Excellent thread, What if god existed as the conscience that flowed across all real material that makes up the some of the infinite reality, much like the electrical impulses that storm across the dendrites in our brain that give us the illusory sense of self. 1) would that conscience see us or be aware of us? 2) could we be aware of its existence? This being, that illusive god outside our space and time, which some scientists allude to so as to shuffle out of the debate, I think could not be aware unless life was just a process of thought. After all our conscience exists outside our physical being like winds blowing across wheat-fields our minds react to the thoughts more than like wheat act to control the wind. Yet in this interplay we add to and process knowledge, or are processed by knowledge unfolding to its logical conclusion. This deity is just another projection.
You don't feel that there are no gods, you think it.
And your unicorn in the backyard scenario is an invalid conter-factual. Impossible things cannot manifest. I do not need to leave any doubt, just in case one walks by. It can't.
There can be no evidence of something that is itself impossible. It being impossible is enough to conclude with certainty that it does not exist.
Gnosticism doesn't preclude evidence. Evidence of reality and epistemology precedes proper gnosticism.
The thing that puzzles me, you and I and a whole lot of other people think there is no god because we do not have adequate evidence to convince us otherwise.
What about the bright, intelligent, mature, scholarly, adult, scientists who believe god exists?
According to a study conducted in 1998, seven % of "Our chosen group of "greater" scientists were members of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS)." What is it about the seven % who do believe? How does one account for those?
This was not a random study; I don't have a more up to date one.
Dr Francis Collins (Director of the National Human Genome Research Institute) gave this explanation of why and how he became a "believer". He is not alone. Why? What is it that leads a scientific mind to his conclusion? Is he a "Whacko"?
I think god does not exist because I do not have evidence that convinces me otherwise. Reasonable, well-trained scientific people think god does exist, even though a very small number of them do. My reason for pushing back against religion is because of the aggressive political stance taken by those who believe in creation and armageddon and want to impose those on our culture and want to put laws into place based on religious beliefs, not on what is reasonable, affirmative, healthy, life-affirming, and responsible.
It is not the absence of evidence that makes me an atheist. It is my awareness of the fact that the idea a frankly absurd. Intelligence or skill in one area does not mean intelligence or skill in all areas. It does not matter what other people think the world is like, whether or not they are 'scientists'. We have varying degrees of genetic susceptibility to being overwhelmed by our emotions that getting in the way of an objective world view. I don't find it surprising at all that many people good at science, don't understand the full implications of the axioms they use to do science.
It appears to me that Francis Collins believes because he wants to believe. He had at least one experience that seemed mystical to him, but he fails to realize that our marvelous brain will conjure-up strong emotions, even visions, if we want them strongly enough.
Exactly. Idaho Spud. And furthermore, he testifies very clearly that he does not agree with creationism and their errors of logic, but he does have a sense of the spiritual.
Is it possible that he and others feel a sense of wonder? I feel that all the time, i.e. My goodness, this water is precious and I am not the one responsible for creating it, only to manage it wisely; the sky full of stars enchant me and I had nothing to do with making them even as I enjoy them; or my great-grandchildren are very special even as my step-great-grandchildren are; or the baby girl I watched being born in China is a marvel to behold, even as I wept knowing she had few options in this world.
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?"
MCT, yes, it is enough to see that a garden is beautiful.
We live in a culture that embraces a god belief based on the ignorant assertion of our forbearers of power and wisdom to proclaim as known the unknown decrying the unknown to be god. God is nothing and represents the something unknown to the wisdom of vanity denying our own ignorance with arrogance. God and the question of god exists in and of this paradigm alone. Even as Atheist we are trapped by believers into this mindset. Leave being an atheist, step outside the box into a world where god never was an imaginary answer nor a something such as a social bonding mechanism confused for a driving power of god's spirit. step out and away into nature as it evolved into the complex from the simple from powers such as exploding stars the cooled into planets and stars and later life forms that emerged because the it simply could as it could not in other places and did not in other ways. step into that world searching for the reason life caught a foothold and life as people now looks back upon itself. we as natures entity building a body of information that informs anew, each generation without reverence to the infallible or outdated wisdoms of the past assessments, grow that human conscience to an understanding of self and nature, such that we traverse the black-hole in the center of our earth through wormholes out into other galaxies and back through particle data streaming. Now that we are outside that paradigm of old into what is natural, what is possible, and what becomes real, we have arrived to a new paradigm that is 100 percent free of god. It is only the precedent of religion preceding science much like ignorance precedes knowledge or bad habits learned first rear their ugly heads, that we are not 100 percent sure those old myths may have some place in life.
Jon T, it isn't easy to parse your sentences, but a black hole at the center of the Earth would doom us all in exceedingly short order. It would be disastrously evident in a matter of perhaps hours, were one ever to appear at the Earth's core. I don't dispute your other conclusions (if I understand them correctly), but you can't be serious about this idea.
My point is that god is an imagination of old ideas that we debate endlessly because we imagined it to be true first, and ignorance as does knowledge shapes belief if sprinkled with imagination. There are many things we are 100 percent sure do not exist like the imaginary infinitesimally small black hole that pulls matter into it at the center of the earth.