Monday, September 8, 2008

Convincing indicators of existence of "God," a scale

Hi all,

To whoever is interested, I was wondering about creating a scale of how convincing an idea was as "proof" of "God's" existence, whoever she is.

As an example, Phil and I were talking last night about the idea of the "hyper agency-detection-device" , HADD, (note the three hyphenated words are a single noun). The person who wrote about that idea was trying to "prove" god's existence. Phil was reading this author who was from Calvin College. The idea of HADD is about our evolutionary progress to the present moment where we concieve of god as existing.

Phil and I both were not completly persuaded that HADD really proved God's existence but only our perception.

I speak for myself now: This idea would be a 2 or 3 on a scale of 0 to 10 with 10 being strong evidence of God's existence.

Any other ideas that people might want to put on such a scale? Is it useful?

I get back to experience, that is, experiencing a sense of the holy via the HADD is part of my life. The experience convinces me of God's existence, regardless of the means that the experience comes into my mind. Is experience scalable or too subjective?

Just a start of a blogg if there are any out there that wish to comment.


Mike said...

I'll see your "shallow thinking" and raise you a knee-jerk reaction.

First, what is the supposed argument that deduces the existence of God from the supposition of a HADD? It seems to me that the idea of a HADD rather undercuts the existence of God - i.e., we are deceived when we think we experience God, and we only think we have experienced her because it was evolutionarily advantageous for us to perceive agency (lest we err the other way and be eaten by a stealthy agent).

Second, from our discussion a couple weeks ago, I'll note that I buy the HADD as at least a partial explanation of our attribution of agency to events. But I think there are other factors as well (e.g., the lack of other examples of cause-effect relationships as humans tried to develop an understanding of our world, development of social and tribal bonds, etc.) But this raises the question for me if there are forces in the opposite direction. That is, are there / were there any evolutionary advantages to not mistakenly attributing agency to events?

Finally, here's my favorite "argument" that there is a God: Consider the statement "If this statement is true, then God exists." The statement can't be false, because it doesn't assert anything if it is false. So the statement is true. Thus God exists. QED. I rate this a 0 on Chuck's scale.

Chuck F. said...

Shallow thinking? I guess my head is too thick to get it. Oh Well.

In my recent "experience" I, while looking at the Milky Way, was realizing that I was awe struck and grateful as if to an "agent" who "made" this beauty. I want to touch base with one who feels like that without the concept of "agent." I have a person in mind to whom I will pop such a question.

Awe was due to my present knowledge that the "maker" I believe made it, did not "make it" in any way that I can understand, no hands, no machines, no mechanisms and etc. It is so old, so complex and so beautiful that my mind takes an orgastic leap of joy for a moment. (probably not a word but you know what I mean.)

Grateful because I get to experience this and enjoy it. (aren't we all grateful for orgasms? Sorry if sexual references offend but we are irreverent, aren't we?)

Joy is one of those things that seems to lack agency. Is that our source of "imagining" a God?


Then there is beauty. Hmmm, all subjective stuff.

Even subjectivity, Hmmm. Do animals have it too?

I guess I keep wondering if the attempts to find the "god spot" in our brain, or the understanding that comes from the "cognitive origins of religion" or attempts to atribute "spiritual" senses to evolutionary processes are attempts at fitting reality into our desires for a digital universe that can be understood as 1s and 0s instead of the infinite variations of analog? (oh, come on, something had to offend somewhere in there someplace!)

Don't get me wrong. The persuit of knowledge is one thing I hope we never give up. It's just my damnable demand to decide on didactic truth from a foolishly finite, functional, mind meld.

If you can make sense of that, tell me what I said. I think I just fell off the shallow shelf in the lake and am drowning in the deep end. I suspect that the next blog by mike may be my saving agency.

Mike said...

Hey everyone! I think Chuck is speaking in tongues! We need an interpreter! Quick!

Ginger said...

It sounds to me that Chuck has faith and just doesn't want to admit it.

Chuck F. said...

Faith, What is that anyway? I once thought it was a body of "knowledge" but then realize that calling it such a thing was an oxymoron. Being moronic, however, I did not give the oxy up for a long time. It kept me clean.

Now, having given up the oxy, I feel less moronic but seem to be in the muddy waters of not knowing. OH, NOW I SEE. But wait, faith was supposed to be "not seeing" HELLLLPPPPP

Speaking in tongues, NOT.

Speaking in oxys and morons, maybe.

what the h. I giveup