collapses into meaning.

    Different minds 'seem' the world differently, and I would be naive to think that any two minds could read my words the same. The key cycle to understand culture is content, in context, in contact, making connection, circulating meaning, a current. If that sounds ethereal good because it is an awareness that can be taken down to the quantum level where time is 'spin up' and meaning is 'spin down' through an understanding that information is:

    1. recorded knowledge
    2. informing motion
    3. in formation

    Minds actively preserve from moving world around us, and to get up to date, is also to get up to 'data' (meaning) and 'up to speed'. Meaning is constructed and reconstructed in the now of meantime, which is also 'for the time being'. What is the physical basis for this system and structure? That is a powerful question but once we arrive at an equation that can measure culture's state and with multiple measures its speed then what we can say is that by being able to mathematically represent and express culture in an equation we've done something very important.

    1. show that culture as a system operates differently from nature
    2. that we can measure culture(s) like we can measure weather, and the idea that culture has trends and we can make forecasts shouldn't come as too much of a shock
    3. that this dynamic equation is shaped and influenced by human thought and behaviour. That gives us tremendous food for thought when we can 'know' (really know) that what we do has a measurable effect at the societal level, and at a level that affects the natural world adversely.

    Moreover, on the way to this realisation that the human condition is a blend of the physical and virtual, Einstein's realisation that energy and matter are related can also be found in/through the virtual world of information/meaning. If something 'matters' for humans, peoples and cultures then it is related to the amount of energy that is used to maintain that 'matter' (virtual matter of information). This enables the first law of cultural expression 'A cultural expression is equal to the sum total of all unfolding impressions'. We can see this clearly using the internet as an example, of a network being 'a working net' ebbing and flowing as a consequence of human interest, not evolutionary imperatives. Lifestyle being interests in action. What 'holds' this world together is the virtual gravitation of meaning and its worth recalling that 'gravity' meant weight of expression and seriousness 170 years before Newton coined the term for his theory.

    Term is a crucial word, it means:
    1. the naming of something, and
    2. a period of time

    This makes the human condition fundamentally a dynamic, temporal , chaotic condition. It is profoundly relative and this makes culture more difficult, but not impossible to understand. As an awareness of culture deepens through sociological psychology we can bridge into the natural sciences sophisticating evolutionary theory along the way, which is something science welcomes but something administrators of current science are not so keen on. Through theoretical sociophysics the social sciences can bridge into the physical sciences and give them a nudge as well. We still don't know the physical basis of gravity and that is 300+ years after Newton so the idea of culture's physicality, while virtual and unknown is an issue, its far from an undermining one. We could understand the ebb and flow of meaning as flowing bands of colour and of adherents of technicolour are correct this could link the social and physical worlds through as unknown fundamental force. Technicolour also explains why the LHC hasn't found the Higgs yet, because this approach doesn't need one.

    Its that and more, but understanding culture as "the climate and meteorology of meaning" is as good a definition as I can come up with, although Raymond Williams' 'structure of feeling' is pretty good, as well as Vgotskys' 'sign operations'. The thing to realise about culture is that is not a 'content' phenomena, it is a circuit. We can create content in our minds (human preserved awareness) but culture around us moves on, and around although it is in relative concert with our minds.

    Evolutionary thinking on this comes nowhere close to any of these points, and that is one difference in outcome between science, pseudo-science, and your story telling.

  380. NAND Gate

    Beauty + language = brevity.

  381. NAND Gate

    Get a job. Serious bro.

  382. NAND Gate

    Welcome to the evolution of comment posting.

    Welcome to the great big ocean, in which the pond you come is nary a drop.

    I am not here to serve, placate or even convince you. I am here to refute you - eloquently - and in short enough space that people will bother to read. If we agree, then so be it.

  383. Achems_Razor

    Thank you for your ad hominem attacks, means more than one) and yes I am familiar with some languages as English is not even my first language. Will give you an ad hominem attack, tell me, what secrets do you posses to make you a prolific pseudo-mind-reader?

    Of course Occam was a man of the cloth circa 1285-1349, the stake with all the dry timber and a torch at the ready, beckoned if he was not, Hmm?

  384. absta1995

    Wow, you guys write a lot.

  385. MARK

    If you are in the know when it comes to culture then you sure don't show it by the way you string word together. That's how being a human works, we take the dynamic world of experience as a measure of how the world is. Your flimsy defence of Richard's memetic pseudo-science looked like 'a flimsy defence of Richard's memetc pseudo-science'.

    You guys/gal sure are into flattery, I suppose you have to share somethings together, it's clearly not a sophisticate grasp of the arguments here. Richard Dawkins has a largely underwhelming history of commenting on culture. In 1976, over the course of ages he announced to the world the latest (10+ schools of thought trying to Darwinise culture to date). Responding to criticism he even repeated (p.112) four cast iron reasons why memes cannot be thought of as genes in 'The Extended Phenotype'. This is the reality, that memetics doesn't have a journal, not even an on-line journal. You provided a weaker than weak defence of this pseudo-science and I called you out on that. This is the real world and you are doing nothing to undermine what I say except referring to tired (seriously tired) retorts like 'ad hominem'. I've even directed you to the page in EP where Richard shows that he is aware of these deep, lasting and structural failing in his pseudo-theory.

    That is bad enough, but this guy tries to set himself up as a pantheon of science, when this is cut & paste pseudo-science. Moreover, in the twilight of his career he rather sadly becomes the poster boy for anti-theism. Religion is a cultural phenomenon. If we are scientifically and critically minded then someone who has a poor track record on culture who then asserts that he has religion worked out should meet with criticism, but for you seemingly it's open arms.

    Get this, there's not a single novel argument that Richard makes in The God Delusion that can't be shattered (not just dented) by critical thinking, none. Your reading level may well be at armchair/airport theology and science level and if that is the case I can see where RD's output is seductive. That's not the way to the truth however. Richard thinks that multiple expressions of God undermine the idea of God. It is a cultural given that 'everything' humans express is diverse, and if you doubt this look at all the nations that we can democratic, it's a different model for every nation. This is first year sociology stuff that RD is seemingly oblivious to. That's what happens when you have platformed your career on an overly particulate, gene-centrist world view. It might get you through the cultural times of the 70s, 80s and even the 90s. Systems, cybernetic and network approaches are the way forward and even Richard's gene-centrism is starting to wane and is being challenged within/across the evolutionary field as other forms of selection are being highlighed, neutral, group and not to mention the importance of contingent factors and the power of variation, evensuper-variation. Dawkins 'settled' on what he thought was the winner back in the 70s and on this he was not alone, but as the roulette wheel slows down, no matter how much RD doubled-down on his gene-centrism, this view is history. I've referred to this quote before but its worth repeating to you followers. BBC 'Great Thinkers', episode 1:

    "In humans the brain has taken over in such a big way that it becomes positively misleading to try to attempt to explain human behaviour in a simple-minded, naive vehicle for the genes kind of way."

    Richard has been the advocate-in-chief for this ignorance previously. It is this ignorance that has provided the basis for his influence and now he is distancing himself from this. I didn't put those words in his mouth and his conversion to something that social science, and even other evolutionary theorists have been saying for decades shouldn't overlook the fact that even in his 'own' field he has been so wrong. I've already mentioned how wrong he has been on culture, and that flows into religion as well.

    Richard makes a point in TGD about an intelligence making an intelligence and he s correct in saying that this almost never happens, but we can see a clear example of it in the present, with humans making, creating and designing 'artificial intelligence'. You can follow Thomson's pseudo-science in this video if you think that 'writing, reading and music' can be brushed off as 'byproducts' but seriously, that only make you look incredibly shallow, convenience seeking and ill-positioned to make any credible points regarding the underlying mechanisms of culture, and evolution for that matter, as well as the differences between science and pseudo-science.

    I'm saying quite clearly RD has nothing. I share with him the disgust at rapists in churches, indeed rapists everywhere. I'm encouraged to say that things are changing in my lifetime that will update the institutions that manage religion going into the future. So child-rape that has been allowed to persist in the won't be in the future. The mainstream view on homosexuality is changing and for the better. Over time these changes will bed in and religion as an institution will be the better for it. For people like yourself, you'll probably still be going on about talking snakes and zombies which doesn't look serious and highlights your consistent failing to understand culture's relativity. So I'm not threatened by Richard Dawkins, Dennett & Co, not on culture, not on waning gene-centrist views of evolution and certainly not on his/others armchair/airport theology. I'm even less threatened by anyone lese coming through. I mean, have you read Sam Harris' 'The Moral Landscape'? For a book trying to outline the possibility of a science of morality this is a book with more questions than answers. Any such claim shows a faith-like attachment to science as a human artifact and method, and completely underestimates he dynamic, expressive range of human culture(s). We don't need science to be able to realise human rights because we have them, although they could be more globally accepted. Religion has been front and centre when it come to charity work and the proliferation of universal human rights. I would direct you to the role people of faith played in overturning slavery and apartheid, which all occurred in/through the age of science.

    Clearly you are persuaded and faith is a personal matter and atheism is an understandable position. God isn't just a big question, it is the biggest question and understanding more is a quest, and quests can be exhausting. Richard is selling something. He is selling his faith in science, his unhealthy (for a critical mind to function well) hero-worship of Darwin. and gene-centrist neo-Darwinism. He has so much faith in this position he, and others, asserted a viewpoint called Universal Darwinism (UD) where their crude world view of reality was asserted to account for everything 'just because they say so'. All the while this unscientific dogma is being advanced by the then Professor for the Public Understanding of Science. This is not an attack on Richard Dawkins, this is historical reality. Richard has been short on a number of fundamental points and yet you don't even blink an eye when these deep mistakes are pointed out to you. He's clearly done a real number on you man.

    Keep the faith brother.

  386. MARK

    There is nothing here in terms of challenge, but I hope your comments remain NAND Gate, the idea that ideas are subject to the same process of evolution as genes:

    1. is a faith position
    2. shows you don't know how evolution works
    3. shows you don't know how culture works
    4. indicates why you think RD is a credible source in these matters.

    That's not just wrong, its moronic and certainly dogmatic. Like I've said that's a faith position. It's not just me that's disagreeing with you its mainstream science, and the almost he entirety of social science and also evolutionary psychology, Boyd & Richerson's evolutionary approach to culture, Sperber's epidemiological approach to culture. That's three approaches using Darwinian thinking that are quite overt in their criticism of memetics, as well as the mainstream of social sciences, arts and humanities. And you accuse me of being brainwashed. They've done a real number on you dude.

    You are a walking, talking, typing cliche of faddy, under-read anti-theism. You want me to out myself a closet creationist? Do I believe that god created the Universe? Absolutely. Do I believe that the Universe by and large feeds itself? Totally. Do I believe that humans, and only humans have the power (and evolutionary over-capacity) to learn and read the world(s) around them? You bet. Seed, feed and read. There's my cosmology there. So I can take all the science, all the structure and system you can throw at me, and still have a deeper awareness than you on faith. Certainly my awareness of science and the theories that make up science are deeper than yours. You are a poor barometer though if your comments to date are a measure of how you think.

    You say you can express any thought you have in 100 words of less. That's probably the only think you've said that's believable so far. Bless.

  387. Vlatko

    @MARK,

    You are really frustrated by RD &Co. You're simply scared of the fact that many people are challenging your blind faith in an intelligent, reasonable way. And I understand you. You have to jump into the defense mode... to seek shelter in shallow words, to personally label people around you who don't share your world views.

    This is the real world and you are doing nothing to undermine what I say except referring to tired (seriously tired) retorts like 'ad hominem'.

    Wait... I thought you're the one with 'ad hominems'. Jesus!!!

    And STOP with the evasion. Tell us what is the AGENDA of these people? You've said that there is an AGENDA.

    And please tell us something about the Cargo Cults? How would you explain them?

  388. Vlatko

    @MARK,

    The phenomenon of "Cargo Cults" is the answer to all of your questions. Discard RD & Co. Don't listen to them. Just explain to yourself why this god damned cults are appearing?

    When you honestly investigate these stories, and try to look them without your "God" goggles you don't need "RD and Co" to tell you what is right or wrong. You don't need to bother reading their books, or watching their videos. Just look at the obvious.

    The fact is that these religious beliefs appear without any "God like" assistance. They directly spring out of the contact with something that they can't simply explain withing their context of cultural development.

    And that pattern is surprisingly repeated across many different tribes. They have "something" in them which in particular occasions triggers belief in supernatural. In this case the occasion is an encounter with advanced human civilization, which is not GOD.

    This behavior is not limited to uncivilized homo sapiens. One modern example is Scientology. There are 1 million believers in this religion. Would you argue that this is God inspired religion?

    Long story short. All the above is actually supporting evidence to what RD & Co are saying, whether you like it or not.

    Cheers.

  389. MARK

    Thanks for asking me what minds do. I'm aware of your limited attention span so I'll try and be brief but a sophisticated understanding of how culture works on the outside provides an understanding for how mind works on the inside. Mind and culture are in relative concert and they only deal with one thing: meaning.

    Electromagnetic theories of culture (which is a wave phenomena) fit in well with electromagnetic theories of mind and as the evidence comes in we can be clearer about what the human mind is. Article from 'Neuron' journal, July 15th last year will be the first of many on this. The neural excitation coming from the mind was thought as epiphenomenal, but now these 'endogenous electrical fields' can provide feedback, although limited in rodents. As the evolutionary process unfolds and life becomes more social and cognitive we can understand from this expanding tree of life more communicative, socially expressive life species. This is not culture however, because we have to go through primordial culture and proto culture before we get to humans and culture (proper) which is a system the likes of which have never been seen.

    I've already noted that human brains are 2/3rds learning machine and the sheer neuroplasticity that has been highlighted by cognitive and neurosciences makes humans the only life species to be causatively driven by experience in the way that we are. I'll remind you and others that the primary source of that experience is not an organic setting, not made by nature. It is an artificial world which consists of physical and virtual causative forces and understanding this relative concert between culture and mind is critical for the social sciences, as well as science as a whole.

    So minds 'preserve awareness' from the dynamic social, natural and physical world around them. We can talk about other animals having minds but we're really talking about proto minds. Evolutionary theory can't have it all ways. It can't be about genes, in localised ecological niches, in stable environments with the process of evolution having no foresight, and YET animals have minds (proper) to decide, be free and choose in the ways that we see humans exhibit. To have a mind (proper) is to have a level of 'preserved awareness' which we associate with a level of 'active reaction' to the world around us beyond all other life. All other life in this sense means the 100s of millions of other species over the evolutionary process. Minds extend into the physical world around us in the same sense that a remote control extends to the TV appliance when we are changing channel. When we take on board that the social world of humankind is made of trillions of artifacts, and if you can ponder on the urban world around you as 'like' an art gallery then these remote control beams of influence all around us, nudge our attention individually and collectively.

    This process is a dynamic, chaotic system of physical and virtual causative processes. A lot of scienctists aren't comfortable with non-corporeality but if indeed information is non-corporeal (certainly informing motion is) then to understand culture more requires we 'take in' that this feel'd around us is artificial, human-made and virtual in that the waves of changing values, meanings and opinions ebb and flow around us as information, but we consume them as meaning. For human minds (system) acting through brains (structure) 'meaning is in the mind's eye of the beholder'. The physical and natural worlds are more structure and less system, and they are the 'hard sciences'. The social sciences, arts and humanities are a departure from this and emerge as more system than structure. For them to be called the 'soft sciences' is not a criticism, it is a statement about the elusive character of cultural causation: meaning.

    Q. Is information corporeal?

    I'm not trying to trick you into conceding something on God here. I don't think humans are Gods, but we are 'of' God and I think we can see that in the sheer range of human expression, creativity, design and art. Science is but one part of that expressive capacity. The goal for the student of the mind is simple, to explain every single single reference to mind that humans use, and use the world over. In a physical sense the mind emerges and feedsback to the brain in a circuit preserving awareness unique to ever mind over the human species. Think of the streams and rivers of excitation ebbing and flowing around your brain right now.
    What's going on 'in' your mind?
    What's going 'through' your mind?
    What's 'on' your mind?

    I don't want an answer, but we have to account for every reference to the term 'mind', even words with additional morphemes.
    Mind is (human) preserved awareness
    To 'remind' is to recall preserved awareness.

    So the mind is the dynamic, chaotic system of excitation in/through the brain with the ability to feedback as an endogenous electrical field. The article in Neuron journal being the first of many that will take on this point and over the course of evolutionary history the gradual 'dialling up' of this feedbacking coincides with increasing social skills and general intelligence. The game changer arrives around 50,000 years ago when humans emerge and extend from the evolutionary process. With minds (proper) this heralds an increasingly propulsive and creative process of culture, driven my minds, which in turn create culture(s) that drive minds in a dialectical relationship. Richard Lewontin's 'Triple Helix' is the most sophisticated view of evolution that fits in well with this approach.

    There are two metaphors that can help you get the mind. It ebbs and flows like weather's dynamic, chaotic state and although its difficult for mentally ill people to talk about their mental state, there is evidence that their unique experience (and it can't be a pleasant one) when it is articulated it is often recalled in weather-like terms, the way their moods fluctuates. Neuroscience has used brain injury for some telling insights so harnessing the views of people with mental health problems provides additional insight into an aspect of the minds functioning, and at times chaotic functioning. The nuclear metaphor is another. It's a basic insight that humans can create and design, but another to realise that they cannot stop designing and creating and the nuclear metaphor is effective in conveying this powerful human capacity. This is a capacity that Richard has commented on previously. In The Devils Advocate he writes that humans "have the gift of foresight" and the ability "to internalise the very cosmos."

    String theory posits 11 dimensions and there are a range of multiverse theories across theoretical sociophysics. How does this affect my belief in God? Well, I'm saying that there is much, much more to know and a difficulty with your position is that you are asserting something:

    1. that displays a poor understanding of the difference in dimension between culture and nature, and humankind (shapers of the world) and all other life (shaped by that world)
    2. that fails to understand there is almost certainly more to learn about than we know already
    3. that is a personal opinion, yet you try and use science to bolster than view. That is poor reasoning, and even poorer science.

    On 1. I think the ability to take control over the control we have over the natural and social worlds can allow us to address grave issues in terms of the environment. If you shrug your shoulders (and business people love this) and say "it's all evolution" then you immediately naturalise and legitimise the violence humankind inflicts on the natural world. I am completely opposed to that view. What humans do is artificial and without precedent across the living world. We're 'of' God in that we have profound creative and design capacity but what we do with that power, we've got to sort out oursleves. Carl Sagan wrote that it was the fate of technological societies to destroy themselves. I'm a person of faith and/but I'm certainly open to the idea that there may have been other beings who have been 'of' God. My focus remains on the now and what we can do to address our situation, which is grave. We're the majestic menace, and my head is certainly not in the sand on these matters.

    3. you and others have a lot of noise here but nothing in terms of a knock-out blow. I think God is the deepest truth the human mind can be aware of, but that certainly doesn't stop a believer from having a sophisticated understanding of the structure and system of how the Universe works. I've told you that at the end of the New Testament The Bible encourages the reader to 'test' and that fits in well with the ethic of science. RD can talk talking snakes and zombies all day long but he'll never discover anything with that tired, unconvincing (beyond cultural fad) opinion. It's far from science, and that brings us back to this video which despite the attempt to portray Thomson as a moderate he is on the record stating his anti-theism and that he thinks religion is doomed.

    This is a shallow understanding of history, from a psychiatrist who is not an authority on the evolutionary process by any means. He says music came from the rhythm of our hearts, pure garbage. Stephen Jay Gould called this 'just so' story telling and debunked this whole approach as pseudo-science in an article on 'Darwinian Fundamentalism'. Gould was called the Evolutionary Laureate in America so his views are not on the fringe, he had real concerns about the narrow neo-Darwinian viewpoint trying to reify natural selection AS evolution, and vice versa. A vulgar distortion of Darwin's work.

    Humans have minds, an expressive capacity that allows them to design, create and ultimately have freedom. I'm not saying that minds can float around, they are rooted in the now influenced and nudge around by the feel'd of experience all round them. Experience that was not made by nature but by culture. There are laws to this process and even an equation but it cannot be realised from the evolutionary approach. Darwin said that human mind and animal minds were different in degree not kind. Daniel Dennett (Dawkins' older intellectual brother) wrote a book called 'Kinds of Minds' not 'Degrees of Mind'.

    The difference is not one of degree or mind, but one of dimension. I' saying that culture and mind are beyond the explanatory capacity of evolutionary theory and if you think this video cobbling together just-so stories, a child-like notion of evolution and quite vulgar statements about human cultural complexity is credible then you are presently lost to the world of critical thought. Remember, according to this psychiatrist 'reading, writing, music and religion' just happened as 'byproducts.

    That's the reason given 'because he says so'. "Byroduct" is the linguistic place-filler from the person who all too often doesn't know what he is talking about. He knows that evolution in the Darwinian sense cannot explain reading and writing suddenly 'appearing' in the record 5,000 years ago and offers cobbled together opinion, pseudo-science while packaging it as 'science'. I feel sorry that your mind (and others) have hoovered this up so willingly. There's no challenge here, but that is not to discount the comfort you feel being among like-minded (people who preserve awareness in similar ways to you) people.

    That's not a compliment.

  390. NAND Gate

    There is no question that evolution works on everything - including ideas. It is not faith. It is empirical fact.

    Faith is hollow. And arguing with creationists is a complete waste of time. You say daft things like "evolutionary over-capacity". Evolution knows nothing of "over-capacity". It knows about selection of the fittest. That is all. Your scientific knowledge is high school level at best.

    Get a job (maybe something where you can use your hands).

  391. NAND Gate

    You talk bollocks.

    We cannot prove anything as fact? You are as naive as hell.

    Fact: You are on the internet, communicating.

    Fact: The internet is a product of science.

    Go on - lets see you dance around that one.

  392. Guest

    All of this elaborate, pretentious, technical-sounding verbiage fails to hide the essential lack of substance in your argument for the existence of God, or for that as the explanation of the creation of culture.

    1. Yes, I understood it,

    and

    2. that was not a compliment, either.

  393. MARK

    You are constantly on transmit. You have literally nothing to offer. You say I am really frustrated by RD & Co and I've listed some of the reasons why RD will not be thought of as a credible voice on science, how he has been weak on culture, strong on dogma and you haven't been able to dismiss a single point I've made. You ask questions and I'll answer them, I've nothing to hide, but you keep running from questions put to you. Do you think memetics is a pseudo-science? Is information non-corporeal/corporeal? Stop running.

    Cargo cults, it seems you've done some reading on this and you think there is a point here, where this goes only undermines Richard more and more. I've been saying that humans are experience driven and that knowledge is 'now'ledge and profoundly relative. If indigenous peoples experience levels of technology that are beyond the scope of their manufacturing capacity and they are spiritual in focus then its logical (engineering degrees can take a long time) that they attribute the 'magic' of this new reality to their deity. I don't know what point you're trying to make here but I was more interested in Richard Feynman's reference to 'cargo cult science' of which memetics is one of many.

    Richard is fascinated with culture as a phenomenon because it is elusive, a problem that Darwin (and many others) have not been able to explain and because the underlying machinery, mechanisms, structure and system are beyond Richard's grasp he then frames culture through his own personal faith system 'Universal Darwinism'. What Dawkins did with memetics was crude cut & paste stuff, which can is one thing when you are a remote indigenous and/or aboriginal peoples, but something quite different when you go on to become the Professor for the Public Understanding of Science.

    1. Richard's memetics is failed theory of culture
    2. Richard's gene-centrism, and the entire platform for his scientific legitimacy is waning in science in the face of the more sophisticated systems and cybernetic approaches.
    3. Richard is a principal advocate of the dogma Universal Darwinism which frames ('cargo cults' if you will) all realities, cosmic, cultural and mental through natural selection. This is a faith position, and not a scientific one.
    4. Despite his shortcomings in the understanding of culture works Richard has taken his personal belief that there is no god and tried to weave a narrative projecting his armchair/airport theology as in some way scientific.

    You tell me, what have I/others got to be scared of? 1, 2, 3 or 4? Have you read 'The Moral Landscape'? Harris, indeed anyone that thinks they can take 'science' into the world of morality and politics seamlessly is a moron. The term 'moron' reflects:
    1. their naivety, and
    2. their corruption of 'science' as a method.

    You are saying nothing, other than I'm frustrated by RD & Co. I find them a bump, not even a hurdle in terms of their reasoning. You clearly find them convincing, so I'm not going to be able to alter your closed-mind in a series of posts but if you think that Richard's documented failure and dogma when it comes to culture qualifies him on religion, then whatever you are being its not scientific.

    The agenda is to elevate their opinion, and pseudo-science as something more than what it is. Again, you're not reading. You go away and google 'Universal Darwinism' (UD) and see Richard's dogma and agenda right there. He would like to take the Darwinian revolution into areas where its explanatory power is severely diminished, and in culture he has been shown to be short. Yet, despite this he thinks he is qualified to talk talking snakes and zombies about a process whose relativity he can't come to grips with. These are historical facts.

    I didn't make Richard proclaim a theory of culture in 'The Selfish Gene'.

    I didn't make three other evolutionary based approaches to culture say time and time again that memetics is poor approach to culture because it can't be understood from/by a particulate model
    I've already directed you to p.112 of The Extended Phenotype to see four cast-iron reasons why memes can't genes. I can only hold your hand so much.

    I didn't make Richard say the following on the BBC series Great Thinkers: (this really is a stunning admission, not great if you are a follower though)

    "In humans the brain has taken over in such a big way that it becomes positively misleading to try to attempt to explain human behaviour in a simple-minded, naive vehicle for the genes kind of way."

    I feel I have to keep repeating that because you don't seem to want to acknowledge that. It's a mind thing. I can't think of a single other sentence that Richard could expressed undermining his historical position on these matters.
    *positively misleading
    *simple-minded naive

    I've always been aware that Richard has been 'positively misleading' on human behaviour and culture. Moreover, I've known his gene-centrism (and current direction in science endorses this view) was 'simple-minded and naive' when it came to humans. So, with all these errors in understanding human behaviour, through and culture what is it I have to be frustrated about?

    'God is STILL a Delusion' the book? He's nowhere to go in terms of his adult armchair/airport theology.

    Another book on evolution? I think not. 'The Greatest Show on Earth' was his swansong to books on evolution, and as a legacy book doesn't compare to Gould's opus 'the Structure of Evolutionary Theory'.

    'The Magic of Reality' is his latest book at influencing child minds.

    Richard thinks you can't have science and religion. This is his agenda and he wants everyone to choose, even kids. Shameful. That is his opinion and its certainly not science, but Richard benefits from the confusion of a scientist, biophilosopher and writer expressing his anti-theism. It's opinion, pure and simple rooted on a career-long failure to understanding culture's structure and system. It's not science, its dogma, politics and opinion. RD would try and convince people that science and religion are necessarily in conflict but the history of science, and ground breaking science says something else.

    Francis Bacon said "A little philosophy inclineth man's mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men's minds about to religion." Before it was called the science method it was called 'the Baconian method' so he's historically an important figure.

    The first mind to discover a physical law? Isaac Newton who wrote more on theology than he did on science. He thought the universe was 'God's sensorium' which in the light of current speculation in theoretical physics is increasingly moderate.

    Gregor Mendel, father of genetics and a Czech monk

    Thomas Malthus, an Anglican clergyman and his book on population provided the 'eureka' moment for Wallace and Darwin.

    Alfred Russel Wallace, co-discovered of theory of evolution but differed from Darwin in that he was a spiritual person (Darwin was an agnostic) and said that natural selection couldn't account for human higher mental faculty. Remember, the psychiatrist Thomson here doesn't say that 'writing, reading and music' didn't come about because of natural selection but by some mysterious process of 'byproduct'. Thomson doesn't know, Darwin didn't know and in the fullness of time Wallace's views on mind may well stay on, it remains a problem for evolutionary theory. Evolution has no foresight remember.

    Some common phrases associated with science and evolution are also noteworthy.
    Occam's Razor where 'the simplest explanation s usually the most likely' is often cited without knowing that William of Ockham was a Franciscan Friar. Another man of the cloth.

    "Nothing in Biology makes sense except in the light of evolution" was a quote from Russian Orthodox Christian Theodosious Dobzhansky. He was a central figure in the shaping of the Modern Evolutionary Synthesis which brought together Darwinian evolutionary theory and Mendelian genetics. This quote is from an essay of the same name in which Dodzhansky (an influential evolutionary biologist and PhD supervisor to Richard Lewontin) wrote:
    "I am a creationist and an evolutionist. Evolution is God's, or Nature's method of creation. Creation is not an event that happened in 4004 BC; it is a process that began some 10 billion years ago and is still under way."

    Science and religion can be in conflict, but not necessarily so. In recent years there have been some challenges that have went through the courts and the most recent high-profile of these was at Kitzmiller in 2005 where the lead witness on the evolutionary process wasn't Richard Dawkins but Professor of biology Kenneth R. Miller, intelligent design debunker and practicing Catholic.

    The idea that science and religion are necessarily in conflict is one that Richard & Co try to promulgate but people of faith have been at the very coal face of scientific discovery since before it was even called science. If a person of faith goes on to realise the laws and underlying structure of culture and mind that will only continue a long line of religious, critically minded thinkers.

    What we can say with absolute certainty is that person will not be Richard Dawkins because he has tried and been found wanting when it comes to scientific approaches to culture. That is not opinion, that is historical and documented fact. I would say to you that with an understanding of cultural history and the process of expression (not evolution) "Nothing in culture makes sense except in the light of Expression" and this would included religion as well as a cultural phenomena. So I have nothing to fear from either Richard because he has a bad track record on culture, and certainly you'd be leaving your reading comfort level if you tried to argue that wasn't the case. As for this psychiatrist in this video, the single greatest discovery relating to the mind wasn't Darwins, it was Freuds, with the discovery of the human unconscious mind, which is another development/emergence important for minds (proper).

    I'm interested in what Richard has to say because he is guilty of a lot of the things he criticises of socially organised religion. Furthermore, you are guilty (and you are not alone) of the closed-mindedness you accuse of people of faith. You are over reluctant to answer questions and that only looks like insecurity on your part. I'm saying that Richard doesn't have a novel argument to make about faith that can't be shot down, so you as a hooverer up of this opinion and at times pseudo-science represent a much lesser challenge.

    So, is information corporeal or non-corporeal?
    Is memetics 'cargo cult science' using the terms Feynman outlined?

    Don't evade the questions, it only looks like you've go no answers man.

  394. MARK

    I've posted a reply and its with the moderator. In the meantime (between spacetime and placetime) two questions for you:
    1. Is information corporeal or non-corporeal?
    2. Using Feynman's definition of 'cargo cult science' do you think memetics is cargo cult science, pseudo-science or an experimental science?

  395. Guest

    Blathering blatherskite.

  396. Vlatko

    @MARK,

    You're talking to the moderator. Don't be confused and read the warning below.

    It's really and obsession with RD and Co. You just rumble how he has been weak on culture, strong on dogma without any substantial evidence, except your own extrapolations and misquoted "admissions".

    You say: "If indigenous peoples experience levels of technology that are beyond the scope of their manufacturing capacity and they are spiritual in focus then its logical (engineering degrees can take a long time) that they attribute the 'magic' of this new reality to their deity."

    What? It's logical right. So that is why almost all cultures when encounter something beyond their experience level (not necessary technological) they explain the cause of it as a deed of supernatural. Isn't that I sign to you that every time something like that happens it is very likely that it will be interpreted as supernatural force. The videos above is just attempting to explain why the events of that kind would be interpreted as such.

    I'll repeat it again. I don't care what RD and Co. are saying. There are many examples besides Cargo Cults that point to the fact that religious belief is a cultural product, and as such is obviously man-made and has nothing to do with so called God. Amon Ra, Scientology, Zeus etc...

    Then you go on and rumble about how Isac Newton and others where religious etc...

    I've already answered this but it seems you don't read everything. You just read what fits you. Here it is again: That is true, but it's not in your God's favor. Modern science is a very young child. In the past all the scientists were religious philosophers. As the time goes by that number is getting very close to zero.

    As of me evading your questions, I didn't encounter any. You just rumble about how memetics is pseudo-science, Dawkins hijacked Darwin, agenda, the mind, culture etc...

    Memetics is not mainstream. Don't be scared. It's on the margins. Let me repeat again, since you don't read: Memetics is not the definitive answer of how and why people pass their beliefs through generations. It is one possible answer and at this moment is not generally accepted. If overwhelmed with evidence IT WILL BE accepted.

    Now over to your direct questions in you last comment.

    1. Is information corporeal or non-corporeal? I don't know nor you do. Mind over matter or matter over mind. If you claim that you know the answer to this, then I can for sure say that you're GOD.

    2. Memetics in the case of the Cargo Cults is experimental science. Cargo Cults are clearly showing that cultural ideas, symbols or practices, can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena. And keep in mind, this can happen really fast. Over 2-3 generations.

    P.S. And you're done here. You've crossed the line with your insults in your last comment (which is not published).

  397. Hesusa

    Wibble is not a wibble untill it is a wibble.

  398. Rainmaker

    1. If a person cannot formulate his argument in a concise and clear way, then he/she does not really understand the subject.

    2. Getting on a personal level and trying to insult your opponent, instead of just staying within the topic of discussion, simply shows lack of education and inability to think objectively. Period.

    3. Writing a long comment shows lack of respect to others, as you are "suggesting" them to spend quite some time reading ALL your thoughts.

  399. Mark

    Psychologist Stephen Wolinsky coined the expression "anthropomorphic superimposition" which I picked up at times in this presentation; it's simply projecting onto an imagined divine figure humanlike characteristics, i.e., God wants, God creates, etc.

  400. sknb

    I understand what they mean when they say that religion is hard to drop because it connects us to people. I could never tell my father the scientific evidence presented in this lecture. It would break his heart, make him angry, and make him think less of me. These are things I don't want.

  401. The Malboro Mensch

    well stated

  402. Carl Jodoin

    i talked to creationists the other (myself being an atheist) and i could not understand how someone could still think that all humans descend from adam and eve... what a waist of intellect. PS I'm not lauphing at religious people, only those which their faith blind's them from reality.

  403. wald0

    Excellent lecture, very informative and well presented. I have often wondered why there was not already a branch of psychology dealing with the common place but completely illogical phenomenon of religiouse belief. I am glad to see that it will soon be offered to students as a field of psychology. I am sure I will be long dead befor it is offered here in the southeastern US where I live, but at least I can read the research.

    I did notice one thing he said early on though that I disagree with, that this would give atheist some good points to bring up when argueing with believers. I don't think that is the case. Generally people that believe discount scientific research out right, and his whole arguement is based on just that- scientific research employing the scientific method. People believe inspite of logic, scientific research, common sense, etc. so employing these methods to change their mind isn't going to work I am afraid. But, hey- what else can you do, after all our whole point is that science, logic, scientific reasoning is the best way to form expectations, solve problems, etc. So we have to use it as our form of arguement. Thats why i decided to get out of the fight, it just seems pointless.

    The only thing that I have seen that has a chance of changing a believer into a non-believer is education, which means they have to allow themselves to be educated. You can lead a horse to water but, well you know the rest. As soon as you start argueing with someone your chance of educating them is over. As soon as you challenge dearly held beliefs directly, your chance of educating them is usually over. You have to sort of put the pieces to the puzzle out there and then let them take them home to assemble the final picture and decide what it means to them. If they do this on their own they may actually change their mind, if you do it for them they will generally reject it.

  404. WiseGapist

    Great doc, very sound principles stated.

    PS- I swear I spend more time reading the comments on this site than watching the documentaries I intended to fill my time with.^ Usually learn a thing or two though so no complaints ;)

  405. Darryl P

    Yes we have it backwards we have made a God in our image. Which is not god. Because God Is

  406. Gaurav Tyagi

    please do not miss the last part where the Audience asked him questions.... but please do not directly jump on to that... you won't understand ****....

  407. Winston Smith

    there are 2 kinds of people in the world. The kind that believe there are two kinds of people in the world and everyone else.

  408. Winston Smith

    THE PART IN THE Jewish BIBLE WHERE IT says that..man was made in the image of god was meant to convey that man's true nature is spiritual (mental) and not physical or corporeal.

  409. gunk wretch

    Another athiest who assumes all religions are like literalized abrahamic religions. All religions to him are literalistic and dogmatic, all of them with dogmas that contradict evolution, while this is clearly not the reality.
    His three points that all religions have counter intuitive physical properties, biology, psychology, is pretty vague and superficial, what is counter intuitive to him is not to others and if you dont bother to try and understand the meaning of religious symbolism (since you have the preconception its all bullshit anyways) then its hardly a surprise if something seems counterintuitive.
    He has little to no historical context for religious and philosophical thought, suffering from the delusion that causality is some how neccesarily exclusive from religious and spiritual thought, where as the fact is logic and debate as westerners know them were created by Greek mystics, causality being seen as some of the proof of the divine. Causality is found to various degrees in many other religions. It also ignores the fact that science itself is finding the limits of causal thinking and being forced to admit it cannot explain everything. (Godels incompleteness theorum, chaos theory, quantum physics etc)

    The idea of scientific causality and a universal order with logical explanations really was developed in Alexandria by the Hermeticists, mystical alchemists who's texts would later be redisovered by Europe and spark the renaissance and enlightenment, giving way to science itself. Newton himself was more interested in alchemy than he was in physics and he was no doubt highly influenced by it for all his discoveries.

    But these historical facts have little to no bearing on his theories because they do not fit his preconctions of when he came up with his abstract model of how the mind and reality are. The simple fact is people do come up with models to explain reality, whether religions or scientific theories these models are alwas neccesarily incomplete as we exist in an infinite reality, the problem comes when the models, the metaphors become literalized and people lose the context of what they mean and instead start bickering over who has the best metaphors.

    Science and especially positivism has its own myths, in the late 1800s they thought it wouldnt be long till science explained everything, then Einstein came around, now CERN has found neutrinos seem to go faster then the speed of light, which potentially puts a big kink in relativity, so it is the myths of science need to be updated. But it is absurd to claim that everyone who is spiritual excludes causality from their myths, or that they simply ignore what doesnt fit in to their own preconceptions, everyone does that, even scientists, many spiritual people however are aware of this fact and incorporate that inevitability as part of their models.

    Yes all religions are human abstractions, how else could we communicate them? that is not to say all mystical experiences can be put in terms of abstractions. Hermeticism, Buddhism are specifically designed by humans to try and get around preconceptions and the limitations of abstractions, Hermeticism using among other things an experimental method. Really at their core pretty well all religions from a mystical perspective are aware of these limitations and are really just explaining psychological processes that can lead to, or which go on in a mystical experience, but they don't make any sense if you dont study the symbolism and can only think in literal left brain terms. If you need proof that mystical experiences are possible, John Hopkins University did an experiment in which 80% of test subjects had such an experience their first time doing magic mushrooms, given subsequent experiments i wouldnt be surprised if the other 20% would eventually have them. Brain chemistry may have some causal relation to such a mystical experience, but that does not keep it from being mystical, to me it makes it even more mystical. Science is just now starting to realize the limitations of its ability to abstract its theories.

    Lets say we know for a fact evolution plays a role in why people are religious, according to your preconceptions this a causal explanation for why people believe in divinities, or its equally valid to use it as evidence that divinities created us to have natural inclinations to try and understand them.

    He is totally unaware of the idea that nature is divine, (humans are also part of nature) that science studies nature and so as the Hermeticists understood their is no separation in the study of nature and the study of the divine. We all just use different kinds of abstractions to make models which explain reality.

  410. Sticky I

    Myths of science? lol... Science gets updated because we don't have the complete picture yet, but it keeps developing and we're seeing more of it each day. I wouldn't be using an Itouch to wirelessly send this msg to you from my toilet if the "myth" of quantum physics wasn't true (and that truth leading to more, greater truths.) Religion isn't updating. It changed a couple times because science nipped at its heels. You can't say god lives in the clouds if we have a sattelite probe up there and you can't say the earths 7000yrs old if we have evidence showing its billions of years old. Religion was a good start for humanity. It got us on the path of building gods now (super computers and the technology to come, things bearing capabilities completely impossible to all other life forms we know of.) But now it's time for science to take over, because religion is (plainly said) completely r*tarded.

  411. slavescu

    The most idiotic documentary I ever watched. This guy is owing me some compensation money for losing my time. I am not a believer and not a religious person but I have to recognize that unfortunately science does not prove nothing in the field of our origins as well as in other fields. Every 10 or 20 years all the scientific accomplishments and known laws and theories are changing as proven to have been wrong partially or totally. Look at the world we are leaving in, where our only god is Dollar or Euro. We have no principles and our human kind can die at anytime without hoping to receive the smallest help. Helping your neighbor in our world looks as the strangest action a human can take. Apart from the undeniable technical progress and more bad quality food ( generating cancer and all kind of diseases unknown in other ages ) man did not improve at all his spiritual life. On the contrary we have no principles apart from the love for money, we do not read anymore, we are becoming day by day incredibly illiterate. Look around and you will notice that more and more people do not know to write or speak correctly their maternal language. What's nowaday our goal in life - to make more and more money which are never enough. And what is more disappointing we almost always do not know to spend our money for helping people and making a better world for everybody. As this guy did speak about Darwin I would remind him that Darwin during his last days on his death bed requested his wife and nurse to read for him verses from the Bible. He also called his Origin of Species the "Devil's Scripture". He also stated that if somebody would be able to explain how the first cell or primitive organisms ( such as bacteria or microbes ) appeared, then his all theory about the evolution of species would be busted and good for nothing. This means that Darwin himself did not understand how life appeared, and agreed that his theory may be wrong. But unlike this clever gentleman he understood that no human can claim to understand how life appeared and if we were created or not. This guy seems to be very clever as he can understand and explain everything. But in history people claiming to know everything proved to know nothing.

  412. ssiowi

    Wow: we've hundreds of points of entry into Thomson's fallacious reasoning. God = Big Mac. Really. Where's your FMRI as proof? As a scientist and practicing, skeptical, Catholic, I suggest Andy render his evidence or StFU and get back to the lab.

    More Sam Harris presentations, please and less of this dribble.

  413. madscirat

    I will never understand atheists. Culture has gifted us with a mimetic mechanism which keeps stupid people from thinking on their own and they actually actively try to dismantle it.

  414. joe silver

    God is a lie. God destroys reason its a cop out for real moral responsability, it justifies awful things in the name of a divine pursuit. Religion offers no explaination to the wonders of the universe it is an insult to humanities progress. religion is the last aspect of "dark age" thinking we still cling to. religion has no more real argument or defence to justify itself as truth all the supernatural aspects of religion all do over time get explained in rational terrestrial terms.eventually "supernatural" becomes science.

  415. Mark Broomer

    To stupid for science, try religion!

  416. get1949

    Bicker Bicker.

    You all cannot discuss the subject; so therefore, attack the speaker/writer? Is this how you discuss/debate?

    Let’s see how you all deal with this ‘question’?

    Are scientists materialists? That is, if empirical testing leads to predictable conclusions then perhaps a theory or (even a law) can only be IN a material setting? Further then, science deals with only working within the ‘world’ whereby ‘things’ can be: burnt, bent, cut, weighed, measured, diced, sliced, smelled, touched, and have color (amongst many other testable parameters)? Science deals with investigation of ‘things’ not…no-things; it deals with the concrete and not the abstract; correct?

    Then where is science with: numbers (just numbers), the (99.9999% nothing) ‘space’ between the electrons and the nucleus, and what about the quantum world or “particle dual-locality” or too the quantum foam? Stop the silly “God-of-the-gaps” mentality but also the silly “science-of-the-gaps” thingyness! Where is the empirical scientific testing (laws) observed in the silly ‘magic’ of: Parallel universes, multiple universes and bubble universes? Talk about Biblical miracles…science is doing Ouija board magic – it’s just an exercise of moving the goal post (or adding squares to the checker board) to attempt to give chance more life. Whenever the results drift toward the non-material dimensional ‘world’ science wants to stretch empirical grounds to infinite chance—aaah phooey. And all you scientists (materialists) must also then and therefore have spouses and (perhaps) children that you do not (no, cannot) love. For how can you define love materialistically when you cannot measure it? But then, what about: integrity, honesty, courage, music, art, poetry, or understanding the insides of a blackhole (Heck why go to the backside of the moon)? Not one has any Darwinistic survival value parameters (not one is materialistic).

    Are you scientists just: meat robots; a mistake of sperm and egg (just a lucky shot of splurge from your father that made you, you and not me?); a cosmic mote, cast-off by mistake from a typical exploding star and set adrift in the great cosmic dark? OR do you seek friendships, are you a conscious observer and moral agent; do you know (somehow intuitively) the difference between right and wrong? Why do you seek an apology when you have wronged someone…are you just weak-minded or is that your conscience speaking? Why are ALL people (especially atheists and materialists) concerned about: fairness, perfection, and trust (none of these three things can possibly be allowed in this materialistic world because of the law of entropy). Scientists (do know) that the “creation is caught in the bondage of decay” it’s called the second law of thermodynamics. So you scientists (and materialists) learn by your own physics laws…set into the universe…and stop the complaining! Come-on let’s reason together; scientists need to be open-minded, to call out for new, great, and unsearchable things currently not known…to test all these new things, hanging on to that which is the truth -- that which is good and works repeatedly. Let’s drop the selfish tone and bickering childishness…and let’s figure out this strange and foreign land of time we are all stuck in…before these chemical bags of mostly water run out…of time (and water)!

    We all just love (oops bad word) taking things apart; doing a reductionists procedure (on life and ‘things’) and never wondering how it all fits together (GUT or GOD). Relationship people…in both numbers and in discussions, philosophy, theology, and science! Stop the food fight and let’s chow down on the subject!!

  417. Achems_Razor

    @get1949:

    Nothing but "Gish Gallop"...what is your point?

  418. Ellsworth Campbell

    get1949, is poetry not a means of displaying intellect in hopes of obtaining a mate? or confidence from a potential ally in an attempt to achieve a common goal of survival?...and thus more opportunity to find a mate.

    what about integrity and honesty? We survive in groups because we are not well adapted to surviving alone. If we do not make regular displays of integrity and honesty to our peers, how can we expect that in return whilst achieving the common goal of survival?

    i don't have desire to break down the rest of your list...but we are all driven by a biological imperative. Some choose to coopt that goal-behavior to other things...like having a legacy. A memetic, yet still darwinian mode of survival to the next generation.

    I agree, relationships have been key to our evolution. they drive our psychology and we should rejoice in our empathetic interactions. embrace the fact that we evolved in small groups...and may potentially be able to expand our "green beards" to all mankind...and someday all conscious creatures.

    None of this proves we don't evolve...it only supports it.

  419. AlfBeta

    Yes, let us hear sober rational response to get1949's comparison of the precariousness and limitations and arena of science. No cheap escapes for God's sake, and for Einstein's sake. If the bar is set too high, slide on under.

  420. thenesteamonster

    first the guy said that while i'm listening to him i'm thinking about another conversation (yeah right), then he goes about children thinking that a mouse that's been eaten by a croc still has thoughts/emotions, that's about when i conclude he's making stuff up
    goodbye mr. quack

  421. What's Up Docs?

    The summary written for this documentary isn't accurate. This documentary is atheist propaganda - it denigrates religion while promoting the disbelief in God.

    Andy Thomson's remark: "If you understand the psychology of the Big Mac meal, then you would understand the psychology of religion." This remark and others quite plainly denigrate religion and those who believe in God. Although many would claim this remark is accurate in demonstrating that prehistoric hominid drives influence the current homo sapien population, one cannot deny that framing religion in this manner, was, shall we say, a "juicy" comment?

    During the question period at the end of the lecture, Andy claims that the main reason why people become atheist is because they are intelligent and educated enough to fight the natural inclination to believe in God. He claims that disbelief takes more effort than faith. Like any propoganda effort, the aim is to use shame and embarrassment to enlist members, rather than reason.

    Andy, we all know that many people became atheists because they felt persecuted under religion. People didn't want to feel bad for having promiscuous sex nor did they want to submit to a higher power when deciding on how to live their lives. Personal experience is a bigger deciding factor as to who becomes an atheist or not.

    It's personal, Andy, and you know it.

    Andy Thomson uses scienitific hypotheses (since nothing in this lecture is established scientific fact - at least as a whole) to encourage the bigoted view that people who believe in God are really just believing in an imaginary friend, that morality came before religion and that religion, all in all, is something for the "primitives" in society rather than the genteel men and women from the atheist camp.

    I enjoy science. I consider myself to be closer to an agnostic than anything. And, will say it again: Extreme skeptics are just as bad as true believers.

  422. LiquidCourage

    "People who believe in God are really just believing in an imaginary friend, morality came before religion and religion, all in all, is something for the 'primitives' in society"

    You got that exactly right! Sadly, the rest of your text is nonsense. I especially liked this one:

    "many people became atheists because they ... didn't want to feel bad for having promiscuous sex"

    Hahahahahahahahahaha. You are American, right?

  423. Large In The Margin

    The only thing that is propaganda is your response. Religious fanatics and religion itself to the core contribute to more hate and indifference than anything else. The man makes some valid points, you make none. Do you also think the sun is 17 miles away? It's people like you that not only gladly eat the offal of ancient societies, but are downright smug about it.

  424. Mark Upton

    ugh how ya'll comment??

  425. Alta Smith

    Amen Mike!!! I have received Jesus and proud of it!

  426. bumpercrop

    This documentary explains the biology of religion. The neural pathways that allowed adaptation behaviors for survival are the same neural pathways that induce concept of religion. micro to macro. MRI studies,
    Haunting science from female 1.5 million years ago. A sensitive insertion on the marriage of Charles Darwin was included. - hint: "I married an atheist!" useful information all round. 30 min. mind expanding

  427. Guest

    What!? Science is not about making assumptions? That's one step of the Scientific Method, it's called Hypothesis. What does it means "if YOU experiments in quantum mechanics", it's not necessary that he confirms that theory, it has already been confirmed and you try to use it for an argument. And this principle you mentioned, called the Heisenberg Principle is almost a hundred years old, is not a "new finding". I don't know your education, but in Physics Concepts, it should be improved.

  428. Bala Murugan

    Life do purposefull things everyday ,but what is the purpose of life?
    Life is purposeless.All of us all biology is just an extension of physics and chemistry.This purposelessness combined with uncertainity of life and its future is an enough combustible mixture to falme disorderliness within man ,in his society.Religion and Gods are best innovations of men to save from this. But today we are not working Religion.They are at crossroads.Religious difference killed millions.Gods need edition.Something like a single window God.

  429. Ow_Naw_Way

    I could claim that monkeys created the earth i could write a book about it and give the monkeys funky names but that does not mean the earth was really created by monkeys.

    Why doesn't god give us a cure for diseases like cancer?

    you would think if an intelligent being created something so complex as life you would think he would want it to take care of his people keeping them healthy and living longer yet thousands of people die each year from diseases some that we don't have cures for.

    That is like saying a parent has the right to choose if they look after their child or not, It is a parents duty to take care of their child whether they want to or not.

    If there really is a GOD then its clear we have been abandoned he doesn't care about you, me or anyone else so accept the facts.

  430. LoggerheadShrike

    Any comment that explains religion as a normal phenomenon, as mundane as anything else we do, will of course seem like a "juicy" comment ... but only because the believer's mind revolts at the idea religion could be anything other than what it claims to be, and reacts in a swift, intense, and defensive manner to any notions of the sort.

    The "unbeliever" and the idea of non-belief is paid a great deal of attention in most religions; believers are set up to reject any and all concepts of non-belief, and to purge themselves of them ("faith is weak" etc).

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