Atheism and universal loneliness

Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by wynn, May 30, 2012.

  1. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    I've taken 24 hours to think about what I want to say. The response I drafted yesterday was quite different.


    For the most part I agree. On the one hand that was part of the point that I was making with that statement. On the other hand, I was also wanting to distinguish (or make allowances for) between situations where an individual is emotionally invested in a relationship, and situations where although an individual might not be emotionally invested in a relationship, they might have some other kind of investment in it. For example, a couple who marry for a green-card, a couple who are still together 'for the children', or a couple who are still together simply because they're better off financially than they would be seperated or divorced.

    Of course, in each of these situations the individuals within the relationship have some kind of investment in the relationship - just not neccessarily emotional, they also have an emotional investment in something they gain from the relationship - just not neccessarily something that's dependent on trust.

    But all of that is something of a seperate issue to the implication that "that anybody who is hurt by being cheated upon is thereby necessarily some kind of doormat", and my point regarding emotional investment and the reasonablness of inference.
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  3. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    Right, but in all of those cases, for one of the "partners" to go and date/screw somebody else would not be "cheating." There is no obligation to monogamy implied by those arrangments, and so no question of "cheating" or "betrayal" to consider.

    When we say "relationship" in the context of "cheating," the implication is that we're referring to a romantic, monogamous relationship. That there exist any number of other types of "relationships" (boss/employee, teacher/student, friends, business partners, etc.) is neither here nor there, when it comes to "cheating." I realize you're looking at corner cases wherein the relationship has many of the superficial features of a romantic relationship, but I think that is a distraction. Absent a romantic, monogamous relationship, there can be no such thing as "cheating." That is the only context in which such is defined.

    Yeah, that stuff was so out of left-field that it left me wondering if wynn wasn't a victim of cheating, and developed this sort of jaded attitude as a defense mechanism. Or, possibly, a perpatrator of cheating who has clung to this idea as a self-serving rationalization. It's sure strange, either way.
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  5. SciWriter Valued Senior Member

    A. Anything always having been is impossible, for then there is no definition point, which is still true even if it is claimed to somehow be timeless. William Lane Craig got this far, noting that the universe had to have a beginning, but he forgot that all existents must have a beginning, whether electrons, ‘Gods’, or whatnot—any entity. Thus, they must be created, and thus cannot be the First and Fundamental. Yet, there is nothing to make any entity of, which we will get to later. Nothing is not anything.

    “Wait!” Some might say. “Why not forever entities? Say more.”

    Well, then what would determine its amount, its form, its properties, its ‘where’, its ‘when’, etc. In other words, the entity(s) would have been already made and defined without ever having been made and defined in the first place (that never was). They would be unmakeable, and thus unbreakable, as in having no parts, almost as in string theory, or maybe that is what they say.

    So, again, entities must be created.

    “Say more.”

    Then the basic entities hereabouts or the same making up composites are the same exact ones as there always were, which is fine, but that is a set, certain amount, and they operate in specific ways; yet, why not more or less of them, etc?

    B. OK, so what creates the base entities? Not by another entity, for then we were not really speaking of the base entity. So, they have to come from no place, which is a lack of anything (nothing). Some might call this ‘causeless’. We already knew there was nothing to make anything of, so we are not surprised. And we’ve already shown that entities cannot have been forever, which was even enough by itself to lead us here.

    “Well, OK, but it would be nice to confirm it.”

    C. The zero-balance necessity begets the conservation laws of energy, momentum, and angular momentum—of point-of-view invariance, as discovered by Noether.

    There is action and reaction; conservation cannot be violated. Every particle is exactly at the place it should be at, and can not be even an iota off of its mark, as well as its energy-mass, etc. All credits and debits must sum to zero, to infinite precision. There is no skimming off the top.

    Nature demonstrates a zero-sum balance of opposites, such as with gravity vs mass, polarity of charge, matter and anti-matter.

    Here is a list. Of course, some may not much matter, or just be higher happenings, but I think what I’ve already mentioned carries the bulk of it.

    The list of balances:

    1. The positive kinetic energy of stuff vs the negative potential energy of gravity.

    2. Positive vs negative polarity of electric charge.

    3. Matter vs antimatter.

    4. Everything vs nothing, each holding the same information content.

    5. Fields of space vs particles in space, fields making particles maybe, and perhaps particles making fields.

    6. The largest quantity vs the smallest infinitesimal, with our finite reality at the mid-point.

    7. The future vs the past, with our ‘now’ at the mid-point.

    8. The strong nuclear force vs the weak nuclear force, the strong for stability, the weak for changeability.

    9. Light making matter vs matter making light, each requiring the other to be previous.

    10. Stellar ignition perhaps requires previous star material.

    11. Electric force transforming into magnetic force into electric force, etc., as a self-regenerating wave.

    12. ‘Now’ becoming ‘past’ and transforming into ‘future’ via movement of matter through space.

    13. Standing waves going both inward and outward at the same time, if they do.

    14. Compression to nothing vs dispersion to nothing.

    15. Positive vs negative curvatures of space, if there be such.

    16. Virtual particles popping in and out of existence, always in pairs, with not enough energy to create them, to boot.

    17. Two and only two stable charged matter particles in free space, the electron and the proton, and no uncharged matter particles. Only one stable energy particle in free space, the photon, neutral (or both positive and negative together), and no charged energy particles.

    18. Color wheel opposites.

    19. Male/female.

    20. Mass/energy transition.

    21. Wave/particle transition.

    97. General efficiency, such as only three primary colors making up all the rest.

    98. All oppositional-transitional schemes joining, such as the 4 fundamental forces having the strong vs weak in opposition and the electric to magnetic in transition, being having space vs matter in opposition and past to future in transition.

    99. On/off, here/there, up/down, and all that kind of stuff.

    Any more?
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  7. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    It seems then that our disagreement is solely one of definitions. In this instance it seems I may be taking "Relationship" and "Cheating" in an overly broad sense (or perhaps overly narrow). Note that all of the examples of relationships that I gave were examples of marriage or de-facto relationships with the implication then being one of equating cheating with extramarital sex regardless of the presence or absence of the expectation of exclusivity.

    I do agree though that when two people get together in a casual relationship based on physical gratification then it seems difficult to consider sex outside that relationship to be cheating, because there is no expectation of exclusivity in the first place.

    Having said that, I have some half formed thought that I'm having difficulty extrapolating into words (it's lunch time here) around couples benefits, relationships of convenience, and benefit fraud.

    But yeah, as I said in the first instance, I agree with your point.
  8. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    What if time is circular?

    An ant walking along a 1 dimensional hula hoop would claim 'this line must have an end and a beginning, else what would define it'?

    I'm not claiming it is, I'm simply saying you can't establish a premise, then base everything else on it until the premise is granted. I don't grant it.

    As a matter of fact, this is demonstrably untrue.
    Particles have a very definable uncertainty about their position and their momentum. This is fundamental to the structure of the universe. It is called the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. And it defines exactly how we cannot have infinite precision.

    You list a whole bunch of things with a property (that they come in opposing pairs). You conclude that everything must have that property.

    If I listed a hundred red cars, would that mean there can be no non-red cars in the universe?

    Gravity and mass are certainly not polar opposites.

    As a matter of fact, gravity is an excellent example of a fundamental force (of which there are only four, and between those four, they describe the universe entirely) that has no counterpart at all.

    I won't go on.

    What you've been creating is called a tautology. A simple example of tautology is 'firetrucks are always red because the colour that firetrucks always are, is red.' It uses its own premise to try to make its conclusion.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2012
  9. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    My point is that so far, your side has not provided any reasoning as to the basis for the individualism that you propose.

    You seem to take this individualism for granted; while I am questioning it.
  10. SciWriter Valued Senior Member


    There are no 1-dimensionals in reality. There would be no width for the ant to walk on, just length.

    The 3 fundamental forces are electric, magnetic, weak and strong (nuclear).
  11. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    The reasoning is
    1] Occam's Razor and
    2] The Null Hypothesis.

    In both cases the onus is on the claimant (you) to provide compelling evidence that things are more complicated than they need to be.

    This is not meant to be flippant, but do you also question unicorns and faeries? Probably not. You'd want some acceptable evidence that they exist before believing in them, wouldn't you? What if half the people in your class believed in them? Would that be enough for you to jump on that wagon?

    But seriously, read up on Occam's Razor and the Null Hypothesis. They describe pretty well how non-theists think.

    In case it comes up again, consider this as "our side" having provided our reasoning.

    Nothing wrong with questioning it. But do keep in mind that many people have given it their consideration, and are satisfied with their answers. Just because you are still in the questioning phase doesn't mean other people haven't given it just as much thought, yes?
  12. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    So, basically, you're saying that individualism is justified because you see no reason not to doubt it?

    So your individualism is not something you had developed on your own from non-individualism, but something you deem has always existed anyway?


    I see no problem with individualism as long as it pertains to mundane matters.

    But when it comes to topics such as God or the meaning of life, then, given the all-overarching, all-contextualizing nature of these topics, individualism doesn't seem plausible anymore.

    So I'd just like to see some reasoning for how people have arrived at individualism pertaining to those bigger topics.

    To "choose one's meaning of life" is a paradox - since necessarily, the meaning of life is something that contextualizes everything else, including that (supposed) choice of one's meaning of life.
    To "choose one's meaning of life" is like trying to pull oneself out of a swamp by one's own hair.

    One cannot "choose one's meaning of life" in the same manner that one can choose a car or a pair of shoes.
  13. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    Yes they can. The first step down that road is to realize that you have a choice in the matter. This is the same basic realization that distinguishes a victim from a survivor.
  14. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Where did this 'individualism' word come from? We were talking about why atheists have no need for God. I have said noting about individualism. I would like ypou to define the word as you mean it before I have anything to say about it.

    That is a tautology - circular logic. You think it must be important because you think it exists. It has not been granted that it exists.

    Just provided it. Occam's Razor, Null Hypothesis.

    There is no reason to invent something in the first place.

    For you. Because you define yourself by an external factor. The rest of us do not need that kind of crutch.

    Indeed one must.

    Just as you have. You chose to listen to the teachings of ... whatever teachings taught you about God. You chose to define the meaning of your life by that.
  15. SciWriter Valued Senior Member

    So-called eternity is about duration, eternal duration of time. What applies to the ant is extent, as in so-called infinity having infinite extent.

    Let us have the ant walking around on the 2D surface of a 3D sphere, for at least that is doable, although there are no true 2D surfaces without depth, plus the 2D surface of the sphere curves into the 3rd dimension, but I know what you mean.

    The extent of the 2D surface is boundless but not infinite, for the extent is some number of square centimeters.

    If there is a 3D ‘surface-volume’ of a 4D hypervolume that it contains, then 3D could be boundless, but again, not infinite.

    Still, the tiny smear, if it is, is not suddenly going to be even 1 cm away from where it has to be.

    No, I said that some may and some may not. Please pay attention. I really wanted to have faith in you, as a first impression.

    I wouldn’t list those.

    I’m surprised you haven’t heard of this. (See Stephen Hawkings, among other.)

    Already dealt with as wrong about the 4 fundamental forces, but the jury is still out on gravity as a possible 5th, as it could be a secondary effect. (See Wilczek)

    Well, you seem like a nice guy, but we are dealing with science, and some of yours is coming out wrong here, and also before with the entropy thing, so maybe not going on is a good thing. Ignore that, for I am actually a nice guy, too, but I am now losing faith in you.

    No, a tautology is like a synonym, such as “God is the Universe”, or A=B, but the universe is the universe and a void is a void, and besides, why would someone want ‘God’ to be limited and restricted to only what the universe could do?

    In fact, the whole conclusion of ‘God’ by some is used for a premise like “God could…”. Then they get into magic, invisibles, spirits, super-extra-natural, All Powerful Beings, Devils, Angels, and unprecedented exceptions, none of which can be shown to be.
  16. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

  17. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Read up on electron clouds and electron tunneling.

    And I you. But you are making unfounded assertions.

    I am fairly well-read. Gravity and mass are not opposites.

    Current mainstream physics say four. Gravity is the fourth.

    It is not my science. Perhaps you are reading the wrong books.
  18. SciWriter Valued Senior Member

    So wynn,

    Life always requires a Higher Life behind it, to create it and give it meaning, upwards in succession, I suppose, to retain the original template, but nevertheless halting instantly with Life of God not requiring LIFE behind it?


    Made by aliens? Any meaning?

    The universe came to life as us? Well, that's not bad. Took a while, but, still, wow. We know it is true, but meaning?

    We became of Forever Stuff? Any meaning?

    We and all are a distribution of Nothing? Any meaning?

    Everything happens, given mucho time, even everywhere, again and again, given mucho space, making us rather insignificant?

    Which or what is the meaning of existence?

    If it has a meaning, are we then, like, not free, being bound to it?
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2012
  19. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member


    Haven't read the whole thread, just parts.

    You believe religion offers you hope and meaning to life, and hence can make you happy. And that atheism offers no hope and no meaning to life, and hence atheism can only offer unhappiness.

    You are partly correct. I believe suicide rates of atheists are higher than theists, for example.

    When everything else is said and done on the differences between theists and atheists we are left with the root. The theist believes that death is a magical gateway to a utopian paradise where he will live eternally and happy. The atheist believes that death is simply permanent non-existence.

    We can contrast the two fundamentally opposing views and see how one can inspire hope and perhaps meaning whereas the other seems like a short term pointless and hopeless existence. From this it is not so difficult to see why some 75% of the world population believe in some form of religion.

    So you may well be happier than the average atheist - so what?

    Facts -

    1. There is no factual support for any religious belief - what you believe remains as human created imaginative fantasy.

    2. There is no inherent rule or law that says that reality or life must be hopeful or full of happiness.
  20. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    Just wow.

    Based on what do you conclude that I am religious, or a theist?????

    You really read a lot into what people say.


    I mean, really.
  21. Cris In search of Immortality Valued Senior Member

    I went by tone and context - am I wrong?
  22. Balerion Banned Banned

    Wynn, everyone thinks you're a theist when they first encounter you. Obviously the problem is on your end, not ours.
  23. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    Clearly, you should have read more.
    You are very wrong.

    Not even remotely.

    Just ask the resident theists - they generally consider me an atheist.

    The problem is with those people (be they theists or atheists) who desire to neatly box and label others, based on as little information as they like.

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