Metacrock's Famous Gardener Parable

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Garden of the Gods

The point is to show the decision making process and what goes into belief or disbelief. Gardener parables are a tradition in philosophy of religion. I always think those like Flew's and Wisdom's are loaded against the believer.

The basic parable, although in many versions, goes like this: two men see a garden. The state of the garden makes one suspect there is a gardener, the other suspects there is none. In some versions they steak out the place, keep watch all night. They see no garden and the believer decides he's invisible and the other decides he's non existent. In Felw's version they put up electric wires, search lights, dogs, all kinds of things. No sign of a gardener. The believer decides he's oderless, colorless,invisible,intangible and doesn't do much. The sketic asks what's the difference in that and no gardener at all. Flew gives the moral: "the death of a fine brash hypothesis comes through a million qualifications." Of course the real import of it all is that there is' no God no reason to think there's a God, and all the rationalizations believers go through to explain away the lack of evidence are really just setting us up to ask "what's the difference in this God and no God at all?" Skepie's musings on his blog do't reflect this thousand qualifications angle.

Antony Flew, in an exchange called “Theology and Falsification” (on reserve in the WVC library), 
“Once upon a time two explorers came upon a clearing in the jungle. In the clearing were growing many flowers and many weeds. One explorer says, ‘Some gardener must tend this plot.’ The other disagrees, ‘There is no gardener.’ So they pitch their tents and set a watch. No gardener is ever seen. ‘But perhaps he is an invisible gardener.’ So they set up a barbed-wire fenced. They electrify it. They patrol with bloodhounds. (For they remember how H. G. Wells’s The Invisible Man could be both smelt and touched though he could not be seen.) But no shrieks ever suggest that some intruder has received a shock. No movements of the wire ever betray an invisible climber. The bloodhounds never give cry. Yet still the believer is not convinced. ‘But there is a gardener, invisible, intangible, insensitive to electric shocks, a gardener who has no scent and makes no sound, a gardener who comes secretly to look after the garden which he loves.’ At last the Sceptic despairs, ‘but what remains of your original assertion? Just how does what you call an invisible, intangible, eternally elusive gardener differ from an imaginary gardener or even from no gardener at all?[1]
Flew's point is about the verification principle. My argument has always been, and remains that he doesn't give the believer enough of a reason to believe. Real reasons that real people really have for believing are much stronger than that, even if they rare more personal.

Among the major gardener parables we find them by Hare, one by Wisdom, and maybe by Flew. I always thought that Hare's was more fair to the believer. IT does afford some reason why they would think there was a Gardener. But Wisdom's doesn't. So If it is loaded against the believer. In fact it makes his garden to all practical purposes seem unkempt which means it's irrational for them to even suppose there is a gardener.

My parable I wrote in 1999, while involved on my original message board in protracted discussions with a skeptic named "Mutaleto." Now here's my parable, quoting myself 1999:


Two men (or two women whatever) walking along see a garden out in the middle of nowhere. One finds a Tabaco pouch and observes that the garden is weeded and planted in rows. The other observes that the rows are not very stairght so it's really hard to tell, and that in many sections the weeds are overgrown. Observer A says "maybe someone planted this." B says "there's no data!


They scour the countryside and find no gardener. They camp out and wait and find no gardener. They examine all the plants carefully and find no trace of a gardener.


"B" goes home. "A" sits around and suddenly a man comes up, tells him he is the gardener and they talk about flowers for a long time. The man wont explain why the garden is so untended in sections and he wont explain why the rows are so uneven, but he assures "A" that he is the gardener and he does seem a prince of a fellow and knows all about flowers.


The next day "A" goes to B and says "there is a Gardener I met him." B says "three's no proof of that. IF there is a Gardener why didn't he explain his methods?" A says "I assume he has his reasons" B says "O, that old saw, all the gardener believers say that!"


The thing is A couldn't prove that he saw the gardener. The Gardener's presence wasn't detectable, he didn't alter the garden in any way that B could detect. He didn't' give An autographed picture, and let's also say that he didn't tell him where he lived and mysteriously vanished when A wasn't looking. But An is totally convinced that he did in fact see him. And the knowledge of gardening that was imparted to A did make him a superb gardener.


Now, is there really no reason for B to decide that no Gardner was seen? There is no logical proof that he was seen, but An is totally sincere Abu having seen him. Is it really so illogical to assume that A merely presupposed it? He cod have made it up or dreamed it, but is it really so illogical to think that he did actually see the gardener?


Now I think that, apart form believability of the witness, kicks it back into the realm of believability of the concepts and the sense that they make as concepts. The sense they make of the world. In other words, it offers one an opening into the inner logic in a way that wasn't there otherwise, but it doesn't demonstrate the truth claims in a logical argument.


Unless you are willing to believe that inner logic a parer can't have correspondence to the truth; but then what about the inner logic of your metaphysical assumptions? They have no inner logic, they are objective and proven right? But I think Kahn would suggest that even though scientific data is, but in as much as data must be interpreted and data does not give us metaphysical assumptions but is interpreted by them to the extent that science is culturally constructed, there is an inner logic to your metaphysical assumptions.


BE that as it may, the inner logic of belief can have openings across laminal space, into the shared world of unbelief. Perhaps not the kind that force assent, but the kind that allow access. After that point the struggle becomes one of explaining the concepts and demonstrating the inner consistency.

That's what I wrote in 1999. Looking back at it I find some interesting aspects I didn't notice back then. Example: I did notice that the skeptic's prattles are always loaded against the believer, the believer never has a real reason to think there's a gardener. That's why I had the believer find a Tabasco pouch, and see some evidence of straight rows and weeded garden, although that was supposed to be debatable. But then I had the believer actually meet the gardener because I felt that this is more in keeping with my religious experience; If feel that I did meet God in sense, rather I experience God's presence. Of course my experience was nowhere near as direct as "A's" experience of the Gardener. I left it as a subjective difference in the experiences of the two dialogue partners because that's they the way I think things really are.

What I now realize is that both men were trying to see the existence of a gardener through the state of the garden. This is really like the argument from design. The atheist is actually committing the same fallacy as the apologist who makes the design argument; noting having an undersigned universe to compare it to. In terms of the parable I should have the believer meet the gardener first, that should be what starts off the discussion. B would say "your friend says this is his garden, but look how messy it is, no one tends this ground."

In terms of Flew's moral that the fine hypothesis is killed by a thousand qualifications, that's a nice pithy quote. I don't think it applies to God arguments. While one does find that arguing the God arguments often causes one to sharpen one's perspective on the divine, the situation is hardly analogous.

The atheist's constant drum beat, the demand for proof, for verification, for something object that stacks up to science, is making the same kind of mistake about drawing conclusions from the world without a designed world to compare to, that the apolgist is in using the design argument. Empiricism is nothing more than an analysis of and conclusion from the state of the world. Belief is more private than that. Believers make claims that impinged upon the real world, but our reasons for holding them are often private affairs that don't translate well into empirical data. On the other hand, they are far stronger than Flew's neurotic believer who apparently is obsessed and has no declarable reason for belief.

But the best point I think that comes out of this mess is that the skeptic still looks to the shape of the world to que about his lack of belief. Sure, and the theodicy problem is nothing more than arraying against the existence of God based upon the state of the world, but rather than discussing design it discusses the state of pain and suffering in the world. So what these parables tell us is that the fine hypothesis God belief is always subjective and debatable, but the believer has his reasons.


[1] Anthony Flew "Theology and Falsification," 1950. PDEF 
by A FLEW - ‎Cited by 304 - ‎Related articles
THEOLOGY AND FALSIFICATION. From the ... ANTONY FLEW. Let us begin .... and dons would have no reason to feel uneasy about his presence in Oxford.
http://www.politik-salon.de/files/theory_of_falsification.pdf




Comments

im-skeptical said…
Skepie's musings on his blog do't reflect this thousand qualifications angle.
- Perhaps it would be worthwhile telling your readers where you get this from, so that they can have a basis judge my writing, rather than just taking your word for it. It is here: The Falsification Challenge. And I should point out that you completely missed the point of the article. The parable of Flew merely sets the stage for the discussion that follows it. The article is about whether atheists meet their own standards of basing their beliefs on verifiable (or falsifiable) evidence.

the believer never has a real reason to think there's a gardener. That's why I had the believer find a Tabasco pouch, and see some evidence of straight rows and weeded garden, although that was supposed to be debatable
- In your own version of the parable, you supplied extra evidence, that changes the situation. The point of Flew's parable was that there really isn't any objective evidence to support God belief. Now, you are contriving evidence that might support it. A tobacco pouch indicated that somebody was there. (Could it be the gardener,or perhaps someone else?) The garden being planted in rows is more conclusive, because it strongly indicates a gardener, even if the rows aren't straight. Of course, evidence is debatable, but in this case, it leans heavily toward the existence of a gardener. The thing is, nature doesn't do that, except perhaps in the most unusual circumstances. But people need to look at the evidence, and draw the most reasonable conclusion.

[Flew's parable] is loaded against the believer.
- No, it isn't. It's about drawing the best conclusion from the available evidence. Flew's parable mirrors what is observed in nature. Yours mirrors what is seen in agriculture. Each of them would lead to a different conclusion, based on the evidence. But you seem to feel that if the evidence isn't contrived to support your belief, the parable is stacked against you.

But then I had the believer actually meet the gardener because I felt that this is more in keeping with my religious experience
- And this is where you go completely off the rail, because the skeptic never gets to meet the gardener. This is not in keeping with the concept of verifiable or falsifiable evidence. If you want to keep your parable consistent with reality, you should have said the believer has a vision of meeting the gardener. The vision exists only in his own mind. It has no objective reality.

Belief is more private than that. Believers make claims that impinged upon the real world, but our reasons for holding them are often private affairs that don't translate well into empirical data.
- And now you are being more honest about your reason for believing, but at the same time, trying to make it sound as if you have objective evidence on your side, too. But that's false. The bit about the garden being planted inn rows is completely contrived. Why don't you just admit it? The REAL reason for your belief is entirely subjective and non-falsifiable. Objective evidence for your belief simply isn't there, or is better explained by naturalism.).
Joe Hinman said…
im-skeptical said...
Skepie's musings on his blog do't reflect this thousand qualifications angle.
- Perhaps it would be worthwhile telling your readers where you get this from, so that they can have a basis judge my writing, rather than just taking your word for it. It is here: The Falsification Challenge.

Hi Skepster, how/sit going dude?

I didn't get it from you it's from my blog in 2006, based upon something I wrote in 1999. I did stat to critique your thing but then decided to just run my old essay.




And I should point out that you completely missed the point of the article.

It sort of works that way when you don';t deal with the article, I decided not use your article because it's uninteresting.

The parable of Flew merely sets the stage for the discussion that follows it. The article is about whether atheists meet their own standards of basing their beliefs on verifiable (or falsifiable) evidence.

I could not care less weather they do or not

the believer never has a real reason to think there's a gardener. That's why I had the believer find a Tabasco pouch, and see some evidence of straight rows and weeded garden, although that was supposed to be debatable

In the way the parable is setup he does not. That's my point about it,it depends upon how the parable is set up, it proves nothing and it is unfair because we do have reasons for belief,in real life.

- In your own version of the parable, you supplied extra evidence, that changes the situation.

exactly my point Skepster. It depends upon how one set';s up the parable.Flew's version does not reflect life.


The point of Flew's parable was that there really isn't any objective evidence to support God belief.

I know that's why it's stupid and unfair,


Now, you are contriving evidence that might support it. A tobacco pouch indicated that somebody was there. (Could it be the gardener,or perhaps someone else?) The garden being planted in rows is more conclusive, because it strongly indicates a gardener, even if the rows aren't straight. Of course, evidence is debatable, but in this case, it leans heavily toward the existence of a gardener. The thing is, nature doesn't do that, except perhaps in the most unusual circumstances. But people need to look at the evidence, and draw the most reasonable conclusion.

That's because in real life I have evidence that might support it,

Flew's parable] is loaded against the believer.

- No, it isn't. It's about drawing the best conclusion from the available evidence. Flew's parable mirrors what is observed in nature. Yours mirrors what is seen in agriculture. Each of them would lead to a different conclusion, based on the evidence. But you seem to feel that if the evidence isn't contrived to support your belief, the parable is stacked against you.

you are merely employing one of the atheoid's most used tricks, trying to hide the evidence by insisting it's not evidence, that is what the parable is really about, it's about setting up the issue to assert that the deliverable has no good reason it's oblivious since you keep saying it,

Joe Hinman said…
But then I had the believer actually meet the gardener because I felt that this is more in keeping with my religious experience


- And this is where you go completely off the rail, because the skeptic never gets to meet the gardener. This is not in keeping with the concept of verifiable or falsifiable evidence. If you want to keep your parable consistent with reality, you should have said the believer has a vision of meeting the gardener. The vision exists only in his own mind. It has no objective reality.

I hate to break it to you old chum but it's not about the skeptic it's about the believer. why should we expect the skeptic to meet the gardener? he wouldn't be a sekptkc any more

Belief is more private than that. Believers make claims that impinged upon the real world, but our reasons for holding them are often private affairs that don't translate well into empirical data.


- And now you are being more honest about your reason for believing, but at the same time, trying to make it sound as if you have objective evidence on your side, too. But that's false. The bit about the garden being planted inn rows is completely contrived. Why don't you just admit it? The REAL reason for your belief is entirely subjective and non-falsifiable. Objective evidence for your belief simply isn't there, or is better explained by naturalism.).

The atheist fear of the subjective but real objectivity is impossible for humans. Being an atheist is personal vendetta against religious people and things that hurt one. Athiodism is never original.

you have to have a parable set up the situation for you because you can't cope with the evidence,


1/07/2019 09:01:00 AM Delete
im-skeptical said…
Hi Skepster, how/sit going dude?
- I'm doing just great. Ready (as always) to engage in yet another year of faith vs. logic and reason.

I didn't get it from you it's from my blog in 2006, based upon something I wrote in 1999. I did stat to critique your thing but then decided to just run my old essay.
- Uh OK. Aside from the fact that my most recent posting contains this parable from Flew, and you made comment there, and your current article explicitly mentions me and my blog in relation to this parable. So are we to believe that your earlier essay from 2006 mentions me?

It sort of works that way when you don';t deal with the article, I decided not use your article because it's uninteresting.
- You didn't deal with my article - but you couldn't resist talking about it anyway.

That's my point about it,it depends upon how the parable is set up, it proves nothing and it is unfair because we do have reasons for belief,in real life.
- As I said, the way Flew set up the parable is comparable to our observations of nature. The way you set it up is comparable to what we see with agriculture. Do you get the difference? In Flew's, there is no observation of a gardener, WHICH IS WHAT WE SEE IN NATURE. In yours, there is clearly a gardener, WHICH IS WHAT WE SEE WHEN WE LOOK AT A PLANTED FIELD.

exactly my point Skepster. It depends upon how one set';s up the parable.Flew's version does not reflect life.
- Flew's does reflect nature. Yours does not. Yours reflects something that is artificial.

I know that's why it's stupid and unfair
- You might as well call nature unfair. It isn't a parable about nature that you are complaining about. It is simply the fact that it wasn't contrived to support your belief.

That's because in real life I have evidence that might support it, Flew's parable] is loaded against the believer.
- In real life, you have your inner experience. You do not have objective evidence, because it doesn't exist. Yet you pretend that you do have this evidence. Please tell us what this evidence is. Forget about the parable. Just tell us what objective evidence there is for God that can't be better explained by natural means.

you are merely employing one of the atheoid's most used tricks, trying to hide the evidence by insisting it's not evidence
You are pretending to have evidence that you don't have. Show us the fields that are weeded and planted in rows that are part of nature. Show us anything in nature that clearly indicated God must have been responsible for it. You can't, because nature is fully explained without any reference to God. THAT's why people who look at the evidence are atheists.

But then I had the believer actually meet the gardener because I felt that this is more in keeping with my religious experience
- Exaxctly. Your belief is based on subjective feelings that are entirely in your mind.

The atheist fear of the subjective but real objectivity is impossible for humans. Being an atheist is personal vendetta against religious people and things that hurt one. Athiodism is never original.
- I don't fear the subjective. We all have subjective feelings. The difference between us is the I understand the difference, and you don't. I know that subjective does not equate to objective reality, and you can't separate reality from your inner feelings.
Joe Hinman said…
Blogger im-skeptical said...
Hi Skepster, how/sit going dude?
- I'm doing just great. Ready (as always) to engage in yet another year of faith vs. logic and reason.

Meta: How any times must I tell you circular reasoning is not logical?


I didn't get it from you it's from my blog in 2006, based upon something I wrote in 1999. I did stat to critique your thing but then decided to just run my old essay.


Skepster:- Uh OK. Aside from the fact that my most recent posting contains this parable from Flew, and you made comment there, and your current article explicitly mentions me and my blog in relation to this parable. So are we to believe that your earlier essay from 2006 mentions me?

Meta: I din't blame you for being confused but I did change it so you still need to read things.

It sort of works that way when you don't deal with the article, I decided not use your article because it's uninteresting.


Skepster:- You didn't deal with my article - but you couldn't resist talking about it anyway.

Meta: I don't talk about it. go look at this article again.


That's my point about it,it depends upon how the parable is set up, it proves nothing and it is unfair because we do have reasons for belief,in real life.


Skepster:- As I said, the way Flew set up the parable is comparable to our observations of nature. The way you set it up is comparable to what we see with agriculture. Do you get the difference? In Flew's, there is no observation of a gardener, WHICH IS WHAT WE SEE IN NATURE. In yours, there is clearly a gardener, WHICH IS WHAT WE SEE WHEN WE LOOK AT A PLANTED FIELD.

Metacrock: That's based upon a fallacy about how parables work.It's not a straight allegory.It's not about matching how things are it's about the inner logic of the example. Furrowed rows are just incidental. Argument from design is not based upon agriculture.


exactly my point Skepster. It depends upon how one set's up the parable.Flew's version does not reflect life.



Skepster:- Flew's does reflect nature. Yours does not. Yours reflects something that is artificial.

Metacrock: (1)There are better reasons to believe in God than argument from design.

(2)You are misunderstanding the nature of the parable because it's not about reflecting nature or not. That's not how the parable works. My criticism that it doesn't reflect life was not about nature but about my experience in life which is the basis of my belief.

(3)My version reflects what I see in nature,what you really mean to say is you think what you see in nature is the way it really is. That's because you really think you know everything as you accuse me of doing; you think everyone thinks that way because you do.

Metacrock: I know that's why it's stupid and unfair


Skepster:- You might as well call nature unfair. It isn't a parable about nature that you are complaining about. It is simply the fact that it wasn't contrived to support your belief.

Metacrock:That's because in real life I have evidence that might support it, Flew's parable] is loaded against the believer. It asserts that there is no proof That's it;s real function,It's real point is the thousand qualification quote.There is no exchange between the parable and life,not meant to be,That's not the point of it.


Joe Hinman said…
Skepster:- In real life, you have your inner experience. You do not have objective evidence, because it doesn't exist.

Metacrock: There is no right or wrong in evidence it's all a matter of the mind observing the evidence, and minds are always subjective. There is no objective evidence as soon it becomes evidence the mind that makes it evidence is making a subjective assessment.

Skepster:Yet you pretend that you do have this evidence. Please tell us what this evidence is. Forget about the parable. Just tell us what objective evidence there is for God that can't be better explained by natural means.

Metacrock:I never objective anything,I only claim inter-subjective and less subjective. Read my book you will see the strongest God evidence the closet to scientific objectivity there is, I've kicked your ass every time we talk arguments. That guy that common who knew something about quantum physics he thought you were full of it,He was totally supportive of me,

you are merely employing one of the atheoid's most used tricks, trying to hide the evidence by insisting it's not evidence


Skepster:You are pretending to have evidence that you don't have. Show us the fields that are weeded and planted in rows that are part of nature. Show us anything in nature that clearly indicated God must have been responsible for it. You can't, because nature is fully explained without any reference to God. THAT's why people who look at the evidence are atheists.


Metacrock: Skep every time you try to quote the parable with a literal look at nature you show that you don't understand the parable. It is not about weather or not nature looks designed. My God arguments do not die the death of a thousand qualifications that's the point.


Metacrock:But then I had the believer actually meet the gardener because I felt that this is more in keeping with my religious experience

Skepster:- Exaxctly. Your belief is based on subjective feelings that are entirely in your mind.


Meta so is your disbelief.


Metacrock:The atheist fear of the subjective but real objectivity is impossible for humans. Being an atheist is personal vendetta against religious people and things that hurt one. Athiodism is never original.


Skepster:- I don't fear the subjective. We all have subjective feelings. The difference between us is the I understand the difference, and you don't. I know that subjective does not equate to objective reality, and you can't separate reality from your inner feelings.

Metacrock:


O yes you do fear it,you are note even honest with yourself, you are a nkave chilkd if you think objective = realty, Human's are never objective. Facts are neutral they may be objective but they don't take sides. When we make judgement that entail drawing conclusion from facts we are not being objective,never.

The facts from which we draw conclusion in fine tuning argument are objective facts,the decisions that they prove God or don't prove God are both subjective, there is no objective evaluation.
im-skeptical said…
That's based upon a fallacy about how parables work.It's not a straight allegory.It's not about matching how things are it's about the inner logic of the example. Furrowed rows are just incidental. Argument from design is not based upon agriculture.
- So now you're claiming that I don't know how parables work? Come on, Joe. This is a parable to illustrate a simple point - that religionists do not base their belief on observable evidence. It is not a biblical allegory with some supposed hidden meaning. It was written by an atheist philosopher to describe the difference between atheistic belief and theistic belief. And the furrowed rows og your own version are more than just incidental. You put them there because you thought it was a better way to represent the evidence. You thought it was unfair that Flew didn't include something like that.

(1)There are better reasons to believe in God than argument from design.
- Perhaps. But you are harping about this particular argument. The only real reason I have heard from you is your "mystical experience". The problem with that, as I have pointed out, is that it is completely in your mind. It is not objective evidence.

(2)You are misunderstanding the nature of the parable because it's not about reflecting nature or not. That's not how the parable works. My criticism that it doesn't reflect life was not about nature but about my experience in life which is the basis of my belief.
- You can try to get away with telling me I don't understand biblical parables because I don't see the hidden meaning in them. But there is no hidden meaning here. I understand it perfectly well. Flew's parable is about observable evidence, not about the feelings you have that you find so convincing.

(3)My version reflects what I see in nature,what you really mean to say is you think what you see in nature is the way it really is. That's because you really think you know everything as you accuse me of doing; you think everyone thinks that way because you do.
- Your version reflects what you IMAGINE you see. You have these feelings that make you believe. Then everything you see around you in the world is interpreted through the lens of belief. There are no furrowed fields, except when people create them. But you are telling me that this is what you see in nature. That's bullshit.

More later.
Joe Hinman said…

Blogger im-skeptical said...
That's based upon a fallacy about how parables work.It's not a straight allegory.It's not about matching how things are it's about the inner logic of the example. Furrowed rows are just incidental. Argument from design is not based upon agriculture.


- So now you're claiming that I don't know how parables work? Come on, Joe. This is a parable to illustrate a simple point - that religionists do not base their belief on observable evidence.

No that is not the point he's makimng. That is a childish and self-serving rendition.It;s far more important to talk about the qualification of an hypothesis that's the real issue He could have used an example about anything. He is not just trying to dig at religion. Here is Flew's own explanation:

"In this parable we can see how what starts as an assertion, that something exists or that there
is some analogy between certain complexes of phenomena, may be reduced step by step to an
altogether different status, to an expression perhaps of a ‘picture preference’. The Sceptic says there 2
is no gardener. The Believer says there is a gardener (but invisible, etc.). One man talks about sexual
behaviour. Another man prefers to talk of Aphrodite (but knows that there is not really a superhuman
person additional to, and somehow responsible for, all sexual phenomena). The process of 3
qualification may be checked at any point before the original assertion is completely withdrawn and
something of that first assertion will remain (Tautology). Mr. Wells’s invisible man could not,
admittedly, be seen, but in all other respects he was a man like the rest of us. But though the process
of qualification may be, and of course usually is, checked in time, it is not always judiciously so
halted. Someone may dissipate his assertion completely without noticing that he has done so. A fine
brash hypothesis may thus be killed by inches, the death by a thousand qualifications"




Joe Hinman said…
This is a parable to illustrate a simple point - that religionists do not base their belief on observable evidence. It is not a biblical allegory with some supposed hidden meaning. It was written by an atheist philosopher to describe the difference between atheistic belief and theistic belief. And the furrowed rows og your own version are more than just incidental. You put them there because you thought it was a better way to represent the evidence. You thought it was unfair that Flew didn't include something like that.

Christians are so very stupid aren't they dumb ass? of course I'm so stupid I read Flew's actual article about this parable and I'm looking at what he says it means you are so brilliant all you can see in it is your own little temper tantrum against grandma or whoever ruined you on religious belief.

you make these idiotic assumptions like I've heard of Flew it took your great magnificent knowledge to introduce me to the Gardner parable when it's ensconced in every intro philosophy of religion book since time in memorial. I first heard of it in 1975. Here I've read the actual article it never even accrued to you to read it. He says the point is the diminishing hypothesis
Joe Hinman said…
(1)There are better reasons to believe in God than argument from design.

- Perhaps. But you are harping about this particular argument. The only real reason I have heard from you is your "mystical experience". The problem with that, as I have pointed out, is that it is completely in your mind. It is not objective evidence.

You have such a poor memory,I kicked your ass on cosmological argument which is where the QM stuff comes in.Also, the argumemt from Transcendental signified, on that one you ran away and let Pixie do most of it, but i did kick your ass on it.

(2)You are misunderstanding the nature of the parable because it's not about reflecting nature or not. That's not how the parable works. My criticism that it doesn't reflect life was not about nature but about my experience in life which is the basis of my belief.


- You can try to get away with telling me I don't understand biblical parables because I don't see the hidden meaning in them. But there is no hidden meaning here. I understand it perfectly well. Flew's parable is about observable evidence, not about the feelings you have that you find so convincing.

no this one is hidden in the open. It's just that you don't know much about how logic works. That's why your arguments are always circular. It is simple the point is not the way nature looks it is the basic nature of re qualifying the hypothesis That is what Flew said it is about

(3)My version reflects what I see in nature,what you really mean to say is you think what you see in nature is the way it really is. That's because you really think you know everything as you accuse me of doing; you think everyone thinks that way because you do.


- Your version reflects what you IMAGINE you see.

Your version reflects what you IMAGINE you see.

You have these feelings that make you believe. Then everything you see around you in the world is interpreted through the lens of belief.

You have feelings of needing to be important and be seen as smart and science gives you that feeling,



There are no furrowed fields, except when people create them. But you are telling me that this is what you see in nature. That's bullshit.

furrowed fields are my parable they are allegorical i already told you that, you see everything literally.



1/09/2019 09:04:00 AM Delete
im-skeptical said…
No that is not the point he's making. That is a childish and self-serving rendition.It;s far more important to talk about the qualification of an hypothesis that's the real issue He could have used an example about anything. He is not just trying to dig at religion.
- Your understanding is incredibly shallow. He's talking first about falsification. The belief that is not based on evidence is a mere assertion. As such, it can't be directly falsified. Evidence is the very basis of falsification. His discussion about qualifications is describing how the assertion-based hypothesis must be gradually modified to fit known facts, until those qualifications eventually become too cumbersome to sustain the hypothesis. Consider the progression of qualifications:
A. Someone tends the garden. (But we don't actually see someone).
B. The gardener must be invisible. (But we still don't detect someone crossing the boundary).
C. The gardener must be intangible. (So at this point, there is no way to verify his or falsify presence on the basis of evidence).
By the process of qualification, the hypothesis becomes indistinguishable from nothing at all. But it is the lack of evidence that allows one to engage in this process of qualification in the first place.


You have such a poor memory,I kicked your ass on cosmological argument which is where the QM stuff comes in.Also, the argumemt from Transcendental signified, on that one you ran away and let Pixie do most of it, but i did kick your ass on it.
- Only in your deluded mind have you ever "kicked my ass". The fact is that you usually don't even understand that issues that are raised. Just like this one. You are far too shallow to understand what Flew is saying with his parable.


no this one is hidden in the open. It's just that you don't know much about how logic works. That's why your arguments are always circular. It is simple the point is not the way nature looks it is the basic nature of re qualifying the hypothesis That is what Flew said it is about
- You don't even know what you're saying. "the basic nature of re qualifying the hypothesis" Joe, this is fundamentally about making assertions without evidence.


Your version reflects what you IMAGINE you see.
- I asked you to show me those furrowed rows made by nature. Of course you can't produce any such evidence.


You have feelings of needing to be important and be seen as smart and science gives you that feeling
- The feeling I have is that you are deluded. I can't understand how you can be so impervious to evidence and logic.


furrowed fields are my parable they are allegorical i already told you that, you see everything literally.
- To you, allegory is a way to completely change the meaning of what something says. Allegory is a metaphorical way of telling a story. The point is that it tells a story by making an illustration. It is not intended to obscure the point of the story, but to illustrate it. But for you, it becomes part of that qualification process - just another step in the degradation of your claims to the point that they become meaningless. When it is pointed out that your story bears no relationship to reality, you say "it's just allegory". But that doesn't mean there should no way to relate it to something real, which is the point of the thing. See the Wikipedia article on allegory:
"As a literary device, an allegory is a metaphor in which a character, place or event is used to deliver a broader message about real-world issues and occurrences. Allegory has occurred widely throughout history in all forms of art, largely because it can readily illustrate or convey complex ideas and concepts in ways that are comprehensible or striking to its viewers, readers, or listeners."

Joe Hinman said…

Blogger im-skeptical said...
No that is not the point he's making. That is a childish and self-serving rendition.It;s far more important to talk about the qualification of an hypothesis that's the real issue He could have used an example about anything. He is not just trying to dig at religion.


- Your understanding is incredibly shallow. He's talking first about falsification.

First of little undergraduate, I never even came close to hinting that it.s not about falsification. you are so enamored of yourself for knowing that that you can't get that it's obvious it's too basic to point out, but nothing I said contradicts it, stupid,



The belief that is not based on evidence is a mere assertion. As such, it can't be directly falsified. Evidence is the very basis of falsification. His discussion about qualifications is describing how the assertion-based hypothesis must be gradually modified to fit known facts, until those qualifications eventually become too cumbersome to sustain the hypothesis.

That's what I said Scotous, try reading English,that can work with any example about anything,that's why I said it's not about how nature appears to us It's irrelevant to my criticism which was based upon what he takes as evidence not upon his notions of the necessity of evidence for falsification try to follow the words.


Consider the progression of qualifications:
A. Someone tends the garden. (But we don't actually see someone).
B. The gardener must be invisible. (But we still don't detect someone crossing the boundary).
C. The gardener must be intangible. (So at this point, there is no way to verify his or falsify presence on the basis of evidence).
By the process of qualification, the hypothesis becomes indistinguishable from nothing at all. But it is the lack of evidence that allows one to engage in this process of qualification in the first place.

That's right as far as it goes, but it doesn't apply to my use of apologetically evidence, I have evidence of garden tending,(remember that need not be literally about nature)


You have such a poor memory,I kicked your ass on cosmological argument which is where the QM stuff comes in.Also, the argumemt from Transcendental signified, on that one you ran away and let Pixie do most of it, but i did kick your ass on it.

- Only in your deluded mind have you ever "kicked my ass". The fact is that you usually don't even understand that issues that are raised. Just like this one. You are far too shallow to understand what Flew is saying with his parable.

everyone knows that i wrong: evidence when Mark Tester intervened into our squabble on Qm theory he clearly thought I knew something and you did not.

https://religiousapriori.blogspot.com/2018/09/the-truth-of-nothing-emerges.html


Joe Hinman said…
no this one is hidden in the open. It's just that you don't know much about how logic works. That's why your arguments are always circular. It is simple the point is not the way nature looks it is the basic nature of re qualifying the hypothesis That is what Flew said it is about


- You don't even know what you're saying. "the basic nature of re qualifying the hypothesis" Joe, this is fundamentally about making assertions without evidence.

you are so focused on your mythology about being better than me you are not even paying attention,you yourself said it's bout qualifying you said it above in this post, "His discussion about qualifications is describing how the assertion-based hypothesis must be gradually modified to fit known facts, until those qualifications eventually become too cumbersome to sustain the hypothesis." that's exactly what I just said: my phrase "re qualifying the hypothesis" = your:the assertion-based hypothesis must be gradually modified to fit known facts


Your version reflects what you IMAGINE you see.


- I asked you to show me those furrowed rows made by nature. Of course you can't produce any such evidence.

Fine tuning target levels


You have feelings of needing to be important and be seen as smart and science gives you that feeling

- The feeling I have is that you are deluded. I can't understand how you can be so impervious to evidence and logic.

we all have those feelings,why are you afraid to own up?


furrowed fields are my parable they are allegorical i already told you that, you see everything literally.


- To you, allegory is a way to completely change the meaning of what something says.

you know nothing of my knowledge of a allegory. I am willing to bet your ignorance of literature is profound,


Allegory is a metaphorical way of telling a story. The point is that it tells a story by making an illustration. It is not intended to obscure the point of the story, but to illustrate it. But for you, it becomes part of that qualification process - just another step in the degradation of your claims to the point that they become meaningless.

you are going to have to show the process as it pertains to my arguments, demonstrate with chapter and verse,

The issue Flew raises is not that Christianity is falsified, it's that it can't be falsified, that is not a help to the apologist. If the apologist really get's it She needs to say that Christianity can be falsified, if it can't be then it can't be proven. It's good for a God argument that it can be can be falsified. But it;s not not about falsifying God it's about falsifying arguments for God.



When it is pointed out that your story bears no relationship to reality, you say "it's just allegory". But that doesn't mean there should no way to relate it to something real, which is the point of the thing.

When do I ever argue from allegory? That is a problem someone might do but you cna't show i do it.


See the Wikipedia article on allegory:
"As a literary device, an allegory is a metaphor in which a character, place or event is used to deliver a broader message about real-world issues and occurrences. Allegory has occurred widely throughout history in all forms of art, largely because it can readily illustrate or convey complex ideas and concepts in ways that are comprehensible or striking to its viewers, readers, or listeners."

I have 26 hours of literature at the PhD. level

im-skeptical said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
im-skeptical said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
im-skeptical said…
First of little undergraduate, I never even came close to hinting that it.s not about falsification. you are so enamored of yourself for knowing that that you can't get that it's obvious it's too basic to point out, but nothing I said contradicts it, stupid
- Joe, when I said "This is a parable to illustrate a simple point - that religionists do not base their belief on observable evidence", you strongly disagreed. So I went on to explain how falsification is ALL ABOUT evidence. You still can't make the connection, so you attack with your usual ad hominems that substitute for real discussion.

That's what I said Scotous, try reading English,that can work with any example about anything,that's why I said it's not about how nature appears to us It's irrelevant to my criticism which was based upon what he takes as evidence not upon his notions of the necessity of evidence for falsification try to follow the words
- You clearly don't even know what evidence is. It is what we objectively observe. We DO NOT observe furrowed and weeded rows in nature. If you think we do, it is only because you view everything through the lens of your belief. But you can't show me anything like that, because it doesn't happen in nature. This IS NOT objective evidence.

That's right as far as it goes, but it doesn't apply to my use of apologetically evidence, I have evidence of garden tending,(remember that need not be literally about nature)
- Of course it's right. This is what Flew is saying. And you don't get it. You don't understand what Flew is telling us. Your so-called "evidence" is in the form of "allegory", which you seem to think is a way for you to make any assertion you like without evidence, and still claim that it has some kid of value in an argument. That's bullshit.

everyone knows that i wrong: evidence when Mark Tester intervened into our squabble on Qm theory he clearly thought I knew something and you did not..
- That whole discussion was completely over your head. You can't even state cogently what we disagreed about. Here's a hint for you: it wasn't about quantum mechanics. It was only philosophical points, like "what is the real vacuum?" And when he said that quantum particles were not detectable, he referred to a statement in Wikipedia, but everyone who knows anything about physics understands that NO subatomic particles (virtual ot otherwise) are directly detectable. We know they exist because of the interactions they have with other things. This is how we "detect" them. But you, in your ignorance, hear him say something like that and you pounce on it, thinking I have been proven wrong. You are a total ignoramus on scientific topics, and as I have said many times, you would do well to keep your mouth shut on topics that you know nothing about.

you are so focused on your mythology about being better than me you are not even paying attention,you yourself said it's bout qualifying you said it above in this post
- You don't understand how evidence is at the heart of the issue. That's what the garden represented in the parable.

Fine tuning target levels
That's a claim - not an observation. There is no fine tuning in nature.

we all have those feelings,why are you afraid to own up?
- I have feelings too. I don't deny it, but unlike you, I know the difference between objective evidence and subjective feelings.

I have 26 hours of literature at the PhD. level
- It doesn't take a PhD to know what an allegory is. But clearly you don't.
Joe Hinman said…
JoeThat's what I said Scotous, try reading English,that can work with any example about anything,that's why I said it's not about how nature appears to us It's irrelevant to my criticism which was based upon what he takes as evidence not upon his notions of the necessity of evidence for falsification try to follow the words



Skepster- You clearly don't even know what evidence is. It is what we objectively observe. We DO NOT observe furrowed and weeded rows in nature. If you think we do, it is only because you view everything through the lens of your belief. But you can't show me anything like that, because it doesn't happen in nature. This IS NOT objective evidence.

Just pathetic the way this guy cannot understand an argument. I say the parable is not about how nature looks and he says there are no t furrowed fields. This is totally irrelevant,he has failed to answer my argument.

he;s stuck on the furrowed field thing because it challenges his worldview most of all sine it is entirely based upon the idea of having one bit of clear evidence,so if there is one bit tiny little bit of evidence it is the same as proving God! anything that even hints that there might be a God is threatening the same as proving it yet they would deny the evidence no matter how devastating it is. They are treated by the least but they will deny any.



JoeThat's right as far as it goes, but it doesn't apply to my use of apologetically evidence, I have evidence of garden tending,(remember that need not be literally about nature)



- Of course it's right. This is what Flew is saying. And you don't get it. You don't understand what Flew is telling us. Your so-called "evidence" is in the form of "allegory", which you seem to think is a way for you to make any assertion you like without evidence, and still claim that it has some kid of value in an argument. That's bullshit.

where do you get the idea that my evince is allegory? that's really stud,I said my parable is allegory but my parable is not evidence, you don't know what evidence is,



Joe Hinman said…
Joeeveryone knows that i wrong: evidence when Mark Tester intervened into our squabble on Qm theory he clearly thought I knew something and you did not..


Skepster- That whole discussion was completely over your head. You can't even state cogently what we disagreed about.

that's just is proven by the fact that Tester was on my side,


Here's a hint for you: it wasn't about quantum mechanics. It was only philosophical points, like "what is the real vacuum?" And when he said that quantum particles were not detectable, he referred to a statement in Wikipedia, but everyone who knows anything about physics understands that NO subatomic particles (virtual ot otherwise) are directly detectable. We know they exist because of the interactions they have with other things. This is how we "detect" them. But you, in your ignorance, hear him say something like that and you pounce on it, thinking I have been proven wrong. You are a total ignoramus on scientific topics, and as I have said many times, you would do well to keep your mouth shut on topics that you know nothing about.

that guy who you cow towed to because thought he supported you thought I was roister, You thought he knew science, he thought I was right, use your brain for once asshole.

90% of what you say is based upon the most bigoted hateful assumption about religious people and the most narrowed refusal to think.



Joe Hinman said…
And when he said that quantum particles were not detectable, he referred to a statement in Wikipedia, but everyone who knows anything about physics understands that NO subatomic particles (virtual to otherwise) are directly detectable.

that has nothing to do with my argent, I never argued otherwise.


We know they exist because of the interactions they have with other things.

You are totally threatened by any kind of philosophical thought. you have no idea how we know they exist but science says it so it dare not be questioned. you are scared to death to question since


This is how we "detect" them. But you, in your ignorance, hear him say something like that and you pounce on it, thinking I have been proven wrong.

hail omniscience,hail science all good all powerful all knowing!


You are a total ignoramus on scientific topics, and as I have said many times, you would do well to keep your mouth shut on topics that you know nothing about.

you are a fascist, totally opposed to actual thinking, ignore, cranky, slow witted, Puerile imperceptive,opaque.
im-skeptical said…
he;s stuck on the furrowed field thing because it challenges his worldview most of all sine it is entirely based upon the idea of having one bit of clear evidence
- I'm stuck on the fact that you say Flew's parable is unfair because it doesn't include your furrowed fields. But Flew's parable represents the evidence we see in nature, not the evidence that you wish we could see, or the "evidence" that exists in your mind. Sure, if there were such evidence, then we might conclude that God exists, but the point is that we don't see evidence like that. It's the whole point of HIS parable that believers have to keep adding qualifications to justify their hypothesis, rather than just believing what the evidence actually tells them.

that's really stud,I said my parable is allegory but my parable is not evidence, you don't know what evidence is
- Read your own words in the above comment.

that's just is proven by the fact that Tester was on my side
- I don't deny he's on your side. But it proves nothing. And you still don't understand the discussion.

90% of what you say is based upon the most bigoted hateful assumption about religious people and the most narrowed refusal to think.
- 99% of what you say about me is based on your own hatred and ignorance, including this statement.

You are totally threatened by any kind of philosophical thought. you have no idea how we know they exist but science says it so it dare not be questioned. you are scared to death to question since
- Joe, I don't just go to google and quote things I don't understand, like you do. I studied quantum physics.

hail omniscience,hail science all good all powerful all knowing!
- It must be bewildering for you, living in a world that you just don't understand, and relying on a non-existent God to give you comfort. My own position is based on epistemology. Solid evidence is better than feelings. A method for verifying the things we believe gives us some assurance that those beliefs are better founded than your evidence-free assertions of God.

you are a fascist, totally opposed to actual thinking, ignore, cranky, slow witted, Puerile imperceptive,opaque.
- By "actual thinking" you mean belief without evidence or belief based on private feelings. Yes, I am opposed to that. Science works, bitches.
Joe Hinman said…
By "actual thinking" you mean belief without evidence or belief based on private feelings. Yes, I am opposed to that. Science works, bitches.

200 studies is evidence dumb ass

fine tuning is evidence dumb ass

the universes needing a cause is evidence dumb ass

you know nothing about the issues involved upi have no idea what it means to say sconce works, you are just spouting slogans,
Joe Hinman said…
no one has responded so I assize no one cares
im-skeptical said…
Joe, you don't understand the difference between evidence and argument. Evidence is what we observe. It consists of objective facts, measurements, data, etc. Argument is the way we interpret the observable evidence. Arguments can be wrong. Facts in evidence are not in dispute.

200 studies is evidence dumb ass
- The studies present data, such as a correlation between religious or spiritual mindsets and various other life events. That's the evidence. You interpret this as "God did it." That's your argument. The evidence is not in dispute. Your argument is. There are better natural explanations. Arguments are disputable - evidence is not.

fine tuning is evidence dumb ass
- The various physical constants have measured or calculated values that are not in dispute. That's the evidence. You (and other theists) make the argument that they are fine-tuned (with the implication of God as the tuning agent). That's your argument. Naturalists (including most physicists) disagree with that. Arguments are disputable - evidence is not.

the universes needing a cause is evidence dumb ass
- There is no evidence involved in this assertion. The prevalent cosmological theory is that the universe begins with a quantum event. But quantum events happen randomly, without a specific cause. If that's true, the universe does not need a cause. But that's disputable. It's not evidence. You should learn the difference.


you know nothing about the issues involved upi have no idea what it means to say sconce works, you are just spouting slogans
- "God did it" is the oldest slogan of them all. But science does give us much better explanations, no matter how much you hate it.

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