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Atheism

Re: Atheism
February 21, 2014, 03:53:22 PM
Crow,

Astute observation. I might add a nugget of interest: rationalism follows a rise in literacy rates. I don't know the tipping point, but as language fluency rises so do formal rationalist schools like Logic or Empiricism, mathematics, the sciences, you name it.

Wild,

Your case is accurate, but I don't and won't follow with the rhetoric that it is deliberate degeneration. Humanists truly believe they are making moral progress towards utopia.

My point was that Christianity arose during a hot bed of religious sensibilities; none of which were divorced from their metaphysical sympatheties.

There was something rotten about the earth and the human condition that needed to be transcended and the deliverance was in heaven. We can see how later on, that fundamental view leads humanists to believe mankind needs to be remade, morally, and heaven ought to be on earth-in a sense.

Christianity really stressed the private life of individuals to such a degree that it shattered classical law which had no conception of the private individual. Jesus told his disciplines to work out their own sin and salvation in private. Later humanistic moralists like to point out the inconsistency between that and the institutional persecution of homosexuality. Humanists use the common trope that whatever one does in the privacy of their home without hurting anyone should be allowed.

Shit I'm ranting. Anyway I'm trying to connect the dots here without writing a book. It feels like We'd have to dig further into the past to look at the landscape before Christianity, and see if some proto humanism existed.

By stroke of luck, it could have been any one of the religious sensibilities of that time, Rome happened to pick up Christianity for reasons that are less than important to the topic.

Re: Atheism
February 23, 2014, 02:58:10 AM
The value of empiricism is that it was no longer enough to simply shore up an argument or a position that met the rules of logic, you had to demonstrate it. It had to be proven against reality as it can be repeatedly ddemonstrated to other observers.

Yep Nihilism in action. Some people even think empirical discoveries in quantum physics have challenged certain rules of logic, but I couldn't elaborate on this.

The limitations are obvious. Empiricism is not applicable to metaphysics which is "the stuff beyond physics." Empiricism is time sensitive. Pure positivism could be used to reject truths which are true but lack in evidence buried over time, burned, destroyed.

What is the alternative you are vaguely gesturing at? What is this alternative 'stuff', this knowledge which is not 'time sensitive', eternal? Mathematics? Sure. Logic? Sure. What else? Come! Let us have it.

With all respect, your whole post was pointing out limitations in empiricism without offering a positive view of the alternative. (I think I know why...).

I'm a bit confused. What do you mean by alternatives?

That's what I was asking you! Did you indicate that empirical knowledge is limited in its scope, in some sense. If so, what is the other knowledge being left out?

Re: Atheism
February 23, 2014, 04:36:25 AM
The value of empiricism is that it was no longer enough to simply shore up an argument or a position that met the rules of logic, you had to demonstrate it. It had to be proven against reality as it can be repeatedly ddemonstrated to other observers.

Yep Nihilism in action. Some people even think empirical discoveries in quantum physics have challenged certain rules of logic, but I couldn't elaborate on this.

The limitations are obvious. Empiricism is not applicable to metaphysics which is "the stuff beyond physics." Empiricism is time sensitive. Pure positivism could be used to reject truths which are true but lack in evidence buried over time, burned, destroyed.

What is the alternative you are vaguely gesturing at? What is this alternative 'stuff', this knowledge which is not 'time sensitive', eternal? Mathematics? Sure. Logic? Sure. What else? Come! Let us have it.

With all respect, your whole post was pointing out limitations in empiricism without offering a positive view of the alternative. (I think I know why...).

I'm a bit confused. What do you mean by alternatives?

That's what I was asking you! Did you indicate that empirical knowledge is limited in its scope, in some sense. If so, what is the other knowledge being left out?

Yes and only because I believe in using different tools for their required tasks. Empiricism happens to be useful, but it is over used and the results are something like using a forklift to mince garlic.