INFORMATION

This website uses cookies to store information on your computer. Some of these cookies are essential to make our site work and others help us to improve by giving us some insight into how the site is being used. For further information, see our Privacy Policy.

The pre-pubescent wonders of science

Just a place where all John's threads can be kept nice and tidy.
Message
Author
User avatar
John Jones
Official Pet Troll
Posts: 29
Joined: October 18th, 2010, 7:21 pm

The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#1 Postby John Jones » October 19th, 2010, 4:01 pm

Many scientists, and of course Richard Dawkins, implore us to leave the fantasies of religion behind and instead observe the extent and beauty of this awesome universe, a universe that only science can show us.

But ... are we like children, easily impressed by show, and by bigger is better? Aren't we, as adults, tired of needing to be "amazed"?

What stirs me is not this one-sided childish view of nature, but the utter emptiness, the ineffable, that lies behind it. A big sky might reveal this better than my finger, but in both cases it isn't science that brings me this view.

What say you, humanists? Isn't it the ineffable that impresses because of its stillness? and not the noise and fireworks of impressive objects?

User avatar
Nick
Posts: 10868
Joined: July 4th, 2007, 10:10 am

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#2 Postby Nick » October 19th, 2010, 5:08 pm

What a curious post, but welcome to the forum anyway :D We have a nice place for introductions. :)

John Jones wrote:Many scientists, and of course Richard Dawkins, implore us to leave the fantasies of religion behind and instead observe the extent and beauty of this awesome universe, a universe that only science can show us.

But ... are we like children, easily impressed by show, and by bigger is better? Aren't we, as adults, tired of needing to be "amazed"?
Hmm... Most humans like to be stimulated to varying degrees... And if you are coming from a christian perspective, did not Jesus tell us to be like children....? :D

What stirs me is not this one-sided childish view of nature, but the utter emptiness, the ineffable, that lies behind it. A big sky might reveal this better than my finger, but in both cases it isn't science that brings me this view.
Hmm...Why is it childish? Why is it one-sided? By "it" are you referring to the universe? If so there is nothing "behind it" either physically or causally.

What say you, humanists? Isn't it the ineffable that impresses because of its stillness? and not the noise and fireworks of impressive objects?
If the ineffable is stillness, doesn't that make it effable? And from your question are we to deduce you do not consider yourself humanist?

User avatar
Emma Woolgatherer
Posts: 2976
Joined: February 27th, 2008, 12:17 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#3 Postby Emma Woolgatherer » October 19th, 2010, 6:05 pm

Hello, John. I'm not sure that I entirely understand your question, but here goes.

Does there have to be a choice between stillness and noise, between the ineffable and the ... ahem ... effable? Surely, most people are impressed by all sorts of things, all sorts of attributes. If something impresses us, it might be because of its vastness or brilliance or intricacy or delicacy or vitality or stillness, or it might be, is more likely to be, a combination of several things. And when I say "people", I mean both adults and children. I think you rather insult children by suggesting that they are impressed only by show and size, and don't value things like stillness and silence and emptiness and smallness. At the same time, I, like plenty of other adults, have not grown tired of being amazed. Perhaps I don't need to be, but I still get a kick out of it, and I'm not ashamed to admit that.

I also don't understand quite what you mean by science "showing" us or "bringing" us a certain view, and I've not heard Richard Dawkins, or anyone else, for that matter, suggesting that science alone can "show" us the beauty of this universe. Dawkins's point, I thought, was that what we learn through science, through observation and experimentation and measurement and formulating hypotheses and testing them, doesn't spoil our appreciation of the universe, and can actually enhance it; that understanding how a rainbow was formed doesn't stop it from being marvellous, doesn't stop us enjoying its beauty, and can give us other things to appreciate about it as well. That doesn't mean that we cannot appreciate the universe, or at least the part of it that is accessible to our senses, just by looking (and listening and smelling and feeling and tasting), and simply letting our emotions respond. And as far as the inaccessible part of the universe is concerned, abandoning religious fantasies does not entail abandoning our imaginations. If anything, it allows us to give our imaginations free rein.

Emma
(cross-posted with Nick)

User avatar
John Jones
Official Pet Troll
Posts: 29
Joined: October 18th, 2010, 7:21 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#4 Postby John Jones » October 20th, 2010, 8:42 pm

Nick wrote:What a curious post, but welcome to the forum anyway :D We have a nice place for introductions. :)

John Jones wrote:Many scientists, and of course Richard Dawkins, implore us to leave the fantasies of religion behind and instead observe the extent and beauty of this awesome universe, a universe that only science can show us.

But ... are we like children, easily impressed by show, and by bigger is better? Aren't we, as adults, tired of needing to be "amazed"?
Hmm... Most humans like to be stimulated to varying degrees... And if you are coming from a christian perspective, did not Jesus tell us to be like children....? :D

What stirs me is not this one-sided childish view of nature, but the utter emptiness, the ineffable, that lies behind it. A big sky might reveal this better than my finger, but in both cases it isn't science that brings me this view.
Hmm...Why is it childish? Why is it one-sided? By "it" are you referring to the universe? If so there is nothing "behind it" either physically or causally.

What say you, humanists? Isn't it the ineffable that impresses because of its stillness? and not the noise and fireworks of impressive objects?
If the ineffable is stillness, doesn't that make it effable? And from your question are we to deduce you do not consider yourself humanist?



Is it charitable, a little worrying, or plain dangerous to react with disbelief toward a direct experience. Why would an experience of stillness have to be interpreted to make sense, but an experience of being amazed at objects not be interpreted? I was worried by this attitude.

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 22416
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#5 Postby Alan H » October 20th, 2010, 9:54 pm

John Jones wrote:But ... are we like children, easily impressed by show, and by bigger is better? Aren't we, as adults, tired of needing to be "amazed"?
I am frequently amazed by this universe and things in it. Why would that make me child-like? I am certainly not tired of being amazed. Are you? What was the last thing that amazed you?
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

Maria Mac
Site Admin
Posts: 8835
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:34 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#6 Postby Maria Mac » October 20th, 2010, 11:18 pm

John Jones wrote:Many scientists, and of course Richard Dawkins, implore us to leave the fantasies of religion behind and instead observe the extent and beauty of this awesome universe, a universe that only science can show us.

But ... are we like children, easily impressed by show, and by bigger is better? Aren't we, as adults, tired of needing to be "amazed"?

What stirs me is not this one-sided childish view of nature, but the utter emptiness, the ineffable, that lies behind it. A big sky might reveal this better than my finger, but in both cases it isn't science that brings me this view.

What say you, humanists? Isn't it the ineffable that impresses because of its stillness? and not the noise and fireworks of impressive objects?

No.

Marian
Posts: 3985
Joined: August 23rd, 2009, 2:25 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#7 Postby Marian » October 21st, 2010, 2:30 am

:pointlaugh: Love it!
Transformative fire...

User avatar
Gurdur
Posts: 610
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 5:00 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#8 Postby Gurdur » October 26th, 2010, 10:05 am

Eff the effable, leave the ineffable to their own (lack of) devices.

User avatar
Lifelinking
Posts: 3248
Joined: July 4th, 2007, 11:56 am

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#9 Postby Lifelinking » October 27th, 2010, 10:59 pm

Is it charitable, a little worrying, or plain dangerous to react with disbelief toward a direct experience. Why would an experience of stillness have to be interpreted to make sense, but an experience of being amazed at objects not be interpreted? I was worried by this attitude.


Once I ate a banana. Fergus ate one too. It is nice in Greenland at this time of year. The fragrant blossom of the zebra tree sounds like a very wise artechoke.
"Who thinks the law has anything to do with justice? It's what we have because we can't have justice."
William McIlvanney

User avatar
John Jones
Official Pet Troll
Posts: 29
Joined: October 18th, 2010, 7:21 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#10 Postby John Jones » October 28th, 2010, 2:30 pm

Emma Woolgatherer wrote:Hello, John. I'm not sure that I entirely understand your question, but here goes.

Does there have to be a choice between stillness and noise, between the ineffable and the ... ahem ... effable? Surely, most people are impressed by all sorts of things, all sorts of attributes. If something impresses us, it might be because of its vastness or brilliance or intricacy or delicacy or vitality or stillness, or it might be, is more likely to be, a combination of several things. And when I say "people", I mean both adults and children. I think you rather insult children by suggesting that they are impressed only by show and size, and don't value things like stillness and silence and emptiness and smallness. At the same time, I, like plenty of other adults, have not grown tired of being amazed. Perhaps I don't need to be, but I still get a kick out of it, and I'm not ashamed to admit that.

I also don't understand quite what you mean by science "showing" us or "bringing" us a certain view, and I've not heard Richard Dawkins, or anyone else, for that matter, suggesting that science alone can "show" us the beauty of this universe. Dawkins's point, I thought, was that what we learn through science, through observation and experimentation and measurement and formulating hypotheses and testing them, doesn't spoil our appreciation of the universe, and can actually enhance it; that understanding how a rainbow was formed doesn't stop it from being marvellous, doesn't stop us enjoying its beauty, and can give us other things to appreciate about it as well. That doesn't mean that we cannot appreciate the universe, or at least the part of it that is accessible to our senses, just by looking (and listening and smelling and feeling and tasting), and simply letting our emotions respond. And as far as the inaccessible part of the universe is concerned, abandoning religious fantasies does not entail abandoning our imaginations. If anything, it allows us to give our imaginations free rein.

Emma
(cross-posted with Nick)



Scientists and Dawkins always use nature as an example of their own work - "look what our science shows you". This is objectionable.

Childish is as we perceive and construct it in todays culture - our gifts are big, colourful, noisy, trashy.

If we curb fantasies because they impoverish us because they aren't materially real, then colours and sounds, ghosts, birth/death experiences, archetypal structures like "mother", are all unreal fantasies.

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 22416
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#11 Postby Alan H » October 28th, 2010, 5:36 pm

John Jones wrote:Scientists and Dawkins always use nature as an example of their own work - "look what our science shows you". This is objectionable.
Dawkins is a scientist.

You say scientists "use nature as an example of their own work". What do you mean?

"look what our science shows you"
We can see nature without science, but science helps us understand why things are the way they are. Why do you find all this 'objectionable'?
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

User avatar
Gurdur
Posts: 610
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 5:00 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#12 Postby Gurdur » October 29th, 2010, 4:33 am

Fergus is objectionable. Only science can describe the marvellous bloom of the zebra tree. Most zebras like to be stimulated, but Fergus got arrested for doing that. Are we not all amazed? Are we yet tired of being amazed? Especially at the amount of bail demanded for Fergus.

User avatar
jaywhat
Posts: 15031
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 5:53 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#13 Postby jaywhat » October 29th, 2010, 5:59 am

'Only science can describe the marvellous bloom of the zebra tree.' ?? What does that mean?

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 22416
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#14 Postby Alan H » October 29th, 2010, 11:16 am

jaywhat wrote:'Only science can describe the marvellous bloom of the zebra tree.' ?? What does that mean?

:hilarity:
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

Maria Mac
Site Admin
Posts: 8835
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:34 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#15 Postby Maria Mac » October 29th, 2010, 11:39 am

jaywhat wrote:'Only science can describe the marvellous bloom of the zebra tree.' ?? What does that mean?

Think about it logically:

P1: zebra trees are blooming marvellous
P2: science is Richard Dawkins' own work (or so he claims)
P3: Richard Dawkins is sort of like a god to us
C: Therefore only science can describe the marvellous bloom of the zebra tree



Simples. :)

(As for Fergus, he's just a greedy banana-munching twunt.)

User avatar
jaywhat
Posts: 15031
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 5:53 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#16 Postby jaywhat » October 29th, 2010, 12:36 pm

Simples?

I like it, but is one not a bit old for that lingo? :D

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 22416
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#17 Postby Alan H » October 29th, 2010, 2:09 pm

jaywhat wrote:Simples?

I like it, but is one not a bit old for that lingo? :D
Oi! Do I make disparaging comments about your wife? Well?



Oh.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

User avatar
Lifelinking
Posts: 3248
Joined: July 4th, 2007, 11:56 am

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#18 Postby Lifelinking » October 29th, 2010, 4:01 pm

:pointlaugh:

What are the chances of that happening? (the whole thread I mean - not just the last post.. :wink: )

Image
"Who thinks the law has anything to do with justice? It's what we have because we can't have justice."
William McIlvanney

User avatar
animist
Posts: 6068
Joined: July 30th, 2010, 11:36 pm

Re: The pre-pubescent wonders of science

#19 Postby animist » October 29th, 2010, 4:11 pm

John Jones wrote:Many scientists, and of course Richard Dawkins, implore us to leave the fantasies of religion behind and instead observe the extent and beauty of this awesome universe, a universe that only science can show us.

But ... are we like children, easily impressed by show, and by bigger is better? Aren't we, as adults, tired of needing to be "amazed"?

What stirs me is not this one-sided childish view of nature, but the utter emptiness, the ineffable, that lies behind it. A big sky might reveal this better than my finger, but in both cases it isn't science that brings me this view.

What say you, humanists? Isn't it the ineffable that impresses because of its stillness? and not the noise and fireworks of impressive objects?

maybe - still or stir? I think you like to stir


Return to “John Jones”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest