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post #11 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-12-2005, 04:30 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

Are you affording nucleic acid sequences consciousness? Or is consciousness simply without relevance or merit?

The fact is that there is no reality -- there is only perception. This isn't just a clever little catch-phrase -- it's an absolute truism. We can only contemplate our existence within the bounds of our perception, and perhaps it's fair to make the same assessment in regard to genes. Do genes have perception in addition to purpose? Are they an instrument of some unseen force or dimension? Are we the genes of a larger consciousness? Is the universe itself alive? Someone please! Gimme another hit of acid! [8D]

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post #12 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-12-2005, 04:34 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

One way to approach this is to look at the watch made by 'the blind watchmaker' and see what we can infer about the latter from the properties of the mechanism.
Here are a few pointers for discussion about what I have learned about evolution in a nutshell.

All species are transient - everything goes extinct in a relatively short period of time.

Natural Selection is utterly brutal.

What you see in complex adaptations are weapons created in an evolutionary arms race.

There is no compassion, pity or any other 'no payoff' behaviour in the animal world. What looks like altruism invariably turns out to be a complex route genes use to aid their replication i.e. be selfish.

Conclusion: I wouldn't like to meet the guy who thought this mechanism might be a laugh to create. Sounds more like Morgoth than Jehova.

On the other hand, I would like to meet the guy who made such elegantly simple physical laws, who made such a truly stupendously gigantic universe, and made such beauty in almost everything around us.

Bit of a puzzle, eh?



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post #13 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-12-2005, 04:39 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

Quote:
GermanStar - 4/13/2005 11:30 PM

Are you affording nucleic acid sequences consciousness? Or is consciousness simply without relevance or merit?

The fact is that there is no reality -- there is only perception. This isn't just a clever little catch-phrase -- it's an absolute truism. We can only contemplate our existence within the bounds of our perception, and perhaps it's fair to make the same assessment in regard to genes. Do genes have perception in addition to purpose? Are they an instrument of some unseen force or dimension? Are we the genes of a larger consciousness? Is the universe itself alive? Someone please! Gimme another hit of acid! [8D]
Genes are a record of the history of the earth - some sequences are very primitive indeed.

One can also dismiss life as just an interesting chemical reaction that has gone on for a long time - I wonder what the eventual cake will look like, and if the baker gives a damn.

Our brains are too small to understand some things (look at the number of sports fans).
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post #14 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-12-2005, 05:04 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

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jjl - 4/12/2005 3:39 PM

Our brains are too small to understand some things
No doubt, but the extreme limitations of perspective and perception are much greater impediments to understanding, IMHO...

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post #15 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-12-2005, 06:58 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

What S-KLASSE8 and jjl said. Also, since the same technological age that brought us molecular genetics has also brought us the conclusion that our entire universe -- and all life within it -- will most likely fizzle out, I'm left wondering why a Gene God would oversee all the genes with the divine knowledge that they will ultimately become extinguished. The only hope for our precious genes is that our perceptions of the universe are wrong, but if that's the case then maybe our perception that all life centers around genes is also wrong. Nuts, I've got a headache now...
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post #16 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-12-2005, 08:17 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

Quote:
GermanStar - 4/12/2005 7:04 PM

Quote:
jjl - 4/12/2005 3:39 PM

Our brains are too small to understand some things
No doubt, but the extreme limitations of perspective and perception are much greater impediments to understanding, IMHO...
I don't believe it! You've actually written a statement that I agree with! Have you been taking vitamins? Congrats [:D]

"I have spent MOST of the money I have made in my life on expensive women, expensive cars, and expensive drugs. The rest I just wasted." S-KLASSE8, "Belief in the supernatural, reflects a failure in the imagination." - Edward Abbey "Give me a firm place to stand, and I will move the Earth." - Archimedes - 1979 (fully restored) 450SLC - 1989 (fully restored)420SEL - "S CLASS STYLE - S CLASS ATTITUDE"
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post #17 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-13-2005, 08:51 AM Thread Starter
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

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jpb5151 - 4/12/2005 8:58 PM

What S-KLASSE8 and jjl said. Also, since the same technological age that brought us molecular genetics has also brought us the conclusion that our entire universe -- and all life within it -- will most likely fizzle out, I'm left wondering why a Gene God would oversee all the genes with the divine knowledge that they will ultimately become extinguished. The only hope for our precious genes is that our perceptions of the universe are wrong, but if that's the case then maybe our perception that all life centers around genes is also wrong. Nuts, I've got a headache now...
Well, perhaps the Gene God is some type of local entity, and is as much at the mercy of the physics of the universe as we are - he sees his job to create systems which constantly adapt to the systems that are not in his control.

What I find amusing in all this is how simple it is to create a religous system that reflects our technological level, and seems to have an innate logicality to it that can be spread to the masses. Our ancestors totally discard the mythological gods when it becomes obvious that a chariot is not pulling the sun around in the sky. Based on our current level of scientific understanding, it is pretty easy for us to discard the idea that a seven-horned beast will be arriving anytime soon to throw us all in a lake of fire, nevermind all the biblical scientific inaccuracies. In past eons, Jewish tribesman need a God that can explain to them their enslavement. DO we now not need a Gene God to explain the pointlessness of life ?


Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

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post #18 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-13-2005, 03:09 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

What the whole god and religion thing comes down to is this - If believing in a religion makes you happy, feel more secure and adds to the quality of your life, far be it from me to burst your happily organized and seemingly everything explained, bubble. On the other hand though, if believing that all religion was invented by man to explain the unexplained in a way that we could believe and understand, to comfort us into believing that our death is not really the end and that religious supernatural, rhetoric, answers NO questions at all, then for some of us, to know that we indeed don't have ALL the answers for everything, but are content and happy in the fact that we won't EVER know everything, that we live each day to it's fullest, and with an open mind, using reason and logic for explanations rather than the supernatural.

"I have spent MOST of the money I have made in my life on expensive women, expensive cars, and expensive drugs. The rest I just wasted." S-KLASSE8, "Belief in the supernatural, reflects a failure in the imagination." - Edward Abbey "Give me a firm place to stand, and I will move the Earth." - Archimedes - 1979 (fully restored) 450SLC - 1989 (fully restored)420SEL - "S CLASS STYLE - S CLASS ATTITUDE"
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post #19 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-13-2005, 03:11 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

What the whole god and religion thing comes down to is this - If believing in a religion makes you happy, feel more secure and adds to the quality of your life, far be it from me to burst your happily organized and seemingly everything explained, bubble. On the other hand though, if believing that all religion was invented by man to explain the unexplained in a way that we could believe and understand, to comfort us into believing that our death is not really the end and that religious supernatural, rhetoric, answers NO questions at all, then for some of us, to know that we indeed don't have ALL the answers for everything, but are content and happy in the fact that we won't EVER know everything, that we live each day to it's fullest, and with an open mind, using reason and logic for explanations rather than the supernatural.

"I have spent MOST of the money I have made in my life on expensive women, expensive cars, and expensive drugs. The rest I just wasted." S-KLASSE8, "Belief in the supernatural, reflects a failure in the imagination." - Edward Abbey "Give me a firm place to stand, and I will move the Earth." - Archimedes - 1979 (fully restored) 450SLC - 1989 (fully restored)420SEL - "S CLASS STYLE - S CLASS ATTITUDE"
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post #20 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-13-2005, 03:38 PM
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RE: The definition of God in a technological world

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S-KLASSE8 - 4/14/2005 10:09 PM

What the whole god and religion thing comes down to is this - If believing in a religion makes you happy, feel more secure and adds to the quality of your life, far be it from me to burst your happily organized and seemingly everything explained, bubble. On the other hand though, if believing that all religion was invented by man to explain the unexplained in a way that we could believe and understand, to comfort us into believing that our death is not really the end and that religious supernatural, rhetoric, answers NO questions at all, then for some of us, to know that we indeed don't have ALL the answers for everything, but are content and happy in the fact that we won't EVER know everything, that we live each day to it's fullest, and with an open mind, using reason and logic for explanations rather than the supernatural.
You're right, I think. The question often asked by the religious in response to this view is why do you choose to live a good life (I'm assuming that you do). Well, why does an agnostic/athiest choose to live a good life? And if one does, is this more admirable - more good - than a good life lived by someone in fear of punishment in the afterlife?
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