Friday, July 22, 2011

Copan Replies to Avalos

222 comments:

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PhysicistDave said...

Ah, but Vic: the real problem for Christians is Exodus 32, where the 9/11 atrocity is presaged with Moses. That of course is the Golden Calf incident in which Moses, supposedly at Yahweh’s orders, has 3,000 or so Israelites murdered because they had demonstrated the wrong religious views.

Eerily similar to the 9/11 murders where around 3,000 were murdered for religious reasons.

Lots of Christians have been willing to tell me why God probably would not order such murders nowadays. But I have yet to find a single Christian – not even one! – who is willing to unequivocally condemn the mass murder described in Exodus 32, even if it was indeed ordered by God.

And, that is the utterly damning moral problem that condemns Christianity as monstrously evil: as long as Christians are willing to place the commands of God above the obvious demands of morality, no honest, thoughtful, and sane person can view Christianity with anything except contempt.

Perhaps some Christian here will surprise me and unequivocally condemn the murders in Exodus 32, even if we stipulate that they were indeed commanded by God.

I’m waiting.

Dave

B. Prokop said...

To "Physicist Dave":

Exodus 32 is no problem whatsoever to the overwhelming majority of Christians who are neither Fundamentalists nor Literalists. The passage in question is allegory. God never gave such a command. The incident never happened. Not an issue - certainly no "real problem".

JohnC said...

I will condemn them, and many other things in the OT. I am a Christian, and I do not feel compelled in any way to hold to any view of scripture that presents a God so radically different from Jesus Christ.

I believe Jesus came to correct much of the nonsense taught about God in the old testament.

"You have heard that it was said, 'Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.

-Matt 5:38-39

Jesus does not agree with the nationalistic, genocidal God presented by some Jews attempting to form God in their own image in the old testament.

I think you are right to see them as immoral, and I have met many many Christians who read the scriptures in ways that properly put Christ at the head of our understanding of God. Many reject those parts of the Old Testament as a positive revelation of God. There are several ways of looking at them, but it hardly matters as long as Christ is the primary revelation. I am a Christian not a biblican and I do think there is a difference.

B. Prokop said...

"John C":

I don't know where you get your understanding of the Old Testament from, but it certainly does not agree with Saint Paul, who writes, "All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness" (2 Timothy 3:16). Keep in mind that when Paul refers to "scripture", he's talking about what we call the Old Testament.

Christ Himself said much the same on numerous occasions.

Walter said...

@PhysicistDave

At least Old Testament Yahweh just slaughtered you if you crossed him--your punishment ended at the grave. If you are not *with* New Testament Jesus, he will keep tormenting you forever, even after you are dead.

Very liberal Christian Universalists are the only Christians who can claim any moral high ground IMO. And the liberal/progressive types are usually the ones who allegorize the nasty passages away. Of course it seems mighty convenient to interpret all the evil passages symbolically while claiming all the good stuff must be literal-historical.

Anonymous said...

I really don't see why Copan is so desperate to avoid the clear force of this command. God requires women to have a deep respect for men - for a woman to overpower a man in this way is an offense in God's sight.

PhysicistDave,

The Israelites exhibited deeply sinful behaviour: rebelling against God when they knew that he was real, had rescued them from Egypt, etc. They most certainly deserved what they got. This was rebellion of the most brazen and disgusting kind.

JohnC said...

B. Prokop

"All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness"

I agree with that fully. What I don't agree with is your understanding of what that means ;) For scripture to be profitable for teaching and correction, I don't think that somehow implies that we must approach it so mechanically, always assuming the writer has a perfect understanding of God, or even that the writer holds the view we are to hold.

Does inspiration somehow mean the writer is delivering the very words of God from his mouth? If so, then why use a human at all? Why not just beam the words down to earth in book penned by God himself?

This view of scripture does not properly hold Christ as the primary and perfect revelation of the invisible God and it is just not anywhere near organic enough considering the chosen means of delivery.

For example, Job would be a completely absurd book if we look at the writer as perfectly revealing God.
As if God bends to the whim of Satan.
In Job, the Christ figure is Job himself.
Job is the scapegoat, Job is exceedingly righteous, and Job cries out for God to vindicate him.
There are many parallels.
He is the character of interest and value in this story, not the writer and what the writer thinks God is like.

I don't think Insparation has to be taken to mean the writer is perfectly revealing God, rather God is using the scripture to perfectly reveal something about himself.
The key for understanding the meaning of every OT text is Christ.

JohnC said...

B. Prokop

I also didn't see you were advocating an allegorical view of the OT, not a literal one :) So my argument is more toward a different camp... I think allegory is a much better model for understanding the OT when it seems to contradict the God we see in Jesus, but still I prefer the view I proposed above.

Hope your weekend is going good, sorry for many potentially irrelevant words ;)

B. Prokop said...

No problem!

No offense meant; none taken.

Anonymous said...

Expect Lofty to appear any minute . . .

PhysicistDave said...

JohnC,

Now I can’t go around saying I can find *no* Christian willing to condemn evil! Seriously, thanks for your reply. As you can see from other responses here, quite a few of your fellow Christians have a less clear sense of morality.

Walter wrote to me:
>Very liberal Christian Universalists are the only Christians who can claim any moral high ground IMO.

I agree. Although I know a lot of Universalists who are merely unreflective leftists, as unthinking as many fundamentalists. I should add in all honesty that I once knew an evangelical who was also a universalist: he was simply too decent a person to believe in eternal torment of innocents -- all of the other Christians seemed to think him unbelievably naïve. Although they did agree he was an awfully decent person.

Dave

BenYachov said...

Fundamentalist Atheists never cease to amaze.

How do we know Golden Calf worship was just a bunch of peaceful hippie types sitting around peacefully chanting "O I love you Golden Calf" or "Yaaah Calf, you rock dude!"?

Every TV move I ever saw showed a public orgy of unnatural depravity(in front of the kids), violence, robbery, human sacrifice, child sacrifice,rape etc......

I'd order the death of 3,000 people
who did these things to restore public order even if I didn't believe in God.

Riots haft to be put down.

Plus this happened right after YHWH opened the Red Sea so the Israelites couldn't plead invincible ignorance as to who the true God was.

Did Allah part the Hudson river on 9/10 and the Post just forgot to report it or something?

Seriously?

Dumbest Pop Atheist argument ever. I have to believe even Paps has higher standards.

JohnC said...

Ben,

Your tone is completely unhelpful in a discussion like this. There is no need to be so completely insulting to your fellow human beings just because they think differently than you.

It is a weak counter-argument against atheist claims that God's judgement s were immoral if you dodge the harder parts such as infanticide.

When would it ever be right to judge an infant as worthy of death?

But God is sometimes portrayed in the Old Testament as ordering the murder of infants.

How then would you defend that? Did the infants sacrifice other infants? What did they do to deserve this judgement if that is your case against the atheist argument that the God of the Old Testament is immoral?

BenYachov said...

>Your tone is completely unhelpful in a discussion like this. There is no need to be so completely insulting to your fellow human beings just because they think differently than you.

I've had experience with PhysicstDave before he is a real nasty piece of work. I never insulted him or said anything bad to hi, but he told me he wished there really was a Hell so I could go there. The man lives to insult theists how do you not notice this.

Second he brought up Exodus 32 which doesn't deal with the killing of any infants(except possibly by those who worshiped the Golden Calf). So one charge at a time.

Besides I have no problem having this conversation with civilized persons who wish to treat these issues seriously.

That excludes Gnu'Atheists.

BenYachov said...

Beside JohnC I'm a Catholic Christian by the Grace of God.

Your seemingly Neo-Marconite beliefs aren't what I would consider orthodox in the first place. No offense but we are not on the same page theologically and have not established any common ground.

PhysicistDave said...

Ben Yachov wrote:
>I've had experience with PhysicstDave before he is a real nasty piece of work. I never insulted him or said anything bad to hi [sic]

The exact opposite is the truth, of course, but I don't suppose I need to point that out to anyone who has much experience with BY!

Tony Hoffman said...

PD: "The exact opposite is the truth, of course, but I don't suppose I need to point that out to anyone who has much experience with BY!"

Ha. Yes, I do wonder who Ben's imagined audience is sometimes.

BenYachov said...

I guess we can add either liar or deluded to that as well.

We can always go back to the original thread. I believe it had something to do with Feser.

From Dave I learned Gnu's are not civilized and not to even pretend they are or treat them as such.

BenYachov said...

Tony Hoffman,

When was I uncivil to you?

Well?

Walter said...

Every TV move I ever saw showed a public orgy of unnatural depravity(in front of the kids), violence, robbery, human sacrifice, child sacrifice,rape etc.....

TV movie? Surely you don't get your theology from Cecil B. Demille? :-)

All I read in Exodus was that the people were dancing around the calf and Yahweh got pissed (for he is a jealous god). Keeps the troops in line if you smite a few thousand slackers every now and then.

PhysicistDave said...

Anonymous wrote to me:
>The Israelites exhibited deeply sinful behaviour: rebelling against God when they knew that he was real, had rescued them from Egypt, etc. They most certainly deserved what they got. This was rebellion of the most brazen and disgusting kind.

And, that, alas, is the basic response I have gotten from nearly all Christians (excepting a couple here, thankfully).

Of course, the 9/11 bombers could have made a similar point: the evil Westerners, including Christians, have brazenly rejected the noble truth offered them by God via Muhammad, and so they must die.

A good theological point could be made that humans’ “being created in God’s image” means that God did not want automatons without a conscience who blindly obeyed God’s supposed commands but rather that humans were meant to emulate God by thinking through moral questions for themselves. An Israeli friend of mine told me that that was in fact how he was taught to think of the Old Testament.

It seems to me that C. S. Lewis might have shared that view, and, indeed, that it fits in nicely with Lewis’ point that our moral sense is evidence for the existence of God. But, since I am not a believer, I suppose I should leave it to someone like Vic to develop that point more convincingly.

Dave

PhysicistDave said...

Tony Hoffman wrote to me:
>Ha. Yes, I do wonder who Ben's imagined audience is sometimes.

Do you know what BY’s background is? The time he got really mad at me (and apparently he still is!) was when I pointed out that Feser made some serious errors concerning physics and math: I have a Ph.D. in physics from Stanford, so I actually am expert on that topic.

My mentioning some facts about physics and math really infuriated BY for some reason. Is BY a philosopher or just an angry young student or what?

Personally, I think no human is incapable of being saved from the Dark Side, whether Darth Vader or Ben Yachov!

All the best,

Dave

BenYachov said...

>TV movie? Surely you don't get your theology from Cecil B. Demille? :-)

Walter I don't believe in Sola Scriptura. I take it for granted the Text doesn't tell us everything. Which is why you need Tradition.

>All I read in Exodus was that the people were dancing around the calf and Yahweh got pissed (for he is a jealous god). Keeps the troops in line if you smite a few thousand slackers every now and then.

A Deist/Agnostic who believes in Sola Scriptura.

How cute!

Where does Scripture say everything must be established by Scripture alone?

The Talmud & the Mishna is replete with the stories of the iniquity that when on.

BenYachov said...

>The time he got really mad at me (and apparently he still is!) was when I pointed out that Feser made some serious errors concerning physics and math:

He made no argument from physics and Math & even BDK thought you misread Feser. You also took a few pot shots at him.


I keep pointing out Feser was making an argument from philosophy. You ignored me and told me you wished Hell really existed so both Feser and I could go there.

The thread is in this very blog. Anybody can read it for themselves.

BenYachov said...

Really Dave if you want to lie go ahead.

But the thread is here in the archives. If I get around to it I will dig it up and everyone can read it for themselves. It's wasn't your brightest moment.

B. Prokop said...

Children, children! Don't make me send you to your corners!

The last several posts to this thread are disgraceful and embarrassing to read.

Tony, Walter, "Physicist Dave", you're all better than Ben Yachov. don't descend to his level. Just ignore him, and he'll go elsewhere.

BenYachov said...

Here is the tread

http://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=10584495&postID=7269891037191878993

You can skip on down to Dave's post.

September 19, 2010 10:52 PM

You can all judge for yourselves when Dave said "The exact opposite is the truth," if that in fact is the truth.

BenYachov said...

Why don't you read it Bob?

JohnC said...

Ben,

I read that thread, and I think you sort of started things down that direction, but I could be wrong.

My friend, whether someone else is treating us as civilized or not, should we not treat them with civility as Jesus is our Lord? Are we not commanded to love our enemies? In what way does the tone you use to approach these men show them God's love and grace? Was God not extremely patient with you also? Perhaps we should show these men that same patience that God has shown us.

Ben, as a fellow Christian I would just ask you to consider it ;) If you don't think I am a Christian, then consider your Lord Jesus or consider St. Paul and how they would engage in this conversation.

BenYachov said...

>I read that thread, and I think you sort of started things down that direction, but I could be wrong.

You read 192 posts & came up with this judgement in the short time between posts?

Ok.....

Or could it be you are already bias towards me because you pre-judged me & maybe you don't want to admit you made a snap judgement?

Just putting it out there for your consideration. You don't have to answer me.

BenYachov said...

>My friend, whether someone else is treating us as civilized or not, should we not treat them with civility as Jesus is our Lord?

Other than call his complaint a "dumb pot Atheist argument" I fail to see how I was uncivil?

Indeed compared to being called a "Pathological Liar" for merely disagreeing with Dave and being told he hopes both Feser & I burn in Hell that is quite benign.

You make these vague charges about "tone" but nothing specific as to what I said & why it was wrong.

I don't find that fair. But I don't hold you any ill will for it. I'm sure your mean well for that I thank you.

BenYachov said...

BTW JohnC for the record it was you who made it personally about me. So I responded in self-defense in kind.

My points remain unanswered accept by Walter.

1. Why assume the Golden Calf Worshipers where benign or acted in a benign fashion?

2. This is compared to 911? When did the Muslims part the Hudson River & why didn't the NY Post or the Times report it? So how where we New Yorkers to know to accept Islam?

3>The Israelites already passed threw the Red Sea so they can't plead invincible ignorance before God as to who the true God is.

Any substantive response here other than I don't like your tone?

If not fine. But don't attack the messenger.

BenYachov said...

Bob

I don't know what it is I've done to you. But this is the second time you broadsided me out of the blue. At least be man enough to talk to me Catholic to Catholic.

Doesn't the moral law require it? What would JP2 of happy memory do?

B. Prokop said...

Ben,

Your problem is you suffer from acute internet rudeness. You make the Catholic Faith look bad by doing so, which therefore involves me.

Please try to speak to others on a blog in the same manner as if you were face to face with them. In other words, the same level of respect and politeness. You wouldn't be calling these others names and insulting them the way you do, were we all in the same room. Speaking frankly, your internet manners are an embarrassment.

In general, Victor's very fine website is an oasis of sanity in an ocean of, were we all in cars, could only be described as perpetual road rage. Let's keep it that way.

My own goal in posting things is to write in such a manner, that were I ever to meet any of my fellow posters, I would have nothing to be embarrassed about or have to apologize for.

Is that man to man enough for you?

BenYachov said...

>Your problem is you suffer from acute internet rudeness. You make the Catholic Faith look bad by doing so, which therefore involves me.

Unless you want to deal with specifics charges of specific behavior at specific points in time I am not interested. I refuse to defend myself against the vague.

>Please try to speak to others on a blog in the same manner as if you were face to face with them.

I do always as best I can.

>You wouldn't be calling these others names and insulting them the way you do, were we all in the same room.

Yes I would if they started it. I see no moral difference between the way I treat Gnu's vs how you treated me when you told Tony and Walter "not to sink down to my level".

So it's Ok for you to express moral outrage at what you preceve as my "bad behavior" but I may not do so to others?

How is that fair?

>Speaking frankly, your internet manners are an embarrassment.

So is doing hit & runs like you did last time you sideswiped me. But this time you where man enough to answer so I will give you that.

BenYachov said...

>In general, Victor's very fine website is an oasis of sanity in an ocean of, were we all in cars, could only be described as perpetual road rage. Let's keep it that way.

I can't fault your myopic misplaced optimism even if I don't
share it.


>My own goal in posting things is to write in such a manner, that were I ever to meet any of my fellow posters, I would have nothing to be embarrassed about or have to apologize for.

So who is stopping you? But as I seem to recall even you lose your temper now and then.

BenYachov said...

But of course my opinion "Dumbest Pop Atheist argument ever" stands.

BenYachov said...

@Oh & BTW Bob


>Exodus 32 is no problem whatsoever to the overwhelming majority of Christians who are neither Fundamentalists nor Literalists. The passage in question is allegory.

The Holy Church has never said Exodus 32 is understood as allegory. I am neither a Fundamentalist nor a Literalist & I find this claim silly.

I see nothing morally wrong with God executing 3,000 anarchists among a rebellious rabble.

Like I said I see no evidence Biblical or Extra Biblical the worship of the Golden Calf was benign.

Nor do I see how Moses can be compared to the 911 Terrorists. I live in NYC. I read the Post, the Daily News and glance at the Times. No mention of local Muslim Holy Men parting the Hudson River.

But I don't see how the Israelites can plead invincible ignorance via the Teachings of St. Justin Martyr, Pope Alexander VIII, Pius IX, St Pius X, Pius XII, JP2 or B16? They saw the plagues and walked threw the sea. They got what they deserved.

When our Lord Rides out of Heaven on a WhiteHorse on the Last Day. I believe if PhysicistDave runs up to him and spits in His eye he gets what's coming to him.

I refuse to apologize for Jesus or God.

Try it sometime.

Papalinton said...

Bob Prokop

"In general, Victor's very fine website is an oasis of sanity in an ocean of, were we all in cars, could only be described as perpetual road rage. Let's keep it that way."

Hear! Hear!
I'm with you all the way.

BenYachov said...

Now the passages about killing whole populations may be hyperbole including Children. But I believe God if He exists by definition has absolute moral rights over us. We live or die at His good pleasure.
God has no obligations towards us either.

I have little use for Protestant versions of the Divine Command Theory. The Thomist view is different. But computer programs can't complain if the Programer deletes them. So what is the basis of this silly claim God has moral obligations toward us?

BenYachov said...

>Hear! Hear!
I'm with you all the way.

Ok who are you and what did you do with Paps?

Anonymous said...

Ben, how can a being be considered morally good if he has no moral obligations?

Is God not even obligated to honor his scriptural promises?

By your definition it seems he could break his promises and would still have to be considered good, because he isn't obligated to keep his promises.

That seems to do irreparable damage to the meaning of the word "good."

PhysicistDave said...

B. Prokop wrote:
>Tony, Walter, "Physicist Dave", you're all better than Ben Yachov. don't descend to his level.

Well, you have a point.

BP also wrote:
> Just ignore him, and he'll go elsewhere.

From past experience with him and others like him, I don’t think he will.

There is an interesting conundrum here: BY is a human being. When he says something blatantly false, is it more respectful to him to ignore it or to point it out? You’re probably right that I’d be happier if I just ignored such guys, but… “All that is needed for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.”

Historically, when people like BY have been allowed to spread lies while decent men simply ignored them, far, far too often the evil men actually convinced the majority that they were right simply because the majority saw no one denying what the evil men said: it happened with the rise of Christianity, Nazism, Communism, nationalism, etc.

Do I get covered in slime when I engage the likes of BY? No doubt about it! And the majority of people do indeed conclude that I am just as bad as he is – he and I are both strongly criticizing each other, so by the relativistic standards of our age, we must both be equally wrong.

Believe me, I’ve dealt with this issue for the last fifty years: when I worked for the defense industry and I blew the whistle on contract fraud, I was none too popular, either.

If only there were hordes of people running around denouncing the liars and con artists and thieves and murderers… well, I’d be happy to just be my quiet little self.

But there aren’t. When I blew the whistle on the defense contract fraud, not even a single other person was willing to do it. And, on the thread BY linked to, I was the only consistent voice trying to point out how Ed Feser is conning people.

So, I will no doubt spend the rest of my life continuing to point out liars and con artists and continuing to get covered in slime as a result. And, I will never win the title of “Mr. Popularity.”

On the other hand, we have the good fortune to live in a country where the cost of telling the truth is actually not that great: I’ve had to change jobs once or twice when the suits got enraged over my telling the truth, and there are a bunch of guys around the ’Net like BY who hate my guts because I told the truth, but then there is nothing they can actually do about it.

So, I think I will go on telling the truth, get covered in slime as a result, and forego going to all of the nicest sorts of dinner parties put on by the nicest sorts of people who just hate someone who might blurt out the truth in the middle of the dinner party.

I hate dinner parties anyway, especially ones put on by the nicest sort of people.

But, truly, thanks for your honest advice. No doubt my life would have been more peaceful if I had been able to follow that advice!

All the best,

Dave

PhysicistDave said...

Incidentally, for everyone’s enjoyment, here is a brilliant essay by C. S. Lewis, “The Inner Ring” ( http://www.lewissociety.org/innerring.php ), which was brought to my attention by a friend who is a Christian minister. I am sure that those who are eager to join the Inner Ring lead much happier lives than those of us who are not.

Personally, I seem to suffer from a congenital defect that always prevents me from joining the Inner Ring or even wanting to join the Inner Ring. Such a pity.

PhysicistDave said...

Ben Yachov wrote:
> Now the passages about killing whole populations may be hyperbole including Children. But I believe God if He exists by definition has absolute moral rights over us. We live or die at His good pleasure.
>God has no obligations towards us either.

Since we seem not to have anyone here well-schooled in natural-law theology, I suppose I will have to step in and point out BY’s grave theological error.

If God behaved as BY claims, he would cease to be God. To be God includes the properties of omnibenevolence and rationality in the highest possible degree. And rationality at that level includes respect for the rationality of others, a desire that others employ their rational faculties to the fullest, etc. Morality consists fundamentally in respecting others as rational beings. Therefore, if God ceased to accept the strictures of morality as binding upon himself, he would cease to be God.

One of the gravest and most catastrophic errors made by the Protestant reformers was to separate the inherent morality of God from his nature, with the result that they did accept a “divine command” theory of morality.

BY also wrote:
> I have little use for Protestant versions of the Divine Command Theory. The Thomist view is different. But computer programs can't complain if the Programer deletes them. So what is the basis of this silly claim God has moral obligations toward us?

No doubt there is some difference between the “versions” of the “Divine Command Theory” held by some Protestants and BY’s view. But it is hard to see what it is.

The fundamental theological problem with BY's declaration is of course that humans are not computer programs: Christianity has always maintained that we are made in the image of God, meaning that we fundamentally share in his rational nature. And our sharing in his rational nature logically requires that the strictures of morality apply both to ourselves and to God.

Of course, this is all hypothetical for me, since I doubt that God exists. But the traditional reasoning -- and I think I am just enunciating traditional natural-law Christian reasoning here -- does seem to me to be sound.

If there is any honest-to-God theologian in the house, I would certainly welcome his doing a better job than I did in elaborating on this point.

C. S. Lewis, where are you when we need you?

Dave

BenYachov said...

So Bob

Dave writes:
>And, on the thread BY linked to, I was the only consistent voice trying to point out how Ed Feser is conning people.

So Dr. Feser whom Victor knows and is proud to quote on this very blog is a Conning People?

You buy that?

BDK was suckered into this "con" of Dr. feser's? So was Eric and Vic himself but Dave is the lone voice of sanity?

You buy that?

>BY is a human being. When he says something blatantly false,

What did I say that was false?

"I never insulted him or said anything bad to him?"

Go read the thread I link too and show me anything I said there that was even on the level of QUOTE"The pathological liar wrote......I like Aristotle. It's pathological liars like you and Feser that I would enjoy seeing in Hell for a few eaons."END QUOTE

I've been mean to people but wishing eternal damnation on anybody is a mortal sin of the first rank. I have never done that. I even appealed to Dave pointing out he was a Professor a PhD how does it bring him honor to slander a fellow academic?

>Historically, when people like BY have been allowed to spread lies while decent men simply ignored them, far, far too often the evil men actually convinced the majority that they were right simply because the majority saw no one denying what the evil men said: it happened with the rise of Christianity, Nazism, Communism, nationalism, etc.

So this refers to me(& Dr Feser? Again go back and read the thread. Love how Dave compairs Christianity to Nazism and Communism...I'm in good company.

Wow Dave you have no shame whatsoever?

Chutzpah overload!

BenYachov said...

>Since we seem not to have anyone here well-schooled in natural-law theology, I suppose I will have to step in and point out BY’s grave theological error.

So Dave claims to understand natural Law theology?

Anyone buy that?

My views come from Brian Davies THE REALITY OF GOD AND THE PROBLEM OF EVIL.

I learned about Davies from reading Feser.

I won't repeat them here or go on my traditional rant against Theistic Personalism while Lauding Classic Theism.

Pearls before swine etc...

But Dave is rocking the Theistic Personalism here.

BenYachov said...

>we are made in the image of God, meaning that we fundamentally share in his rational nature.

Not even close. A walking talking violation of the teaching of Aquinas and the Church.

Our Rational nature is analogously compared to God's but not unequivocally or whole equivocally compared to God.

Gee Dave maybe if you actual read THE LAST SUPERSTITION you might actually know this.

BenYachov said...

BTW Dave,

>To be God includes the properties of omnibenevolence and rationality in the highest possible degree.

Sorry but as Brian Davies points out God is not a moral agent. In fact it is incoherent to suggest he is one? Not just impious but incoherent.

Oh heck I might as well repost the arguments.

BenYachov said...

Do try and keep up Dave.

Brian Davies solution to the so called "problem of evil".
My ruff summery of it.

The problem of Evil presupposes God's Goodness consists of perfect moral goodness. Or more accurately that God is a perfect moral agent.
Some attempts to defend God based on this presupposition mostly consist of showing how it is logically impossible for God to give us some goods without allowing some evil. Father Brian Davies thinks these arguments thought powerful ultimately fail(but might have some small validity). But don't waste your time.

(side note the Thomistic view of omnipotence tells us God cannot do the logically impossible. Example: Can't God do anything? So why can't He make 2+2=5? Answer: God can do anything 2=2=5 does not describe anything. It describes nothing and gives new meaning to the phrase "There is nothing God cannot do". Same applies to to Rock so heavy blah blah blah)

Brian Davies argues OTOH given a Classical understanding of the nature of God instead of an anthropomorphic Theistic Personalist one.

God's Goodness cannot be conceived of coherently as moral goodness. God is not and cannot by nature coherently be conceived of as a moral agent unequivocally the same way a human might be conceived thus. That is not to say God is not in some sense the same as what a morally good human person is but He is not unequivocally the same.

We might ask since God contains all Perfections does it not follow God has perfect muscle tone? Clearly not? That would be incoherent. Since God cannot have perfect muscle tone without having muscles. But if God had muscles he would be composite not simple in substance and thus not perfect. Also Muscles have potency that become actual while God is purely actual. If God had muscles He could not be purely actual. We can say God is Perfection Itself. Being Itself and Existence Itself. Since His existence and Essence are identical He can be the metaphysical source of perfection in perfect muscle tone without himself having muscles or perfect muscle tone.

In a like manner given the Thomistic Definition of Goodness. God can be the source of the Goodness in moral agency without being a moral agent Himself. We can't say coherently God is sober, temperate and Chaste they have no meaning given His Nature. Moral Agents share a moral community and God is not a member of a community with us given His wholly Other nature. Thus God cannot coherently be called a moral agent. Thus the problem of Evil becomes a non-problem.

As Davies says people who argue the Problem of Evil on both sides, Atheist and Theist have largely been wasting their lives. It's like arguing about wither or not Tennis players should be able to run the mile in under 10 minutes. A Tennis player is not the sort of athlete concerned with running the mile but playing tennis. God is not a moral agent. God's Goodness is not moral Goodness. Though he is the metaphysical source of the Goodness in morality. God's goodness is something else. Being the First Cause and the Final Cause and goal of all things.

But someone else will have to go into that later.

We don't let God off the hook. Rather it seems God isn't the sort of Thing that can coherently be hooked in the first place.

Thus I yawn at the Problem of Evil.

BenYachov said...

additional:

Morality requires obligations. God coherently doesn't and cannot have obligations to us. Morality requires sharing a moral community under a moral law. God doesn't and cannot coherently be said to share a community with us. God can be said to be the moral law by nature but God is not under the moral law since it is logically incoherent to claim God can be under Himself.

It doesn't mean God can do anything He wants to us given the Classic understanding of His nature this is impossible but God has no obligations to us.

Thank God.

BenYachov said...

Another good paper on the subject is

Against theodicy : a response to Peter Forrest
By N.N. Trakakis,

I found a copy online and download it but for some reason when I google it I can no longer find a free copy.

That sucks.

BenYachov said...

As the Agnostic Theist and Thomistic Expert & critic Anthony Kenny said "Morality presupposes a moral community, and a moral community must be of beings with a common language, roughly equal power, and roughly similar needs, desires and interests. God can no more be part of a moral community with them than he can be part of a political community with them."


Aristotle said, we cannot attribute moral virtues to divinity: the praise would be vulgar. Equally, moral blame would be laughable.

This I copied from a blog post that no longer exists.

QUOTE"God As Morally Deficient
The point for now is just to indicate how different the classical theist’s conception of divine goodness is from that of the theistic personalist – and, for that matter, from the conception taken for granted by atheists who suggest that the existence of evil shows that God, if He exists, must in some way be morally deficient.

While God is not a Platonic Form, for the classical theist, to suggest that God is in some way morally deficient nevertheless makes about as much sense as suggesting that Plato’s Form of the Good might be morally deficient. The suggestion is unintelligible both because characterizing the God of classical theism as either virtuous or vicious is unintelligible, and because characterizing Him as deficient in any way is unintelligible. An atheist could intelligibly deny that such a God exists at all (just as he could intelligibly deny the existence of Platonic Forms), but to suggest that the God of classical theism might be morally deficient merely shows that such an atheist does not understand the view he is criticizing (just as an opponent of Platonism who suggested that the Form of the Good might be unloving or vicious would only show thereby that he doesn’t understand what sort of thing a Form is supposed to be)."END QUOTE

BenYachov said...

From the same post.

The theistic personalist or neo-theist conceives of God essentially as a person comparable to human persons, only without the limitations we have. The idea is to begin with what we know about human beings and then to abstract away first the body, then our temporal limitations, then our epistemological and volitional confinement to knowing about and having control over only a particular point of space and time, then our moral defects, and to keep going until we arrive at the notion of a being who has power, knowledge, and goodness like ours but to an unlimited degree.
Theistic personalism or neo-theism also rejects divine simplicity and its implications; indeed, this is the motivation for developing a conception of God by abstracting from our conception of human persons, for the theistic personalist objects to the notion of God as immutable, impassible, and eternal – finding it too cold and otherworldly, and incompatible with a literal reading of various biblical passages – and typically has philosophical objections to the notion of divine simplicity. Davies identifies Alvin Plantinga and Richard Swinburne as theistic personalists.END QUOTE

As a Catholic & based on the Tradition of the Church I reject Theistic personalism. Indeed I am a total Strong Atheist as to the existence of any Theistic Personalist view of God...

But Classic Theism OTOH...LOVE IT & HIM!!!:-)

BenYachov said...

Classic Theism as defined by Philosopher Edward Feser

QUOTE"God is not an object or substance alongside other objects or substances in the world; rather, He is pure being or existence itself, utterly distinct from the world of time, space, and things, underlying and maintaining them in being at every moment, and apart from whose ongoing conserving action they would be instantly annihilated. The world is not an independent object in the sense of something that might carry on if God were to “go away”; it is more like the music produced by a musician, which exists only when he plays and vanishes the moment he stops. None of the concepts we apply to things in the world, including to ourselves, apply to God in anything but an analogous sense. Hence, for example, we may say that God is “personal” insofar as He is not less than a person, the way an animal is less than a person. But God is not literally “a person” in the sense of being one individual thing among others who reasons, chooses, has moral obligations, etc. Such concepts make no sense when literally applied to God."

The above view is what I would call God. It's the God of the Church, the Fathers, Thomas Merton etc.....

Of course Dave's neo-fundamentalism doesn't even come close.

BenYachov said...

I wonder if Dave can really respond in a substantive manner?

I doubt it.....though I look forward to the mindless ridicule.

BenYachov said...

>One of the gravest and most catastrophic errors made by the Protestant reformers was to separate the inherent morality of God from his nature, with the result that they did accept a “divine command” theory of morality.

Yes but only for those who conceived of God in an Anthropomorphic Theistic Personalist manner. Of course this problem goes away with Classic Theism because you no longer have a "god" that is nothing more than a Metahuman.

You have something that is much more profound.

BenYachov said...

Additional:

The praise God gets in the Bible is not moral praise.

We don't say of God "Job well done" as if He could somehow fail. Nor is the praise of a nature that lauds God for doing His duty. Rather the praise is gratuitous. If I have money trouble and my Father bails me out well my Father could be praised but as my Father he is sort of obliged to help me.

OTOH Donald Trump doesn't know me from Adam and has no obligation to help me out in that manner. But if he did it he would get the praise due someone who does a Gracious thing he wasn't really obliged to do.

That is what we have when we praise God for the Good he does.

BenYachov said...

Anon wrote:
>Ben, how can a being be considered morally good if he has no moral obligations?

Simple, God cannot coherently be called morally Good. See above.

>Is God not even obligated to honor his scriptural promises?

God has to follow His own will (which is unchanging) by necessity.

>By your definition it seems he could break his promises and would still have to be considered good,

Sounds like you see God as a Human person who exists in Time. I don't believe such a god exists.

See above.

>because he isn't obligated to keep his promises.

Not having any obligations to us doesn't equal God not fulfilling His own will which He must do by necessity. God can will from all eternity to save my life in a Car crash but God is not obligated to Will my survival in a Car Crash. He could have willed from all eternity I die in said crash. He doesn't have to save my life. But he will keep his promises because he cannot act against what he has willed.

>That seems to do irreparable damage to the meaning of the word "good."

Only if you define Good solely as moral Goodness. My Cat was a good Cat but She wasn't morally Good. I can have a good rootbeer float but it doesn't cease to be Good just because it didn't stop the holocaust.

We have to be Morally Good since we are under the moral Law. God is in His nature the Moral Law and thus can't be under himself.

BenYachov said...

Finally in a sense PhysicistDave is correct.

>And our sharing in his rational nature logically requires that the strictures of morality apply both to ourselves and to God.

That is a flawless argument against any Theistic Personalist view of God.
By definition a Theistic Personalist God has to be moral since such a "god" can be compared to a human being in an unequivocal manner.

The only difference being the TP "god" is just like us but without our limitations.

Like Riker with Q powers(first season episode of STTNG).

But historically that "god" is a late comer. Not the God of historic Christianity or Judaism.

PhysicistDave said...

Ben Yachov wrote to me:
>An atheist could intelligibly deny that such a God exists at all (just as he could intelligibly deny the existence of Platonic Forms), but to suggest that the God of classical theism might be morally deficient merely shows that such an atheist does not understand the view he is criticizing...

But a God who ordered the murder of the 3,000 in Exodus 32 *would* be morally deficient.

From which it logically follows that either Yahweh did not order the mass murders or Yahweh is not really God (or both).

“Both” would be my bet.

In either case, a theist can be comfortable condemning the murder.

Therefore, JohnC is right and you are wrong.

Quod erat demonstrandum.

And, Ben, I must give you an award for spending much more time on a detailed exegesis of one of my attempts at theology than anyone has ever spent before or is ever likely to spend again.

I am honored.

PhysicistDave said...

Ben Yachov wrote:
> So Dr. Feser whom Victor knows and is proud to quote on this very blog is a Conning People?
>You buy that?
> BDK was suckered into this "con" of Dr. feser's? So was Eric and Vic himself but Dave is the lone voice of sanity?

Yes, because I am scientifically literate, especially in physics and math, which is why Stanford gave me that Ph.D. (the biology Ph.D. in the family is held by my wife).

The kindest one can say of Feser is that, in “The Last Superstition,” he shows incredibly careless and reckless disregard for the facts in science and math. If he had bothered to check with competent scientists, he could easily have avoided those errors, and he would have learned that science is not compatible with his metaphysics.

Feser didn’t bother and he didn’t care.

Yeah, I call that a heck of a con game – using science, a subject of which he is woefully ignorant, to prop up his philosophy, which is in fact inconsistent with accurate science.

I went into great detail about that in the other thread, based on my extensive knowledge of those subjects, and was rewarded with enormous contempt and a great deal of verbal abuse from you and others for pointing out the truth. And, I was right to respond to that abuse by giving an accurate evaluation of you and your friends.

I’d do it again; probably I will do it again.

The Scientific Revolution, as textbooks on the history of science note, was a revolt against Aristotelian metaphysics. There is a reason for that: Aristotelian metaphysics is inconsistent with the mechanistic way in which we scientists have learned that nature actually works.

Feser unwittingly reveals this in his attempt to argue for final causes, etc. in “The Last Superstition”: he makes numerous scientific errors in his trying to do so, and, without those errors, his argument collapses.

Yes, I am more qualified that you, Feser, Vic, or many of the other people who frequent this site to make these points about science. I really am a physicist.

I know that saying this make me elitist, arrogant, snobbish, anti-democratic, and all the rest. But, it is nonetheless true.

Modern neo-Aristotelians who are falsely claiming that neo-Aristotelian metaphysics is consistent with modern science are indeed engaged in a colossal, dishonest, and contemptible con game based on misrepresenting science.

Dave

GREV said...

So physicist Dave -- are you familiar with the work New Proofs for the existence of God? Which provides an interesting summary of many of the latest findings in physics.

I am not a physicist, but these findings provide an interesting introduction into the case for there being a Super Intelligent Creator Being. The evidence cited, not my hopeful extrapolations.

Now whether one wants to make the case for that Creator Being --being God is another matter.

Regarding your comments about the slaughter of people in the OT.

Whether I like it or not is not what is really at issue. Though I would hope a person would not like it.

Your position seems to be that I the creature can judge the Creator.

A position I find untenable and one that purely on the basis of the catergory difference between creature and Creator -- unsustainable.

Papalinton said...

Ben
Close your mouth. I'm getting drenched.

Papalinton said...

PhysicistDave
"Modern neo-Aristotelians who are falsely claiming that neo-Aristotelian metaphysics is consistent with modern science are indeed engaged in a colossal, dishonest, and contemptible con game based on misrepresenting science."

Beautifully encapsulated. As soon as one adds the meta- prefix to the word 'physics', one is thrown into the world of superstition and woo, a world replete with gods and faeries, and demons and angels, and malevolent spirits and ghosts and monsters under the bed and things that go bump in the night. From here there are two trajectories:

1. Old-time religion, and

2. New Age woo-woo.

Twins. Only their mother can tell them apart.

Walter said...

GREV: Your position seems to be that I the creature can judge the Creator.

Not speaking for Dave but I would say that he is judging the actions of a character in a book that supposedly contains the recorded exploits of a deity. And for the record, every time a Christian goes on and on about how good God is, they are also judging him by his supposed actions.

BenYachov said...

>Feser unwittingly reveals this in his attempt to argue for final causes, etc. in “The Last Superstition”: he makes numerous scientific errors in his trying to do so, and, without those errors, his argument collapses.

This of course is a bold faced lie. You where called out on it and refuted back then to which you responded by ranting how you wish He & I could burn in Hell and other hateful vicious rants. All of which I have documented.

Now I have the book in Question and a scanner. So you can't get away with making vague unsubstantiated charges.

I'll just post the relevant pages. Others can see your looney claims for what they are the rants of a jealous insecure academic wash out.

LIST OF BRUTE FACTS:

1. Feser makes no scientific arguments only philosophical ones.

2. Nor does he in fact make any scientific errors per say since he makes no assertions of scientific fact on his own authority.

3. He wrote a book of philosophy that gives a philosophical argument for the existence of God not a scientific one. Indeed Feser says over and over the case for God is philosophical not scientific.

So put up or shut up.

Cite one "scientific error" and I will post the whole page.

Put up or shut up.

BenYachov said...

>Modern neo-Aristotelians who are falsely claiming that neo-Aristotelian metaphysics is consistent with modern science are indeed engaged in a colossal, dishonest, and contemptible con game based on misrepresenting science.

Spoken like a true philosophical illiterate.

BenYachov said...

>Yes, I am more qualified that you, Feser, Vic, or many of the other people who frequent this site to make these points about science. I really am a physicist.

But of course you are clearly unqualified to make any claims about philosophy and that seems to include philosophy of science.

So show us where Feser makes any scientific claims in the book in question. Page numbers. I'll post the relevant pages.

Put up or shut up.

BenYachov said...

Dave equates metaphysics with physics?

Not a good sign.

BenYachov said...

You couldn't even interact with Davies argument? Where did you get that PhD? From a box of Jacks?

BenYachov said...

>I went into great detail about that in the other thread,

Another lie you never cited him once except out of context.

So what are you gonna do Dave? Give a dozen or so one liners cited out of context from a dozen pages so I can't keep up with posting whole pages?

That would be a good tactical move but an admission I'm right. Since no single citation will back up your claim.

Tony Hoffman said...

Wow. Ben, I have long ago stopped reading most of your comments. However, I commend you for continuing to elicit responses from PhysicistDave, from whose comments I have learned a great deal.

I read all of PD’s comments on the blog you linked to his morning, and I enjoyed them all I have bookmarked that link; there are a lot of book recommendations in there from PD, among other things, and I’d like to check them out. (I’ve often thought that the difference between a good and bad college are the syllabi, and getting PD’s recommendations on topics that I’d like to understand better probably saved me good money and lots of wasted time.)

BProkop: “Tony, Walter, "Physicist Dave", you're all better than Ben Yachov. don't descend to his level. Just ignore him, and he'll go elsewhere.”

Apparently not.

PD, outstanding comments. I’ve enjoyed them all. Just kudos to you for continuing, because I know that feeling that follows the unrelenting assault of un-reason so bizarre that it almost gives you vertigo. Thanks so much for taking the time to engage and comment here.

Papalinton said...

"PD, outstanding comments. I’ve enjoyed them all. Just kudos to you for continuing, because I know that feeling that follows the unrelenting assault of un-reason so bizarre that it almost gives you vertigo. Thanks so much for taking the time to engage and comment here."

Ditto

BenYachov said...

So Tony all you can give me is a "Rah! Rah! Go Dave!" response?

No specifics?

That's pretty tedious. I expected better from you then mere mindless tribalism.

>Ben, I have long ago stopped reading most of your comments.

Then how can you judge their content and know that Dave's are better by comparison?

That's a neat trick.

>I read all of PD’s comments on the blog you linked to his morning,

You do realize the blog in question is THIS VERY BLOG? Right?

But Dave is a fellow Atheist & I guess that means for you my fellow Tribemen right or wrong.

That makes me sad Tony. I really thought you where better than that.

Perhaps this is a mere momentary lapse?

BenYachov said...

Of course Tony I've read THE LAST SUPERSTITION. You haven't. BDK has read it & he said Dave misread it.

If you are only impressed by dramatic flair in retoric and not intellectual content then that is your loss.

I have always been polite to you and I have never attacked you personally.


We have even agreed on occasion.

But I will still treat you civilly because I believe deep down you are not really a Gnu.

Paps and Dave OTOH are hopeless.

BenYachov said...

>The Scientific Revolution, as textbooks on the history of science note, was a revolt against Aristotelian metaphysics.

Funny Dave your original argument was Feser made scientific errors. Now your revised argument is Feser is arguing for Aristotelian Metaphysics vs the metaphysics of Mechanism.

Which of course it what I have been trying in vain to tell you. Now you admit I was right yet don't have the balls to admit you misread Feser.

>There is a reason for that: Aristotelian metaphysics is inconsistent with the mechanistic way in which we scientists have learned that nature actually works.

Where does Feser literally make that argument?

Citation please?

Rather he argues the Philosophy of Mechanism has not in fact overthrown the Classic Philosophy. But the scientific method is not at war with Aristotle. Feser never says so. Nor is Mechanistic Philosophy the only model Scientists may use.

Heck one smart Atheist Physicist who dropped by Feser's blog pointed out a Four dimensional theory of time was not compatible with Aristotle but it was compatible with Parmenides. No mention of Mechanism thought.

Nice try.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Wait don't pull me in here. :O I think PD did give an extremely uncharitable reading of Fesr, but Feser didn't do himself any favors in his response (he should have admitted he was unclear, or picked a bad example with the arm moving the stick thing).

BenYachov said...

>Wait don't pull me in here. :O

I apologize then friend and will honor your wishes.


>I think PD did give an extremely uncharitable reading of Fesr, but Feser didn't do himself any favors in his response (he should have admitted he was unclear, or picked a bad example with the arm moving the stick thing).

I never really agreed with that assessment now that I re-read it but because of your fair mindedness in contrast to Dave wackyness I didn't think it worth disputing.

Sorry again friend.

BDK is not in this discussion.

BenYachov said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BenYachov said...

Of course it's more of competing vitriolic monologs then a discussion with Dave having his own little cheerleading section (Paps, & Tony).

BenYachov said...

additional:

>but Feser didn't do himself any favors in his response.

You are thinking of Feser's response to Beguiled. Feser has never to my knowledge ever responded to Dave. I don't think he even know he exists.

PhysicistDave said...

GREV wrote to me:

>So physicist Dave -- are you familiar with the work New Proofs for the existence of God? Which provides an interesting summary of many of the latest findings in physics.

Did a competent, respected scientist write it, or a philosopher or theologian?

GREV also wrote:
> I am not a physicist…

Indeed.

Look: the number of books claiming to show that religion is true is so huge that no single human being is even aware of most of those books, much less able to read all of them. There has to be a minimal showing of credibility to raise any honest person’s interest.

Science as a whole easily meets that minimal showing of credibility: Cell phones, lasers, nuclear bombs, etc. all do indeed work, they are all based on our understanding of physics, and if physicists’ understanding is completely wrong, it is hard to see how we built such things. Try doing it yourself with no knowledge of physics and no hints that come from those who do know some physics. Just try it.

Almost no one really believes physics is complete nonsense (anyone who does, please show your confidence by standing next to a nuclear bomb the next time someone tests one!).

On the other hand, it is notorious that the harshest critics of various brands of theology and philosophy are commonly other philosophers and theologians. BY has nicely demonstrated that here with his harsh criticisms of what he admits to be a widespread view of God among many theists.

I have read numerous books claiming to show science implies theism. All crack-pot to the core. You want to show me that the book you suggest is different? Well.. if it is, why aren’t all the theists praising it from the rooftops, exclaiming that *finally* they have an author who isn’t a crack-pot?

Dave

BenYachov said...

1949 called Dave they want their Logical Positivism back!

(Stole that line from Beckwith)

GREV said...

Dave -- your comments imply a certain level of hostility and unwillingness to honestly deal with matters. New Proofs is written by a physicist and a Jesuit priest.

Your crowd constantly demands that we deal with and follow the evidence. I am doing that. The citations in this work of recent work in physics all keep coming back to giving a person good reasons, good reasons to believe that the evidence is telling as we can have confidence in a Super Intelligent Creator being -- being the cause of all things.

You want to be hostile. Fine. But it is somewhat boring and does little to commend your cause for any sort of careful consideration.


Your hostility confirms my path of talking with an atheist biologist philosopher. We respect one another. It does wonders for generating meaningful conversations.

I learn many things from him for which I am grateful.

GREV said...

Walter -- Not speaking for Dave but I would say that he is judging the actions of a character in a book that supposedly contains the recorded exploits of a deity. And for the record, every time a Christian goes on and on about how good God is, they are also judging him by his supposed actions.

Walter, Dave is free to do so and so is anyone else who is against God.

I am just saying if God is real, it is an unsustainble and unprofitable position.

And no a Christian is not judging God, you are mistaken there.

Thanks for the reply.

Anonymous said...

Walter said: Very liberal Christian Universalists are the only Christians who can claim any moral high ground IMO. And the liberal/progressive types are usually the ones who allegorize the nasty passages away.

Then I guess all the Church Fathers were "liberal/progressive types."

Walter said...

And no a Christian is not judging God, you are mistaken there.

Call it "evaluating" then if the word "judging" gives you an uncomfortable feeling, but all of us, believer and unbeliever alike, read these stories in the bible and we evaluate the moral character of Yahweh, Jesus, etc..

My evaluation of Yahweh in the Hebrew bible is not a favorable one. In fact, it is a problem for many believers who have to either allegorize the passages, or come up with convoluted excuses as to why it's okay for Yahweh to order things that most of us consider to be morally repugnant.

PhysicistDave said...

BY wrote to me:
>>[Dave]Feser unwittingly reveals this in his attempt to argue for final causes, etc. in “The Last Superstition”: he makes numerous scientific errors in his trying to do so, and, without those errors, his argument collapses.
>[BY]This of course is a bold faced lie. You where called out on it and refuted back then

Look: I have a Ph.D. from Stanford in physics; I have published papers in pure science; I hold various patents on applying math and science to computer and satellite-communication systems.

But when I point out scientific errors in what Feser says, I am “refuted” simply because several of you guys without any scientific education at all say I am wrong?

Well… an interesting use of the word “refuted,” BY!

And, my refusal to acknowledge that your knowledge of science is superior to mine makes *me* a liar?

OK.

BY also wrote:
>>[Dave] The Scientific Revolution, as textbooks on the history of science note, was a revolt against Aristotelian metaphysics.
>[BY] Funny Dave your original argument was Feser made scientific errors. Now your revised argument is Feser is arguing for Aristotelian Metaphysics vs the metaphysics of Mechanism.

No, the quote you give from me says nothing of the sort. Feser is trying to argue against mechanism, but his attempts to do so are destroyed by the fact that he mangles the science.

BY also wrote:
> You couldn't even interact with Davies argument?

BY, I do not think God exists!!! Why on earth would I be interested in Davies’ claims about the true nature of God. I think your denial of God’s personhood makes you a clear-cut heretic: Three Persons sharing one substance, and all that. But, I do not really care. I’m more interested in the true nature of a horcrux, which my kids still cannot explain to me, despite their being Potter fanatics.

BY also wrote
>>[Dave]I went into great detail about that in the other thread,
>[BY]Another lie you never cited him once except out of context.

And, that, BY, shows why you are so universally loved and respected!

Actually, we have now caught you in a clear-cult definite lie that anyone can easily check.

Anyone, just go to https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=10584495&postID=7269891037191878993 and do a search on “p.82” and “page 92”. You will turn up two separate verbatim quotes by me from Feser, contrary to BY’s claim.

BY is lying, as he always must, since he is defending the purest evil.

The Prince of Evil knows his own, like you, eh, BY?

BY also wrote:
>So show us where Feser makes any scientific claims in the book in question. Page numbers. I'll post the relevant pages.

As I just proved, I did that, citing specific pages (I gave specific examples from page 82 and page 92, for example), on the earlier thread. Anyone who wants to read it can go there. I do not feel like re-posting everything I already explained there.

BY also wrote:
>Dave equates metaphysics with physics?

No, I claim physics trumps metaphysics. Almost all writing on metaphysics is utter nonsense, not as judged by me but by the authors’ fellow philosophers.

I think it is time to take philosophy away from the philosophers and hand it over to people who are serious.

BY, I’m about done on this thread: I have proven that you lied on your claim that I only cited one example from Feser, and I think your claim that I was "refuted" because some people who know no science say I was wrong on the science is self-refuting. Some issues are finally settled. I don’t feel like flogging a dead horse much longer.

PhysicistDave said...

GREV wrote to me:
>Dave -- your comments imply a certain level of hostility and unwillingness to honestly deal with matters. New Proofs is written by a physicist and a Jesuit priest.

Gee, you think I am hostile to the idea of condoning the murder of 3,000 innocent people?

How ill-mannered of me!

I do not know of any Jesuit priest who is a well-respected physicist.

So, I guess that answers my question.

“Jesuit priest” is a bit like “astrologer” to most of us scientists, GREV: an astrologer may not be a con artist in every respect, but the burden of proof is on him to prove the contrary.

And, yes, I am indeed hostile – very, very hostile! – to con artists, liars, and apologists for mass murder.

BenYachov said...

@Dave

>Look: I have a Ph.D. from Stanford in physics;

This qualifies you to study philosophy Classical or not how?

>But when I point out scientific errors in what Feser.

Please do. I have the book and the scanner everyone here can read and judge for themselves if Feser was making any scientific claims.

>And, my refusal to acknowledge that your knowledge of science is superior to mine makes *me* a liar?

I never once claimed either Feser or I understand Science better than you do. I accuse you of being ignorant of philosophy. You inability to read plan English is obvious.

>No, the quote you give from me says nothing of the sort.

So it's not literal? I gottcha.

>Feser is trying to argue against mechanism,

Actually Mechanistic Philosophy. I read the book many times. I doubt Feser has anything against Mechanism per say & he never says so in any of his writings that I have read.

>but his attempts to do so are destroyed by the fact that he mangles the science.

We wait with baited breath for you to prove this statement. After all we have the text. You are such a brilliant scientist. Surely you can cite a chapter or verse where he specifically does this?

It's shouldn't be hard for a PhD? Paps I excuse because he is just a public school teacher. You OTOH are our intellectual superior. So where is the beef?

>BY, I do not think God exists!!! Why on earth would I be interested in Davies’ claims about the true nature of God.

Because you have to deal with the God I actually believe in not the one JC believes in or the one you wish I believed in because your one size fits all Gnu'Atheist polemic is intellectually inadiqute. That's why.

Otherwise your arguments against it mean nothing. It's like finding an error in the Koran & expecting a Baptist to give a shit.

BenYachov said...

>Actually, we have now caught you in a clear-cult definite lie that anyone can easily check.

So you cited him twice out of context not once? A petty mistake on my part. Big deal your charges where still suspiciously identical to those of Unbeguiled. I suspect that is where you cribbed them.

Thought it seems by now you have read the book. Your story has changed.

BenYachov said...

>No, I claim physics trumps metaphysics.

That makes about as much sense as saying Physics trumps biology or Physics trumps Math? What incoherent blather!

Category mistake much?

>Almost all writing on metaphysics is utter nonsense, not as judged by me but by the authors’ fellow philosophers.

Well a Philosopher would be a more qualified and credible critic than a stay at home physicist with anger issues. But maybe you should read them and actually learn their arguments then come back and make the philosophical case that philosophy is bunk.

But of course that would be self referential but logic and Gnu'Atehism don't mix.

>I think it is time to take philosophy away from the philosophers and hand it over to people who are serious.

So philosophy should be taken from those who study it academically & given to those who don't understand it? Gotcha! That makes perfect sense!

Let's give Feser & Victor control over the Hadron collider and see how that works out.

Wow worst than Paps.....

>I’m about done on this thread:

Rather you are totally gone.

BenYachov said...

>your claim that I was "refuted" because some people who know no science say I was wrong on the science.

You are delusional at this point Dave. You have given no examples of scientific wrongness on the part of Feser(I guess the threat of posting his actual words in context keeps you at bay) & you did not show he in fact made any scientific claims in the first place. No can you. There is no evidence.

Dave when I say "The Sun will rise tomorrow at 6:00am" most normal rational dudes without anger issues know I am not in fact intending to make a pro-Geocentric scientific claim. Feser said twice he was giving stock examples to illustrate the difference between accidental vs essential causal series.

You can't seem to understand that simple fact.

BenYachov said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BenYachov said...

>BY is lying, as he always must, since he is defending the purest evil.

>The Prince of Evil knows his own, like you, eh, BY?


This speaks for itself.

PhysicistDave said...

GREV,

You have provided excellent proof of why people like me do not at all trust people like you and why we would be fools to trust you.

You wrote:
> New Proofs is written by a physicist and a Jesuit priest.

Well, here is Bob Spitzer’s bio at the site of the institute he heads:
http://www.magisreasonfaith.org/files/pdfs/spitzerbio.pdf

Not a word about his being a physicist, having a degree in physics or having published any research at all in physics. (And, no, his essay on “Indications of Supernatural Design in Big Bang Cosmology” does not count as physics research. The “Journal of Ultimate Reality and Meaning” is not exactly an accepted physics journal!)

Were you intentionally lying in claiming Bob is a physicist? Or did you just make it up with careless and reckless disregard for the truth?

Could have been either, I suppose.

But this is Christianity today – one falsehood piled upon another. Your falsehood turned out to be trivial to uncover. But, we honest folks do not have infinite time. We cannot spend our entire lives and them some uncovering all the lies.

Hence the well-known saying: “Scratch a Christian, find a liar.”

Dave

PhysicistDave said...

Well, BY, I have proven conclusively that you lied.

And, I have shown how silly your claim is that I was refuted by scientific illiterates such as yourself (and, yes, you and others did challenge me on the science and the math, as anyone looking back on the earlier thread can see -- specifically on the issue of geometry).

And, you have admitted that you refuse to condemn mass murder when carried out at God's commands.

I think you have enabled me to show everything I wished to show.

Thanks for your help.

I now find pointing out GREV's falsehoods more interesting than pointing out your falsehoods. I do not think any honest person, theist or atheist, reading through this thread could fail to see you for what you are.

Sincerely, thanks again.

GREV said...

Dave -- you need to put a lid on your hostility or does it serve something for you?

A physicist is co-author or I should have said contributor to the book -- see the Table of Contents available at amazon -- of the book. A little research would have revealed that. Name of Bruce Gordon.

Your rant does little to impress and little to address his point of taking the evidence -- remember the evidence -- detailing it and commenting on it -- if you have problems with his conclusions -- fine. By try a little less hostility.

Does little to commend what you write.

PhysicistDave said...

Okay, BY, one parting point.

You wrote:
> Feser said twice he was giving stock examples to illustrate the difference between accidental vs essential causal series.

And, the stock examples happen to be scientifically wrong.

That is a problem.

And, I have never seen anyone able to show that neo-Aristotelian metaphysics is consistent with science. All the attempts to do so always end up mangling the science, just as Feser does.

I know this means nothing to you. You have faith.

Faith or science, that is the choice.

GREV said...

I am still in the midst of unpacking or I could cite directly from the book New Proofs.

BenYachov said...

Here is a lose end.

>I think your denial of God’s personhood makes you a clear-cut heretic:

To any Evangelical Protestant sect populated by dogmatic Theistic Personalist yes.


But my view is the orthodox Catholic view.

Rather I deny God is a person in the unequivocal sense. But every orthodox Catholic Theologian believes that.

God is personal in the analogous sense. But God is clearly not a human person or unequivocally like a human person.

Live with it.

BenYachov said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BenYachov said...

>And, the stock examples happen to be scientifically wrong.

So is saying "The Sun will rise at 6:00am.:

But it wasn't intended as a scientific statement and the same applies to Feser.

Fail!

BenYachov said...

>I know this means nothing to you. You have faith.

Even if I denied God tomorrow I would still think your arguments are bogus.

I believe in Reason. I'm a Thomist. Reason proceeds Faith as the great Theologian taught. One must have reason to believe and a motivation for belief.

GREV said...

Does not the practice of science require a measure of faith?

BenYachov said...

>(and, yes, you and others did challenge me on the science and the math, as anyone looking back on the earlier thread can see -- specifically on the issue of geometry).

Rather I was making fun of you. I was treating the subject with the same ignorant flippant disdain you treat philosophy. It was fun.

PhysicistDave said...

GREV wrote to me:
> I am still in the midst of unpacking or I could cite directly from the book New Proofs.

No, you can’t.

The fact that his own bio does not indicate that he has a degree in physics puts an end to it. He is not a physicist. The fact that you cannot just say “OOPS!” is very telling.

BenYachov said...

>And, you have admitted that you refuse to condemn mass murder when carried out at God's commands.

I made a specific argument which you ignored. At least Walter argued something to the effect of "That's not true since that is not what happened".

You didn't even do that.

Fail.

GREV said...

Dave: Are you so hostile that you cannot even read? Just told you that a physicist contributed to the book.

The only thing that is telling here is your hostility.

PhysicistDave said...

GREV wrote to me:
> Does not the practice of science require a measure of faith?

In the sense that you religious con artists use the term, no, quite the contrary.

As my own mentor, the Nobel laureate Richard Feynman emphasized, the whole driving force of science is the attempt to prove our own ideas wrong. And, believe me, we do so with depressing frequency: the ratio of ideas that survive the most rigorous of tests to those that are dumped into the trash-bin of history is very low.

No, science is characterized by the exact opposite of faith: an intense attempt to prove that proposed hypotheses are wrong.

I know you do not get this – as shown by your careless claim that Bob Spitzer is a physicist.

Try really learning some serious science and your whole view on life will change radically, and for the better.

Abandon faith, spit out faith as the foul-mouthed poison that it is.

Come out of the dark cave of faith and into the light of skeptical criticism: believe me, the air is a lot fresher out here! After all, you can always go back into the darkness, if you wish, can’t you?

PhysicistDave said...

Yes, BY, I have disdain for philosophy and you have disdain for math and science.

The difference is that there is overwhelming reason to take science seriously and overwhelming reasons to treat philosophy and theology with contempt, reasons most forcefully enunciated by philosophers and theologians themselves.

That is the real Pascal’s wager: which would you rather risk – that scientists are wrong about how a nuclear bomb works (good, stand next to one when it is tested!) or that theologians are wrong when they pontificate about the nature of God, the afterlife, etc. (a sure thing, since, as you yourself point out on this thread, theologians agree on just about nothing)?

The human race is looking at that wager and, understandably enough, drifting over to my side: antibiotics, cell phones, laser surgery, etc. vs. the mystery of the Trinity and hylemorphic dualism.

You don’t need to know much about science to find that a pretty easy choice!

Yes, BY, I have disdain for philosophy and theology and you have disdain for math and science. We have made our choice.

BenYachov said...

@GREV

Old joke.

A Hillbilly walks up to a man and says "Howdy! I would like you to meet my Wife and my Sister!".

Disturbingly there was only one woman sitting next to him.:-)

(No offense to actual Ozark People)

I guess Dave misunderstood "Physicist and a Jesuit" eh?

BenYachov said...

>Yes, BY, I have disdain for philosophy and you have disdain for math and science.

No I love Math, Science and philosophy. You need them all for mere natural knowledge.

Oh Dave what are we going to do with you?

GREV said...

Dave -- "I know you do not get this – as shown by your careless claim that Bob Spitzer is a physicist."

When will you get past your hostility and note that I said a phsicist contributed to the book? I said written by a physicist and a Jesuit priesst?

Can you even count? That is two different people. Spitzer and another person .... Bruce Gordon.

Your arrogance in denying to the Spitzer the right to comment is truly beath-taking.

If he is wrong, fine.

To deny the right to comment is very troubling and heavy handed.

And to continue calling a person or liar or being careless when the facts are being pointed out repeatedly betrays a certain meanness of spirit.

Your admitting to who your mentor or supervisor was is very telling.

GREV said...

Dave -- "Come out of the dark cave of faith and into the light of skeptical criticism: believe me, the air is a lot fresher out here! After all, you can always go back into the darkness, if you wish, can’t you?"

What an ending to your sermon!

The question remains; what if in this fresh air you cannot properly account for knowledge?

Oh and I do upgrade my science all the time in my respectful discussions with my atheist philosopher biologist friend.

PhysicistDave said...

GREV wrote to me:
> A physicist is co-author or I should have said contributor to the book -- see the Table of Contents available at amazon -- of the book. A little research would have revealed that. Name of Bruce Gordon.

You really are a pathological liar, aren’t you?

Bruce Gordon is not a physicist, either!

His Ph.D. is in the history and philosophy of science, not physics!

“Philosopher” does not equal “physicist.”

Again, the fact that you cannot just humbly say "OOPS!" is very, very telling.

Okay, three strikes you’re out, GREV.

Enough of you – I’ve proven to any honest person’s satisfaction that you are just posting falsehoods with careless and reckless disregard of the truth.

BenYachov said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BenYachov said...

>I have disdain for philosophy.

The most honest thing you have said.

But here is you problem. If I deny God tomorrow I would still believe Philosophy (along with Math & Science) is necessary for natural knowledge.

I would still look down my nose at anti-Philosophy Gnu's with the same contempt I as a Theist hold for the beliefs of YEC.

I would be an Atheist Philosopher.

Live with it. Your version of atheism is too anti-intellectual & illogical for me.

GREV said...

Dave -- so I misread Mr. Gordon`s biography. I made a mistake. Wow!

You really need to calm down. You might live longer.

GREV said...

I make mistakes all the time -- I try not to revel in them or the mistakes of others.

GREV said...

The point remains -- the denial to people other then the high priests of science to comment on science is indeed anti-intellectual and not helpful to furthering any discussion of any sort.

BenYachov said...

Actually Bruce L. Gordon is a Canadian philosopher of science (physics), according to his online Wiki biography.

Clearly he has a professional understanding of physics.

Wow Dave you suck at this!

GREV said...

So, here is a partial list of what New Proofs deals with --

The Radiation Paradox

The Entropy Paradox

Increase in Cyclic Expansion

The Borde-Vilekin-Guth Theorem`s Boundary to Past-Time .....

and he goes on to say that a review of these works and others supports the reasonable likelihood of a beginning. See page 44.

Physicist Stephen Barr of Univ. of Deleware is cited as contirbuting to the chapter -- page 14.

So, review of the evidence. Is being offered. I say to anyone review their rreview and come to a judgement.

GREV said...

I believe that a scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy.
Richard Feynman

Couldn`t help myself! Now I must go and repent.

Tony Hoffman said...

BY: "Actually Bruce L. Gordon is a Canadian philosopher of science (physics), according to his online Wiki biography. Clearly he has a professional understanding of physics. Wow Dave you suck at this!"

What I find so funny is how terribly blind you are to what a laughingstock all of your comments with PD make you appear to be. You are truly better than a sock puppet.

GREV was caught in a falsehood – neither the author of the book he cited, nor a contributor, are physicists. At least GREV now admits he made a mistake in his claims. But you bravely carry on. Now, somehow, a philosopher of science (in physics!) equals a physicist. Why? Because, I suppose, they both have the word “physics” in them.

You say that Bruce Gordon clearly has a “professional understanding” of physics. Whatever it means to have a “professional understanding” of physics, that was not the claim. The claim was that the author, and then this Bruce Gordon, were real physicist. Turns out, not so much.

But the real kicker for me is what you find when you look up his name in the Google. Here’s my favorite, from the third link:

“A prolific writer and popular speaker, Dr. Gordon is the co-editor (with William Dembski) of The Nature of Nature, forthcoming from ISI Books. [Dembski? Really? Awesome] Modern Physics and Theistic Metaphysics is forthcoming from InterVarsity Press. Dr. Gordon received an undergraduate degree in piano performance from the Royal Conservatory of Music at the University of Toronto. He has a bachelors of science degree in applied mathematics and a master of arts in philosophy from the University of Calgary. He holds a master of arts in religion from Westminster Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in the history and philosophy of science (physics) from Northwestern University. The King’s College is a Christian college located in the Empire State Building in New York City.”

The good thing here is that I now know that the King’s College, although it sounds all Englishy and impressive (isn’t the the third of the big three, along with Oxford and Cambridge?), is a college in the Empire State building. I now have a new college whose undergraduates I can worry about.

Oh, and did I forget this?

“Dr. Gordon was most recently the Research Director at the Seattle-based Discovery Institute. Prior to that, he held several positions at Baylor, including the directorship of the Interdisciplinary Program in Science, Philosophy, and Religion at the Baylor Institute for Faith and Learning.”

Yeah, he worked at the Discovery Institute. That’s like coming from SPECTRE, if you ask me. If I was writing a book that blew the lid on physics providing positive confirmation of the Bible’s cosmology (instead of making a mockery of it), those are the perfect contributor credentials to bolster my credibility. The DI, the “institute” so concerned with advancing knowledge that they first authored The Wedge Document.

I think that PD has pitched a perfect game here. It’s a shame that the only theists willing to engage with him have been two of the least capable I’ve seen comment on this blog.

PhysicistDave said...

GREV wrote to me:
> Dave -- so I misread Mr. Gordon`s biography. I made a mistake. Wow!

No, GREV. Not, “Wow!” Just lying as we expect you to do.

I repeatedly pointed out the truth, and, instead of considering the possibility that just maybe I was right, you repeatedly responded with contempt and with lectures as to how I could better impress people.

And, yet it turns out that if anyone deserved all of your enormous contempt, it was you.

Yes, I let you string it out to see just how willing you were to stretch out the falsehoods, how eager you were to pour contempt on someone who was telling the truth.

Thanks for giving us such a wonderful show. It was worth it.

You have been making a profit as a Liar for Jesus™ for over two decades, right? Quite a gig if you have no conscience, eh? Just keep shearing the sheep and tellin’ the rubes what they want to hear!

You Christians go on and on and on about what sinners you are and how you need redemption, and, yet, when you actually engage in contemptible behavior, as you did here, not a sincere word of repentance or any sincere consideration of what it shows about your own utter lack of character.

All just a pose, all just a charade.

You are truly contemptible.

PhysicistDave said...

Just in case anyone is in doubt as to the con game our Liar for Jesus™ GREV is engaged in, here is a bit more about the fellow, Bruce L. Gordon, he was trying to present as a scientist:
> Dr. Bruce Gordon is a Senior Fellow at the Seattle-based Discovery Institute (http://www.discovery.org/p/411 )

The Discovery Institute is of course the reeking cesspool whence emanates the “Intelligent Design” con game.

Not only was GREV trying to sell a philosopher as a scientist, but a certified IDiot to boot!

BenYachov said...

Tony,

On what basis can you claim someone with a philosopher of science(physics) isn't a physicist other than that Dave said so?

Clearly Dave thinks his PhD gives him omniscient knowledge about a whole manner of subjects outside his narrow field.

Stephen Barr is a physicist(by Dave's & your arbitrary standards) and as GREV pointed out contributed to the book.

Or did you miss that part?

BTW did Dave peer review any of Gordon's works? Does Dave do any academic work these days or does he just sit home and home school his kid?

>I think that PD has pitched a perfect game here.

More mindless Rah! Rah!

>It’s a shame that the only theists willing to engage with him have been two of the least capable I’ve seen comment on this blog.

That's not sock puppet behavior on your part at all Tony now is it?

It's a shame because you are better than that. I still believe this.

BenYachov said...

From Dave's bio

"in theoretical physics from Stanford University, and I am co-patentholder on various patents in the fields of computers and communications-satellite technology."

So he does technology? He's a Technocrat with delusions of grandeur. Bid deal my Father has a Master's in Engineering.

BenYachov said...

BTW Tony & Dave,

You can make ad hominid attacks on Gordon all you like but you can't spin away Physicist Stephen Barr. His is an ID opponent and a militant one at that.

So here is a quarter for both of you to buy a clue.

This is an example of competence on your part Tony?

Seriously?

BenYachov said...

@Tony hoffman

Stephen M. Barr is a professor of Particle Physics at the Bartol Research Institute and the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Delaware. His research interests include Elementary Particle Theory, Supersymmetric Grand Unified Theories, and Cosmology. He has authored over 120 physics papers in journals such as Physical Review D and Physics Today. He is also the author of the article on Grand Unified Theories for the Encyclopedia of Physics.

He earned his Ph. D. in physics from Princeton University in 1978, and taught at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Washington, and Brookhaven National Laboratory before joining the University of Delaware in 1987. He is regular contributor to the science and religion journal First Things, and sits on the journal's editorial advisory board. Additionally, he is on the board of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars. In 2003, he published "Modern Physics and Ancient Faith" on the University of Notre Dame Press.

So he contributed to the book and endorses it.

But Tony thinks it's rational to believe a commbox "Physicist" who has never read the book and as far as we can tell hasn't published 120 peer viewed articles.

You proud of this Tony?


PS Did mention Barr is an ID opponent? Simply read FIRST THINGS for all the gory details.

PhysicistDave said...

Tony wrote:
> I think that PD has pitched a perfect game here.

Thanks, Tony.

The funny thing is that I am actually *more* sympathetic than most scientists to some of the ideas Vic, BY, GREV, etc. would like to pitch.

Maybe God does exist: I doubt it, but I am not sure. I suspect that physics as we now know it cannot fully explain the nature of consciousness. Maybe consciousness (“spirit” or whatever) can exist independent of material bodies: again, I doubt it, but I am far from certain. Maybe there will eventually turn out to be important parts of reality that cannot be explained in terms of the atomistic-reductionist-mechanistic metaphysics that has so far served science so well. I don’t know.

And while I think most philosophers are skilled but cynical verbal manipulators (see Chris Hallquist’s recent testimony based on his experience as a grad student in philosophy -- http://www.uncrediblehallq.net/2011/07/14/seduced-by-sophistication-follow-up-to-philosophy-is-dysfunctional/), there are a number of philosophers whom I respect: Colin McGinn, the late Ernest Gellner, etc.

And I am a huge admirer of C. S. Lewis and recommend his books to others (in the last few weeks, I have recommended both Mere Christianity and The Abolition of Man to folks in the real world), which is how I happened on this Website.

If these guys could communicate with any scientist, it should be me.

But, when they refuse to face up to obvious failures in the history of philosophy and the obvious successes of science, when they show contempt for the actual results of science and think it is okay to make up fake science that suits their doctrinal purposes (as Feser did), and when they lie outright and unapologetically, well, they are not going to earn any respect from me or most other scientists.

And respect does have to be earned: it is not a given.

A shame really. I think Vic’s book raises some interesting question, and I think the scientific answers to those questions are worth pursuing, though I think they lead in a different direction than Vic supposes.

But with “friends” like BY, GREV, et al. well, if I wanted to manufacture a set of enemies for Vic, I couldn’t do any better than these guys!

A shame.

All the best,

Dave

BenYachov said...

@Tony

The bottom line before you further make a fool of yourself.

Barr is clearly a more qualified physicist than Dave. Barr read the book and contributed to it & endorsed it unlike Dave.

He is a known ID opponent. Simply search Dimblinki's blog or whatever his f***ing name is blog and see.

So spare me your proDave sockpuppetry.

BenYachov said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PhysicistDave said...

The BY wrote:
>From Dave's bio
>"in theoretical physics from Stanford University, and I am co-patentholder on various patents in the fields of computers and communications-satellite technology."
>So he does technology? He's a Technocrat with delusions of grandeur. Bid deal my Father has a Master's in Engineering.

Yes, BY, I hold degrees from two universities that are always ranked in the top ten in the USNews ranking. I have done research, published papers, and earned a Ph.D. in high-energy/elementary-particle physics: I did both theoretical work on lepton phenomenology and I also did important work on experimental physics (solving the Poisson problem for a large particle detector at the PEP facility). I have also worked in applied physics, math, and electrical engineering and hold various patents in the fields of communication-satellite and computer hard-disk technology.

In short, I have proven, well-documented expertise in more than one field.

And you find that contemptible? Really?

Or maybe it is just beyond your imagination?

How many fields do you have proven expertise in, BY? Can you name even one?

What degrees do you have, BY, and from what universities? Any?

I am always amazed at how losers in life declare their massive superiority over people with proven achievements!

Ah, BY, you are just the gift that continues giving! I could not have invented a Christian as illuminating as you.

You are Christianity today.

PhysicistDave said...

GREV and BY,

It's been fun, you have proved my points beyond my wildest dreams, and I appreciate it.

You have both been measured and everyone now knows what sort of human beings you are.

I am a busy man and I have many more important things to do.

Bye.

Oh, and, yes, you are indeed both among the most contemptible human beings I have ever encountered.

BenYachov said...

But Dave,

Stephen Barr is still clearly more accomplished and qualified than you.

120 papers. I note you haven't list the number you have done.

He is a professor of Particle Physics at the Bartol Research Institute and the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Delaware. His research interests include Elementary Particle Theory, Supersymmetric Grand Unified Theories, and Cosmology. He has authored over 120 physics papers in journals such as Physical Review D and Physics Today. He is also the author of the article on Grand Unified Theories for the Encyclopedia of Physics.

It's no contest.

BTW he read the book unlike some of us and is an ID opponent.

BenYachov said...

Of course Tony you are not absolved from your irrational performance and proDave sockpuppetry.

I expect better of you next time.

BenYachov said...

@GREV

You should stop by Feser blog. There are a lot of intelligent, polite, educated, Atheist of the Non-Gnu type asking real challenging questions and getting challenging answers vs challenging rebuttals.

From an Atheist physicist named Hudak[sic] I learned that Four Dimensional models of Time are not compatible with Aristotelian Metaphysics. But it is compatible with Parmedies.

Good stuff.

BenYachov said...

Not that they don't sometimes show up here. But between Paps and Dave.....

Blue Devil Knight said...

I really like PhysicistDave's posts.

Incidentally, I analyzed in a bit of detail the arguments about Feser. First, giving the relevant quotes here.

Then evaluating them more here. My conclusion was that Feser invited the misreading, to some degree, but that Dave is pushing too hard and a bit uncharitably.

These guys (Feser and PhysicistDave) both seem to have a lot of trouble admitting when they are wrong. Both are pedantic. Only one is entertaining (PD).

Blue Devil Knight said...

Has there been a single thread where PD hasn't mentioned he has a PhD in physics from Stanford? Reminds me of this guy.

BenYachov said...

BDK! At last someone intelligent to whom it's no shame to lose an argument.


(Too brown nose? I don't give a shit it's what I really feel. Live with it)

>These guys (Feser and PhysicistDave) both seem to have a lot of trouble admitting when they are wrong.

The problem here BDK is Feser wasn't arguing with Dave. He has never engaged Dave. I doubt he knows Dave exists.

But I will need a specific example of him not being able to "admit" he is wrong.

BenYachov said...

>My conclusion was that Feser invited the misreading, to some degree,

I respectfully disagree for the following reasons. 1) He clearly stated he was giving stock examples (page 92) so the careful fair minded reader should guess he is not trying to make precise statements on the nature of the physical world. Anymore then I do when I say the "Sun came up today"(no I am not a Geocentrist).
He is trying to explain Accidental series vs Essential ones.

2) Feser can't reasonably anticipate or predict how his writings might be misread by those who are militantly hostel and have a clear agenda.

3) These charges of "bad science" come from two such readers with an hostle agenda. Ask yourself if you read these paragraphs (after having read page 1-91) would you have come up with these objections on your own? Or would you simply have learned the difference between accidental vs essential series?

There is more but I am tired.

BenYachov said...

Anyway BDK you still an Atheist Thomist?

We are getting traffic from Coyne blog and picking up two or three of those.

Atheist Thomists. My favorite Atheists along side Prolife Atheists.

Cheers!

BTW Fr Greotchel one said in a talk someone did a servay that said 10% of all Irish Atheist believed in the deity of Christ.

Irish Atheists are different from other Atheists he quipped.:-)

OTOH maybe it's the stubbornness of the Irish? We Scots are kin to the Irish BTW.

Now I am threw babbling.

GREV said...

Dave:

You really are an angry guy. Try calming down a little.

So people who share similar views endorsing a book does little to endorse the book. Try remembering that when the militant new atheists endorse each other in their next round of preaching.

The evideence discussed in the book is what I am interested in. Something you show an inability it seems too want to deal with.

I am glad you have all this expertise in your field.

So then take the parital list of examples of the work done in physics cited in the book and display your expertise for us.

And then show us I would suggest that it is not the science that drives you but your presuppositions.

And when your willing to admit to that then welcome to the real world.

Since you claim to be an admirer of CS Lewis -- "What you see and what you hear depends a great deal on where you are standing. It also depends on what sort of person you are."
— C.S. Lewis (The Magician's Nephew)

GREV said...

And to get back to the real intent of the thread -- God's dealings with us are not the real problem.

They are issues to be struggled with and pondered about and will give us seasons of long dark nights but they are not the real problem.

The real problem is our believing we can judge and talk back to God. That is where a pride and a contempt of immense proportions lies. But I don't expect a person who lives in that to see it.

GREV said...

I am not a fan of ID. Neither am I fan of the militant new atheists.

It still does not mean that I might not learn something from them.

How full of ourselves do we have to be to hold different viewpoints in such contempt?

GREV said...

Vic: A question -- whereas Physicist Dave thinks Fr. Spitzer has no right to assess the evidence from physics despite the assistance of a physicist in the production of the book. Let us open another thread and allow Physicist Dave to enlighten us and assess the evidence produced in the book that allows the theist to say that physics is finding that a Super Intelligent Creator is behind all that we see.

So Physicist Dave -- you up for that or are we beneath your consideration?

I am always up for learning something.

GREV said...

And Dave I don't hold you in contempt I just think you are a little too angry and a little to captive to your theology.

Each person is free to be.

And I will defend youyr right to your beliefs.

Blue Devil Knight said...
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Blue Devil Knight said...

Ben this topic is an example where Feser should have just said 'Yeah, I was a bit unclear.' But he was stubborn and pedantic, acting like people were just not getting it. It wasn't in response to Dave, but the same concerns. See my second link above. He could have easily defused the situation.

Blue Devil Knight said...

I don't know if I'm still a hylemorphic naturalist. But what the hell, sure. :)

One Brow said...

PhysicistDave said...
Anyone, just go to https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=10584495&postID=7269891037191878993 and do a search on “p.82” and “page 92”. You will turn up two separate verbatim quotes by me from Feser, contrary to BY’s claim.

Dave,

You fell for one of Feser's rhethorical tricks (or to be generous, oversights). I detailed what he wrote paragraph six of this post and some of the obvious effects. Dr. Feser does not actually believe simultaneity is relevant to his metaphysics, and created a small passage in his book detailing that. His regular use of the term allows him to criticize those who think he actually means "simultaneous" when he says "simultaneous" as not understanding the point, and also to give the impression that these sequences of causes are of a limited duration. Again, the very kindest interpretation is rhetorical incompetance.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Onebrow, great stuff.

Lenin said...

I'm thoroughly confused as to why PhysicistDave is getting so indignant. He's presumably a full-blown atheistic materialist who adheres to determinism.

I wonder how much moral indignation is warranted for events in a deterministic cosmos, seeing as the outcome of every event that has happened and will ever happen was and has already been determined by the causal matrix arising from the Big Bang.

How could anyone care about fixed outcomes?

On his view, human beings are biological machines that “unfold” according to the laws of physics – they are not the origins of their actions and they do not deflect the course of events, but are merely conduits through which the processes of nature operate, little parishes of a boundless causal web arising from the Big Bang and perhaps terminating in the Big Crunch. Hence a heated internet exchange might as well be an internet exchange played out by third-rate robotic machines made out of junkyard scraps. Same deal, essentially.

In this light, if I were such an atheist it would be nearly impossible for me to summon forth genuine care for any occurrence within human history, and to cultivate any sort of genuine hope for the future. Things will simply be what the Big Bang intended them to be.


So why get furious with Feser's and Spitzer's God-books when Feser and Spitzer were clearly unable to write other than they did? And BenYachov and Grev were unable to prevent themselves from responding as they did, and I was somehow unable to stop myself from writing this as a result of PhysicistDave's splendidly mellifluous indignation...


So why the unbridled fury? Why does he allow himself to be so outraged by the alleged intellectual dishonesty of theistic authors?


.
.
.

Oh wait. I remember now.

He couldn't help himself.





PhysicistDave's worldview is a complete joke.

BenYachov said...

I'm not going to fight this time. But I do strongly disagree.

>Dr. Feser does not actually believe simultaneity is relevant to his metaphysics, and created a small passage in his book detailing that.

That is you are admitting he plainly said he was explicitly talking about the metaphysical description of motion/change not literal physical movement or physics.

Something the "Science Alone as the Sole Rule of Faith" crowd cognitively can't wrap their heads around.

Feser wrote on page 92: "motion of the stone occurs only insofar as the stick is moving it, and the stick is moving it only insofar as it is being used by the hand to
do so. At every moment in which the last part of the series (viz, the motion of the stone) exists the earlier ports (the motion of the hand and of the stick) do as well."

It was clear to me at least he was giving a metaphysical description(since he took pains in his book up to that point to spell out the difference between scientific vs metaphysical descriptions) not an argument from physics.

But people like One Brow or Dave who see the real world as something that can only be legitimately described by physical science might have a cognitive bias against understanding the world in purely philosophical terms.

>Again, the very kindest interpretation is rhetorical incompetance.

We will have to disagree. The problem is cognitive bias on the part of certain readers. Thought I will not say this is done by malice.

Sort of like when BDK discussed Philo and the Bible a while back & he discovered Catholics don't believe in Sola Scriptura & thus read the Bible differently then the Evangelicals of his youth.

Or One Brow equivocating Light Absorption properties with actual color when we discussed Color as having expansive properties.

So you will forgive me if I still disagree. Thought your own mind may remain unchanged.

One Brow said...

Blue Devil Knight said...
Onebrow, great stuff.

Thank you.

If you had time, I would greatly appreciate having someone who is somewhat receptive to Aristotlean metaphysics go throught eh series and point out any misunderstanding/misconceptions in my review. Surisingly, BenYachov, et. al., have not found the time.

One Brow said...

BenYachov said...
I'm not going to fight this time. But I do strongly disagree.

I did not expect otherwise.

That is you are admitting he plainly said he was explicitly talking about the metaphysical description of motion/change not literal physical movement or physics.

He did state such as his purpose. However, "simultaneous" is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one, and its use is indeed both inaccurate physics and misleading in terms of the idea Dr. feser claims to wish to portray. So, his word choice operated against his stated purpose.

Something the "Science Alone as the Sole Rule of Faith" crowd cognitively can't wrap their heads around.

Whoever they are.

Feser wrote on page 92: "motion of the stone occurs only insofar as the stick is moving it, and the stick is moving it only insofar as it is being used by the hand to
do so. At every moment in which the last part of the series (viz, the motion of the stone) exists the earlier ports (the motion of the hand and of the stick) do as well."


True enough for "moments" (which IIRC, were originally defined as a minute-and-a-half and currently have no precise definition in terms of unit of time), but not for pico-seconds, and therefore not simultaneous.

It was clear to me at least he was giving a metaphysical description(since he took pains in his book up to that point to spell out the difference between scientific vs metaphysical descriptions) not an argument from physics.

Therefore he should not be using terms with physical meaning, like "simultaneous". I agree.

But people like One Brow or Dave who see the real world as something that can only be legitimately described by physical science

To which One Brow do you refer? I have never run across anyone else using the name, and it certainly was not I, as we have discussed in the past.

We will have to disagree.

On that I have almost no doubt.

BenYachov said...

@One Brow

>He did state such as his purpose. However, "simultaneous" is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one.

Says who? That's like claiming "motion" is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one only. But after reading Feser and other Aristotelian we know better.
That was the whole point of TLS.

Unless you can positively prove "simultaneous" is never used as a metaphysical description, but a physical one in AT philosophy then this convention of yours is merely arbitrary.

Can you say with certainty other Aristotelian Philosophers don't use "simultaneous" as a metaphysical description ever?

You confident in making that claim? Can you back it up?

But let's face it One Brow by your own admission you are not an expert in philosophy.

So there you have it. You could be wrong and I think you likely are in this case.

Forgive me but you do have this tendency to kneejerk read the world threw you physicalist empiricist world view. Sort of like the Baptist who is surprised Catholics don't formulate doctrine using Scripture Alone & can't cognitively conceive of doctrine being formed in any other way.

You need to think outside the box. Just saying.

Peace.

I want to keep this civil.

BenYachov said...

I looked at some of it.

One Brow botched the whole Train Box Car analogy.

He doesn't understand motors attached to each of the box cars would be a FIRST CAUSE just as if the box cars are being pulled by an single Engine.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Onebrow I know next 2 nothing about Aristotelian metaphysics...ben knows more than I by far...

BenYachov said...

It seems the term "simultaneous" has a specific meaning to Aristotlians.

http://www.online-literature.com/aristotle/categories/13/

So why shouldn't an AT philosopher make use of that meaning?

QUOTE"The term 'simultaneous' is primarily and most appropriately applied to those things the genesis of the one of which is simultaneous with that of the other; for in such cases neither is prior or posterior to the other. Such things are said to be simultaneous in point of time. Those things, again, are 'simultaneous' in point of nature, the being of each of which involves that of the other, while at the same time neither is the cause of the other's being. This is the case with regard to the double and the half, for these are reciprocally dependent, since, if there is a double, there is also a half, and if there is a half, there is also a double, while at the same time neither is the cause of the being of the other.

Again, those species which are distinguished one from another and opposed one to another within the same genus are said to be 'simultaneous' in nature. I mean those species which are distinguished each from each by one and the same method of division. Thus the 'winged' species is simultaneous with the 'terrestrial' and the 'water' species. These are distinguished within the same genus, and are opposed each to each, for the genus 'animal' has the 'winged', the 'terrestrial', and the 'water' species, and no one of these is prior or posterior to another; on the contrary, all such things appear to be 'simultaneous' in nature. Each of these also, the terrestrial, the winged, and the water species, can be divided again into subspecies. Those species, then, also will be 'simultaneous' point of nature, which, belonging to the same genus, are distinguished each from each by one and the same method of differentiation.

But genera are prior to species, for the sequence of their being cannot be reversed. If there is the species 'water-animal', there will be the genus 'animal', but granted the being of the genus 'animal', it does not follow necessarily that there will be the species 'water-animal'.

Those things, therefore, are said to be 'simultaneous' in nature, the being of each of which involves that of the other, while at the same time neither is in any way the cause of the other's being; those species, also, which are distinguished each from each and opposed within the same genus. Those things, moreover, are 'simultaneous' in the unqualified sense of the word which come into being at the same time."END QUOTE

Hiero5ant said...

@OneBrow

Good catch on Feser, one of the biggest reasons I almost never read his blog (aside from the vile bigotry he's been known to spout from time to time).

Reading his posts and especially the comments with their "high-fiving" character, he seems to have one signature rhetorical trick I've seen his acolytes repeat in other fora: go out of your way to adopt obscure and archaic verbiage, and then chortle when your opponents misread you in predictable and avoidable ways, giggling at how "unsophisticated" they are for not having facility with metaphysical texts developed half a millennium before the invention of the S-trap on flush toilets.

Anonymous said...

never thought i'd say this, but i agree with Lenin. spot on.

BenYachov said...

Here is a Thomistic Philosopher giving virtually the same explanation as Feser on essential vs accident causal series & uses "simultaneous" in the same manner.

"The hand, the stick, the stone."

Feser didn't make that one up. These are not his unique arguments clearly they are part of a philosophical tradition.

http://www.phc.edu/gj_6_martin_e_aquinas.php

QUOTE"Third, we should notice the distinctions between the hand-stick-stone example and its artificer-hammer counterpart. In the hand-stick-stone series, that is, the essentially ordered series, the causes and effects are simultaneous,and the relationships between causes are transitive. Letting 'C' mean 'causes' and x,y,and z be individual causes, it is the case that if xCy and yCz, then xCz. If the hand moves the stick (at time t) and the stick moves the stone (at time t), then one can properly say, in an essentially ordered series, that the hand moves the stone (at time t). On the other hand, an accidentally ordered series, such as the artificer-hammer example, is neither simultaneous nor transitive. Aquinas recognizes that the example of generation is even clearer than that of the artificer-hammer. He has in mind here the non-transitivity of generators."END QUOTE

BenYachov said...

So you will forgive me One Brow given the evidence I don't see how your claim "'simultaneous' is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one" can be factually correct.

Even before looking into it intuitively it seemed unlikely equivocal terms might not be present across disciplines.

BenYachov said...

It's like saying "A Pound" is only a unit of weight not a unit of Royal Currency.

Blue Devil Knight said...

BY how much space did Feser take clarifying that he was using 'simultaneous' in an unusual way?

BenYachov said...

>BY how much space did Feser take clarifying that he was using 'simultaneous' in an unusual way?

I don't know. Nor do I care.

How much space did Feser take clarifying that he was using 'motion' in an unusual way?

But someone with an extreme bias such as Dave or Unbeguiled no doubt would still insist "Motion" is not a metaphysical term but solely a physical one.

Much like claiming 'simultaneous' is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one only.

Obvious AT philosophers think differently.

All I know is I got it when I first read it in the context of the previous ninety something pages I read.

If others didn't well that is the way it goes.

That is what I think & why.

BenYachov said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BenYachov said...

BDK,

Granted a person with a strict scientific mindset, an extensive but exclusive familiarity with scientific terminology & no knowledge of philosophy or philosophical terminology is more vulnerable to misreading Feser here.

Accept Feser spend the first 50 or 60 pages of the book outlining the difference between scientific knowledge vs philosophical knowledge.

Also he explained Scientific explanation vs metaphysical demonstration.

On page 83-85 he give a brief polemic of scientism.

Therefore in my humble opinion if someone misunderstands Feser's use the term "simultaneous" on pages 92 and up the fault is their's IMHO.

Like I said it was clear enough for me.

BenYachov said...

I don't see how One Brow's claim "'simultaneous' is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one" can be factually correct?

Indeed it is obvious the term "simultaneous" is not exclusively a term used for physical descriptions only or descriptions of physics only.

Now One Brow may answer me by coming up with another arbitrary rule that says if we have a description of a physical event then descriptive terms should only involve physical descriptions.

The problem with that is physical events or physical sequences (i.e. hand moves stick moves stone) can be given a metaphysical description. This is done in the Philosophy of Nature all the time.

Metaphysical descriptions are not solely given to things that are immaterial, abstract or ethereal.

Physical events can also be given a metaphysical description not just a physical one.

Based on the links I gave above it is obvious the term "simultaneous" can be used and historically has been used for other than exclusively physical descriptions as One Brow implies.

So I can't agree with him and I suggest he rethink his view.

One Brow said...

BenYachov said...
@One Brow
>He did state such as his purpose. >However, "simultaneous" is not a >metaphysical description, but a >physical one.

Says who? That's like claiming "motion" is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one only.


You are correct in that my wording was poor. Since metaphysics includes physics, any physical discussion is metaphysical. It would have better expressed my sentiments to say: However, "simultaneous" is not a purely metaphysical description, but one with a direct physical meaning.

It seems the term "simultaneous" has a specific meaning to Aristotlians.

That wasn't a special meaning, it was the ordinary physical meaning extended to notions ike categories. It did not resuce the notion of the non-simultaneity of the hand-stick-stone example.

Feser didn't make that one up. These are not his unique arguments clearly they are part of a philosophical tradition.

I would never credit Dr. Feser with the ability to make up the hand-stick-stone argument, nor is that relevant. When philosophical tradition in metaphysics is at odds with physics, the metaphysics loses all grounding in reality, and becomes mere formalistic play.

But someone with an extreme bias ... Much like claiming 'simultaneous' is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one only.

How much bias does it take to add the word "only" when it does not appear in the original?

So I can't agree with him and I suggest he rethink his view.

I would think you should actually learn my view before you suggest I change it. but then again, you are BenYachov, and my view disagrees with yours, so for you that is sufficient, it seems.

Papalinton said...

Metaphysics is a specialism within philosophy. Metaphysics also deals with the process of ideation of physics.

But metaphysics has absolutely nothing to do with the supernatural or the paranormal, it has nothing to do with gods, religion, or superstition. Theology is a bastardized adjunct of Philosophy, and has a greater kinship to the study of Mythology than metaphysics. Indeed the relationship between theology and metaphysics is tenuous at best.

BenYachov said...

@One Brow

>It would have better expressed my sentiments to say: However, "simultaneous" is not a purely metaphysical description, but one with a direct physical meaning.

Again says who? Sorry but this claim of yours his still IMHO hopelessly arbitrary. Your slight revised qualification doesn’t rescue the argument as far as I can tell. Feser clearly stated he was making a metaphysical description of motion not a physical one. He clearly explained “motion” was to be understood metaphysically therefore any use of the term “simultaneous” as a descriptive should be assumed to be of that manner and not as a physical descriptive.

The term “simultaneous” need not be a purely metaphysical term anymore than a purely physical one. As long as it can have a discriptive metaphysical application it can legitimately be used in a metaphysical argument to make a metaphysical discriptive. You just conceded it can with your qualification.

Your entire argument at this point hinges on the term “simultaneous” being exclusively a term that describes physical processes. But you just implicitly conceded it need not be purely physical and even if you tried to argue that is the primary meaning I still showed how the context of it explicitly describing something metaphysical legitimizes the use of the alleged secondary meaning.

So with all due respect I am even less convinced of the validity of your argument with your gracious qualification than I was before.

Thank you BTW for your honesty & correction of your rhetorical deficiency here.

Cheers.

BenYachov said...

additional:

>How much bias does it take to add the word "only" when it does not appear in the original?

But that was clearly the implication was it not?

Because if you don't mean "simultaneous" only has a physical meaning then I don't see how your argument can be coherent at all?

Since it implies "simultaneous" can have a non-physical application.

Thus the statement ""'simultaneous' is not a metaphysical description, but a physical one" can't be turn at all.

But of course you where forced to revise that statement. It's not my fault you are not as clear in your writing as you demand of others.

I think that is a fair assessment.

Cheers again.

BenYachov said...

BTW One Brow I really don't mean this to be personal.

I sincerely believe at best your argument is ambiguous at worst incoherent.

I don't see why you should be allowed to get away with pigeon holding Feser's use of the term "simultaneous" to either exclusively or primarily have a physical descriptive application sans a metaphysical one.

BenYachov said...

>When philosophical tradition in metaphysics is at odds with physics,

Either this sounds to me like you equate physics with metaphysics or you are guilty of being imprecise again.

If the later then it would be more accurate to say some modelings of theoretical Physics are at odds with some metaphysical models.

(Example: A four dimensional theory of Time is at odds with the metaphysics of Aristotle but quite comfortable with the metaphysics of Parmenides).

But by definition Metaphysics can't strictly be "at odds" with any physics. Only contrary metaphysical models.

One Brow said...

BenYachov said...
>It would have better expressed my sentiments to say: However, "simultaneous" is not a purely metaphysical description, but one with a direct physical meaning.

Again says who?

You, among others, acknowledge that "simultaneous" hs a physical meaning. It's an odd question.

Feser clearly stated he was making a metaphysical description of motion not a physical one. He clearly explained “motion” was to be understood metaphysically therefore any use of the term “simultaneous” as a descriptive should be assumed to be of that manner and not as a physical descriptive.

You still haven't offered any metaphysical definition for simultaneous that applies to the hand-stick-stone and is different from the physical definition. So, you are claiming a difference that does not exist.

The term “simultaneous” need not be a purely metaphysical term anymore than a purely physical one. As long as it can have a discriptive metaphysical application it can legitimately be used in a metaphysical argument to make a metaphysical discriptive. You just conceded it can with your qualification.

However, you don't have a distinctive metaphysical definition, and Feser never offered one in TLS. You have an expansionn of the physical definition to cover non-physical entities, like categories, but that comes out the same for physical entities.

Your entire argument at this point hinges on the term “simultaneous” being exclusively a term that describes physical processes.

Not quite. My criticism (not actually an argument) is that "simultaneous" has a defined meaning when referring to physical processes, and Feser uses simultaneous to describe physical processes, but does not believe they are actually simultaneous.

Also, since the core of metaphysics is physics, from what I can tell, there is no such thing as a physics concept that is not in metaphysics.

But that was clearly the implication was it not?

Since the implication would account for physics being a subset of the domain of metaphysics, the implicaiton could not have included "only".

Because if you don't mean "simultaneous" only has a physical meaning then I don't see how your argument can be coherent at all?

"Simultaneous" has the same meaning when applied to physical phenomena, whether in the physical or broader metaphysical context. That is why it is coherent.

BTW One Brow I really don't mean this to be personal.

It is not personal for me. I don't know you at all.

Either this sounds to me like you equate physics with metaphysics or you are guilty of being imprecise again.

Not equate. However, the core of a sound metaphysics has to be accurate physics. Otherwise it is formally valid but has no applicability to reality.

If the later then it would be more accurate to say some modelings of theoretical Physics are at odds with some metaphysical models.

(Example: A four dimensional theory of Time is at odds with the metaphysics of Aristotle but quite comfortable with the metaphysics of Parmenides).

But by definition Metaphysics can't strictly be "at odds" with any physics. Only contrary metaphysical models.


I can accept that distinction. Then, the statement would be revised to say that if Thomistic metaphysics relies on a model counter to physics, then it can not present a sound view of reality.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Onebrow in the context of an ordered series, each element is simultaneously being supported by the chain. Take out one, and the chain collapses. Take away the stick, and the stone stops moving.It isn't meant to be a mathematically precise claim, but one that expresses the phenomenon of a chain of events in whichi event N sustains N+1. By contrast with event N+1 going on just fine without N (e.g., inelastic collision, the object goes on with the same momentum after being hit---what happens to its partner object after the collision doesn't matter).

It is innocuous, simple, and Feser could have cleared it up in ways I mentioned here.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Meant perfectly elastic collision, not inelastic.

BenYachov said...

When I get around to it I will clarify a few points in response to BDK. Thought actually we are I'd say in 99% agreement. But when I get around to it I will give my views on the 1%.

BenYachov said...

As to you One Brow I must confess I can't understand your responses.
They are either ambiguous or incoherent.

I don't think we are on the same page. Indeed I don't think we are even in the same book or library.

Plus I don't think you understand what I am saying either.

For example:

I wrote:
But by definition Metaphysics can't strictly be "at odds" with any physics. Only contrary metaphysical models.

You responded:
I can accept that distinction. Then, the statement would be revised to say that if Thomistic metaphysics relies on a model counter to physics, then it can not present a sound view of reality.END

No Thomistic metaphysics is itself a model and thus by definition cannot be counter to physics. Rival models or anti-Aristotelian models can be counter to each other but not to physics.

So you say you agree with me then assert the opposite of what I said.

Like I said we are not on the same page here.

The rest I will leave till we get on the same page.

One Brow said...

Blue Devil Knight,

Thank you for the explanation, it matches what I recall from Feser's book.

Of course, once it turn out such sequences (really, lattices) are not truly simultaneous, there is nothing to prevent from stretching out in time for as long as the universe has existed. This is why I have suspicions Feser's choice of "simultaneous" is no accident nor misstatement.

One Brow said...

BenYachov said...
As to you One Brow I must confess I can't understand your responses.
They are either ambiguous or incoherent.


I'll be happy to try to clarify them for you.

No Thomistic metaphysics is itself a model and thus by definition cannot be counter to physics. Rival models or anti-Aristotelian models can be counter to each other but not to physics.

This is just nonsense. If a metaphysical proof requires the causal connections to be arranged in chains, and in reality causal connections are ordered in lattices, the while the proof may be valid, it has no bearing on reality. A counter-to-reality initial assumption negates the usefulness of the conclusion.

BenYachov said...

One Brow,

You keep contradicting yourself.

First it's "I can accept that distinction." then it's "This is just nonsense.".

Which is it? My words are plain but clearly you don't what I am saying.

>If a metaphysical proof requires the causal connections to be arranged in chains, and in reality causal connections are ordered in lattices, the while the proof may be valid, it has no bearing on reality.

What "Reality" is is in fact the question asked by metaphysics not physics.

You really do conflate the two in spite of your claims to the contrary?

But it is a brute fact Metaphysics doesn't counter physics.

>I'll be happy to try to clarify them for you.

Well you can try but in my experience you equivocate way too much.

BenYachov said...

>the while the proof may be valid, it has no bearing on reality.

Implicit here is your belief no description of reality can be metaphysical/philosophical only scientific.

Which was why you bucked me that time on the true proposition of Color as an Expansive Property by equivocating it with the false proposition Light absorption properties of materials as expansive.

One Brow you mean well and I am sure you don't do this out of malice but you can't think outside the box. You can't think philosophically. Or communicate clearly. Or read carefully.

That is just the way it is.

Sorry buddy.

GREV said...

Ben Yachov -- "What "Reality" is is in fact the question asked by metaphysics not physics."

Maybe I am just too dense for all of this but I always thought that was the point.

And in Roy Clouser's wonderful work on the religious nature of all of our theorizing he has some great pages on how the religious views of physicists undergirded their work.

So, sorry Physicist Dave and all the rest, who claim scientists are just guided by a noble pursuit of the truth.

We are all guided by presuppositions. To believe otherwise is to be still held captive to misguided Enlightenment notions.

I am just willing to admit to mine.

One Brow said...

BenYachov said...
You keep contradicting yourself.

when you conflate two different things, it can certainly seem that ways.

First it's "I can accept that distinction." then it's "This is just nonsense.".

I accept the distinction between metaphysics as a discipline (which would be neither wrong nor right), and the metaphysical thoeries it contains (that could indivudually be wrong or right). To claim an individual metaphysical theory could never be wrong or right is nonsense.

What "Reality" is is in fact the question asked by metaphysics not physics.

Sure. However, to answer that question properly, the foundation must rest upon physics. A metaphysics built on a false physics will not reflect reality.

You really do conflate the two in spite of your claims to the contrary?

I recognize the difference between a buildings first story and it's foundation, and the effect that a bad foundation has on a building.

But it is a brute fact Metaphysics doesn't counter physics.

However, individual metaphysical theories, like classical Thomism, do.

Well you can try but in my experience you equivocate way too much.

Interesting. My experience is that I distinguish more than you.

Implicit here is your belief no description of reality can be metaphysical/philosophical only scientific.

That was inferred, not implied. Assuming I am a proponent of scientism is an easy thing to do, it keeps the categories nice and clean.

Which was why you bucked me that time on the true proposition of Color as an Expansive Property by equivocating it with the false proposition Light absorption properties of materials as expansive.

Even as a formal property, color is not expansive. But, I said I would let that discussion rest, and I will. Interesting that you feel the need to bring it up so frequently. It must hold a special significance for you. It's almost like you are very rarely able to convince anyone of anything, so the times you manage to do so on any point at all are treasures to you.

One Brow you mean well and I am sure you don't do this out of malice but you can't think outside the box. You can't think philosophically. Or communicate clearly. Or read carefully.

I give your opinions with all the respect you have earned over our conversations.

Sorry buddy.

You never need to apologize for giving me an honest opinion.

One Brow said...

GREV said...
We are all guided by presuppositions.

Agreed. Hence the need to be most skeptical of the ideas we find most comfortable.

GREV said...

In the being skeptical; what if we never come to a knowledge of what is truth?

BenYachov said...

>I accept the distinction between metaphysics as a discipline (which would be neither wrong nor right),
and the metaphysical thoeries it contains (that could indivudually be wrong or right).

I said "Metaphysics can't strictly be 'at odds' with any physics. Only contrary metaphysical models.

I never said anything about Metaphysics as a discipline vs specific metaphysical theories.

>To claim an individual metaphysical theory could never be wrong or right is nonsense.

I never even implied that. Obviously threw philosophical analysis we can conclude a specific metaphysical model might be incoherent thus false. But you can't falsify a metaphysical model with Physics.

That is a category mistake. Like saying the Andromedia Galaxy doesn't exist because you can't find it under a microscope.

This is futile. Sorry about that.

BenYachov said...

>A metaphysics built on a false physics will not reflect reality.

I am assuming the findings of modern physics modeled using the metaphysics of Aristotle. You can argue philosophically against Aristotle's metaphysics but you can make an argument from physics against his metaphysics.

That is a catagory mistake.

Wow you really think you can?

Did you read Feser at all?

BenYachov said...

>Interesting that you feel the need to bring it up so frequently.

Because I really believe at this point you are conceptionally incapable of framing any argument as anything other than a scientific one.

I really believe at this point you can't think outside the box.

Papalinton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Papalinton said...

Before anything else, Feser is first and foremost an apologist. His complete philosophical agenda is undergirded by a belief in the hallucinatory capacity of the human brain to conjure up gods, demons, virgin births, trinitarianism, and other things that go bump in the night.

How one can properly pursue the philosophical entreaty while his apron strings are firmly tied to the intellectual and mythological void of theology? It speaks only of the amazing capacity for the human mind [if not wary of its predilection to do so and to maintain a sufficient scholarly level of skepticism] to deceive itself.

Feser has contributed enormously to the Apologetical cause, but little to humanity and improving the well-being of the human condition.

Feser's academic strategy is not about discovering the truth. Rather, it is about the rear-guard action to uphold, protect and maintain the Catholic 'tradition' together with its ugliness and anti-social and anti-human polemics.

Religion supports nobody. It has to be supported ... It is a perpetual mendicant. It lives on the labors of others, and then has the arrogance to pretend that it supports the giver.

BenYachov said...

That's very interesting Paps but you need to answer the big questions.

Like how can I covert my FALLOUT:NEW VEGAS XBOX 360 save games to PC format?

That would actually be constructive on your part.

One Brow said...

GREV said...
In the being skeptical; what if we never come to a knowledge of what is truth?

Is there supposed to be a consequence to that?

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