Victor Stenger

#2
Sad loss, but this made me face palm:

he wasn’t just about proving believers wrong, but about educating them, helping them see what is right, because he wanted to help those who believed harmful nonsense.
 
#4
Bizarre obit claim: "Most important I think was his fearless work showing how science actually disproves God, rather than just saying as other scientists did that science “had no need of that hypothesis.” "

That I gotta see.
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#5
Bizarre obit claim: "Most important I think was his fearless work showing how science actually disproves God, rather than just saying as other scientists did that science “had no need of that hypothesis.” "

That I gotta see.
Maybe I'm misremembering, but I recall a lot of it being appeals to the unproven Multiverse?
 
#7
When I read obituaries of vocal atheists like Stenger, I wonder how they got that way? Their motivations are far more interesting than their conclusions, but they always seem to be glossed into hagiography. It would be great to know what life event made them want to dedicate every spare hour to a polemical approach to science.
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#8
I don't think we should be celebrating Stenger's death. Seems a bad road to go down...

When I read obituaries of vocal atheists like Stenger, I wonder how they got that way? Their motivations are far more interesting than their conclusions, but they always seem to be glossed into hagiography. It would be great to know what life event made them want to dedicate every spare hour to a polemical approach to science.
Nagel & Tart talk about the release materialism offers from the "Cosmic Authority Problem". A lot of people seem to have strong - possibly subconscious - animosity toward a deity. I can't really fathom why anyone would be gleeful about the conclusions of materialism otherwise.

Stenger also seemed to think some kind of optimistic humanism simply follows from materialism - not sure how else to explain the "Science => Moon, Religion => 9/11" comment. Would be curious to see why he believed that.
 
#12
I don't think we should be celebrating Stenger's death. Seems a bad road to go down...
It is a bad road to go down. But I don't see any atheists who have given any hope in this very dark world. The job of an atheist is to extinguish the light and to kill all hope. The job of the atheist is to remind us that the world is Godless and hopeless (regardless of whether it is true or not).
 
#14
It is a bad road to go down. But I don't see any atheists who have given any hope in this very dark world. The job of an atheist is to extinguish the light and to kill all hope. The job of the atheist is to remind us that the world is Godless and hopeless (regardless of whether it is true or not).
What a stupid comment. You lump an entire group of people into one basket. I might not agree with the new atheist movement, but many of them helped people break free of their oppressive religious beliefs that were making them miserable, guilty, self loathing etc. This is something I can admire them for, the only problem is that it also makes them uncritically dismiss psi etc, because of its (wrongful) association with religious and spiritual beliefs.
 
#16
A man with a very good intellect with many academic achievements but I've come across wiser "nobodies". Absolutely ridiculous to postulate there's no "God " or God can't exist ...
His pronouncements on near death experiences were based on Keith Augustine's work, I believe and he hadn't even read the literature properly declaring (roughly) there is no evidence at all for real OBE's during NDE. Here is an excerpt from an article in the Huffington Post.


"In my own writing on the subject (Stenger 2011b, 2012), I have pointed out that the supernatural interpretation of near-death experiences, if true, can easily be verified scientifically. To provide a specific example, place a target such as a card with some random numbers on it on a high shelf facing the ceiling of the operating room so that it is unreadable not only to the patient on the table but to the hospital staff in the room. Then if a patient has an NDE that involves the commonly reported sensation of moving outside her body and floating above the operating table, she should be able to read that number.

This experiment has been tried several times without success. So have other attempts to provide verifiable evidence -- what researchers in the field call "veridical perception" (Holden 2009, p. 209). "

Note that he stated that the experiment has been tried several times without success .This is classic sceptical slight of hand because when the "rational herd" read this they can safely continue to dismiss the preposterous idea of OBE's....

In fact as far as I know the only patient that has ever had an OBE in a "research area" was patient 10 (and one other) in Penny Sartori's study and he said he wasn't looking in that direction and the other didn't float up high enough. Madeline Lawrence's LED on top of a wardrobe in an emergency room was never seen by anyone, true, but no one had an OBE and anyway the experiment was abandoned when someone climbed up to look at it.

Bruce Greyson tried it with patients having defibrillator implants fitted where they have to have their hearts stopped for a thirty seconds or so but no one had an OBE.
Parnia tried hard in Southampton but only four patients had an NDE of any kind with no OBE. We know what is currently occurring with Aware of course at least we did 9 months ago.

I hope Victor has had a pleasant entry into the next world and is eating lots of humble pie
 
#17
It is a bad road to go down. But I don't see any atheists who have given any hope in this very dark world. The job of an atheist is to extinguish the light and to kill all hope. The job of the atheist is to remind us that the world is Godless and hopeless (regardless of whether it is true or not).
Well said.
 
#18
What a stupid comment. You lump an entire group of people into one basket. I might not agree with the new atheist movement, but many of them helped people break free of their oppressive religious beliefs that were making them miserable, guilty, self loathing etc. This is something I can admire them for, the only problem is that it also makes them uncritically dismiss psi etc, because of its (wrongful) association with religious and spiritual beliefs.
That's nice. But in the end, I still think there's a spirit world. From a physics point of view, it's the only explanation that makes sense. I don't buy this "nobody understands" atheist propaganda. There are a ton of problems with the atheist belief system. Shall I name them? The physics constants have no known cause. This fine tuned universe just popped into existence from "no known cause". There is nothing in physics (mass, distance, charge, spin, acceleration, time, etc...) that can account for consciousness. This whole idea that the universe came from randomness is not physics, not proven, but is merely conjecture.

I do believe in God and I love the Creator, but I reject Christian dogma. I reject atheist dogma as nonsense as well. As far as I'm concerned, the only religion that is worth a darn is Spiritualism. Everything else is just a pile of useless cynicism.
 
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