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Religion Forum => Religion Forum => Topic started by: Sci Fi Fan on November 05, 2012, 01:16:33 PM

Title: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 05, 2012, 01:16:33 PM
You've all likely heard of it: the universe is ordered and has just the right makeup and physical laws for life to exist.  Ergo, it must have been intelligently designed.

OK, let's analyze this commonly used argument, one that even Sir Isaac Newton adhered to:

1. The argument simply advocates deism, not any specific religion.  There is no conceivable justification for leaping from "the universe was intelligently designed" to "the universe was intelligently designed on X day, in Y days, by Z creator, for A purpose in B exact circumstances".

2. The argument actually leads to the conclusion that the watchmaker is imperfect and impersonal.  After all, if you came across a fabulously designed watch, you would assume that the watchmaker was highly skilled.  But if you came across a watch with serious imperfections, the rule of parsimony would dictate that the watchmaker messed up, not that the watchmaker was an omnipotent deity and that, through a ridiculous convoluted narrative, the watch broke itself due to no fault of the watchmaker.  To state otherwise would be to presuppose that the watchmaker must be omnipotent, which sounds like blatant and unjustified bias, and it is.

3. Here's the kicker: the exact same logic can be applied to the watchmaker.  If the universe is complex -> it must have been designed is a valid logical argument, then the watchmaker is complex -> the watchmaker must have been designed is just as true, if not moreso.  This leads to an infinite regression, which does nothing but make the problem more complex with every backpeddle.

If we admit that, logically, there must be a First Cause (unless if we include some sort of time-loop, which discounts God entirely), wouldn't Occam's Razor suggest that we just leave the universe, which which clearly exists, as the First Cause, rather than add in an infinitely complex variable (God) into the equation that solves nothing, and actually makes the question larger?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 05, 2012, 04:40:03 PM
I've experienced both God, and pure evil, on a supernatural level. So for me it isn't theoretical conjecture. Nor is it complex.

I don't go around trying to change people or convince them that I'm right. But if anyone wants to know God, all they have to do is ask. He'll show up.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Yawn on November 05, 2012, 05:02:00 PM
That's exactly right.  Belief in God only comes through a personal experience.  I've also come to believe that you cannot convince another human being through reason.

I could tell a non-believer some of my personal experiences that PROVE the existence of both God and the "dark side", but they simply wouldn't believe it. For me, I have NO DOUBT that we have a Creator and this is only one stage of life (or human "evolution").

I have a friend with a terminal illness.  I explained it to her like this:

Imagine you're in the womb with your twin and that "world" is all you know, but you both know that in your own time you will both have to leave your world (the womb).

One of you leaves (birth). Now, on the other side, there is no way you can communicate to your twin what the "other side" is like.  You cannot describe "light." You cannot describe the vastness of this new world you've passed on to, to your twin still stuck in the only world you both once knew (the womb).  You cannot describe these HUGE Creatures that look like you but much bigger (doctors, nurses, mom). To your twin, you're gone forever and soon, your twin believes, they'll be gone too. But once they've "passed on" to the new world, they suddenly understand how restricted their comfortable world (in the womb) was, and how "passing on" was necessary for all human beings to fully evolve.

This life is short, and preparation for the Life to come. Yeshua said, "Fear not little flock, it is My Father's good pleasure to give you the Kingdom."
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 06, 2012, 06:28:51 AM
I was expecting more logical, scientific responses.  You know, sticking with the whole "fact based" premise of the board.  Do you think "personal experience" is sufficient to convict a defendant in the court of law?  Sufficient to test and design a rocket going into outer space?  Sufficient to write a solid essay for your middle school teacher?  Nope.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 06, 2012, 06:45:39 AM
I was expecting more logical, scientific responses.  You know, sticking with the whole "fact based" premise of the board.  Do you think "personal experience" is sufficient to convict a defendant in the court of law?  Sufficient to test and design a rocket going into outer space?  Sufficient to write a solid essay for your middle school teacher?  Nope.

My fact based response would be..............that you are a pain in the ass. :wink:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 06, 2012, 06:52:35 AM
My fact based response would be..............that you are a pain in the ass. :wink:

That I make a logical argument and expect you to do the same, rather that appealing to your irrational "gut feeling"?

Then you are welcome.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 06, 2012, 06:58:29 AM
That I make a logical argument and expect you to do the same, rather that appealing to your irrational "gut feeling"?

Then you are welcome.

I can't explain God in scientific terms. Although the big bang theory and evolution also rely on miracles. The only part they leave out is God.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 06, 2012, 07:02:24 AM
I can't explain God in scientific terms.

In other words, you can't substantiate him through objective, logical observation and analysis.

Ergo, you can't support his existence.  So I'll assume that you don't expect us to enact public legislation based on something that is basically your personal opinion.

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Although the big bang theory and evolution also rely on miracles.

No, they don't.  If you actually understood the elementary principles of the theories, you would know this.  But since you don't, you really shouldn't run your mouth about them.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 06, 2012, 07:15:07 AM
 
Quote
So I'll assume that you don't expect us to enact public legislation based on something that is basically your personal opinion.

Correct. The federal government has no business legislating anything based on the existence, or believed non-existence of God.

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No, they don't.  If you actually understood the elementary principles of the theories, you would know this.  But since you don't, you really shouldn't run your mouth about them.

The entire mass of the universe was packed into an object the size of a grain of sand............all of a sudden, BOOM, the universe was born.

Then on one particular planet, (earth), a bunch of chemicals mixed together, and all of a sudden, POOF, life began with a single cell. From that single cell, every species on earth emerged. Sure sounds like magic to me.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 06, 2012, 07:45:09 AM

Correct. The federal government has no business legislating anything based on the existence, or believed non-existence of God.

Good luck finding a right wing politician to back then.

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The entire mass of the universe was packed into an object the size of a grain of sand............all of a sudden, BOOM, the universe was born.

That is not a belief.  That is an extrapolation from heavy observation and advanced mathematics I don't even pretend to comprehend.  But to note, current Big Bang cosmology has the universe being originally packed into a singularity, not "an object the size of a grain of sand".  And it wasn't just the mass of the universe that expanded; it was space and time itself.  Which, arguably, makes the question of "why" meaningless, if time did not exist before the Big Bang.

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Then on one particular planet, (earth), a bunch of chemicals mixed together, and all of a sudden, POOF, life began with a single cell. From that single cell, every species on earth emerged. Sure sounds like magic to me.

Sounds like magic to you because you don't understand it.  That Earth developed life is not magic; it's simple probability.  Out of quadrillions of planets, at least one happened to undergo the unlikely set of coincidences that led to the development of intelligent life.  Do you think one person winning the lottery is magic?

-------------

You still haven't answered the million dollar question: you think that the universe is far to complex to have just appeared, how do you explain God?  He just exists for no reason, and yet is infinitely more complex than the universe.  And unlike the universe, which quite certainly exists, God is a variable you add in to explain said universe.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 06, 2012, 08:58:55 AM
Quote
Which, arguably, makes the question of "why" meaningless, if time did not exist before the Big Bang.

Time does not exist now. It is a human construct.

Quote
And unlike the universe, which quite certainly exists, God is a variable you add in to explain said universe.

God exists. If you want to know the whys and hows, ask God. I know all I need to.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 06, 2012, 09:17:07 AM
Here's some "feel good" reading for you. Christians don't seem to have a problem with non-Christians, but boy-howdy, athiests sure do have a problem with Christians.

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2010/06/08/are-the-ten-commandments-really-the-basis-for-our-laws/ (http://tp://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2010/06/08/are-the-ten-commandments-really-the-basis-for-our-laws/)
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 06, 2012, 10:49:25 AM
Time does not exist now. It is a human construct.

Einstein proved you wrong several decades ago.  Get with the times, please.

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God exists. If you want to know the whys and hows, ask God. I know all I need to.

You aren't very good at formulating a logical argument, are you?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 06, 2012, 11:40:49 AM
Einstein proved you wrong several decades ago.  Get with the times, please.

You aren't very good at formulating a logical argument, are you?

You are an incredibly confused individual. You got it exactly backwards.

http://physics.about.com/od/timetravel/f/doestimeexist.htm (http://physics.about.com/od/timetravel/f/doestimeexist.htm)

http://discovermagazine.com/2007/jun/in-no-time (http://discovermagazine.com/2007/jun/in-no-time)

Please do some of your own research. I don't have time to be your teacher.

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/biocentrism/201111/is-death-illusion-evidence-suggests-death-isn-t-the-end (http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/biocentrism/201111/is-death-illusion-evidence-suggests-death-isn-t-the-end)
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 06, 2012, 06:47:50 PM
 :lol:  So you think your "research" in online websites (Psychology Today!   :rolleyes: ) counts for something?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Murph on November 06, 2012, 10:19:03 PM
This never makes sense for atheists, but I will try. God is transcendent, independent from our world/universe, all science, and is beyond true human perception without His use of miracles, angels, and many more methods.
Science can not prove God, that is why the whole thing is called FAITH. Go ahead call me a close-minded fool.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 07, 2012, 04:44:04 AM
This never makes sense for atheists, but I will try. God is transcendent, independent from our world/universe, all science, and is beyond true human perception without His use of miracles, angels, and many more methods.
Science can not prove God, that is why the whole thing is called FAITH. Go ahead call me a close-minded fool.

The only thing that's foolish, is getting into discussions with people that demand scientific evidence of God's existence. Which is why I've checked out of this thread. :wink:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 07, 2012, 06:52:35 PM
This never makes sense for atheists, but I will try. God is transcendent, independent from our world/universe, all science, and is beyond true human perception without His use of miracles, angels, and many more methods.
Science can not prove God, that is why the whole thing is called FAITH. Go ahead call me a close-minded fool.

By this logic, I can declare the existence of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.  Go ahead and disprove me.  He's beyond space, time, logic and science.  By your inane "logic", my position is unbeatable.

But let me repeat:

You are openly denouncing a logical, empirical analysis of your deity!

What kind of joke of a debater actually admits that his position cannot be supported through reason and facts?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 08, 2012, 04:54:55 AM
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richard-greene/albert-einstein-and-the-s_b_800936.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richard-greene/albert-einstein-and-the-s_b_800936.html)

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6688917/ns/world_news/t/there-god-leading-atheist-concludes/ (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6688917/ns/world_news/t/there-god-leading-atheist-concludes/)
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 08, 2012, 12:50:33 PM
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richard-greene/albert-einstein-and-the-s_b_800936.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richard-greene/albert-einstein-and-the-s_b_800936.html)

 :rolleyes: Huffington post?

Before I read over that article, I'll point out that Einstein rejected the notion of a personal god, and considered the stories in the bible to be ridiculous.  Of course, this is an Appeal to Authority, but...

Quote
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6688917/ns/world_news/t/there-god-leading-atheist-concludes/ (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6688917/ns/world_news/t/there-god-leading-atheist-concludes/)

Hey, look here!
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 08, 2012, 12:58:37 PM
Now you can't decide which God you want proof of. Go argue with a Muslim. :biggrin:

If the concept of God scares you, lets use a Star Wars analogy. Maybe you'll understand.

darkness vs light

good vs evil

love vs hate

giving vs taking

Last Thurs the POTUS called for his followers to vote for revenge. On Tues he won the election.

Look around Luke.............the Dark side grows stronger by the day.

Homosexual sex and the killing of babies just won an election.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 08, 2012, 01:37:45 PM
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richard-greene/albert-einstein-and-the-s_b_800936.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/richard-greene/albert-einstein-and-the-s_b_800936.html)

Now you almost certainly don't understand what the guy is talking about (and he doesn't seem to either), but Greene is making the laughable argument that, because the universe contains a vast quantity of energy...it is a deity.  Implicitly, it is sentient, there is an afterlife and...

wait, by his "lots of energy = intelligence" argument, does that mean the sun is more intelligent than me?

Yeah, your article is full of shit.

Quote
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6688917/ns/world_news/t/there-god-leading-atheist-concludes/ (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6688917/ns/world_news/t/there-god-leading-atheist-concludes/)

Ad hominem. 

Now you can't decide which God you want proof of. Go argue with a Muslim. :biggrin:

If the concept of God scares you, lets use a Star Wars analogy. Maybe you'll understand.

darkness vs light

good vs evil

love vs hate

giving vs taking

Last Thurs the POTUS called for his followers to vote for revenge. On Tues he won the election.

Look around Luke.............the Dark side grows stronger by the day.

Homosexual sex and the killing of babies just won an election.

This isn't scientific.  This isn't logically coherent.  This is appealing to a fictional movie to prove the existence of a being.

In other words, this is the most ridiculous nonsense I've seen all day.   :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 08, 2012, 01:40:59 PM
For 20 years, our POTUS fell to his knees and worshipped at the altar of a man that said, "GOD DAMN AMERICA".................and he won a second term.

Son, if you cannot see evil when you are surrounded by it, nothing I say will convince you that God exists. Good luck.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 08, 2012, 03:01:33 PM
For 20 years, our POTUS fell to his knees and worshipped at the altar of a man that said, "GOD DAMN AMERICA".................and he won a second term.

Son, if you cannot see evil when you are surrounded by it, nothing I say will convince you that God exists. Good luck.

Is this supposed to be a logical argument?   :lol:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 08, 2012, 03:05:16 PM
Is this supposed to be a logical argument?   :lol:

It is to me. Sorry if you can't see it.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 08, 2012, 03:11:19 PM
It is to me. Sorry if you can't see it.

Please, please tell me you're trolling.

Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 08, 2012, 04:10:16 PM
Please, please tell me you're trolling.

Not at all. It's your thread bro. :biggrin:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 11, 2012, 06:55:15 AM
You are aware that I can copy your arguments word for word, and substitute "god" for "flying spaghetti monster", without lowering its legitimacy or logical (in)coherence, right?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 11, 2012, 07:23:45 AM
You are aware that I can copy your arguments word for word, and substitute "god" for "flying spaghetti monster", without lowering its legitimacy or logical (in)coherence, right?

Go for it. :thumbsup:

Hey. Good news!!!!!

I found you a site where you can type until your fingers are blue............and somebody might even pay attention. :wink:

Here's a good one:

http://www.debate.org/opinions/are-the-terms-b-c-and-a-d-disrespectful-of-non-christian-religions (http://www.debate.org/opinions/are-the-terms-b-c-and-a-d-disrespectful-of-non-christian-religions)
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 11, 2012, 07:45:53 AM
I found you a site where you can type until your fingers are blue............and somebody might even pay attention. :wink:

In other words, you don't even have the pretense of a logical argument, and ridicule the concept that someone would demand coherency in a debate.   :rolleyes:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 11, 2012, 08:17:02 AM
In other words, you don't even have the pretense of a logical argument, and ridicule the concept that someone would demand coherency in a debate.   :rolleyes:

You have difficulty with comprehension on the political forum..........even when facts are presented. If anyone could explain God in scientific terms, it would probably cause your brain to melt. We wouldn't want that.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 11, 2012, 09:30:54 AM
You have difficulty with comprehension on the political forum..........even when facts are presented.

Where did you present facts, other than a pseudoscientific extrapolation from general relativity you probably did not understand?

Quote
If anyone could explain God in scientific terms, it would probably cause your brain to melt. We wouldn't want that.

That "anyone" clearly isn't you.  You're bluffing, and you know it.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 11, 2012, 09:34:54 AM
Where did you present facts, other than a pseudoscientific extrapolation from general relativity you probably did not understand?

That "anyone" clearly isn't you.  You're bluffing, and you know it.

I'm not bluffing. God can't be explained in scientific terms.........not by me anyway.

This is another one of your threads that is a complete waste of time.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 11, 2012, 10:04:08 AM
I'm not bluffing. God can't be explained in scientific terms.........not by me anyway.

Not by anyone.  If something cannot be explained in scientific terms, it does not exist.

How about this:

Name me one thing other than God that cannot be explained scientifically even in theory, but still quite clearly exists.  And no, abstract ideals do not "exist".
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: valjean on November 11, 2012, 12:08:49 PM
Not by anyone.  If something cannot be explained in scientific terms, it does not exist.


Would you say only things subject to perception by our particular five senses exist?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 11, 2012, 12:37:57 PM
Would you say only things subject to perception by our particular five senses exist?

OK, let me rephrase that:

Anything that cannot be objectively verified or supported through the scientific method has no reason for us to believe that it exists.

So technically, God could exist.  But the probability is pretty low, because the only way he could exist would be by coincidence.  Flying monkeys on Mars could exist, but for all intents of purposes we can conclusively say that they do not.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 11, 2012, 12:46:36 PM
OK, let me rephrase that:

Anything that cannot be objectively verified or supported through the scientific method has no reason for us to believe that it exists.

So technically, God could exist.  But the probability is pretty low, because the only way he could exist would be by coincidence.  Flying monkeys on Mars could exist, but for all intents of purposes we can conclusively say that they do not.

Got it. So we can conclusively say that life does not exist anywhere but on planet earth. We cannot objectively verify or support it through scientific method, so there is no reason to believe that it exists.

You'd make a crappy scientist. :lol:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 11, 2012, 02:11:28 PM
Got it. So we can conclusively say that life does not exist anywhere but on planet earth. We cannot objectively verify or support it through scientific method, so there is no reason to believe that it exists.

No, we can use basic probability analysis (read: math) to suggest that life is very much likely to exist somewhere else in the universe (something that would turn Christian theology on its head).

Can you use similar arithmetic to establish that the probability of God existing is more than infinitesimal? 

----

You see, your entire logic here is "you can't prove that X couldn't possibly exist, so it must exist."

I suppose we should start preparing for the invasion of the flying hippos from Jupiter sometime soon.   :smile:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 11, 2012, 03:19:47 PM
No, we can use basic probability analysis (read: math) to suggest that life is very much likely to exist somewhere else in the universe (something that would turn Christian theology on its head).

Can you use similar arithmetic to establish that the probability of God existing is more than infinitesimal? 

----

You see, your entire logic here is "you can't prove that X couldn't possibly exist, so it must exist."

I suppose we should start preparing for the invasion of the flying hippos from Jupiter sometime soon.   :smile:

God isn't something I argue about. You may have noticed that I haven't attempted to prove that God exists.

I know God exists. It must be lonely being you. It explains a lot of your behavior on here. I suspect that it ties in with much of the liberal anger that we see. Hatred is all you have. Pretty sad existence.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 13, 2012, 01:18:54 PM
God isn't something I argue about. You may have noticed that I haven't attempted to prove that God exists.

Then exactly what are you trying to prove?

Quote
It must be lonely being you. It explains a lot of your behavior on here. I suspect that it ties in with much of the liberal anger that we see. Hatred is all you have. Pretty sad existence.

I'm actually quite happy without God in my life.  Maybe you don't understand this, but there comes a time when you can outgrow your imaginary friend and realize that you only have one life; here, on Earth.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 13, 2012, 02:35:29 PM
Quote
Then exactly what are you trying to prove?

 Nothing. You've done all the work for me. You're just an angry little a**hole.

According to your convoluted logic, anything that can't be mathematically or scientifically quantified can possibly exist, therefore.........

Love cannot possibly exist..............and neither can hate.

Infinity cannot be quantified, therefore the universe does not exist.

Pi cannot be quantified, therefore it cannot exist, and yet it is depended on daily...............just like God.

Like I said.......you'd make a crappy scientist. Scientists go out and do the work to either prove or disprove something. The very best you can ever come up with is a demand for someone else to to prove something. We have a word for those kind of people................LOSER.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 13, 2012, 04:15:56 PM

According to your convoluted logic, anything that can't be mathematically or scientifically quantified can possibly exist

I said exactly the opposite.  Please try again.

Quote
Love cannot possibly exist..............and neither can hate.

Love and hate can both be scientifically verified.  You need to read up on this stuff.

Quote
Infinity cannot be quantified, therefore the universe does not exist.

The universe is not infinite.  You need to read up on this stuff.

Quote
Pi cannot be quantified, therefore it cannot exist, and yet it is depended on daily...............just like God.

Pi can be mathematically proven to exist.  And it can be quantified - just not in decimal or fraction form.  Try again.

Quote
Like I said.......you'd make a crappy scientist. Scientists go out and do the work to either prove or disprove something. The very best you can ever come up with is a demand for someone else to to prove something. We have a word for those kind of people................LOSER.

You don't understand Burden of Proof or the Rule of Parsimony, and you think that the universe is infinite. 



You also came up with the "pi exists, therefore God exists!" argument, which just made my day.  That's the most convoluted piece of crap I've seen written all week.  Thanks!   :tounge:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 13, 2012, 04:27:57 PM
I said exactly the opposite.  Please try again.

Love and hate can both be scientifically verified.  You need to read up on this stuff.

The universe is not infinite.  You need to read up on this stuff.

Pi can be mathematically proven to exist.  And it can be quantified - just not in decimal or fraction form.  Try again.

You don't understand Burden of Proof or the Rule of Parsimony, and you think that the universe is infinite. 



You also came up with the "pi exists, therefore God exists!" argument, which just made my day.  That's the most convoluted piece of crap I've seen written all week.  Thanks!   :tounge:

Ditto. Prove that the universe is finite. :thumbup:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 13, 2012, 04:37:48 PM
Ditto. Prove that the universe is finite. :thumbup:

You know as well as I that you have no idea what you're talking about.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on November 13, 2012, 05:46:36 PM
You know as well as I that you have no idea what you're talking about.

You're pushing 720 posts, and haven't managed to make one valid point with any of them. :wink:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 13, 2012, 05:59:35 PM
You're pushing 720 posts, and haven't managed to make one valid point with any of them. :wink:

Go back and learn elementary physics before you speak on the issue again.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: JustKari on November 14, 2012, 09:32:05 AM
No, we can use basic probability analysis (read: math) to suggest that life is very much likely to exist somewhere else in the universe (something that would turn Christian theology on its head).

Can you use similar arithmetic to establish that the probability of God existing is more than infinitesimal? 

----

You see, your entire logic here is "you can't prove that X couldn't possibly exist, so it must exist."

I suppose we should start preparing for the invasion of the flying hippos from Jupiter sometime soon.   :smile:

So, wait, in another thread, you posted three links saying voter disenfranchisement "could" exist, insinuating that it does exist.  You can not prove that it it exists anymore than some can prove that God exists short of asking him to show up.  Since you are so hell bent on proof of His existence, I will pray that He shows Himself to you.  Then you can prove voter "disenfranchisement" to me.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on December 01, 2012, 08:28:25 AM
You've all likely heard of it: the universe is ordered and has just the right makeup and physical laws for life to exist.  Ergo, it must have been intelligently designed.

OK, let's analyze this commonly used argument, one that even Sir Isaac Newton adhered to:

1. The argument simply advocates deism, not any specific religion.  There is no conceivable justification for leaping from "the universe was intelligently designed" to "the universe was intelligently designed on X day, in Y days, by Z creator, for A purpose in B exact circumstances".

2. The argument actually leads to the conclusion that the watchmaker is imperfect and impersonal.  After all, if you came across a fabulously designed watch, you would assume that the watchmaker was highly skilled.  But if you came across a watch with serious imperfections, the rule of parsimony would dictate that the watchmaker messed up, not that the watchmaker was an omnipotent deity and that, through a ridiculous convoluted narrative, the watch broke itself due to no fault of the watchmaker.  To state otherwise would be to presuppose that the watchmaker must be omnipotent, which sounds like blatant and unjustified bias, and it is.

3. Here's the kicker: the exact same logic can be applied to the watchmaker.  If the universe is complex -> it must have been designed is a valid logical argument, then the watchmaker is complex -> the watchmaker must have been designed is just as true, if not moreso.  This leads to an infinite regression, which does nothing but make the problem more complex with every backpeddle.

If we admit that, logically, there must be a First Cause (unless if we include some sort of time-loop, which discounts God entirely), wouldn't Occam's Razor suggest that we just leave the universe, which which clearly exists, as the First Cause, rather than add in an infinitely complex variable (God) into the equation that solves nothing, and actually makes the question larger?

The problem is that the universe itself as a "First Cause" defies explanation.  Why should the universe be the first cause?  Aren't you simply replacing the "god of the gaps" with the "universe of the gaps"?  Aren't you turning the universe itself into the god of the Deists?  It seems to me not to be an answering of the question rather than an abandoning of the question.

The existence of the universe does beg questions of origin--which is why many talk of an infinity of universes...
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on December 01, 2012, 08:30:12 AM
Sounds like magic to you because you don't understand it.  That Earth developed life is not magic; it's simple probability.  Out of quadrillions of planets, at least one happened to undergo the unlikely set of coincidences that led to the development of intelligent life.  Do you think one person winning the lottery is magic?

If there's only one ticket--and it's a winner--is that "simple probability"?

Quote
You still haven't answered the million dollar question: you think that the universe is far to complex to have just appeared, how do you explain God?  He just exists for no reason, and yet is infinitely more complex than the universe.  And unlike the universe, which quite certainly exists, God is a variable you add in to explain said universe.

God is not necessarily more complex than the universe.  From where do you get the necessity that God is more complex than the universe?  It does not follow.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on December 01, 2012, 08:31:57 AM
Not by anyone.  If something cannot be explained in scientific terms, it does not exist.

How about this:

Name me one thing other than God that cannot be explained scientifically even in theory, but still quite clearly exists.  And no, abstract ideals do not "exist".

By "exist" you mean "exist materially."  Well, if you're going to restrict the parameters of the question so that the result is what you want, well, you're only going to get the answers you want.  Not exactly a robust examination of reality...
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on December 01, 2012, 08:32:26 AM
Would you say only things subject to perception by our particular five senses exist?

We have more than five senses...
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on December 01, 2012, 08:33:38 AM
OK, let me rephrase that:

Anything that cannot be objectively verified or supported through the scientific method has no reason for us to believe that it exists.

So technically, God could exist.  But the probability is pretty low, because the only way he could exist would be by coincidence.  Flying monkeys on Mars could exist, but for all intents of purposes we can conclusively say that they do not.

What do you mean by "no reason"?  By "reason" do you mean the physical properties of your brain that are the result of random processes and natural selection?  For what "reason" do you find your "reason" trustworthy?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on December 01, 2012, 08:35:23 AM
No, we can use basic probability analysis (read: math) to suggest that life is very much likely to exist somewhere else in the universe (something that would turn Christian theology on its head).

Can you use similar arithmetic to establish that the probability of God existing is more than infinitesimal? 

----

You see, your entire logic here is "you can't prove that X couldn't possibly exist, so it must exist."

I suppose we should start preparing for the invasion of the flying hippos from Jupiter sometime soon.   :smile:

Hmmm...I guess you wouldn't like Stephen Hawkings argument that since M-Theory might be true (and it is possible that multiple universes exist), God does not exist.

I wonder how he would field the question whether or not it were possible that God exists...

Do you think it's possible that God exists?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on December 01, 2012, 08:37:10 AM
I'm actually quite happy without God in my life.  Maybe you don't understand this, but there comes a time when you can outgrow your imaginary friend and realize that you only have one life; here, on Earth.

And you can outgrow your naïve understanding of "happiness" without any meaning and purpose.  I don't suggest you go too far down this road.  It can make you very unhappy.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on December 01, 2012, 09:43:16 AM
And you can outgrow your naïve understanding of "happiness" without any meaning and purpose.  I don't suggest you go too far down this road.  It can make you very unhappy.

I think sci fi is gone. He wore out his welcome, since his entire purpose for being here was to try to get everyone else as angry as he was.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Patriot on December 27, 2012, 01:13:27 AM
And you can outgrow your naïve understanding of "happiness" without any meaning and purpose.  I don't suggest you go too far down this road.  It can make you very unhappy.

Sci Fan, you say that you are happy living a life without God ?

How is that possible ? How can one live a life being a rapist, murderer, etc., and be happy ?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Yawn on December 27, 2012, 06:40:55 PM
He came and left. You won't get an answer from him. He burned himself out long ago.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 05, 2013, 12:53:30 PM
I was reading over "new replies to your posts", and had to respond to this...stuff:

If there's only one ticket--and it's a winner--is that "simple probability"?

What kind of a rebuttal is this?  How the hell does your analogy make the slightest sense, when there are innumerable billions of "winning tickets" in the universe? 

Oh, and by the way, if there were only one ticket of a super-lottery ever sold, and a random person won it, I certainly would not attribute it to divine will.


Quote
God is not necessarily more complex than the universe.  From where do you get the necessity that God is more complex than the universe?  It does not follow.

In the same manner that you are more complex than a rock.  God is infinitely intelligent and powerful, while being just as large as the universe (omnipresence).  God's existence is a far greater unlikelihood than a large but ultimately far simpler universe.

What do you mean by "no reason"?  By "reason" do you mean the physical properties of your brain that are the result of random processes and natural selection?  For what "reason" do you find your "reason" trustworthy?

Please cut this pseudo-philosophical, rather silly set of questions.  Reason here is (obviously) related to logical necessity found in Occam's Razor/the principle of parsimony, and relevant to a scientific discussion on the origin of life and/or the universe. 

The fact is that an analysis of empirical data gives no reason to add in an infinitely complex and unobservable God variable to the equation.  Doing so explains nothing and makes the watchmaker argument even more unsolvable (as I've explained before).  The only reasons to add God into a scientific paradigm are chiefly emotional, and bear no more logical merit than flying unicorns or monkeys on Mars.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: IBeMe on May 05, 2013, 02:03:55 PM
At what point does this become Spam?
Posting endless rants, and starting new threads in the middle of other threads.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 05, 2013, 02:06:44 PM
At what point does this become Spam?
Posting endless rants,

You can easily humiliate me by formulating a logical argument devoid of any ad hominems, circular reasoning, double standards, strawmans, factual/scientific inaccuracies, or red herrings.

Please do try.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Eyesabide on May 05, 2013, 03:14:27 PM
You can easily humiliate me by formulating a logical argument devoid of any ad hominems, circular reasoning, double standards, strawmans, factual/scientific inaccuracies, or red herrings.

Please do try.


Please state the mathematical formula use are basing your proof on that there is no singular God. Using Occams razor, since it fails as fact, being just a guide or method to speed towards a logical but not always accurate answer, might not be your best choice. Solomonoffs Theory of Inductive Inference more or less proves this even though it is commonly used to support the Razor.

So, which mathematical statement  is your factual proof there is no God?

Certainly, there is no attempt here to humiliate you in any way, you give me many things to think about. I am not a scientist or mathmatician, just a person who enjoys questioning my own opinions. You present many ideas to think about.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: walkstall on May 05, 2013, 04:22:50 PM
At what point does this become Spam?
Posting endless rants, and starting new threads in the middle of other threads.

Your learning his MO IBeMe.   He changes the subject when he starting to get his ass kicked.   
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 05, 2013, 06:59:22 PM
I was reading over "new replies to your posts", and had to respond to this...stuff:

What kind of a rebuttal is this?  How the hell does your analogy make the slightest sense, when there are innumerable billions of "winning tickets" in the universe?

Oh, and by the way, if there were only one ticket of a super-lottery ever sold, and a random person won it, I certainly would not attribute it to divine will.

Um...there's only one universe.  When people are talking about the "probabilities of the universe supporting life," that probability refers to the universe.  What is the "probability" if there's only one?  You understand that we're not talking about stars and planets, but about the probability of our universe itself supporting life?

If there are a billion (or more possibilities), only one ticket, and the ticket is a winner...to what would you attribute that to?  Chance?

Quote
In the same manner that you are more complex than a rock.  God is infinitely intelligent and powerful, while being just as large as the universe (omnipresence).  God's existence is a far greater unlikelihood than a large but ultimately far simpler universe.

One aspect of the complexity of our universe is that it is composed of matter.  It is possible to contain highly complex information in a very simply physical structure (i.e., simpler, for example, than what contains the human brain).

Quote
Please cut this pseudo-philosophical, rather silly set of questions.  Reason here is (obviously) related to logical necessity found in Occam's Razor/the principle of parsimony, and relevant to a scientific discussion on the origin of life and/or the universe. 

The fact is that an analysis of empirical data gives no reason to add in an infinitely complex and unobservable God variable to the equation.  Doing so explains nothing and makes the watchmaker argument even more unsolvable (as I've explained before).  The only reasons to add God into a scientific paradigm are chiefly emotional, and bear no more logical merit than flying unicorns or monkeys on Mars.

Hang on a sec--this is not a silly set of questions.  If Reason is your ultimate judge, what do you use to evaluate the reasonableness of your Reason?  What makes it trustworthy?  Everything you use to analyze all this empirical data is the result of random processes.  So what makes it "Reasonable"?  And how do you know?  And on what basis do you decide that "only what science can measure" is true or real?  Isn't that a non-scientific metaphysical leap?  After all, you certainly cannot prove it with empirical data...your whole argument seems to be based on unevaluated presuppositions.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on May 06, 2013, 04:55:20 AM
I find the "accepted" evolutionary theory to be nothing short of a miracle. A few chemical elements got mixed together, and, all of a sudden.....spontaneous life!!!! A single cell that gave rise to every living species on earth.

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/05/100513-science-evolution-darwin-single-ancestor/ (http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/05/100513-science-evolution-darwin-single-ancestor/)

People disagree with this, but I also think that due to a complexity that the human mind could never grasp, the Bible includes a certain degree of metaphor in order to help us make sense of something that is beyond our scope of possible understanding.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 06, 2013, 08:13:45 AM
I find the "accepted" evolutionary theory to be nothing short of a miracle. A few chemical elements got mixed together, and, all of a sudden.....spontaneous life!!!! A single cell that gave rise to every living species on earth.

That's not really the accepted evolutionary theory, which requires the existence of things like DNA; in other words, it only works after those "few chemical elements" have already gotten mixed together properly.

Quote
People disagree with this, but I also think that due to a complexity that the human mind could never grasp, the Bible includes a certain degree of metaphor in order to help us make sense of something that is beyond our scope of possible understanding.

The Bible obviously contains metaphor; those who suggest otherwise are either being ignorant or haven't read it or thought with any depth about it.  The issue is, how do you know what is metaphor and what is not?   Do what degree to the metaphors reflect what we call reality, and in what aspects?  The answers to those question inform the art of interpretation (in which it's not so difficult to be a reasonable artist).
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: IBeMe on May 06, 2013, 08:49:27 AM
Quote
A single cell that gave rise to every living species on earth.


That article is all fiction; more scientific term, BS.

You can't come up with any statistics on how life started because there's no working evolutionary theory of how life could exist without God creating it.

That's what Harvard's “Origins of Life in the Universe Initiative” is all about; trying to come up with a theory of how life could exist without God; David R. Liu, a professor of chemistry and chemical biology at Harvard. But ''my expectation is that we will be able to reduce this to a very simple series of logical events that could have taken place with no divine intervention."

It's such an embarrassment for the Theory of Evolution that Big Boy Benner said, “It is quite gratifying to see Harvard is going for a solution to a problem that will be remembered 100 years from now.”

When Big Boy Benner says the Theory of Evolution has a problem, it has a BIG problem.

As it stands now, this is a dead theory walking, no explanation of how life could exist without God having created it.

You can't use statistics on a formula that starts with zero, the answer will always be zero.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on May 06, 2013, 09:41:27 AM
My point is, that I don't see science and God to be mutually exclusive. I think that scientific discovery illustrates the incredible complexity of God's creation.

When people have a hidden agenda, and attempt to use science to disprove the existence of God, it only muddies the water; the same occurs when people attempt to take everything that is written in the Bible, literally, and try to use the Bible to deny what science is showing.

God gave us the brains to figure out how things work, and it has led to incredible discoveries in medicine and everything else in our lives. God and science are not separate, as far as I'm concerned; science gives us another way to better understand God...and like anything, it can be used for good or evil.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: IBeMe on May 06, 2013, 12:18:55 PM

I love science!
It's the advancement of science that's put the Theory of Evolution in the embarrassing state of having no explanation of how life could exist without God.

I quote the evolutionary scientists above; the world's leading evolutionary scientists  are working in, and around, this project trying to come up with a theory of how life could exist without God creating it.

They don't even have a working theory; don't even have a consensus on where to start looking.

The complexity of the most "simple one-cell" turned out to be so complex that it blew the legs out from underneath the Theory of Evolution.

A thumb size sample of DNA can hold all the information on the whole Internet


Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Solar on May 06, 2013, 12:23:18 PM
I love science!
It's the advancement of science that's put the Theory of Evolution in the embarrassing state of having no explanation of how life could exist without God.

I quote the evolutionary scientists above; the world's leading evolutionary scientists  are working in, and around, this project trying to come up with a theory of how life could exist without God creating it.

They don't even have a working theory; don't even have a consensus on where to start looking.

The complexity of the most "simple one-cell" turned out to be so complex that it blew the legs out from underneath the Theory of Evolution.

A thumb size sample of DNA can hold all the information on the whole Internet
Gods database. :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: IBeMe on May 06, 2013, 12:49:11 PM

"A device the size of your thumb could store as much information as the whole Internet," said Harvard University molecular geneticist George Church, the project's senior researcher

http://m.us.wsj.com/articles/a/SB10000872396390444233104577593291643488120?mg=reno64-wsj (http://m.us.wsj.com/articles/a/SB10000872396390444233104577593291643488120?mg=reno64-wsj)
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: taxed on May 06, 2013, 04:14:04 PM
I was expecting more logical, scientific responses.  You know, sticking with the whole "fact based" premise of the board.  Do you think "personal experience" is sufficient to convict a defendant in the court of law?  Sufficient to test and design a rocket going into outer space?  Sufficient to write a solid essay for your middle school teacher?  Nope.

You believe in man-made global warming. 
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Eyesabide on May 07, 2013, 04:02:15 AM
Sci Fi Fan,
               I have respectfully accepted your challenge to  formulate a logical argument (on the existence of God). The glove has been picked up. Present arms sir! Show me the formulaic basis of you proof there is no God so that we can begin this debate!

 On a more serious note, I have found many formulas you might choose as your first shot.

               
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: IBeMe on May 07, 2013, 06:02:16 AM
Quote
karmarat: the same occurs when people attempt to take everything that is written in the Bible, literally, and try to use the Bible to deny what science is showing.

I agree with you on science, true science; not politically-correct science or agenda-driven science.
Also keeping in mind how little science truly knows about our existence. Most of the Universe consist of dark matter, and we don't have a clue what it is.

I believe God created everything in six days and the Bible time line of a few thousand years.
God puts a tremendous emphasis on six days by making the Sabbath a day of rest, and eternal statute.

Everything had to be created at once; the degree of complexity demands it.

If an evolutionist wants to believe in 4.5 billion years; for sake of argument, I'll give it to them; but I don't for a second believe it.

Each person consist of 10 to 100 trillion cells.
A typical healthy human brain contains about 200 billion nerve cells, or neurons, linked to one another via hundreds of trillions of tiny contacts called synapses.
A three-year-old child has about one quadrillion synapses.
Each synapses consist of many pieces of machinery, some of which work with individual atoms and molecules.
If everything isn't in place doing its job, you hit room temperature.

I already mentioned, a thumb-size group of DNA can hold all the information of the whole Internet, but   that's only one type of memory.
The range of capabilities possible for even small groups of neurons are beyond current understanding.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nervous_system (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nervous_system)

How's that puny 4.5 billion years looking now?

And all the information of how to build this complex piece of machinery, the human body, has to be encoded in each egg, that's how we all start out.

Not only, the male sperm has a little motor capable of doing 6,000 to 17,000 rpm unloaded; that's how the sperm gets to the egg. (google flagellum).

The human body is engineered down to the atom level, consisting of machinery that works with atoms.

Random occurrence in a puny 4.5 billion years? mathematically impossible!
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Eyesabide on May 08, 2013, 07:30:24 AM
SCI FI MAN... COME OUT AND PLAAAAAEEEAAY!

You set up a good challenge, I am finding all kinds of theories to support what you seem to propose on this forum. You have been spouting the "No God " position strongly for a very long time so I imagine you have lots of the same kind of proof you have been demanding from "Believers".

Certainly the delay in your response is longer than you would reasonably expect someone else to reply to a challenge. I sincerely hope the delay is not due to any misfortune to you or yours.

Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Solar on May 08, 2013, 09:26:59 AM
SCI FI MAN... COME OUT AND PLAAAAAEEEAAY!

You set up a good challenge, I am finding all kinds of theories to support what you seem to propose on this forum. You have been spouting the "No God " position strongly for a very long time so I imagine you have lots of the same kind of proof you have been demanding from "Believers".

Certainly the delay in your response is longer than you would reasonably expect someone else to reply to a challenge. I sincerely hope the delay is not due to any misfortune to you or yours.
He'll be back in a couple of months, he was warned to settle down on the derailing of threads, so he is taking a self imposed absence.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Eyesabide on May 08, 2013, 12:25:35 PM
Thank you Solar! I was hoping to have a good debate with this person.  Hopefully I will be able to remember this is where we left off.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: walkstall on May 08, 2013, 12:42:13 PM
Thank you Solar! I was hoping to have a good debate with this person.  Hopefully I will be able to remember this is where we left off.

Just bookmark it Eyes.  But good luck with a good honest debate with SCI FI MAN .
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Solar on May 08, 2013, 03:25:03 PM
Thank you Solar! I was hoping to have a good debate with this person.  Hopefully I will be able to remember this is where we left off.
He will, but as Walks pointed out, he has no interest in real debate, he wants to change the subject, or ask a dozen questions in hopes of steering in another direction the moment he is on the ropes.
This is why he's on a short leash.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Eyesabide on May 09, 2013, 06:11:53 AM
If he is of this sort, why is he allowed to stay at all? I am looking at this as an out of box thinking exercise. All in fun.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Solar on May 09, 2013, 06:44:55 AM
If he is of this sort, why is he allowed to stay at all? I am looking at this as an out of box thinking exercise. All in fun.
That's why he's allowed to post, he allows people to exercise their intellect, instead of people simply agreeing with them, it challenges them, prepares them with an argument when they stumble into these idiots in real life, a virtual punching bag.
Even though he is 100% wrong, there are people that think communism is where we should be heading and debating him helps you clarify your own arguments before you meet the fools in person.
It's also good practice in recognizing when people try and direct you into a trap, which is his only style of gotcha debate, which is dishonest debate. He cares nothing about coming to a resolution or a middle ground.

Think of him like a virus, you're building antibodies against the next disease you may encounter. :biggrin:
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Eyesabide on May 09, 2013, 12:18:06 PM
He challenged, I accepted, when he gives his logical formula that there is no God  I will respectfully present my response. If he chooses to accept that as an adult, we might have some fun. If not, you have already warned him to stay within certain guidelines, and he is aware of whatever consequence you will provide.

Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 10, 2013, 01:17:02 PM
Sci Fi Fan,
               I have respectfully accepted your challenge to  formulate a logical argument (on the existence of God). The glove has been picked up. Present arms sir! Show me the formulaic basis of you proof there is no God so that we can begin this debate!

 On a more serious note, I have found many formulas you might choose as your first shot.
           

Just a moment.

--------------------

First mistake: demanding proof that there is no God.  This is a violation of the standards of burden of proof.  Burden of proof always lies on the affirmative, or on the person making a claim.

In other words, you might as well ask me to prove that there are no invisible monkeys, or flying unicorns, or dancing horses on Mars.  I can't answer any of these challenges, so I suppose that this must mean that I should take the person who claims he is a alien from Venice seriously?

I can, however, demonstrate that the existence of God is ridiculously improbable.  Given that all religions start not based on any sort of scientific analysis or even basic observation, but rather on random myths and hearsay, claiming that your deity is real is a highly exaggerated analogy to playing in the lottery.  The only way you could be right is if you, by random chance, happen to conceive of a deity that exactly matches a real being.

In contrast, I know that dropping a pencil will cause it to fall because I can observe it.  That is the beauty of science: it's true for everyone.  That the force of gravity between two points is inversely proportional with the square of the radius is as true for you as it is for me; it's as true for aliens living on Mars as it is for priests in the middle ages (even if they do not know it).

With religion, however, haven't you ever noticed that nobody in, say, Africa independently discovered Jesus Christ before Christian missionaries arrived there?  If faith is a divine experience, why can't it be independently replicated, like science?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 10, 2013, 04:29:58 PM
I can, however, demonstrate that the existence of God is ridiculously improbable.  Given that all religions start not based on any sort of scientific analysis or even basic observation, but rather on random myths and hearsay, claiming that your deity is real is a highly exaggerated analogy to playing in the lottery.  The only way you could be right is if you, by random chance, happen to conceive of a deity that exactly matches a real being.

Wait, you've just created a strawman or relied on an erroneous premise or both.  You presume that religions are based on random myths and hearsay.  This is in direct opposition to the claims of Christianity, which appeal not only to direct eyewitness testimony but also direct personal experience.  I can know something is true through direct experience.

You also presume that truth is based on or is only verified by scientific analysis.  This is demonstrably not true.

Quote
In contrast, I know that dropping a pencil will cause it to fall because I can observe it.  That is the beauty of science: it's true for everyone.  That the force of gravity between two points is inversely proportional with the square of the radius is as true for you as it is for me; it's as true for aliens living on Mars as it is for priests in the middle ages (even if they do not know it).

You cannot, however, directly observe quantum mechanics or the effects of relativity.  You have to accept it on authority.

Quote
With religion, however, haven't you ever noticed that nobody in, say, Africa independently discovered Jesus Christ before Christian missionaries arrived there?  If faith is a divine experience, why can't it be independently replicated, like science?

That's kind of a ridiculous charge since it assumes something contrary to a basic principle of Christianity--that God does everything in relationship and has enlisted his "Church" to be his "Body."  You can claim this to be convenient, but it's internally consistent.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 10, 2013, 05:32:31 PM
You cannot, however, directly observe quantum mechanics or the effects of relativity.  You have to accept it on authority.

 :huh:

...I'm sorry, this is such a laughable statement that I think I'm going to spare myself the trouble, and stop.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 10, 2013, 06:01:16 PM
:huh:

...I'm sorry, this is such a laughable statement that I think I'm going to spare myself the trouble, and stop.

Oh...so you have done the experiments and the math?

Please answer with a simple "yes" or "no."
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 10, 2013, 06:15:53 PM
Oh...so you have done the experiments and the math?

I understand the math behind special relativity, and have a very, very superficial understanding of general relativity.  But no, I did not replicate the experiments myself.

Are you suggesting, then, that because neither of us are theoretical physicists, our acceptance of quantum mechanics is no more scientific than your acceptance of the existence of a deity?

Interesting logic.  I suppose, then, that we can equate the acceptance of Maxwell's laws of electromagnetism to the belief in the existence of Thor, since both, by your (and I can't stress this enough) utterly incomprehensible logic, both are equally plausible.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 10, 2013, 09:07:58 PM
I understand the math behind special relativity, and have a very, very superficial understanding of general relativity.  But no, I did not replicate the experiments myself.

Are you suggesting, then, that because neither of us are theoretical physicists, our acceptance of quantum mechanics is no more scientific than your acceptance of the existence of a deity?

Interesting logic.  I suppose, then, that we can equate the acceptance of Maxwell's laws of electromagnetism to the belief in the existence of Thor, since both, by your (and I can't stress this enough) utterly incomprehensible logic, both are equally plausible.

I simply said you accept it on authority, which apparently you do, since you have not replicated the experiments.  You scoffed at the notion that you accepted it on authority.  But you do.

That was my only point.  Any extrapolation is yours.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: kramarat on May 10, 2013, 09:32:32 PM
The only thing I don't really understand, is why do those that don't believe in God, live in such fear of those that do?

Please explain the threat.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Eyesabide on May 11, 2013, 05:47:11 AM
Welcome back, Sci Fi Fan!
          Thank you for returning to this. I asked for formulaic proof for the existence of God because that is what you seem to have asked others to prove the existence of God. 
          Am I correct in thinking you believe in things you can only see and/or conclude  through mathematics or physics?
          You have concluded it is "ridiculously  improbable" God exists. Is it equally probable that he does exist?
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 11, 2013, 09:32:13 AM
          You have concluded it is "ridiculously  improbable" God exists. Is it equally probable that he does exist?

OK, let's look at it this way.

If I asked you whether or not invisible flying unicorns live on Pluto, you would probably say no.  Can you prove that invisible flying unicorns don't live on Pluto?  No?  Then would you be open to me starting a religion and trying to dictate political policy and scientific research on the basis that, since you can't disprove the existence of invisible flying unicorns on Pluto, they must exist?

The reason why we don't believe in invisible flying unicorns living on Pluto is that, although in theory we could construct some convoluted theory as to how they might existence, probability tells us that the chances of their existence are negligible.  Occam's Razor tells us that believing in such beings is unnecessary because it is not needed to explain any evidence.

So my answer is that no, it's not equally probable that god exists any more than it's equally probable to win the lottery as it is to not win it.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Eyesabide on May 11, 2013, 11:24:03 AM
 


So my answer is that no, it's not equally probable that god exists

For whatever it is worth, I am open to you starting any religion you wish, but that is because I believe in the principles of the U.S. Constitution, not because of any personal religious beliefs I may or may not have. This discussion is, however, focus on the existence or not existence of God. Not belief systems.

So, if it is unequal in probability that God does or does not exist, and using your example of the lottery to support that; we have a few options.
(1.) Never buy a lottery ticket/ resolutely deny the existence of God.
(2.) Recognize the possibility of winning the lottery, but not playing.
(3.) Playing hoping you will win.
(4.) Playing KNOWING you will win, but might have doubts.
(5.) Always buy a lottery ticket/ resolutely accepting that you eventually will win.

Yes, there are many other variables. No need to go ad nauseum.

Forgive my spelling. "Schroedingers Cat" tells us that if something cannot be seen, it exists and does not exist at the same time. We also know, if the case of the cat, given enough time the cat will eventually die. If we apply Occams Razor, whether or not the probability of the cat dying from poison
is exceeded on the timeline, we still do not know if the cat exists inside the box.
The box must be opened to find out, Occams razor cannot conclude.

The use of Occams Razor supports Schroedingers Cat, and there is an equal probability of God's existence.

Now, back to the analogy of your lottery. Do you resolutely deny the possibility of the existence of God? If so, it is OK, that is of your faith and I respect that. No harm, no foul and we had an interesting exchange. Your input got me thinking and there is great value in that. Thank you once again.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 11, 2013, 11:35:44 AM
OK, let's look at it this way.

If I asked you whether or not invisible flying unicorns live on Pluto, you would probably say no.  Can you prove that invisible flying unicorns don't live on Pluto?  No?  Then would you be open to me starting a religion and trying to dictate political policy and scientific research on the basis that, since you can't disprove the existence of invisible flying unicorns on Pluto, they must exist?

The reason why we don't believe in invisible flying unicorns living on Pluto is that, although in theory we could construct some convoluted theory as to how they might existence, probability tells us that the chances of their existence are negligible.  Occam's Razor tells us that believing in such beings is unnecessary because it is not needed to explain any evidence.

So my answer is that no, it's not equally probable that god exists any more than it's equally probable to win the lottery as it is to not win it.

You're right.  It's logically true that it is impossible to prove a negative.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 11, 2013, 11:39:41 AM
You're right.  It's logically true that it is impossible to prove a negative.

Depending on the context, yes, it can be.

Meaning that using the "you can't prove God does not exist" argument is no more reasonable than my applying the same argument to support the existence of talking pancakes on Jupiter.

What you obviously haven't learned is that all scientific theories must be falsifiable, meaning that they could be disproved through observation or experiment.  Any claim that is designed to never be disprovable is not a legitimate theory.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 11, 2013, 12:10:26 PM
Depending on the context, yes, it can be.

Meaning that using the "you can't prove God does not exist" argument is no more reasonable than my applying the same argument to support the existence of talking pancakes on Jupiter.

That's right.

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What you obviously haven't learned is that all scientific theories must be falsifiable, meaning that they could be disproved through observation or experiment.  Any claim that is designed to never be disprovable is not a legitimate theory.

Um, no.  All scientific theories must be falsifiable.  Your condescension is unwarranted and unwanted.  I have not suggested a scientific claim that is not disprovable.  I also don't hold to the fallacy that only what can be scientifically proven can be held as true.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 11, 2013, 01:19:29 PM
I also don't hold to the fallacy that only what can be scientifically proven can be held as true.

Other than God, name something that can't be scientifically supported that you hold as objectively true.  Note that the existence of God is an assertion of the literal existence of a being, and that the claim involves an entire and elaborate creation process that can't possibly be considered true for one person and not true for another.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 11, 2013, 01:24:03 PM
Other than God, name something that can't be scientifically supported that you hold as objectively true.  Note that the existence of God is an assertion of the literal existence of a being, and that the claim involves an entire and elaborate creation process that can't possibly be considered true for one person and not true for another.

The universe can be rationally understood.
Our own rationale is trustworthy in the pursuit of truth.
My wife loves me.
If A=B and B=C then A=C.

None of these things can be empirically verified.

And yet I hold to all of them as true.  Not only that, if some of them were not true, then scientific pursuit itself would be useless.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 11, 2013, 06:56:22 PM
The universe can be rationally understood.

You drop a pencil.  It falls accelerating at [roughly] 9.8 m/s^2.  You add five and six.  You get eleven.

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Our own rationale is trustworthy in the pursuit of truth.

You know you don't have much of an argument when you have to fall back on the most irreducible tautological statements to defend your point.

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My wife loves me.

You can empirically support this through her actions, facial expressions, words, etc.  You could even hypothetically run a brain scan.  This isn't a very strong example.

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If A=B and B=C then A=C.

And you think the specific existence of a deity with a very particular set of attributes and actions can be axiomized just because the most basic axioms of all mathematics can as well?   :lol:

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None of these things can be empirically verified.

Actually, they all can.  That if A=B and B=C then A=C can be observed everyday.

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And yet I hold to all of them as true.  Not only that, if some of them were not true, then scientific pursuit itself would be useless.

So because some things are allegedly unsupportable (even though all of your examples are rather lacking), that means that you can invent any entity you want and call it rational?   :rolleyes:

Let's go back to invisible flying unicorns, then.  You can't empirically verify them...but you can't empirically verify that you can draw a straight line between any two points on a plane, right?  So that means that they must exist!
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 11, 2013, 07:04:40 PM
You drop a pencil.  It falls accelerating at [roughly] 9.8 m/s^2.  You add five and six.  You get eleven.

Every time?  Presumably.  Provable?  No.

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You know you don't have much of an argument when you have to fall back on the most irreducible tautological statements to defend your point.

Prove that our rationale--the apparent result of random processes and natural selection--is trustworthy.

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You can empirically support this through her actions, facial expressions, words, etc.  You could even hypothetically run a brain scan.  This isn't a very strong example.

I guess you'd have to start by proving that love exists.  Is that possible, scientifically.  Then you'd have to prove that actions, facial expressions, words, etc., are representations of what that "love" is, and show how there is no ulterior motive.

Come on, this isn't difficult.  You cannot prove that one person loves another.

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And you think the specific existence of a deity with a very particular set of attributes and actions can be axiomized just because the most basic axioms of all mathematics can as well?   :lol:

Um, no.  Are you deliberately misunderstanding?

I said that not everything that we accept is true can be proven scientifically.  You asked for examples.  I am giving you some.  Please try to stay on track.  I can understand how, if you are actually processing what I am posting, this could be challenging a hardcore naturalist.

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Actually, they all can.

Actually, no, none of them can.

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That if A=B and B=C then A=C can be observed everyday.

You can observe examples of this.  You cannot prove it mathematically, logically, or scientifically.  It is an axiom.  It's not provable.

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So because some things are allegedly unsupportable (even though all of your examples are rather lacking), that means that you can invent any entity you want and call it rational?   :rolleyes:

Oh.  Wait.  Is that what I said?

Oh!  No, I didn't!

Are you trying to be an idiot, or does it just come naturally?

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Let's go back to invisible flying unicorns, then.  You can't empirically verify them...but you can't empirically verify that you can draw a straight line between any two points on a plane, right?  So that means that they must exist!

Oh, is that what I siad?  No.  What I said was that we accept things that are true than cannot be empirically verified.  I supported it.  Now you're leaping to all kinds of conclusions.

Do you know what a "straw man argument" is?  I can provide a link for a definition, if you'd like...

Please respond to what I am saying and not what I am not saying.  I haven't been a dick to you.  Please don't act like one to me.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on May 11, 2013, 07:09:41 PM
Every time?  Presumably.  Provable?  No.

You don't understand what empirical evidence means.  You certainly don't understand what "scientific proof" entails.  Hint: all scientific theories "suffer" from the flaw you just pointed out, ranging from Newton's laws of motion to every study ever conducted.  They all entail inductive reasoning that technically don't constitute mathematical proof.  Scientists construct models that explain observations and experimental data.

So yes, all of your examples can be proven scientifically.  You just don't understand what this actually means.

If you actually meant "you can take something as true without mathematical, deductive proof", then sure.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on May 11, 2013, 07:37:39 PM
You don't understand what empirical evidence means.  You certainly don't understand what "scientific proof" entails.  Hint: all scientific theories "suffer" from the flaw you just pointed out, ranging from Newton's laws of motion to every study ever conducted.  They all entail inductive reasoning that technically don't constitute mathematical proof.  Scientists construct models that explain observations and experimental data.

So yes, all of your examples can be proven scientifically.  You just don't understand what this actually means.

If you actually meant "you can take something as true without mathematical, deductive proof", then sure.

See, but that's where we the following:  the universe is rational and can be rationally understood.  This can be broken down into:

1)  The universe follows consistent patterns that we can codify as "laws."
2)  Our brains are capable of understanding these patterns and we can trust the rationale of our minds.

These are foundational.  We presume them to be true.

We cannot prove them.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 16, 2013, 02:01:08 PM
I'm sorry guys for the long delay, but I'm feeling bored right now, so...

Every time?  Presumably.  Provable?  No.

The scientific method is based on empiricism.  You don't "prove" anything, you establish theories to explain observations.  Gravity is just a theory, but to argue that we therefore shouldn't live our lives on the assumption that it exists is just absurd.

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Prove that our rationale--the apparent result of random processes and natural selection--is trustworthy.

On the basis of whether or not it makes successful predictions.  Evolutionary Theory had been enormously successful in predicting observations, and hence many of its principles are used by biologists and biochemists.  Creationism/intelligent design are not falsifiable and make no working predictions.

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I guess you'd have to start by proving that love exists.  Is that possible, scientifically.  Then you'd have to prove that actions, facial expressions, words, etc., are representations of what that "love" is, and show how there is no ulterior motive.

Come on, this isn't difficult.  You cannot prove that one person loves another.

You cannot prove that the sun revolves around the Earth.  You cannot prove that what you see is real.  Science deals with probability.  Outside of possibly mathematics nothing can really be known for "certain".

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Um, no.  Are you deliberately misunderstanding?

I said that not everything that we accept is true can be proven scientifically.  You asked for examples.  I am giving you some.  Please try to stay on track.  I can understand how, if you are actually processing what I am posting, this could be challenging a hardcore naturalist.

You don't really understand how the scientific method operates if you think scientific theories require "proof".

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You can observe examples of this.

That's exactly what science does...

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Oh, is that what I siad?  No.  What I said was that we accept things that are true than cannot be empirically verified.  I supported it.  Now you're leaping to all kinds of conclusions.

Do you have any idea what "empirically verified" even means?  Newton's law of universal gravitational attraction can be empirically verified.  You ridiculously suggested that it cannot be "proven" by pointing out a fundamental limitation of empiricism - well no shit sherlock, that's like criticizing a math equation because it's not a number.
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: MFA on November 19, 2013, 04:54:24 PM
I'm sorry guys for the long delay, but I'm feeling bored right now, so...

The scientific method is based on empiricism.  You don't "prove" anything, you establish theories to explain observations.  Gravity is just a theory, but to argue that we therefore shouldn't live our lives on the assumption that it exists is just absurd.

You're right.  Nobody's suggesting that.

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On the basis of whether or not it makes successful predictions.  Evolutionary Theory had been enormously successful in predicting observations, and hence many of its principles are used by biologists and biochemists.  Creationism/intelligent design are not falsifiable and make no working predictions.

Circular.  "It makes successful predictions."  How do you evaluate whether or not a prediction is successful?  Do you...um...use your own rationale?

What you're ultimately saying is that the legitimacy of our own rationale requires the use of our own rationale.

That has absolutely nothing to do with creationism or intelligent design.  Why did you bring that up?

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You cannot prove that the sun revolves around the Earth.  You cannot prove that what you see is real.  Science deals with probability.  Outside of possibly mathematics nothing can really be known for "certain".

And of what value is that?  All you've done is put a huge hole in empiricism now.

So...do you take these "predictions of evolution" on faith?

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You don't really understand how the scientific method operates if you think scientific theories require "proof".

So...what do they require?

They require evidence, verifiability, and, as I have argued from the beginning, a certain degree of "faith."

You've already said that "nothing can be known for certain" and now you are implying that the scientific method does not require "proof."  So...

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That's exactly what science does...

Yes, it observes examples and makes predictions.  Based on...?

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Do you have any idea what "empirically verified" even means?  Newton's law of universal gravitational attraction can be empirically verified.  You ridiculously suggested that it cannot be "proven" by pointing out a fundamental limitation of empiricism - well no shit sherlock, that's like criticizing a math equation because it's not a number.

Well, "sherlock," I'm not the one that's trying to argue that empiricism is infallible when it comes to establishing or verifying what is true.  It looks like you have argued yourself in a giant circle until you have agreed with my original premises.  You're just unwilling to acknowledge that you're left with some kind of "faith."
Title: Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
Post by: Sci Fi Fan on November 19, 2013, 07:06:42 PM
Circular.  "It makes successful predictions."  How do you evaluate whether or not a prediction is successful?  Do you...um...use your own rationale?

No, we see that the evolution of fossils happens to follow a sequential order in which more recent fossils down a certain line more closely resemble the current relevant species.  This is not explained or even remotely compatible with creationism.  More complicated evidence includes this (ignore the provocative title lol):

How To Shut Up Pesky Creationists (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dK3O6KYPmEw#)

Something predicted by evolution over a century ago just happens to be true.  Not something you can say about creationism that is purely reactive, rationalizing itself to fit with evidence that always contradicts older incarnations.


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They require evidence, verifiability, and, as I have argued from the beginning, a certain degree of "faith."

Why do you keep bringing up the faith argument?  Let's assume for a moment that this is true.  So what?  It applies to everything in science, history, religion, and whatever - why is this relevant to evolution?

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You've already said that "nothing can be known for certain" and now you are implying that the scientific method does not require "proof."  So...

Yes.  It requires that it fit the known evidence and successfully predict new evidence.  This technically proves nothing; this technically does not prove general relativity.  What are you trying to establish here, aside that evolution suffers the same "flaw" as every piece of knowledge outside mathematics?

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Yes, it observes examples and makes predictions.  Based on...?

 :blink: On the evidence...of which there is an unimaginable quantity of for evolution.  We know more about the evolution of life than we do about gravity - although any theoretical physicist will tell you that is not saying much.

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Well, "sherlock," I'm not the one that's trying to argue that empiricism is infallible when it comes to establishing or verifying what is true.

Show me where I state it's infallible.  I make it very clear that it is fallible.  But unless if you want to go live in a secluded rainforest in the Amazons you have accepted that modern empiricism (science) works.  And even then you'd quickly learn to trust your empirical knowledge if you want to survive for any time at all.