Bryan & Anthony, Seventh Day Adventists… Kinda |404|

#22
Alex,

Maybe I am too literal minded but I don't understand what you mean by the question, "Is Christianity worth saving?". It sounds to me like you are implying Christianity is going to disappear and skeptiko listeners have the power to prevent that.

Could you please clarify what you are asking?

What is "saving Christianity"?

What is "not saving Christianity"?


Thanks
I just meant that there seems to be a lot of public discourse regarding reforming / modernizing / re-imagining Christianity... so I'm just questioning how much effort we need to put into that.
 
#23
Coincidentally, I am reading a fascinating new book about the severe problems associated with Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Darwin-Dev...id=1551807916&sr=8-1&keywords=darwin+devolves

I am about half way through, and it introduces an interesting new argument as to why natural selection won't work on a big scale. I feel that as one of your guests said, Christianity may need to drop some of its ideas to stay relevant, but this book indicates that the rest of society - and particular science - may soon be forced to move in the direction of spirituality.

I have felt for a long time that some form of ID is unavoidable, but this book explains how one experiment in particular has enabled evolution to be explored in the laboratory - so maybe NS can be dragged into the realm of something experimentally testable (so it can be discarded!).

It might be tough to read the book if you don't have some science background, but if you do, I'd highly recommend it to everyone here.
I'll finish the book (and maybe re-read it) before I start a new thread and try and explain that argument in detail, but I hope Bryan and Anthony are going to stick around so we can discuss the larger significance of some form of Intelligent Design right here.

More generally, I think that the religious groups could usefully contribute to a new spirituality (which is what I think this podcast is all about), if they dropped their exclusivity and some of their dogma - they should realise that by far the most important thing is to realise that there really is a spiritual domain.

David
great. why don't you see if Behe will come on skeptiko.
 
#24
Been listening for about 4 years now. Skeptiko and Miguel’s Aeon Byte are must listens for me. Always look forward to a new show each week. Alex I agree with you on a lot of things, but with all due respect. You pose a loaded bomb question like “Is Christianity worth saving?” Not just to anyone, but to two Seventh Day Adventist? Who go on to agree with you and say well yeah, it was all about control. The irony is too rich for me. I get it. Us Christian’s are easy targets but dude I would rather hear you try to pin some hard questions to this professor of religious studies Greg Carlwood just had on Dr Diana Pasulka. Anyways thanks. Very grateful
hey NJ... glad you're here. I love miguel but please don't hold me to his standard of intros... there's no way I can compete :)

Bryan has become a friend so I wanted to invite him on the show. I know I've covered this territory before, the topic never get stale for me :)
 
#25
Deciding whether or not Christianity is worth saving is rather easy for anyone who longs to at last enter a world free of pain, fear and worry. For our Soul a place of perpetual bliss, an everlasting high better than any drug or sexual experience. A number of near death experiencers who have had what are classified at the Near Death Experience Research Foundation as, Exceptional Experiences will vouch that such a place indeed exists. Jesus promises such a place to all who are willing to live by his Gospel instructions. Jesus said, "My Kingdom is not of this world." For me the question is never whether Christianity is worth saving but instead, "Dear Jesus, when may I come to the Gate?"
yeah but don't some of those nde accounts get to the same place without JC?

BTW I think most Christians miss out on the best argument they have which is basically a rework of "pastor jeff" value proposition... that is, given all we know, is it mainstream, liberal, non-crazy Christianity a pretty darn good investment/bet?
 
#26
If God loves us, I imagine we have the relationship backwards within christianity. We are all the divine beings on the cross. It's no wonder we are so cruel to each other. I think flaws are simply part of the natural and limited creativity we all share. How else to explain extreme unnecessary suffering?

Oh! Pin yourself to a cross and declare it necesary and good. I can't worship that. Too many suicides, wars, famine, flesh eating bacteria, bodies dissolved in acid. The mere potential of horror disproves the model christianity has created. Also, the deity knows nothing more than what we know!

Is god a special category? Sure why not, but not from this side of the veil. From this side, god owes us an explanation. Religion is too entitled to offer hope, but instead wallows in delusion, excuses, and ignorance. So what if the brain is not the mind? We are still here.
it always seemed to me that the non-dual people are a little bit closer to the truth. there is an ocean (maybe of love)... we're waves
 
#27
great. why don't you see if Behe will come on skeptiko.
I have already sent him and an email which included some details of Skeptiko, and if he replies I will certainly ask him to come on. This may take some time because I suspect he is groaning under the weight of emails - pleasant and unpleasant!

Realistically, he may be under too many constraints to risk a free - wheeling Skeptiko interview - he needs to avoid treading on the toes of the Discovery Institute (which outside of ID, seems to be pretty focused on Christianity), then there are the toes of the science community, and maybe his local church.....

You should read his book, Alex.

David
 
#28
I have already sent him and an email which included some details of Skeptiko, and if he replies I will certainly ask him to come on. This may take some time because I suspect he is groaning under the weight of emails - pleasant and unpleasant!

Realistically, he may be under too many constraints to risk a free - wheeling Skeptiko interview - he needs to avoid treading on the toes of the Discovery Institute (which outside of ID, seems to be pretty focused on Christianity), then there are the toes of the science community, and maybe his local church.....

You should read his book, Alex.

David
great david thanks. I'll certainly read it if he comes on :)
 
#29
Dude you say what I feel l, but have trouble expressing verbally. I deal with emotion and intuition more than reason.
What books have you read that have helped you tremendously and how often do you read a day or week? Good post
Thanks Bacc, I read constantly throughout the day (online and print combined). A lot of my work is overseas, so I work at night a lot when not on travel. I read the prominent philosophers, but often use comprehensive philosophy references. I don't have time to suffer through ancient and reformation philosophers trying to prove the existence of God. I am usually taking a graduate level course at any given time. I will select Stanford or MIT courses and order their texts used online, and take the course myself (genetics mostly).

I read celebrity skeptics (both their books and journalistic garbage) and keep up with what they determine to be 'good science' - this sharpens my ability to discern, not the what-where-when-who of that which composes peoples' rationality (facts), but rather how and why they think it (soundness and logical calculus). I have to be honest, there are not many books which bear depth into such a topic. Wittgenstein's Tractus? Schopenhauer? Nietzsche maybe?

Inside an elevator scene in the movie Zero Dark Thirty, when the Director of the CIA, John Brennan asked his intelligence lead, what he thought of Maya, the CIA operative who was given credit in cinematic-society for finding Bin Laden, "What do you think of the girl?" His project lead replies, "I think she's fuckin' smart." To which Brennan replies, "We're all smart, Jeremy."

We're all smart. But for me, I do not care what a person has memorized. I do not care what quiver of pattern recognition tricks they have up their sleeve - nor what clever sounding one-liner they can whip off. I don't care if they have a PhD. I look for the ability to start from a position of innocence (epoché ) - then carry a framework of and leverage, inference versus probative critical path risk (hypothesis). THAT... is the essence of acumen.

Those who (non-innocently) dwell at the bottom of this chart... and practice what is called 'Nelsonian inference or Nelsonian knowledge'. I tend to be pretty hard on them. And for good reason - cultivated ignorance causes suffering.

Map of Inference Draw.png
 
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#30
great david thanks. I'll certainly read it if he comes on :)
I think you should anyway, because it would give you some perspective about the incredible head in the sands attitude of conventional biology. There are groups trying to break free, but they don't really know where to go if they don't like ID!

Near the end of his book, Behe explicitly brings in the fact that mind - our minds - were excluded from science early on, and that that has turned out to be a fatal flaw. This is something that has figured on here quite a bit. He deliberately left open just exactly what sort of mind could be responsible for creating life. In my email to him, I proposed that maybe it would make sense to think of a group of minds, something like us. As I pointed out to him, our world would look pretty much like magic to someone from the 19th century. The magic has come from cooperation and building one layer on top of another. Maybe 'we' made the place to explore (or something!).

There are a lot of Skeptiko connections in his book.

David
 
#31
A question I have is whether or not the delay in the formation of institutional christianity reflects early skepticism of the meaning of Jesus' life. Who was the opposition? The pagans sure, and Jews, but where are their writings prior to 200 A.D.? Anyone know? Or did no one care until they started getting power through land donations? Not having to 'snip snip' as an adult helped. A lot!


Also Jesus could write! Probably. There are some divine words missing from history!
 
#32
Thanks Bacc, I read constantly throughout the day (online and print combined). A lot of my work is overseas, so I work at night a lot when not on travel. I read the prominent philosophers, but often use comprehensive philosophy references. I don't have time to suffer through ancient and reformation philosophers trying to prove the existence of God. I am usually taking a graduate level course at any given time. I will select Stanford or MIT courses and order their texts used online, and take the course myself (genetics mostly).

I read celebrity skeptics (both their books and journalistic garbage) and keep up with what they determine to be 'good science' - this sharpens my ability to discern, not the what-where-when-who of that which composes peoples' rationality (facts), but rather how and why they think it (soundness and logical calculus). I have to be honest, there are not many books which bear depth into such a topic. Wittgenstein's Tractus? Schopenhauer? Nietzsche maybe?

Inside an elevator scene in the movie Zero Dark Thirty, when the Director of the CIA, John Brennan asked his intelligence lead, what he thought of Maya, the CIA operative who was given credit in cinematic-society for finding Bin Laden, "What do you think of the girl?" His project lead replies, "I think she's fuckin' smart." To which Brennan replies, "We're all smart, Jeremy."

We're all smart. But for me, I do not care what a person has memorized. I do not care what quiver of pattern recognition tricks they have up their sleeve - nor what clever sounding one-liner they can whip off. I don't care if they have a PhD. I look for the ability to start from a position of innocence (epoché ) - then carry a framework of and leverage, inference versus probative critical path risk (hypothesis). THAT... is the essence of acumen.

Those who (non-innocently) dwell at the bottom of this chart... and practice what is called 'Nelsonian inference or Nelsonian knowledge'. I tend to be pretty hard on them. And for good reason - cultivated ignorance causes suffering.
nice graphic... not sure I totally understand it :)
ET... I know yr more into process than resting on any sort of final conclusion, but where do you come down on:
- climate change 97% consensus...
- vaccines are yummy... protect the heard
 
#33
nice graphic... not sure I totally understand it :)
ET... I know yr more into process than resting on any sort of final conclusion, but where do you come down on:
- climate change 97% consensus...
- vaccines are yummy... protect the heard
hehe... :) You actually think I am going to answer those questions in a public forum?

Just kidding...

Anthropogenic climate change is compelling, but uses consilient induction, when deductive means are available, yet we choose to avoid them. I have a problem with that. Consilient induction is strong, but not as strong as deduction. Plus the '97%' quote comes from this line in the meta-study which polled the 12,000 studies on climate change:

“We analyze the evolution of the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming (AGW) in the peer-reviewed scientific literature, examining 11, 944 climate abstracts from 1991–2011 matching the topics ‘global climate change’ or ‘global warming’. We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW, 32.6% endorsed AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and 0.3% were uncertain about the cause of global warming. Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming.”²​
Two thirds of scientists who researched 'global warming' kept mute on the very matter they were studying. This bothers me a great deal. Abstracts often cite others' conclusions as part of their prior art summary - not meant to be a 'conclusion' of their own study. The meta-study did not differentiate that here in the '32.6%'. Taken together, these two flaws constitute an influence called pluralistic ignorance (very Lindy). I was a big fan of the '97%' quote until I actually read it. If a junior researcher at my lab had written this statement, I would have kicked their ass and told them to go develop it (or the study if necessary) into a more coherent form.
But, six things bother me

1. The sudden and recent change in the 11 degree Variation between the Magnetic North Pole and Geographic (True) North Pole (I am a navigator)
2. The rise in geothermal gradient observed by Woods Hole Institute, concerns me versus past observations (1920 https://pubs.usgs.gov/bul/0701/report.pdf).
3. In my carbon versus global temperature models I keep having to readjust my regression alignments in order to make the Mauna Loa carbon dioxide curve keep pace with the observed temperature rise. Temps are possibly outpacing carbon ppm's - depending upon how you align the data (see chart below - the fourth time I have had to change the relevant timescale in order to get a regression alignment)...
4. Deep sea temperature gradients are rising faster than shallow ocean temps.
5. Ocean temperature increases are outpacing atmospheric temperature increases. As if the oceans are heating the atmosphere and not vica-versa.
6. The drop off in temps from both the World War II demobilization and the 9/11 moratorium on aviation was too fast, as compared to our current models - which predicted no drop off. Yet it did happen, and dramatically so in both cases. I suppose this is good news?

But even given all this, I still favor AGW as the primary argument.

Global CO2 and Temperature Increase thru 2018.png
 
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#35
Religion is just to fickle. If people were to follow Matthew Luke and whoever according to the scriptures and all of a sudden the world turns less cruel? What happens when one of those people gets a disease and dies leaving friends and family sad and disheartened. There's a chance of bitterness and turning away from religion because God took away someone you loved without leaving an answer. I've known many people who left denominations after family or friends death. It's happened with my own family. Why God why take my child?
Priest-it's God's plan read chapter blah blah blah
 
#36
nice graphic... not sure I totally understand it :)
ET... I know yr more into process than resting on any sort of final conclusion, but where do you come down on:
- climate change 97% consensus...
- vaccines are yummy... protect the heard
Re: Vaccines

1. I almost died at 6 months of age from the measles.

2. My son is permanently disabled from the pertussis vaccine (brain inflammation encephalitis).

The vaccine injury award court game is completely rigged. It is a mechanism to make those who know nothing about the process, feel good. That is about it.

So you tell me what to think. I toss my hands up and work on earning the $2.6 million needed to care for my son after I am gone and dead. Maybe 53 vaccinations is not such a well thought out idea, given that the following is happening - and all started in 1995 (and is well documented):

This is consilient induction modus praesens - the same mode of inference used to establish the case for AGW:

what to look for in vaccinials.png
 
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#37
Deciding whether or not Christianity is worth saving is rather easy for anyone who longs to at last enter a world free of pain, fear and worry. For our Soul a place of perpetual bliss, an everlasting high better than any drug or sexual experience. A number of near death experiencers who have had what are classified at the Near Death Experience Research Foundation as, Exceptional Experiences will vouch that such a place indeed exists. Jesus promises such a place to all who are willing to live by his Gospel instructions. Jesus said, "My Kingdom is not of this world." For me the question is never whether Christianity is worth saving but instead, "Dear Jesus, when may I come to the Gate?"
Here’s the issue with that imo. Yes people seem to experience Jesus during NDEs, but there’s a lot to consider regarding this.

1) A Christian may have an NDE and encounter a being of light or other human looking entity, feel some love, and conclude that it MUST be Jesus. Then they tell everybody that they met Jesus.

2) That said, some people do report seeing a being which actually looks like our conception of Jesus. And some may actually be told (I don’t know) that they are encountering Jesus. I’m not going to sit here and say that I know that these people aren’t actually encountering the spirit of Jesus (whatever that means), perhaps they are. But this only occurs in Western societies, or if it occurs in somebody in the East, that person had been exposed to Christianity in the past. At least according to my research, this is the case. If more thorough academic research comes out which shows this wrong, I’m happy to ammend my position on it.

3) Here on Earth we know through quantum physics, the placebo effect, and the psi research that our thoughts affect matter here. However, what NDErs and Astral travelers tell us is that when we visit other realms free from our body, our ability to manipulate our surroundings is enhanced majorly. Jurgen Ziewe likens our nervous system to a container which holds all of our subconscious thoughts in a container. We can allow some thoughts out of the container if we want. But when we go to some of these other NDE/OBE realms, it seems that the container is gone and that our consciousness and subconsciousness spills into our surroundings, and can help shape our reality. This helps explain why there are so many cultural differences in NDEs, despite the similarities.

For these reasons, I’m wary of people using Jesus in NDEs as evidence backing Christianity. But I have to be honest and say that it doesn’t hurt their case. But the fact that Easterners don’t seem to experience Jesus doesn’t help their case much at all. Neither does some of the other points I raised above.

I also think it’s possible that Jesus was/is spiritually advanced or powerful and that all of this consensual conscious focus on him has made the experiences of him more powerful (wild speculation here), and that people are actually encountering him, but this doesn’t make all of the Bible true.
 
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#39
There's a chance of bitterness and turning away from religion because God took away someone you loved without leaving an answer. I've known many people who left denominations after family or friends death. It's happened with my own family. Why God why take my child?
Priest-it's God's plan read chapter blah blah blah
Well, you might take this reply as just more blah, blah blah, but if anyone should have turned away from both God and religion it would be me. Because of a learning disability I made my living doing physical labor as a carpenter in heavy construction and later as a farmer. Most of those strenuous days I suffered with back pain caused by a fall as a ten year old child. I worked very hard in both of my marriages to provide for each wife and our children in turn with the things they needed including, next to my day job, building houses for them. But each left me in favor of other men taking the children with them. I had a stroke seven years ago that left me too blind to drive so nowadays I bicycle from place to place when possible, winter and summer. Sure, I'm a bit bitter about all the hardship but on the other hand I have a lot to be thankful for too. Although I don't care much for any religion because of all the bullshit many of them have pasted on the Truths that are important, I will never abandon my belief that God has been watching and has a better place for me. I'm age 70 so it shouldn't be too long now.
 
#40
Thanks for jumping into this ES. we've talked about this topic a lot on Skeptiko so if we get very far into this we may want to merge it into another thread, but it's going to be fun to get your breakdown of the logic.

Anthropogenic climate change is compelling, but uses consilient induction, when deductive means are available, yet we choose to avoid them. I have a problem with that.
yes, compelling and real, but it seems to be used as a misdirection. I'd love to see unbiased climate scientists provide honest policymakers good data regarding the extent of man-made climate effects, but what we're getting is nowhere close to that.

Plus the '97%' quote comes from this line in the meta-study which polled the 12,000 studies on climate change:

“We analyze the evolution of the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming (AGW) in the peer-reviewed scientific literature, examining 11, 944 climate abstracts from 1991–2011 matching the topics ‘global climate change’ or ‘global warming’. We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW, 32.6% endorsed AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and 0.3% were uncertain about the cause of global warming. Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming.”²​
the Cook paper has even bigger problems as dr judith curry points out here:
What is there a 97% consensus about? | Climate Etc.
It's hard to view these shenanigans as anything other than rigged science. this becomes even more evident when we look at how much traction such an obviously shoddy study received... it was featured on the top of the NASA page for years and referenced by obama over and over again even though it was identified as fake science from the beginning.

So I'm left wondering where these human factor figures into your analysis?


But, six things bother me
seems to me that sea level is the biggie here. we know that even a modest rise in sea level would be catastrophic for millions of people. fortunately, and contrary to what the alarmist predicted, such a sea level rise has not occurred:
Special Report on Sea Level Rise | Climate Etc.

The other thing that really peeves me about this discussion is the lack of understanding of the diff between science and policy. I mean, we need good science, but at the end of the day we have to make policy decisions -- how will we save the polar bears... stop the russians/chinese/north koreans... be energy independent... restore the fish population... etc. and, as we all know, these are highly political and super messy with all the special interests trying to grab there share, but all that is amped up a hundred times over because this is the first science policy issue to go global... i.e. local/national policy is meaningless here. it seems clear to me that the real players who are behind the arm-waving alarmists have used big science to push their old globalist-enslavement agenda. they're trying to create a global carbon currency and use it to control, course, and profit on a scale we've never seen before.
 
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