I found this video on YouTube and the arguement it made intriged me. I wanted to post it here to get your feedback.

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is it me or does the computer narration make your skin crawl?
"is it me or does the computer narration make your skin crawl?"


It would be interesting to ask this question of the two women who married Stephen Hawking.

"Hawking's achievements were made despite the increasing paralysis caused by the ALS. By 1974, he was unable to feed himself or get out of bed. His speech became slurred so that he could only be understood by people who knew him well. In 1985, he caught pneumonia and had to have a tracheotomy, which made him unable to speak at all. A Cambridge scientist built a device that enables Hawking to write onto a computer with small movements of his body, and then have a voice synthesizer speak what he has typed.[13]
Jane Hawking (née Wilde), Hawking's first wife, cared for him until 1991 when the couple separated, reportedly due to the pressures of fame and his increasing disability. They had three children: Robert (b. 1967), Lucy (b. 1969), and Timothy (b. 1979). Hawking then married his nurse, Elaine Mason (who was previously married to David Mason, the designer of the first version of Hawking's talking computer), in 1995. In October 2006, Hawking filed for divorce from his second wife.[14]"

*slapping myself repeatedly on the wrist* while exclaiming: "Bad, Heidi! BAD Heidi!

(Is poor taste a sign of intelligence?)
It is ridiculous to impute theism to the argument that material reductionists have not proven their case concerning the origin of consciousness. They haven't.

Intentionality is especially indicative of that. How does the brain mechanically originate intentionality... or creativity... or an original thought? How does the brain mechanically correlate subjective, semantic meanings and come up with ironic humor? How is that passed along via DNA?

It is also ridiculous to impute theism to the questioning of theories describing some presumed nothingness preceding a postulated "singularity" predicated upon some cryptic mathematics that you, yourselves, don't comprehend.

Unwavering Faith in concepts that you do not personally comprehend, but which you accept based upon the identities and qualifications of the person(s) upholding them, and vehemently defend to the point of nastiness is no different from religious dogma. It smacks of the previous experiences I've had debating overt theists... except that the OVERT theists were far more honest about it.

Here you all are... adhering to supposedly rational concepts, the mathematical proofs of which you do not personally comprehend, and clinging to presumptions that you've admitted we don't really know for certain. That's faith-based belief, whether you want to admit it or not.

Labeling me a "troll" and a "theist" and then attempting to herd me away from the secular category because I do not simply swallow YOUR religious dogma is laughable.

Especially diagnostic is the anger which prevents you from seeing the genuine, ironic humor in Hawkings' hedging of his own bet concerning his own theories.

Religious zealots are NOTORIOUSLY devoid of a sense of humor... obviously because they cannot possibly see how funny they really are.

Jason - what has yet to be proven is that the intelligence demonstrated by intelligent beings originates within the brain. How can intention spontaneously originate from a mechanical process within the brain?

Did you watch the video I posted earlier, in which Dawkins explains the behavior of ANTS which cooperatively farm, engage in pest control, and cultivate crops? Do you realize what rudimentary brains these individual creatures have? How can this intelligent, cooperative behavior be the product of these creatures' tiny, simple, individual brains?

"Further, it is emphatically not an act of faith to accept the learning of the scientific community as being reasonable approximations to the truth, and acting on that premise. "

It is for me if I can't verify these beliefs based upon rational comprehension. Bizarre theories about enormous amounts of matter and energy somehow reducing to a mysterious point of singular nothingness preceded by utter nothingness and based upon cryptic mathematical gobbledegook which even the likes of Hawkings is unwilling to assert without hedging his own bets is no more believable to me than a virgin birth or a talking snake.

Bow down and worship it all if you like... but don't bother blustering and trying to blow smoke up my ass. You all just remind me of Jimmy Swaggart or Marjoe Gortner, ironically demonizing non-believers.
To whom it may concern,

What do we gain from calling fellow atheists with ideas that we find disagreeable theists, creationists, trolls, dumbasses, etc.?

I really don't get it. It reeks of insecurity. Why go into attack mode so quickly?

If Heidi's as confused as you think she is, be a kind human being and lend her a hand. But the name-calling and questioning of motive is really alienating.
You call them creationist theists when they say they think a universal intelligence that is timeless created the universe, and guides evolution, and gives puppies pyschic powers.

We've been trying to lend her a hand, and we are instead met with attacks against science and material reductionism.

But I'm glad someone is trying to defend her, not all of us can be harsh =D
I don't doubt your brilliance for a second, Stephan. Or your good motives. =D

It's sounds to me like Heidi's trying to maintain some fluidity in her thinking and wanting to not take anything for granted just because an "authority" says it's so. Those are not characteristics commonly found in creationist theists.

May you bask in the warm glow of the light of the Universe.

There doesn't seem to be a lot of fluidity in her thought. Just a rejection of the concepts of modern science. Maybe I've missed some of her comments though, it is possible.

Brilliant? Friend, I smell patronization =P
Given that there are 15 pages on this thread, I wouldn't say we called bullshit on Heidi all that quickly. I don't like questioning motives either, but when a person continues to trot out the same lines of argument even after extensive debunking, we would be remiss in not at least suspecting a troll, and giving the person fair warning that they are acting like one. Honestly, it's very difficult to tell the difference, but we know we get trolls. This is always going to be a balancing act between protecting ourselves from trolls and alienating legitimately confused people.

On the other hand, when I am legitimately confused, I read up on my own and ask humble questions, the answers to which I do not strenuously challenge without refuting or ignore while forcefully pushing my own answers to issues I have already admitted to being unsure about.
Rational thought...so beautiful. *teary eyed*
As to any "name calling" and "questioning of motive", you too have no basis for this accusation.

It was probably dumbass that seemed most out of place to me. By all means, deconstruct the erroneous idea, but why resort to calling her a dumbass? How does it enhance the exchange? How does it promote a better understanding of the subject at hand?

Since she seems incredibly attached to her concepts; completely unable or unwilling to examine them rationally unless we accept her basic premise that there can be "mind" that is not predicated upon 'brain' (physical), then, YES, I for one, find that I MUST question her motives.

Ok. She does seem very attached to Sheldrake.

I did notice from reading her comments that she's new to this group and new to A|N. I don't smell troll as much as someone trying to figure things out. However, I'm willing to admit that my perspective is incorrect.

Thanks. I'll mind my own business now. :)
It is all too easy to get carried away. A reminder to be civil never hurts. I can't claim that I never succumb to the temptation, but I do always try to think about whether I'm going too far. It gets awfully frustrating when somebody insists on clinging to a nebulous something-or-other rather than squarely addressing rational approaches, which are the only ones that have yet to yield any dependable results at all.
Very balanced reply, Jason.


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