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The Big Bang: Why is it still being taught?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by classical_hero, Mar 2, 2014.

  1. Manfred Belheim

    Manfred Belheim Moaner Lisa

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    Happiness =/= morality

    Not only is happines much, much easier to objectively define, it's also something that people are much less likely lie or delude themselves about.
     
  2. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    It's just an example that explains how I arrived at my conclusion using much simpler terms.

    I really don't see what's so controversial about what I'm saying:

    1. A bunch of people say that God is their only source of morality
    2. If you take God away...
    3. Some people will be less moral

    It doesn't really matter anyway, it was just an off comment that I'm being asked to re-clarify multiple times now. It's fine that people disagree, but none of the objections have really touched on the very basic principles that I use in my argument, so I'm reclarifying my position using a simple example.

    But what does it matter either way?
     
  3. Ziggy Stardust

    Ziggy Stardust New Englander

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    It kills time.
     
  4. useless

    useless Social Justice Rogue

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    Alternative thread title: "Creationism: Why is it still being taught?"
     
  5. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Alternative alternative title: "Creationism: Wait, it's still being taught?"
     
  6. peter grimes

    peter grimes ...

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    Question for science peeps :

    What's a "fudge factor"?

    I've never seen this term in science writing, so it must only be used in the more rigorous academic-level studies that I rarely read.

    Any thoughts?
     
  7. Birdjaguar

    Birdjaguar Hanafubuki Retired Moderator Supporter

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    It is when the PI calls for a break in the ongoing research routine and everyone gathers in the break room for a chocolate break. Then, with renewed energy and enthusiasm they go back to work.
     
  8. Perfection

    Perfection The Great Head.

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    Fudge makes my tummy hurt
     
  9. Manfred Belheim

    Manfred Belheim Moaner Lisa

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    There's nothing controversial about your three step plan there, but it doesn't seem to fit what you actually originally said (from what I recall at any rate). But if it doesn't matter then never mind.
     
  10. Berzerker

    Berzerker Deity

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    That assumes their God was moral, but people will join other non-believers in replacing God. Even religious fanatics pick and choose from God's morality.
     
  11. Trev

    Trev Prince

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    The pictures and data provided by spacecraft on Mercury explorations have surprised scientists.
    A small planet like Mercury was predicted not to have a magnetic field prior to the first spacecraft visit in 1975 by scientists as calculations based on physics theory had predicted its demise several billion years earlier. However the 1975 visit detected a significant magnetic field. Later visits by spacecraft in 2008 and 2011 showed a rapid decline in the strength of the magnetic field of 7.8% in 36 years. A decline of this magnitude would be expected for a small planet 6000 years old which was created with a strong magnetic field, but definitely not for a planet 4 billion years old which should have long ago reached a stable state with only very slow changes.
    Mercury is pockmarked with hollows, many blueish in colour . They are caused by the decay and vaporization of volatile materials in rock thrown out by meteorites on impact. A 4 billion year old planet very close to the sun and buffeted by extreme solar winds and radiation should long ago have exhausted its supply of volatile elements. The presence of these volatile substances provide strong evidence of a very young planet as does the decaying magnetic field.
     
  12. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    Ah ha ha ha, they're drive-bys!

    I find it weird it was in true academic writing. Normally a fudge factor is there for a variable that we know is there but currently cannot measure. So, instead, a number is added in what is hoped to be the right magnitude, and then is calculated as a range.

    So, for example, if you wanted to figure out the packing density of people, you'd first figure out the packing density of spheres with a diameter of 5'7", and then ballpark that people are 1/3 or so the volume of spheres. Then you'd calculate assuming they were 1/5 the volume of a sphere all the way to 1/2 the volume of a sphere and then give a range of answers. Or, more clearly, the answer as a range.
     
  13. Crezth

    Crezth 話說天下大勢分久必合合久必分

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    Because just saying you're moral doesn't mean you are moral. It doesn't tell us anything. You're missing a crucial step or twenty. It's just sheer logical vapor what you're pushing here.
     
  14. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    He is, but you're missing an obvious step to just auto-include and tell him you've done it.

    There are things that are moral and immoral by any secular accounting. Those religious people say they'd reduce their (secularly approved) moral behaviour and increase their (deemed) immoral behaviour if they lost their faith. After that, it's just a question of whether you believe them.

    Their behaviour if they 'lost' their faith is going to be different than if they 'never had their faith' in the first place. They can only self-report on their losing of the faith. And, on that front, self-report is not a bad estimation - there will be (at least) a correlation. To judge people's morality sans faith would require an actual scientific study with people deliberately (and randomly) slotted into being given a faith or not.

    What's missing is an allowance that some (much?) of modern day religious moral teachings overlap (Venn Diagram style) with secular morality.
     
  15. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    It's definitely a bit more complicated than my simple example suggests, but it's the behind the scene mechanics I wanted to point out, not all the intricacies of the phenomenon.
     
  16. Crezth

    Crezth 話說天下大勢分久必合合久必分

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    This is simply not what was claimed. warpus said people identify religion as their source of morality, not that they specifically claim that without religion they'd become immoral. They are separate claims, indeed, separate entire trains of thought, and should be regarded as such. For instance, if you suppose that the only reason some doesn't murder people is because god told him not to, that's not to suggest that he'd suddenly be OK with that sort of behavior if it was proven to him, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that god didn't exist after all, even if that was what convinced him in the first place. It's part of his morality now. I could be wrong on this, but it hasn't been demonstratively proven in either direction, hence why I take umbrage at warpus' unsubstantiated claims.

    What you're hemming and hawwing about "deemed" moral/immorality is also, I think, somewhat besides the point. The entire mental exercise is whether or not people would govern themselves with moral precepts sans religion. I don't think we have to draw a line in the sand between so-called secular and religious moral teachings at all. warpus' claim amounts to the insinuation that people would not govern themselves with moral precepts without religion OR if they had religion, and then lost it, more often than not would stop governing themselves with moral precepts without religion, such that the "total morality" (???) would drop. Nowhere do we need to bring "Christianity vs. Secularism" into this, although I'll happily play that game if it's asked of me.

    I understand the logic of what you're pushing but it's still undemonstrated. There will be (at least) a correlation, you say - well, maybe, but prove it, or explain why it must be so.

    For my own part, let me hazard this point: since becoming more secular, western society hasn't apparently gotten much less moral. And I don't mean in terms of Absolute Morals which we can or should subscribe to, but in the sense that even our secular western society governs itself according to some shared moral precepts, despite the fact that we lack the same faith of our intellectual forebears. For what that's worth, anyway.

    It could be that we have replaced the faith with a different kind of faith. Maybe. I'm not arguing theology. I'm just arguing against the idea that religion makes us better as people. It is a demeaning, misanthropic suggestion at its core.
     
  17. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    No, I just pointed out that a lot of people identify God as their only source for morality. This part's a fact.

    Then I wondered what would happen if that source were removed. In the case of individuals it's hard to predict, if not impossible, but you can analyze the situation anyway. This part's analysis.

    What would happen if your only perceived source of X were removed? How would that affect X and your sense of X? My guess is that if you think you have only one source of X and that source is removed.. your X is more likely to diminish than to actually increase or stay the same. Because.. well.. because you claim that it is your only source of the thing. That makes sense to me.

    Your disagreement with what I'm saying seems to hinge on the actual definition of morality and what it means to be moral and what it means to be imoral, which I don't really care about here. It doesn't matter.
     
  18. Ziggy Stardust

    Ziggy Stardust New Englander

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    I see discussion is a little too hazardous for the Trevster.

    Why then post at all? What's the use?
     
  19. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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  20. Formaldehyde

    Formaldehyde Both Fair And Balanced

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    Those who claim that atheists and agnostics have no morals are typically stating that they perceive their own religion-inspired morals to be quite different from ours.

    And in many regards they are quite correct. Many atheists and agnostics find the notion of a vengeful and hateful god who selects one group over all others to be utterly nonsensical. That he would incessantly punish people like Job to "test" them. That he would be so incensed by homosexual acts that he would unleash a category 5 hurricane on New Orleans. These are not morals shared by many atheists and agnostics. They don't even seem to be believed by many mainstream Christians anymore, and the last one is rejected completely by them.

    But what those who claim this don't seem to understand is that they would likely not change appreciably if they suddenly renounced their own religion. They would quickly find secular reasons to rationalize their personal ethics, just as they now find secular reasons to rationalize their personal opinions when they know they can't use religious ones.
     

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