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Philosophy, Science, & The Unexplained - Main Thread



Golden_Vimana

Skilled Investigator
This thread is for examining questions about the unexplained from a philosophical and/or scientific perspective. While this can include religious and mystical subject matter, please be as objective as possible. This is not a forum for sermonizing. To start off, here's a video featuring Alvin Plantinga, who was recently mentioned by an infrequent poster @smcder in this thread.


This will probably stir some controversy. My first response to one of Plantinga's video's is here: https://www.theparacast.com/forum/threads/october-20-2013-jerome-clark.14172/page-3#post-173274

To continue from the previous thread: The key point for me is that Plantinga asserts that belief in God is only rational if it is true that God exists. There are some other issues he brings into the mix that I'm not entirely comfortable with. But this one point on truth doesn't seem to be escapable.

So the real question then becomes, how do we tell whether or not God exists? We've been through that here on the forum a number of times. Plantinga argues in the video above that his personal experience is sufficient reason for him to believe. Is that really a supportable position? I think that for him ( personally ) it is. But of what relevance is that for the rest of us?

“Evolution doesn’t care about true belief.”

Bingooo

The average person believes in some form of a God. Atheism although more popular now than in the past, is not the norm. That being the case - if so many people, all the product of millions of years of evolution believe in God - might that propensity itself be a result of faulty perception programmed into us by evolution?

I hold firm to the idea that - spirituality, for severe lack of a better term, doesn’t necessitate a God. Companies have CEO’s. Businesses have managers. Bands have front men. We have an expectancy for there to be an alpha component in all social dynamics. We then map that out into the metaphysical. I don’t think it’s necessarily our fault though - organized religion from its inception was well aware of the psychological effect their presence had, and how to exploit archetypes. When I was a kid, I used to manipulate my little sister into doing things I wanted her to do by simply lying and saying “Dad said so.”.
 

Constance

Paranormal Adept
“Evolution doesn’t care about true belief.”

Bingooo

The average person believes in some form of a God. Atheism although more popular now than in the past, is not the norm. That being the case - if so many people, all the product of millions of years of evolution believe in God - might that propensity itself be a result of faulty perception programmed into us by evolution?

I hold firm to the idea that - spirituality, for severe lack of a better term, doesn’t necessitate a God. Companies have CEO’s. Businesses have managers. Bands have front men. We have an expectancy for there to be an alpha component in all social dynamics. We then map that out into the metaphysical. I don’t think it’s necessarily our fault though - organized religion from its inception was well aware of the psychological effect their presence had, and how to exploit archetypes. When I was a kid, I used to manipulate my little sister into doing things I wanted her to do by simply lying and saying “Dad said so.”.

Hello @Golden_Vimana. I have been away from the paracast forums for quite a long time and have not met you in the past. I wonder if you would clarify the meaning of this statement in your post --

"We have an expectancy for there to be an alpha component in all social dynamics. We then map that out into the metaphysical."

Thanks.
 

Golden_Vimana

Skilled Investigator
Hello @Golden_Vimana. I have been away from the paracast forums for quite a long time and have not met you in the past. I wonder if you would clarify the meaning of this statement in your post --

"We have an expectancy for there to be an alpha component in all social dynamics. We then map that out into the metaphysical."

Thanks.

Hello constance. I’d be happy to.

“Take me to your leader.” - a sci-fi trope that says a lot about how we think.

We expect groups and organizations to be shaped like a pyramid. We expect there to be a hierarchy. When you have a dispute with a cashier at Walmart, you ask for the manager. I’m not saying any of this in a pejorative sense - I simply mean, whenever we encounter a group, organization or civilization of any type, societal norms have us expect there to be somebody “in charge”. We can even observe it when it’s just two people. There’s generally one person who’s more assertive, while the other is more passive. Since we’re steeped in that dynamic from birth, we then expect the same rule to apply when it comes to transcendent realms, or however you want to refer to consciousness that exists outside the limitations of what we can readily sense. If high schools have principals, and basketball teams have coaches, well then the universe must have - God - right? I think the answer is no, and I think some higher ups within organized religion are well aware of this, taking advantage of our nature.
 

Constance

Paranormal Adept
Hello constance. I’d be happy to.

“Take me to your leader.” - a sci-fi trope that says a lot about how we think.

We expect groups and organizations to be shaped like a pyramid. We expect there to be a hierarchy. When you have a dispute with a cashier at Walmart, you ask for the manager. I’m not saying any of this in a pejorative sense - I simply mean, whenever we encounter a group, organization or civilization of any type, societal norms have us expect there to be somebody “in charge”. We can even observe it when it’s just two people. There’s generally one person who’s more assertive, while the other is more passive. Since we’re steeped in that dynamic from birth, we then expect the same rule to apply when it comes to transcendent realms, or however you want to refer to consciousness that exists outside the limitations of what we can readily sense. If high schools have principals, and basketball teams have coaches, well then the universe must have - God - right? I think the answer is no, and I think some higher ups within organized religion are well aware of this, taking advantage of our nature.



Thanks for your reply, @Golden_Vimana.
Your speculation about how our evolved and evolving species gradually developed an idea or concept of a ‘God’ or higher creative intelligence behind the manifestions of nature as we have experienced nature in succeeding historical epochs is interesting but not persuasive for me. It seems to be based in modern sociology rather than in anthropological research, the latter being essential to our understanding of our species ideations and behaviors in its long historical development.

Granted that in our own time we see increasingly top-down organization and control of human lives and human existence in general, but there have been innumerable causes and influences for the engrossment of power in the hands of current politico-economic leadership on our planet today. No doubt early humans turned to ‘leaders’ of their small communities to manage both successful hunts to acquire food for the group and survival in general. In doing so they would have been guided by preconscious orientations inherited from the evolution of species leading to our own – and supplemented by observations of the group behaviors of species other than our own.

Simultaneous with motivations for basic survival, early humans also experienced the dawning and development of affection and caring for their mates and offspring, and even extended this capability for concern (and regret) to the animals they killed to sustain their own social groups. The long record of these affective ideations and behaviors toward other living beings is striking and still operative in so-called ‘primitive’ peoples occupying ‘first peoples’ territories alongside our over-developed national power structures consuming the planet.

My own approach is based in phenomenological philosophy, cultural anthropology, and the contemporary interdisciplinary field of Consciousness Studies. If you are interested in this approach, the following paper will likely be clarifying.

“Toward a second-person neuroscience,” Toward a second-person neuroscience [Target Article]

An extract:

“. . . 1.2 An alternative account of social knowing

Before the rise of recent social cognition research there was already an important body of theory and research proposing that, typically, when relating to one another, people are not engaged in a tortuous process of inferences and theorizing about one another, but immediately experience the other as a subject (see Asch 1952; Heider & Simmel 1944; Runeson & Frykholm 1983; Schutz1972; Thinès et al. 1991). This approach drew upon Gestalt theory and phenomenology. Here is Solomon Asch's lucid statement of this position:

“The quality of their actions imbues persons with living reality. When we say that a person is in pain, we see his body as feeling. We do not need to ‘impute’ consciousness to others if we directly perceive the qualities of consciousness in the qualities of action. Once we see an act that is skillful, clumsy, alert, or reckless, it is superfluous to go ‘behind’ it to its conscious substrate, for consciousness has revealed itself in the act (Asch1952, p.158).”


ps, in short, on this view consciousness has evolved and developed in the evolution of species in changing mileaus of individual and social lived experience on this planet (and doubtless on innumerable others). That which is experienced from one historical time and place to another replaces to degrees what has formerly been assumed, for better or worse. Human consciousness has long been embedded in radical existential temporality, first sensed and recognized by our prehistorical ancestors among whom the first stages of ontological thinking emerged as evidenced in their burial practices and other symbolic behaviors. Phenomenology attempts to ground an understanding of consciousness in lived experience as it has developed over our species' historical evolution and in our expressions of our sense of the being and Being of what-is.
 

henris42

Paranormal Maven
BTW,

For those of you who are scientifically inclined, get this book:

..Its university level 101 on astronomy. You can read it by skipping the math ok, it explains extremely well modern astronomy and known phenomena.
 

Golden_Vimana

Skilled Investigator
Thanks for your reply, @Golden_Vimana.
Your speculation about how our evolved and evolving species gradually developed an idea or concept of a ‘God’ or higher creative intelligence behind the manifestions of nature as we have experienced nature in succeeding historical epochs is interesting but not persuasive for me. It seems to be based in modern sociology rather than in anthropological research, the latter being essential to our understanding of our species ideations and behaviors in its long historical development.

Granted that in our own time we see increasingly top-down organization and control of human lives and human existence in general, but there have been innumerable causes and influences for the engrossment of power in the hands of current politico-economic leadership on our planet today. No doubt early humans turned to ‘leaders’ of their small communities to manage both successful hunts to acquire food for the group and survival in general. In doing so they would have been guided by preconscious orientations inherited from the evolution of species leading to our own – and supplemented by observations of the group behaviors of species other than our own.

Simultaneous with motivations for basic survival, early humans also experienced the dawning and development of affection and caring for their mates and offspring, and even extended this capability for concern (and regret) to the animals they killed to sustain their own social groups. The long record of these affective ideations and behaviors toward other living beings is striking and still operative in so-called ‘primitive’ peoples occupying ‘first peoples’ territories alongside our over-developed national power structures consuming the planet.

My own approach is based in phenomenological philosophy, cultural anthropology, and the contemporary interdisciplinary field of Consciousness Studies. If you are interested in this approach, the following paper will likely be clarifying.

“Toward a second-person neuroscience,” Toward a second-person neuroscience [Target Article]

An extract:

“. . . 1.2 An alternative account of social knowing

Before the rise of recent social cognition research there was already an important body of theory and research proposing that, typically, when relating to one another, people are not engaged in a tortuous process of inferences and theorizing about one another, but immediately experience the other as a subject (see Asch 1952; Heider & Simmel 1944; Runeson & Frykholm 1983; Schutz1972; Thinès et al. 1991). This approach drew upon Gestalt theory and phenomenology. Here is Solomon Asch's lucid statement of this position:

“The quality of their actions imbues persons with living reality. When we say that a person is in pain, we see his body as feeling. We do not need to ‘impute’ consciousness to others if we directly perceive the qualities of consciousness in the qualities of action. Once we see an act that is skillful, clumsy, alert, or reckless, it is superfluous to go ‘behind’ it to its conscious substrate, for consciousness has revealed itself in the act (Asch1952, p.158).”


ps, in short, on this view consciousness has evolved and developed in the evolution of species in changing mileaus of individual and social lived experience on this planet (and doubtless on innumerable others). That which is experienced from one historical time and place to another replaces to degrees what has formerly been assumed, for better or worse. Human consciousness has long been embedded in radical existential temporality, first sensed and recognized by our prehistorical ancestors among whom the first stages of ontological thinking emerged as evidenced in their burial practices and other symbolic behaviors. Phenomenology attempts to ground an understanding of consciousness in lived experience as it has developed over our species' historical evolution and in our expressions of our sense of the being and Being of what-is.
Thanks Constance! Very extensive and informative.

Simply put, I think Western religion’s DNA is encoded with an overtly patriarchal and glaringly anthropomorphic paradigm. I can provide what feels like an infinite list of examples, in texts, scripture, doctrine, sociological observation, and in practice. That’s really all I’m saying. It’s not really meant to be persuasive, just a statement of what seems subjectively obvious to me.
 

Raleigh

Paranormal Novice
Actually, when we consider the data related to these experiences, we can come to this inescapable conclusion that a small number of people are indeed having a conversation with an intelligence claims to be God, and intelligences claims to be Aliens and Spirits. This actually explains why they believe in the existence of these intelligences in the first place and why they defend their point of view. One thing you can notice is that people who communicate with God find claims made by people who communicate with these so-called aliens and spirits as absurd claims, and vise-versa. However, they all claim the same, which is that they're communicating with an intelligence. For instance, this is what Yacov Rambsel had to say about his own experience with God:


Some people who come to Sid Roth's channel even claim that God teleported them instantly over long distances. These are experiences that you can have with the help of advanced technologies only. You may listen to what Ken Peters had to say about his experience:

I Was Supernaturally Transported to Rio de Janeiro! | Ken Peters - YouTube

That's not all, you could clearly see that people who come to these conclusions were having the same experiences, and these experiences can be traced back to history. What you see below is a summary of the reported phenomena:


Connections.png

kTkvS6fh0B.png


To know what these experiences are, you may follow this link:

https://insightfulreports.org/resea...-those-who-are-still-searching-the-truth.html

Some of you might even know that John Keel was making this observation:

[Concerning a prophecy of a holocaust on December 24, 1967] “Meanwhile, mediums, telepaths, sensitives, and UFO contactees throughout the world were all reporting identical messages. There was definitely going to be an unprecedented event on December 24, 1967. Ashtar was talking through Ouija boards to people who had never before heard the name. Another busy entity named Orion was spreading the word. The curious thing about these messages was that they were all phrased in the same manner, no matter what language was being used. They all carried the same warning. …Many predictions of the December twenty-fourth disaster had been documented well in advance of that date. These messages came through in many different countries, from people who had no knowledge of or communication with one another. The UFO contactees received the same identical messages as the trance mediums communing with spirits. A link had been established. It was now clear (to me at least) that all of these people were tuned into a central source. My earlier speculations seemed true – the UFO entities were part of the same gigantic system. …Some of the entities were evil liars.”


Source: Operation Trojan Horse – (p.282/283)


After all, someone using advanced technology to deceive our entire civilization is another inescapable conclusion that we can arrive at when we carefully analyze this data.
 
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