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Casey Christofaris

Owner, CS3 Inc


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How do we prove an answer

that it How do we prove an answer

I just want to clarify that I do love science and the understanding of the universe that it has brought us. As well as the tech


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  • Feb 5 2013: We don't!
    We assume all things to be true which we are unable to disprove.

    The foundation of science... Karl Popper's falsifiability.
    • Feb 5 2013: No we don't.
      • Feb 5 2013: ye we do.
        • Feb 7 2013: We cannot disprove the existence of God. Must we therefore assume there is a God?

          We do not assume all things to be true which we are unable to disprove. Instead we accept the possibilty that they may be true. We determine the likelyhood that something is true and following Occum's Razor, we tend to accept the theory that requires the fewest steps in order to be true.
          For example, The universe coming into existence requires fewer steps than the universe coming into existence with the help of a God. We therefore accept that it is more likely that the universe does not require a God in order to exist. We cannot disprove God but we certainly do not assume one exists.
      • Feb 7 2013: Occam is a nice 'tool' to dissolve (personal) cognitive dissonance just by chosing theories. Ofcourse you are free to chose whatever thing you (personally) want to believe.

        But to defend my earlier post: The difference between "assume" and "accept the possibilty that they may be true" is really small. So I take it that your only problem is with the word "all", as you use Occam's razor to limit the "all" as you don't want to have conflicting ideas (god / no god) simultaneuously.
        It kind of reminds me of schrodingers cat in a way (alive / dead) ;).
        However you cannot simply say that because you chose to discard some theory because of it's unlikelyhood that you suddenly stop holding it to be true.

        So in a way you still assume the discarded theories as being true... untill they are proven to be false.

        Now as to religion... I am forced to assume that it's true. However I am also forced to assume that it is not true (as I cannot disprove the non-existence of God either). And that is where "faith" comes in for normal people. However I have no problem in not believing in God while assuming that he may exist.
        Although the question rises if religion hasn't disproven itself already....
        • Feb 7 2013: I do not choose which theories to believe, i am forced to accept them, like them or not, based on the evidence.

          The difference between assuming something is true and accepting that it may (or may not) be true is very big! I can't even imagine how you came to that conclusion.

          But yes, one of the most basic laws of propsitional logic is that something cannot be both true and false. There either is a God or there is not.

          Occums razor is a tested system and the data suggest that it works.

          And no, that is what YOU are saying not me, that discarded theories should be assumed true because they haven't be disproven. If another theory seems to explain the facts more accurately, the first theory can generally be discarded and forgotten. However it is often unreasonable to say that it is definitely not true. But that is not the same as saying, "well it must be true because nobody has disproven it yet". If you make a claim, the burden of evidence is on you. If you can produce the evidence you may convince some people, if you cannot, your claim should be assumed false untill evidence does emerge.

          I knew that it was likely that you were a believer (hence i picked God as an example) because it is generally believers who think that they can make a claim and that it is up to everybody else to disprove it. This is simply not the case, sorry.
          And you say, "normal people" like the fact that i don't accept your God makes me abnormal. I don't accept that. And as i said, you are forced to assume God does not exist until you can provide evidence. However, you not forced to assume he does exist just because there is a lack of evidnece that he does not, because providing evidence that something supernatural does not exist is not possible. You are taking it out of the field of science. In that case the laws of logic no longer apply and you are forced to rely entirely on faith. i.e. belief without reason for believe.
          You've slaughtered your own argument.
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          Feb 11 2013: If something is both true and false could that be seen as balance

          Quantum Physic says that this reality the material world is both true and not true
      • Feb 7 2013: I'm saying that you can't discard any theory while it's not proven to be false... You say that Occam's Razor is a valid tool in chosing theories... but it's not. It's the easy way out of science and into religion.
        You say that the universe is easier understood through science than "Hey someone put it there". I disagree and I'm sure you will too if you know how few things physics can truelly explain... Therefor if Occam's razor would work you would be religious by now. To think about how quantumphysics work and how that can lead to a universe... is seriously complex. While going: "Someone made this" is much shorter and easier to understand.

        Perhaps you should reread my post with the added knowledge that I don't believe in any God?

        Also... religion is a 'theory' which is, in general, not testable and therefor is not science.

        The existence of God is however (through most definitions of God, for instance you could 'test' if something can become almighty... if we can prove that one cannot then there is no god) testable and therefor could be included. So if you ask does God exist I would have to say that I don't know.
        But I can't make any claim other than that I can assume it to be true. The fact that I don't believe any of it doesn't mean I'm right in doing so.
        • Feb 7 2013: And i'm saying you can discard a theory without proving it false, if you show that another theory explains the facts more accurately. You haven't disproven the first theory, just shown that it is less likely to be true.
          Now, you are getting mixed up because of the expression "someone made this". Ofcourse it's easier to actually say out loud, but it explains nothing. It doesn't give you the mechanism by which he/she made it. If we were to explain it, we'd then have to explain how the most complex thing one can possibly imagine either came into existence or just exists. You are stuck with the same problem that we have with explaining the universe's existence, the only difference is you have added an extra step (and it just happens to be the biggest step we could possibly add). Occam's razon DOES NOT allow for that.

          Forgive me for thinking you were a believer, but with the "this is where faith comes in for normal people" line, you have only yourself to blame.

          Religion is not a theory, it is a hypothesis, and a failed one. A theory requires evidence. Whether it enters into the field of science depends on the individual claims made in the texts. Some do, some don't.

          The existence of God is not testable by any scientific standard. Because no matter what data comes back, you could simply state that God is not subject the the laws of physics. So even if we "prove" that something can become almighty (how on earth would we go about doing that?) It wouldn't apply to God.
          And the only assumption that you should be making is that you MAY be wrong in not believing. You should not assume that just because you can't be sure, there must be a God.
          Imagine you have never heard of a God. The claim had never been made that there is one. You just knew the physics (to a degree) involved in the universe's birth. If i then came to you with the emply claim of an almighty being that made it all happen, would you be forced to assume i was right? Of course not. Not without evidence...
        • Feb 7 2013: I will add that i will not be responding any further. I forgot how unrewarding internet debates were. Alot of effort for very little gain.
          That's no reflection on you ofcourse, if it was in person i'd be happy to continue.
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          Feb 11 2013: Science is theory, therefor it can not be "science"

          Also... religion is a 'theory' which is, in general, not testable and therefor is not science.

          Science fyi is Philosophy
      • Feb 7 2013: Religion doesn't call for any explaining... just for faith.
        Which is why it's so simple to believe. Which is why occam's razor would be in favor of it. Because rather than discovering anything religion tells you "it was made by design". So you don't have to question the creation at all....
        It is why when people stopped believing and started doing science that the world suddenly changed and came out of 'the dark ages'. Before then people just didn't question the world enough to make any progress.

        I don't find "being a believer" any insult / disqualification though... I just write posts in ways such that people are often confused about my own beliefs :).

        Also I just hold the 'theory' of a God being possible as true. But like I said religion is doing one heck of a job at showing that there can't be a God.
        On the whole last alinea though I would point you towards a really nice movie from Ricky Gervais called "The invention of lying".... I think that there is quite a lot of truth in that comedy.

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