El Diego:The real thing I
find funny is how Kangaroo tries so hard to be like Dawkins, except he
replaces relevancy and facts with elaborately worded insults.
Obviously you aren't that familiar with Dawkins.
Kangaroo Love:Dawkins is the champion of condescending insults.
His group calls themselves the 'Brights'. Since his father was a South African Apartheidist I think it's no coincidence it rhymes with 'Whites'. I don't get the whole 'New Atheism' thing. Atheists used to just be the intellectual elite who were unconcerned with religious people, now they've turned it into a f***ing religion, trying to convert all the believers. It's funny how Dawkins makes all sorts of claims about human nature in his arguments against religion, only to not realize that belief is belief. It's human nature that's sh*t; religion is merely a symptom.
I think it's good that he considers the philosophical implications of the falseness of religion.
Atheism has a following in most wealthy countries, which is of course affected by the same sheep effect that religion is as the following grows. Isn't believing in something reasonable like Atheism because your community does better than believing in magic?
To call Atheism a religion is wrong because it doesn't suppose the supernatural, but I can see what you mean.
The main problem I have with it is people like Sam Harris who tell us we can derive morality from science. It's the dumbest thing I've ever heard. The scientific method can only tell us about causal relationships; it can tell us the outcome of our actions. But it can't tell us what to value.
The other thing is that we can explain the behavior of the brain as matter, but no one can cross the Leibnizian gap and explain qualitative consciousness itself scientifically. Some choose to simply say that we aren't conscious just so they don't have to explain it, which is far more retarded that believing in creationism (see Descartes). Personally it seems obvious to me that consciousness is merely another aspect of the physical world that we are unable to observe; token-token identity with matter. But the placing of science on a pedestal convinces people to reject any such considerations dogmatically, simply because the scientific method is incapable of dealing with the problem.
Morality can't be derived from science. The morals of humans are derived from our genetics and reinforced by social influence in upbringing. It's a mistake to try and look for religious answers in science and I don't think that represents the vast majority, at least until the more religious-minded people start to join the Atheist craze. Also, considering studies have proven nearly identical morals based on moral questions for all religious and non-religious denominations, most Atheists can tell that it's genetic.
About the Leibnizian gap, that's just something we haven't put enough research into, like most neuroscientific problems. It's unfair to reject something like that as unobservable when so much headway is currently being made regarding the human brain. If anything, I think that scientists have been happy to accept the unexplainable (for the time being) in the past. For example, some of the critical and unexplainable assumptions made in physics such as dark matter.
Oh, I know most atheist don't believe it, but that is what Sam Harris is writing a book on. Look it up. He's an idiot and gives a bad name to atheists everywhere.
As far as the Leibnizian gap goes... the problem works like this; imagine you can (shrink down and go inside the brain)-the old version/(completely know how the brain works)-newer version; even then you still wouldn't see the person's qualitative experience. You have your own qualitative experience, and the other person has his/hers. We only know that we are conscious, and no one else. This is just because we are the stuff that is conscious. I don't see how neuroscience could ever overcome this. Although it could completely explain the brain in terms of the behavior of observed matter. You could make the objection that this is an argument from lack of imagination (as the Churchlands do), but I don't much care for that objection in general. Isn't VALIDITY an argument from lack of imagination? After all, the validity of an argument is merely defined as the consequent necessarily following from the antecedent.
I don't think neuroscience can explain the qualitative aspect of consciousness simply because it is ontologically identical with what we perceive to be the matter of the brain. We can only experience matter as a representation in our own minds, to perceive the qualitative nature of matter would mean that the matter we were studying would have to be subjectively present to our own consciousness, which sounds nuts unless you believe in yogic perception or something like that. Actually people have argued (David Chalmers) that consciousness exists on the quantum level, and so it behaves a bit more eerily than we would think according to classic biological models, while still operating within the realm of physics. It's an interesting idea, and would actually make room for the idea of an afterlife/reincarnation that is compatible with physics. Too bad it's virtually impossible to prove either way.
What is happiness but the feeling of power increasing, and obstacles being overcome? -Nietzsche