Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

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Dark Matter
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Dark Matter » February 20th, 2018, 12:40 pm

ProgrammingGodJordan wrote:
January 6th, 2018, 1:49 am
  1. As Neil deGrasse Tyson says, science is true whether or not one believes in it!
  2. Pertinently, that one may believe in science, does not suddenly remove that belief is a concept that permits that one may typically ignore evidence, as observed in the analysis below:
    • Belief (by definition and research) is a model, that permits both science, and non-science.
    • However, crucially, belief typically facilitates that people especially ignore evidence.
    • A model that generally permits the large ignorance of evidence contrasts science.
    • Instead, we may employ scientific thinking, that largely prioritizes evidence, rather than a model (i.e. belief) that facilitates largely, the ignorance of evidence.
  3. Unfortunately, I had been a theist up until my 21'st birthday. Fortunately, at age 22 (I am now 27), I finally identified as an atheist. After 4 years of being an atheist, one day I thought about belief, and I recognized that not only was theistic faith invalid, but also, the very concept of belief!
    • As a precaution for preventing myself from absorbing nonsense, I had come to invent something called "non beliefism".
    • Beyond atheism, "non beliefism" enables a state of mind that rejects not merely religious belief, but the very concept of belief.
Hmmm. Interesting belief system. 8)

Steve3007
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Steve3007 » February 20th, 2018, 1:11 pm

Chili wrote:
Greta wrote:That was not NdGT's point. No scientist, including him, would for even a moment claim that science is absolutely true, being acutely aware that all scientific knowledge is provisional. He is trying to get across to the superstitious and uneducated with this, not philosophers.
I would prefer to hear it in his own words.
You can easily hear it in his own words in that very short video clip that was posted by ProgrammingGodJordan. In that, the subject was the old Evolution versus Creationism thing. Neil deGrasse Tyson was simply making the point that the question of whether something like the Theory of Evolution is an accurate description of the world is not a matter of personal taste. It's either true or false regardless of whether we decide to "believe in it". As Greta says, in the context of philosophy we can go into this in more detail, but in a TV interview it's best to keep it simple and stick to the old dictum that "we are entitled to our own opinions but not to our own facts".

Chili
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Chili » February 20th, 2018, 11:14 pm

Steve3007 wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 1:11 pm
Chili wrote:
I would prefer to hear it in his own words.
You can easily hear it in his own words in that very short video clip that was posted by ProgrammingGodJordan. In that, the subject was the old Evolution versus Creationism thing. Neil deGrasse Tyson was simply making the point that the question of whether something like the Theory of Evolution is an accurate description of the world is not a matter of personal taste. It's either true or false regardless of whether we decide to "believe in it". As Greta says, in the context of philosophy we can go into this in more detail, but in a TV interview it's best to keep it simple and stick to the old dictum that "we are entitled to our own opinions but not to our own facts".
You are making my point, if he is saying that truth is a fixed thing revealed by science.

Chili
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Chili » February 20th, 2018, 11:34 pm

Here's something I read off of a Psychology Today blog.

Satoshi Kanazawa
The Scientific Fundamentalist

Common misconceptions about science I: “Scientific proof”
Why there is no such thing as a scientific proof.
Posted Nov 16, 2008

Misconceptions about the nature and practice of science abound, and are sometimes even held by otherwise respectable practicing scientists themselves. I have dispelled some of them (misconceptions, not scientists) in earlier posts (for example, that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, beauty is only skin-deep, and you can’t judge a book by its cover). Unfortunately, there are many other misconceptions about science. One of the most common misconceptions concerns the so-called “scientific proofs.” Contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as a scientific proof.

Proofs exist only in mathematics and logic, not in science. Mathematics and logic are both closed, self-contained systems of propositions, whereas science is empirical and deals with nature as it exists. The primary criterion and standard of evaluation of scientific theory is evidence, not proof. All else equal (such as internal logical consistency and parsimony), scientists prefer theories for which there is more and better evidence to theories for which there is less and worse evidence. Proofs are not the currency of science.

Proofs have two features that do not exist in science: They are final, and they are binary. Once a theorem is proven, it will forever be true and there will be nothing in the future that will threaten its status as a proven theorem (unless a flaw is discovered in the proof). Apart from a discovery of an error, a proven theorem will forever and always be a proven theorem.

In contrast, all scientific knowledge is tentative and provisional, and nothing is final. There is no such thing as final proven knowledge in science. The currently accepted theory of a phenomenon is simply the best explanation for it among all available alternatives. Its status as the accepted theory is contingent on what other theories are available and might suddenly change tomorrow if there appears a better theory or new evidence that might challenge the accepted theory. No knowledge or theory (which embodies scientific knowledge) is final. That, by the way, is why science is so much fun.

Further, proofs, like pregnancy, are binary; a mathematical proposition is either proven (in which case it becomes a theorem) or not (in which case it remains a conjecture until it is proven). There is nothing in between. A theorem cannot be kind of proven or almost proven. These are the same as unproven.

In contrast, there is no such binary evaluation of scientific theories. Scientific theories are neither absolutely false nor absolutely true. They are always somewhere in between. Some theories are better, more credible, and more accepted than others. There is always more, more credible, and better evidence for some theories than others. It is a matter of more or less, not either/or. For example, experimental evidence is better and more credible than correlational evidence, but even the former cannot prove a theory; it only provides very strong evidence for the theory and against its alternatives.

The knowledge that there is no such thing as a scientific proof should give you a very easy way to tell real scientists from hacks and wannabes. Real scientists never use the words “scientific proofs,” because they know no such thing exists. Anyone who uses the words “proof,” “prove” and “proven” in their discussion of science is not a real scientist.

The creationists and other critics of evolution are absolutely correct when they point out that evolution is “just a theory” and it is not “proven.” What they neglect to mention is that everything in science is just a theory and is never proven. Unlike the Prime Number Theorem, which will absolutely and forever be true, it is still possible, albeit very, very, very, very, very unlikely, that the theory of evolution by natural and sexual selection may one day turn out to be false. But then again, it is also possible, albeit very, very, very, very, very unlikely, that monkeys will fly out of my ass tomorrow. In my judgment, both events are about equally likely.

Namelesss
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Namelesss » February 21st, 2018, 1:20 am

Chosen-one wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 4:30 am
Everything is belief. Science belief that can repeated in some cases.
No, everything is not 'belief', any more than everything is blue.

Karpel Tunnel
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Karpel Tunnel » February 21st, 2018, 8:08 am

Namelesss wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 1:20 am
Chosen-one wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 4:30 am
Everything is belief. Science belief that can repeated in some cases.
No, everything is not 'belief', any more than everything is blue.
In philosophy, generally, any assertion one holds to be the case, to be true, is a belief. What we believe in. Which is why one of the most common meta-models of knowledge is that it is justified true beliefs. In common usage belief sometimes means beliefs that are not gained via deduction, induction. But in a philosophy forum it makes sense to refer to anything one beliefs as a belief and then to work on the epistemological issues - read: justifications - for those beliefs. Some people think this means all beliefs become on the same level, but this is not the case, nor is it at all in philosophy, where one looks at justification. To refer to beliefs based on scientific research as beliefs does not make them the same as beliefs based on throwing darts at maps or 'because my guru said it' or any other methodology for arriving at what we believe.

Steve3007
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Steve3007 » February 21st, 2018, 10:38 am

Chili. I broadly agree with that quote that you posted. But I'd say a large part of the problem is simply semantic. Whether they're scientists or not, people don't always use words in unambiguous and consistent ways, especially when talking "off the cuff".

As you've said, the concept of proof in the mathematical sense is not applicable to the discoveries of science. In that sense, "proof" means the demonstration of a tautology - something that is true by definition of the terminology being used and whose demonstration therefore requires no empirical observations. For example, the proof that the square-root of 2 is an irrational number requires no observations. It only requires definitions of numbers, the square-root function and what it means for a number to be irrational.

But "proof" is not always used in that sense. For example, it is sometimes used as an approximate synonym for "test", as in the old saying "the proof of the pudding is in the eating". When used in that sense, it means the testing of a hypothesis by empirical observation, and is applicable in science.

Chili
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Chili » February 21st, 2018, 11:34 am

NDT said that whatever you may believe, science is "true". That's even further "off the cuff" than speaking of "proof".

Karpel Tunnel
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Karpel Tunnel » February 21st, 2018, 12:26 pm

Steve3007 wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 10:38 am
But "proof" is not always used in that sense. For example, it is sometimes used as an approximate synonym for "test", as in the old saying "the proof of the pudding is in the eating". When used in that sense, it means the testing of a hypothesis by empirical observation, and is applicable in science.
But not within science, so why introduce it? IOW I think it respects both science and philosophy better to not use it in relation to science even if in everyday speech it might be applicable.

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Greta
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Greta » February 21st, 2018, 8:37 pm

Chili wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 11:34 am
NDT said that whatever you may believe, science is "true". That's even further "off the cuff" than speaking of "proof".
Again, NDGT is not speaking at a philosophical level. He is trying to educate creationists, fundamentalists and other science-deniers that there are basic things in reality that have been "proved" and are "true" insofar as our physical lives are concerned.

For instance, one cannot just choose to believe the Earth is 6,000 years old because a priest hundreds of years ago made a naive addition of the the ages of the Bible's characters. The "truth" is in the fossil records and the methods of analysis. However, we could be ultimately mistaken in some ways about every aspect of our existence due to the limits of our evolved perspectives.

So science provides relative and provisional truths, and these are extremely powerful, logical and inspiring even if our inherent limitations means that our learning can never be deemed "absolute truth".

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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Karpel Tunnel » February 22nd, 2018, 6:16 am

Greta wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 8:37 pm
Again, NDGT is not speaking at a philosophical level. He is trying to educate creationists, fundamentalists and other science-deniers that there are basic things in reality that have been "proved" and are "true" insofar as our physical lives are concerned.
The title of the thread is
Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!
So I cannot see how is intention is simply or even mainly what you say it is. If one follows his links, one sees that his aims are at a broad heuristic to not believe anything, including things that have some evidence but not enough. (his version of what the word belief means).

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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Greta » February 22nd, 2018, 6:53 am

Of course he advocates non belief. Why would you expect a scientist to advocate blind belief over the gathering of evidence? That's what he's talking about - taking evidence seriously, prioritising it above beliefs that lack any evidentiary backing.

Just because NdGT's broadly advocating non belief doesn't mean he's seeking belief's actual abolition. He is very much a live and let live type, which is one of the characteristics I like about the man.

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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Namelesss » February 25th, 2018, 2:55 am

Karpel Tunnel wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 8:08 am
Namelesss wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 1:20 am

No, everything is not 'belief', any more than everything is blue.
In philosophy, generally, any assertion one holds to be the case, to be true, is a belief. What we believe in.

I am interested in who, exactly, is this "philosophy, generally" with whom you identify with your "we".
I have found/experienced/Know otherwise.
Personal experience seems to supersede the thoughts of others, no matter how many.
No 'philosopher' would assert that a 'consensus' defines Reality.
Which is why one of the most common meta-models of knowledge is that it is justified true beliefs.

Ugh, this again.
Unsupportable logically/philosophically or scientifically.
The flatness of the planet was a meta-model, once.
Such nonsense can be easily demolished, logically, experientially, psychologically, scientifically, metaphysically...
I will reinsert (here) my definition of a 'belief' as a pathologically symptomatic infection of 'thought/ego', spread and caught like any virus/parasite/malware.
The strain makes no difference at all in the symptomology.
If you would like to learn more, something a bit more 'up-to-date' than Aristotle, just ask.
If you think yourself capable of refuting anything that I offer, after understanding it, I would welcome your attempt. *__-
I don't need some rehashed thoughts of someone millennia ago vs anyone whose philosophy is tempered with cutting edge (and beyond) science.
I offer the findings of my own original studies and experiments; here's the hammer!
Please make the honest attempt to understand before swinging, though.
In common usage belief sometimes means...

Yeah, well... (heh)
Thanks Mr. Library!
I think it marvelous that this place has it's own Library!
Should I ever need to depend on someone else's experience... *__-
read: justifications - for those beliefs.

Psychology, not philosophy.
Emotional 'logic', not 'rational logic'.
There are three main symptoms of an infection of 'belief';
First, the host is constantly forced to 'defend' his (self) 'beliefs'.
As a 'belief' is an infection of the ego, who and what you 'think/feel' yourself to be, you identify with the 'belief'. A 'self' defensive mechanism in the evolution of the 'belief'; the 'belief 'feeling' threatened is the host feeling threatened. And he defends, accordingly.

No one ever deliberately harmed another unless he hosts a 'belief'.
(They are insanity)

Second, the host is constantly compelled to 'justify/feed' the 'belief'.
That's all your 'true justification' is, a psychological imbalance, crazy justifying itself.
So, in a philosophical/scientific setting, I'm tentatively willing to dismiss it as a 'lesser' theory.

The Third major sign that we are dealing with a 'belief' infection is that the host is compelled to propagate/spread the 'belief' to... well, everyone who is not already infected with that particular strain! (see; politics... see; religion...)

When these three major signs occur, we know that it is an emotional, rather than an intellectual situation, and can become explosive.
We know that we are not going to get rational discourse on the subject of the host's belief.
The symptoms will appear. They are well documented.

A 'belief' infection will also inhibit cognitive and intellectual ability.
The more severe the infection, well, read the headlines...

So, there it is for your critical examination, and here I am, in real time, to answer your criticism.
(Unlike the thinkers of antiquity being unable to answer Our critical questions!)

Sound fair?
*__-

Namelesss
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Namelesss » February 25th, 2018, 3:01 am

Karpel Tunnel wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 8:08 am
Namelesss wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 1:20 am

No, everything is not 'belief', any more than everything is blue.
In philosophy, generally, any assertion one holds to be the case, to be true, is a belief.
How might you classify the experience/Knowledge of one tentatively accepting all assertions as Truth! (and true, and false), all at the same moment?

Namelesss
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Re: Belief (not just religious belief) ought to be abolished!

Post by Namelesss » February 25th, 2018, 3:06 am

That "one" slipped through. It can be ignored.
Thanks *__-

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