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"No evidence of mermaids" - Will we ever see a statement like this about God?

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    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-18692830

    "No evidence of aquatic humanoids has ever been found,"

    Whilst the story is light-hearted in nature, I wondered if we would ever see such an emphatic statement about the existence of God being displayed so prominently across the news networks?
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    Depends on what you mean by evidence.

    Define it.


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    (Original post by .eXe)
    Depends on what you mean by evidence.

    Define it.


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    I imagine scientists would define it by empirical evidence, DNA tissue samples etc. Remember though, scientists are not the ones claiming that God/Mermaids exist.

    Surely if someone makes a claim for something, then they need the evidence to back it up. In this case there was no evidence for Mermaids, thus the agency in question could definitively say that they don't exist. My point wasn't to just ask "does God exist?" - because there are a dozen other threads on that strand here.

    I was rather pointing out whether the scientific community could be so bold and make another similar statement to this about God. Would there be a backlash from society? Or would it go unnoticed? - Of course individual scientists have been saying this for years, but could you ever envision the Royal Society or UNESCO declaring a similar statement about God?
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    (Original post by Carter78)
    I imagine scientists would define it by empirical evidence, DNA tissue samples etc. Remember though, scientists are not the ones claiming that God/Mermaids exist.

    Surely if someone makes a claim for something, then they need the evidence to back it up. In this case there was no evidence for Mermaids, thus the agency in question could definitively say that they don't exist.
    Why must everything be judged by the standards of science?

    Do you define calculus based on the standards of genetics?

    I asked you to define evidence, not give me what scientists take it to mean. The concept of god is applied universally, not to scientists only. So why is it only their definition of evidence which is taken as the defacto standard?


    Edit: lol bring on the negs atheists. While you're at it, please muster the courage to post why I am wrong to say that.

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    (Original post by .eXe)
    Why must everything be judged by the standards of science?

    Do you define calculus based on the standards of genetics?

    I asked you to define evidence, not give me what scientists take it to mean. The concept of god is applied universally, not to scientists only. So why is it only their definition of evidence which is taken as the defacto standard?


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    Sorry to not be clearer, I would define evidence in broadly similar terms as the scientists would. Of course you might say to me "then give me evidence for love!", which obviously exists - as we would define it culturally/linguistically. (Although you could also point to chemical reactions within the body/brain as a result of "love).

    But the question of whether God exists has very scientific implications because of the ramifications for questions such as "what created the Universe"? or the origins of life, or even the suspensions of the laws of physics in miracles.

    Whenever these issues/questions are debated then the concept of God is inevitably involved to some degree. Therefore the ramifications would be huge if it could be scientifically proven that God existed.
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    (Original post by Carter78)
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-18692830

    "No evidence of aquatic humanoids has ever been found,"

    Whilst the story is light-hearted in nature, I wondered if we would ever see such an emphatic statement about the existence of God being displayed so prominently across the news networks?
    almost certainly now we found the Higgs particle, which is wrongly being called 'the god particle'
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    (Original post by .eXe)
    Why must everything be judged by the standards of science?

    Do you define calculus based on the standards of genetics?

    I asked you to define evidence, not give me what scientists take it to mean. The concept of god is applied universally, not to scientists only. So why is it only their definition of evidence which is taken as the defacto standard?


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    Because emperical evidence is the basis for everything in real life, everything can be found and defined by it.

    You only take issue with such measure because there is none of it to affirm your belief. Much the same as Homeopathy and Mediums. Evidence cannot be a 'feeling' or a vauge 'it's all around us' style assertion, you wouldn't accept such evidence for the existence of electrons, Strong Nuclear Force or radiation, why should we accept such for 'god'.
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    (Original post by .eXe)
    Why must everything be judged by the standards of science?
    Rather than query the definition of evidence, you should concentrate on the word science and understand what it means.

    Collins has:

    the systematic study of the nature and behaviour of the material and physical universe, based on observation, experiment, and measurement, and the formulation of laws to describe these facts in general terms
    Gods, if they exist, surely bear scientific study? The field covers the scrutiny of anything natural.
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    (Original post by Carter78)
    Sorry to not be clearer, I would define evidence in broadly similar terms as the scientists would. Of course you might say to me "then give me evidence for love!", which obviously exists - as we would define it culturally/linguistically. (Although you could also point to chemical reactions within the body/brain as a result of "love).

    But the question of whether God exists has very scientific implications because of the ramifications for questions such as "what created the Universe"? or the origins of life, or even the suspensions of the laws of physics in miracles.

    Whenever these issues/questions are debated then the concept of God is inevitably involved to some degree. Therefore the ramifications would be huge if it could be scientifically proven that God existed.
    Those questions are not scientific at all, at least not categorically. Sure, science would like an answer to them but that doesnt specifically make them scientific questions per se. Theists would also like answers to those questions. Thus, its not merely a concern of science.

    Secondly, if you say that those types of metaphysical questions have large ramifications on science ten surely you cannot discount the even larger ramifications that have on organized religions. Arguably, those questions are much more important to a theist, because they believe that everything was created intelligently rather than through chance or entropy.

    So, your point about "ramifications on science" is moot.

    And since your entire argument is based on that point, the argument itself hasn't been well substantiated.


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    I wish.
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    (Original post by Otkem)
    No because common sense affirms the existence of God.
    Think you ment that the other way.
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    What are you talking about, they are well attested by sources of the period....
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    (Original post by .eXe)
    Those questions are not scientific at all, at least not categorically. Sure, science would like an answer to them but that doesnt specifically make them scientific questions per se. Theists would also like answers to those questions. Thus, its not merely a concern of science.
    Why aren't they scientific questions? If a miracle by definition is a suspension of the laws of physics, then why wouldn't a Physicist be relevant to a discussion of scientific legitimacy for miracles?

    A scientist would have a very important role to play in inspecting the "truthiness" (copyright Stephen Colbert) of the answers to all of those questions.

    (Original post by .eXe)
    Secondly, if you say that those types of metaphysical questions have large ramifications on science ten surely you cannot discount the even larger ramifications that have on organized religions. Arguably, those questions are much more important to a theist, because they believe that everything was created intelligently rather than through chance or entropy.
    I agree with you that the ramifications would be large for both sides. They should be important to all of us. A theist may believe whatever they like, doesn't make it objectionably "true". True to them, but not to the rest of us.

    What would you now say to me if I were to say "I still believe in Mermaids"? Would you say I was wrong to believe this?
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    (Original post by Otkem)
    No because common sense affirms the existence of God.
    Do you know what 'affirms' means? Or maybe it's the term 'common sense' that's tripping you up.
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    (Original post by .eXe)
    Those questions are not scientific at all, at least not categorically. Sure, science would like an answer to them but that doesnt specifically make them scientific questions per se. Theists would also like answers to those questions. Thus, its not merely a concern of science.
    http://www.newscientist.com/article/...aky-drain.html

    How about this individual who discovered the source of "holy water" dripping from a statue of Christ being caused by a leaky drain? You're saying science shouldn't get involved within discussions about miracles?
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    (Original post by .eXe)
    Why must everything be judged by the standards of science?

    Do you define calculus based on the standards of genetics?

    I asked you to define evidence, not give me what scientists take it to mean. The concept of god is applied universally, not to scientists only. So why is it only their definition of evidence which is taken as the defacto standard?

    Because it the only way in which verifiable 'proof' is found. Evidence is usually based on physical proof or people's experiences. However experiences differ from person to person, brains think differently, but scientific proof is intangible.

    Calculus and genetics are both pretty unrelated fields, although both are sciences, not really sure what point that was trying to make?
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    (Original post by Joluk)
    Calculus and genetics are both pretty unrelated fields, although both are sciences, not really sure what point that was trying to make?
    I think the point was that they're unrelated, so why would you use rules defined in one of the fields to prove/disprove a theory located within the other field. It threw me a little at first as well. His point was that God does not fall into the realm of science.

    I disagree, considering the huge implications for science that would be caused if the Universe, life and miracles were all either started or caused by a supernatural being who would be suspending the laws of physics when undertaking such actions.
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    (Original post by Carter78)
    http://www.newscientist.com/article/...aky-drain.html

    How about this individual who discovered the source of "holy water" dripping from a statue of Christ being caused by a leaky drain? You're saying science shouldn't get involved within discussions about miracles?
    I'm sorry but you cannot possibly compare "some claim of holy water" with God. That's taking a little too much liberty with your comparisons.

    Also, I said that those metaphysical questions aren't "categorically" a concern of science. Rather, they are questions that many other branches of knowledge are concerned with...particularly religions.

    My issue however is...since we acknowledge that there are so many other stakeholders involved...why is it only science that is given precedence over the others?

    You can argue sure...that science is empirical and science affects most people, etc but all of those statements are not evaluating the construct of God on its own merits...rather they are just commenting on its effects on the world.

    That's not how objective analysis works.
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    (Original post by Carter78)
    I imagine scientists would define it by empirical evidence, DNA tissue samples etc. Remember though, scientists are not the ones claiming that God/Mermaids exist.

    Surely if someone makes a claim for something, then they need the evidence to back it up. In this case there was no evidence for Mermaids, thus the agency in question could definitively say that they don't exist. My point wasn't to just ask "does God exist?" - because there are a dozen other threads on that strand here.

    I was rather pointing out whether the scientific community could be so bold and make another similar statement to this about God. Would there be a backlash from society? Or would it go unnoticed? - Of course individual scientists have been saying this for years, but could you ever envision the Royal Society or UNESCO declaring a similar statement about God?
    So I guess that the people who had no knowledge of a round earth were right to believe that the world was flat? Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.
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    (Original post by .eXe)
    I'm sorry but you cannot possibly compare "some claim of holy water" with God. That's taking a little too much liberty with your comparisons.
    Then what are sources of miracles if not God? Was it just the work of the Holy Spirit then in this case? Or perhaps the Lady of Fatima? We can split hairs, but it doesn't escape the point that miracles are attributed to the suspension of the laws of physics by God/supernatural beings. Science clearly has a role here to play if it can blow these claims out of the (holy) water.

    (Original post by .eXe)
    Also, I said that those metaphysical questions aren't "categorically" a concern of science. Rather, they are questions that many other branches of knowledge are concerned with...particularly religions.
    We can just agree to disagree on this point. I think science has a role to play.

    (Original post by .eXe)
    My issue however is...since we acknowledge that there are so many other stakeholders involved...why is it only science that is given precedence over the others?
    Because science is neutral. Science doesn't have an agenda. Science doesn't set out to prove something or disprove something, it simply sets out to find empirical evidence for an event/occurrence and from this evidence it draws conclusions. Could you honestly hand on heart say that a Catholic priest would've approached the same story of the holy water coming out of the statue of Christ in India with the same objectivity as a scientist?

    (Original post by .eXe)
    You can argue sure...that science is empirical and science affects most people, etc but all of those statements are not evaluating the construct of God on its own merits...rather they are just commenting on its effects on the world.

    That's not how objective analysis works.
    If someone makes a statement such as "God exists", then they are stating something as if it were fact. Science is an investigation of facts. Objective analysis has been used in this case of the Mermaids and has shown no evidence of their existence. Why cannot the same practice be applied to God?

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