1. Illinois
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    01 Nov '09 17:491 edit
    (1) If naturalism is true, some evolutionary doctrine must also be true and our evolutionary history must be accounted for in terms of only random mutation and natural selection.

    (2) The probability of our being reliable cognitive agents given these origins is low or, at best, inscrutable. But it cannot reasonably be thought to be high.

    (3) Consequently, the naturalist cannot reasonably hold to the belief that they are reliable cognitive agents.

    (4) And since the reliability of their cognitive apparatus has been called into such grave question, naturalists are rationally bound to dismiss any belief accepted on the basis of trust in that apparatus.

    (5) Specifically, to the extent that the naturalist is rational, they will give up their belief in naturalism.
  2. Joined
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    01 Nov '09 18:04
    Originally posted by epiphinehas
    (1) If naturalism is true, some evolutionary doctrine must also be true and our evolutionary history must be accounted for in terms of only random mutation and natural selection.

    (2) The probability of our being reliable cognitive agents given these origins is low or, at best, inscrutable. But it cannot reasonably be thought to be high.

    (3) Consequ ...[text shortened]... ly, to the extent that the naturalist is rational, they will give up their belief in naturalism.
    Good one.

    Hopefully you are no more sincere than 667joe in the "God Paradox" thread.
  3. Illinois
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    01 Nov '09 18:12
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Good one.

    Hopefully you are no more sincere than 667joe in the "God Paradox" thread.
    Hopefully you are no more sincere than 667joe in the "God Paradox" thread.

    Why, exactly?
  4. Joined
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    01 Nov '09 18:56
    Originally posted by epiphinehas
    [b]Hopefully you are no more sincere than 667joe in the "God Paradox" thread.

    Why, exactly?[/b]
    Well, for one your "probability" argument is flawed.

    It's akin to the following:

    1) The probability of winning the lottery is extremely low.

    2) Therefore, anyone who believes they have won the lottery must be insane.

    The fact is that an actual lottery winner is not insane regardless of how low the odds.

    Similarly actual "cognitive agents" produced through evolution are not "[un]reliable cognitive agents" regardless of how low the odds.
  5. Illinois
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    01 Nov '09 19:15
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Well, for one your "probability" argument is flawed.

    It's akin to the following:

    1) The probability of winning the lottery is extremely low.

    2) Therefore, anyone who believes they have won the lottery must be insane.

    The fact is that an actual lottery winner is not insane regardless of how low the odds.

    Similarly actual "cognitive agents" p ...[text shortened]... through evolution are not "[un]reliable cognitive agents" regardless of how low the odds.
    It's akin to the following:

    1) The probability of winning the lottery is extremely low.

    2) Therefore, anyone who believes they have won the lottery must be insane.


    This doesn't come close to addressing the argument against naturalism.

    Similarly actual "cognitive agents" produced through evolution are not "[un]reliable cognitive agents" regardless of how low the odds.

    Again, this doesn't come close to addressing the argument against naturalism.
  6. Joined
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    01 Nov '09 20:08
    Originally posted by epiphinehas
    [b]It's akin to the following:

    1) The probability of winning the lottery is extremely low.

    2) Therefore, anyone who believes they have won the lottery must be insane.


    This doesn't come close to addressing the argument against naturalism.

    Similarly actual "cognitive agents" produced through evolution are not "[un]reliable cognitive agen ...[text shortened]... dds.

    Again, this doesn't come close to addressing the argument against naturalism.[/b]
    Hmmm, seems like you've gone into "denial mode".

    I suppose I could try several different tacks, but I can't say as I like the chances of hitting upon something that could draw someone capable of making such a flawed argument into the world of the rational.
  7. Territories Unknown
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    01 Nov '09 20:23
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Well, for one your "probability" argument is flawed.

    It's akin to the following:

    1) The probability of winning the lottery is extremely low.

    2) Therefore, anyone who believes they have won the lottery must be insane.

    The fact is that an actual lottery winner is not insane regardless of how low the odds.

    Similarly actual "cognitive agents" p ...[text shortened]... through evolution are not "[un]reliable cognitive agents" regardless of how low the odds.
    The only problem with your example is that the numbers related to the odds of winning the lottery are quantifiable. The numbers related to evolution are not--- with doesn't even speak to origins, as lacking any credible model, no numbers have been put to its odds.
  8. Standard memberSwissGambit
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    01 Nov '09 20:39
    Originally posted by epiphinehas
    (1) If naturalism is true, some evolutionary doctrine must also be true and our evolutionary history must be accounted for in terms of only random mutation and natural selection.

    (2) The probability of our being reliable cognitive agents given these origins is low or, at best, inscrutable. But it cannot reasonably be thought to be high.

    (3) Consequ ...[text shortened]... ly, to the extent that the naturalist is rational, they will give up their belief in naturalism.
    I reject premise 2). I disagree that 'it cannot reasonably thought to be high'. There are lots of other galaxies, which may contain other solar systems. All of these are given eons of time - years of chances at evolving intelligent life. For all we know, there may be scores of other galaxies containing intelligent life of some sort.
  9. Illinois
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    01 Nov '09 21:01
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Hmmm, seems like you've gone into "denial mode".

    I suppose I could try several different tacks, but I can't say as I like the chances of hitting upon something that could draw someone capable of making such a flawed argument into the world of the rational.
    1) The probability of winning the lottery is extremely low.

    2) Therefore, anyone who believes they have won the lottery must be insane.


    The reason your analogy doesn't address the evolutionary argument against naturalism is because your analogy doesn't address cognitive reliability. The probability of winning the lottery has nothing to do with anyone's belief that they have won the lottery. Whereas, random mutation and natural selection have a direct connection to our reliability as cognitive agents. What you have done is misrepresent the original argument in order to disparage it (the Red Herring fallacy).
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    01 Nov '09 21:11
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Good one.

    Hopefully you are no more sincere than 667joe in the "God Paradox" thread.
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Good one.
    Not that it is original. I think epi has been reading a certain apologist. I think the flaw is in 2), if we assume that reality is what you bump into when you get stuff wrong, then evolution is likely to give you cognitive apparatus which stops you bumping into stuff. Now given the diversity of stuff and ways you can bump into it, the efficient way to avoid bumps is generally accurate cognitive apparatus rather than apparatus that gives consistently false results that just happen to avoid trouble.
  11. Joined
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    01 Nov '09 22:041 edit
    Originally posted by epiphinehas
    [b]1) The probability of winning the lottery is extremely low.

    2) Therefore, anyone who believes they have won the lottery must be insane.


    The reason your analogy doesn't address the evolutionary argument against naturalism is because your analogy doesn't address cognitive reliability. The probability of winning the lottery has nothing to do one is misrepresent the original argument in order to disparage it (the Red Herring fallacy).[/b]
    Well, it seems you missed the germane point of the post:
    The fact is that an actual lottery winner is not insane regardless of how low the odds.

    Similarly actual "cognitive agents" produced through evolution are not "[un]reliable cognitive agents" regardless of how low the odds.


    Note the word "actual". Analogies are only meant to go so far. The lottery example was only to illustrate that it is illogical to assign attributes to individual members of a group based on probabilities for that group even if the probabilities are low. Perhaps another example will help. The probability of an individual being an albino is extremely low. An actual albino is still an albino regardless of how long the odds are for all of humankind. To say that the albino isn't an albino because the probability was low is ridiculous.

    Now either a planet has "reliable cognitive agents" or it hasn't. There seems to be more than sufficient evidence to believe that Earth has. Whatever the odds were against it, the Earth is a planet that has.

    Hope this helps.
  12. Illinois
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    01 Nov '09 22:12
    Originally posted by Lord Shark
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    [b]Good one.

    Not that it is original. I think epi has been reading a certain apologist. I think the flaw is in 2), if we assume that reality is what you bump into when you get stuff wrong, then evolution is likely to give you cognitive apparatus which stops you bumping into stuff. Now given the diversity of stu ...[text shortened]... r than apparatus that gives consistently false results that just happen to avoid trouble.[/b]
    Not that it is original. I think epi has been reading a certain apologist.

    Plantinga, to be more precise.

    I think the flaw is in 2), if we assume that reality is what you bump into when you get stuff wrong, then evolution is likely to give you cognitive apparatus which stops you bumping into stuff. Now given the diversity of stuff and ways you can bump into it, the efficient way to avoid bumps is generally accurate cognitive apparatus rather than apparatus that gives consistently false results that just happen to avoid trouble.

    Isn't it possible that a false belief might also generate a similar adaptive behavior as a true belief? How certain are you that our cognitive apparatus isn't the result of many successfully adaptive behaviors based on false beliefs?
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    01 Nov '09 22:17
    Originally posted by Lord Shark
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    [b]Good one.

    Not that it is original. I think epi has been reading a certain apologist. I think the flaw is in 2), if we assume that reality is what you bump into when you get stuff wrong, then evolution is likely to give you cognitive apparatus which stops you bumping into stuff. Now given the diversity of stu ...[text shortened]... r than apparatus that gives consistently false results that just happen to avoid trouble.[/b]
    Uh, that was "Good one" as in "Good joke".
  14. Joined
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    01 Nov '09 22:19
    Plantinga, to be more precise.
    We already know :-)
    Isn't it possible that a false belief might also generate a similar adaptive behavior as a true belief? How certain are you that our cognitive apparatus isn't the result of many successfully adaptive behaviors based on false beliefs?
    The issue is not certainty, it is cumulative probability. Plantinga might talk of isolated incidents with tigers, but his account becomes much less plausible when you consider a general cognitive mechanism faced with diverse challenges. Had you thought about that at all or did you just swallow without asking too many questions?
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    01 Nov '09 22:20
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Uh, that was "Good one" as in "Good joke".
    But not an original one. Maybe it's the way he tell 'em.
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