Author Topic: Basic idolatry  (Read 6856 times)

SomeoneWrites

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #45 on: December 30, 2020, 09:57:55 PM »
It is not that simple:

I'm sorry, but it really is.

Ask around at any secular institution hosting professionals who teach and research evolution. They do believe in teleology.
In my experience and study, not in regards to Evolution, in and of itself. 

They just don't publish it in their academic research journals. This would not be socially acceptable.
It's not a matter of socially acceptable, it's a matter of appropriate subject matter for the scientific method. 


You have to get to know them to learn it, and how they relate it to their profession.

Because of this, evolution (& also, biology in general) has a crypto-teleology attached to it.

Sorry, this is too much hearsay/conspiracy for me to accept as evidence.  It's also in direct contradiction with my own experience and study.  People can apply their own teleology - Theistic Evolution and Eugenics - but these things are not prescribed by evolution. 

So you can't relieve yourself of the problem of teleology by endorsing evolution. The questions remain; there are a variety of answers.

This statement misrepresents my position.  Evolution itself doesn't have a teleology.  It does not prescribe things.  It does not present an "ought" so to speak.  It's a natural process like the water cycle or plate tectonics. 
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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #46 on: December 30, 2020, 10:31:02 PM »
There is no "Evolution itself" once you add observers, analysts, etc.

Also, it is not just my experience; you've probably come across comments circulated along the lines of "If you want to find godless academics, go look in the Anthropology department". This is because in comparison, biology departments can be expected to have more mainline Protestants, Catholics, and Eastern Orthodox in them. There is no conspiracy about it. (E.g. Francis Collins is public figure and his writings on religion are not a conspiracy.)

"It's not a matter of socially acceptable, it's a matter of appropriate subject matter for the scientific method."

There is no single scientific method, rather, there are a variety of such methods. Most which can be traced back in their lineage to Kant's influence. (Being raised LCMS is likely to train you in Kantian thought patterns, and more so than for your typical US child.)

Prior to about 1950ish you are more likely to encounter teleology in respected academic writings concerning evolution. There is nothing about the topic of evolution per se which makes it incompatible with teleology. The rules changed. They sometimes do. And if you don't believe me, read The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. (Which by the way, was resisted due to its Hegelian character, which is contrary to most dominant scientific methods.)
« Last Edit: December 30, 2020, 10:43:18 PM by Commencement2020 »

SomeoneWrites

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #47 on: December 30, 2020, 10:55:41 PM »
There is no "Evolution itself" once you add observers, analysts, etc.
There is in the same sense of Tectonics itself. 



Also, it is not just my experience; you've probably come across comments circulated along the lines of "If you want to find godless academics, go look in the Anthropology department". This is because in comparison, biology departments can be expected to have more mainline Protestants, Catholics, and Eastern Orthodox in them. There is no conspiracy about it. (E.g. Francis Collins is public figure and his writings on religion are not a conspiracy.)
  In the sense that there's probably more Christians that accept evolution than don't, I'm with you there.  They have their own teleologies. 


"It's not a matter of socially acceptable, it's a matter of appropriate subject matter for the scientific method."

There is no single scientific method, rather, there are a variety of such methods. Most which can be traced back in their lineage to Kant's influence. (Being raised LCMS is likely to train you in Kantian thought patterns, and more so than for your typical US child.)
You're talking about what's going to show up in papers.  I'm saying that it's not a matter of socially acceptable when talking about God and plate tectonics.  It's methodological naturalism, in brief. 


Prior to about 1950ish you are more likely to encounter teleology in respected academic writings concerning evolution. There is nothing about the topic of evolution per se which makes it incompatible with teleology. The rules changed. They sometimes do. And if you don't believe me, read The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. (Which by the way, was resisted due to its Hegelian character, which is contrary to most dominant scientific methods.)

I'm sure plenty of people applied a teleology in academic writings.  I know Newton did.  I'm saying star formation doesn't have a teleology in and of itself.  Neither does the water cycle.  Neither does Evolution.  Neither does plate tectonics.  One can apply their own and run from there. 
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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #48 on: December 30, 2020, 11:54:40 PM »
With respect to methodological naturalism, no method is assumed to be perfect. So you can call it error if you like, but the teleology bleeds into their work anyway. Methodological naturalism, then, is a goal and a standard, but it is not perfectly achieved. (And some like it that way, even if it is not socially acceptable--and will socialize about it in an honest way if they feel safe enough.)

There isn't even a law of gravity itself. If you want to know why, read Kuhn. (The "thing-in-itself" is a Kantian concept. Something else you can thank your Missourian heritage for. Had you grown up Episcopalian that thought process may not have been part of your upbringing and, if so may have been harder to acquire later on in life.)

(I forgot to add in Jews to the list earlier.)
« Last Edit: December 31, 2020, 12:05:47 AM by Commencement2020 »

SomeoneWrites

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #49 on: December 31, 2020, 01:26:09 AM »
With respect to methodological naturalism, no method is assumed to be perfect.

I don't claim it to be error free.  I do personally think it's the best way understand the world.


So you can call it error if you like, but the teleology bleeds into their work anyway. Methodological naturalism, then, is a goal and a standard, but it is not perfectly achieved. (And some like it that way, even if it is not socially acceptable--and will socialize about it in an honest way if they feel safe enough.)
I think that you describe it as bleeding into their work is more to my point.  And to the original point, there is still no conflict between the Theory of Evolution and Trans-gendered ideologies. 

There isn't even a law of gravity itself. If you want to know why, read Kuhn. (The "thing-in-itself" is a Kantian concept. Something else you can thank your Missourian heritage for. Had you grown up Episcopalian that thought process may not have been part of your upbringing and, if so may have been harder to acquire later on in life.)

(I forgot to add in Jews to the list earlier.)
 

I appreciate this, and I've poked more into Kuhn since joining this forum. By the same token, I invite you to read about teleology in Biology. 

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David Garner

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #50 on: December 31, 2020, 08:04:07 AM »
There is no ad-hominem. 

The crux has been about the connection between trans-gender ideologies and the theory of evolution.  They remain perfectly compatible.  No trans-gender ideology suggests and end to reproduction.  Evolution describes the diversity of life and the mechanics which contribute that.  It's that simple.

HOW does evolution "describe the diversity of life and the mechanics which contribute (to) that?"

You are trying to gloss past what I've said by pretending 1) there must be an "end to reproduction" suggested in order to undermine reproductive capacity, and 2) in any event, reproduction has nothing to do with evolution because it is all about diversity of life.

Of course, both of those statements are simple.  That's in large part because they ignore literally everything I've said so you can present yourself as being the smart guy in the room, an illness that has infected internet atheists since the internet was popularized, but which you've managed to avoid until this pandemic apparently weakened everyone's immunity.  Your statements are simple.  And they are wrong as a result.

You have presented assertions without argument, much less evidence.  Well and good.  To quote one whose model of argumentation you are now deciding to follow:

"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence."
       -- Christopher Hitchens

I simply deny them.  Have a good day.
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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #51 on: December 31, 2020, 08:51:50 AM »
There is no ad-hominem. 

The crux has been about the connection between trans-gender ideologies and the theory of evolution.  They remain perfectly compatible.  No trans-gender ideology suggests and end to reproduction.  Evolution describes the diversity of life and the mechanics which contribute that.  It's that simple.

HOW does evolution "describe the diversity of life and the mechanics which contribute (to) that?"

You are trying to gloss past what I've said by pretending 1) there must be an "end to reproduction" suggested in order to undermine reproductive capacity, and 2) in any event, reproduction has nothing to do with evolution because it is all about diversity of life.

Of course, both of those statements are simple.  That's in large part because they ignore literally everything I've said so you can present yourself as being the smart guy in the room, an illness that has infected internet atheists since the internet was popularized, but which you've managed to avoid until this pandemic apparently weakened everyone's immunity.  Your statements are simple.  And they are wrong as a result.

You have presented assertions without argument, much less evidence.  Well and good.  To quote one whose model of argumentation you are now deciding to follow:

"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence."
       -- Christopher Hitchens

I simply deny them.  Have a good day.




Since you've read up on evolution, then I know you understand how Natural Selection, mutation, gene flow work and the absolute necessity of reproduction is in the shifting of alleles. 
Now it is up to YOU to demonstrate that transgendered ideology is incompatible with this. 
As long as the transgendered movement recognizes reproduction as a viable part of life, then your position doesn't stand.  I can't prove what a position doesn't say. 

That being said. 

1) You imply I'm giving an ad hominem even I've only addressed your arguments.
- Then you insult me
2) You say I don't provide evidence, even though I've given simple and direct points.
- Then continue by not demonstrating yours.

Adding "have a good day" doesn't really help or make the exchange any better.  The juxtaposition kind of makes it sound worse.




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David Garner

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #52 on: December 31, 2020, 09:08:07 AM »
Since you've read up on evolution, then I know you understand how Natural Selection, mutation, gene flow work and the absolute necessity of reproduction is in the shifting of alleles. 
Now it is up to YOU to demonstrate that transgendered ideology is incompatible with this. 
As long as the transgendered movement recognizes reproduction as a viable part of life, then your position doesn't stand.  I can't prove what a position doesn't say. 

That being said. 

1) You imply I'm giving an ad hominem even I've only addressed your arguments.
- Then you insult me
2) You say I don't provide evidence, even though I've given simple and direct points.
- Then continue by not demonstrating yours.

Adding "have a good day" doesn't really help or make the exchange any better.  The juxtaposition kind of makes it sound worse.

I have, and precisely so.  You have dismissed them without providing even a counter argument, only bare assertions.  You do the same above.

For example, you say "the absolute necessity of reproduction is in the shifting of alleles."  So what?  Reproduction is still the sine qua non of evolution.  Without it, alleles cannot change over time, genetic mutations do not happen in a way that leads to propagation of the species, etc.  Reproduction is not incidental to evolution, it is foundational.  If one of our shared ancestor species had in some way acted to disrupt the reproductive process, we would not be here at all to pretend there is such a thing as women with penises. 

You seem to be taking my words as saying "if some men date some 'women with penises' instead of marrying biological women and having babies, no evolution can take place."  That is clearly not what I am saying.  What I am saying is when transgender zealots attempt to erase the biological distinctions between men and women, they act inconsistently with what evolution actually does.

You nit picked the word "goals" even though I gave a caveat to that in my first post, so I'm struggling to word it in a way that won't cause you to do the same here.  So call it what you will -- goals, aims, telos, unguided process with absolutely nothing that might suggest any such a thing as God exists -- whatever.  Evolution works through the reproductive process.  That is how alleles shift.  It is why genetic mutations matter.  If my genes mutate and I pass them on to no one, there is no evolution.  So if you deny that biological male-ness and female-ness are things, which many, many transgender ideologues do, then you deny the very means by which evolution works.  That is, your ideology is inconsistent with evolution.  The discussion about female sports, deconstruction of family units, etc., all centers around the truth that transgender ideologues in fact deny what I suggest they deny.  Which is why your dismissal of them is frustrating.

Finally, I apologize if my words came across as insulting.  I will say that is a high level of sensitivity from someone who accused me of not recognizing things and therefore speaking inaccurately, posing side discussions and tangents, and arguing against straw men.  I'll work on my own presentation and frustration with you.  I would suggest you attempt to diagnose the height of your horse and descend somewhat.
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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #53 on: December 31, 2020, 09:17:35 AM »
I wasn't trying to say that someone who believes in evolution can't account for transgendered people or their ideology in the sense you seem to be responding to. What is true is that whether you believe in literal creationism, theistic evolution, or unguided evolution you have to recognize reality and purpose in the difference between male and female at the physical, biological level. The idea that one's self-understanding of one's perceived "gender" is what really defines them, not their chromosomes and body parts, or that male and female are not a binary but a spectrum, defy the Bible and evolutionary biology. The reproductives system has purpose in the same sense that the digestive system or eyes and ears have purpose.

 

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #54 on: December 31, 2020, 10:21:51 AM »

I have, and precisely so.  You have dismissed them without providing even a counter argument, only bare assertions.  You do the same above.

For example, you say "the absolute necessity of reproduction is in the shifting of alleles."  So what?  Reproduction is still the sine qua non of evolution.  Without it, alleles cannot change over time, genetic mutations do not happen in a way that leads to propagation of the species, etc.  Reproduction is not incidental to evolution, it is foundational.  If one of our shared ancestor species had in some way acted to disrupt the reproductive process, we would not be here at all to pretend there is such a thing as women with penises. 

This is strange because this is the point I'm making.  I even called it necessary.  You called it foundational.  We agree.
And you understand how a species can continue on as long as there is reproduction.  Not every individual has to reproduce for the species to survive.  You understand there are traits that are beneficial to a species that may not be beneficial to an individual.  Until such time as the trans movement ex's out all reproduction, then there is a compatibility. 



You seem to be taking my words as saying "if some men date some 'women with penises' instead of marrying biological women and having babies, no evolution can take place."  That is clearly not what I am saying.  What I am saying is when transgender zealots attempt to erase the biological distinctions between men and women, they act inconsistently with what evolution actually does.
No, I'm saying they don't act inconsistently with what evolution actually does.  You need to demonstrate that evolution is entirely within the individual.


You nit picked the word "goals" even though I gave a caveat to that in my first post, so I'm struggling to word it in a way that won't cause you to do the same here.  So call it what you will -- goals, aims, telos, unguided process with absolutely nothing that might suggest any such a thing as God exists -- whatever.  Evolution works through the reproductive process.  That is how alleles shift.  It is why genetic mutations matter.  If my genes mutate and I pass them on to no one, there is no evolution.  So if you deny that biological male-ness and female-ness are things, which many, many transgender ideologues do, then you deny the very means by which evolution works.  That is, your ideology is inconsistent with evolution.
https://www.britannica.com/science/gene-flow   This is part of that allele thing.  And you'll notice it deals with populations.  I said this upstream. 

  The discussion about female sports, deconstruction of family units, etc., all centers around the truth that transgender ideologues in fact deny what I suggest they deny.  Which is why your dismissal of them is frustrating.
I'm not dismissing them at all.  I said they were side topics and I still believe that they are.  I'm talking about transgender ideology and evolution.  I'm probably more on your side than you think about the other areas. 

Finally, I apologize if my words came across as insulting.  I will say that is a high level of sensitivity from someone who accused me of not recognizing things and therefore speaking inaccurately, posing side discussions and tangents, and arguing against straw men.  I'll work on my own presentation and frustration with you.  I would suggest you attempt to diagnose the height of your horse and descend somewhat.
I apologize if my tone is offputting and/or comes across condescending.


I would think if you are in error, I'm allowed to say that. 
I would think if your error is a strawman, I'm allowed to say that
I would think if you don't appear to recognize something, I'm allowed to say that. 

Now, if I said "you want to appear as the smart guy in the room" - now It looks like I'm speaking at your motives and personality. 

I would like to point out that you don't appear to recognize that's what you're doing when you say things like that.  I do not think my responses are an equivalent in that regard. 

All the same, I'll re-examine my tone and try harder.  I apologize in advance if I've already blown it in this exchange.
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pearson

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #55 on: December 31, 2020, 10:36:29 AM »

I wasn't trying to say that someone who believes in evolution can't account for transgendered people or their ideology in the sense you seem to be responding to. What is true is that whether you believe in literal creationism, theistic evolution, or unguided evolution you have to recognize reality and purpose in the difference between male and female at the physical, biological level. The idea that one's self-understanding of one's perceived "gender" is what really defines them, not their chromosomes and body parts, or that male and female are not a binary but a spectrum, defy the Bible and evolutionary biology. The reproductives system has purpose in the same sense that the digestive system or eyes and ears have purpose.


This all makes perfect sense -- but that term purpose can be elusive.  If you mean by purpose something like "function," that certainly applies to all the biological systems you mention.  But if you mean something like "intention" -- as in a deliberate arrangement -- then that is doubtful.

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #56 on: December 31, 2020, 11:39:09 AM »

I wasn't trying to say that someone who believes in evolution can't account for transgendered people or their ideology in the sense you seem to be responding to. What is true is that whether you believe in literal creationism, theistic evolution, or unguided evolution you have to recognize reality and purpose in the difference between male and female at the physical, biological level. The idea that one's self-understanding of one's perceived "gender" is what really defines them, not their chromosomes and body parts, or that male and female are not a binary but a spectrum, defy the Bible and evolutionary biology. The reproductives system has purpose in the same sense that the digestive system or eyes and ears have purpose.


This all makes perfect sense -- but that term purpose can be elusive.  If you mean by purpose something like "function," that certainly applies to all the biological systems you mention.  But if you mean something like "intention" -- as in a deliberate arrangement -- then that is doubtful.

Tom Pearson
It seems to me nearly that nearly everything in evolutionary biology ascribes purpose to body and parts or animals traits. Why do deer have antlers? In order to... Why do chameleons change color? In order to... It always comes across to me as begging the question a little bit, but it is the standard m.o. in evolutionary biology to explain why things came to be the way they are in terms of purpose. It helped them survive and reproduce. The problem is that the evolutionary biologist MUST assume his conclusions. It isn't a question of whether this or that trait serves the purpose of survival and reproduction. It is only a question of how. Calling it purpose in terms of mere function simply kicks the can down the road. Purpose is what distinguishes function from dysfunction. 

As a creationist, I can say that the birds have that color pattern because it is a cool color pattern that God liked. The pattern's purpose was simply to please and glorify the Creator and may or may not have anything whatsoever to do with survival or reproduction. But the evolutionary biologist can't say that. In either case, though, there is a purpose.   

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #57 on: December 31, 2020, 11:58:47 AM »
This all makes perfect sense -- but that term purpose can be elusive.  If you mean by purpose something like "function," that certainly applies to all the biological systems you mention.  But if you mean something like "intention" -- as in a deliberate arrangement -- then that is doubtful.
It goes back to what I said earlier--"aim" and "purpose" might imply the specific intention of an agent, especially to those who insist that there is no such thing evident in nature. However, teleology really just means that something has a telos, a general end or final cause toward which it tends, which should not be controversial. Even Richard Dawkins admitted that "Biology is the study of complicated things that give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose."
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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #58 on: December 31, 2020, 12:03:43 PM »

I wasn't trying to say that someone who believes in evolution can't account for transgendered people or their ideology in the sense you seem to be responding to. What is true is that whether you believe in literal creationism, theistic evolution, or unguided evolution you have to recognize reality and purpose in the difference between male and female at the physical, biological level. The idea that one's self-understanding of one's perceived "gender" is what really defines them, not their chromosomes and body parts, or that male and female are not a binary but a spectrum, defy the Bible and evolutionary biology. The reproductives system has purpose in the same sense that the digestive system or eyes and ears have purpose.


This all makes perfect sense -- but that term purpose can be elusive.  If you mean by purpose something like "function," that certainly applies to all the biological systems you mention.  But if you mean something like "intention" -- as in a deliberate arrangement -- then that is doubtful.

Tom Pearson
It seems to me nearly that nearly everything in evolutionary biology ascribes purpose to body and parts or animals traits. Why do deer have antlers? In order to... Why do chameleons change color? In order to... It always comes across to me as begging the question a little bit, but it is the standard m.o. in evolutionary biology to explain why things came to be the way they are in terms of purpose. It helped them survive and reproduce. The problem is that the evolutionary biologist MUST assume his conclusions. It isn't a question of whether this or that trait serves the purpose of survival and reproduction. It is only a question of how. Calling it purpose in terms of mere function simply kicks the can down the road. Purpose is what distinguishes function from dysfunction. 

As a creationist, I can say that the birds have that color pattern because it is a cool color pattern that God liked. The pattern's purpose was simply to please and glorify the Creator and may or may not have anything whatsoever to do with survival or reproduction. But the evolutionary biologist can't say that. In either case, though, there is a purpose.

That purpose, for birds, includes enhancing the ability to spot like kind - including the difference between males and females of like kind - and reproduce with them.  It also, in many, assist defense - particularly for reproducing females and then spending the most time on the nesting eggs of the pair of birds.  More subtle colorings promote identity of pairs - and many birds are monogamous and mate for life.  Kind of like God's design of humans except for garishly hued males...

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Re: Basic idolatry
« Reply #59 on: December 31, 2020, 01:37:47 PM »

It seems to me nearly that nearly everything in evolutionary biology ascribes purpose to body and parts or animals traits. Why do deer have antlers? In order to... Why do chameleons change color? In order to... It always comes across to me as begging the question a little bit, but it is the standard m.o. in evolutionary biology to explain why things came to be the way they are in terms of purpose.


I may be misreading you here, Pr. Speckhard (and these are pretty dense subjects, anyway), but it seems that your argument implicates a traditional issue regarding explanations, particularly explanations in natural science.  Generally, there are two kinds: causal explanations and descriptive explanations.  Obviously, causal explanations want to track a sequence of causal factors that produce the phenomena in question.  Causal explanations in natural science are typically speculative and provisional; we are regularly discovering new causal relationships in the natural world.  Descriptive explanations, on the other hand, are offering accounts of how things are actually performing (or, perhaps, how things present themselves as actually performing).

So when you say, "Why do deer have antlers? In order to... Why do chameleons change color? In order to..." you may be suggesting a causal explanation ("Deer have antlers in order to defend themselves because of evolutionary genetic mutations, or because of God's will. . ."), or you may be suggesting a descriptive explanation ("Deer have antlers in order to defend themselves, and we can describe how those antlers are effective in doing so, as follows:. . .").  The difference between causal explanations and descriptive explanations is that the latter do not require any causal mechanisms, while the former certainly do.  Evolutionary theory traffics in both kinds of explanation; but when evolution conjures up causal explanations, they are, as usual, speculative and provisional.

One other (and, I hope, relevant) thing:  descriptive explanations are becoming more prominent in natural science these days, largely in an effort to avoid the controversies that arise as a result of the speculative and provisional nature of causal explanations.  Brain Ellis has written a very nifty little book that addresses this development, The Philosophy of Nature: A Guide to the New Essentialism.  Ellis charts the movement of scientists and philosophers of science who are, in part, harkening back to an Aristotelian essentialism, by viewing the dynamics of the natural world as a reflection of intrinsic, "essential" qualities of the natural world itself (and, thus, not "caused" by extrinsic, "outside" forces or a metaphysical "order of things").  I am sympathetic toward this sort of essentialism, and its tilt in the direction of descriptive explanations.  This type of essentialism, and the concurrent reliance on descriptive explanations, are what evolutionary theory does best.  It's when evolutionary theory begins serving up causal explanations that evolution gets into trouble.

Tom Pearson