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Old 13th January 2021, 10:31 AM   #321
JoeMorgue
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Whether or not Pascal declared his wager applicable to only this or that very specific God or not seems to be rather beside the point from where I'm sitting and little but a massive Red Herring or hijack.

You can't go "Well my arguments works if you only use it in situations where I tell you to."

Even ignoring the fact that it doesn't work either way be it applied to the Vague God of Vague Vagueness or the 2nd Reform Lutheran Revival Church of Cleveland's God.
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Old 13th January 2021, 10:35 AM   #322
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
You can't go "Well my arguments works if you only use it in situations where I tell you to."
Very true, but that won't stop apologists from increasingly doing just that excuse for the last half a century or so. I mean, I'm having flashbacks of all the HJ arguments where it boiled down to "no, you can't apply our arguments for the historicity of Jesus to Anakin Skywalker, or really to any other character than Jesus."
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Old 13th January 2021, 10:35 AM   #323
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Well, I guess GDon has answered my questions as well as they're going to be answered.

He observes "goodness" and takes it as sufficient evidence to wager his belief on a benevolent deity. He reasons that as long as the deity is benevolent, this wager gives a better chance of ending up in the deity's good graces. He also reasons that if the deity turns out to be malevolent, wagering won't help him anyway.
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Old 13th January 2021, 01:37 PM   #324
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Anyone reading the Bible has to be completely lacking in comprehension to see the god actions described there, as anything other than those of a very nasty and malevolent creature.
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Old 13th January 2021, 01:51 PM   #325
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Anyone reading the Bible has to be completely lacking in comprehension to see the god actions described there, as anything other than those of a very nasty and malevolent creature.
Anyone reading this thread has to be completely lacking comprehension to see the discussion going on here, as being at all concerned with or relevant to that observation. The only person talking about the wager in terms of a benevolent deity is GDon, and he's explicitly not talking about the Christian deity.
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Old 13th January 2021, 02:13 PM   #326
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
You can't go "Well my arguments works if you only use it in situations where I tell you to."
Aren't all arguments like that though? That's the role of premises. Usually they are "missing premises" though, in that they aren't stated outright at the start.

One of the very silly arguments that I've heard from creationists is that carbon-dating is flawed because it can only be used to date organic material in the last 50,000 years. After that it becomes inaccurate. Their reasoning somehow was that if carbon-dating is valid it should work over millions of years. But that doesn't make it a flaw, it makes it a restriction.
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Old 13th January 2021, 03:08 PM   #327
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If nothing else, carbon dating rules out a 6,000 year old Earth.
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Old 13th January 2021, 03:42 PM   #328
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Anyone reading this thread has to be completely lacking comprehension to see the discussion going on here, as being at all concerned with or relevant to that observation. The only person talking about the wager in terms of a benevolent deity is GDon, and he's explicitly not talking about the Christian deity.

Oh I don't know. The deity in GDon's head may be the Christian deity coincidently. Non the less, there have been some here emphasising the fact, that the deity Pascal had in mind was the Christian one.
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Old 13th January 2021, 04:10 PM   #329
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Aren't all arguments like that though? That's the role of premises.
The problem is that you can't just pull random unconnected premises out of the ass, like "oh noes, you can't apply this argument to anyone else but that guy". Much as it would simplify the life of apologists who don't understand elementary logic, apparently.

A premise must be

A) connected to a valid logical argument before it's worth beans, AND

B) supportable as true itself, otherwise the argument becomes UNSOUND.

Attempting to restrict what you apply to, without soundly supporting that it is in fact the only one it can actually apply to, violates at least B.

"Billy Joe Bob was killed with this rock BECAUSE it's the only thing around with blood and bits of tissue on it matching his DNA" is ok as a premise.

"Billy Joe Bob was killed with this rock because I only want to consider this rock, and you're forbidden from examining anything else from the scene because I didn't" is just flippin' stupid.
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Old 13th January 2021, 04:55 PM   #330
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
"Billy Joe Bob was killed with this rock because I only want to consider this rock, and you're forbidden from examining anything else from the scene because I didn't" is just flippin' stupid.
It is, however, consistent with the presupposition that this is the only rock that exists.
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Old 13th January 2021, 05:01 PM   #331
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Pretty much, yes.
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Old 13th January 2021, 07:31 PM   #332
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
If nothing else, carbon dating rules out a 6,000 year old Earth.
The floors of the caves in Carlsbad Caverns are bat guano. And I mean a LOT of bat guano. There are sections of the caves where the bats roost where the bat guano is more than 50 ft deep.

Cores have been taken from these sections and they have been carbon dated. What has been found is that the 14C ratios decrease steadily as you go deeper, and it is about 1000 years per foot.

By using this approach, they have been able to date down to about 30 feet, after which the amount of 14C is too small to be measured. 30 feet = 30 000 years. But remember, the pile of guano continues for 20 more feet.

This is a problem for YEC. Why isn't there any 14C below 30 feet? There is a simple scientific explanation for it, but it requires more than 30 000 years of bat guano buildup.
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Old 13th January 2021, 07:33 PM   #333
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Aren't all arguments like that though?
No.

Do you think that's what arguments are?
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Old 13th January 2021, 10:03 PM   #334
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Originally Posted by pgwenthold View Post
The floors of the caves in Carlsbad Caverns are bat guano. And I mean a LOT of bat guano. There are sections of the caves where the bats roost where the bat guano is more than 50 ft deep.

Cores have been taken from these sections and they have been carbon dated. What has been found is that the 14C ratios decrease steadily as you go deeper, and it is about 1000 years per foot.

By using this approach, they have been able to date down to about 30 feet, after which the amount of 14C is too small to be measured. 30 feet = 30 000 years. But remember, the pile of guano continues for 20 more feet.

This is a problem for YEC. Why isn't there any 14C below 30 feet? There is a simple scientific explanation for it, but it requires more than 30 000 years of bat guano buildup.
I would add though that it gets even worse for creationists. There are a lot more ways to date something even by radioactive decay, than just C14.

By comparison, dating rocks via Uranium-238's decay to lead-206 relies on a half life of 4.5 BILLION years. The half life is literally almost a million times longer than that of C14. Anyway, you could literally go all the way back to the whole flippin' age of Earth, and not only you wouldn't be past its usability, you'd barely be hitting the half-life.

In fact, forget Earth. You could literally use it to date rocks as old as the universe, if we ever find any rocks that old. Like, literally, if we found a chunk of matter that was formed when the first stars ever went supernova, even that wouldn't be too old to date that way.

The creationist nutcases are really only fond of picking on carbon dating because it has the shortest span. The others, they're simply not able to pick on, so they try to pretend they don't exist.
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Old 13th January 2021, 10:13 PM   #335
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I remember years ago on a now-defunct forum, a creationist being stunned because they didn't know of the existence of other kinds of radiometric dating. They had to concede that it was not a good argument. It didn't change their conviction, just their use of the argument.
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Old 13th January 2021, 10:17 PM   #336
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Well, yeah, I don't expect that whoever told him about C14's limited span also told him about ways to date older stuff.
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Old 13th January 2021, 10:19 PM   #337
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
Well, yeah, I don't expect that whoever told him about C14's limited span also told him about ways to date older stuff.
Did you know that they date the rocks from the fossils they find in them, and they date the fossils from the rocks they find them in?
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Old 13th January 2021, 10:22 PM   #338
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Did you know that they date the rocks from the fossils they find in them, and they date the fossils from the rocks they find in them?
Not necessarily. Sometimes you do, sometimes you don't. Depending on what you have to work with, you can date one, the other, or both.

There are rocks that can't even have fossils in them, for example, but are still pretty much the ideal case for one kind of dating or another. E.g., if you find zirconium crystals, you're not going to find any fossils in those, but it's pretty much THE ideal mineral to date via uranium decay.
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Old 13th January 2021, 10:27 PM   #339
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
Not necessarily. Sometimes you do, sometimes you don't. Depending on what you have to work with, you can date one, the other, or both.

There are rocks that can't even have fossils in them, for example, but are still pretty much the ideal case for one kind of dating or another. E.g., if you find zirconium crystals, you're not going to find any fossils in those, but it's pretty much THE ideal mineral to date via uranium decay.
Lol yeah. But they're unsinkable rubber ducks. Back when I was cutting my teeth in skepticism, I made great use of the Index to Creationist Claims on Talk Origins.
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Old 13th January 2021, 11:16 PM   #340
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Ah, you mean you were just saying the kind of canards those numbnuts like to repeat? Yeah, they're saying the darndest things.
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Old 14th January 2021, 12:26 AM   #341
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Well, I guess GDon has answered my questions as well as they're going to be answered.

He observes "goodness" and takes it as sufficient evidence to wager his belief on a benevolent deity. He reasons that as long as the deity is benevolent, this wager gives a better chance of ending up in the deity's good graces. He also reasons that if the deity turns out to be malevolent, wagering won't help him anyway.
What?? You don't know what you are talking about!!! Pascal's wager is not about wagering on a benevolent deity versus a malevolent one.

You can only gain all or lose nothing if you believe in the Christian religion.

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Old 14th January 2021, 12:59 AM   #342
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Aren't all arguments like that though? That's the role of premises. Usually they are "missing premises" though, in that they aren't stated outright at the start.

One of the very silly arguments that I've heard from creationists is that carbon-dating is flawed because it can only be used to date organic material in the last 50,000 years. After that it becomes inaccurate. Their reasoning somehow was that if carbon-dating is valid it should work over millions of years. But that doesn't make it a flaw, it makes it a restriction.
Why would creationist be worried about carbon-dating for organic material over 50,000 years old when they argue that the world was created no more that 10,000 years ago???
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Old 14th January 2021, 01:06 AM   #343
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Whether or not Pascal declared his wager applicable to only this or that very specific God or not seems to be rather beside the point from where I'm sitting and little but a massive Red Herring or hijack.

You can't go "Well my arguments works if you only use it in situations where I tell you to."

Even ignoring the fact that it doesn't work either way be it applied to the Vague God of Vague Vagueness or the 2nd Reform Lutheran Revival Church of Cleveland's God.
What is even more bizarre is that GDon, a theist, believes Pascal wager can work for his unknown arbitrary God when in fact Pascal's wager is just an argument for baseless superstition.
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Old 14th January 2021, 04:19 AM   #344
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Originally Posted by dejudge View Post
What is even more bizarre is that GDon, a theist, believes Pascal wager can work for his unknown arbitrary God when in fact Pascal's wager is just an argument for baseless superstition.
I don't even have a problem with him believing it can work for his god. What seems a lot more strange is that he seems to think it works ONLY for his god, for no good reason.
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Old 14th January 2021, 06:07 AM   #345
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
It was! And I really appreciate the time and serious effort you put into this post, and for that matter, all your previous posts in this thread. It does me no end of good having ideas and beliefs challenged, and that is part of the reason I return to this board. ...

... I just want to thank you for making this discussion both enjoyable and uncomfortable (in the best way!) Too often these types of discussions turn into snarky sarcasm fests. But I like that you are fair and serious. Even though you aren't hesitant in calling out what you see as nonsense, you also explain it so I know where you are coming from. I can't want better than that. ...

... Again, I truly appreciate you spending time to read through my points and responding to them. Many of your questions and points raised issues for me to think through. It's the reason I come back to this board. I wish there could be more such serious but fruitful interactions on this board like I've had with you. And I look forward to further ones with you! Thanks Chanakya!

Thanks for the kind words, GDon. Same here, this discussion was a pleasure.

For one thing, I got to learn a few factual things about Pascal's Wager that I hadn't been aware of before this. Besides, it's great that you are comfortable opening up your beliefs so candidly. Not only are you not put off by frank criticism, but you actually go out of your way to welcome it, so that these discussions offer one a chance, seldom found IRL, of very clearly examining (this specific instance of) how theism works. That you are able to freely admit that some of your beliefs are no more than subjective and unsupported and based on faith, makes these discussions all the more clear and therefore meaningful.


Quote:
... I think we are starting to repeat ourselves, which suggests that the natural ending of the discussion is close at hand...

Agreed. Fun talking, but it may be time now to let this rest.


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... I'm happy to answer any final questions, or even continue discussion on any particular point you're interested in pursuing if you like ...

I'm going to leave some final comments and observations here, that you may respond to one last time, if you think that might add value to what we've already said. (Or you could just leave it be if you wish, perfectly fine with me either way, no worries!)


Quote:
I guess then it comes down to how much detail is required. For me, your description below of "not harming others unnecessarily, being generally kind to others, being capable of empathy to others" is enough detail.


It's actually a good question: how does one justify "living a good life"? I honestly don't know. But I think most people would agree with your description, despite the subjective nature of the question.

But while I agree with regards to the level of description needed in the "investing wisely" analogy, I don't think it is needed in the case of "living a good life". That's a point where the analogy fails. I think the definition you gave is enough detail.


I believe that I am fairly clear in my own mind what makes for a good life, based on what I've learned and believe personally. Someone else may have a different view to mine, and that's fine. Personally I don't consider "Live a good life and you'll win regardless of whether there is a God or not" an empty platitude, though that's my opinion.

On the contrary, this is precisely the point where the analogy you introduced holds up especially well, and helps make the point crystal clear.

You're conflating two very different things here (no doubt because our exchanges had gotten so very lengthy and involved!). I'm not saying your motto of "Live a good life and you'll win regardless of whether there is a God or not" is a platitude, at all. That wasn't what I'd meant.

You'd said, early on, that merely stating that you're going for "a good life" is enough, without necessarily going into further detail, as far as this particular "turtle" -- same as merely saying "investing wisely" is adequate, without going into any further detail. You'd said that that detailing would comprise the next "turtle", not this initial one.

Well, that was the context in which I was pointing out to you two things:

(a) I was trying to show you how, unless you do clearly explain what you mean by "investing wisely", that phrase "investing wisely" remains a platitude to someone who might not know what you mean by it. Also, unless you clarify to yourself what it means, even to yourself it remains no more than a platitude, or, at best, shorthand for implicit and unexamined assumptions. Which is why it is necessary to spell out in some detail what you mean by "investing wisely" (as well as "good life") as part of this "turtle" itself.

(b) Despite that disclaimer of yours, that I'd been arguing against as above, you did subsequently state your own definition of a good life. And you also agreed with my loose definition (that I'd posted in a different context). Which is fine, generally speaking, but you also do need to defend it, in the present specific context. Just like when you say 'saving and investing early even if in small amounts initially' as well as 'spreading your investments across asset classes' are (parts of) what "investing wisely" means, it is necessary for you to defend your prescriptions clearly in the context of "how to become wealthy/rich" (which is the original question to which "investing wisely" was your answer) -- and those answers, in this case, in this analogy, would be, in the first case, compounding returns, and in the second, diversification -- similarly, when you use some description/prescription of "good life", then you must clearly defend this in terms of being rewarded for it by God (which is the point of the Wager, and the reason why this question is being asked in the first place at this time). Unless you are able to do that, unless you are able to clearly defend your prescription in the context of the original question, your friend will be unable to offer either informed agreement or informed disagreement, and your own choices will remain implicit and probably unexamined and to that extent sub-optimal.


-----
-----


Thinking about this whole Wager thing in light of our whole discussion, here's what occurs to me. (This isn't some rigorous research-based analysis of wagers, just me thinking aloud and gassing away. But such as they are, I think you might find these thoughts meaningful.)

It seems to me wagers can be one of two categories: either objective, or subjective.

Here's what I mean. I myself play the lottery. Once, maybe twice a year, I invest a small sum of money for a ticket to some truly large jackpot -- not just some hundred thousands, which is nice to have but changes nothing, but actual life-changing millions. This is an objective wager, in the sense that I clearly know the (very very slim) odds of my winning. No one can possibly disagree with me as far as the terms of the Wager and the odds on offer (assuming the lottery is conducted honestly and transparently). The only disagreement might be on policy (you may choose not to play at all, or maybe you choose to play more often or wager larger amounts when you do play). Your Pascal's Wager is clearly not this kind of objective wager.

As for subjective wagers? I'm not a gambling man, but I do know a thing or two about investing. When I'm looking at a particular scrip, and especially when I'm value-investing, I'm necessarily backing a personal, ultimately subjective valuation of a stock or a bond or a derivative or for that matter some index. To some extent the gambler playing poker or working the casino might be thought to be wagering similarly, that is, subjectively.

Well, Pascal's Wager is clearly a subjective wager, in this sense.

Which makes your wagering fairly acceptable, when you think about it. Lots of people do it, after all, in other contexts.

But, however, on the other hand: Can you defend your subjective take? That is the all-important question. How do I defend my ultimately subjective valuation of an option? I plug in ultimately subjective fundamental parameters; and technical parameters as well, if I'm minded that way; as well as broader market movement parameters like forex flows into or away from some (stock/bond/options) market as a whole; as well as bond pricing parameters, if that happens to be relevant for that asset class; and so on and so forth. My take remains subjective, all through: but I'm able to at least defend my reasons, I can at least clearly spell out and explain my reasons (that you may agree with or not, depending on your subjective take).

The gambler on the other hand? Now I'm not necessarily looking down at the poker player or the habitual casino rat. No doubt some of those dudes can play a pretty well-thought-out and entirely reasonably strategized game, at least in theory. The question is, can they, if questioned, clearly spell out why they are placing the bets they're placing? To the extent that they can clearly analyze their reasons and defend them, to that extent, even while wagering subjectively, they're wagering (relatively) rationally. And if all they're backing is some gut feel, that they cannot actually analyze or put into words, then they're clearly dealing in unexamined guesses. Irrespective of whether the wager turns out to be successful or not, I'd venture to say that that kind of unexamined wagering is (relatively) less rational.

So, Pascal's Wager? I'd say it's more akin to (gut-feel, unexamined) gambling, where you're taking whole hosts of things for granted, unexamined, undefended. (Like for example the starting premise itself, which, as you put it, is 'Either there is no God, or else there is an omni-max God, as far as my Wager'. There are many other such entirely subjective assumptions along the way, as we've seen and discussed.) Many gamblers do bet that way, betting away on a hunch. Hell, many play the stock market and the commodities market that way too.

Irrespective of whether that kind of knee-jerk, unexamined wagering ends up winning or not -- after all, plain luck can indeed lead a wild stock bet to "win" over detailed painstaking modeling-based investments -- I don't think I'd ever describe that kind of strategy as "brilliant". Would you, on thinking this over?


-----
-----


Oh, and one last thing?

Basis all that you've said, frankly, I don't think you're wagering at all. You've said that you'd already turned to theism before you 'found' Pascal's Wager. Also, your idea of "good" you do not derive from some God-idea, that is what comes instinctively to you. So that, you picked on your own ideas of good, juxtaposed it against your already-arrived-at theism, and further juxtaposed that against your own ideas of a tri-omni-max God; and, finding all of this reflected in Pascal's Wager (albeit with a bit of twisting and turning to fit in your non-Christian generic God), what you found in Pascal was not so much a reason to wager, as a rationalization for what you had in any case already come to think and to believe. That is, Pascal's Wager offered you a way to feel good about the conclusions you'd already arrived at in any case.

So that what we have here is, quite literally, rationalization. That opinion of "brilliance" is more a recognition of congruence, of synchronicity, of your thoughts with what you found in Pascal, than anything else.

At least that is how it appears to me. I'm happy to be corrected if you think I'm misreading this in any way.

Last edited by Chanakya; 14th January 2021 at 06:17 AM.
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Old 14th January 2021, 07:17 AM   #346
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Originally Posted by dejudge View Post
What?? You don't know what you are talking about!!! Pascal's wager is not about wagering on a benevolent deity versus a malevolent one.

You can only gain all or lose nothing if you believe in the Christian religion.

Pascal's Pensees
Please, I beg you: Go find someone who cares. Start another thread if you have to, since nobody in this thread seems to care.
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Old 14th January 2021, 08:21 AM   #347
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Originally Posted by dejudge
.... You don't know what you are talking about!!! Pascal's wager is not about wagering on a benevolent deity versus a malevolent one.

You can only gain all or lose nothing if you believe in the Christian religion.

Pascal's Pensees
Quote
Quote:
No sect or religion has always existed on earth, but the Christian religion.
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Please, I beg you: Go find someone who cares. Start another thread if you have to, since nobody in this thread seems to care.
You must first read the Pensees to find out what Pascal's wager is.

According to Pascal Deism [theism] is almost the same as atheism.

Pascal Pensees
Quote:
And on this ground they take occasion to revile the Christian religion, because they misunderstand it.

They imagine that it consists simply in the worship of a God considered as great, powerful, and eternal; which is strictly deism, almost as far removed from the Christian religion as atheism, which is its exact opposite.
GDon's belief in an imaginary made-up omni God does not work for Pascal's wager.

Last edited by Agatha; 14th January 2021 at 10:30 AM. Reason: fix quote tags
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Old 14th January 2021, 08:24 AM   #348
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This why theological apologetics is such a farce.

The second you start splitting hairs between types of belief you're admitting you're just wrong.

There's no dragon in my garage. The only proper response is either "There is no dragon in my garage" or, more appropriately, never saying anything because no one even bothered asking the question in the first place because you have no reason to.

When you start going "Oh but are you saying you have a positive that there is not a dragon in your garage or a negative belief in a dragon in your garage?" or introducing concepts like "dragonistic" you're wrong.
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Old 14th January 2021, 08:24 AM   #349
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Originally Posted by dejudge View Post
You don't know what you are talking about!!! Pascal's wager is not about wagering on a benevolent deity versus a malevolent one.

You can only gain all or lose nothing if you believe in the Christian religion.

Pascal's Pensees
Quote



You must first read the Pensees to find out what Pascal's wager is.

According to Pascal Deism [theism] is almost the same as atheism.

Pascal Pensees

GDon's belief in an imaginary made-up omni God does not work for Pascal's wager.
https://giphy.com/gifs/i-dont-care-i...-oDXiRdueeFtE4

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Old 14th January 2021, 11:45 AM   #350
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Originally Posted by GDon View Post
Aren't all arguments like that though? That's the role of premises. Usually they are "missing premises" though, in that they aren't stated outright at the start.
No, that is not how logic works. That is how apologetics works. If this thread has taught me anything it is that apologetics and logic have barely ever met IRL
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Old 14th January 2021, 12:18 PM   #351
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
This why theological apologetics is such a farce.

The second you start splitting hairs between types of belief you're admitting you're just wrong.

There's no dragon in my garage. The only proper response is either "There is no dragon in my garage" or, more appropriately, never saying anything because no one even bothered asking the question in the first place because you have no reason to.

When you start going "Oh but are you saying you have a positive that there is not a dragon in your garage or a negative belief in a dragon in your garage?" or introducing concepts like "dragonistic" you're wrong.
I think the safest is to assume there's a dragon in your garage, and park accordingly. Beowulf's Wager, perhaps.

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Old 14th January 2021, 01:47 PM   #352
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
And if all they're backing is some gut feel, that they cannot actually analyze or put into words, then they're clearly dealing in unexamined guesses. Irrespective of whether the wager turns out to be successful or not, I'd venture to say that that kind of unexamined wagering is (relatively) less rational.

So, Pascal's Wager? I'd say it's more akin to (gut-feel, unexamined) gambling, where you're taking whole hosts of things for granted, unexamined, undefended. (Like for example the starting premise itself, which, as you put it, is 'Either there is no God, or else there is an omni-max God, as far as my Wager'. There are many other such entirely subjective assumptions along the way, as we've seen and discussed.) Many gamblers do bet that way, betting away on a hunch. Hell, many play the stock market and the commodities market that way too.
I just wanted to highlight this comment, because I think it's an excellent and insightful point with regards to Pascal's Wager.
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Old 14th January 2021, 02:30 PM   #353
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Pascal's wager is the best analysis tool for an intentionally unanalyzed decision?

That actually is insightful.
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Old 14th January 2021, 03:34 PM   #354
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Originally Posted by Chanakya
And if all they're backing is some gut feel, that they cannot actually analyze or put into words, then they're clearly dealing in unexamined guesses. Irrespective of whether the wager turns out to be successful or not, I'd venture to say that that kind of unexamined wagering is (relatively) less rational.

So, Pascal's Wager? I'd say it's more akin to (gut-feel, unexamined) gambling, where you're taking whole hosts of things for granted, unexamined, undefended. (Like for example the starting premise itself, which, as you put it, is 'Either there is no God, or else there is an omni-max God, as far as my Wager'. There are many other such entirely subjective assumptions along the way, as we've seen and discussed.) Many gamblers do bet that way, betting away on a hunch. Hell, many play the stock market and the commodities market that way too.

Originally Posted by GDon View Post
I just wanted to highlight this comment, because I think it's an excellent and insightful point with regards to Pascal's Wager.
Well, I just want to highlight GDon's comment on Pascal's wager.

Originally Posted by GDon
...Pascal points out that the Wager is about more than just belief, but happiness......(Page 39)

Pascal concludes that the Wager is more than just about getting a reward in the afterlife, but has real-world implications also....(Page 40)

I find that brilliant and convincing. .........
So, those "unexamined guesses" by Pascal are considered to be "brilliant and convincing" to GDon.
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Old 14th January 2021, 03:58 PM   #355
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I have touched on this before and received no reaction from others, but I have difficulty with the concept of somebody "choosing" to believe in God, and going through the motions of loving* and fearing Him**, with some confidence that the omniscient one will be fooled.

* Jesus made a big point of this according to Mathew.
** Lots of this in in the Bible also. Abraham for one got the tick of approval for this.

Loving and fearing simultaneously is a difficult concept for me, but I have observed the faithful accepting this with a shrug.
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Old 14th January 2021, 04:01 PM   #356
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@dejudge
TBF that's taking it out of contex, although it's one of the rare cases where the out-of-context version is actually smarter than the original

GDon was really saying that he finds Pascal's faith-in-faith argument brilliant and convincing, rather than strictly speaking the Wager itself.

And frankly, that's even worse. I mean, at least the wager is backed by some pseudo-maths based on game theory. I can at least see how that would look convincing to people who haven't put much thought into it. The faith-in-faith part, however, is one of the dumbest (and most extended) cases of bare postulates in history. Finding THAT brilliant is... less defensible by half, to say the least.
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Old 14th January 2021, 04:11 PM   #357
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Is it just me that keeps reading "Pascal's Pensees" totally wrong?
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Old 14th January 2021, 04:12 PM   #358
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
I have touched on this before and received no reaction from others, but I have difficulty with the concept of somebody "choosing" to believe in God, and going through the motions of loving* and fearing Him**, with some confidence that the omniscient one will be fooled.

* Jesus made a big point of this according to Mathew.
** Lots of this in in the Bible also. Abraham for one got the tick of approval for this.

Loving and fearing simultaneously is a difficult concept for me, but I have observed the faithful accepting this with a shrug.
To be fair, biblically the fear thing is mostly Old Testament and the love thing is mostly New. Some people have speculated that the god of the Old Testament and the god of the New Testament are actually different gods, but I don't think this theory has much traction among people who think they know what they're talking about.
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Old 14th January 2021, 04:14 PM   #359
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Is it just me that keeps reading "Pascal's Pensees" totally wrong?
Nah. I'm pretty sure dejudge is reading them wrong as w- Oh.

No, it's not just you.

ETA:
I for one find Pascal's P____ "brilliant and convincing".

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Old 14th January 2021, 04:19 PM   #360
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
To be fair, biblically the fear thing is mostly Old Testament and the love thing is mostly New. Some people have speculated that the god of the Old Testament and the god of the New Testament are actually different gods, but I don't think this theory has much traction among people who think they know what they're talking about.
It used to actually be a pretty big thing with most Gnostics, and a few other sects. But after 1000+ years of getting burned at the stake if you're one of those, unsurprisingly it became an almost non-existent minority.
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