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joshfeola comments on An Alien God - Less Wrong

80 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 02 November 2007 06:57AM

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Comment author: joshfeola 13 October 2009 03:41:28AM 0 points [-]

you make some good points. however, it's naive to assert that people deploy nuclear bombs or fly planes into buildings for purely religious motivations. ideology has much more to do with geopolitics, historical conflict, and, ultimately, economics than it does with religion.

i also disagree that there are "billions of people" who believe in the god you describe above. i live in china, where virtually no one (statistically) is a monotheist. there are a multiplicity of Single Gods that people subscribe to without consciously acknowledging the differences between them. yes, people who do not initially believe in any given god concept are "persuaded", and convert. the idea of "a god" is just as variable as all ideas and subject to change over time, exponentially more so in this period of global connectivity.

to my mind it ultimately boils down to epistemological differences between individuals rather than an objectively discernible continuum of "knowledge." faith is a contentious term, and i think that there is as much faith involved in "believing" that our universe exists as we perceive it on the basis of unobservable quantum events as believing that the universe exists as the narcissistic self-image of some god. but this difference of opinion will not be eliminated by any amount of discussion on this thread.

maybe i am out of place on this site, but i appreciate the opportunity to engage in this dialogue, even if it is with a lack of capitalization.