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Posts Made By: Paul Kammueller

February 22, 2003 06:52 AM Forum: Religion

Ultimate Reality

Posted By Paul Kammueller

Suppose my last two posts show it, tired of the evolution / creation debate which always seems to come back to the same old "God of the gaps" argument which IMHO is the weakest of all philosophical arguments which is why it pains me to see it so often used. Of course, current gaps in science, like past ones, are doomed to be filled by new discoveries sooner or later.

How about the ultimate problem, the Quantum Barrier, the fact that observation influences the observed to the point where objective reality cannot be determined. Unfortunate side effect of the laws of nature, or God's fingerprint on a universe which veils ultimate reality from mortal eyes and evidence that the reality we see is not the 'real' one? Something very weird and theosophical has always struck me about the quantum uncertanty - reality problems and seems strangely in tune with gnostic Christian interpretations of reality.

February 25, 2003 07:38 PM Forum: Religion

Pre-existence Paradox of Consciousness

Posted By Paul Kammueller

Just stumbled across a thought problem, wanted to bounce it off you guys:

Suppose you're God, in deep pre-history before you made the Universe or anything. You're just a pure state of spirit or consciousness or some such thing, with no "stuff" created yet.

Are you truly conscious if there's nothing around you to be conscious of? You might say you would have the inner dialogue of your own mind, but what could you possibly think if you have never perceived anything yet?

February 28, 2003 06:06 PM Forum: Religion

Stubborness of Politics

Posted By Paul Kammueller

It looks to me like Herb's attempt to migrate politics to this forum has failed. Maybe he ought to just rename the OT forum "Politics" LOL!

March 1, 2003 06:14 AM Forum: Religion

Re: Question (answer with a question)

Posted By Paul Kammueller

The answer ultimately depends upon whether it is proper to judge one based on one's deeds, or one's intentions or motives. Or some combination of both.

What is interesting is that, to the external observer, they all did good. Clearly the third person had more pure "good intentions" and so maybe had more good 'in his heart'. But on the other hand, if someone pulls you out of a burning building you thank them, you don't ask them why.

March 3, 2003 05:14 PM Forum: Religion

Artificial Intelligence and 'consciousness'

Posted By Paul Kammueller

I think this has the potential to become a serious philosophical issue sometime this century. As artificial intelligence progresses to the point where we have virtual 'thinking machines' could there ever be a point at which we might say a machine is 'conscious' in the self-aware sense that most people understand the word? Could it ever have a 'spirit' or 'soul' or some such thing? Or would it always be, at best, simply a reproduction, a 'semblance' of actual consciousness, no matter how far it progressed? And how would we ever know the difference?

And what if the machines find religion?

March 6, 2003 04:57 PM Forum: Off Topic Discussions

Re: Funny Colin Powell Story

Posted By Paul Kammueller

"only 13% of all Americans... they are all Marines"

A military commander's dream: an army of 38 million Marines!

Great story, thanks! :-D

March 14, 2003 03:58 AM Forum: Religion

Good Grief!

Posted By Paul Kammueller

Things were getting really slow on this forum so I take time out to work on my latest telescope project. I'm gone for a day and all hell breaks loose around here.

March 24, 2003 06:59 PM Forum: Off Topic Discussions

Re: Iraqi Search and Rescue

Posted By Paul Kammueller

Many of the hard-core Iraqi military who have been employed under Saddam are no doubt guilty of a litany of war crimes and human rights violations and know they could get nailed on it if they are defeated and rounded up. Indeed it could get ugly, as an enemy with nothing to lose can be a ferocious thing.

March 26, 2003 05:06 AM Forum: Religion

Poll: Where will the war end (choose one)

Posted By Paul Kammueller

(a) Baghdad -- #1 in the 'Evil Axis', led by Saddam Hussein, ruthless dictator and rotten speechmaker. Has chemical and possibly biological weapons. We get rid of him and go home.

(b) Teheran -- #2 in the 'Evil Axis', location convenient to Baghdad, radical Islamic government (currently unpopular and possibly vulnerable to overthrow) openly funds and supports many terrorist organizations which routinely attack the West, now well along in developing nukes along with a medium-range ballistic missile capable of reaching Israel -- on all counts a greater threat than #1

(c) Pyongyang -- #3 in the 'Evil Axis', bellicose leadership, has nukes, building more, also an ICBM capable of reaching the western U.S. -- immediate regional threat to Asian friends including Japan, capable of intercontinental threat to U.S. -- by current military measures more of a threat than either #1 or #2.

(d) ____________ (make your own)

March 30, 2003 11:18 PM Forum: Religion

Re: New Forum

Posted By Paul Kammueller

Hey Bill, Herb's had a hard enough time coaxing the political posts to move here off the OT forum, To try to move it a step further would probably just result in war posts occurring on 3 forums instead of the current two.