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What Facts About Human Nature Has God Revealed?

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Posted by John Morgan Powell on February 20, 2001 22:56:41 UTC

Richard David Yannopoulos-Ruquist,

You wrote:

> It's a fact about human nature. It is out the
> the reach of mathematics. The relevant
> experiments in denying freedom of thought are
> the lessons of history.

Your proof is vague. I would be more confident in its validity if alternative theories had been proposed and rejected in scientific experiments. I suspect that good experiments testing it have not yet been performed, so its validity remains questionable. In other words, it might be true, but until science can confirm it then we should not be dogmatic about it being true. I'm not sure things like this are out of the reach of mathematics.

Furthermore, you still didn't answer whether the idea came from God, religion, or some non-religious source.

> God has not told us anything about life or nature.

Thank you for conceding that.

> Yet there is a great deal about human
> nature in particular in the various religions
> that has not been verified or falsified by
> science

My grandmother believed a lot of things that haven't been verified or falsified by science. Should she be held up as a great prophetess? Who decides whose views get the stamp of society's approval? Mohammed's views were sometimes imposed by Jihad, Christ's views by the Inquisition and European colonialism.

How do we know that ideas about human nature that can be found in religion comes from God or the religions we now find it? Maybe they were views stolen from others. For example, marriage is a good idea. Did it originate with religion or was it based on pair bonding practices of our ape ancestors? It's been shown that much of Judaism and Christianity was stolen/borrowed from others.

Since we now agree that no significant knowledge about how the natural universe functions came from God, what facts about human nature came from God and religion?

> Let's turn the tables. Where in science did
> your principle of happiness come from. There's
> no mathematics behind it.It cannot be
> objectively measured. By the way I agree with
> that principle. And science can help make it
> happen. But it is not a law of nature. It does
> not have to happen.

I'm not a biochemist, but my understanding is that happiness, like all emotions, has a psychochemical basis. Depression can be caused and treated with chemicals and psychological techniques. Chemistry has a firm mathematical basis, but psychology does not yet. Give it time and psychology will become more mathematical. The human psychology is quite complicated. I don't think the ideas of ancient shepherders and fisherman should be considered worthy of comparison with modern psychologists on what happiness is. In particular, there's no good evidence that emotions like happiness are affected by supernatural things like a human spirit, God, angels, or devils.

I suggest we encourage science to find the answers to our questions rather than assume some religion already has the answer.

> Frankly my opinion is that you put too much
> stock in science.

I appreciate your opinion, but I don't agree with you. I think society puts too little stock in science and too much stock in the superstitions of their family, friends, and ancestors.

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