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Religious Nuts Kill Own Daughter—Is Their Sentence Appropriate?

 
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:18 pm
The Evolution Of Superstitious And Superstition-Like Behaviour

Quote:
Superstitions often seem irrational, even stupid, but they a widespread and pervasive part of human life. Why is this?

Using a mathematical model, we investigated whether superstitious behaviours are a predicted product of evolution by natural selection.

The results are clear: superstitions are a part of adaptive behaviour in all organisms as they attempt to make sense of an uncertain world. Humans are heavily affected by culture as well as evolution.

Nevertheless, our analysis suggests that cultural effects are shaped by an evolved tendency to readily associate events, so readily that individuals often make superstitious mistakes.

Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences


full study in PDF format
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:25 pm
@DrewDad,
Quote:
The results are clear: superstitions are a part of adaptive behaviour in all organisms as they attempt to make sense of an uncertain world.


Uhm . . . does that study tell us what superstitions are common among spirochetes? Have they identified the most common superstitions of blue-green algae? You know, statements such as that hardly conduce to their credibility.
McGentrix
 
  2  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:29 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:

Quote:
I believe religion to be a byproduct of Man's imagination, grasp for power, and answer to puzzling problems, but not a byproduct of evolution.


Man's imagination, grasp for power, and his search for answers for puzzling problems are all evolved traits.



Does that mean that cars are due directly to evolution? Or, are cars merely a tool man uses. Religion and science are tools, not the results of evolution.
0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  -1  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:30 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
Quote:
for those who champion the cause of religion, in my experience, actively resist argumentation based on science and logic. I have merely endeavored to answer your question posed earlier, and have done exactly that.


It is you who are championing the cause of religion-- not me. You are arguing for an absolute truth-- where your beliefs are right by some objective standard in the universe that exists outside of human experience.

You are then arguing that other views of right and wrong are against the universal truth-- i.e. you are arguing that every religion is wrong.

The fundamentalist Christians believe that every world view except theirs is wrong. You are agreeing with them (except you add one more religion to the list).

My view is that humans, with all of our traits including religion, are just another species of animal. Basically a product of random chemical reactions that developed with no meaning or purpose. What any specific human thinks about right or wrong suggests no truth about the universe, and is really of no import in the grand scheme of things.

DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:32 pm
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:
If religion were hard-wired into us by evolution, it would have to be always, not simply often.

Absolutely false.

Certainly our evolution has shaped us and made some behaviors more common than others, but we are not all clones. There is genetic variation.
DrewDad
 
  -1  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:34 pm
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:

Quote:
The results are clear: superstitions are a part of adaptive behaviour in all organisms as they attempt to make sense of an uncertain world.


Uhm . . . does that study tell us what superstitions are common among spirochetes? Have they identified the most common superstitions of blue-green algae? You know, statements such as that hardly conduce to their credibility.

Take it up with the authors of the study or, more properly, the journalist who reported on the study.
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:36 pm
@ebrown p,
Quote:
You are arguing for an absolute truth


Full stop; no, I'm not, and you apparently are so poor at understanding other people's arguments, that you completely make up a new one to argue against.

Quote:
What any specific human thinks about right or wrong suggests no truth about the universe, and is really of no import in the grand scheme of things.


It's only important to us. Our 'truths' are only relevant to us. I have consistently said this all along.

Done wasting my time, you asked for something, got an answer, didn't like the answer (because it destroyed your argument) and now we're engaged in a back-and-forth, the topic of which shifts as soon as you run up against a point you can't respond to.

Reminds me why I generally stay out of conversations with those who defend the Religious position; they can't be trusted to have an intellectually honest discussion.

Cycloptichorn
Setanta
 
  0  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:47 pm
@DrewDad,
Don't tell me what to do, clown. I wasn't taking it up with you, or with anyone else. I was simply making an observation of the credibility of such a claim, which approaches zero.
0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  0  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:49 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
You and Setanta each have an annoying habit of declaring victory by fiat (kind of ironic in this topic).

Quote:
It's only important to us. Our 'truths' are only relevant to us.


The question is who is encompassed in "us". You seem to be claiming some consistency in thought that is shared by the whole human race. If you will define "us" as "modern Americans", then we are in agreement.

I think (and correct me if I misunderstood) that you are claiming that your belief that Homosexuality is not wrong is based on some universal truth (or at least encompassing every human being). And then you claim that this is backed up by science.

But the fact is you believe that humans should have rights. I agree with you (except I don't appeal to any universal truth).

There are scientific facts relating to these moral questions (i.e. if they distroy marriages)... but these scientific facts are irrelevant to the core question (which is a matter of values).

Let me ask you this hypothetical... if scientific research showed you conclusively that Homosexuality did have a negative effect on heterosexual marriage, would it change your mind about whether it is good to give rights for homosexuals in society?

At least for me-- on the big moral questions, these scientific questions are really side issues.

I support civil rights based on my belief that in freedom and human dignity. These core beliefs are neither testable or measurable.

Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:49 pm
@DrewDad,
Note that i said if religion were hard-wired into us. Except for those who are physically defective, and therefore highly unlikely to reproduce, all humans are capable of pattern-recognition--all of us. Look at your Royal Society study. So don't try that ipse dixit **** that Brown has been practicing by saying "False," as though you were an unimpeachable authority.
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 02:54 pm
Skinners studies with induced homosexuality in several species had been well published over 50 years ago. I dont think hes been refuted.
ebrown p
 
  0  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 03:00 pm
@farmerman,
Good, you are here Farmerman. Could you please correct Setanta's misconceptions about evolution (he won't listen to me). Particularly could you explain how social behavior is an evolved trait even when it helps a group to reproduce (even when it doesn't directly impact an individual).

0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 03:03 pm
@ebrown p,
Quote:
You and Setanta each have an annoying habit of declaring victory by fiat (kind of ironic in this topic).


I've only indicated my desire to withdraw from the topic, now that your question has been sufficiently answered. I'm not interested in your half-baked attempts at philosophical discussion in the slightest.

Cycloptichorn
DrewDad
 
  0  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 03:08 pm
@Setanta,
What you said, is that if religion is the result of evolution then it would have to be present in everyone.

Setanta wrote:
If religion were hard-wired into us by evolution, it would have to be always, not simply often.


Now, that might not be what you meant, but what you said (or typed, given your penchant for devolving the conversation into pedantry), is patently false.

Eye color is the result of evolution, and not everyone has the same color eyes. Hell, not everyone has eyes.

You then proceed from that flawed premise to declare victory.

Not exactly your greatest intellectual achievement.
ebrown p
 
  0  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 03:20 pm
@DrewDad,
Quote:

You then proceed from that flawed premise to declare victory.

Not exactly your greatest intellectual achievement.


Are you sure about this?
ebrown p
 
  0  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 03:22 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
Quote:

I've only indicated my desire to withdraw from the topic, now that your question has been sufficiently answered. I'm not interested in your half-baked attempts at philosophical discussion in the slightest.


You don't seem to be doing any better at withdrawing from the topic than you did at sufficiently answering my question.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  0  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 03:30 pm
@ebrown p,
Setanta's a pretty smart guy.

Tends to arrogance, though....




(I, on the other hand, am more humble than Jesus.)
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 05:12 pm
@DrewDad,
Everyone who is not physically deformed has eyes, so if Brown's premise were true, then everyone who were not religious would have to be considered deformed. I feel reasonably certain that both you and Brown consider anyone who doesn't agree with your "wisdom" to be deformed--but that doesn't make it so.

By the way, i didn't declare victory, and i wasn't trying to win anything. Brown alleged a premise which he has not been able to sustain, which means he loses--that doesn't automatically mean that anyone won. Believe it or not, the world is not relentlessly dualist, with nothing but polar opposites.

Given the apparent level of your intellectual achievement, judging by what you have posted here, i'm not surprised that you don't understand that.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 05:17 pm
@ebrown p,
I didn't "declare victory." I just said you lose. You advanced a proposition which you have not been able to sustain. That means you lose. That doesn't mean that "i win," or even that i think that i win. I wasn't trying to win anything. You're like the clowns who consider atheists to be the other side of the coin from theists. That's simply not so. The theist says there is a god--i just say, "i don't believe you." You lose because you can't support your thesis--that is not a statement that i've won anything, nor is it a declaration of victory.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  0  
Reply Wed 14 Oct, 2009 05:32 pm
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:

Everyone who is not physically deformed has eyes, so if Brown's premise were true, then everyone who were not religious would have to be considered deformed.

"Deformed" only means that they are different from the current norm. This may or may not be a survival characteristic. Eyes or no eyes, it is all part of evolution, which is an ongoing process.

However, people do have a strong disposition toward superstitions. Batters have rituals they go through before stepping up to the plate, for example.

Setanta wrote:
By the way, i didn't declare victory

You wrote "you lose" as your last line on the post I quoted. Technically, I suppose, that's not declaring victory but rather someone else's defeat.

Nonetheless, you started with a flawed premise, which makes your conclusion false as well.

Setanta wrote:
Given the apparent level of your intellectual achievement, judging by what you have posted here, i'm not surprised that you don't understand that.

Why do you imagine I'm interested in what surprises you?
 

 
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