Author Topic: Science is entirely based on faith  (Read 8296 times)

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Offline Dominic

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Science is entirely based on faith
« on: December 30, 2012, 02:14:17 PM »
One of the key underlying assumptions of science is that human sense perception is able to accurately detect the nature of reality.  Where devices are used to confirm or enhance human perception (eg camera, thermometer, computer, geiger counter... and many others) then human sense perception is still required to confirm those device's results.

This underlying assumption itself cannot be tested by science because it must first be assumed before science can begin.


This leads to a couple of necessary conclusions which are very significant:

- Science is entirely based on faith.  (ie faith in the underlying assumptions of science)

- To the extent that Atheism relies on science (as the only reliable source of truth) it is thus also entirely faith based.


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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2012, 02:15:20 PM »
BM. This should be fun to watch.
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2012, 02:45:10 PM »
Before we get in a big argument, I have to ask this. If scientists could predict in the mid-30's that it was possible to build an atomic bomb, and by 1945 scientists had done it, of physicists predicted years ago that we would find the Higgs boson, and we did find it, how is that equal to the bible predicting the return of Jesus 2000 years ago and nothing yet?


I don't question that humans are limited as to what they can perceive and that surely our instruments that we build to do things humans cannot are colored by said perceptions, but at least we, via science, can predict and then achieve various advances while religion continues to sit in the desert and try making striped goats by mating them in front of striped sticks. Or at least the modern equivalent, insisting the prayer works with no repeatable proof whatsoever.


Please compare your faith with the "faith" of science, which accomplishes stuff.
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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2012, 03:01:15 PM »
"We could all be in the Matrix, therefore the deity that I think is real because of where and when I happen to have been born and raised exists".

You believe evolution and there is no evidence for that. Where is the fossil record of a half man half ape. I've only ever heard about it in reading.

Offline Dominic

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2012, 03:03:23 PM »
PP,

I'm not saying that the same level of faith is reqd for science and religion.  And I'm not saying that all claims have equal validity.  Not at all.

But I do want to burst the bubble of those who think they have taken some royal high road by accepting science while rejecting all religion.  Those people have simply made a faith based decision.

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2012, 03:08:11 PM »
Well, if it works is it still faith?
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Offline Dominic

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2012, 03:27:50 PM »
Well, if it works is it still faith?

A very good question.  The quick answer is yes, it is still faith, because there is no certainty, but what 'works' is an excellent matter to raise.

A large proportion of believers would say that their faith is working for them and/or that they don't believe that their life would be working without it.  Their faith gives their lives meaning, purpose, direction and hope.

You are obviously claiming that science works and we have seen that to be true in many cases.  We have also seen where the use of science has brought significant dangers to the world.

So, yes, we definitely need to look for what works - while also keeping in mind that some things work for some people and not for others.  There is very often personal preference involved in determining the answer to 'what works'.


Offline Jontom10

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2012, 03:36:40 PM »
 Faith is accepting an idea as true without reason, or against reason. The first half of this is accepting an idea in spite of the fact that there is no justified reason to believe it.

Your statement that we take on faith that our senses accurately determine our surroundings is false. Our senses have evolved to do exactly that. Through reason and ingenuity our species has developed tools to enhance and aid our natural senses.

To say science is based entirely on faith is utter nonsense. The scientific method starts with a theory and then sets out to prove or disprove that theory. There is no faith component about it at all. You can't say that a kettle will boil as you have faith that the electrons will flow through the element and generate heat etc.

To conclude that Atheism relies on science is also utter nonsense. Atheism means that we do not believe there is a God as there is no reason to believe there is a God. The only argument for a God is "you have to have faith" other than that there is nothing, no argument whatsoever. In the face of all we have learned since coming out of the Dark Ages the idea of God becomes more and more ridiculous and the religions that peddle the idea are even more absurd at best, evil at worst.
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Offline DVZ3

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2012, 03:38:08 PM »
Here's the basic difference between faith and science...

I feel sick today and will go to the doctors.  <Intsert all sort of tests and data collected here about you>

Results: <Insert being treated for cancer here with radiation and/or other scientific treament>

Results After treatment: Person lives to see and spend their time with family and friends.



Faith:

I feel sick today and will 'Pray'.  <Insert all sort of religious but obviously superstitious stuff here>

Results: <Still sick but have prayed and have superstition on my side.....>

Results After treatment: Person dies and family and friends pretend that it was "gods will".



Did I get that about right!? 
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Offline Jontom10

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #9 on: December 30, 2012, 03:41:17 PM »


A large proportion of believers would say that their faith is working for them and/or that they don't believe that their life would be working without it.  Their faith gives their lives meaning, purpose, direction and hope.


So a smaller proportion of believers say their faith does not work?

Those that say their faith works have no reason to say that it doesn't as they are blinded by their delusion. They could pray every morning "Please God, don't crush me to death with a large piano falling from a window" and every day when they go to bed they can state that their faith is working as they weren't crushed to death by a piano. Choose any religion and your faith is based on lies and heresay. Any meaning, purpose, direction and hope derived from such a vehicle is false. Happiness of the truly ignorant.
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Offline Dominic

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #10 on: December 30, 2012, 03:47:46 PM »

DVZ3,

You've missed the point.  Going to the doctor is based on faith.  Accepting treatment is based on faith.   Praying is based on faith.

Simply different faith choices.  I'm not telling you which faith choices to make.  Just to recognise the faith aspect of all our choices and stop pretending that your current faith choices are the 'righteous' ones.


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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #11 on: December 30, 2012, 03:54:00 PM »
Well, now we may have to define what "works" is.


If something makes you feel better but otherwise provides no benefit, does it still work? Especially if the process seems to promise more than you are receiving?


If faith gives a person confidence, regardless of its truth, how justified is that confidence? How can you tell if it works? My keyboard, which wirelessly connects to my computer, which wirelessly connects to the Internet, which gets this message to you and anyone else who wants to read it, is able to pass on the words "science works" with ease.


And if truth is hard for humans to find (and I'm not questioning that aspect at all), why do you have so much faith in religion when one of the possibilities is that there never was a god, just a bunch of people guilty of thinking they knew what the truth was? Which is exactly where I think it came from.


And then there is this: Science doesn't claim to have the truth. Science is looking for it. Science is finding things out that fit into theories that have consistency and that seem to match well with reality as we know it. Science is always looking to improve the knowledge base in hopes that someday it will actually approach truth. But that may be centuries or millennia away. Those of us who follow science get excited every time a new discovery comes along that expands what we seem to know, that contradicts old views, that opens up even more possibilities for discover.


While a bunch of theists tell my son can't marry his boyfriend, because they don't like change at all.


Faith of the sort you are espousing seems to want to freeze humans in one spot while we all sit around waiting for the kid to come back. Science, with our without faith involved, wants to dope slap ignorance at every opportunity and help make the world we live in as understandable as possible. I'm not saying that it always succeeds, and certainly some scientific discoveries have been used for evil. But so too have religious discoveries ("Hey look, heretics burn!"), so neither side has a monopoly on the morality that each wishes were real. But I like to think that human progress, scientific, social or otherwise, is a lot better way to fix human problems than sticking to a 2,000 year old recipe that had 1500 years to work on the problem unabated and didn't.


Added before posting: The doctor thing? If most people who go to the doctor with a broken arm get it fixed and the arm heals and is useful again, why is my choosing to go to the doctor to get my arm fixed an act of faith. I see it as common sense. And what other options do I have? Prayer? How do I get my hands together to do that if one arm is at an odd 60 degree angle that wasn't there this morning?
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Offline Karl

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #12 on: December 30, 2012, 03:55:43 PM »
All arguments against religion are well planted here but I think the subject is not about that if I understand it right. Of course obviously prayer does not work and a radio does. I think what Dominic is saying is that we rely on our perception of reality of which science forms part. And he is pointing out the common situation that shares with religion.

Practically spoken obviously science beats religion, no doubt. But then again, we are not the end of things. What will be our perception in the future. In the dark ages little thought was spent on science and the world model was conclusive for most. Now we are in a different situation relying on the same senses, plus the technical enhancements available. I can actually see his point whilst I still find the thought of believing in a god utterly ridiculous.

Offline Dominic

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2012, 03:59:21 PM »

So a smaller proportion of believers say their faith does not work?

A smaller proportion may say 'I am trying hard to do the right thing but am not yet seeing great results'.
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Those that say their faith works have no reason to say that it doesn't as they are blinded by their delusion. They could pray every morning "Please God, don't crush me to death with a large piano falling from a window" and every day when they go to bed they can state that their faith is working as they weren't crushed to death by a piano.

You have probably heard of the Placebo Effect.  People believe something will improve their health and as a result it does.  Every reputable medical test, allows for this effect and accepts it as real.  Science accepts that - belief itself has real physical outcomes.  Have you thought about that ?  Do you think that science knows the full story of that yet ?   

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Choose any religion and your faith is based on lies and heresay. Any meaning, purpose, direction and hope derived from such a vehicle is false. Happiness of the truly ignorant.

You are simply spouting dogma.  Your belief wins.  Other belief loses.  You are doing what you hate hearing theists do.


Offline DVZ3

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #14 on: December 30, 2012, 04:18:28 PM »
Quote
You've missed the point.  Going to the doctor is based on faith.  Accepting treatment is based on faith.   Praying is based on faith.

Simply different faith choices.  I'm not telling you which faith choices to make.  Just to recognise the faith aspect of all our choices and stop pretending that your current faith choices are the 'righteous' ones.

I'm afraid you missed the point and also the point of your post.  I don't need 'faith' to know how something that is designed to do what it's supposed to works.

I don't need 'faith' to know that if I point a gun at someone and fire the trigger it will potentially kill them.

However, if I point a bannana at a person and squish it in my hand 'believing' it will kill them is what 'faith' is.

Believing in something even though there is simpley no evedence to the contrary.


Do I have to explain your own post....!?


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Offline DVZ3

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #15 on: December 30, 2012, 04:20:52 PM »
One of the key underlying assumptions of science is that human sense perception is able to accurately detect the nature of reality.  Where devices are used to confirm or enhance human perception (eg camera, thermometer, computer, geiger counter... and many others) then human sense perception is still required to confirm those device's results.

... then you don't unserstand science and/or faith means and stop trying to 'reinvent' what science actually is....  :-\

What are your credentials?
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Offline 3sigma

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #16 on: December 30, 2012, 04:21:24 PM »
One of the key underlying assumptions of science is that human sense perception is able to accurately detect the nature of reality.  Where devices are used to confirm or enhance human perception (eg camera, thermometer, computer, geiger counter... and many others) then human sense perception is still required to confirm those device's results.

Here we go again, another religious believer retreats into solipsism in an effort to justify his irrational beliefs. What you are saying here is that we cannot know anything is real, which, of course, includes your belief in your god. At least science has solid evidence and sound arguments supporting its conclusions, which is more than can be said of your irrational beliefs.


A large proportion of believers would say that their faith is working for them and/or that they don't believe that their life would be working without it.  Their faith gives their lives meaning, purpose, direction and hope.

Exactly. Religious faith is all about providing emotional comfort. The difference between science and religion is that science provides the truth with no regard for emotional comfort whereas religion provides emotional comfort with no regard for the truth.


Quote
You are obviously claiming that science works and we have seen that to be true in many cases.  We have also seen where the use of science has brought significant dangers to the world.

Yes, science works. And yes, the use of scientific results by politicians has brought dangers to the world, but science itself doesn’t dictate how people should behave, unlike religions. Science doesn’t say people must be killed for disagreeing with theories, insulting scientists or leaving a particular scientific discipline. There is no death penalty for heresy, blasphemy and apostasy in science. We don’t see scientists constantly killing each other over scientific theories. That sort of sectarian violence is the domain of religions.

« Last Edit: December 30, 2012, 04:26:00 PM by 3sigma »
A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence. – David Hume 1711–1776

Offline DVZ3

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #17 on: December 30, 2012, 04:24:26 PM »
This is almost analgous to some of the gun arguments....

"If you want to ban guns because they kill people, then why don't you want to ban cars because they kill people too..."

Guns were 'designed' to kill... The science of F = M x A or in other words.... A very, very fast moving object... etc...

Faith was 'designed' to sway a group of people to a potentailly and knowinly 'false' idea.


Get it yet...?
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Offline DVZ3

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #18 on: December 30, 2012, 04:26:18 PM »
Science exists because of tested and proven equations that control our universe and is the reason we were able to land men on the moon.  Not faith based, but science/equation (math) based.

Can you give me a faith equation please?

No seriouosly, give me a faith equation....

I think that it's like chistians pretending that the divide by zero error or infininity is what religioun acutally is....

I get it.... you and nobody else can explain it.  Sorry, but I'll go with what can and is explained/proven today without some nobody that just tells me the math 'should work'... 'I just don't know how'

Come on....
« Last Edit: December 30, 2012, 04:29:01 PM by DVZ3 »
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Offline DVZ3

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #19 on: December 30, 2012, 04:34:39 PM »

.. and that's the difference...

"Faith" was 'designed' to sway a group of people to a potentailly and knowinly 'false' idea.

"Science" was to know the truth about how our world/universe works.
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Offline pianodwarf

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #20 on: December 30, 2012, 04:44:13 PM »
If science were "entirely based on faith", then we should see the same phenomenon regarding science as we see with religion: widespread disagreement about everything, even down to very simple and fundamental basics.  In religious circles, for example, ask for a definition of "god", and you'll get just about every response you can conceive of and even some that might not have ever occurred to you.  God is a spirit, god is flesh and blood, god is the universe itself, I am god, there's only one god, there is more than one god, god is a trinity, god is a unity, god is an alien who lives on Kolob.

In science, however, there is no such widespread disagreement.  In fact, there's very little disagreement about anything.  For example, there is one theory of mechanics (Newtonian), which everyone uses and agrees is correct, barring relativistic effects, of course.  There is one model of the solar system, the heliocentric one.[1]  Aircraft are designed using identical principles everywhere; there is no equivalent to the "Jewish, Christian, Hindu, and Muslim theories of aerodynamics".

Perhaps most tellingly, in areas where there is disagreement amongst scientists, science attempts to resolve the disagreement by investigating further, gathering and analyzing more data.  When Shapley argued that the Milky Way was the entirety of the universe, and Curtis countered that he believed that other galaxies existed outside of our own, they didn't try to kill each other, as has been depressingly common in religious disagreements.  They each presented the reasons that they believed what they did and why they thought the other one was wrong, and when further data showed that Shapley was wrong, he did not frantically cling to his position.  He admitted he had been wrong and moved on.

To say that science is "faith-based" is silly.  One of the most basic precepts of science is that you should not believe anything is true unless there is verifiable evidence to support it.
 1. There had been competing theories, such as the Ptolemaic one, but they were all formulated before the scientific method had been codified -- which should tell you something.
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Offline Karl

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #21 on: December 30, 2012, 04:55:57 PM »
Exactly. Religious faith is all about providing emotional comfort. The difference between science and religion is that science provides the truth with no regard for emotional comfort whereas religion provides emotional comfort with no regard for the truth.
Whilst I have never believed in a god, not even when I was 2 years old, neither in Santa or the Easterbunny too, I find what you say is one of the central problems we face today. Who in the end is happier, the emotionally comfortable or the disillusioned realist? Even being wrong my grandma was a very happy person and religion assisted in that. She never suffered from the fact that a delusion made her happy. It is only the aggressive theists that worry me. The overwhelming part of believing harmless everyday people do not harm anybody. Their community works are indispensible. If they break a bone they are smart enough to see a doctor too.

But then again this is an atheist site and maybe the author just tried to find leverage to pretend that believe works as well as science does. Which is obviously not the case. So claiming that due to human physics science and religion are equally based on faith in order to promote religion is a little far fetched.

Offline DVZ3

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #22 on: December 30, 2012, 04:56:01 PM »
Here's a thought....

Why is faith so questionable and/or scared of science?  ( I know why but this is rhetorical)

Science doesn't even have to consider faith.  Not at all! Whatsoever.

But yet people like you come here and question how science affects faith.

Ironic when you think about it.  Science doesn't consider or care (nor does it matter) about faith for it's answers.  All the while 'faith' seems so scared, worried and trying to protect it's 'false' answers from science...

Any 'reasonable' person should come to an obvious conclusion who is the one 'really seeking truth'.
Hguols: "Its easier for me to believe that a God created everything...."

Offline Dominic

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #23 on: December 30, 2012, 04:56:24 PM »

And if truth is hard for humans to find (and I'm not questioning that aspect at all), why do you have so much faith in religion when one of the possibilities is that there never was a god, just a bunch of people guilty of thinking they knew what the truth was? Which is exactly where I think it came from.


PP,

Yes, with all faith there is the possibility of error or at least partial misunderstanding.

The faith in science is based on sense perception.  It assumes the accuracy of sense perception.  It cannot verify that assumption.  Now that doesn't mean that science is wrong it just shows that the whole thing hangs on certain premises.  Science assumes the physical world is the basis of reality and then proceeds from that starting point.  It then places consciousness as some resultant phenomenon.

Religious belief on the other hand (generally) assumes that consciousness is the fundamental and that physical reality is one resultant phenomenon.

[3Sigma, this is not Solipsism - A solipsist claims 'only I exist' and all else is created by my mind]

Now, can either of these two positions claim a moral high ground ?  Claim that they take precedence over the other by some basic law of existence ?

A claim that ONLY science and a fundamental physical reality are the default position has no validity.  It is simply a choice.  For many people it is what they are taught from birth.  It is part of the language they use and they cannot imagine anything different.

If the question is raised of whether they are in fact simply dreaming, imagining, being tricked, in a matrix etc then the only defence is 'I don't believe it' - pure faith.  Nothing but faith.

Now consider the alternative.  That consciousness is the fundamental and that physical experience is a resulting component.  Is the situation the same ?  No, it is not, for this reason-

If I doubt my own consciousness, then who is doubting?  I am!  Thus I have proved my own consciousness by doubting it.  This applies to consciousness but does not apply to material, physical reality which can always be doubted.  What cannot be doubted is the experience, the perception of existing.

This is not of course proof, one way way or the other, but it shows that the religious belief of the primacy of consciousness above and beyond physical reality actually stands up better to the most intense scrutiny.

As soon as physical evidence is called for, that request already assumes the primacy of physical existence.  So that demand cannot be used to deny the primacy of consciousness.

Ultimately whatever our beliefs, we are talking about faith and no-one has the moral high-ground regarding those beliefs.


Offline The Gawd

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #24 on: December 30, 2012, 04:57:10 PM »
Why do theists try this shameful trick? Isnt it embarressing? I wish I had more to add, but all I could really do is shake my head. All the shit around me that works due to science and theists try to posit the idea that I'm using faith when I turn on my TV... its just a desperate ploy that will never work on anyone with a functioning brain.

Offline pianodwarf

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #25 on: December 30, 2012, 05:00:55 PM »
Why do theists try this shameful trick?

Probably the same reason so many of them also try to say that atheism is a religion.

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Isnt it embarressing?

They don't seem to be embarrassed by saying it.  I'm certainly embarrassed when I hear it.
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Offline DVZ3

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #26 on: December 30, 2012, 05:02:49 PM »
Why don't you understand yet!?

The reason we have engineered vehicles and great and tall structures and complex systems is because of science which brought about engineering.  What world would you expect if we ignored all this and just went....


"Strictly faith based!?"

I've read about the Myans and how many people they sacrificed for the bountiful harvest of their crops for food.


But me, I prefer science and why and how crops grow verses all your accepted carnage acceptance of loss of human life... because of 'faith'
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Offline 3sigma

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #27 on: December 30, 2012, 05:26:05 PM »
Whilst I have never believed in a god, not even when I was 2 years old, neither in Santa or the Easterbunny too, I find what you say is one of the central problems we face today.

Just because science doesn’t provide emotional comfort doesn’t mean people can’t find it elsewhere without turning to religious beliefs. Take yourself, for instance. Presumably you aren’t desperately depressed and yet you aren’t religious so religious belief isn’t necessary for people to be happy. Given that and the harm caused only by religions, I think the world would be better off without them.
A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence. – David Hume 1711–1776

Offline 3sigma

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Re: Science is entirely based on faith
« Reply #28 on: December 30, 2012, 05:28:19 PM »
[3Sigma, this is not Solipsism - A solipsist claims 'only I exist' and all else is created by my mind]

So for it to be solipsism, you would have to say something like this:

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If I doubt my own consciousness, then who is doubting?  I am!  Thus I have proved my own consciousness by doubting it.  This applies to consciousness but does not apply to material, physical reality which can always be doubted.  What cannot be doubted is the experience, the perception of existing.

In other words, the only thing you can be certain of is your own existence, everything else is in doubt—you could just be imagining it. No… that couldn’t be solipsism, could it?


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Ultimately whatever our beliefs, we are talking about faith and no-one has the moral high-ground regarding those beliefs.

Scientific beliefs are justified by solid evidence and sound arguments. Your irrational religious beliefs are not. Science certainly has the rational high ground.
A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence. – David Hume 1711–1776