Wednesday, August 24, 2005


Don't know if Dr. K is the exception that proves the rule, but I found a 50-something year old who is an agnostic & disproves my argument that no one over 30 could be an agnostic.

Editing down our Emails exchange spurred by Reason's visit to the Creation Mega-Conference:

Was screwing off this morning by delving into your annotated article. Friggin hilarious, but it is deeply disturbing to be reminded how non-rational certain human minds can be. It is one thing to disagree on whether something is factual, but it is an entirely different phenomenon when a human gravitates towards, and clings to some premise simply because he/she finds said premise to be appealing.

I never considered any intrinsic conflict between the idea that evolution put life on this planet.... and the concept of a god and a "will" to create. I still don't. Then again.... concepts such as "the fall" and original sin seem absurd to me.... so no slippery slope concerns on my behalf.

There was a good line in the final article "Instead the conferees were a bunch of decent people trying to make sense of the world and live good lives. The deeply saddening thing is that these decent people have come to believe they have to reject modern science in order to do so."

Some people are able to effectively compartmentalize their irrational thinking, rather than dumping science. I had a quantum physics professor ("intro to quantum physics" class) who told the class he was a christian. I was still searching for a more-conventional (and traditional) world view at that time.... had yet to evolve into my current mode of "non-belief" in anything. His revelation was not at all useful or inspiring for me; subtract ten points.

Non-belief is not equivalent to dis-belief, nor does it equate to skeptical belief (agnostic trap). It's almost functionally equivalent to the buddhist "belief" in the impermanence of all worldly phenomena. I'm not sure that I even endorse the concept of a unified, or collective, reality.

Buddhism also has cause-and-effect as a cornerstone principle, but that causes problems when carried to logical conclusion.

Would classify you as an atheist off this response, though not a devout atheist like the Ginger Haired Yank.

Being a fan of Nietzsche, I somewhat agree with his critique of Buddhism being a laid back anti-life philosophy.

It wouldn't bother me to be classed as an atheist, but I always thought that atheists "believed" that a god does not exist. That would violate my principle of putting a conclusion at the front end of a philosophic inquiry. Dis-belief is equivalent to belief in my book.... and equally undesirable. Perhaps a "devout" atheist has disbelief, and a "jack-atheist" such as myself... has no preference.

My preference is for the jury to remain "out" on virtually every theory. Is that another way of saying that the truth is a function of where you are at on the timeline of existence? Why should reality with a capital "R" remain constant over time?

Whenever you have strong identification with an idea or a theory..... that is a "filter setting" for how information you receive is processed.

Have limited knowledge of Nietzsche.... did have a roommate with a PhD in philosophy, but I forgot those discussions of 35 years ago. The criticism of Buddhism being "non-involved" with life is rather common.... and is applied to other mystical traditions belief systems. If I had to endorse a philosophical doctrine.... Buddhism would be the least onerous for me.

This puts you squarely in the agnostic camp. Didn't think it was possible for anyone to stay agnostic this late in life, but you've proven an exception to my rule.

Is that a good thing, bad thing, or neither.... in your view?

well i had blogged that no one could be an agnostic past their 20's but now that you're a counter example I HAVE to update my thoughts.

Thanks for the link. Seems I had the delusion that "agnostic" only fit those who were uncertain as to the existence of a deity. The indicated that agnostics can also be comfortably noncommital, or of the opinion that "we can never know for certain..."

Assuming for the sake of discussion that "collective reality" is valid:

To investigate various god and "nature of reality" concepts..... it should be possible to create testable hypotheses and theories. Unless, of course, we have a situation where "god" or gods would not want any life that evolved to sentience to have firm proof of the existence of such a supernatural entity.

And I can even propose several arguments to support that contention. Yup, sounds like we have an agnostic here.

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