Strolling with a skeptical biochemist
Very nice this is the kind of advertising the CFI should be producing. Makes me proud to be a member. Thanks for posting it Larry.
It's simple and short. I like it.
Nice, gentle, and to the point. I like that.Be better if they said "people" instead of "Americans", though.
Lone Primate says'Be better if they said "people" instead of "Americans", though.'The advertisements and billboards say, “You don’t need God-to hope, to care, to love, to live.”See "Press Release": top right @http://livingwithoutreligion.org/I have written to the Center for Inquiry to clarify whether the video is part of the campaign itself or if it was created to advertise the campaign.
A slick ad cannot trump the great arbiter, death. What happens when earthly hope, care, love, and physical life end? Without God, who can trump death?
@Denny The idea is to convince god's earthly hoard stop taking matters into their own hands.
Denny:An appeal to the inevitability of one's own mortality cannot summon an immortality-dispensing god into existence anymore than the fear of falling can grant one wings of feather and light.That reality may occasionally frighten us, disgust us, or sadden us is one of the things grown-ups learn to accept. It gives the joys a preciousness that treacle about the unending ecstasy supposedly awaiting beyond the grave cheapens infinitely.
Sandwalk's fans like science. Science tells us that the universe will inevitably self-destruct in several billion more years. Looking at things through a naturalistic materialistic lens, before the aging Sun envelopes our orbit, life on Earth will have long since ceased. And, as I have seen Victor Stenger say (paraphrased), 'If you think there's another planet out there in the universe to which a remnant of Earthly humanity can escape, forget it.'Imagine a Bell Curve with the universe’s big bang event at the lower left beginning of the curve (14 billion years ago), and the cosmic end of the universe on the lower right (unknown future). Our time of advanced civilization on Earth seems to be at the bell’s center apex. Natural quantum and cosmic evolutionary processes don’t simply always end in death; they appear designed to die. Only humans, of all Earth’s living creatures, could conceive of a Bell Curve, gather scientific data, and ponder its meaning. I wonder if Steve O. and Lone P. have ever asked, ‘Why does life, including biologically morphologically unique human life, exist in a gigantic finely tuned universe on a solitary planet apparently designed to provide an ideal living environment for a brief period, only to die?’ I wonder if they have ever pondered whether Earth’s uniqueness in the universe, and our living capacity for hope, caring and love have any greater meaning than a purposeless dead-end.
Denny:Science tells us that the universe will inevitably self-destruct in several billion more years.Where? I've heard speculation that the speed of expansion of the universe is increasing over time, but that doesn't equate with the universe "self-destructing". That's just it eventually getting extremely boring (subjectively speaking).'If you think there's another planet out there in the universe to which a remnant of Earthly humanity can escape, forget it.'And?Seriously, what is it with you guys and this frantic need to deny that things can actually come to an end? How self-obsessed are you that you have to insist you, and anything and everything you care about, will exist FOREVER?So one day there won't be a humanity. So one day there won't be a YOU. SO WHAT? You're here NOW. MAKE something of it. DO something with it. If you're unwilling to do so much as pick your nose unless it's invested with some sort of transcendent significance that will have all of a supposed creation oooing and awwwing down the corridors of eternity, that's just sad. GIVE YOUR OWN LIFE MEANING NOW. If it turns out you're right and you get to live forever, hey, bonus round. But don't miss out on making the most of what you know you have, because there's a very real possibility THIS IS ALL YOU GET.Why does life, including biologically morphologically unique human life, exist in a gigantic finely tuned universeAnd the water puddle asks, "Wow! How can it be that this hole I'm in is shaped EXACTLY to match the contours of ME? THERE MUST BE A PUDDLEGOD IN WHOSE IMAGE I AM MADE!"Is it really so inconceivable that a different shaped hole would give rise to a different shaped puddle? A universe with different "fine tuning" would give rise to order different from what we know. You guys always always always put the cart before the horse. The universe isn't fine tuned to life. Life in this universe conforms to the conditions OF this universe; life on this planet conforms to the conditions OF this planet. Not the other way around.I wonder if they have ever pondered whether Earth’s uniqueness in the universeHow do you know its conditions are unique in the universe? Been everywhere in the universe, have you? Sorry, I knew you BELIEVED in God; I didn't know you WERE God.
Yes Denny, you are unique, just like every one else.There is just no beating the humble xtian for self centred narcissism.Despite the fact that a vanishingly small fraction of the universe is amenable to human life, apparently it was designed with you in mind.Your claims of fine tuning and uniqueness are bald assertions made without evidence and there is a plethora of evidence that contradicts a fine tuned universe and a uniquely designed earth.But you already know that.I can only conclude that you are projecting a fear of the dark and death and the result is an irrational religious superstition as demonstrated by your comments.
Lone Primate, are you quibbling with my term “self-destruct” or the reality of a universe that will cease to foster life, even the life of a star. If you are as scientifically informed as I assumed, you already know that’s not speculation, it’s an inescapable conclusion.Lone Primate, “I've heard speculation that the speed of expansion of the universe is increasing over time, but that doesn't equate with the universe "self-destructing". What about the cooling, and its consequences?That's just it eventually getting extremely boring (subjectively speaking).Lone Primate, “Seriously … will exist FOREVER?” Yes.Lone Primate, “If it turns out you're right and you get to live forever, hey, bonus round.” Your analogy implies a ‘game’. But (building on you analogy), you can’t win if you don’t play the game – Jesus.Lone Primate, ‘don't miss out on making the most of what you know you have, because there's a very real possibility THIS IS ALL YOU GET.” No, this life is the option to choose. The next life is the consequence of the choice.steve oberski, “there is a plethora of evidence that contradicts a fine tuned universe and a uniquely designed earth.” Make a serious argument that debunks the anthropic principle and all that supports it.
Denny:the reality of a universe that will cease to foster lifeYour great designer at work, presumably? He's not much for quality or forethought, I have to say, all things considered. At least looking at the real world; the imaginary stuff where we sit on cotton candy playing golden harps forever notwithstanding.it’s an inescapable conclusion.No, Denny, it isn't, and I thought you'd be sharper about this by now. There's still a lot we don't know about what the universe consists of the interactions it undergoes and even if so-called "constants" can change over time. Within the lifetime of people still living, we've gone from a universe that consisted solely of our galaxy, then many in a steady state, then to many in an expanding universe. Only you theists seem to want to constantly insist we know everything (of course, that's only when it suits you so say so, like now). So it's not "inescapable" at all. In fact, I expect it will remain a question open to study long after we're gone.What about the cooling, and its consequences?What about them? Let me cut to the chase here. You're lamenting the lack of little girls riding ponies through the scene, taking a deep breath and observing how wonderful it all is, and what a swell guy God is, huh? Well, tough. If that's the way the universe is going, that's the way it's going. Just like you're not 20 anymore, and you can't do the things you did when you were. Things move on and change and sometimes what was possible ceases to be. But we ARE alive, here, now, and it's interesting and exciting and there are new things to learn and do. Why is that worthless to you if somehow, somewhere it isn't like that FOREVER? Why can't you simply enjoy what you have, since you are here, and it's here to enjoy? Suck it up already.you can’t win if you don’t play the game – Jesus.BZZZZZZZZZZT! Awww, I'm sorry, Denny, but the answer our Judge was looking for was "Allah". But thanks for playing; here are some lovely parting gifts... Johnny?Thanks, Wink! Denny, you've guessed wrong in Name That Lord, so you get... ETERNAL DAMNATION! Why were you so silly as to choose Jesus when Allah made his intentions clear through Mohammed HUNDREDS of years later?See you in Hell, Denny Reb...? :)No, this life is the option to choose.Yeah, so you all say. You Christians with your Fords, you Muslims with your Chevs, Jews with Beamers, Hindus with a half a dozen SMART cars. Whatever. I'm gonna do the natural thing and walk, thanks.And again, what it's Chevys instead of Fords, Denny? What do you intend to say if God prefers to be called "Allah", and there ain't no "son of" in sight?
@Denny Make a serious argument that debunks the anthropic principle and all that supports it.I have a better idea, since you are the one making the claim that your invisible sky fairy poofed the universe into existence, what say you provide some evidence for such an entity.For extra marks, explain how your argument side steps the problem of infinite regress and why you have abandoned the principles espoused by Occam's razor.
Lone Primate, “He's not much for quality or forethought, I have to say, all things considered.”In this world, through our physical being, He gives us an option to function as non-robotic non-instinctive spiritual beings, and to choose the Creator over the created.Lone Primate, “the imaginary stuff where we sit on cotton candy playing golden harps forever notwithstanding.”Doesn’t that seem like a rather childish notion to you? It does to me.Lone Primate, “There's still a lot we don't know about what the universe consists of the interactions it undergoes and even if so-called "constants" can change over time...”That’s all wishful thinking that diminishes the ultimate value of our present and future existence. Otherwise, you would have to confront the truth of the Bible – that we all fall short of God’s glory and to enter His Kingdom (heaven) requires a redemptive act made possible by Jesus and our own free will choice. Lone Primate, “ Why is that worthless to you if somehow, somewhere it isn't like that FOREVER?”It has worth for me that doesn’t cease with the cessation of life on this physically and spiritually limited planet. Lone Primate, “Why can't you simply enjoy what you have, since you are here, and it's here to enjoy?” Believe me, I do enjoy; a wife I don’t deserve, kids for whom I am thankful and proud, grandkids that give me glee and joy, work that has often been inspiring and rewarding, Dr’s that saved me from cancer, Christian brothers and sisters who humbly revere God with me, and a God who has patiently and gracefully blessed me with all of the above and more.Lone Primate, “Denny, but the answer our Judge was looking for was ‘Allah’”Regarding the rest of Lone Primate’s remarks – Everybody can’t be right, and everybody can’t be wrong. It’s you choice.
steve oberski, “what say you provide some evidence for such an entity.”First of all, the burden of proof on me to prove God exist is no greater than the burden on you to prove He does not. There could be consequences to our conclusions. I hope you’re considering how well you’ve done your homework. It would be my personal desire to go to heaven with you and all of my other Sandwalk friends. If you think you have done sufficient homework, and if you think you passed the course, what’s the evidence for YOUR conclusion?Wow. “Occam's razor.” I haven’t thought about it for some time. I’ll get back to you.
@Denny Everybody can’t be right, and everybody can’t be wrong.Christopher Hitchens has remarked that this is why he never tires of debating religious people: you never know what they'll say next.
Denny speaks of God as if all religions define their Gods identically. Obviously they don't, which is why in Ireland alone there are over 350 different religions [mostly claiming something special about Jesus, but sufficiently varied between them to prevent them all joining the Catholic religion with its infallible Pope]. The typical Christian definition of God is of a Perfect Being, all-loving, all-knowing, all-powerful, with a personal [sic] interest in each of us. This definition contradicts our everyday experience: the tsunami, earthquakes, volcanoes, nature red in tooth and claw, babies born with all kinds of natural problems. Denny should present a rational explanation for these contradictions.