Dawkins spectrum of probabilities

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fintanruth
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Post by fintanruth » Sat Feb 23, 2008 9:18 pm

There seems to be a strong preference for category 7.

So what about Dawkins when he says he is a category 6, and he would be surprised to meet many people in category 7.

Atheism: - Belief that there is no God.

Logic dictates there is or there isn’t a God. So why would Dawkins be surprised with so many 7’s?

Fintan

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CatHerder
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Post by CatHerder » Sat Feb 23, 2008 9:47 pm

fintanruth wrote: Seamus are you sure you didn't mean category "d" for a little what's that other word I can't think of it now?
You hit the nail on the head Fintan, sorry about that. :oops:
adamd164
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Post by adamd164 » Sat Feb 23, 2008 10:24 pm

fintanruth wrote:There seems to be a strong preference for category 7.

So what about Dawkins when he says he is a category 6, and he would be surprised to meet many people in category 7.

Atheism: - Belief that there is no God.

Logic dictates there is or there isn’t a God. So why would Dawkins be surprised with so many 7’s?

Fintan

www.therealmoses.com
As I said, I'm a 7 in practice, but, in a technical sense, I cannot claim to be a true 7. You cannot possibly be, because it means that you have proof that there is no god. Without proof, there are no absolute certainties. Only the religious would say otherwise. This is why Dawkins calls himself a 6.
fintanruth
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Post by fintanruth » Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:50 am

Hi adamd164

All words have meaning and if you want to speculate by saying something higher than nature might have caused the big bang twelve billion years ago that’s OK.

But you can't use the word God because the word God refers to Yahweh the God of Moses.

The God Yahweh according to the Bible created man six thousand years ago and this planet forty two thousand years ago.

Einstein’s theory of relativity places the big bang twelve billion years ago.

To understand God you must study the bible.

You use the word god which has a completely different meaning. which refers to all the gods.

Why do Atheists not understand the difference, there is God and there are gods, why have atheists such a problem with this?

Fintan

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Post by ravenflag » Sun Feb 24, 2008 9:14 am

Just because we cannot disprove a myth does not mean it could be true.
Nobody here [i hope not anyway] belives that there is a possiblity of a tooth fairy,santa claus or a easter bunny so why give religion the privilege?

I am certain there is no tooth fairy so i dont belive it.
I am certain there is no santa so i dont belive him.

Now im off to feed my pink unicorn. :)
By all means lets be open minded,but not so open minded that our brains fall out.
Richard Dawkins
adamd164
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Post by adamd164 » Sun Feb 24, 2008 11:50 am

fintanruth wrote:Hi adamd164

All words have meaning and if you want to speculate by saying something higher than nature might have caused the big bang twelve billion years ago that’s OK.

But you can't use the word God because the word God refers to Yahweh the God of Moses.

The God Yahweh according to the Bible created man six thousand years ago and this planet forty two thousand years ago.

Einstein’s theory of relativity places the big bang twelve billion years ago.

To understand God you must study the bible.

You use the word god which has a completely different meaning. which refers to all the gods.

Why do Atheists not understand the difference, there is God and there are gods, why have atheists such a problem with this?

Fintan

www.therealmoses.com
Well I can assure you Fintan, I'm not referring to any particular 'god' as referred to in any particular holy book. I am referring to a "god-like" supernatural entity per se; one which is unfalsifiable, for obvious reasons. It is the same sense in which Dawkins uses the term 'god', and I think it is an acceptable one.

Moreover, I resent your attempts to hijack the term and dictate its useage.

Oxford English Dictionary:
God

• noun 1 (in Christianity and other monotheistic religions) the creator and supreme ruler of the universe. 2 (god) a superhuman being or spirit worshipped as having power over nature and human fortunes. 3 (god) a greatly admired or influential person. 4 (the gods) informal the gallery in a theatre.
- that certainly doesn't suggest that the meaning of the word is singular at all. Maybe you could explain to me why it is that you have greater authority on linguistic matters.
Last edited by adamd164 on Sun Feb 24, 2008 11:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
adamd164
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Post by adamd164 » Sun Feb 24, 2008 11:52 am

ravenflag wrote:Just because we cannot disprove a myth does not mean it could be true.
Nobody here belives that there is a possiblity of a tooth fairy,santa claus or a easter bunny so why give religion the privilege?

I am certain there is no tooth fairy so i dont belive it.
I am certain there is no santa so i dont belive him.

Now im off to feed my pink unicorn. :)


Well scientifically, if an entity or phenomenon is unfalsifiable, then you cannot be certain of its non-existence. I stand over what I said, to claim so would be to place you in the same camp as the religious. Belief without evidence is something which I vigorously oppose. That is precisely why Dawkins does not label himself a 7, and it is the only logical conclusion.

I labelled myself a 6.95, and would do the same with the tooth fairy, santa, and the pink unicorn. I am not a man of faith like some around here seem to be.
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Post by marklen » Sun Feb 24, 2008 12:53 pm

adamd164 wrote:I labelled myself a 6.95, and would do the same with the tooth fairy, santa, and the pink unicorn.
I have to go with Adam on this one. And I think this is also what Dawkin's was getting at. "Know" is too strong a word when used in that sense. I don't think it is scientific or rational to dictate a final position on anything, no matter how ludicrous. Also, it shifts the burden of proof onto the atheist, a favourite tactic of the theists, who end up branding atheism as simply another belief.

Actually I don't think this really matters that much, we're arguing about semantics at this point. When it comes to knowing something, you can get as far as cogito ergo sum on pure logic alone and then you have to start making compromises.

So I may not be 7, but I am still 100% an atheist. Simple lack of belief is sufficient to be an atheist, conviction is not required. I also count a lot of people as atheist who may not count themselves as such.
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Post by CitizenPaine » Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:20 pm

marklen wrote: ... it shifts the burden of proof onto the atheist, a favourite tactic of the theists, who end up branding atheism as simply another belief.
This is the aspect of the matter that sways me. I find it so frustrating to have to be on the defensive against those who would claim that what I argue for is nothing more than another form of belief. Dawkins has the same problem - he's been accused of fundamentalism in his denunciation of religion. His answer is that he is not a fundy but he is enthusiastic about his position.

For this reason and to avoid being an absolutist I would have to label myself a 6.

CitizenPaine
The moving finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.

From the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam (FitzGerald version)
fintanruth
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Post by fintanruth » Sun Feb 24, 2008 10:24 pm

Collins dictionary

God:- (Theo) the sole Supreme Being, eternal, spiritual, and transcendent, who is the Creator and ruler of all and is infinite in all attributes; the object of worship in monotheistic religions.

god :-a supernatural being, who is worshipped as the controller of some part of the universe or some aspect of life in the world or is the personification of some force

Two seperate words.

Yahweh :- Old Testament a vocalization of the Tetragrammaton, used esp. by Christian theologians
from Hebrew, from YHVH, with conjectural vowels; perhaps related to hawah to be; see also Jehovah

Jehovah :- the personal name of God, revealed to Moses on Mount Horeb (Exodus 3)

I believe the word God is always used out of context. When using the word God we need to specify which of the gods we refer to.

I don’t think it was a good idea for Dawkins to draw up this spectrum of probabilities 1 to 7. The term God means different things to different people.

It is my belief you are either an Atheist or not.

Fintan

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