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John Leonard

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The Faith of Sam Harris
« on: April 20, 2011, 06:17:23 pm »

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homunculus

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2013, 02:04:11 pm »
All of science rests on assumptions, and I've noticed too that people require their opposing views to rest on less assumptions than their own views do, and that is simply not fair. For example, certain people require a greater degree of evidence for evolution than they do for miracles, or any other science. I'm aware of science having to rest on assumptions, yet we have nuclear power and computers. This is not the same as faith if there is a clear path from observation to technology as in science. Science is then validated by producing results. How is religion even comparable?

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ontologicalme

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2013, 07:04:48 am »
All of science rests on assumptions, and I've noticed too that people require their opposing views to rest on less assumptions than their own views do, and that is simply not fair. For example, certain people require a greater degree of evidence for evolution than they do for miracles, or any other science. I'm aware of science having to rest on assumptions, yet we have nuclear power and computers. This is not the same as faith if there is a clear path from observation to technology as in science. Science is then validated by producing results. How is religion even comparable?

Well yes, that is the whole point, if at the end we all need to make basic assumptions to go on with our lives, then we should not be pointing fingers to others, for their basic assumptions. 

On your point about science producing nuclear power and computers and not being on equal footing with faith (I am only addressing faith and belief in a transcendent being rather than religion), that is sort of an arbitrary point of view, for several reasons, first our most important and successful physical models of the world contradict themselves, which hints at us, of them not really being anything more than models, and not a real description of reality, that they work is more of a puzzle than a reaffirmation of a real knowledge of the world, in some sense at least.  Second saying that faith has not produced results is a great understatement even for a non believer, one only needs to look at history and the millions of testimonies of people who state how faith has changed their lives for better, or were you expecting faith to produce nuclear bombs? to each its own.

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False Entity

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2013, 08:03:44 pm »
All of science rests on assumptions, and I've noticed too that people require their opposing views to rest on less assumptions than their own views do, and that is simply not fair. For example, certain people require a greater degree of evidence for evolution than they do for miracles, or any other science. I'm aware of science having to rest on assumptions, yet we have nuclear power and computers. This is not the same as faith if there is a clear path from observation to technology as in science. Science is then validated by producing results. How is religion even comparable?

You're basically saying that because science seems to work, we should only trust in science.

And also that since faith can't produce nuclear power and computers, we should not utilize it.
It seems that you're not interested in the truth, but only interested in what "works" in the here and now.

And about faith not working.. scientists have done studies on those who pray/meditate, and on those who are aware that they are being prayed for. They realized that there are huge psychological benefits that are the outcome of one being spiritual. Better health, better relationships, etc. I mean, even if spirituality is meaningless, it still has benefits.

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Lothars Sohn

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2013, 05:54:47 am »
Sam Harris's faith is that we are biological robots, but we are responsible for our actions and an objective morality exists.

Or do I kind of misrepresent his views?


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"The whole modernist worldview stems from the illusion that the so-called laws of nature are explanations of the phenomena of nature."
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peanutaxis

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2013, 09:18:25 am »
All of science rests on assumptions

Nonsense. Science has discovered those assumptions. You are the equivalent of a person who runs into the middle of a mammoth hunt, stops everybody from chasing the mammoths to DEMAND that they CAN'T continue the hunt until they accept that their hunting is COMPLETELY dependent on the laws of physics! (Or more accurately, the person who runs into the hospital and demands that a person be blood-let.)
The laws of physics were discovered from activities like the mammoth hunt. Knowledge is an a posteriori process. We do what works and we let THAT inform 'philosophy'. What the hell else would we use? That which doesn't work!?
Similarly today, people bitch about how science is dependent upon assumptions, but refuse to accept that what works (science) should inform our assumptions.

Yes, science may rest upon assumptions like mammoth hunting rests on physics. But the only way to discover those assumptions is to look at what that which works (science) tells us. And the more we do what works, the less room there is for a purported god.

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False Entity

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2013, 01:43:58 pm »
Are you asserting that philosophy is useless and doesn't work whatsoever?

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peanutaxis

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2013, 12:55:41 am »
Are you asserting that philosophy is useless and doesn't work whatsoever?

I don't think so. We have kind of split things up into sections like philosophy and science but in reality there is only one Pursuit of Knowledge.

And it's kind of sensible that if we find something that works, that it should be declared true. This sounds obvious but people didn't always believe it. They preferred treating 'Humors' in the human body rather than looking at the body-count-evidence, or doing rain dances without even evaluating whether they work. So the great step forward has been to match what works with what we believe - broadly, science.
And ever since then the sub-branch of knowledge that is philosophy has become more and more useless by comparison to science, as science has just exploded.

Personally I think that compared to science, philosophy is virtually useless. Not through it's own fault but simply by being eclipsed by the huge success of science. Also I think that, just as there was great resistance to empirical methods informing our knowledge in the past - like medicine - there is still great resistance to science informing philosophy today.
Ultimately, though, that resistance will crumble. What works will win out.

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Ove Karlsen

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2015, 04:31:19 am »
Sam Harris faith: Drugs and the meaning of life, including an incident at "the mountain of shame".

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ElijahTay

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Re: The Faith of Sam Harris
« Reply #9 on: September 20, 2019, 07:06:09 pm »
Sam Harris's faith is that we are biological robots, but we are responsible for our actions and an objective morality exists.

Or do I kind of misrepresent his views?


Lovely greetings from Germany.
Liebe Grüsse aus Deutschland.


Lothars Sohn - Lothar's son
http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com

I think that was Craig's point.

Craig was not saying that the scientific method is equivalent to blind faith.