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(Discover)   Science will never be able to replace religion because people are hard-wired to be stupid   (blogs.discovermagazine.com) divider line 90
    More: Obvious, PZ Myers, Navajo, scientific inquiry, religious symbols, Scientific Method, American Southwest, human mind, cultural identity  
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2708 clicks; posted to Geek » on 24 Aug 2012 at 4:40 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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vpb [TotalFark]
2012-08-24 02:36:02 PM
It's hard to create science in your own image.
 
2012-08-24 02:41:53 PM

vpb: It's hard to create science in your own image.


b b but... cloning.
 
2012-08-24 02:43:53 PM
hostmypicture.com
 
2012-08-24 02:59:41 PM
www.fybertech.com
 
2012-08-24 03:01:23 PM
By Keith Kloor, a freelance journalist whose stories have appeared in a range of publications, from Science to Smithsonian. Since 2004, he's been an adjunct professor of journalism at New York University.

WTF ARE YOU PEOPLE TALKING ABOUT? SCIENCE IS A WHOLE DIFFERENT DISCUSSION THAN RELIGION.

/fark you, science as atheist-raison-d'etre people. Atheists are no more responsible for science truth than wacko Jeebus bangers
 
2012-08-24 03:36:06 PM
It's not hard wired or stupid.
It's just humanity as a whole are just insecure about our place in the universe and it is easier to follow what has been told for thousands of years instead of understanding what actually makes sense.

/Did I word that correctly? I hope the grammar gods don't send me to hell
 
2012-08-24 03:42:17 PM

legion_of_doo: Atheists are no more responsible for science truth than wacko Jeebus bangers


How about denying science truth? How do the two groups compare?
 
2012-08-24 04:16:48 PM
By the way for anyone not keeping score,

PZ Myers' People's Front has officially split from the People's Front of Dawkins, which of course split from the Romans a long time ago.

tl;dr: Atheism + Feminism ⇒ Religious Holy War

Link

Atheism+: the new New Atheists

This new movement has an energy that makes it hard to ignore.

Atheism+ is a reaction against the "New Atheism" of Richard Dawkins.

Let me introduce you to Atheism+, the nascent movement that might be the most exciting thing to hit the world of unbelief since Richard Dawkins teamed up with Christopher Hitchens to tell the world that God was a Delusion and, worse than that, Not Great.

Less than a week old in its current form, Atheism+ is the brainchild of Jen McCreight, a Seattle-based biology postgrad and blogger at the secularist Freethought network. She has called for a "new wave" of atheism on that "cares about how religion affects everyone and that applies skepticism to everything, including social issues like sexism, racism, politics, poverty, and crime."

On one level, this is just the logical culmination of the huge upsurge in interest prompted by the so-called "New Atheists" and the growth over the last few years of a recognisable community or movement based around ideas of atheism, scientific scepticism and a progressive political agenda. While atheism is, by definition, no more or less than a non-belief in God, in practice it clusters with a variety of other positions, from pro-choice to campaigns against homeopathy. People who espouse "liberal atheism" as it might be called, oppose religion for political as well as philosophical reasons, just as the forces of religion seem to line up - though of course not exclusively - behind seemingly unconnected issues such as opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage and, in the US, gun-control.

Atheism+ is, at its most basic, an attempt wrap things together more formally, to create a movement that prioritises issues of equality and does so from an explicitly non-religious perspective. Some would say that such a philosophy already exists in the form of humanism. Others prefer the label Skeptic. Atheism+, however, seeks to capitalise on the sense of identity that has grown up around the word "atheism" during the past few years. One supporter of the idea, Greta Christina, celebrates the term as "a slap in the face that wakes people up."

In this early phase Atheism+ is fired by anger as much as by as idealism. And, at least initially, much of this anger is directed inward towards the world of atheism itself....
 
2012-08-24 04:16:56 PM

old_toole: It's not hard wired or stupid.
It's just humanity as a whole are just insecure about our place in the universe and it is easier to follow what has been told for thousands of years instead of understanding what actually makes sense.

/Did I word that correctly? I hope the grammar gods don't send me to hell


You said it fine. I just have no idea why you thought it would refute that it's stupid and hard wired.
 
2012-08-24 04:22:27 PM
So I am curious, and stupid, do Christians hold any special place, other than hatred, for Augustus or Pilate, who I gather are the two people apart from Jesus most responsible for Christianity?

And no, I don't believe Jews have anything other than hatred for the Pharoah, but I guess we have to be glad in some ways for his existence, right??
 
2012-08-24 04:45:16 PM
lets go hit
terrorist
tase
and *close for the bit*
they HAVE to ept.
 
2012-08-24 04:50:12 PM

MacEnvy: You said it fine. I just have no idea why you thought it would refute that it's stupid and hard wired.


OK I can go with stupid, I was just trying to be nice, but I don't see "hard wired" cause we seem to have the capability to decide what makes sense. (at least most of us)
 
2012-08-24 04:53:10 PM
I don't remember where, but I read once that religion is likely a byproduct of our brain's use of symbolism. If that's what it is I don't see how we could grow out of it, it is built into us.
 
2012-08-24 04:54:38 PM
Time to stuff the Straw Vulcans.
 
2012-08-24 04:56:28 PM

Jon iz teh kewl: lets go hit
terrorist
tase
and *close for the bit*
they HAVE to ept.


twice? the f*ck?
 
2012-08-24 05:00:45 PM
LOL we gonna 3d print a space elevator and sex up the aliens????
 
2012-08-24 05:05:12 PM
FTFA: The column, by Arizona State University's Daniel Sarewitz, suggests that rational explanation of the universe's existence, as advanced recently by discovery of the Higgs boson, can't match the feelings evoked by spectacular religious symbolism, such as that found in Cambodia's ancient Hindu temples, which Sarewitz explored this summer.

I disagree.

I find a lot of religious art and architecture very impressive. Much of it is wonderfully creative and expressive and pure joy to behold.

But, for me at least, knowledge about the intricacies of the universe and the sublimity of the laws of nature are so much more breathtaking than anything religion has ever inspired.
 
2012-08-24 05:06:09 PM

Fano: Time to stuff the Straw Vulcans.


Rock out with your Spock out.
 
2012-08-24 05:11:15 PM
It doesn't, but with hilarious results. Science and technology are the things people like to deny having while using them as a go to for everything.

Examples include:
- Using the latest fertility technology and thanking God for getting pregnant
- Arguments about quantum mechanics don't exist while using the internet as a medium for this discussion. Bonus: On a smart phone.
- Those evil biologists who don't know anything, except for every time you go to the doctor.

I'm sure you can think of many more.
 
2012-08-24 05:14:42 PM

MaxxLarge: [hostmypicture.com image 600x399]


I am going to use that. I'm going to use the hell out of it.
 
2012-08-24 05:16:06 PM
No one ever promised that 'knowing' would somehow make someone feel better about themselves.
 
2012-08-24 05:20:36 PM
If the human mind is hardwired for anything, it is hardwired to define new things by comparing them to known things (the same as computerized artificial intelligence). Prior to of having the technology needed to delve into the big questions about life and death and the physical nature of existence, humans applied what they were familiar with to devise an anthropomorphic deity to give an answer to the unanswerable.

Imagine what mankind might have developed like if we had always believed we are only here as a result of physics and entropy and our consciousnesses only exists with our mortal body; better or worse I have no clue.
 
2012-08-24 05:21:36 PM

Quantum Apostrophe: LOL we gonna 3d print a space elevator and sex up the aliens????


Get a farking hobby.
 
2012-08-24 05:21:46 PM
Religion isn't stupid. It's needy. "Emotional salve" is a good term. It's been abundantly shown through studies that people with an actual, strong religious faith live longer, happier, healthier lives. Imagine what an awesome feeling it must be to actually believe that there is an afterlife, and some super duper skywizard is deeply interested in YOU, and cares about YOU.

Reality is a little tough to take. You're born, you live, you die. The end of you. Everything you are. Your mind, your conscieousness, everything ends. In a universe that doesn't care about you, and subjects you to totally random events. You ultimately return to the oblivion from whence you came.

There isn't one little bit of ultimate meaning or purpose to your life. Like a ripple in the sea of time, you rise up out of the background noise, for an eyeblink of time you have shape and amplitude, then you sink back down into the background noise.

Kinda depressing, actually.

So, if you're willing to BELIEVE, you get a longer happier life, and you aren't dissapointed when you die, because your mind ends, and you never get to know you were wrong, so you're not humiliated.

Kinda a sweet deal, if you can manage to BELIEVE.

I can't

But I am somewhat envious of those who do. Their quality of life is better.
 
2012-08-24 05:21:48 PM

Cinaed: No one ever promised that 'knowing' would somehow make someone feel better about themselves.


Often, knowing has the opposite effect, but to hell with the alternative.
 
2012-08-24 05:23:37 PM
"Real stupidity beats artificial intelligence every time."
― Terry Pratchett
 
2012-08-24 05:31:49 PM

old_toole: It's not hard wired or stupid.


Actually, it might be.

Personally, I would classify the outright objection of science more as illogical than stupid. People can get really wrapped up in their own [religious] worldviews. The mind can do weird things to protect itself from things falling apart, even if that leads to irrational logic.

The interesting question to ask is: if there are genes that lead to a greater incidence of religious acceptance, and if people who are deeply religious continue to have larger families than the non-religious, will religion and spirituality become even more entrenched in our society as it spreads further through the gene pool?
 
2012-08-24 05:32:11 PM
I'm so tempted to change my major into neurology just to see if there's some way I can modify the brain to stop short circuiting to the emotional centers just to arrive at a conclusion or a decision.
 
2012-08-24 05:32:15 PM

Stranded On The Planet Dumbass: If the human mind is hardwired for anything, it is hardwired to define new things by comparing them to known things (the same as computerized artificial intelligence). Prior to of having the technology needed to delve into the big questions about life and death and the physical nature of existence, humans applied what they were familiar with to devise an anthropomorphic deity to give an answer to the unanswerable.

Imagine what mankind might have developed like if we had always believed we are only here as a result of physics and entropy and our consciousnesses only exists with our mortal body; better or worse I have no clue.


organized religion, whether you agree with the idea or not, has a civilizing influence on people. Without religion, we may have killed all of us, not just half of us.
 
2012-08-24 05:37:41 PM
do they pray that everyone else gets their message?
 
2012-08-24 05:38:30 PM
Science and scientific thinking is an unnatural thing for humans. Basically everybody is bad at science, even scientists. Scientists are the just the ones who are too stubborn to give up on it.
 
2012-08-24 05:44:20 PM
frkking bigots
 
2012-08-24 05:51:12 PM

MaxxLarge: [hostmypicture.com image 600x399]


This.
 
2012-08-24 05:55:55 PM

CrispFlows: I'm so tempted to change my major into neurology just to see if there's some way I can modify the brain to stop short circuiting to the emotional centers just to arrive at a conclusion or a decision.


I would support this research.

Not because I care about what humanity or a person thinks the universe came from or what will happen when they die. Those don't have anything to do with the price of tea in China, generally.

But to be able to have logical and honest discussions about relevant things like healthcare, economy, and laws without people knee-jerking to a default conclusion because they "feel" something. That would be great!

Once we've got the day-to-day stuff taken care of, then we can go back to arguing about the origins of the universe.
 
2012-08-24 05:58:42 PM
But a response that indicts all religion as a stain on humanity is equally absolutist. It is also inconsistent with the spirit of science.

i224.photobucket.com
 
2012-08-24 06:02:15 PM
In other news, apples will never be able to replace oranges.

Your premise is bad, and you should feel bad.
 
2012-08-24 06:02:16 PM

DarkLancelot: I don't remember where, but I read once that religion is likely a byproduct of our brain's use of symbolism. If that's what it is I don't see how we could grow out of it, it is built into us.



I can see that, but following a religion is different than, say, reading a fictional book and having it change your life in some way.
 
2012-08-24 06:09:16 PM
I have faith in science and I don't believe in God. I don't care if you do or not, as long as you don't preach to me. I don't need a movement to keep me going.

Is that good enough for everyone?
 
2012-08-24 06:09:24 PM
Well DUH!
 
2012-08-24 06:13:22 PM
Ummm... out of curiosity, what standard of intelligence are you using that makes humans stupid?

If you know somebody smarter than a human, you REALLY ought to tell someone.
 
2012-08-24 06:13:30 PM

mark12A: Religion isn't stupid. It's needy. "Emotional salve" is a good term. It's been abundantly shown through studies that people with an actual, strong religious faith live longer, happier, healthier lives. Imagine what an awesome feeling it must be to actually believe that there is an afterlife, and some super duper skywizard is deeply interested in YOU, and cares about YOU.

Reality is a little tough to take. You're born, you live, you die. The end of you. Everything you are. Your mind, your conscieousness, everything ends. In a universe that doesn't care about you, and subjects you to totally random events. You ultimately return to the oblivion from whence you came.

There isn't one little bit of ultimate meaning or purpose to your life. Like a ripple in the sea of time, you rise up out of the background noise, for an eyeblink of time you have shape and amplitude, then you sink back down into the background noise.

Kinda depressing, actually.

So, if you're willing to BELIEVE, you get a longer happier life, and you aren't dissapointed when you die, because your mind ends, and you never get to know you were wrong, so you're not humiliated.

Kinda a sweet deal, if you can manage to BELIEVE.

I can't

But I am somewhat envious of those who do. Their quality of life is better.


This. %100. I have been trying to find the words to convey this whole thing exactly as you have. So don't mind if I steal it. And welcome to my favorites.
 
2012-08-24 06:19:27 PM
Science does not seek to replace religion. An individual may seek to, but only religion can replace religion, because it's about the structure more than anything, so what you'll find is most people who challenge religion do not wish to replace it with anything, rather to tear down that facet of our lives that is so filled with a propensity toward violence, hatred and dogma, and just let people get on with their lives, free of the overbearing evil influence that religion exudes.
 
2012-08-24 06:22:16 PM

lewismarktwo: Quantum Apostrophe: LOL we gonna 3d print a space elevator and sex up the aliens????

Get a farking hobby.


LOL 3d printing space elevator now!

C U @ Mars condo tonite!? Mars beers 4 all!

tortilla burger: Science and scientific thinking is an unnatural thing for humans. Basically everybody is bad at science, even scientists. Scientists are the just the ones who are too stubborn to give up on it.


That's pretty much it. We're just animals. Go by feel. The amazing world you see around us is the result of a few people being smart and a shiatload of oil to power all of the stuff.

The rest of the people, the realtors, lawyers, bankers, bureaucrats and office drones would act the same 3000 years ago.
 
2012-08-24 06:26:33 PM

DarkLancelot: I don't remember where, but I read once that religion is likely a byproduct of our brain's use of symbolism. If that's what it is I don't see how we could grow out of it, it is built into us.


If only there was some mechanism by which detrimental characteristics might become less frequent in a population over a long period of time.

/Just kidding
//Dumb people reproduce faster
 
2012-08-24 06:37:20 PM

lewismarktwo: Quantum Apostrophe: LOL we gonna 3d print a space elevator and sex up the aliens????

Get a farking hobby.


He has one. Unfortunately, it's threadshiatting.
 
2012-08-24 06:56:39 PM
I proposed something along these lines in a thread yesterday. In taking an agnostic position against a staunch atheist, I and several others explained that the absence of proof of the existence of a deity does not, in and of itself disprove a deity. (More detail, symbolic logic equation, analogies, inter alia, but that was the crux of position). He tacitly acklowledged what we were saying, but then opined that the existence diety is a more extraordinary claim than the absence of one and requires the bigger leap of faith, thus requiring greater evidence.

From a logic standpoint, I found no justification for either possibility to enjoy a default position of "fact until proven otherwise". But I went further to suggest that, while remaining agnostic as to the actual existence or absence of a deity, one could legitimately argue that the greater leap of faith for the human mind is assuming the absence of deity, rather than assuming the existence of one.

What took less convincing? That the entirety of the universe, its myriad particles, all manner of physics, the development of life on Earth, inter alia, all came about by the will of an omnipotent, omnicient deity; or that the universe's infinitely dense core before the big bang was eternally present until the big bang all by chance on its own, in essence: "just because".

The fact that nearly all cultures around the world had creation myths centering on the will of omnipotent, omniscient, divine beings demonstrates that it is human nature to more easily assume one or more gods' intervention rather than "everything simply exists and its matter & energy always existed on its own". Were it easier for humans to believe in the absence of gods without evidence than it is to believe in the presence of gods without evidence, then belief in some sort of omnipotent gods would not have been the norm since the sentience of man as it has.

Man is apparently hardwired to assume an omnipotent deity. To a small child, the parents are seemingly god-like. They can walk, communicate, they are powerful, the mother creates milk out of nothing, they know everything, they are giants, they navigate identical clamorous streets with ease, they can lift the child high into the air, disregarding gravity, they exercise absolute authority of will. As we get older, it would seem (again, going by the evidence of myriad cultures across the globe) that we retain a prejudice toward belief in an omnipotent caretaker/punisher.

To be clear, this does not mean that there is a god or many gods, or demigods, or whatever. Simply that it may be that the smaller leap of faith for the human mind is to believe in supernatural beings.
 
2012-08-24 07:07:07 PM
A journalism poofessor, using phillosophy to bag science in favor of religion on the Internet? Just peachy!
 
2012-08-24 07:07:10 PM
Science damn you!
 
2012-08-24 07:19:59 PM
got to love the hatred of FARK. might be time to start boycotting those companies who advertise on fark due to their hatred of Christians.
 
2012-08-24 07:46:02 PM
The problem is that there is a scientific basis for the existence of religion.
 
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