Catholic vs. Atheist - 2016-09-11 - Renaud

Author Recorded Sunday September 11th, 2016

There are 47 episodes in the Versus:Atheist series.

Recorded February 9th, 2019

Catholic vs. Atheist - 2019-02-09 - Greg

Recorded September 11th, 2016

Catholic vs. Atheist - 2016-09-11 - Renaud

I met Renaud at a 'Skeptics in the Pub' meetup, which is run by an Atheist group. I wanted to interview him because when I first met him he was very aggressive. He turned out to be very gentle and calm. He was patient with me. Nice guy.


Catholic vs. Atheist - 2016-09-11 - Renaud

Author Recorded July 30th, 2016

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hi I'm Alan oh and you're listening to Catholic versus areas the way I like to start is just have you introduce yourself talk a little bit about who you are what you believe and why you believe it sure I my name is van oh I don't really believe anything supernatural I think the way that we know things is by studying a real world in general it has to go through our senses or two machines that we use to measure the real world and then we see the measurements with our senses you know that's what science is about science is about studying the real world in a methodical way it's not always possible to do it in general like in your everyday life you're going to want to just observe the real world and try to deduce what the real world is like do you know the difference between deduction and induction shoots deduction is a top-down logical cartoon where we use pure reason right in induction we observe patterns and we impose a rule or a conclusion on the pattern and the philosopher David Hume said that there's a problem with induction which is they can never know with absolute certainty yeah and I don't pretend to know anything with absolute certainty when we make decisions we don't wait until we have absolute certainty about the state of things we make decisions based on the best information that we have so you may try to get more information if it's possible sometimes we just don't have enough information to make an informed decision but the earth is bigger than my head do you have absolute confidence in those sorts of statements about relation the earth is bigger than your head according to everything I couldn't observe I can look at your head directly I can look at the urge and you know I can observe directly that the earth is bigger than your head but I don't know maybe I'm in the matrix and yeah you know and like it's all Venusian or something like that there's no scientific basis for positing the existence of reality or of the alarm what are we all in the matrix or whatever it's real I don't see the difference because it's their world that I experience right the difference is that if the world is your creation and only you exist then you don't need to worry about heaven and hell because you are God Almighty and you have nothing that can ever hurt you well I mean I can try it for my will alone to change the world but that doesn't seem to work so you would conclude that the real world is real and that you are not according to everything again I can observe yeah it seems to me the case yeah how do you feel about deism there's a first cause there's a prime mover he got the whole shebang going he created the universe I'm not convinced you not gonna know I wouldn't claim that it's false okay but I like what we need evidence like why I posit that there was a being there do you believe that the universe is undergoing dissipation and approaching a heat death that's the current scientific world yeah explore the expansion of bird and university sure slowly slowly dying if time in the past is infinite the heat death would have already arrived it hasn't arrived there photos from mad necessary you know if there's infinite time behind us would enough time of elapsed for this heat death that's impending to arrive no yes no that's not how it works we need a beginning mathematically know mathematically yes because if you acknowledge now that this universe will dissipate such that life is not tenable human life and malaria sure is untenable as is in translational sure put it from the laws of physics that crab served that's what we can predict but we don't know if like maybe the Big Bang was the result of a prior state of the universe which is what you believe right because you believe in God so we call I noting like that I know I could I don't believe that so according to you the prior state of the universe was God no there was no universe before God created but God existed right but it was not the universe okay it's not a creation so how do you define universe creation so you inject a being to your definition of the you know the greater injects a creation I'm a creature I don't inject God God indexing when we talk about creation we imply that someone yeah so you're kind of begging the question when you call the universe creation you're like you're not saying by definition it was treated because it's a creation so I could define it like the universe as the result of the pre universe or something alike which is what you believe you believe there was something before the universe because you but if it was good before the universe right we don't believe there's time for matter before you but if only cuz there's only got the being whose essences existence so so so it's not a block of wood he's not a stone he's not a human is since his existence in essence is existence he just exists okay without a cause he is uncaused because you know I could posit for example a unicorn that is pink a phaser horn and that exists and by definition it exists therefore it exists no but we are contingent beings we depend on our existence depends on something else other things the fact that you exist and the fact that you acknowledge that eventually human life will be untenable in the universe because he bets entropy okay sure and there is a certain number of years or a certain amount of time that is finite which will accomplish that completion of life and the fact that that amount of time has not yet passed and your your your means there isn't against your kind of suggesting there's a certain amount of time from the beginning but let's talk about Matt's now there's a finite number of whole numbers between 0 & 3 right that doesn't mean that there isn't any pinche are whole numbers below 0 there's still an affinity a whole numbers below 0 what tells you that the universe is not doesn't have a cause other than God that is not an infinity of causes other than God let's explore this idea of multiverses okay when I talk about the universe yeah as a Catholic if there are multiverses those multiverses are part of my universe the whole reason that we talk about a universe is because we're uniting everything into soup when when we talk about their heat death of the universe it concentrates on the laws that we observe here but if there is a kind of super universe in which has different laws it it might not have those laws it might be again that the Big Bang was the beginning it might be that there was a beginning prior to that which is also 49 or there might be no begin it might be caused by a multiverse switches itself infinite we can rule out the possibility that the super-universe as you would call it has no beginning in time we can rule that out why because we're still here given the fact that things are unraveling if you want to put it again if you talk about it again if you talk about numbers you know before zero there's an infinity of numbers you know an affinity and yet we still haven't gotten to tree right I want to ask you about cause and effect how important is that to science my understanding my Leman understanding of quantum physics is that there's phenomenon that are purely random if you're willing to accept randomness true randomness that to me is more absurd than my acceptance of God the first okay you don't see a problem with embracing an uncaused effect no although I couldn't prove that that isn't some kind of hidden cost to them okay the statistical approach is only a tool that we use because of our ignorance let's imagine that your work as a scientist as we tell yo sure would you find it useful to adopt what we call God's point of view the gods idea it eliminates things like the Copenhagen interpretation in Schrodinger's cat there's a philosophical interpretation of that whereby they say the cat is neither alive nor dead until we observe it when we observe it then that probability function collapses into one state or the other but if we adopt God's point of view he sees if the cat is alive or dead he sees if that poisonous bomb has exploded or not and he sees through that black box that we humans can't see through so he doesn't need probability waves which collapse upon observation because he's we observing everything Einstein had this worldview Einstein said God does not play dice seeing God doesn't play dice you know that's just making a statement you're actually prove there's no proof it's a philosophical question it's a worldview I don't have a prob you your way well if you're if you're willing to say in principle that probability is only a tool because of our ignorance and you do have a worldview you have a rational sane world view I tear about what works if you have a model that allows you to make predictions and you make prediction and they come true that's the model that works scientist science it works but what this podcast is about is about philosophy and slowed ideas and it's about ultimate reality and does God exist or not and your interpretation of the philosophy of science will predispose you to moving towards or away from God because you know from my point of view it's not a problem at all question is there good or not their aim it is for you well I'm sure there's for you it is for you to be just don't know it you don't wreck a you don't recognize it because either God is God or you or god it's a major difference two major difference how about the hypothesis of this such a thing as karma advisor I believe in karma karma just means cause effect so I believe in cause and effect but let's talk a little bit about this unicorn okay or the spaghetti monster or the things that the hardcore atheist like to put in place of God okay like Santa Claus Easter Bunny whatever it is or the Greek gods are Apollo or whatever you want to talk about just pick some stupid thing and replace God's good thing oh yeah that's me relative to god it's stupid okay it's just so everything is stupid relative to go so let's go with unicorns what would it take for you to believe in unicorns I it's not that freaky actually it's not that weird it's true it's actually not that weird I mean different claims cannot have you know we did we don't necessarily meet me that I as much evidence to prove them like if you tell again if you if you tell me yesterday you you you you were wearing a red t-shirt and you show me a picture you yesterday with a red t-shirt and I'm definitely gonna believe in Photoshop I actually actually if you if you just tell me where wearing a t-shirt yesterday that's pretty gonna be good enough for me but if you if you tell me that you can you say ports I'm not gonna believe you so like they're you know the ordinary claims extraordinary exactly exactly the claim that you exist give me evidence proportional to that there are two possibilities you are self existent I know um I don't see how you can go from exists to therefore god exists with a leap of faith I don't do that yes you do or at least I try not you do that you take the leap of faith that I exist I don't take your leader paper I see you but you know that you exist right yeah sure that trumps any sensory data that's coming into you you have to be alive to see me the central fact for you is that you are that you're alive that is the there again again that's that I mean it's it's hard to argue with the cards on that but I don't see where to go from there they're usually it's kind of a dead then from there you're stuck there yeah you have to take you have to take a leap of faith and say reality is real well I can't walk I just deal with what I have like I experience the world I expand my own thoughts and I make sense all of them because that's all but how you can throw away century data you can't throw away your own existence I catch really true web sensory data actually you can deny them I can't ignite some of them but I can't really deny them as a block and go somewhere from there have you met a Buddhist do you know that the Buddhist denies his only distance I know I didn't know that and the reason they do that is because they are confronted with the sensory data that you and I are confronted with and instead of taking a leap of faith into reality and saying that reality is real let's get on with science they say it's just the dream of the one mind that's what Buddhism is so if you look at the Buddhists on the one end of the spectrum and you look at me a Catholic on the other end of the spectrum the Buddhist denies his senses and says only God is real mm-hmm I say that God is real the real world is real science is good and we can't just pretend like the world doesn't exist right so there are two extremes they're both weird but on that spectrum where would you place yourself you as an individual where would you place yourself closer to the Catholic or closer to the Buddhist you're closer to the Catholic your nozzles right up against us indistinguishable basically ah on that point I'm not sure on the point of acknowledging that reality is real you are indistinguishable from whatever they're better you don't deny reality what does science say about the Mayan not the brain the mind the mind that is really much very much linked to the brain in the sense that if you if you if you damage the brain it might change the mind change your mind that's pretty clear that whenever we talk about anything related to the mind it's all about neurology yeah now do you think that brain activity follows cause and effects yeah yeah from the most part I mean there might be some random and I may not give you a hint okay if you say that it's not determined one hundred percent by causing effect then you are irrationally embracing the supernatural I don't see that randomness you admitted to me earlier has to be an admission of ignorance we need statistical methods because we're ignorant even though we can't see the cause for every effect in principle every effect does have a cause that's what I would say and for you to say something different would mean that you're embracing an irrational supernatural I don't see why every should this principle because your reject God you reject the supernatural I don't see how in principle we could we should reject the possibility that are things that are absolutely random that are that they just don't have any i know i don't know kasi yeah i don't see why we should check that is i mean it might be a name for that it's called a miracle right where there's no natural cause there's a supernatural cause it's called a miracle so if you say so are you open to the possibility of the supernatural if nobody can study it it's kind of a just an idea but if the scientists are speculating that there may be an uncaused affect us miss randomness that you talked about it's not subject to sinus why not because oh you're Noble as an effect i Jes okay so they are acknowledging something that is beyond nature his nature works with cause and effect do you understand this is this is the whole point yeah but but but I don't see why we should bust late one world order I think what really counts in science is really like what you can observe what predictions you can make one principle that's often used in science is when you have two models that are exactly as prediction and one is more complex than the other you're going to use the simpler one is Newtonian physics obsolete now that we have the new physics not completely because it can fill be used in many situations the reason that we have quantum physics even though Newtonian physics works is because we need that complex system to explain the data right but it's not more complex than necessary it's complex because the observation is coming what I would say to you is that the Catholic world view with all its theology all of its dogmas all of its rules and regulations everything that the Catholic Church gives the faithful is falling Occam's razor it is the simplest explanation for the data given the data or 10 me that's why you're not a Catholic obviously now talk to me a little bit about my faith any questions you have when you talk about Georgian you talk about all kind of things that are outside of what we can work with do you think I use reason in my faith do you yeah well the do you you you postulate the premise that there is no uncaused cause and my it's a premise but I don't really see you know I don't say there's no one to ask cause I say that there is an uncaused cause that's my god the uncaused cause is my god that's why I mean you still postulate something and I don't see why you would was sleep I didn't work postulate that then I will exact relates to what what you know what what I have what can we use or what what it can deliver let's make it very concrete and real for you I want you to picture for me if you will some relative that you love and cherish but who has passed away from my perspective reality is that your beloved is destined for a really horrible outcome are really wonderful out so it is ultimately the most real thing the most real thing you mean it would be the biggest concern yeah if you believe it no not if you believe it if it's reality if it's really better if you believe it mm-hmm funny people in hell didn't believe in turn if it's real if he'll is real okay let's post it an alternative hypothesis maybe it is really that after to die if you're a Christian you go to inhale and if you're not good question you go to paralyze does that make sense well well we apply reason to that we can apply it just as much as your hypothesis that a good Christian girl I see the difference between worshipping a unicorn and worshiping God Almighty because God Almighty is the only necessary being he is the first cause but the unicorn isn't and this is the same thing with positing that Christians go to hell and non-christians go to heaven it's like saying that the Unicorn is God but he's not the first cause and he's not on again you're describing a lot of things that are outside of everything and I can observe anything again test anything I can you know it's interesting that tell in heaven are placed after a tie in a time are they I cannot observe are their way which is that give testimony are there witnesses that give testimony that hell is real heaven is real yeah and also witnesses that give incompatible testimonies there's no end to the lies right and the delusions there's no into Marcus sure principle we could create a legend right now well yeah sure get rich I'm your God give me your money we could do that but what we're examining is the evidence is there evidence do people talk about God they talk about heaven do they talk about how do they talk about what it's like do they talk about how to get there do they talk about how to avoid hell do they talk about sin and they talk about virtue and vice and the people of different religions that talk about everything that are part of their region but if we look at the mainstream of monotheism Christianity Judaism and Islam hmm why would I focus on that I focus on that because that is the dominant and predominant trend of religion if we look at that do you not see major trend lines reinforcing each other talking about basic truths of monotheistic religious people were not for the most part haven't been completely isolated so like people have traveled from region to region since the beginning of history mean people shared ideas and stories so the fact that some ideas could be in one religion and also in another is not necessary that surprising if it's true I mean yeah it makes a lot of sense but if it's positive also makes sense sense ideas travel is it worth risking you're gonna you're gonna ask us later yeah yeah is it worth the risk to you too amateur it's really that much of a risk I mean maybe maybe if I believe in god I'm gonna get punished forever and how and you know do you see why I reject that you know what it's if someone comes to me and I can say you have a rich family member in Kenya and it just passed away and you can be kind of millionaire if you just give me a thousand-dollar of them I don't buy it more if it's more money like if they see oh but it's not a million it's a billion-dollar I'm not gonna give them money more the fact that they promise a bigger reward doesn't make it more convincing do you not see through that ruse and see that they just want to get your thousand dollars uh yeah and i see that you want to convince me that that that God exists what would I get out of that it's kind of part of your religion to convince people but even if it's not it I see that people in general tend to like convincing others that they are right so obviously most people feel that they did get something out of convincing others that they are right about what do you think that I think my motivation is I think that you think your motivation is to save me from hell do you believe that if you convince me to join your religion you might say veep on how we have to be humble as humans like we can plant a seed but only God can make it grow I know so I could be at the very best I could be instrumental in your conversion but it's between you and God put me a big part of what it is to be humble is to admit when we don't know something and like what are the things that you think that I should admit I don't know that I claim that I do know some of the big things okay whatever the universe is eternal or whether it has a beginning that's a big one uh I'm willing to admit in principle that I may be wrong about that Richard I maybe God you may be good all right do you think in principle I could beat god no no why not it's gonna be me it's not my point of view I can deny your existence I cannot deny my existence that's what solid season is you from your if you exist if you really exist you can deny my existence right okay yeah if I deny my senses and yeah so from your perspective you might be gone but is it possible in principle for you to deny that you exist I'm not sure I don't think it is it it kind of doesn't really make sense it's kind of what Descartes said is that in denying it you're asserting it there for you just if someone why'd you say I can formulate a way in which I could think we're all existing and I would be open-minded and listen to what you have to say and if you're right it's kind of weird what are some of the things that you find weird and unusual about Catholicism do you think that the cracker literally becomes a buddy of prize yes you do yes why because the church tells me so that's the only also i mean if you were to convince me to believe in Catholicism then you would have to convince me to believe everything the church so yes yeah good luck with that baby steps finish the first cause cause and effect 3 well this is so so if you can get me into drugs maybe it would be easier yeah a brain damage that would work too I don't have a lot of hope that I'm gonna convert anybody I don't have a lot of hope that I'm gonna decon virtue either so what the conversation was fun if you like it will do if you think it's got some questions as piano tell all you gotta do it gotta do it all you got to do is

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