Naturalism is the understanding that there is a single, natural world as shown by science, and that we are completely included in it. - Thomas W Clark

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Death and Dying

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by amer chohan Feb 26, 2013. 21 Replies

Must See TV (O.K. Youtube)

Started by J J. Last reply by Alice May 8, 2012. 2 Replies

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Comment by Joan Denoo on May 7, 2012 at 12:50am

Who said everything is relative? 

“Everything is relative in this world, where change alone endures.” 
― Leon Trotsky

Comment by Alice on May 6, 2012 at 9:17pm

LOL - you mean like having an ant farm?  :)

The thing is that space is so inhospitable and we are perfectly evolved to live  on earth - I really lack confidence that we can last very long elsewhere - all depends on the technology.  I also think that most aliens are smaller than bacteria - it takes a certain type of place to produce large complex life like we have here.

And things do end in the end - in a very long time - 1 with 99 zeros - which is an unimaginable amount of time - the entire universe will die a heat death - which means that all the energy will be used up and everything will simply stop moving - and therefore time will cease to exist - because time is relative to movement. 

Comment by Tabitha McCoy on May 6, 2012 at 8:58am

I really like this. I like how I can get up and look around, knowing that in this amazingly beautiful universe, and how we are so small--not only are we made of stardust, but we are just a little speck. For all we know we could be some alien creatures project!

Comment by Joan Denoo on May 6, 2012 at 1:16am

It is so easy to get caught up in the jargon of philosophy or science and for me, the energy and elements and forces of nature exist, everything changes and nothing ends, at least that is what I learned in some long ago class (remember, I am 76 and things get a little hazy). But the concept of being made up of "star stuff" Sagan's term, or "star dust", Tyson's term, we all have common components, we evolved through eons of time, we co-exist with many different living forms, life gives some of us the senses that make it possible to see, hear, taste, smell, feel, and emote and all these things make it possible to participate in life. That is why I think I am created. Participation, not defined by some unseeable, unknowable god, but defined by my internal drives. Just as the robin is born, wakes up and sings, looks for food, eats, reproduces, and dies to return to the earth and ultimately to star dust. Now, how could life be any sweeter than that!!!

Comment by Mike Layfield on May 6, 2012 at 12:42am

I think I do know what you mean. There is huge psychological benefit in feeling at home in the universe. And the causal web unfolding in spacetime certainly does unify everything including us in a nontrivial way.

Comment by Alice on May 5, 2012 at 10:33pm

Mike - I think there is some benefit from that feeling you get when thinking about the interconnectedness of all things in a causal web of time and space....  do you know what I mean?

Comment by Mike Layfield on May 5, 2012 at 10:12am

Hi Tabitha. The statement that 'we are all one' sounds like what Daniel Dennett would call a "deepity": a statement which is true in the most trivial sense, but false in a profound sense. Yes, we (you, me, slime molds, washing machines, etc) are all made of the heavy elements created by exploding stars. But no we are not technically unified except in the most trivial sense.

Comment by Alice on May 4, 2012 at 10:56pm

Tabitha - I don't think it is that simple - the way that Stephen Hawkins explains it (I think) is that virtual quantum particles are sucked into existence through gravity which was like a wave - I'm not sure if we know yet if this process is ongoing or not - because it might be that we are exchanging particles all the time - with the virtual quantum world on the atomic scale.  We don't know enough to say that all the particles came from the big bang.

Comment by Tabitha McCoy on May 4, 2012 at 8:05pm

So I was watching Carl Sagan's "Cosmos", and he says, "We are made pf starstuff," saying that every atom, every molecule that exists now began at a singular point in time, the very beginning of our universe. So that makes me wonder...does the 'spiritual truth' "we are all one" hold merit, then?

Comment by Alice on May 3, 2012 at 10:52pm

a sense of belonging is very important to us....  I like that there are people all over the world who also identify with naturalism and I think that it attracts kind hearted people, compassionate, caring and rationally minded - a winning combination.


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