Aliens and evolution

Aliens and evolution

There are 6310 comments on the Washington Times story from Jun 19, 2012, titled Aliens and evolution. In it, Washington Times reports that:

DENTON, Texas, June 19, 2012 - Aliens are ingrained in our cultural psyche. They abound in books, movies, radio, and a thousand theories about the extra-terrestrial, little green men, UFO sightings, abductions, Area 51, and Roswell.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Washington Times.

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1740 Aug 23, 2012
nanoanomaly wrote:
Equations don't always have answers. Sometimes they're like Play-Doh, very pliable, with cracks.
And edible!

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1741 Aug 23, 2012
-Skeptic- wrote:
<quoted text>
You're a liar. You didn't look up the burden of proof and blindly make the assumption that "god is possible" with not a shred of evidence to back it up.
Instead of backing up your assertion, you decide to invent lies about me - exactly like Nuggin did.
You clowns are finished here.
Skeptic, the thread has moved on from your lame posts. You shouldn't keep trying to drag us back into issues which have been settled.

Additionally, this whole "burden of proof" thing has failed you. I have SPECIFICALLY asked you to explain burden of proof to the thread to demonstrate how you can know something is impossible. I've ask you no less than 8x.

Repeating that I haven't looked it up doesn't answer that question. It just leads everyone to believe that you don't know the answer.

So, let's try for the 9th time.

No one here understands what you mean by "burden of proof" in regards to a statement like "X is possible". Possible is a default position. EVERYTHING is possible until proven otherwise.

You seem to be under the impression that the opposite is true - that everything is IMPOSSIBLE until proven otherwise.

Why?

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1742 Aug 23, 2012
Lil Ticked wrote:
FINISHED!
lol
I think he meant "Finnish" because of all the talk about Thor and stuff.

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1743 Aug 23, 2012
Aerobatty wrote:
<quoted text>
Kings and celebrities exist. Regardless of whether I believe in them or not.
If no one believes in a king, is that person a king?
If no one believes in a celebrity, is that person a celebrity?

Yes, the PERSON exists, but the TITLE requires belief.

Pharaohs were REAL PEOPLE, their TITLE of "god" is ascribed to them by the faith of others.
Pharaohs were not gods, no matter who thought they were.
You would have to radically redefine the word "god" to fit your twisted concept.
No, I'm actually using the dictionary definition of the word. In fact, I'm using the three definitions from the dictionary, all three of which fit Pharaohs.

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1744 Aug 23, 2012
Aerobatty wrote:
<quoted text>
The hundreds of millions of followers are deluded.
Much like you are.
See, this is where you don't grasp the concept.

They can be deluded about the abilities of the god. They can not be deluded about the rank of god. Their belief is what grants the rank.

It's perfectly fine for you to say, "People are deluded if they think Jesus could walk on water."

It's much less reasonable for you to say, "People are deluded if they think that Jesus is the main character in the story of Christianity."

Millions of people think that Harry Potter is a wizard. It doesn't matter that he's not a real person. It also doesn't matter than "wizards" aren't real either.

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1745 Aug 23, 2012
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
I never knew that. I always saw those bumper stickers as being rather agressive.
I bought one of those bumper stickers specifically because they were aggressive. I was driving through Tx in a little red car with Conn plates. First gas station, got a tx bumper sticker and slapped it on the car. Didn't get pulled over once.

Cause and effect? Dunno. Didn't want to run the control experiment and end up shot

“ecrasez l'infame”

Since: May 08

Atlanta, Georgia

#1746 Aug 23, 2012
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
...
No one here understands what you mean by "burden of proof" in regards to a statement like "X is possible". Possible is a default position. EVERYTHING is possible until proven otherwise.
You seem to be under the impression that the opposite is true - that everything is IMPOSSIBLE until proven otherwise.
Why?
Okay, I really don't want to get into this Skeptic thing, really.

But it seems to me there is an interesting question here --

Does the statement "X is possible" have any foundation without first defining what is meant by "X"?

I agree that everything that is possible must be considered possible until proven otherwise. But does this also mean that even things that are impossible must be considered possible until proven otherwise?

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1747 Aug 23, 2012
Hidingfromyou wrote:
<quoted text>
What you are saying here is that any culture can define "god" and label someone that, no matter whether that someone cannot do as the label is defined.
Pharaohs could not produce miracles of any kind. Not a single one.
Did the Egyptian culture require that they could in order to label them a god? I don't think so. At least, I don't know of any magical power that a Pharaoh needed to demonstrate.

Same thing with Pele. I don't think the Hawaiians thought Pele could do any miracles, or anything supernatural at all. They just really really really really really didn't want Pele to do the one natural trick and blow the entire island to smithereens.
However, that did not stop people from that culture from experiencing miracles from Pharaohs. Now, you can call their experience whatever you want - misinterpretation of events, hallucination, whatever, but they most certainly experienced miracles from their God-king, even though that God-king was as human as you or I.
I completely agree that the Pharaohs were no more or less human than we were. You are totally on the right track.
In fact, the elite of the Egyptians knew their God-king to be human - they murdered some of them after all.
Sure. Jesus got murdered too.
But it detracts from "are there deities" in the Western sense. Basically, you've answered it with "yes, as long as people define some existent phenomena (people) as deities, they exist."
Yes. The problem I'm pointing out is that people are assuming that the "Western sense" is the default position or the right position. It's not.

This whole topic got started because Skippy was complaining that people weren't being precise enough with their use of the correct definitions. He was constantly (and still is!) saying "look it up".

Well, I did. And since Skippy had exclusively used "god" not "God", I went with the definition for the word he was actually using.

He could have, at any point, stopped and said "I made a mistake, I meant God, the central figure in the Jewish religion".

But that would require Skippy to admit a mistake. Extremely unlikely.

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1748 Aug 23, 2012
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
The term 'god' is not a social position like 'president' or 'mayor'. It implies that certain powers exist that the Pharaohs did not have. So, in spite of the beliefs of their followers, they were not gods. Yes, millions of people were wrong. It happens.
What specific powers are required of a god? Can you give me a list of gods which actually have these powers and a list of 'false gods' from religions that should be told they no longer count?

If _no_ gods _actually_ have these powers, then how can you say that these powers would be required of gods?

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1749 Aug 23, 2012
Hedonist wrote:
<quoted text>
Okay, I really don't want to get into this Skeptic thing, really.
But it seems to me there is an interesting question here --
Does the statement "X is possible" have any foundation without first defining what is meant by "X"?
I agree that everything that is possible must be considered possible until proven otherwise. But does this also mean that even things that are impossible must be considered possible until proven otherwise?
With the exception of things which are by definition contradictions, everything must be considered possible.

So, example:
It's impossible for a sphere to be a cube.

I don't want a geometry argument! The definition of a sphere and the definition of a cube are both very specific and contradictory.

If something is a sphere is has properties which can not be present in a cube and vice versa.

But in the case of ambiguous definitions like "god" or "intelligent life", there's nothing specifically contradicting these things.

We can't reasonably say, "The definition of a god is something which does not exist, therefore it's impossible for a god to exist because it violates the definition."

You can ascribe whatever criteria you want to the term "god", but until you find criteria which specifically contradicts "existence", then existence is _possible_.

Unlikely? Yes. EXTREMELY unlikely? Yes. Vanishingly small possibility? Yes. Impossible - no.

“I see quantum effects”

Since: Jan 11

In the macro world.

#1750 Aug 23, 2012
Hidingfromyou wrote:
<quoted text>
What you are saying here is that any culture can define "god" and label someone that, no matter whether that someone cannot do as the label is defined.
Pharaohs could not produce miracles of any kind. Not a single one. However, that did not stop people from that culture from experiencing miracles from Pharaohs. Now, you can call their experience whatever you want - misinterpretation of events, hallucination, whatever, but they most certainly experienced miracles from their God-king, even though that God-king was as human as you or I.
In fact, the elite of the Egyptians knew their God-king to be human - they murdered some of them after all.
So if we use your definition "god" loses and gains meaning. It becomes "as people in that culture accept deities" and loses the ways in which we think of deities - beyond human, omnipotent, etc., whatever our definitions might be.
That's fine - it can lead us to understanding other cultures well. But it detracts from "are there deities" in the Western sense. Basically, you've answered it with "yes, as long as people define some existent phenomena (people) as deities, they exist."
Hiding!

Where have you been hiding?

“I see quantum effects”

Since: Jan 11

In the macro world.

#1751 Aug 23, 2012
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
See, this is where you don't grasp the concept.
They can be deluded about the abilities of the god. They can not be deluded about the rank of god. Their belief is what grants the rank.
It's perfectly fine for you to say, "People are deluded if they think Jesus could walk on water."
It's much less reasonable for you to say, "People are deluded if they think that Jesus is the main character in the story of Christianity."
Millions of people think that Harry Potter is a wizard. It doesn't matter that he's not a real person. It also doesn't matter than "wizards" aren't real either.
It's perfectly reasonable for me to say pharaohs were not gods.

It is perfectly reasonable for me to say jesus was not a god.

No sane person thinks Harry Potter is a wizard. Sane people know that Harry Potter is a fictional character in a series of fictional books and movies.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#1752 Aug 23, 2012
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
With the exception of things which are by definition contradictions, everything must be considered possible.
So, example:
It's impossible for a sphere to be a cube.
I don't want a geometry argument! The definition of a sphere and the definition of a cube are both very specific and contradictory.
This depends on your definition of distance. if you use the Chebyshev (or max) metric, then the spheres *are* cubes.

I will concede this is a technical point specific to the terminology of metric spaces, however.

“ecrasez l'infame”

Since: May 08

Atlanta, Georgia

#1753 Aug 23, 2012
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>
With the exception of things which are by definition contradictions, everything must be considered possible.
So, example:
It's impossible for a sphere to be a cube.
I don't want a geometry argument! The definition of a sphere and the definition of a cube are both very specific and contradictory.
If something is a sphere is has properties which can not be present in a cube and vice versa.
But in the case of ambiguous definitions like "god" or "intelligent life", there's nothing specifically contradicting these things.
We can't reasonably say, "The definition of a god is something which does not exist, therefore it's impossible for a god to exist because it violates the definition."
You can ascribe whatever criteria you want to the term "god", but until you find criteria which specifically contradicts "existence", then existence is _possible_.
Unlikely? Yes. EXTREMELY unlikely? Yes. Vanishingly small possibility? Yes. Impossible - no.
Yes, but until we have a definition, we also can't reasonable say "The definition of a god is something which could exist".

“I see quantum effects”

Since: Jan 11

In the macro world.

#1754 Aug 23, 2012
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>What specific powers are required of a god? Can you give me a list of gods which actually have these powers and a list of 'false gods' from religions that should be told they no longer count?

If _no_ gods _actually_ have these powers, then how can you say that these powers would be required of gods?
Gods don't actually exist.

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1755 Aug 23, 2012
Aerobatty wrote:
<quoted text>
It's perfectly reasonable for me to say pharaohs were not gods.
It is perfectly reasonable for me to say jesus was not a god.
No sane person thinks Harry Potter is a wizard. Sane people know that Harry Potter is a fictional character in a series of fictional books and movies.
Just because a character is fictional does not mean that they do not have a profession.

Were Romeo and Juliet lovers?
Is Bruce Wayne Batman?
Is Ironman one of the Avengers?

By your standards, the answer to all the above questions would be: "No! You are deluded!"

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1756 Aug 23, 2012
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
This depends on your definition of distance. if you use the Chebyshev (or max) metric, then the spheres *are* cubes.
I will concede this is a technical point specific to the terminology of metric spaces, however.
Yeah, this is why I specifically said I don't want to get into a geometry argument.

I just wanted two things which are easy to understand and which can't be the same thing.

My original statement was going to be: A rabbit can't not be a rabbit. However, then I figured people would bring up the VW Rabbit car and blah blah blah.

You get my point though.

In order for something to be impossible, you have to be able to assign it VERY SPECIFIC criteria.

No such criteria has been assigned to "god", even by the people who are not using the dictionary definitions.

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1757 Aug 23, 2012
Hedonist wrote:
<quoted text>
Yes, but until we have a definition, we also can't reasonable say "The definition of a god is something which could exist".
The problem is that "god" is not a definable term in any real way.

As I've been pointing out, there is a VAST difference between the Jewish concept of God (An angry demon/wizard that kills people for no apparent reason) and the Egyptian concept of god (that guy over there who we're building the pyramid for) and the Hawaiian concept of god (this whole island is a giant bomb, don't do anything to piss it off).

To say that "god is impossible" given the VAST criteria that meet the definition is just silly. If any one of the various versions is possible, then the thing is possible.

Since: Sep 07

Valley Village, CA

#1758 Aug 23, 2012
Aerobatty wrote:
<quoted text>
Gods don't actually exist.
Except that they do. Pharaohs were gods. They actually existed.
I'm sure if we had some cult database we could find a handful of people who are currently alive who also fit the job title.

“I see quantum effects”

Since: Jan 11

In the macro world.

#1759 Aug 23, 2012
Nuggin wrote:
<quoted text>Just because a character is fictional does not mean that they do not have a profession.

Were Romeo and Juliet lovers?
Is Bruce Wayne Batman?
Is Ironman one of the Avengers?

By your standards, the answer to all the above questions would be: "No! You are deluded!"
So you think fictional characters exist.

Interesting.

Are you able to function in society or are you a ward of the state?

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