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Featured Spectrum of theistic probability

Discussion in 'Theism' started by Hubert Farnsworth, Jan 7, 2019.

  1. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest Ignorant Heathen Libertarian Capitalist
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    I agree.
    But I was in a pedantic mood when I posted.
     
  2. Curious George

    Curious George Veteran Member

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    6.9 if we must.

    Though I am not a fan of this scale, I find it interesting that so many people seem to object to it on an unreasonable basis.
     
  3. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva
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    1. Strong theist. 100% probability of God. In the words of C.G. Jung: "I do not believe, I know."
     
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  4. BenFranklinFan

    BenFranklinFan Happiness is a journey, not a destination.

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    2-De facto Theist
     
  5. David T

    David T Well-Known Member
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    The problem with dawkins scale is dawkins actually. He is convinced the topic is bigfoot. The problem is his experts are young earth creationists intelligent designists etc.

    So based on a bias such as that i would say thw scale is nonsense before it became a scale.
     
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  6. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Riboflavin
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    I have issues with the scale:

    - it assumes not only monotheism, but only one god-claim. You really need one scale (or set of scales - see below) per purported god.

    - it implies that as certainty of belief in a god decreases, certainty of belief in that god's non-existence increases, and vice versa. In reality, the claim that a god exists and the claim that the god doesn't exist are separate claims. They aren't connected in some sort of zero-sum game.

    That being said, I live my life as if gods are irrelevant. Whether this means they don't exist at all or whether they exist and have no measurable impact on anything we can observe really doesn't matter to me.

    Every purported god that I've been presented with has had no evidence for its existence (or rather, evidence for its existence and non-existence has been equally strong). If the theist who's proposing the god wants to argue that the god only seems to us like it doesn't exist... go ahead, but I still won't see how this leaves room for any religious claims to be justified.
     
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  7. sayak83

    sayak83 Well-Known Member
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    1...regarding the existence of neutral monism of Brahman.
    4....regarding the existence of god like beings that have emerged from Brahman and exist in some sort of reality.
    7....regarding existence of creator god(s) that is answering prayers, punishing the wicked, sending people to heaven or hell etc.
     
  8. Quintessence

    Quintessence Tale Weaver
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    I remember taking a gander at some of Dawkin's writings on "religion" and finding them wanting because of its telescopic fixation on only certain religious and theological paradigms. This scale has the same issue, which others have already pointed out in this thread. It also suffers from the problem of approaching the issue probabilistically. Given existential questions are philosophical, it doesn't make sense to assess them in terms of mathematical (and by extension, quantifiable and objective) probabilities.

    That said, I'm of the general sentiment that humans are not omniscient and are not omnipresent. Therefore, human knowledge is biased and limited. Any articulation of reality - of what exists and what does not - is a map of the territory and a construct. I consider it an important personal and cultural responsibility for humans to be mindful in their construct creation. Ask yourself why you paint your landscape in the way you do, and whether or not it reflects your personal or cultural values. Ask yourself how it impacts your day to day life and those of others around you. What does your declaration of being (a)theist actually mean to you? That is what matters.
    For many, it doesn't mean much of anything. (A)theism isn't an important component of their personal or cultural identity and has little to no impact on their lives or those around them.
     
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  9. columbus

    columbus Conservative Catholic from Hell

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    The thing is,
    the world Dawkins(and his audience) live in is overwhelmingly dominated by Abrahamic monotheism. Such religionists are the ones doing the proselytizing and enforcing of primitive ethics and stymieing science and things like that. So, of course, that's the religious paradigms he generally refers to.
    He could dilute his message with a million qualifiers, but why should he bother? If the shoe doesn't fit, then don't wear it.
    Tom
     
  10. Quintessence

    Quintessence Tale Weaver
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    Nah, he didn't need to dilute his message with qualifiers. Frankly, as a scientist, he is well aware of the importance of using correct and precise terminology, as well as the importance of outlining operational definitions for polysemic terms. Doing that wouldn't require toning down his language at all. Just better writing. To be fair, many scientists kind of are garbage writers, though, and Dawkin's writing was never the greatest (I had to read quite a few of his works in college while studying biological evolution). I expected too much of him, but it's frustrating all the same. :shrug:
     
  11. DavidMcCann

    DavidMcCann Well-Known Member

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    DigitalArtist and Quintessence hit the nail on the head: Dawkins failed (as he usually does) by confusing theism with monotheism. And Columbus failed (as he often does) by trying to give an atheist a free pass. Dawkins is supposed to be a scholar. He held a professorship. He trades on that. Therefore, he should address theism clearly and not just pick the tempting target.

    So, rant over. What's my position? On theism, my rating is (1). On belief in "God", it's probably (5). See the difference?
     
  12. columbus

    columbus Conservative Catholic from Hell

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    But the majority of people aren't as sophisticated as you are. Dawkins isn't trying to reach people like you. You already get it.

    When I first came to RF I had trouble viewing your worldview as "religious". It's just too rational and personal.
    Tom
     
  13. Yazata

    Yazata New Member

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    Just for the sake of producing an answer in this thread, I'll say that I'm probably a 6. I'm a de-facto atheist in the sense that deities don't play any role in my daily life.

    But I agree with earlier posts that this doesn't have much to do with my estimate of the probability of a deity existing. That's going to be something that beings like ourselves might have little ability to estimate.

    And a great deal depends on how we conceive of the deity. If 'God' means the figure who features so prominently in Judeo-Christian and Islamic tradition, then I just have a hard time believing that the ultimate principle of the universe and being itself would behave in such a way. So I kind of intuitively assign a very low probability to the deities of the monotheistic traditions. That's where I consider myself a 6.

    But... if we conceive of 'God' as whatever fulfills the set of metaphysical functions traditionally referred to by natural theology, first-cause, source of cosmic order (the laws of physics), ground-of-being, and ultimately the reason why there is something rather than nothing, I have to admit that I don't have a clue what the answer to those questions might be, or even whether expecting an answer makes sense. (There may be problems of circularity when we seek an explanation for everything.) So I might be more of a 4 when it comes to natural theology.

    I guess that I think of myself as an agnostic in Thomas Huxley's original sense.
     
    #33 Yazata, Jan 8, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
  14. Milton Platt

    Milton Platt Well-Known Member
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    It’s hard for me to place myself precisely on a scale. I am certainly very near the point at which I believe there are no gods. So very near the end of the scale towards believing no gods exist.

    Certainly, I do,not believe any of the gods thus far proposed to me exist, as there is ample convincing evidence against them.
    I do not state that there are no gods with absolute certainty, but absolutes for the most part do not exist with regard to anything we wish to ponder. But I see the probability as vanishingly small.
     
  15. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    Accuracy is a good thing. And so is refusing to perpetuate the fairly serious mistake of conflating Abrahamic Monotheism with Theism proper, let alone with "the basis of religion".
     
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  16. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    You know, what you are saying sounds troubling similar to claims that some people are not sophisticated enough to be taught that maybe there is no God in the sky after all.
     
  17. Windwalker

    Windwalker Integralist
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    Richard Dawkins weighing in on the subject of God, is like Donald Trump being viewed as an expert on Climate Change.
     
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  18. osgart

    osgart Nothing my eye, Something for sure

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    I know there are no Gods. Based on what is seen in nature i sure am glad none exist too. Im a 7 on it.

    But a freaky, wild intelligent dimension of existence that i can believe.

    Dawkins knows that much trouble in society comes from abrahamic religions. So he only concerns himself with the only religions that play a major influence on society.

    Its quite obvious his focus is solely on abrahamic gods. I think that is deliberate.
     
  19. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    We're in substantial agreement here. Now, if you could only see as I do on the much more important issue of my being the most handsome of all men.
     
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  20. Hubert Farnsworth

    Hubert Farnsworth Well-Known Member

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    How do you know there are no gods?
     
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