Wednesday, June 29, 2016

All Evidence is not Equal

Final Scene from the greatest film ever made, Ingmar Bergman's 
The Seventh Seal, the characters deance into eternity
with death.A more full context for god;s "silence" than Naturalism

Last time I took on Jeff Lowder's F-inductive arguments” which are aimed at making naturalism seem more probable than theism. I made the mistake of trying to answer his 25 and had to use one-liners to do it That's not going to work  because the other guys aren't willing to stretch themselves to fill in the gaps. This time I'll focus on a couple of arguments and go in for fill explanations. His arguments focus upon a new concept in inductive reasoning called "F inductive."

“F-inductive argument”: an argument in which the evidence to be explained favors one explanatory hypothesis over one or more of its rivals, i.e., P(E | H1 & B) > P(E | H2 & B). Explanatory arguments are F-inductive arguments and have the following structure.
1. E is known to be true, i.e., Pr(E) is close to 1.
2. H1 is not intrinsically much more probable than H2, i.e., Pr(|H1|) is not much greater than Pr(|H2|).
3. Pr(E | H2 & B) > Pr(E | H1 & B).
4. Other evidence held equal, H1 is probably false, i.e., Pr(H1 | B & E) < 0.5.
Good F-inductive arguments show that E is prima facie evidence — that is why (4) begins with the phrase, “Other evidence held equal.” They leave open the possibility that there may be other evidence which favors H1 over H2; indeed, they are compatible with the situation where the total evidence favors H1 over H2.
F-inductive arguments are “stronger” than C-inductive arguments insofar as they show E not only adds to the probability of H2, but that E is more probable on the assumption that H2 is true than on the assumption that H1 is true. They are weaker than P-inductive arguments, however, because they don’t show that E is ultima facie evidence — they don’t show that E makes H2 probable.[1]

The idea here is that the situation would be more  expected under naturalism than under theism even though it may well be expected under theism.The operative phrase here, "an argument in which the evidence to be explained favors one explanatory hypothesis over one or more of its rivals," because deciding that is a function what assumptions one makes. Consider his second point in his list of 25 examples:


(2.on his list) The “Anti-Creation Ex Nihilo Argument”
This argument may be summarized as follows:
(1) Everything that had a beginning comes from pre-existing material.
(2) The universe had a beginning.
(3) Therefore, the universe came from pre-existing material.
This argument appears to be a fallacy of composition. Just because each individual aspect of the system has a material origin does't mean the system as a whole does. The assumption he;s making in p1 is totally unsupported in relation to the universe as a while, We have no evince that the universe had to have a material origin, he hasn't even considered my argument that the God of process theology be thought of as material in the same sense that energy is thought of as such. While we are om the subject I also documented that we don't really know what energy is made of. We might be able to think of energy as non-material. This all just highlights the point the assumptions we make have a huge bearing on the outcome of the argument e\]regardless of weather it's inductive or predictive.

Several of his hypotheses dealt with evolution. Examples include: 4.The scale of the Universe, 5. evidence from the hostility of the universe to life, and 7. Complex life evolved from simple life.The point being God might well have created a world that evolves but naturalism is more expected to favor evolution as an explanation because its the only  naturalistic exploitation we  know about. That means naturalism has to be the more appropriate or more likely explanation for any such evolutionary phenomena. But again it's totally a matter of the assumptions we make. Lowder is assuming God, while he could've used evolution,  is less predisposed to it than naturalism which has no choice. That's still just making an assumption. who says God's relationship to evolution is something that he can take or leave? We don't know that. What if God is "naturalism itself?" Of course Lowder assumes  an absolute contradiction between naturalism ad theism but he's basing it upon the god of the evangelical. What about the God Teilhard of De Chardin?

I believe God is real, I also believe that evolution is real. Logically then God must have used evolution. I have no reason not to assume that theism favors an evolutionary hypothesis with all the attendant situations that accompany it. What is the reason then for assuming an atheistic naturalism? Theologians like Tilehard de Chardin were very given to flights of fancy about the nature of evolution's use in the divine economy. I know Lower warms us off thinking the possibility of God using evolution is an answer. There's more to it than that, but since evolution is not necessarily the providence of a Godless from of naturalism why assume it is at all.

The Larger framework

Favoring a given explanatory hypothesis does not cancel or negate positive reason to believe. if favored hypothesis can't overcome my reason than God is not made less probable by evolution, or any other phenomena,. That is especially since God can as easily account for evolution.  Another point might be that the individual circumstances that spell auto naturalistic narrative, such as the scale of the universe for example,  are aspects of a larger framework that  is not necessarily devoid of a connection to the divine. For example, fine tuning argument might be reversal of the issues he's discussing.

Several times in Monday's post I pointed out that my soteriological drama argument would answer these issues (12. Flourishing and Languishing of Sentient Beings, and 13. Self-Centeredness and Limited Altruism of Human Beings and others). This is a prime example of how assumptions change outcome. The argument says that God wants us to search for truth because through searching we will internalize the values of the good. The point is God's alleged hiddeness and the vicissitudes of life are explained by the need to make the world appear neutral. That means there's a reason why it has to appear this way. I know the idea is not just that there is no reason, Lowder doesn't deny that God might have a reason, But other evidence being equal the the explanation that most appropriate is is the one  most likely and thus the other one is false. 

All Evidence is not Equal

The problem is the evidence is not equal. making assumptions that favor naturalism is one way of fudging the data.Another way is to take each explanatory hypothesis in isolation then the surrounding data appears equal or it can at least be assumed so. Yet we do not live in world where these aspects of life can be taken in isolationism. Life evolving from simple to complex, the hostility of nature toward life, these are all aspects of evolution We don;t need to isolate any one of them, Yet evolution is just another aspect in a larger list of reality. Where do we draw the line and say "things on this side are indicative of reality and thinking's on that side are not" and thus not relevant in F inductive arguments?


What we are really looking at in taking life as a whole is a phenomenological approach, Why? because since no good place to draw the line and all of life is too broad  we need to allow the sense data to suggest it's own categories, Rather than creating artificial catigories like "naturalism": and "evolution:" as opposed to "spirituality" or categories biased for God rather than against we need to allow the phenomena to give us the answer by suggesting the categories as they present themselves to our experience.

On that level when we think about pain we think about seeking answers and higher meaning we find things like mystical experience of the divine, or notions like meaning that require the divine to explain the redemptive aspects of suffering. To that extent God is not silent, one merely needs to focus and listen. That is how the soteriological drama answers the individual aspects by presenting reasons for God to allow such pain but it also becomes another aspect to be explained; a  part of the categories suggested by sense data  in phenomenological apprehension.
Some of these categories are going to form major headings into which these other aspects are subjects or sub sets, just as scale of the universe and i'ts hostility to life might be sub sets of evolution. 

One such major heading: (24 on the list) God’s Silence About His Purpose(s) for Creating Humans
If humankind was created for a purpose by God and had a role to play in carrying out this purpose, then God would want us to have a possibility of achieving our role so that he would have a possibility of achieving His goal.
Remember the issue is not just that God might have a reason to be hidden, but that the silence of God is "better explained" by the absence of a God rather than by assigning a reason for it. But is it? It may be if we only consider that one aspect But there are other things to consider. Life is not in a vacuum. When we consider other God arguments and the reasons for accepting soteriologocal drama suggests iotselof as an answer to silence Then the silence might become a sign of deeper meaning.

Probabilistic argument is not  going to overcome a deductive argument. Moreover, given the larger range of answers from other God arguments F inductive is not best exploitation. Example, Nature of being beats any inductive reason. Consider Paul Tillichh's famous statement that icf know being has depth you can't be an atheist:

The name of infinite and inexhaustible depth and ground of our being is God. That depth is what the word God means. And if that word has not much meaning for you, translate it, and speak of the depths of your life, of the source of your being, of your ultimate concern, of what you take seriously without any reservation. Perhaps, in order to do so, you must forget everything traditional that you have learned about God, perhaps even that word itself. For if you know that God means depth, you know much about Him. You cannot then call yourself an atheist or unbeliever. For you cannot think or say: Life has no depth! Life itself is shallow. Being itself is surface only. If you could say this in complete seriousness, you would be an atheist; but otherwise you are not.
If he is Jeff is going to start asking questions about God's silence then  has to be prepared to hear argument possibility of answer without assertions have to prove God first. I know he's not saying there is a silent God;  I know hie's saying silence is indicative of absence of God. Yet he's still raising the question of God He;s going to compare silences he has to be prepared to hear that maybe Goid is not silent but just whispering

--Paul Tillich, The Shaking of The Foundati

[1] Jeff Lowder, "F Inductive Arguments a New Type of inductive Argument,," The Secular Outpost March 21, 2014  blog, URL:

Monday, June 27, 2016

Naturalism is not an argument against God


Dr. Jeff Lowder of the secular outpost writes against a highly conservative Christian apologist named Anna Marie Perez.[1] He is especially incensed by her comment:

Atheism is a religion. Atheists act like Dracula confronting a cross when faced with the fact that their beliefs rely solely on faith. They hate the word faith, even though it’s all they’ve got. They try to make the claim that their religion is based on science, although actual science doesn’t support their claims any more than science can prove the existence of God. When they are called out for having faith, they’ll say something like, “An absence of belief isn’t faith,” yet their claim of an absence of a belief is a lie.
Lowder quips, "Atheism is a religion in the same sense that baldness is a hair color." Very droll.  Of course he doesn't believe atheist is a religion. I find this a lot, the answer is logical and simple. it's not a religion it's a religion substitute. What are they doming with it? They are replacing God in their lives with a concept called "atheism" that concept sways that here is no God and other concepts that help make that one work for them. Therefore it's a religion substitute. In some way it can resemble religion but it's not one.

Then he turns to her use of the term "faith."

 If she’s defining the word “faith” the same way as the Biblical book of Hebrews does (“confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see”), then she’s wrong to assume that “atheists,” without qualification, hope that no God or gods exist and that there is no afterlife. Yes, there are some atheists who hope for those things, but there are other atheists who hope for the opposite, and many more atheists who are indifferent. But if she’s defining the word “faith” to mean “belief without evidence” or even “belief against the (weight of the total) evidence,” then she’s mistaken.
I would like to deal with that issue at greater length but I don;t have time,I will point out however that faith does not mean accepting things without evidence, Faith is a complex concept it can't defined by one verse from the Bible. Look it up in Westminster Dictionary of Christian Theology.[2] Nor will it do to use an ordinary dictionary, There is really no excuse for not using the Westminster (as often a these people argue with Christians). That would be like teaching a philosophy class and never using Flew's Philosophical Dictionary.[3]

"Let’s start with some definitions:

naturalism (N) =df. The physical exists and, if the mental exists, the physical explains why the mental exists.
supernaturalism (S) =df. The mental exists and, if the physical exists, the mental explains why the physical exists.
Actually I think his definition of SNism is really Idealism. SNism would say something like "there is a higher level consciousnesses of God to which God will raise the individual by the power of his Holiness.

Naturalism (N) and supernaturalism (S) are mutually exclusive: they cannot both be true. But they are not jointly exhaustive: they can both be false. To account for the possibility that both N and S are false, we can introduce a third, ‘catch-all’ option:
otherism (O) =df. Both N and S are false.
That is not necessarily true  if one does not define SN in the way he talks about. The basic problem from my perspective of belief is that God is not a being it's not like there;s a stable of SN beginnings running about and god is one of them. God is the basis of reality, being  itself, the  ground of being. Thus one might understand physical reality as the result of natural processes started in motion by the ground of being. Of course it's probably true that people use the tern naturalism to specifically exclude religious answers and thus they would apply it to gainsay any belief in God. Ideas like those of Tillich or process theology of Hartshonre of Whithead may be compatible with naturalism at least technically[4]

If N is true, then atheism is true by definition because N denies the existence of all supernatural beings, including God. So one way to defend atheism is to defend N. And one way to defend N is to present evidence which is more probable on the assumption that N is true than on the assumption that theism (T) is true. 

I'm having trouble seeing exactly what that proves. Its not demonstrating the truth of naturism, it's only showing the propositioning are more probable if we assume  naturalism. is more probable if we assume naturalism s true, it's not like these are true because naturalism is more probable. Why should we assume naturalism? Surely not because the propositions are probable since we have to assume naturalism to make them seem more so, why should we do it?

If we assumes these propagandists are more probable if naturalism is true, therefore. if they are probable naturalism is true. Is that not affirming the consequent or something? If it rains the streets are wet, the streets are wet therefore it rains. But we used to have street washers so there could be counter causes. Still I don't think Dr. Lowder would make such a mistake so I must not understand it. Still I'm going to argue with certain ones of them. I can't do all of them.

I am going to use SN operationally the way Jeff does so as to not harp on the same soap box again. I just ask that the reader be aware there is another view point. He presents the proportions to show their probable nature. I will not be able to deal with them all. I will group  all those that I think can be answered with one liner. I'll present that list in the comment section

Here is his first one:

1. The Existence of the Universe

The universe–which may be defined as the sum total of all matter, energy, space, and time–exists. This fact is entailed by N: if N is true, then by definition the physical universe exists. But, although logically consistent with T, this fact is not entailed by T. If T is true, God could create the universe, but God could also choose not to create the universe. Thus, contrary to the claims of both the Leibnizian and kalam versions of the cosmological argument, the existence of the physical universe is more probable on N than on T.[1]In formal terms, the argument may be formulated as follows. If we let B be our background information; E be the existence of the universe; then the explanatory argument is as follows:(1) E is known to be true, i.e., Pr(E) is close to 1.(2) T is not intrinsically much more probable than N, i.e., Pr(|T|) is not much more probable than Pr(|N|).(3) Pr(E | N & B) =1 > Pr(E | T & B).(4) Other evidence held equal, T is probably false, i.e., Pr(T | B & E) < 1/2.

There are a couple of problems  I see here. Mind you I may not understand it.I'm just doing my best in my little mine sweeper against his battle ship. First, "God could create the universe, but God could also choose not to create the universe. Thus, contrary to the claims of both the Leibnizian and kalam versions of the cosmological argument, the existence of the physical universe is more probable on N than on T." I think that would only be true if the universe is deterministic and had to be. We don't know that ,Moreover, we don't know why there is a universe. No reason to think the universe had to be. Davies says it didn't. [5] Cosmological arguments are optional. They are not mandatory so if it's a choice between God or the cosmological argument we can throw the argument away. But that's not necessary because the universe is not necessary.

2. The “Anti-Creation Ex Nihilo Argument”

This argument may be summarized as follows:

(1) Everything that had a beginning comes from pre-existing material.
(2) The universe had a beginning.(3) Therefore, the universe came from pre-existing material.Now I think it is far from certain that (2) is true. Let’s make a distinction between:(2a) The expansion/inflation of the universe had a beginning.and:
(2b) The universe itself had a beginning, viz., the universe began to exist.It appears that (2a) is accepted by the vast majority of cosmologists. So let’s assume not only that (2a) is true, but that we know (2a) is true with certainty. It doesn’t follow that (2b) is true. In fact, as far as I can tell, (2b) does not enjoy the same widespread consensus among cosmologists as (2a) does. So there is reasonable doubt about (2b). But (2), like its theistic counterpart in the kalam cosmological argument, requires that (2b) is true. Because there is reasonable doubt about (2b), there is also reasonable doubt about (2).
But what if both (1) and (2b) are true? In that case, it would follow that (3) is true. But (3) entails the universe was not created ex nihilo, viz., created from (absolute) nothing. The falsity of creation ex nihilo is entailed by N (and physical reality’s existence is factually necessary and uncreated), but extremely unlikely (if not impossible) on T (and physical reality was either created ex nihilo or created ex deo [out of the being of God]).

(1) if by "Material" we mean matter, p1 is fallacious. We don't know the cause of the universe. 
(2) fallacy of composition; just because all the individual bits are produced by matter that doesn't mean the whole is. 

We could also think about this argument in non  Christian ways, I'ts Christian doctrine that says creation is ex nihilo that does not mean that doctrine is necessary for all belief in God. Then it's just as matter of what we mean by natter, Is energy natter? We don't really know what matter is made of.[6] we don't know what the singularity was made of it may be that a naturalistic origination yield naturalism.

Don't forget to check out the comments where I answer a bunch of hsi 25 I'll do more next time.


[1]Jeff Lowder, "25 Lines of evidence Against st theism," Secular Outpost, (June 26,2016) online blog URL - See more at:

[2] "Faith" The Westminster Dictionary of Christian Theology,Philadelphia: Westkmnster [ress Alan Richardson and John Bowden ed. 1983

[3 ] Anthony Flew, A Dictionary of Philosophy,St. Martin's Griffin; Revised edition, 1984

[4], "Process, Theology,"  The Westminster Dictionary of Christian... op cit 467-468God is diboplar. What is real of God and not merely potential is in process.God is changing alomng with creation, That put's gpd cpomsequnt pol owthin the naturalistic peocess.
[5]First Things: Physics and the Mind of God: The Templeton Prize Address (1999)

[6] Joseph Hinman, "Can Science Really Prove The Basis of Modern Physics." Metacrock's Blog

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 01, 2016 access 6/27/16

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Atheist Reduction of Knowledge to Science part 2

  photo schweitzer.jpg
Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965)
Foresaw the death of civilization

The problem is that among the forces gathered under the rubric “scientism” is a movement that seeks the abolition of humanity, that movement is “transhumanism.” In his article Lawler writes of how Wieseltier exposed Scientism as the major force seeking to destroy the arts and humanities and the crucial reasons why we must not allow this to happen. He speaks of transhumanism:

No one can deny, for example, that the movement known as transhumanism aims at “the abolition of man,” at the overcoming of the distinction between man and machine on pretty much the machine’s terms. Every competent scientist and humanist knows it will never achieve its goal, as Marxism never achieved anything like the “communism as the end of history” Marx fancifully described. But humanists are right to fear what can be lost on an ideological mission impossible.[1]

In fairness to transhumanists they see themselves as seeking to enhance human intellectual abilities. They point to the age old desire to mirror human life in after life as a wish for continuance; they also point to renaissance humanist classics such as Pico della Mirandola’s Oration on the Dignity of Man where he says “it will be in your power to descend to the lower, brutish forms of life; you will be able, through your own decision, to rise again to the superior orders whose life is divine.”[2] So they are not totally insensitive to humanist standards. Yet we know Picco was not a transhumanist. Bostrom begins reckoning their history from the 1920s (after trances his kindred spirits form caveman days to the Nietzsche) British biochemist J.B.S. Haldane published the essay Daedalous; or, Science and the future. That essay argued for the benefit of controlling our own genetics.[3] The term “transhuman” may have first been used by James Hughes in this 2004 work Citizen Cyborg: Why Democratic Societies Must Respond to the Redesigned Human of the Future.[4]
               Among the topics engaged by transhumanism we find “radical extension of human health-span, eradication of disease, elimination of unnecessary suffering, and augmentation of human intellectual, physical, and emotional capacities.[5] The list goes on with space colonization and the possibility of creating superintelligent machines, along with other potential developments that could profoundly alter the human condition.[6]  But what is the price for these “improvements?”

Transhumanists view human nature as a work-in-progress, a half-baked beginning that we can learn to remold in desirable ways. Current humanity need not be the endpoint of evolution. Transhumanists hope that by responsible use of science, technology, and other rational means we shall eventually manage to become posthuman, beings with vastly greater capacities than present human beings have.[7]

Essentially they are the “Borg,” from Star Trek the Next Generation. The Borg were the race of biological being augmented by machines that sought total domination of the universe.[8] They do actually advocate all assortments of augmentation for intellectual capability and bodily limitations. Their greatest value is what Bostrom calls “the post human relam.”[9] Looking to end humanity and move beyond it. To soften the blow they talk about how they share the values of humanism, but humaists want to prolong humanity so that the value will be consistent, the transhumanists want to end humanity and somehow believe the values will remain consistent. Leslie Fain, writing for Catholic World Report, finds that they are going to enhance everything from genetic life span to physical speed, they will become a new species. “Transhumanists, in general, aren’t too worried about this,” she quotes  Michael Cook, editor of MercatorNet,
“Their future will divide homo sapiens into two sub-species, the gen-poor (genetically poor) and the gen-rich. To me, it’s a bit like the ghastly scenario envisaged by H.G. Wells in The Time Machine—a world divided into the Eloi and the Morlochs.”
The transhumanism narrative is becoming more mainstream. Pop culture references and commercials (such as this one from Verizon) hyping men and women becoming “one” with their latest technological toys abound; last year an Italian transhumanist was elected to parliament.[10]
With this hyper technology augmenting a new species and moving beyond the old humanity, what’s going to lead them beyond the old sin nature? What’s going to assure that we wont wind up with a have-augmentation and Have-not augmentation culture?
            Transhumanism has not only bonded with atheism but produced a sort of fundamentalist segment. Zoltan Istavon, in huff post, who proclaims that “I am an atheist therefore I am a transhumanist.”

Sometime in the next decade, the number of worldwide godless people -- atheists, agnostics, and those unaffiliated with religion -- is likely to break through the billion-person mark. Many in this massive group already champion reason, defend science, welcome radical technologies, and implicitly trust and embrace modern medicine. They are, indeed, already transhumanists. Yet many of them don't know it because they haven't thought much about it. However, that is about to change. A transformative cultural storm comprised of radical life improving technologies is set to blow in soon.[11]

He is assuming that all non-affiliated are atheists, which is a mistaken assumption. These guys believe in reason that means none us old fashioned humans who believe in God believe in reason. We stupid old Christians don’t trust medicine. If this radical cultural storm waves the flag of destruction of humanity in this way as a badge of commitment to atheist ideology humanity is truly in trouble. The transhmanists are part of the scientistic ideology because they have come to accept the notion that science is the only form of knowledge and all value and truth must be shaped around that.
            The dangers of scientism and the loss of humanity have been lurking over modernity for a long time. These things go way back to the nineteenth century. What we see emerging today as the perils brought on by scientism is just the modern outcome of trends that were engaged by Albert Schweitzer as early as 1900. Schweitzer is all but forgotten today. He’s mainly remembered as a great humanitarian who went to Africa to nurse the poor. In the early part of the twentieth century and up to the 1960s he was given huge respect one of the most profoundly brilliant and great men of human history. Schweitzer had four brilliant careers going at the same time. He was a theologian, philosopher, Bible Scholar and concert musician. In addition to all that he built organs. After having achieved greatness with his book Quest of the Historical Jesus[12] he went to medical school and became a doctor. Then he went to Africa and spent his life nursing the poorest of the poor. One thing he did not do even in leaving civilization was to give up on civilization. He wrote one of the first philosophies of civilization and was one of the first philosophers to seriously argue for animal rights. As early as 1900 Schweitzer already argued that civilization was dead and we lived in barbarism. The reason, because civilization is more than just indoor plumbing and modern inventions it is an ideal about the quality of life in affording the individual purist of his/her cherished goals. Yet modern life negates the individual and reduces ideals and personal concepts of freedom to matters of taste and eccentricity. Schweitzer identified that process by which this reduction takes place.[13] The forces that Schweitzer traces as the collapse of civilization may well have culminated in World War I.
           Schweitzer anticipated the work of Karl Jaspers, C. Wright Mills and Herbert Marcuse, thinkers who flourished five decades after he began his thinking on civilization. Karl Jaspers reflected upon the end of Western civilization in Man In The Modern Age, likening it to the end of Hellenism before the dark ages.[14] For Jaspers, the current phase in modernity (the 1920s) marked the turning point from human pursuits such as discursive reasoning, thought, understanding, and artistic production, to the dominance of a highly organized super-structure based upon reducing content to "technique." Art becomes "mere amusement and pleasure (instead of an emblem of transcendence), science becomes mere concern for technical utility (instead of the satisfaction of a primary will to know).[15] He warned that the growing tendency to "wrap the world in apparatus," the building of a giant inter-connected infrastructure based entirely on calculation, would have a deleterious effect upon humanity. According to Jaspers, society faces the extinction of those qualities and aspirations which have always defined humanity, such as rational discourse and ethical norms. These warnings seem quaint when one considers that they were made before regular air travel in the days of radio. It may be that at each stage in technical development, society becomes more habituated to technique, closed in a technological womb that grows ever more content with closed possibilities for qualitative change. The contemporary litany of dangers, ecological destruction of the planet, the failure of the educational system, growing violence, and governmental control, should bare out the realization that society is complacent in the face of growing peril. Jasper's notion that discursive reasoning was being replaced by technique anticipates the work of C. Wright Mills in the 1950s.


[1] Ibid.
[2] Picco della Mirandola, Oration on the Dignity of man, quoted in Nick Bostrom, A History of Transhumanist Though. Pdf  accessed 1/1/14originally published in The Journal of Evolution and Technology, vol 14, issue 1, April 2005., 2.
Bostrom is a philosopher who teaches at Oxford and the edition of Mirandola used is:Chicago, Gateway Editions  1956.
[3] Ibid, 5.
[4] James Hughes, Citizen Cyborg: Why Democratic Societies Must Respond to the Redesigned Human of the Future. Cambridge Mass: West View Press, 2004, 155
Huges is a sociologist and bioethicist. He’s been involved in the transhumaist movement since before 2004, he was ordained a Buddhist monk in the 80s.
[5] Nick Bostrom, “Ethical Issues for the 21st  Century,” Philosophical DocumentationCenter Press, Ed. Frederick Adams,  2003, 3-14.
[6] Ibid.
[7] Ibid., 4.
[8] find
[9] Bostrom, Ethical Issues..Op Cit., 8.
[10] Leslie Fain, “The Surprising spread and Cultural Impact of Transhumanism.”Catholic World Report, Oct 3, (2013). Blong, online   accessed 1/3/14.
[11] Zoltan Istvan, “I am an Atheist Therefore I am a Transhumaist.” Huff Post The Blog,12/5/13. on line
Istvan Is a self proclaimed “visionary.”
[12] Albert Schweitzer, The Quest of the Historical Jesus: A Critical Study of Its Progress from Reimarus to Wrede. New York: MacMillan, originally 1906, MacMillan paperbacks 1961, eighth printing, 1973.
[13] J.L. Hinman, “Albert Schweitzer On The Death of Civilization.” Negations: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Social Criticism. No 3. (Winter 1998). On line copy, accessed 1/4/14.
See also: Albert Schweitzer, The Philosophy of Civilization. Translated C.T. Campion, Buffalo, New York: Prometheus Books. 1980 (original German pulbication 1923). The work is divided into two sections, the "Decay and Restoration of Civilization," and "Ethics and Civilization." Unwin has published the first section as an independent volume entitled The Decay and Restoration of Civilization.
[14] Jaspers, Karl. Man In The Modern Age. New York: Doubleday, 1957, 20. 
[15] Ibid., 137.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

In Honor of Ray Hinman's Birthday (June 20,19-56-Jan 24, 2014)


buy the book

Also be aware I open debate on CARD blog with Bradly Bowen of Secular Outpost in the topic of historicity of Jesus.

Ray Hinman was my Twin Brother and he wasw a totally brilliant poet

Ray Hinman Returns the strength of History and culture to language. Unashamed of thought,uninhibited by the current fashion of poetic anti-intellectualism,Hinman speaks from a foundation of tradition freshens his structures with the touch and nature. Definitely modern, he unites civilization across time, refuses to surrender to the triviality of high technology,though hints that our era stands out in defiance of human greatness. His rhythms flow with the love of language's music, like the Whitman whose ghost tours the city, he finds in the urban tableau the clues to what we search for in clustering into cities.

The Ex-Missionary Learns Mexico

After the rain we came into the low
country, the hills unrolled beneath us,
pitted with aroieas, green aloe vera plants concealed basins where water stood;
hidden from high ground like secret lakes.
We climbed from our horses and looked into
a pond, our faces shining against sky
and cloud.

There is nothing holy about hidden things;
chance has it's own way of breaking monotony
as one mile slinks
into the dust of another, but in this place
(out of mill ions allover the desert)
what seemed so dry from the trail's rim lay entangled with fertil ity, floating
in a bath of sky.

For years I had learned the desert from train windows, it's beauty no more than swirl ing dust, but when our faces rippled over brown roots,
dark as cinnabar, shooting into leafy green ... the vistas around us rose in vapour and begged

for a drink, in the distance a vulture called, and hundreds of zacadas; the hil Is rose
above us like domes.

Whitman's Ghost Takes a Tour of the City

The goddess sits in the axhandle park:
she would give more grain, but corn won't grow
in our streets.
The trees can lift their arms skyward,
but their hands and hair sprout flames.
Indidolons time,
when the old shade goes loafing (though evening
can't come any closer). Could he manage disembodiment
before now, the fire of the flower would still
be there by chance.
But you, knowing the richer reds
and deeper blues appear briefly at dusk
then withdraw into their own flame...
He goes out at evening, shirt long, baggy as a coat,
his white beard flows from the sack-like face,
the outstretched hat-brim;
he has made himself bewildered: Where are the poets
chanting to the multitude? The headlong, vulgar, robust
freedoms of the crowd? Is there only you?
Bleating out this quick-flaring image? You chant
the gawk-shuffle, art-patter, and wonder how the plant
ever let you in. The inferno of the city blazes
around us, we detail its hidden lights.

Hobos Near Tacoma

Bridge above the gorge,
lights of tightwadded Tacoma.

A Chaff blown state,
sunlight yellow, wheat field yellow.

Everything gritty is also smooth:
riverbank, bedsoil, rescue mission grit.

Like polished stone or sanded wood,
the view from any part of town
takes in the polish of lyrical land.

The bridge spans the gorge,
the trail leads to the bank like perdition.

Fifteen campfires pinpoint the bank,
even the stars lack shelter in Tacoma.

Our Cities Vanish

Our cities will vanish
the way they were built,
in flurries of greed and seduction.
Dallas for instance,
was founded by Appalachian
lean men with gaunt faces
and a burning in their eyes.
Now another Dallas has sprung up
where they built,
a Mecca for the mercenaries
wrapped in steel glitter,
wrapped in gold glitter, burning as brightly
as their lust.
Practicality is their monument
to their fathers.
the faith of Pariahs:
the gleam of a bauble pawed by cats.
When pressed
they will admit truth is beautiful.
for instance,
is even more beautiful
when it's mysteries are revealed, and so
they still admire the moon,
praise it,
for remaining such a worthy objective
for their calculations
of trajectory,
they admire Einstein, who "thought up some good physics,"
that will allow them to build other Dallases
on distant planets.
eternity is PROfound.
And yet,
the only eternity they believe in
is the eternal distance between classes,
between races,
between failure and success.

Our cities will vanish
the way they were built,
and return even more mysteriously.


Ray Hinman:

Born in Dallas Texas, along with his twin brother Joe, June 20, 1956. Their Uncle was James D. Harman noted "Beat" poet of the 50s and leader on the West Coast in the "ban he bomb movement." "Uncle Jimmy" as we was called as an influence upon his nephew's style of poetry, along with Wallace Stevens, Yates and Keats.

Hinman grew up in Dallas, he drooped out of R.L. Turner High school his sophomore year in order to receive his GED that same year. He lived on his own for a time, traveled extensively across the United states by hitchhiking. On one trip he went up the West Coast to Vancouver and another trip he went up the East Coast to Montreal. He also spent extensive time camping and living off the land in the American Southwest.

He attended The University of North Texas, studying anthropology. He was a major local organizing in the Central America Movement of the 80s. He worked as an editor for the Negations Institute and their Academic Journal Negations.Throughout the years he has published poems in many journals and other publications such as InterstateWell Spring, the AmebaThe WordFickle Musesand other such publications. He's read his poetry in public in Austin and Dallas.

(more on Ray Hinman)

Born: Dallas, Texas, 1956, with his twin brother Joe.

Education: University of Texas At Arlington, University of North Texas (Denton)

Occupations: Market Researcher; Paid campaign worker; poetry editor (Academic Journal Negations) and fellow of Negations Institute.

Life Experience: Mr. Hinman has lived in Dallas, Arlington, and Austin Texas. He's traveled extensively around North America, Mexico, and Central America.

1970's In the early 70's, as a highschool sophemore Mr. Hinman worked as a volunteer in for the McGovern Campaign in the senator's 1972 Presidential bid. As a young man he hitchhiked from Dallas to Colorado. In a Second trip, up the West Coast to Van Couver. In a Third trip, hitchhiked up the East coast to Montreal. He also Attended University of Texas at Arlington.

1980's lived in Dallas and Austin. In this decade he travailed in Mexico. It was in this decade that he had his career as a Market Researcher in Dallas,Paid campaign worker in Austin, and attended University of North Texas in Denton. From about 86 to 90 a major portion of his life was occupied with volunteer political organizing over the issue of Central America. Mr. Hinman worked with the infamous CISPES group (Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador) of Dallas which is known to have been spied upon by an FBI informant, and Mr. Hinman may have been target of surveillance.

1990's: Mr. Hinman worked in the anti-Gulf War coalition in the early 90's. He settled in Dallas and began to work for the Negation Institute, first as the contributing Poetry editor for their journal Negations, then as researcher. In the late 90's he spent several years providing full time care for his parents until their deaths.In the 90's that he wrote some of his best work.

After the death of his parents, Mr. Hinman withdrew from society and lived a reclusive existence devoted to study.

Ray died of a massive heart attack on Jan 24, 2014. He was57.


The Amoeba
Well Spring
Negations: an Inter disciplinary Journal of social Criticism
A Rule of Three(chapbook). 

1 comment:

Kristen said...
"There is nothing holy about hidden things," the poem says, but it's as if this is only what the missionary tells himself, all the while experiencing the holiness in hidden things which he tries to deny.

The hills at the end of the poem feel like the domes of a cathedral after this unexpected baptism of the soul.