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Controversial Religion thread

CGiuliano

Lowly Undergrad
This thread is not FE related whatsoever, but QuantNet seems to be a diverse community filled with many bright minds. So, I ask your thoughts on a subject I've given much of my own.

Why is it that otherwise reasonable and logical people can be backed into dangerously absurd corners when it comes to their views on religion? In mathematics a contradiction is proof of failure, yet the human mind seems to stray from this logic: housing two down right contradictory ideas, and all in infrangible confidence.
 
Religion isn't mathematics (although I may be wrong on that one). I know what point you are making but some things just can't be proven or reasoned because of our conceptual limitations, but yet people try. Perhaps you've been talking to people who haven't given much thought to their beliefs and can't use logical arguments to defend them because they have been so busy studying numerical analysis and stochastic calculus. You are spot on about this topic not being FE related at all, but then again, belief and financial modeling might be more related than I thought.
 

CGiuliano

Lowly Undergrad
Religion isn't mathematics (although I may be wrong on that one). I know what point you are making but some things just can't be proven or reasoned because of our conceptual limitations, but yet people try. Perhaps you've been talking to people who haven't given much thought to their beliefs and can't use logical arguments to defend them because they have been so busy studying numerical analysis and stochastic calculus. You are spot on about this topic not being FE related at all, but then again, belief and financial modeling might be more related than I thought.

Do you know what point I'm trying to make?

If you read my post more carefully you'll find that I wasn't looking for formal proof of anything. Maybe its my fault for not supplementing with an example:

The Christian view of a loving caring and merciful God vs. Numbers 31.
 
Why? Well...since I'm not so eloquent, I'll let Shining Time Station's Mr. Conductor explain.

YouTube - George Carlin: The Ten Commandments
YouTube - George Carlin: Religion is Bullshit

As to why I keep the flag flying (awesome song by the way), well, because there's only 14 million of us Jews in the world. And many more people that resent us, hate us, want us to all die off, or are actively trying to kill us.

And it's been going on throughout history. In fact, all Jewish holidays except the new year and Yom Kippur can be summarized in nine words:

"They tried to kill us. We won. Let's eat."

So this is why it is the duty of every Jew to marry another Jew, and have Jewish children, and to raise them extremely smart.

Though since Judaism is more than a religion (in fact, only 27% of Israeli Jews are actually religious, though Shlomi knows more about this than I do as to how true this is), defining what Judaism is and isn't going forward may itself be changing, and considering that if I can be an agnostic Jew, I don't get why so many others can't, either.

And speaking of quants and religion...

Here's some nice trivia regarding the intersection of the two: Jim Simons and Emanuel Derman are both Jewish.
 
Do you know what point I'm trying to make?

If you read my post more carefully you'll find that I wasn't looking for formal proof of anything. Maybe its my fault for not supplementing with an example:

The Christian view of a loving caring and merciful God vs. Numbers 31.


I know you weren't looking for formal proofs, who would. I figured you were referring to Christianity anyway. Try the Quran instead.
 

Bastian Gross

German Mathquant
Buddhism and Science

Let me first give a quote by the well-known physicist and mathematician Albert Einstein:

The religion of the future will be a cosmic religion. It should transcend personal God and avoid dogma and theology. Covering both the natural and the spiritual, it should be based on a religious sense arising from the experience of all things natural and spiritual as a meaningful unity.
Buddhism answers this description
. If there is any religion that could scoop with modern scientific neeed it would be Buddhism


I'm practicing Buddhist (Diamonadway; Karma-Kagyu), so I known and Buddha himself said:
Whenever a (scientific and/or mindful) contradiction is logical, a Buddhist has to adopt this proof of failure, even if Buddha himself said something different!
 
I think it is pretty much futile to find a logical reasoning to a religion. Science and religion don't mix. If you want to find a logical reasoning to life, pick up a science book instead of Bible/Quran/Gita.
For me, there is something of value to be read each holy book, and I see it more of a "self-help" guide to happy living from which I can pick somethings up.
 

GoIllini

Market Crises= Gray Hair
Do you know what point I'm trying to make?

If you read my post more carefully you'll find that I wasn't looking for formal proof of anything. Maybe its my fault for not supplementing with an example:

The Christian view of a loving caring and merciful God vs. Numbers 31.
The God of the New Testament takes a very different view of human beings than the God of the OT. Possibly because death means something different in the NT.

Why is it that otherwise reasonable and logical people can be backed into dangerously absurd corners when it comes to their views on religion? In mathematics a contradiction is proof of failure, yet the human mind seems to stray from this logic: housing two down right contradictory ideas, and all in infrangible confidence.
Why should religion be subject to reason? We already know that the part of our brain that understands and interprets reality is already inherently irrational, and in fact, there's a logical paradox at the heart of the universe. When it comes to understanding how existence came into being and why we are here, it's impossible to have a perfectly logical or causal explanation.
 

alain

Older and Wiser
here are some quotes from Steven Weinberg (Physics Nobel Prize 1979)

"With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."

Here is another one.
"...anything that we scientists can do to weaken the hold of religion should be done, and may in fact, in the end, be our greatest contribution to civilization."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NcnTRvz87hc

Draw your own conclusions.
 

bob

Faculty (Undercover)
"I have never read any theologian who claims God is particularly interested in religion, anyway."
--Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek
 

Bastian Gross

German Mathquant
here are some quotes from Steven Weinberg (Physics Nobel Prize 1979)

"With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."

That is a very clever quote! Thanks alain!

---------- Post added at 12:53 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:44 PM ----------

Everybody, who is logic-minded, clever, studied and literate, has to avoid (blatant) materialism, absolutely.
 
Judaism is a religion... or you have some other definition?

Technically it's a bunch of people who came from Judea and Samaria, and originally, yes, it was a religion.

But now, it's grown more into a culture. After all, so many Jews are scientists, engineers, mathematicians, technologists, etc... and naturally, their professions clearly put the notion of God into question, to say the least. Hence, far less than a majority of Israeli Jews are actually religious and observant.

However, quite a few of our holidays are not religious, but historic. And can be summed up in nine words:

"They tried to kill us. We won. Let's eat."

Purim: Persian empire. Haman tried to get all the Jews killed. He failed.

Passover: Egyptian empire. The Pharaoh tried to get all the Jews killed. He got drowned in the red sea.

Hannukah: Around 200 BC. Antiochus tried to subjugate/kill the Jews and razed the temple. He got defeated anyway.

Yom Hashoah: No special eats on this day (holocaust remembrance day), but still seven words. They tried to kill us. We won. (The Nazis are gone, and the Jews are among th world's elite.)

Basically, since a lot of Jews are believing in God less and less, Judaism has adapted so that they can have their cake and eat it too.
 

Bastian Gross

German Mathquant
Recommend Books on Buddhism and Science

Here is another quote by Albert Einstein:
Science without religion is lame,
Religion without science ist blind.


Here is a beginner book by the Gelugpa Dalai Lama in that issue:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0767920813/

Other recommend books are:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0231123353/http://www.amazon.com/dp/0231138350/
http://www.amazon.com/dp/1400080797/
http://www.amazon.com/dp/1434332241/
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0801870380/

Also recommend but more in the pure logical and academically proven way:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0742547922/
http://www.amazon.com/dp/1572246456/

For a short overview:
Buddhism and science - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
Technically it's a bunch of people who came from Judea and Samaria, and originally, yes, it was a religion.

But now, it's grown more into a culture. After all, so many Jews are scientists, engineers, mathematicians, technologists, etc... and naturally, their professions clearly put the notion of God into question, to say the least. Hence, far less than a majority of Israeli Jews are actually religious and observant.
.


Hinduism is more a culture and a way of life too. It is a very inclusive religion.
 
This thread is not FE related whatsoever, but QuantNet seems to be a diverse community filled with many bright minds. So, I ask your thoughts on a subject I've given much of my own.

Not FE related?? I wonder how many quants pray for their stocks to go up(down).....
 

Bastian Gross

German Mathquant
Do not pray! Take Action!

Not FE related?? I wonder how many quants pray for their stocks to go up(down).....

No wonder that the current financial crisis happened!
Quants should not pray but rather take action in a prudent way!
 

CGiuliano

Lowly Undergrad
Not FE related?? I wonder how many quants pray for their stocks to go up(down).....

"It is better to read the weather forecast before we pray for rain."
- Notebook; More Maxims of Mark, Johnson, 1927

..Only in this case use monte carlo.

Can anyone find me a thoroughly convincing creationism argument?
 

Bastian Gross

German Mathquant
Intelligent Design

Can anyone find me a thoroughly convincing creationism argument?

That is a delicate question!
Do you mean the creationism of a Creater God or more creationism as intelligent design?

Because the first one is to refuse by logical reflection and proof by contradiction.
By contrast the second one, intelligent design in a specific matter, seems to be acceptable to me. The reason for that has something to do with quantum physics and some laws of probability.
 
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