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#24 - noblexfenrir (12/24/2012) [-]
"I don't think it's uncommon to meet atheists that think theists are somewhat 'lesser' people."
Granted, but this doesn't really pertain to atheists specifically, it's expected from any group, even theism.
"But what I mean is, that basically every person perceives the world in his own way, as there's differences in how we (think we) obtain knowledge and how we experience the world.
If we started all over again there's no certainty that the scientists will perceive the world the same way as we do today. Perhaps some physical laws would reappear, but what if we had no Darwin or no Polly Matzinger or no John Keynes? There's no one that can tell whether we will get the same scientific paradigms once again.
I think he sees science as an exact and measurable thing, when it often isn't."
I get what you mean, however what he's saying is that let's take norse gods. People will never recreate specific norse gods to an exact T if everything was restarted. They may create thor and odin and loki, but they might have a different name for nifleheim. Such is the nature of religion, it's purely subjective and as a result can be altered simply by a change of perception on the individual level.
While science will never change in the way Penn is talking about, they may not reproduce our language, our math system, or our labs, but gravity will still exist, and he is saying that eventually they will figure out gravity and it's exact effect on the planet.
A better way of explaining it is: If every human on the planet just up and died, religions on this planet wouldn't exist. However, if every human on the planet just up and died, the answers science has given us remain the same.
#46 - pava (12/24/2012) [-]
I wholeheartedly agree that if we started over tomorrow, it is likely that we would still have Gods, but it would differ from what we have today.
I also agree that science will not change, but what we regard as the truth might.
I know you mention gravity, but I actually avoided mentioning gravity in my previous post as I regard it as a part of the fundamental laws of of nature and they probably wouldn't change too much. But there's much more to science than the laws of physics - eg. medicine and biology.
I think that knowledge comes from what we experience and human reasoning. No one can know if the 'human knowledge' is the absolute truth. Especially because we've been wrong so many times in history, that one might conclude that human knowledge is flawed. Human knowledge is somewhat relative.
'The new world' would have a different set of people, who will likely experience and reason different than us and maybe/maybe not create paradigms that is different from ours, but would still be regarded as science (aka. the truth). Because human knowledge is relative and not absolute.
I can't say I disagree 100 % with the Jillette quote, but I think he views science as something absolute, when it's - more or less - a collection of ideas/theories that we think represent the world _as we know it_. One might say that if we started over, not only religion would change, but what we regard as the truth today would change.