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  • A very deep conversation with Cacophonaut

    19 juin 2009, 8h40m

    Every step in life is a journey. Here's one step I've shared with a last.fm user Cacophonaut and for that I thank him:

    It began with this in the discussion Agree/disagree on Entensive Music Taste:

    ruscca said... "People are just one kind of animals."

    jgiuliano said... "Disagree"

    Cacophonaut said... "It is a evolutionary fact that humans are just another kind of animal. How are we any different? Strip us of cultural ornamentation are we are genetically 98% identical to our nearest primate relative, the ape. We just have clothes and iPods."

    jgiuliano said... "Genetically we may be animals but I still disagree coz what we have is brains and really good ones, we aren't animals we are better than that and because we are we must be responsible for them."

    Following my last comment Cacophonaut left a shout on my page:

    Cacophonaut wrote...
    Humans aren't that smart. In fact they are pretty damn thick. We are talking about a species here that haven't actually developed a proper set of laws on universal physics. We are just one stage in the evolution of an upright form of primate and we are likely to look back on this era in what we laughably call "civilisation" as we now talk of the "civilisation" of prehirtoric human tribes.

    Responding to this I left Cacophonaut a PM:
    jgiuliano wrote...
    A bit of what makes us different from the animals


    this may turn out to be a bit long winded (hence this and not a shout):

    "Humans aren't that smart. In fact they are pretty damn thick. We are talking about a species here that haven't actually developed a proper set of laws on universal physics. We are just one stage in the evolution of an upright form of primate and we are likely to look back on this era in what we laughably call "civilisation" as we now talk of the "civilisation" of prehirtoric human tribes. "

    no offence, but you strike me as a pretty ignorant person if this is what you think. you're contradicting the very thing that put humans on top of the food chain - our intelligence!

    Without our intelligence, humans would have died out a long time ago. We arent strong, we arent fast, we arent a real threat to anything, most animals would make an easy lunch of us if given the chance! where our superiority comes from using our brains.

    we developed ways to get our food, we created weapons such as spears and boomerangs (in an animal sense this gave us teeth and claws). we discovered new foods and new ways to prepare it (giving us our diet). where did we go from there? we found ways to make our own food with farming and crops, we made our own shelters, we protected ourselves with clothing, and we've continued to develop new ways of doing things. every invention ever made has been by humans using their brains to either adapt something they've seen the animals doing or create something new.

    there's also other things that make us better than all the animals. we have a SOUL, we have imagination, we have creativity and for some we have faith.

    soul, we all have a soul, animals don't. we are all individual and unique in some way, shape or form. animals - while there are many species - are all the same. animals live their lives by impulse and need, if they are hungry, they eat, if they need to expand and breed they do so. humans do that as well but we take the time to enjoy the process and make it better. we're hungry, we eat, but we now have professional chefs that create new foods and tastes! we follow the need to breed and expand, but now we experiment with every fuckn' thing! humans enjoy life and try to live it in the best way they can. animals live and die without much change or desire to be better!

    we have imagination! my friend come on. do you see you pet sit down on the back step, stare at the mountain ranges and then try and write a poem about them? now i'm not an animal expert, but animals may consider things like this. if they do they never show it or try to make sense of it. MUSIC!!! nature is full of sounds, made by animals, its beautiful, but it's not music, its a call in a primitive way of communication. Humans make music and I LOVE music, we all do. no doubt you're listening to something now and how do you think that'd be possible if we didn't have imagination? if we didnt have soul or creativity?

    creativity, we always make differing forms of things, like music and art! theres always different styles and forms of everything in life! animals do the same thing every time because to them its about getting the job done and not improving anything.

    and you might think I'm taking this the wrong way with how we kill needlessly out of greed, we war with each other and perform acts that are violent and barbaric. i have one thing to say to that "human nature" its through our superiority of animals and the use of our intelligence, souls, imagination and creativity that this has ocurred. i dont agree with it at all, but it will always happen and i see a lot of animals performing much of the same acts: mockingbirds steal, lions kill and beavers destory.

    humans are a superior race to the animals, the Bible says this as well in the book of genesis. and tell me this; would you rather be an animal or a human? live your life out of impule and need without imagination of enjoyment? or take life as it comes and try to make things better?
    humans aren't great, we are far from perfection and we have still so much to learn and understand. we are just more advanced than the animals.

    you probably cant live without music so if people hadn't created music where would you be?

    don't hate me for saying this. but i wholeheartedly disagree with you.


    Cacophonaut responded with the following PM:
    Cacophonaut wrote...
    Re: A bit of what makes us different from the animals

    Firstly I resent the implication that my attitude is in some way a product of ignorance. I was going to bring out the biological arguments, but you dropped in the Biblical stuff and now I'm not even sure I want to bother. Your first comment is as ridiculous as it is irrelevant. My immediate reaction to the statement "We have a soul, animals don't" is "prove it". Neuroscience has all but proved that the only reason the human mind is apt to conceive of the soul is because it is hardwired to understand the concept of its own sentience as abstract and disembodied. This is reflected in human reactions to a dead body, because we have trouble understanding absence of mind, so we assume on a deep level that the body is dead and the mind is alive. Hence the "invention" of the concept of the "soul". I cant prove this outright but nor can you prove the existence of one, and since my explanation is the more reasonable I am assuming it to be superior.

    I would like to point out your ignorance in the field of zoology by quoting you here, if I may:

    "we are all individual and unique in some way, shape or form. animals - while there are many species - are all the same."

    This, mate, is straight up false. You couldn't have gotten more false than that. I don't know to what extent you believe this, but animals of one species are starkly different from one another in millions of subtle ways your homo-centric egotism clearly cannot conceive of. They are biologically differing, differences of colour and shape, build, agility and so on. A variability you also find to exactly the same degree in humans. Not only that, but neurological, temperamental differences of character. Some dogs are alpha-male, some submissive, some friendly, some vicious. It seems to me a product of your own ignorance of natural sciences that you seem to think all animals the same, a swarm of little autonomous drones living, eating, reproducing and dying without ever feeling anything and I think this is rather offensive.

    Lastly, don't ever bring that "the bible says" stuff into a debate with someone on two atheist messageboards because it does little to strengthen your argument, and I am once again inclined to say "prove it" when you say "its true because the Bible says so". Are you against gay people then? How about slaves? How many years can you own one before you have to set him free?

    That book you talk about is nothing more than a historical document, and if you want to live your life by the rules it lays down you are going to be a bit of a hypocrite, because half of it contradicts the other half. Ergo it cannot constitute any form of proof in any context, because if one bit is wrong (as surely one part must be if it contradicts another part) then who's to say its not all wrong? It is therefore fallible, and what is more, downright untrustworthy. Don't talk about it again to me.

    I also think you underestimate the human capacity for stupidity. So what if we have developed, over so many thousand years, what in a poor light looks like civilisation? If you strip mankind of all his developments he is no smarter than his close ancestors, and I am not talking about apes, I am talking about early humans. Can you build a lightbulb, or a car, or write a symphony? Can you grapple and defeat the complexities of great philosophy without first reading about how others have handled it? No, I wager you cannot.

    You know why? It is because as a race humans are not that clever, and subtle, memetic developments in their society, which is something that exists externally from them, have been growing and evolving for centuries. Just because a few smart humans have contributed to those developments and accreted a "culture", you see fit to assume superiority over the "beasts". I use the term in irony you understand.

    I hereby invoke Einstien; "Mankind's reach exceeds his grasp". In laymans terms, we have reached what seem to us everests of cultural, scientific and artistic development, but we still do not have the brainpower to properly use them, with wisdom and foresight and enlightenment. We split the atom, and the first thing we thought to do with that awesome, godlike power was blow things up and your calling us clever? We are not nearly there yet. A smart race would understand quantum gravity by now, its children would learn string theory in schools, it would be humanitarian and free from ignorance or intolerance such as that perpetuated by your little holy book. We would be free from superstition, stupidity, and evil. War would end, famine, poverty and genocide would be words from history. Humans can build a utopia, I really believe that, but what I do not believe is that it can happen within our lifetime, hence my misanthropy.


    jgiuliano wrote...
    Re(2): A bit of what makes us different from the animals


    The argument of the soul is moot if all you're gonna do is say 'prove it'. Of course I can't prove it, but "Neuroscience" is mans way of trying to understand how the soul works.

    Neuroscience has all but proved that the only reason the human mind is apt to conceive of the soul is because it is hardwired to understand the concept of its own sentience as abstract and disembodied.. Wrong, in an effort to understand the soul and to define it and write it down in books and as mathematical equations, people have developed Neuroscience. You said yourself that "humans are pretty thick" and with regards to how much we have learned compared with what we have yet to learn, you're right. So right in fact, that we can't be certain that what Neuroscience 'proves' is correct, it could be completely off the mark! How many times has the integrity of science been tried? For example Agent Orange, it was tested, researched even before it was released to for general use. People would say "prove it!" and the scientists could spout off numbers and figures till the cows came home, so it was approved. Then what happened? Endless birth defects that are still occurring - something numbers and figures couldn't predict. Why do we trust in things that are not guaranteed?

    Now, I'm going to use some of the "science" you seem to trust. "We are all individual and unique in some way, shape or form. Animals - while there are many species - are all the same." I stand by this; your science says that everything originated from a single cell, from a single point of matter right up to the big bang. That I do agree with, I agree with it because we can "prove" this by studying fossils and prehistoric evidence preserved throughout the centuries and trace our ancestry back to our creation. The difference in character is either a requirement to survive in nature or a difference in species. A Chihuahua is a small dog which can be very aggressive simply because it was crossbred with a more aggressive animal. You may find this offensive but animals ARE drones, we kill them out of greed, we clear their natural habitat, we poison the pests and destroy the ones over-populating and not once do they complain or try to fight back out of self preservation or spite, whales are nearly extinct because of us and yet they don't seem to complain. I disagree with all of this, it's inhumane and heartless but we can't deny that it happens.

    I will bring the "Bible says" into this. This argument is not a fight, not a show of superior intellect or wisdom; it’s not even a fight over a difference of opinion. It's a different level of understanding of faith. Dan Brown brought up this idea in his book "Angels and Demons" A priest working at CERN in Geneva. This priest was trying, not to prove that science will always prove religion wrong because it won't, he was trying to unite religion and science so they could work hand-in-hand. Everything you care to think about is covered in the Bible, and yes most of this can be countered by scientific 'facts'. But how do people prove the “missing day of Joshua” or the parting of the sea? Science hasn’t evolved enough for much of it to prove anything wrong. I’m not in the least against gay people, it’d be celebrating right along with them on the day society not just accepts them but embraces them. And the book of James, the idea of masters and slavery is a tricky one, but you’re looking at it the wrong way. Not all slave/master situations are based on control of other humans; did you ever think of people who might be indebted to someone else, through things such as money? If you look at it this way then what the Bible says can become quite relevant.
    Believe what you want about the Bible, if all you see is a historical document then that’s perfectly fine. I choose to put my trust in the Bible and Catholicism and naturally of course I’m going to use that in my arguments. Yes, the Bible does contradict itself, but that doesn’t make you a hypocrite; it’s how you choose to interpret the text. Try not to take what is written there literally, that’s impossible, instead try and understand that there are deeper meanings in the words than just the text you see. I don’t understand everything in the Bible; like for instance, The Old Testament says to pray in closed rooms with the windows and blinds closed, but then The New Testament comes along and says profess your faith to the nations and make them your disciples. What does that mean? Does it mean sometimes its not worth professing your faith to others? Or maybe it means there’s a time for keeping quiet and being loud... I don’t know but that’s part of learning.
    I underestimate our capacity for our stupidity. Maybe I do. And you’re right about stripping us of our achievements. But how do you think we have gotten to the point where we are now? By using our imaginations and coming up with new ways of doing things. That isn’t stupidity, its leaning. I can’t build a car or a light bulb and I definitely cannot write a symphony. But there are people who can. I think you forget that it’s other humans that created these things through their own intelligence. We also understand how to work off one another’s achievements and that is how we built the civilisation we are now. I will
    The people you say are not “smart humans” we are all smart! Everyone in the world has contributed to its development in some way, even you or if you haven’t than chances are you will eventually. We are superior to the beasts in a lot of ways and our being able to communicate and work together makes us superior. I might not be able to build a car, maybe you can and through me studying how you did it, eventually I would be able to as well.
    “Mankind’s reach exceeds his grasp” That’s very true. You know something; we have reached Everest’s of development! But where you’re wrong is that it’s not brainpower that gives us foresight, enlightenment or wisdom. There are countless people we’ve called geniuses through the years who have very little common sense; wisdom, foresight and enlightenment can never come from reading books and studying graphs, it came from experience and learning. You’ve misinterpreted Einstein here, he’s saying here, there are unfathomable, incredible boundaries we have yet to discover and as long as we continue to learn we will never grasp it all. We have the intelligence, what we don’t have is the wisdom and that only comes through development. We split the atom, which was very clever, we blew shit up and yes I’d be willing to say that was, not clever, but a lesson. By creating the nuclear bomb we got rid of a lot of evil in the world, and through that we now know better. You have incredibly high expectations for a race you define as stupid. Eventually we will understand quantum gravity; it’s just not time for that yet. You need to have faith, if not in God, then at least in humankind, trust that if we aren’t going to understand quantum gravity in our lifetime it’ll still happen. You forget that it wasn’t long ago that we didn’t know about compounds, atoms and chemicals, and that the world was made up of earth, air, fire and water. We have come a long way from where we began. I also believe we will never truly be free from ignorance and intolerance and we will never be fully humanitarian. The Bible never once implies we should be as such, it says try to make yourself better not perfect. Every ridge we overcome to strive for a better world there’s always another immediately after, that is the way of things. Your judgement is based on ignorance if this is what you think, we won’t ever be perfect and that is something we have to accept.
    I want to take this time as well to thankyou. You are the first person of my own age that has challenged my current view on this subject of humanity and I want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to really think about this stuff and put it together in an argument to counter yours. Just through this I’m able to better understand what it means to be a catholic person trusting in God, I’m able to appreciate that there are other people in this world that see things differently and it betters my understanding of how these people operate. In essence you’re making me a better person.

    Finally, you didn't answer my question. Would you rather be an animal or a human being? Live by impulse or live by intelligence and faith?


    Cacophonaut wrote...
    Re(3): A bit of what makes us different from the animals


    My word I really wish you had not brought religion into this, because in a scientific argument it is irrelevant. You are correct in saying the argument of a soul is moot if all I'm going to do is say "prove it", so why bring it up at all? You shouldn't argue things you cant actually prove, because where does that even get you? If you want to believe our investigations into human biology (and science in general) are an investigation into the "soul", then fine, but don't bring it to the discussion if you cant actually back it up. I could believe in the cookie monster, and that he created the earth from a giant cookie and the soul was in fact a metaphysical cookie we had to explore through science, but I wouldn't bring it up here because it is irrelevant. How can you possibly prove, if you cannot prove its existence, that people are striving through science to understand the soul? Don't come out and say "Wrong" like that if you aren't offering proof to the contrary rather than superstitions, strongly held by millions or not.

    What you are talking about in your second point is the "argument from incredulity", a position very often taken by religious people in the face of science. It says "what is the point in believing in science if our past experience shows us that most scientific theories get overturned".

    Firstly, I am sure you will agree that if everyone held this view science would be dark-ages whisperings. Now we might not be able to solidly "prove" much infallibly, but your alternative (the "soul") is something that is not even supported by a scrap of investigation, and my credo is to adopt the most reasonable explanation, which in this case is not the "soul", but that the brain is prone to automatically assume the idea of the "soul" as a byproduct of other survival mechanisms. Like I say, if you believe otherwise and cannot support it, I don't want to know, because you might as well be arguing that the moon is made of emmental.

    --------
    You quote Dan Brown like he is some sort of authority rather than a second rate novelist. In the idea he raises, he is simply implementing a zeitgeist, namely the resurgence of conflict between science and religion, to sell books. There is no scrap of evidence the kind which is mentioned in that book. Nobody has proved the possibility of genesis or anything like it, and we certainly have not proved the existence of God. If you want to read a popular book about religion, try Richard Dawkins.

    You say "It's a different level of understanding of faith" and this makes no sense to me, because I have no faith of the kind you have. You have blind faith, I have a faith that science can understand anything, which is not even a faith, because it is founded on a proven capacity. It is more a logical conclusion drawn from past experience, and don't bother with the Argument from Incredulity here because it is pointlessly nihilistic. I didn't want to challenge your faith but you brought it up when I asked you not to. If it influences your opinions then fine, but don't cite it because it is not a reliable source on either scientific nor ideological grounds. Perhaps you need to interpret it right but so what? I could interpret anything to say anything I want it to, I can bend the meaning of a text almost unendingly. I know about this, I am a literature student, and the flexibility of interpretation is what makes literature rich, but this is irrelevant because IT DOES NOT PROVE ANYTHING. How many times do I have to say it? Don't bother bringing it up if it isn't sound basis for drawing information, because all I will do is rendering it, as you said, moot, by simply saying "prove it". Over and over and over. A difference of personal interpretation does not constitute proof of anything, especially since the book you are wont to cite is so inaccurate and apocryphal.

    "Not all slave/master situations are based on control of other humans; did you ever think of people who might be indebted to someone else, through things such as money? If you look at it this way then what the Bible says can become quite relevant. "

    How? Slavery is wrong in contemporary society, full stop. The bible in Joshua is stating overtly the directions for the capture and appropriate release of slaves, not the settling of debt. My point is, do you take this advice on board? Or ignore it? Or do you, as you so wonderfully put it, reinterpret it? Into what, may I ask?

    How about this? "And a man who lies with a male as one would with a woman both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon themselves." from Leviticus.

    This is NOT open to reinterpretation, it is clear and concise, it even makes explicit the act of sex, "as one would with a woman", and calls for them to be put to death. Do you ignore this wonderful little tidbit then? Why bother with the whole thing if you are going to pick and choose? Cant you work out your own damn moral philosophy?

    That isn't my point though. What I am trying to say is do not bother quoting or referencing or paraphrasing or summarising or even mentioning a book with such contradictory, bigoted, outdated nonsense in it and calling it proof. I will not listen to you. You are free to believe whatever you want but if it comes from the Bible, the Torah, the Koran or the bloody Cat in the Hat I don't want to know. Understand?

    This is a rebuttal on your use of biblical ideals in debate. The rebuttal on the issue of man and beast will come after this one.


    jgiuliano wrote...
    Re(4): A bit of what makes us different from the animals


    And here's exatcly where humanity is failing at the moment. This "prove it" mentality. You want proof you only need to pick up the Bible. That is documented proof of the existence of God. I cannot accept that so many people from different parts of the globe could all collaborate and create a book like the Bible with the same message and teachings just by coincidence - there had to be some other external force happening there.

    The problem with the current generation of people is that we all demand to have everything in black-and-white. I myself am like this with a lot of issues and its infuriating when I study politicians and government spin-doctors dodge questions and twist constituion and guidelines to suit themselves and keep us peacefully ignorant! People need to understand that we cant have everything in black-and-white and that sometimes we have to sit down and consider issues such as religion.

    Again you're wrong about religion. It's always relevant in a scientific argument. Religion is where science originated from. Science was mans way of trying to prove Religion wrong in questions that cannot be answered by humans themselves. If everyone believed in God and trusted him, then there would be no need for science. You might try and justify this by saying without science we wouldnt have any of the marvels it produces. But that wasn't the original intentions of scientists - it was to prove Religion wrong and give people the facts.

    I might take the classical religious outlook on science, but thats because its even more relevant the further we study it. With everything new found in the reasearch and testing of science, the question of weither or not it's ethically right or morally acceptable is brought up and the only way we can understand areas such as ethics and morals is through religion. And why wouldnt I take this outlook on science, because it happens! Scientists have been proven wrong by themselves so many times, they don't need relgion for them to acknowledge their mistakes. Science wouldn't be dark-age whisperings if everyone adopted this view. Again, you are secularising science and religion instead of embracing them both, if everyone did that then we'd still have the science we see today but it'd be a bit more governed and controlled. You don't seem to understand that I want to have both science and religion to be my guide and I'm sure that most other people would as well!

    I dont quote Dan Brown as a figure of authority, I'm saying he has a point in his book. You can be as critical as you like about him call him a second rate author and greedy. But it's nice to know that he takes the time to write about relevant topics in todays society and he explores ideas that i can relate to, and it's comforting to see that someone else thinks like I do.

    What is blind faith? If you think that by living the gospel and to hell with the rest is a blind faith then that's bollocks! It's not a blind faith at all, in fact, Science is blind to reality that it so completely rejects religion and that's the only real thing we have! I don't view the gospel as a rulebook to be followed such as a game of rugby and that if you stray from the path you'll be reprimanded. The Bible to me is a guide. As a human, I am imperfect and it will always be my nature to make mistakes, I know that no-one could live a life free from sin. The God we believe in is a God of Love. Thats is the most fundamental concept of the church. God loves us no matter who we are and no matter what we do. You quoted Leviticus and thats a relevant point but do you think that by sleeping with another man God loves you any less? "their blood is upon themselves" this dosnt mean their actions eternally condemn their souls. It means that they are responsible for their own lives and that so long as they acknowledge their sins and know that God still loves them and is merciful. Then he will always call them back to him. The Bible tells us what is considered right and wrong it dosnt demand its followers to comply with every regulation set by it. If that were the case the catholic church wouldnt be as popular as it is today. The same applies to slavery, to be truly humble a man must first be a slave and then a master. This is another aspect of the concept of slavery. Only when people experience what it's like to be in the shoes of another person can they fully appreciate that person. Don't judge on things you do not know is just one of the concepts of master/slavery that is brought up in the Bible. Again try not to take the Bible literally!


    Here's why I think you say you have no faith and what happens because of it. You don't believe that the existence of God has been proven so you turn to other people who call themselves experts and who claim they know scientific fact. Your blindness and need to have things proven to you has caused you to become narrow and prejudiced against the church. Your lack of faith in what cannot be seen only increases your hunger for proof. This has a snowball effect which then means that you alienate yourself from anyone who says otherwise and you judge people who say they have a faith as people who are deluding themselves to the truth that you still don't understand fully yourself. This in turn leads to fear, uncertainty, disillusionment and confusion when the things that you thought to be correct turn out wrong.

    Now a question for you. If there's no harm in believing in a supernatural being that creates a path of guidance for you to live your life and to provide hope that something happens after you die. Then why not just do it?

    And you still haven't answered my question. Would you prefer to be a human or an animal? live your life out of impulse or out of enjoyment and meaning?

    Cacophonaut wrote...
    I have split this into two messages. Read the second one down first.


    jgiuliano wrote:
    That I do agree with, I agree with it because we can "prove" this by studying fossils and prehistoric evidence preserved throughout the centuries and trace our ancestry back to our creation.



    You just said science cannot prove anything reliably. Now you are saying it can. Don't alter your beliefs to suit your argument.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    The difference in character is either a requirement to survive in nature or a difference in species. A Chihuahua is a small dog which can be very aggressive simply because it was crossbred with a more aggressive animal. You may find this offensive but animals ARE drones, we kill them out of greed, we clear their natural habitat, we poison the pests and destroy the ones over-populating and not once do they complain or try to fight back out of self preservation or spite, whales are nearly extinct because of us and yet they don't seem to complain. I disagree with all of this, it's inhumane and heartless but we can't deny that it happens.



    What do those things, acts of humans, have to do with the argument that animals are drones? Once again you have not proved anything or even come close. They don't argue because they cannot, they have no opinion because they have no foresight. Are you going to condemn them for this? Are you really going to diminish the wonder and beauty of natural life to the idea of a drone just following a small series of rules programmed into it? Animals are far more complex than that. The brain of a mouse is greater in computation capacity than the most advanced supercomputer. They dont just mindlessly wander around obeying these rules you seem to purport and to suggest that they do once again showcases your own ignorance, rather than mine.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    I will bring the "Bible says" into this. This argument is not a fight, not a show of superior intellect or wisdom; it’s not even a fight over a difference of opinion. It's a different level of understanding of faith.



    This is gibberish. Look up "debate" and the we can argue semantics.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    Dan Brown brought up this idea in his book "Angels and Demons" A priest working at CERN in Geneva. This priest was trying, not to prove that science will always prove religion wrong because it won't, he was trying to unite religion and science so they could work hand-in-hand. Everything you care to think about is covered in the Bible, and yes most of this can be countered by scientific 'facts'.


    You seem derogatory here. Are you saying that the Bible is always right? I don't think even you know what you are saying, to be honest. I will say one thing. Science bases its conclusions on facts empirically observed, tests made, enquiries made. Religion does the opposite. It take a preconceived notion and scours for whatever science it can find to prove it, or failing that, what holes it can poke in scientific theory and shout "God did it!"


    Cacophonaut wrote...
    I have split this into three messages. Read the second one down first.


    jgiuliano wrote:
    But how do people prove the “missing day of Joshua” or the parting of the sea? Science hasn’t evolved enough for much of it to prove anything wrong.


    Why would they prove biblical, quasi apocryphal events that exist in history? Science does not aim to prove history happened, it aims to understand why things happen. Present tense.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    I underestimate our capacity for our stupidity. Maybe I do. And you’re right about stripping us of our achievements. But how do you think we have gotten to the point where we are now? By using our imaginations and coming up with new ways of doing things. That isn’t stupidity, its leaning.


    No, its is cumulative development. A handful of intelligent people contribute to the slow accretion of human ingenuity and gradually we all get nice toys. Not all of us are that smart.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    I can’t build a car or a light bulb and I definitely cannot write a symphony. But there are people who can. I think you forget that it’s other humans that created these things through their own intelligence.


    I do not forget this, it was integral to my argument.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    The people you say are not “smart humans” we are all smart! Everyone in the world has contributed to its development in some way, even you or if you haven’t than chances are you will eventually.


    Yes, in mediocre, unimaginably small ways for the most part. Most of the people you meet will not influence the world in any noticeable way, and will certainly not innovate some astounding development themselves or even contribute to one.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    We are superior to the beasts in a lot of ways and our being able to communicate and work together makes us superior.


    I find it funny that I used the term in irony and you are taking it entirely seriously. Animals work in teams too, so that is clearly not what has made us "superior".

    jgiuliano wrote:
    I might not be able to build a car, maybe you can and through me studying how you did it, eventually I would be able to as well.


    Building a car is not that impressive, it takes no ingenuity to follow an instruction manual or copy an existing innovation. No intelligence. This would not constitute a contribution to society. The overwhelming mediocrity of most humans stops them from ever doing anything remarkable even if you do consider building a car remarkable, because most people don't have the will of intellect to bother getting off the fucking sofa. This is why I dislike people. Take art. The amount of people I know who think it is an odd thing to read a lot, as I do, is unbelievable. The amount of people who will go their entire lives without consuming or understanding one iota of artistic, philosophical or literary content would probably shock even me. They are the humanity I dislike, the mediocre, the uninterested, the DRONES. Upright fucking monkeys with clothes and language. They are not all smart, just because you are comparing them to less intelligent animals.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    “Mankind’s reach exceeds his grasp” That’s very true. You know something; we have reached Everest’s of development! But where you’re wrong is that it’s not brainpower that gives us foresight, enlightenment or wisdom.


    What is it then? The "soul".
    PROVE IT!

    jgiuliano wrote:
    There are countless people we’ve called geniuses through the years who have very little common sense;


    Name one. One again you fail to back up your comments with sources.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    wisdom, foresight and enlightenment can never come from reading books and studying graphs, it came from experience and learning.


    "Experience and learning?" You mean those things that can be attained from reading books and studying graphs? You fatuous twerp. You are insulting my profession here.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    You’ve misinterpreted Einstein here, he’s saying here, there are unfathomable, incredible boundaries we have yet to discover and as long as we continue to learn we will never grasp it all.


    Wrong. This statement in its original context concerned the atomic bomb. He was saying what I said he was. Do you really think a scientist would say something like "everyone stop learning, we are never going to understand the unfathomable mysteries of the universe if we keep trying to learn all the time!" Einstein believed as I do in the capability of science to understand anything. What do you suggest we do if we stop? Pray? I though human understanding was what made us "superior to the beasts"? You don't half contradict yourself.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    We split the atom, which was very clever, we blew shit up and yes I’d be willing to say that was, not clever, but a lesson. By creating the nuclear bomb we got rid of a lot of evil in the world,


    What?
    Nagasaki? Hiroshima? Were they evil then?

    jgiuliano wrote:
    You have incredibly high expectations for a race you define as stupid.


    I define them as stupid because of my expectations, which are not that high. Is it too much to ask for people to stop being racist and ignorant? Is it too much to ask for people to read a fucking book every now and then? Apparently it is, which is why people are stupid. My expectations are perfectly reasonable. Their standards are just so low.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    Eventually we will understand quantum gravity; it’s just not time for that yet. You need to have faith, if not in God, then at least in humankind, trust that if we aren’t going to understand quantum gravity in our lifetime it’ll still happen.


    I said this in my original post. I do have (not faith) expectations that we will develop as a race. I am just irritated I wont get to see it.

    jgiuliano wrote:
    I also believe we will never truly be free from ignorance and intolerance and we will never be fully humanitarian.


    Then you are the one with poor expectations. You are basing them on your experience of people, but people are evolving to be smarter, our civilisation is developing. One day, centuries from now, ignorance will be just a word.


    Cacophonaut then left a series of shouts on my profile that read thus:

    Cacophonaut wrote...
    I don't like PM's. I'm going to talk here. Listen, you fucking bible cunt. I don't give a shit what you fucking believe but I don't want to know. Do you understand me? The bible is not "documented proof of the existence of God" because if it was PROOF nobody would bother arguing against it. I sent a few messages but then I realised you are not worth the effort it took to write them, and there was a last part that has not been sent for that reason. Imagine it.


    Cacophonaut wrote...
    Now listen to me. You are in a debate here, and arguing that fatuous historical documents are proof of anything is ignorant in the extreme. You yourself are a drone, of exactly the kind that makes me misogynistic (look it up), you amble through life never questioning a thing and you make me fucking sick with your stupidity and homocentric egotism, assuming some sort of superiority over animals when I have met horses more intelligent. " If everyone believed in God and trusted him, then there would be no need for science." Your words. I have never heard such shit in all my life.


    Cacophonaut wrote...
    You are wrong about so fucking much and if you would just bloody listen to someone or read a fucking book that wasn't written by some shepherd twelve centuries ago you might get an idea of how absolute garbage your ideas are. Are your parents catholic? If so, I blame them for filling your head with such shit.


    Cacophonaut wrote...
    And you contradict yourself as well. The reason I don't want to bother is I tried addressing all your points and I ended up with a message too long to send via lastfm. You have so many stupid ideas I could not fit them all in.


    Cacophonaut wrote...
    For fuck sake question these ideas. Ask yourself why you have them, and read something that might challenge them. I don't want to bother trying to argue with you because you have such a self righteous zealot air which, coupled with your basic grasp of the english language, is very irritating considering your ideas are such gibberish. If you spoke sense and backed up your points with references to things you had read I might listen. But all you do is spit out borderline propaganda comments like "The only way we can understand ethics is through religion". Offensive bile, especially to atheists. Are you suggesting that I have no understanding of ethics? I read fucking books and listen to lectures on ethics you insipid shit, and you suggest I have none because I am an atheist? Ignorant prick.


    Finally, I sent him a final PM:
    jgiuliano wrote...
    This is...well...I think you know what this is


    Break down and analyse everything I say as much as you like here. Please, this is good thinking material! And if you feel you need to give me an earful because I simply argued the point with you, by all means! I think that all this banter and creative use of words will never convince either one of us otherwise of what we think is correct.

    I want you to know that:

    All the examples I use and everything I say to you to counter your arguments are based on my knowledge, experience and understanding which I have developed over 17 years of my life through reading, communicating with people, living my life in different places, getting an education and growing up. You have relevant points and I can understand where you are coming from on this. If you are adament that what you are telling me is right and you stand by what you say, then thats fine, I won't judge you based on your principles or any other aspect of you.

    What you believe to be true and what you discount as false is completely up to you, that's your descision. Just know that there are people in this world that have differing opinions to your own and that they will try to convince you to think like they do. I ask that you take the time to listen to those people and hear what they have to say because they to have relevant points to share as well. If you think that I haven't been listening to you either, than OK I'll try harder next time and I acknowledge your issue with me on that. Chances are I'll study what you have written and think about it quite extensively.

    It's upsetting to see that you can't accept another persons opinion on this matter and that you refuse to listen to me becase I take a religious view of the world. The way I see it, you are still questioning your identiy and are still figuring out who you are. I know that I still am and maybe this religious view will change for me and I'll take on a different path. I pray that hopefully soon you will take the time to try and listen if not appreciate the opinions of others, and become a better person because of it.

    I'm trying not to sound hypocritical, I know that there are things here that I am saying to you that I don't do myself. If you are listening to this then know that I am trying to make myself a better person and that as I grow older, as I go through life and witness new challenges and changes, I will become a wiser, smarter and better person. I hope that you shall do the same.

    Keep well

    Matthew 5:44
    "I tell you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who mistreat you and persecute you"


    For those of you who read this. Give me your thoughts and opinions. Weither its about the points we argued about or your position on the matter. For me, this was such an educating experience and again I thank Cacophonaut for his very pertinant argument that gave me a chance to think about this stuff!
  • 15 Albums that altered my look on music.

    20 mai 2009, 0h59m

    OK 15 albums that changed my music experience and i tell you what I'm grateful for them :) these are in no order at all:

    1) Play - Moby
    2) Two Shoes - The Cat Empire
    3) Watermark - Enya
    4) Greatest Hits - Brooks and Dunn
    5) Saturate - Breaking Benjamin
    6) Curtain Call - Eminem
    7) One Cell In the Sea - A Fine Frenzy
    8) Tri State - Above and Beyond
    9) Dark Horse - Nickelback
    10) A New Day Has Come - Celine Dion
    11) Innocent Eyes - Delta Goodrem
    12) Black Fingernails, Red Wine - Eskimo Joe
    13) Fallen - Evanescence
    14) Epiphany - T-Pain
    15) American Idiot - Green Day