My conversations with atheists you are reading now have developed from Richard Dawkins’ statement on Twitter (April 25, 2015) to which I responded. Someone then reacted to my response. This reaction gave birth to my other responses. I posted this short conversation on my Facebook (April 25, 2015), eventually resulting in extended comments on my Facebook from my Western FB friends to which I replied seriously. Enjoy all the following conversations.
Richard Dawkins (on Twitter): Of course people have a right to hold whatever beliefs they want. Ridiculing those beliefs doesn’t deny that right.
My response: @RichardDawkins Yes. People ridiculing others’ beliefs are people ridiculing their own dignity.
Mr. A: Are you not ridiculing Dawkins’s position? It seems more precise to say that PEOPLE should never be rejected, but bad IDEAS should always be rejected. If you disagree with me on this, then you do so because you reject what I say as a bad idea. Not all ideas are equal (disagreeing with that statement would be self-refuting as it would be claiming that this claim is not as valid as the claim that “all ideas are equal”).
Chapter 10 [The God Part Of The Brain]
The fact, however, that we do not possess the physical capacity to fly, for instance, means that no drug can ever enhance or suppress our nonexistent powers of flight. Again, a drug can only affect us as much as we possess some physiological mechanism that might be receptive to a drug’s particular chemistry.
The fact, for instance, that novocaine has the universal effect of desensitizing one to pain means that we must possess pain receptors that are capable of being suppressed. In the same way, the fact that psychedelic drugs have a cross-cultural tendency to stimulate experiences we define as being either spiritual, religious, mystical, or transcendental means we must possess some physiological mechanism whose function is to generate this particular type of conscious experience. If we didn't possess such a physical mechanism, there’s no way these drugs could possibly stimulate such experiences in us. In essence, the fact that there exists a certain class of drugs—molecular combinations—that can evoke a spiritual experience supports the notion that spiritual consciousness must be physiological in nature. Herein lies the basis for an ethnobotanical argument against the existence of either a spiritual reality or a soul.
Furthermore, I think you know too that in December 2004 a group of Swedish researchers led by the psychologist Pehr Granqvist at Uppsala University in Sweden had attempted to replicate Persinger’s experiments under double-blind conditions. In fact, they were not able to reproduce the effect claimed by Persinger himself. They concluded that the presence or absence of the magnetic field had no relationship with any religious or spiritual experience reported by the participants, but was predicted totally by their suggestibility and personality traits. This study was published in 2005 in Neuroscience Letters 379 (1): 1-6. Consequently, religious experiences could be rooted not in the neurons of the human brains themselves, but in something outside the neural processes in the brain, more precisely, in the ecology and life environments in which people grow and develop physically and mentally. Religious experiences are not something given automatically by the human brains, are not hard-wired to the natural workings of neurons, but conditioned by many social and psychological variables existing in the world.
Mr. E: My claim is that everyone is born believing in the supernatural. That death anxiety is the root of the beliefs. As we became consciously aware of ourselves and our surroundings, life. We also became aware of death, and how fragile life can be. So in order for our brains to develop as consciously aware, it also developed an area in the temporal lobes, and other areas, that give everyone born (unless they have a brain defect) a sense of a spirit/soul, a god, part of whole, an afterlife, a continuation somehow....and so on. These areas in the brain responsible for these beliefs is key to our survival as a species.
In contrast, IBM’s new chip architecture resembles that of a living brain. The chip is composed of computing cores that each contain 256 input lines, or “axons” (the cablelike part of a nerve cell that transmits electrical signals) and 256 output lines, or “neurons”. Much like in a real brain, the artificial neurons only send signals, or spikes, when electrical charges reach a certain threshold.But if these devices can function more like a human brain, they may eventually understand their environments better, he said. For example, instead of moving a camera image onto a computer to process it, “the [camera] sensor becomes the computer,” he said.IBM created the chip as part of DARPA’s SyNAPSE program (short for Systems of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable Electronics). The goal of this initiative is to build a computer that resembles the form and function of the mammalian brain, with intelligence similar to a cat or mouse.
Here are the 2 links to the study of multiverse: Rose Taylor, “Is our universe merely one of billions? Evidence of the existence of ‘multiverse’ revealed for the first time by cosmic map”, MailOnline, 19 May 2013, at http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2326869/Is-universe-merely-billions-Evidence-existence-multiverse-revealed-time-cosmic-map.html; and Jonathan Leake, “Cosmic cold spots hint at other universes”, The Australian News, 19 May 2013, at http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2326869/Is-universe-merely-billions-Evidence-existence-multiverse-revealed-time-cosmic-map.html.
“A meme should be regarded as a unit of information residing in a brain. It has a definite structure, realized in whatever physical medium the brain uses for storing information. If the brain stores information as a pattern of synaptic connections, a meme should in principle be visible under a miscroscope as a definite pattern of synaptic structure. If the brain stores information in ‘distributed’ form, the meme would not be localizable on a microscopic slide, but I would want to regard it as physically residing in the brain.”With the currently impressive progress in the neuro-imaging technology, empirical studies of the existence of a meme in the human brains now can be conducted, for instance, by Adam McNamara, especially in order to discover its neural bases. Read his article for yourselves; here it is: Adam McNamara, “Can we measure memes?”, Frontier in Evolutionary Science 3 (25 May 2011), doi: 10.3389/fnevo.2011.00001, pada http://journal.frontiersin.org/Journal/10.3389/fnevo.2011.00001/full.
And, let me now emphasize that I don’t say or refer to any magic. I just state that virtual world exists, not only for the Internet memes and the computerized data, but also for everything our mind processes in our human brains behaving like/as computers. Do you know Arthur C. Clarke, the writer of several science fictions? Arthur states, as frequently quoted by the pope Richard Dawkins with acceptance, that “any sufficiently advanced technology cannot be distinguished from magic”. Understood? So, ask your master where the location of the Internet virtual world is and how big it is. Can he locate it and measure it? I hope he can.
The vast majority of the world’s population are believers. Why are you so concerned with what a small percent doesn’t believe? I would even go as far to say that you seem obsessed with atheist. To the point of devoting hours and hours of your life to atheist. Not only that but out of the roughly 7 billion people in the world only around 5 million are active scientists. But such a small group sure as everyone’s panties in a bunch. Lol.
The Quantum Physics Fallacy
Description: Using quantum physics in an attempt to support your claim, when in no way is your claim related to quantum physics. One can also use the weirdness of the principles of quantum physics to cast doubt on the well-established laws of the macro world.
Quantum physics supports the idea that X is Y.
Therefore, X is Y.
(although quantum physics supports no such thing)
Mr. F: I think you overestimate the value and threat of high intelligence. Why hasn’t Marilyn vos Savant taken over the world? Her tested IQ is over twice that of the average human, but she’s content to be an occasional magazine columnist. She’s smarter than Einstein― why hasn’t she superseded Einstein?
A computer may be connected to the internet, but it doesn’t follow that an intelligence running on that computer would “know” the entire internet. Architectural considerations may force a distinction between computer data and the intelligence’s actual knowledge. My individual neurons are capable of great feats of computation, but I have no ability to exploit that power when I’m trying to calculate a tip.
Fears that an AI would be “uncontrollable” strike me as on the same order as worrying your child will grow up to be Hitler. Sure, it’s a possibility―but not even a remote likelihood, and the answer is not to strangle all the infants in their cribs.
Ioanes Rakhmat: I am speaking not about the human fear directed to the Super Computers that have Super-AIs. I am delighted if we had it now. I told you about it as an example of the virtual world trespassed by the Super-AI. Your opinion about this virtual world is outdated. That is my point. Thanks for your response, anyway.
Mr. E: Our own universe is not infinite, it is finite. So going by what we know so far, there is no reason to suspect that if there are other universes that they should have different laws of physics. Maybe they do, but we have no way of knowing since they have not been discovered yet. It’s possible that they do exist, but we have not found the definitive proof yet, and we may never find it. A mistake some people make is saying energy cannot be created or destroyed. That deals with the laws of thermal dynamics but in a controlled vacuum. It’s not a reality in the known universe. In reality all energy/matter dissipates over time. Nothing last forever, not even the universe.
I think you didn’t know about the recent study of the multiverse, given your comments above. That’s why I had to give you the two links connecting you to the study. Be humble. I made, so far, no explicit references to quantum mechanics. It is not Feynman, but Niels Bohr who first stated that none knows the quantum mechanics due to its weirdness. Sorry, I correct you.
But Deepak is right when he reminds atheists that in our universe there is an entity we call INFINITY. From a simple mathematical calculation, that is, one divided by zero, we get infinity. It is weird indeed that you as atheist are unaware of this simple mathematical operation! I think, you need an explanation or a demonstration that one divided by zero results in infinity. Here it is:
1:0,001 = 1000
Answer me, then:
1:0.0000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000......... ad infinitum ......1=? The result is infinity. No doubt about it!
Because 0 is much smaller than 0,00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000.... ad infinitum....1,
then, 1:0 = absolute infinity.
I know, many people immediately will respond that 1:0 is not infinity, though I just demonstrated that it is, but “undefined”. OK, if you wish to say such, at the cost of denying blindly what I have just shown. But answer me, what is the “undefined”? Do the math calculation to show me how you get the “undefined”, please. Let me tell you. Some Eastern religions consider God as the “undefined”, an entity far surpassing any human knowledge and understanding of everything in the universe, in such a way that this entity is always beyond any human and scientific understandings of all realities in the universe. But, put simply, the “undefined” is anything that cannot be defined, anything that cannot be limited, imprisoned, and confined in any limited categories and frames of mind, anything that has no definition. In other words, the “undefined” is something infinite, or, put in the noun, is infinity. Clear?
Mr. E: I check these two sites daily: http://www.sciencedaily.com/search/?keyword=multiverse#gsc.tab=0&gsc.q=multiverse&gsc.page=1; and http://phys.org/search/?search=multiverse.
“No, this skeptic is fully open to the possibility of a multiverse and even 26 dimensions. But since they haven’t been proven yet, I am not claiming the unknown is actually known. If I were to do that then that would be very closed minded of me to insist that an unknown is already known. It would be an end to honest inquiry.”
Mr. E: Hi, string theory has been proved to be wrong. Read this writing of Troy Pearce; here is the link http://www.examiner.com/article/string-theory-disproved-what-happens-next. Sure, according to my judgment, the belief in string theory is a form of blind faith, a religion, as has been stated too by William Reville here http://www.irishtimes.com/news/science/belief-in-the-multiverse-a-form-of-blind-faith-1.2153271. Furthermore, the LHC disproved string theory. You are outdated. But for sure it will linger on with some, because for them, and you, it has become a religion.
Ioanes Rakhmat: Thanks Mr. E. I have read the two articles whose links you have given me. But, you unfortunately failed to notice the following statement of Troy Pearce: “Allow me to make myself completely understood. I am not stating that string theory is wrong, I have no proof that it is wrong. What I do have is the common sense to realize that if you base all work in physics and cosmology on a theory that has provided no proof in its own favor you are more than likely to find yourself in a fast sinking ship.” Pearce clearly has not disproved string theory yet! So far as I know, William Reville is not a physicist, but a biochemist at UCC.
Here I copy-paste again my statement in my conversations above:
String theory as the best candidate of the theory of everything works beyond quantum mechanics. It combines Einstein’s general relativity with quantum physics, but it also accounts for dark matter, dark energy, black holes, four natural forces (so far as we now know; that is, electromagnetic force, weak and strong nuclear forces, and gravity), extra-dimensions, the multiverse, Higgs boson, matter, energy, to say the least. It seems you don’t know the scope of string theory.I therefore don’t believe that string theory will die. Its horizon is so wide and all-inclusive. Perhaps you are dreaming in the spring, Mr. E, if you predict it will die out.
The LHC’s prime target, Mr. E, is to simulate the big bang of our universe, not to check out the multiverse, let alone to simulate the births of infinite universes beyond our own, or to reach the farthest and the deepest dimension of extra-dimensions. Don’t forget, the LHC has been constructed within the framework of the Standard Model which currently has been viewed a bit outdated. It is too early and too hasty to claim the demise of string theory, Mr. E.
Mr. E: Yes, refuse to get up to date and continue with your string theory RELIGION. I’m going to block you, because you are a waste of time, and I don’t like people putting my name in their blogs without my permission. I’m going to look into what actions I can take to force you to remove them.
Ioanes Rakhmat: In the end of April 2015, Stephen Hawking said, “One day there may well be proof of multiple universes. It would not be beyond the realms of possibility that somewhere outside of our own universe lies another different universe” (here is the link http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/04/28/stephen-hawking-humanity-1000-years_n_7160870.html). If string theory is a religion, then so many famous physicists have become religious believers, Mr. E. Do you think the end of the world will soon happen? But, yes, in the world of science a certain belief works too, especially in the beginning of new researches, but this belief later or immediately should be tested, namely, be verified or be falsified, something different from religious beliefs. Uupps, do you want to block me? Why? You need not block me, Mr. E. I will do it to you. It is your will, not mine.
Must read too! My conversations with atheists (part 1)