Thursday, August 11, 2005

Battleground God

14 comments:

heccy said...

Took zero hits. surprised that only 7.6% of people had self-consistent ideas about god.

Observant said...

Took one hit and bit two bullets.

"Direct Hit 1

You answered "True" to questions 10 and 14.

These answers generated the following response:

You've just taken a direct hit! Earlier you agreed that it is rational to believe that the Loch Ness monster does not exist if there is an absence of strong evidence or argument that it does. No strong evidence or argument was required to show that the monster does not exist - absence of evidence or argument was enough. But now you claim that the atheist needs to be able to provide strong arguments or evidence if their belief in the non-existence of God is to be rational rather than a matter of faith.

The contradiction is that on the first ocassion (Loch Ness monster) you agreed that the absence of evidence or argument is enough to rationally justify belief in the non-existence of the Loch Ness monster, but on this occasion (God), you do not."

This doesn't bother me -
a)believing in the lochness monster doesnt matter to me, so the lack of evidence keeps it under my radar while G-d is very important to me. The absence of clear evidence doesn't matter. The fact that there is arguable evidence, even if there are two sides to an argument is more compelling to me than the absence of any logical attempt at proof.

I bit two bullets
1) I think the rapist can be considered to have justified belief. I think he is crazy, I would lock him up because I think he is incorrect about what G-d wants, but if he is convinced, that is justifiable.

2) I also but the one where I said it is possible that G-d could do something irrational. I thknk the "bullet" is silly.

Thanks! I thought that using my orthodox belief system would make me fail a rationalist test terribly! I did pretty well, thanks for the chizuk!!

I doubt thought that that was your intent.

Orthoprax said...

observant,

"This doesn't bother me -
a)believing in the lochness monster doesnt matter to me, so the lack of evidence keeps it under my radar while G-d is very important to me."

It may not bother you, but it is still an error in logical thinking. Using the subjective importance of a postulate as a qualitative difference is wrong.

"1) I think the rapist can be considered to have justified belief. I think he is crazy, I would lock him up because I think he is incorrect about what G-d wants, but if he is convinced, that is justifiable."

If it is justifiable, then he is justified in his actions. Then at the same time you'd lock him up because his actions are unjust. You bit the bullet in the game but you don't understand the fundamental incoherence in your views.

"I also but the one where I said it is possible that G-d could do something irrational. I thknk the "bullet" is silly."

I'll let you have that one. Most people who believe in God also believe he can do the irrational, like making square circles and so on. Just don't read the Kuzari. R' Yehuda Halevi would kick your ass.

"I doubt thought that that was your intent."

My intent was to just to have people think about their conceptions of God. You obviously didn't see it that way and took the test as a challenge to your faith and so you come here to report your glorious "victory."

If you're going to be a believer, you should at least be sure about what it is you believe in.

Just think about it.

Orthoprax said...

heccy,

Congrats...but still so surprised?

onionsoupmix said...

I liked it. Got the same bullets and hits as observant. About the rapist question, orthoprax, I wonder if you consider Avraham Avinu's going to the akeida justified or if you would lock him up.

Orthoprax said...

onion,

In the Torah, God is a character as real as any other and so Abraham listening to Him is justified. But then the question is whether it is right to take orders you see as clearly and overly wrong. I would say not. Saying that you were just following orders doesn't cut it.

If I was told the akeida story from a real person nowadays ready to go kill his son, of course I would think the guy was nuts.

heccy said...

I was surprised because i didnt see where the hits or bullets would be. Seeing Observant and OnionSoupmix's mistakes makes it more clear about what contradictions would be occurring. I can see a lot of religious people getting those. I guess that it was biased towards non-religious folk because if you dont have any preconceived dogmas about god..you dont have to force any notions about the being known as god, if one were to exist.

Orthoprax said...

heccy,

"I guess that it was biased towards non-religious folk because if you dont have any preconceived dogmas about god..you dont have to force any notions about the being known as god, if one were to exist."

That's not a bias, that's a natural development. Dogma and reason are usually at odds.

Observant said...

"It may not bother you, but it is still an error in logical thinking. Using the subjective importance of a postulate as a qualitative difference is wrong."

My point was that the matter of G-d does have "proofs." Whether they are ironclad or not, what I feel to be a preponderance of "pretty good reasons to believe in G-d" way outweighs the existance of any Loch Ness monster, about which I have heard no evidence.

Maybe if someone would attempt a "Permission to Believe" style of book to allow me not proof, but permission to believe in the monster, than I would. Until then...

"If it is justifiable, then he is justified in his actions. Then at the same time you'd lock him up because his actions are unjust. You bit the bullet in the game but you don't understand the fundamental incoherence in your views."

He can justify his actions. But I can lock him up becasue I/people can't, and I/we don't want women raped.

I just don't think he has to apologize for anything.

I think anyone with a classic Orthodox understanding of G-d comes out of that excersise pretty unscathed. Its reassuring.

Orthoprax said...

observant,

"My point was that the matter of G-d does have "proofs." Whether they are ironclad or not, what I feel to be a preponderance of "pretty good reasons to believe in G-d" way outweighs the existance of any Loch Ness monster, about which I have heard no evidence."

Maybe you should do some research into the arguments for the existence of Nessie.

http://www.lochnessinvestigation.org/

No excuse to keep yourself ignorant, right?

"Maybe if someone would attempt a "Permission to Believe" style of book to allow me not proof, but permission to believe in the monster, than I would. Until then..."

They are out there. Just do a search through amazon or barnes and nobles.

"He can justify his actions. But I can lock him up becasue I/people can't, and I/we don't want women raped."

If he can justify it then why don't you accept it? Either it is a good justification or not.

"I just don't think he has to apologize for anything."

That means that he has done nothing wrong and you have no right to punish him! You're saying contradictory sentences one after another and not even realizing it.

"I think anyone with a classic Orthodox understanding of G-d comes out of that excersise pretty unscathed. Its reassuring."

Relatively unscathed, meaning it could have been worse, right? But taking three hits isn't doing so hot either.

But also, keep in mind that just because something is internally consistent doesn't mean it's true.

Mis-nagid said...

First try:

You have reached the end!

Congratulations! You have made it to the end of this activity.

You took zero direct hits and you bit zero bullets. The average player of this activity to date takes 1.39 hits and bites 1.11 bullets. 275997 people have so far undertaken this activity.

Click the link below for further analysis of your performance and to see if you've won an award.

How did you do compared to other people?

* 275997 people have completed this activity to date.
* You suffered zero direct hits and bit zero bullets.
* This compares with the average player of this activity to date who takes 1.39 hits and bites 1.11 bullets.
* 7.60% of the people who have completed this activity, like you, emerged unscathed with the TPM Medal of Honour.
* 45.84% of the people who have completed this activity took very little damage and were awarded the TPM Medal of Distinction.

Orthoprax said...

Mis-nagid,

You, I had no doubts about. ;-)

onionsoupmix said...

Also, this cute little game is a good litmus test for frum people. I sent it out to a bunch of pple on my email list and found (SURPRISE) a strong correlation between how orthodox the person and how likely they were to dismiss the quiz as " ridiculous, geared towards atheists, worded poorly," etc.

Orthoprax said...

Onion,

Makes sense. If you don't think about something critically, as how most Orthodox Jews don't think about God, then the quiz will show that out.