The changing of reality is the very essence of scientific investigation. Additionally, these changes are rarely 180s, they're usually tweaks to previous understandings of reality. A recent example of interest... Radio-carbon dating of certain of the oldest primitive cave paintings in Spain were previously thought to be 30,ooo years old, making it unlikely that they were drawn by Neanderthals, since they'd pretty much gone extinct by this time. However, RCD is still a changing science, and the newest attempt to date these little red circles actually revealed that they're 40,ooo years old, opening the door for them to be Neanderthal markings. For many years, it was thought that Neanderthals were not sufficiently evolved for this. That was the proper assumption, given the lack of evidence. This new evidence is by no means final, but it opens the door to a change in our understanding of Neanderthals.
To make an ontological statement, yes, I perceive all reality through the sciences, biology, chemistry, and physics, that is my education... which derived from my personal propensity to science, which probably derived from my lifelong interest in these, which likely was facilitated by my never being religious or superstitious, over many many years, and my work.
However, I would never go so far as to using science to establish "right and wrong", as Hitchins and Harris did. There are aspects of our daily experience which can not be decided by science.
The way you interpret scientific facts goes beyond what the scientific method sets out to prove, which is why you should be prepared to defend this perspective if someone challenged it in the future, as it will be very hard to do. However I'm not going to get into it now. There are some 'Emergentists' and secular humanists that are higher on the priorities list (if such a thing exists). For the sake of everyone's sanity, it may be better that I just crawl back under my AtheistNexus shell and return to --oh, I don't know-- real life, perhaps...
I've never had any of my profs complain of this or correct me about it, I was an easy A student, especially on thesis style evaluations. So I will look forward to your starting that discussion to see where you're coming from. Enjoy your real-life evening, I shall do the same :)
I have come to my senses. You people are all nuts. It will be a purpose driven life from here on in for this camper. No more wasted time thinking; instead, order, values, stages and sacraments all leading to an eternity of perfection in god's domain. A bit more steamy where you will be going!
I wonder if they keep up with the newest technology. Without blue ray and high def why bother? The almighty provides, I suppose. And after a few centuries no more worrying about differences in age between prospective mates. Oh but the music. Isn't there an eternal harpsichord playing? I mean I can handle five minutes of country, fifteen of klezmer, forty five of zydeco and maybe two hours of good jazz and classical. But a harpsichord that wont shut off. There better be earplugs or a sound proof room. A minor sacrifice if you ask me compared to an eternity in you know where.
Anyways enjoy your selves while you can, suckers.
I've come to look at it as every choice we make adds up to a different sum and end result. Every encounter, every lesson learned, every scientific discovery, every book we read, every meal, etc. In the end our collective purpose is just to make every possible combination of events transition from being a possibility to an actuality, and existence provides all the variables to be chosen (or not) for our equations.
How else can you explain Oreo Cookies being dunked in milk being so delicious?
I like that viewpoint A. FitzGerald - very nice.
Far more purpose than a Theist's life will ever have.
You have a free will and can make your purpose whatever you want it to be and having this purpose in itself will give your life meaning.
Even if this purpose is to simply upset religious folks and destroy their religion in order to make the world a better place.
Devout theists all only have the exact same ultimate aim and purpose, to be mindless sycophantic servants to their divine usurper.
Thus theists really don't have any individual purpose, except to be brown nosed suckers.
Your life, purpose and it's meaning have much more significance than theirs.
Aye M8! :-D-
Upsetting theists and demoralizing them and destroying their arrogant self-image seems to be the only thing I'm doing well at the moment. Guess I'd better concentrate more on my actual career.
Though demoralizing theists is fun!
Yes Steph: There is ultimately no purpose in being a sheep, a mindless servant of god. That's not a worthwhile purpose, it has no real meaning and it cannot even really be called A LIFE!
Theists essentially don't have a life of their own.