jottings from tertius

views of the world from my worldview window

"If there was no God, there would be no atheists." G.K. Chesterton


SITES OF NOTE

Tektonics Apologetics Ministry
blogs4God
The Adarwinist reader
Bede's Library: the Alliance of Faith and Reason
A Christian Thinktank
Doxa:Christian theology and apologetics
He Lives
Mike Gene Teleologic
Errant Skeptics Research Institute
Stephen Jones' CreationEvolutionDesign
Touchstone: a journal of mere Christianity: mere comments
The Secularist Critique: Deconstructing secularism
Ex-atheist.com: I Wasn't Born Again Yesterday
imago veritatis by Alan Myatt
Solid Rock Ministries
The Internet Monk: a webjournal by Michael Spencer
The Sydney Line: the website of Keith Windschuttle
Miranda Devine's writings in the Sydney Morning Herald
David Horowitz frontpage magazine
Thoughts of a 21st century Christian Philosopher
one-eighty
Steven Lovell's philosophical themes from C.S.Lewis
Peter S. Williams Christian philosophy and apologetics
Shandon L. Guthrie
Clayton Cramer's Blog
Andrew Bolt columns
Ann Coulter columns




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"These are the days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed except his own." G.K.Chesterton


"You cannot grow a beard in a moment of passion." G.K.Chesterton


"As you perhaps know, I haven't always been a Christian. I didn't go to religion to make me happy. I always knew a bottle of Port would do that."C. S. Lewis

"I blog, therefore I am." Anon


Friday, March 04, 2005

"we're all born atheists" and other dumb ideas

 
She said,"I know what it's like to be dead"
The materialist version of death is the ultimate killjoy null hypothesis. The epistemological problem of knowing what it is "like" to be dead can never be resolved... In a recent study, for example, I reported that when adult participants were asked to reason about the psychological abilities of a protagonist who had just died in an automobile accident, even participants who later classified themselves as "extinctivists" (i.e., those who endorsed the statement "what we think of as the 'soul,' or conscious personality of a person, ceases permanently when the body dies") nevertheless stated that the dead person knew that he was dead. For example, when asked whether the dead protagonist knew that he was dead (a feat demanding, of course, ongoing cognitive abilities), one young extinctivist's answer was almost comical. "Yeah, he'd know, because I don't believe in the afterlife. It is non-existent; he sees that now." Try hard as he might to be a good materialist, this subject couldn't help but be a dualist.

...Several decades ago, the developmental psychologist Gerald Koocher described, for instance, how a group of children tested on death comprehension reflected on what it might be like to be dead "with references to sleeping, feeling 'peaceful,' or simply 'being very dizzy.'" More recently, my colleague David Bjorklund and I found evidence that younger children are more likely to attribute mental states to a dead agent than are older children, which is precisely the opposite pattern that one would expect to find if the origins of such beliefs could be traced exclusively to cultural learning.

It seems that the default cognitive stance is reasoning that human minds are immortal...

JESSE BERING Psychologist, University of Arkansas, who, to avoid being caste into outer darkness by his peers, adds this rider:
"Don't get me wrong... I don't believe in the afterlife. Recent findings have led me to believe that it's all a cognitive illusion churned up by a psychological system specially designed to think about unobservable minds."

That comforting piece of reductionism should enable Dr Bering to sleep peacefully at night after an evening spent contemplating his own mortality...


She said She said
Lennon and McCartney

She said, "I know what it's like to be dead
I know what it is to be sad"
And she's making me feel like I've never been born
I said, "Who put all those things in your head
Things that make me feel that I'm mad"
And you're making me feel like I've never been born

She said, "You don't understand what I've said"
I said, "No, no, no, you're wrong"
When I was a boy everything was right, everything was right
I said, "Even though you know what you know
I know that I'm ready to leave"
'Cause you're making me feel like I've never been born

She said, "You don't understand what I've said"
I said, "No, no, no, you're wrong"

She said (she said) "I know what it's like to be dead"
(I know what it's like to be dead)

10:54:00 pm