You welcome Jay
What those around us think is true of us is enormously important in determining what we ourselves think is true.
It’s obvious that if one born in a religious society he will grow religious, and then he have to make commitment – go church or mosque ,pray , read bible or quran- , And trifling commitments can lead to extraordinary further behavior.
Once an active commitment is made, then, self-image is squeezed from both sides by consistency pressures. From the inside, there is a pressure to bring self-image into line with action. From the outside, there is a sneakier pressure—a tendency to adjust this image according to the way others perceive him. And because others see him as believing in what he is doing or saying (even when he has little choice), he will once again experience a pull to bring self-image into line with what he do or say.
If God did exist as the object of people's religious perceptions, then those religious perceptions would be like sight.
Remove someone's eyes (ouch!) and they no longer have sight. That does not disprove the existence of things to be seen.
The religious mental model is like a computer simulation. I can play Mech Warrior but I would really be deluded if I thought I could actually steal a Madcat & go rampaging through a city. It's only software which is the product of the all programmers & artists imaginations. On one level I find this fact extremely disappointing but it's probably for the better.
100% is close enough for me. Why allow any credence to stories made up by ancient peoples trying to explain natural phenomena? "Well, science doesn't know everything." Okay, but it certainly gets closer to reality than "just-so" stories. Science at least checks out its explanations. And the fairytale fall-back position doesn't appeal to me in the least.
Here's the closest I come to the idea that a God of some sort might exist:
The "mathematical universe" idea is that our universe is composed of mathematics. That is, our universe is a piece of mathematics. The cosmologist Max Tegmark wrote about this idea in Our Mathematical Universe.
In this theory, we are conscious mathematical subsystems of the universe. The universe is "real" because it's a complicated enough piece of mathematics to have conscious subsystems.
According to this theory, any mathematics that fulfills some conditions is real. It's a kind of Platonism.
So there would be an infinite mathematical reality, of which our universe is a sub-theory. Our universe is the working out of some mathematical assumptions, which include the laws of physics. It's like a long derivation, or plotting values given for a differential equation, or running a computer program.
Now, does our universe require something to "run" it? Does there have to be Something to "think" all that mathematics?
I don't say that Something must be conscious. Nor do I know if a Something is required to "run" the universe.
It's a deep question. But perhaps, a question for which there is a genuine non handwaving answer.
What is the difference between writing down the laws of physics and initial conditions for our universe, and our universe?
To me, it's just plain obvious!
I don't believe you can prove a negative, which keeps me from saying !00%, but I'll say that I don't have the patience to hold down the 9 button if I typed this 99.999...% in a complete form.
Mathematical Universe.... Hmm... You are either 1 over 0, or you don't exist. Hence if you don't exist there isn't any of you, and you are then at best a figment of the imagination, a non-entity. You can't escape the mathematical Universe or exist outside it. The argument of such is like saying my god exists outside of existence and is not in existence... It's incoherent self-refutation. Also you are, I think, conflating Observable Universe with the term Universe. These have entirely different meanings. The Universe according to the Oxford dictionary is defined as "Everything that exists". It is synonymous with the term "Existence", or "Reality".. These are all terms for the same thing in which is a Universal Set of all Sets. The Observable, whether it's a simulation, an illusion, or as is, is a subset of Existence. It's relevancy depends on the context.. As in is it just a figment of the imagination, or real?
Now Ted, you say you can't prove a negative, but you can disprove it if it's a self-refuting concept.. Self-refutations are 100% certain, and so I need not argue for needing a 99% statement.
Lastly, as I pointed out earlier regarding the existential paradox, or when you move the god goal post as far as you can, it's either all or nothing.. As in it is entirely moot at best due to calling Existence itself as GOD would mean that everything and everyone is GOD while the latter statement would make everything everyone not.. Logically at the furthest extremes, it is either all or nothing.. Hence take your pick.
Please elaborate so we can understand which part you are confused about.. Perhaps then we can elaborate as well :)
Stating it's all or nothing really isn't complicated at all.. Which part of that was complicated? All you need to know is the definition of existence, and what the implications are when you do or don't call Existence god. Logically that is the furthest you can move the goal post, and I did it to demonstrate the point of why it really is either all or nothing at the end of the day..
Yes we can simply say we believe or not, but that doesn't establish anything in regards to the question vs when you take it and move the goal posts to the furthest extremes to where you can see the entire playing field.. That's Atheism to Pantheism, as in the two furthest extremes regarding the concept of GOD.
And I think it's agreeable that once you state that Existence itself is GOD, it becomes entirely moot as that by definition makes everyone and everything god. I would also think it would be agreeable that once you say Existence is not, there is no god or gods by definition.. This is an existential paradox and the consequences by definition literally make it all or nothing. How is that complicated?
This paradox is the very reason I question and refute the concept of GOD entirely.
To simplify... You have a soccer field with two goals on the furthest possible ends of the field. This being (No GOD - Atheism), and Existence itself as GOD (Pantheism) where everything and everyone is god by definition. Here everyone else is just people kicking the ball around aiming for their own imaginary goal posts somewhere on the field while ignoring the two farthest goal posts on the ends of the field (Atheism / Pantheism).
Literally, it's all or nothing where there is no god or gods, or that everything and everyone is god, a god, or gods. Quite literally this subject is entirely moot. The concept of god is meaningless at the end of the day.
I remember asking a Christian when I was a Pantheist:
What is GOD without Existence?
And that is when I realized the concept of GOD is entirely meaningless. That is when I realized the paradox in which effectively makes it all or nothing.. Atheism is thus the most logical stance to take.
You are right, there is no sense in making it so complicated. But (I might have written this earlier), at least I am one-hundred-and-ten-percent sure that there is no god. Why in the universe would anybody allow the slightest bit of doubt or say they are only 99.999...% sure there is no god?????