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One third the way through Battle Royale VII... who is winning?

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  • One third the way through Battle Royale VII... who is winning?

    Zakath or Bob? Who is making the better case so far?
    Bob Enyart
    Its still to early to tell
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  • #2
    Bob. Zakath does not seem to want to "go there" with some of the issues--I know he's not a scientist, but then neither is Bob. Neither one is doing a bad job--I know I couldn't do as well as either of them can, and I appreciate the time they are both taking to do this. I think Bob is doing his research better, and presenting his findings better.
    It's interesting for me. I was an atheist until a little less than 5 years ago, so I understand where Zak is coming from. If if hadn't been for Bob's manuscript, The Plot, explaining some of the seemingly irreconcilable statements in the Bible, I would probably still be one. It's like watching my old self fight with the new one. I can't tell you how much I enjoy this Battle Royale.


    • #3
      Awesome insight Crow! God bless!

      Yeah, Bob is totally kicking Zakath's butt. He seems "hesitant", and tries to take the subject and ideas Bob brings up to another subject or off topic....
      Question what you believe in, and then you'll know.


      • #4
        Still too early to tell yet. Both have a lot of work ahead of them if either one of them is going to win.

        ....but I think Zakath's next post will be very critical for him.

        "Passions act as winds to propel our vessel; our reason is the pilot that steers her, without the winds she would not move; and without the pilot she would be lost". - The French


        • #5
          Bob's step-by-step clarity helps to show how Zakath avoids some answers. Partly due to this, I think Bob is doing better.
          Attempting to get to the bottom of arguments at TOL since 2000.

          "Love is the fulfillment of the law." - Romans 13:10


          • #6
            Originally posted by Crow
            Bob. Zakath does not seem to want to "go there" with some of the issues--I know he's not a scientist, but then neither is Bob. Neither one is doing a bad job--I know I couldn't do as well as either of them can, and I appreciate the time they are both taking to do this. I think Bob is doing his research better, and presenting his findings better.
            It's interesting for me. I was an atheist until a little less than 5 years ago, so I understand where Zak is coming from. If if hadn't been for Bob's manuscript, The Plot, explaining some of the seemingly irreconcilable statements in the Bible, I would probably still be one. It's like watching my old self fight with the new one. I can't tell you how much I enjoy this Battle Royale.
            I agree with Crow. Zakath just posted his fourth post. Gotta go read it!


            • #7
              It's of not much relevance of who is to "win" this battle, after all, how do we define the winner? Who is the arbiter here?

              So far though I think that Bon Enyard makes better/stronger arguments then Zakarth. However, the vision of Bon Enyard are not mine, but he presents his case in a more stronger way.

              Zakarth has stumbled on some issues. I think he misses a strong conviction into a non-theistic philosophical point of view. His point of view sometimes shifts between materialism and idealism.
              The only way he could make his case a strong case is by argumenting from the point of view of materialism.
              Materialism does not provide for the possibilitie of a universe popping out of nothing or a begining of time, instead the universe must be hold to have existence for eternity. That would settle the origin of the universe case.
              I think Zakarth has adapted in his point of view some speculative modern cosmological ideas, which are not much more then contemporary ideas based on idealism, which is the point of view that ultimately reality drops down to some fundamental principle or absolute idea. If you open up for the possibilitie that the universe may have begun from nothing, you are in fact introducing idealism (and with that also theism) into your thinking, cause matter would then be not the fundamental substance, but reality would drop down to some fundamental principle or absolute idea.

              Also Zakath is not sharp enough arguing against the fact that the ideas of Bob Enyart are that of a point of view of absolutism.
              The way Bob Enyart reasons is that either God exists, or science would need to explain in an absolute way all there is to know about existence/the material reality.
              The "God of the Gaps" attempt in his last reply, is catching up on that a bit, but Zakath could reason a bit stronger against the absolutism of Bob Enyart and showing that absolutism has no ground in human knowledge.
              Last edited by heusdens; June 28th, 2003, 05:18 AM.


              • #8

                BQ8: Zakath, please a) explain conceptually, in the most broad terms, how consciousness could have arisen from atoms and molecules, and feel free to even start with biologic life, or b) admit that you cannot
                In a reply to such a question put forward, let Bob Enyard explain how simple air molecues, when we know all the laws of physics acting on molecules, could form a pattern that is able of ripping out complete houses from the ground and tilt them in the air.
                For someone with normal intelligence, but completely new to this world, when presented such a case, and only able of knowing about laws of physics and molecules, such an event would be complete magic, cause how can one imagine that molecules of air moving in a specific way, could behave at such large scale in a combined effort to rip houses out of the ground? Are the molecules doind magic in their combined movement, do they have a goal, a consciousness in themselves, so that they know what they are doing?

                This example just shows that even when the atmosphere is completely made up of simple air molecules and governed by the known laws of physics, the phenomena of the weather and the atmosphere are a different layer of reality, with unsuspected phenomena that could not be simply explained even when knowing all about the behaviour of molecules.
                But the link between behaviour of air molecules individually, and the phenomena of the weather, are just an easy step, and many times simpler as the link between the behaviour of atoms and molecules and human behaviour.

                So the approach taken by Bon Enyart, is that of absurd reasoning.
                We can not tell, from biological components as DNA, RNA and enzymes, how human behaviour is governed.
                Nevertheless, as in the case of weather phenomena, does that contribute to the point of view that we need deities to explain such phenomena?

                In early manhood it was thought that rain, thunder and other natural phenomena could not be explained, and mankind invented deities to explain such phenomena.
                Current day science show we do not need deities to explain the weather, and nevertheless, we are not able of completely determining weather phenomena.

                For the weather phenomena, and that of the atmosphere and the climate, we have good grounds to claim that - even when we don't have and never will have complete insight in how the laws of physics cause these phenomena, but in a non-deterministic way (that is to say: even when we could in theory have all the measurements of the factors determining weather phenomena, we will never be able to make deterministic predictions about the weather) - we can reside all our explenations for weather phenomena on the laws that govern the behaviour of matter.
                That is: there will be no instance in which we would have to reside on the acts of deities to explain these phenomena. It could only be the case that we have insufficient data to say anything meaningfull about certain phenomena.
                For instance, it is not likely that we can tell how long the global heating of earth will continue, and if or when this process will stop or be reverted. We can make some assumptions, but basically the phenomena on hand is too huge and complex to make good predictions.

                For human behaviour, and acknowledging the fact that the human system is a very complex system in itself, it can be argued that the position is the same. We can and never will be able to tell completely what our behaviour is determined by, even when we don't have to assume that our behaviour is governed by factors outside of the material world, neither deities who would be responsible for our behaviour.

                Science up to now is able of explaining some phenomena of the human mind, using just the know laws of physics and based on the behaviour of matter. We still miss complete knowledge about all the material factors that determine our behaviour.

                Nevertheless this already is much more then the position of theist, who claim that we can not in any way explain human behaviour in terms of material behaviour, and therefore need to base human behaviour on acts of deities.

                That statement is something the theist have to proof, and show a direct connction between the act of a deity, and a specific human behaviour, and how all of that has been performed.

                Where/when have they done that?

                Can theist present to us any case in which we need to reside our explenations on spitirual or theistic grounds, and can't use a materialistic explenation?

                Even the case they present as the origin of the universe, has no grounds, cause the materialistic explenation is that the universe is unfolding in time endlessly, that is without begin or end.
                Hence, no theistic explenation is necessary.
                Last edited by heusdens; June 28th, 2003, 06:11 AM.


                • #9
                  Theistic Worldview: I have a worldview, described in these posts, consistent within itself regarding origins and with the observable facts and the laws of science. There is no fourth alternative to explain the origin of the universe, and the most well-established physical laws indicate the universe could not always have been here, and could not pop into existence on its own from nothing, and so that leaves a supernatural, powerful, pre-existing Creator as the only other option. The irreducible complexity of biological life indicates that it could not have originated from simpler pre-cell life forms, and so that leaves a knowledgeable Creator as the only option. And (BA10) the consciousness of human beings could not arise by natural processes from matter, and so that leaves us with a personal Creator.
                  This quote shows a popular misconception about the material world.
                  Physics indicates indeed that the present universe in it's present material form, could not have been there for all of eternity.
                  This in itself is not a new point of view, and has always been part of the materialistic worldview.
                  All forms of matter known to us, show that these material forms exist on a finite spatio-temporal basis. But materialism also shows that all material forms are in constant motion and change, in which one (finite) material form changes into another (finite) material form.

                  Matter however is acknowledge to be infinite, in the sense that the transormation and shaping and transition of material forms (in a finit spatio-temporal extent) takes place in all of eternity, without begin or end.

                  The recognition of physics and cosmology that the present material form of the universe, was not there for all of eternity, therefore does not mean that matter itself had a beginning or popped out of nothing, but that a large scale material transformation took place around 14 Gyears ago, that shaped the current universe and current material forms.
                  Physics can not adapt the point of view that matter and the laws of physics popped out of nothing, physics can just acknowledge that the current universe and material form, have had some begin (which just defines or denotes a material transformation), and with a largely or almost completely unknown material history before that transformation took place.

                  From this point of view of dialectical materialism, theories evolved supporting the fact that such a large scale transformation took place in the begining of our present day universe, and which gave rise to the emergence of the theory of inflation.
                  Initiator for this theory was the Soviet physicist Starobinsky, who at the end of the 70-ies presented a model for such a material transformation, but this model was renewed by the Stanford scientist Alan Guth, and later developed by Andrei Linde (eternal / open inflation model).

                  I should not be a surprise that also the material form which existed during this period of inflation, also needed to have a finite spatio-temporal extend, and that for the large part of the material history, we can just make guesses, without any definite observational evidence.

                  Inflation theory itself, even when it contains speculative insights in how matter behaved at that time, is not entirely speculative in the sense that inflation theory makes some good assumptions about how the present day universe looks like, which can be observationally tested for.

                  One popular misconception about inflation theory should be mentioned. This theory does not say that the universe started out from nothing, but is a model in which the present day material forms emerged out of a pre-existing material formation in the form of scalar fields that can exist in a vacuum. Scalar fields have the basic properties of matter, that is that there is motion / change in time and space.


                  • #10
                    Dude, take those thoughts to Battle Talk in the Grand Stands...
                    Question what you believe in, and then you'll know.


                    • #11


                      Za should at the very least admit that the bulk of the evidence, the "truth" as Bob defines it(and Za agrees with that definition) is on Enyarts side, at least for now...(statement of reality)

                      Since Za's position is that science has no dogmas and may some day contradict Enyarts presentation of scientific "evidence", In doing so he somewhat admits the evidence for the "first" cause God Enyart is presenting is there, or at least possible.. and logically consistent with known science..(truth)(for now)

                      The known evidence, the known truth "A statement of "reality" is (even if only for now if you want to make that argument) on Enyarts side

                      I see Enyart answering more honestly, consistently, rationally and directly then Za..

                      Za is betting on the future to be consistent with the past patterns of false deities being debunked by new "evidence" I think he is risking allot..
                      Those false deities have in some part been debunked by the information in the Christian bible that Enyarts first cause God inspired Which I would not be suprised if He points that out soon as part of proof of divine inspiration and more "statements of reality" for his first cause creator...

                      I will be reading this one more then once.
                      It’s the best debate I've read so far on Theo online..second only to
                      Lion and DeeDee.


                      • #12
                        It seems to me that bob to trying to lure Zak into certain killing zones where he can move in for a checkmate. Every time I read a post by Bob, I'm thinking, whew! He's got him now. But then, Zak doesn't take the bait. Zaks "god of the gaps" was an excellent reply. I think Zak can win by simple staying out of the way of Bills guns until Bill runs out of ammo. I don't think Bill can any more prove that his god is the god of the gaps than someone else could prove it to be allah. I just finished a class in New Testament Textual Criticism. I hope bob is not planning to use the Bible to support his belief that his god is the god of the gap.

                        I remember reading in a physics book where they were trying to determine if light was a particle or a wave. They had some sort of set-up where light would go through a slit, or something. The funny thing was, the light particles were supposed to hit the wall, but instead they would find their way into the slit, as if they "knew" they needed to go through there. Is anyone familiar with this experiment? It might cast light on this "Consciousness" thing.


                        • #13
                          Have I missed it somewhere in this debate or is Bob still avoiding providing an argument toward one particular theistic perspective or is he still talking generalities about some hypothetical "creator".

                          This omission is important.
                          The Christians on this form may adopt Bob's argument to imply the Christian God yet this may not be the case-- Bob will not indicate to us otherwise.

                          To purport that our universe was created does not necessarily conclude this alleged 'creator' is the (singular) Christian God.

                          Bob's debate only indicates "creation" which could be applied to polytheism, pantheism and/or agnosticism and of course Bob's move toward a creator could be supporting views of Allah, Vishnu or some other religious deviation.

                          Zak needs to address and attack this deistic ambiguity.

                          Christians: "I - a stranger and afraid - in a world I never made.." -- Houseman


                          • #14
                            Zakath is winning, but not by much. The following quote is why.

                            "Today some people, like my opponent, still seek to fill the gaps in human knowledge with their deities. To them, I have one reminder – human knowledge of the natural universe grows, seemingly inexorably. The gaps of yesteryear are shrinking. Those whose God is limited to the gaps will find him eventually shrinking to irrelevance as the need for a God to explain the gaps vanishes along with them." - Zakath

                            To the extent that this critique applies to Enyarts arguments, Zakath is winning. As others have pointed out, Enyart really can't win this unless he switches to a presuppositional form of argument. The seeds are there in some of his examples, and that may even be where he intends to go, but that isn't clear yet. But an evidential argument can almost always be criticized as being a god of the gaps argument.


                            • #15
                              Since, the question of God's existence has been debated by hundred if not thousands of brilliant minds over the centuries, I doubt the question will become resolved here. Furthermore, it is doubtful here on this forum that any current believer or non-believer will be sufficiently swayed from their original position by the arguments at hand.
                              Therefore, the question of who will 'win' this debate will be decided by the art of persuasion.

                              By this fact, Bob has a tremendous advantage over Zak . Bob seems very adept as a sermonizer, which should be the case, since this is his stock and trade.

                              Unfortunately, Zak argues from a scientific perspective and when he tries to pin Bob's position into debatable equations for which he can debate their logical soundness, Bob artfully accuses Zak of obfuscation.

                              So it seems this debate boils down to dry scientific obfuscation against persuasive spiritual elocution.

                              Bob will win, if by nothing more than style-points.

                              Christians: "I - a stranger and afraid - in a world I never made.." -- Houseman