Author Topic: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument  (Read 4374 times)

Offline Sci Fi Fan

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #45 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.

Offline JustKari

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #46 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? 

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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.

Offline MFA

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #47 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...

Offline MFA

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #48 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"?

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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.

Offline MFA

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #49 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...

Offline MFA

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #50 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...

Offline MFA

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #51 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?

Offline MFA

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #52 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?

Offline MFA

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #53 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.

Offline kramarat

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #54 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.

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #55 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 ?

Offline Yawn

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #56 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.

Offline Sci Fi Fan

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #57 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.


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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.

Offline IBeMe

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #58 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.

Offline Sci Fi Fan

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Re: Problems with the so-called "watchmaker" argument
« Reply #59 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.

 

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