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  1. #1
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    The Bible Wheel, Numerology, and Cognitive Bias

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Amiel McGough View Post
    I have been thinking a lot about the Bible Wheel and the numerology (holographs). I can see now that selection bias played a central role in both.
    I find it VERY curious that you would come to such a conclusion now. You mean to tell me that after 15 years of defending the bible wheel and claiming nobody has been able to refute it, all of a sudden WHEN SOMEONE BEGINS USING IT TO POINT OUT HOW IT DEMONSTRATES THE SUPERNATURAL ORIGIN OF THE BIBLE *REGARDLESS* OF THE "NEGATIVE" TRAITS OF THE BIBLICAL GOD, you now claim it's a result of "selection bias"??? Now be careful with my words. I'm not saying you didn't use the bible wheel before as evidence for the supernatural origin of the bible (you clearly did). What I'm saying is AFTER you concluded the "negative" traits of the biblical God = The biblical God doesn't exist, you never had someone come along (as far as I know) that forced the issue that I've been raising (namely, the "negative" traits of the biblical God has no bearing whatsoever on whether or not he exists). So that makes me highly suspicious that you would all of a sudden start claiming the bible wheel is now a result of "selection bias", especially because you're clearly not just a nontheist but a radical ANTITHEIST.
    Hey there Gambini,

    I'm really glad you responded to my comment about cognitive bias. It's something I've been thinking about a lot lately, and it really helps to bounce ideas off someone skeptical of my skepticism. Of course, I'm very skeptical of your skepticism of my skepticism because a lot of your numerology and arguments for the the Bible display a tremendous amount of cognitive bias. So it looks like we can both benefit from our mutual skepticism. Welcome to the Skeptic's Zone!

    Now it's really important that you try to speak clearly and not misrepresent what I say. The fact that "selection bias" played a role in both the Bible Wheel and numerology is incontrovertible. Nothing could be more obvious, as I explained in the post to which you responded. But you misrepresented my statement when you said that I "claim it's [the Bible Wheel] a result of selection bias." I did not say that it was a RESULT of selection bias. I said "selection bias played a central role." Please forgive me for speaking plainly, but your posts are saturated with misrepresentations like that, which make meaningful discourse very difficult and suggest that you are a very sloppy thinker. Look at all the words I had to write to correct that one error of yours. It get's very tedious. I do hope you will try harder to articulate your thoughts more clearly.

    And this is very important to the topic at hand, because sloppy thinking and misrepresentation of your opponent's views (strawmen) is one of the primary ways folks protect themselves from seeing and admitting the cognitive biases that they use to rationalize the COGNITIVE DISSONANCE that constantly alerts them to the fact that their beliefs are in fact false and delusional. So please, try to think carefully with me. We have a great opportunity here.

    Another error is your assertion that I am a "radical ANTITHEIST." That is not true, and you know it because I have explained my position many times on this forum, and I explained myself directly to you a couple days ago when you lied about me by saying that am an "Atheist ZEALOT." As I explained, I am an "agnostic atheist" which means I do not assert that there is no god of any kind because such knowledge is beyond any human, and I am not a theist, so I am by definition an atheist. This simply means that I reject all the theistic style gods humans ever proposed, just as you do, save one. Please stop misrepresenting me. It reflects bad on you and makes rational discourse impossible. Again, look at how many words I have to write to correct your error. It get's very tedious.

    To move on to a more substantial point: The "negative traits" of the Biblegod was only one of the reasons I concluded the he does not exist. The most important reason is that, contrary to the uniform testimony of the Bible, the Biblegod cannot be trusted. Can you name a single thing that anyone can actually TRUST the Biblegod to do for them in this life? Nope. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. It's almost as if he didn't exist! <hint, hint, wink> People who trust the Biblegod for the health of their children end up with dead children and manslaughter convictions. If Biblegod were half as trustworthy as your average dentist there would be no debate about his existence. Therefore, the central claim of the Bible is proven false, and the only rational choice is to reject it.

    It is important for you to know the real reasons for my rejection of the Biblegod if you want to help me see the "errors of my way."

    Now as for the immorality of the Biblegod - that problem does not stand in isolation. It is part and parcel with all the scientific errors, logical absurdities, and primitive superstitions contained in the Bible. When taken as a whole, it is obvious that the best explanation is that the Bible was written by ignorant men with primitive beliefs. The Bible is indistinguishable from other ancient books in this regard. I find your suggestion that the immorality of God "has no bearing whatsoever on whether or not he exists" absurd. The Bible adamantly asserts that the Biblegod is just and righteous even as it presents him as unjust and unrighteous. Both cannot be true. Therefore, the only rational response is to reject both the Bible and it's god as false.

    And this brings us to the central topic of this thread. If the Bible and its god are false, how then do we explain the Bible Wheel and the numerology? The answer should be obvious. It is a demonstrable fact that 99.9999% of all numerology is pure bullshit based fundamentally on cognitive biases like selection bias, cherry picking, rationalization, confirmation bias, and so forth. Therefore, the first thing any rational person would do when confronted with the Bible Wheel and my numerology is to ask: Did cognitive biases play any role in forming and confirming those patterns? The answer is an unequivocal and incontrovertible "yes." When I first began studying numerology, I had nothing but selection bias to work with. I would scan the numerical values of many words and find "hits" that fit a pattern that seemed meaningful to me. The vast majority of the words I examined did not fit any pattern I could see, so I ignored them. This is the definition of selection bias. Likewise, my study of the Bible Wheel involved scanning the books on each spoke looking for connections. That too is the definition of selection bias. Does this mean that the "hits" did not indicate design? Not necessarily. That's the question that needs to be answered. Merely listing a bunch of "hits" as you do proves nothing. The only way to discern between chance and design is to examine ALL the data - including both the hits and the misses. It's a daunting task. I tried to do that in the early stages of my research. I wrote a program to record all the hits and misses but found it an impossible task, so I gave up and only recorded the hits. This means that I may have fallen into a classic delusion created by selection bias. I hope this thread will help determine if this is the case or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    Theoretically, I could see how you could raise the possibility that the themes under the 22 spokes in the bible wheel might be the result of "selection bias", but how about the fact that the MATHEMATICAL DESIGN in the molecular masses of the very amino acids of life CORRESPOND with the semantical AND geometrical design in the very first verse of the bible??? That has NOTHING to do with selection bias.
    Personally, I have never been impressed by the counting of atoms in those molecules and they have never played any role in my studies. There may be something to it, but if so I haven't seen anything convincing as yet. It's irrelevant to my quest to determine if the Bible Wheel and the numerology that I studied shows any signs of design. That's all I am interested in testing right now.

    Your comment displays a particular kind of bias I see frequently in your posts. You use established results like the Creation holograph to lend credence to claims that would not stand on their own. That's a significant error in thinking that bloats your sense of "evidence" beyond what is justified by the facts. We need to examine each claim on its own merits.

    Most of your posts, such as the one I am answering, contain examples of this error. You throw together the good, the bad, and ugly into one shotgun blast of "proof" to create an illusion that the evidence is much stronger than it really is. I've explained this to you many times but you just don't seem to get it. Your proof would be a thousand times stronger if you focused on the really strong results (like the holographs) and omitted the stuff that is dubious at best (and which is often total bullshit, as I've proven many times). In the world of "proof" less is more. It's odd that you don't realize that intelligent folks typically ignore (for good reason) someone who mixes error with truth the way you do.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    And how about the MATHEMATICAL DESIGN in the breastplate of the high priest, the "Star Of Israel" pattern or the first Prime Magic Square (ALL of which is mathematically linked to the MATHEMATICAL DESIGN in Genesis 1:1)??? NONE of that has ANYTHING to do with selection bias (the numbers are clearly there).
    As I've explained before, I've never seen any significance in "magic squares."

    The numerical patterns on the breastplate is intriguing, but there is a selection bias in its design. I wonder how many attempts were made before one with this pattern was found? It is not patterned on any list of names explicitly given in scripture. The list was designed by the person who made the design. He chose to omit Levi and replace Joesph with his two sons Ephraim and Manasseh, and move Benjamin from the last to the ten position in birth order.

    Your comments are a perfect example of the bias I described above. You are presenting a shotgun of mixed results in an attempt to create an illusion of "overwhelming design." If you really want to convince me, you must focus upon one thing at a time. Less is more. If you can establish one point, then it will stand like a rock upon which you can build. When I see your scattered approach it strikes me as an example of sloppy biased thinking and so is worse than useless because it actually serves as evidence AGAINST your position rather than for it. You need to prove that your results are REAL and based on PRINCIPLED THINKING that is mathematically legitimate and that you have considered the relevant probabilities. Merely asserting "that can't be a coincidence" is not only meaningless, but evidence that you don't know what you are talking about (as I have proven many times with careful mathematical analysis of your claims).

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    Or how about the fact that there are 22 + 1 word value combinations in Genesis 1:1 that are perfect multiples of 37 (with EACH of the seven words of Genesis 1:1 being used EXACTLY 12 times in making up those perfect multiples of 37, with 12 being the PRIME ORDER of 37 itself)??? That has NOTHING to do with selection bias.
    That has everything to do with selection bias. I have seen you relate dozens of numbers to Genesis 1:1 in dozens of ways. You have not shown that those coincidences are meaningful. That's what you need to do .... in a slow, thoughtful, principled manner. Do you really expect me to believe credulous crap? It won't happen. Merely claiming "look at these coincidences! They must be designed!" strikes me as absurd and as a perfect example of cognitive bias. It is the primary error of all the fallacious numerologists in the world. You really need to think about this.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    And even with the bible wheel itself ...

    How do you explain the STATISTICAL HITS of relevant words appearing under certain spokes???
    I'm really glad you brought that up. It's an excellent example of my own selection bias. I only reported the stats that fit the pattern. If you examine the statistics of the distribution of ALL the words in the whole Bible, the stats show no design. I simply I know, because I studied them for years hoping to find evidence. There are some intriguing coincidences, but nothing that would statistically prove design.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    How do you explain the fact that the odds of a symmetric sevenfold canon like the bible wheel is 1 in 688,324???
    Off the top of my head, I see a variety of possible explanations:
    1. Designed by God.
    2. Designed by some other superhuman intelligent agent
    3. Designed (perhaps subconsciously) by the scribes who kept rearranging the books to fit patterns they liked (there is much evidence that this happened)
    4. Subconscious manifestation of the group mind (not unlike dream mandalas)
    5. What pattern? So what? (This is the response I got from many if not most Christians)
    6. That's Preposterous! (Direct quote from William Lane Craig when asked for his opinion)
    7. Chance (shit happens).
    8. All of the above
    9. None of the above
    10. Some combination of the above

    So what do you think about the coincidences between Lincoln and Kennedy? What are the chances?

    And what do you think of this site - Spurious Correlations - that shows "amazing" coincidences in large datasets?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    How do you explain the fact that Isaiah is placed MIDWAY between the giving of the Torah, and the completion of the New Testament and the structure of the BOOK of Isaiah happens to correspond with the large scale structure of the 66 book canon of the bible (as does the bible wheel)???
    As I presume you know, the Isaiah-Bible Correlation is one of the primary areas I studied. It's a huge part of my original website. Unfortunately, this kind of "correlation" is extremely susceptible to cognitive bias. I have met TWO people who came up with different patterns and were absolutely convinced that they had total proof of the divine design of the Bible. One guy had simply made up his own order, but the other guy used the order of the Tanach for the OT and the early manuscript order for the NT. His stuff was disturbing because I noticed some of his correlations were much better than what we see in the standard KJV order. For example, in the Tanach, Isaiah is book 12 and in Isaiah 12 we read of drawing from the "wells of salvation" (Isaiah means "the lord is savior.") This is much better than Isaiah 23 which doesn't have anything linking to Isaiah. I was always very disappointed with that. And then there's Isaiah 13 which is all about the fall of Babylon which corresponds very well with Jeremiah which is book 13 in the Tanach. Of course, Isaiah 24 correlates well too so it's not so bad. UPSHOT - lots of cognitive bias in this kind of study.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    How do you explain the fact that a CIRCLE (the bible wheel = A CIRCLE) with an area of 31102 (the number of VERSES in the bible = 31102) divides up into 7 segments (the bible wheel = 7 natural divisions) with each having an area of 66.66 x 66.66 (the number of BOOKS in the bible = 66)???
    That's curious, but never really impressed me much. Like I said, you should drop the shotgun approach and work with me to establish a foundation of results that actually demand explanation. A random set of random results, no matter how "intriguing" the numbers may be, can't prove that the Bible is designed.

    And here's the most important fact: You generally accept without criticism anything that supports your believe in the Bible, and reject exactly the same kind of evidence that would support Islam or some other religion. That is BIAS. You can't deny it. I've seen you do it a hundred times. Don't you care if your beliefs are true or not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    How do you explain the fact that a CIRCLE (the bible wheel = A CIRCLE) with an area of 31102 (the number of VERSES in the bible = 31102) divides up into 22 segments (the bible wheel consists of 22 spokes) with each having an area of 11.89 x 118.9 (the number of CHAPTERS in the bible = 1189)??? Further, notice that the very word from which we get BIBLE = The FIRST word of the New Testament = A numerical value of *314* ...

    22/7 = 3.14, which is the CLOSEST approximation of *PI* under 100 (the bible wheel = A *CIRCLE* and consists of *22* spokes, corresponding with the *22* letters of the Hebrew alphabet, and *7* natural divisions).
    All that is very intriguing if you begin with a belief in the Bible. But you know it proves nothing because if you found similar things in the Quran you wouldn't become a Muslim. For example, the Quran states that the Number 19 rules over it, and it has 114 = 6 x 19 and 6 is the first PERFECT number and 19 is hexagonal. That's PROOF, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    When you take all that together, I don't see how the bible wheel can be dismissed as an example of "selection bias". And the fact that you got a bunch of misses during your massive research doesn't change the fact that the OVERWHELMING number of overall CONNECTIONS under the 22 spokes are there. You see what I mean? That IN ITSELF is mathematically significant. So it really boils down to this ...
    That's your primary error. The idea of taking all the CONFETTI of numbers and ideas "together" as if they all "confirmed" each other. That's a fundamental bias that makes your judgment suspect.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    The large scale structure of the bible (the bible wheel) is there for the whole world to see. So if you're now going to claim the OVERWHELMING overall number of CONNECTIONS under the 22 spokes are a product of "selection bias", then THE BURDEN OF PROOF is on you to provide a SIMILAR example of connections in a random text (and the same thing goes for the "Creation Holograph" of Genesis 1:1-5/John 1:1-5).
    There you go - declaring that your confetti of patterns is "OVERWHELMING." That to me looks like pure bias.

    As for the burden of proof - you've got it backwards. How many "connections" did I report in my book and on this site? A tiny fraction of the total POSSIBLE connections given the 31,102 verses of the Bible. Therefore, the burden of proof is on anyone who claims there IS a pattern. Sorry. That's the only intelligent response to claims of "patterns" found in "holy books" involving numerology. Remember - 99.99999% of all such claims are total crap and demonstrably delusions based on bias. So why should my little religious thingy be any different? Especially if selection bias played a central role in its development?

    Again, I'm really glad you are working with me on this. I look forward to really digging down deep to see what is, or is not, the case.

    Shine on!



    Richard
    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
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  2. #2
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    Deafening silence ...

    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

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    Yo! Gambini!

    It would be great if you would answer my post.

    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Amiel McGough View Post
    Yo! Gambini!

    It would be great if you would answer my post.


    Hey Richard


    I'm glad you reminded me of this post. This is my first time seeing your "deafening silence" remark


    I didn't respond to your first post because it was too long and would require a pretty long reply back. I'm going to try and set some time aside this weekend. As much as I hate doing long replies, there's just way too many problems I see in your post to ignore.



    Catch you later



    BINI

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    Hey Richard


    I'm glad you reminded me of this post. This is my first time seeing your "deafening silence" remark


    I didn't respond to your first post because it was too long and would require a pretty long reply back. I'm going to try and set some time aside this weekend. As much as I hate doing long replies, there's just way too many problems I see in your post to ignore.



    Catch you later



    BINI
    You could always just comment on one point at a time you know. Personally, I think that is a much better strategy. That way we can focus on a single point and actually "take it to the mat." Most of your posts are so scattered that it's impossible to follow your train of thought, let alone effectively answer (without writing a book). And it gives you an opportunity to ignore points that you can't answer. You should just pick ONE POINT that you think is most devastating and present that. And then I will answer that ONE POINT and maybe we will be able to establish the truth of the matter.
    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Amiel McGough View Post
    So please, try to think carefully with me. We have a great opportunity here.

    Sounds good to me.



    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Amiel McGough
    Another error is your assertion that I am a "radical ANTITHEIST." That is not true, and you know it because I have explained my position many times on this forum, and I explained myself directly to you a couple days ago when you lied about me by saying that I am an "Atheist ZEALOT." As I explained, I am an "agnostic atheist" which means I do not assert that there is no god of any kind because such knowledge is beyond any human, and I am not a theist, so I am by definition an atheist. This simply means that I reject all the theistic style gods humans ever proposed, just as you do, save one. Please stop misrepresenting me. It reflects bad on you and makes rational discourse impossible. Again, look at how many words I have to write to correct your error. It get's very tedious.

    The fact that you're an agnostic doesn't change the fact that you're an antitheist. You don't have to be POSITIVE about the nonexistence of God in order to be an antitheist. Your comments THROUGHOUT THIS ENTIRE FORUM bear witness to my claim that you're a radical antitheist. I'm not trying to be rude or misrepresent you. At the very least, you're RADICALLY against the biblical portrayal of God. So right off the jump, I already know you'd rather not have the biblical God to be real. I just find it curious that you would do a 180, after defending the bible wheel for 15 years (and claiming nobody has been able to refute it), and claim the entire design is now a massive fail. My suspicion arises primarily for two reasons ...

    1) We already know you're an antitheist (especially with regards to biblical theism).
    2) As soon as I pointed out that the "negative" traits of the biblical God have no bearing whatsoever as to whether or not he actually exists, you hit me with the 180 and claim the bible wheel is flawed ...


    I think you're starting to realize that *ALL* (I repeat, *ALL*) of the problems you've EVER raised against the biblical God can be classified as "negative" traits, which again, have absolutely no bearing whatsoever with regards to whether or not the biblical God exists. For example, ALL the "contradictions" or "errors" would only point to his FALLIBILITY. There isn't a SINGLE problem you've EVER raised about the biblical God that cannot be classified as simply "negative" or "imperfect" traits. And it's very curious that AS SOON AS I POINTED THIS OUT, you do a 180.


    Another point ...


    ATHEISM IS NOT A "LACK OF BELIEF"! That is *NOT* the UNIVERSAL definition of atheism. You can't give me a SINGLE recognized dictionary that DOESN'T define atheism as the BELIEF that there is no God but I can give you several recognized dictionaries that DOESN'T define atheism as a "LACK OF BELIEF". For example, the Standard Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Merriam Webster Compact Oxford English Dictionary and the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary DO NOT have the "LACK OF BELIEF" definition. In other words, MY definition of atheism is UNIVERSAL. Yours ISN'T.


    Btw, the very reason many atheists want to hide under the umbrella of "lacking a belief" fails in itself. They use this to place the entire burden of proof on the theist, which is a waste of time because GENERAL THEISM IS THE DEFAULT POSITION *REGARDLESS* OF HOW YOU DEFINE ATHEISM. I don't have to demonstrate to the solipsist that the external world exists. He has to demonstrate to me that the external world doesn't exist (and there are just as many, if not more, solipsists worldwide as there are nontheists). Your response to this is to claim that doesn't prove God exists. BUT THAT'S A RED HERRING! Nobody is saying the fact that general theism is the default position = God exists. The POINT is that since general theism is the default position, it is IRRATIONAL to reject it UNTIL you can present POSITIVE evidence against general theism. Just like it is IRRATIONAL to reject the idea that the external world exists UNLESS someone can provide POSITIVE evidence against it.



    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Amiel McGough
    The Biblegod cannot be trusted. Can you name a single thing that anyone can actually TRUST the Biblegod to do for them in this life? Nope. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. It's almost as if he didn't exist! <hint, hint, wink>

    The trustworthiness of the biblical God has no bearing whatsoever as to whether or not he exists. And you're not even making an argument here. This is nothing more than your OPINION. There are *BILLIONS* of people who believe their prayers have been answered (and yes, God can answer the prayers of non-Christians). Your milk jug analogy is a complete strawman caricature of evidential arguments for answered prayer. An evidential argument for answered prayer only applies to EXTRAORDINARY incidents of answered prayer, of which there are thousands.



    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Amiel McGough
    Does this mean that the "hits" did not indicate design? Not necessarily. That's the question that needs to be answered. Merely listing a bunch of "hits" as you do proves nothing. The only way to discern between chance and design is to examine ALL the data - including both the hits and the misses. It's a daunting task. I tried to do that in the early stages of my research. I wrote a program to record all the hits and misses but found it an impossible task, so I gave up and only recorded the hits. This means that I may have fallen into a classic delusion created by selection bias. I hope this thread will help determine if this is the case or not.

    Hold on, the burden of proof is on NEITHER one of us to demonstrate the OBSERVABLE large scale structure of the bible wheel is a random phenomenon. If someone is going to claim the OBSERVABLE patterns are random, then they need to get a RANDOM text, break it down into three sets around 22 spokes that are EACH assigned the same 22 meanings behind the 22 Hebrew alphabets (as well as the 8 keywords for each 22 letters from the Psalm 119 pattern) and produce the same amount of interlocking correlations found in the bible wheel. If you claim the pattern is random, then the burden of proof is on you to demonstrate that it is.



    TO BE CONTINUED ...
    Last edited by Gambini; 08-23-2014 at 05:56 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    The fact that you're an agnostic doesn't change the fact that you're an antitheist. You don't have to be POSITIVE about the nonexistence of God in order to be an antitheist. Your comments THROUGHOUT THIS ENTIRE FORUM bear witness to my claim that you're a radical antitheist. I'm not trying to be rude or misrepresent you. At the very least, you're RADICALLY against the biblical portrayal of God. So right off the jump, I already know you'd rather not have the biblical God to be real. I just find it curious that you would do a 180, after defending the bible wheel for 15 years (and claiming nobody has been able to refute it), and claim the entire design is now a massive fail. My suspicious arises primarily for two reasons ...

    1) We already know you're an antitheist (especially with regards to biblical theism).
    2) As soon as I pointed out that the "negative" traits of the biblical God have no bearing whatsoever as to whether or not he actually exists, you hit me with the 180 and claim the bible wheel is flawed ...
    Wow. You just produced a textbook example of the Genetic Fallacy. The truth or falsehood of a proposition is independent of whether the person stating it is theist, atheist, antitheist, or whatever. And worse, your assertion is false. I am not an "antitheist" let alone a "radical antitheist." And worse still, you have not presented any evidence to support your assertion. And why haven't you? Because you can't, because your assertion is false. I have never written a word that would support your assertion. On the contrary, I have explicitly stated that I am an atheist because I am not a theist, and I am not a theist because I believe the concept is unwarranted and probably irrational. I have given reasons for my position, so I am a rational agnostic atheist. That's it. That's the truth. Your argument is based on a strawman caricature of my position (to add yet another logical sin to your ledger).

    Another falsehood in your post is your assertion that I concluded the Bible Wheel is flawed only after you presented your argument that the "negative traits of the biblical God have no bearing" on God's existence. On the contrary, I began talking about the flaws in the Bible Wheel nearly three years ago when I started a thread called An Evolutionary Explanation of the Bible Wheel. In that article, I explained how Rose had mentioned that "the Bible Wheel was not as perfect as I thought it was. She explained that though it might be "optimal" given the 66 books, it was no where near as good as it could have been if I could have edited those books myself to make them fit the pattern even better." That statement is true. And over the years since I wrote that article, I have studied how fallacies and cognitive biases like selection bias (cherry picking) and confirmation bias can create an illusion of design. It is now OBVIOUS to me that my PRIMARY evidence for the Bible Wheel was based on selection bias. I would scan each spoke for "hits" and ignore all the misses, which vastly outnumbered the hits. I reported only the "hits" and never even did an analysis of the lion's share of the data which consisted of misses. None of this was in response to your argument about the negative traits of God, which should be patently obvious to you anyway since you know that I reject your argument as fallacious (as I explain in more detail below).

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    I think you're starting to realize that *ALL* (I repeat, *ALL*) of the problems you've EVER raised against the biblical God can be classified as "negative" traits, which again, have absolutely no bearing whatsoever with regards to whether or not the biblical God exists. For example, ALL the "contradictions" or "errors" would only point to his FALLIBILITY. There isn't a SINGLE problem you've EVER raised about the biblical God that cannot be classified as simply "negative" traits. And it's very curious that AS SOON AS I POINTED THIS OUT, you do a 180.
    That's true, if you include "non-existence" as a "negative trait." The "contradictions and errors" in the Biblical description of God prove that the biblegod cannot exist, because his properties would be self-contradictory, and incoherent things cannot exist. That's the problem. The Bible states that God is good and just and then presents God as grossly immoral. It says that God is omniscient and then says that there are things that God does not know. Etc. etc. etc. The Biblical god is a logical impossibility. I am fully justified in my judgment.

    And again, your presentation of that lame argument had no influence of any kind on the development of my understanding concerning the cognitive biases and other errors in my presentation of the Bible Wheel. And even if it did, it wouldn't imply anything about the validity of my assertions. You fail on all points dude.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    ATHEISM IS NOT A "LACK OF BELIEF"! That is *NOT* the UNIVERSAL definition of atheism. You can't give me a SINGLE recognized dictionary that DOESN'T define atheism as the BELIEF that there is no God but I can give you several recognized dictionaries that DOESN'T define atheism as a "LACK OF BELIEF". For example, the Standard Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Merriam Webster Compact Oxford English Dictionary and the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary DO NOT have the "LACK OF BELIEF" definition. In other words, MY definition of atheism is UNIVERSAL. Yours ISN'T.
    The meaning of words changes over time. I have explained what I mean when I call myself an atheist, so there is no reason for any confusion on that issue. If you think the word should be restricted to "strong atheists" who assert that there are no gods as a fact, then you can call me a "non-theist." I don't care. It means the same thing - I am not a theist. No knowledge comes from your meaningless haggling over semantics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    Btw, the very reason many atheists want to hide under the umbrella of "lacking a belief" fails in itself. They use this to place the entire burden of proof on the theist, which is a waste of time because GENERAL THEISM IS THE DEFAULT POSITION *REGARDLESS* OF HOW YOU DEFINE ATHEISM. I don't have to demonstrate to the solipsist that the external world exists. He has to demonstrate to me that the external world doesn't exist (and there are just as many, if not more, solipsists worldwide as there are nontheists). Your response to this is to claim that doesn't prove God exists. BUT THAT'S A RED HERRING! Nobody is saying the fact that general theism is the default position = God exists. The POINT is that since general theism is the default position, it is IRRATIONAL to reject it UNTIL you can present POSITIVE evidence against general theism. Just like it is IRRATIONAL to reject the idea that the external world exists UNLESS someone can provide POSITIVE evidence against it.
    Your claim that the assumption of God's existence is the "default position" is total bullshit. The "default position" is that there is no reason to believe in any god because everyone rejects 99.9999% of all gods that have every been proposed and there is no reason to believe any god actually exists and many reasons to believe he does not exist. This is a perfect example of the primary religious delusion, the idea that God is trustworthy. Nothing could be more absurd. No one, not one person, can actually TRUST God to do anything for them in this life. Folks who trust God for the health of their children end up with dead children and manslaughter convictions. If God were half as trustworthy as the average dentist, there would be no debate about his existence. You assertion that the existence of God is the "default positions" is just as ludicrous and delusional as saying that "God is trustworthy." Your arguments are absurd.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    The trustworthiness of the biblical God has no bearing whatsoever as to whether or not he exists. And you're not even making an argument here. This is nothing more than your OPINION. There are *BILLIONS* of people who believe their prayers have been answered (and yes, God can answer the prayers of non-Christians). Your milk jug analogy is a complete strawman caricature of evidential arguments for answered prayer. An evidential argument for answered prayer only applies to EXTRAORDINARY incidents of answered prayer, of which there are thousands.
    1) If God is not trustworthy, then he is not the god described in the Bible which means the god of the bible does not exist.

    2) It is not merely my opinion. It is a demonstrable fact that no person on planet earth can actually TRUST God to do anything in any particular situation. They can hope. They can pray. But they cannot TRUST that he will ACTUALLY DO ANYTHING. It appears you have no concept of what the word "trust" actually entails. To say someone is "trustworthy" means that you can trust the person to actually DO what he says he will do. God has said he will answer prayers, but no one can TRUST that he actually answers any prayer, unless you want to say his failure to answer is itself an answer. But that would be too moronic even for you.

    3) The fact that BILLIONS deluded people believe that God answers prayers proves my point that religion has corrupted their minds.

    4) Your assertion that he milk jug analogy is a strawman is false and unsubstantiated. If you want to make assertions like that, you need to show how the analogy misrepresents prayer. The point of the video is that a person would get EXACTLY the same results if they prayed to either a milk jug or Yahweh. I don't see how anything you said contradicts that fact.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    Hold on, the burden of proof is on NEITHER one of us to demonstrate the OBSERVABLE large scale structure of the bible wheel is a random phenomenon. If someone is going to claim the OBSERVABLE patterns are random, then they need to get a RANDOM text, break it down into three sets around 22 spokes that are EACH assigned the same 22 meanings behind the 22 Hebrew alphabets (as well as the 8 keywords as for each 22 letters from the Psalm 119 pattern) and produce the same amount of interlocking corrections found in the bible wheel. If you claim the pattern is random, then the burden of proof is on you to demonstrate that it is.
    What "observable" patterns are you talking about? You really need to be more specific if you want anyone to understand what you are trying to say.

    There is no need to test random texts for patterns. We can look at what we have in the Bible. If 99.9% of the text is not "connected" in a meaningful way on the spokes, then there is no "observable patterns" that need explaining. The fact that I could cherry pick a few hundred connections is meaningless in light of the fact that the vast majority do not fit. This was my error in my book. Cherry picking proves nothing. You need to look at ALL the data, and when we do that, we do not see any "observable pattern" in the vast majority of the text. I believe this constitutes a solid debunking of my primary claim, which is that the Bible Wheel reveals significant correlations between the books on the spokes. It would be great if you could try to accurately represent my argument and then refute it without making any logical fallacies, strawman misrepresentations, or other blatant errors that I have to correct.

    Great chatting!

    Shine on!



    Richard
    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

    Check out my blog site

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    2) As soon as I pointed out that the "negative" traits of the biblical God have no bearing whatsoever as to whether or not he actually exists, you hit me with the 180 and claim the bible wheel is flawed ...
    Hey there Gambini,

    Your assertion is false. I have been considering the possibility that the Bible Wheel is "flawed" because of cognitive bias for over two years. It had absolutely nothing to do with your argument concerning the "negative traits" of God. It is not a "new" idea at all. For example, here is what I wrote at the end of my analysis of cognitive bias called The Art of Rationalization: A Case Study of Christian Apologist Rich Deem, which I published on my blog on October 6, 2012:
    This topic is of keen interest to me because I was a fundamentalist Christian for about 15 years. I explain the cognitive dissonance that drove me out of the faith in my article called Why I Quit Christianity. I have left a very long trail spanning more than a decade on this site and many posts in other forums defending my work on the Bible Wheel. My next project is to apply the insights I gained by writing this article to myself. Most arguments raised against my work claimed that the Bible Wheel had no objective validity and that all my evidence was nothing but the product of cognitive biases like cherry picking, confirmation bias, pareidolia, and so forth. So now I will review those arguments and put my old responses to them through the same fire I have used to test Rich Deem’s arguments. It should prove enlightening.
    And indeed, it has proven very enlightening!

    Shine on!



    Richard
    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

    Check out my blog site

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Amiel McGough View Post
    Your assertion is false. I have been considering the possibility that the Bible Wheel is "flawed" because of cognitive bias for over two years.

    I didn't say you weren't "considering the possibility". I said now you're SAYING it is flawed (IMMEDIATELY after I pointed out that ANY being making or inspiring "false" or "contradictory" statements doesn't = Nonexistence and would only demonstrate fallibility). You misread me alot. In fact, that's why I didn't even bother responding to your last post to me here. When I said you GRANTED there was mathematical design in the bible, I WASN'T TALKING ABOUT THE BIBLE WHEEL. And that should have been obvious since the whole point of this thread is about you now rejecting the bible wheel, which means you need to be very careful when you accuse someone of being "delusional". If the bible wheel is one huge massive fail, that means all the Christians who laughed at and mocked your "little wheel" (like JP Holding and William Lane Craig) were right and you were deluded for 15 years (running around the internet claiming nobody can refute it and that it was invincible). I only point this out because you have a tendency to call other people deluded. It also seems like you can't stand the fact that there are people who disagree with you. Just an observation.



    E = SHALOMness Squared
    Last edited by Gambini; 08-25-2014 at 05:28 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Amiel McGough View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    2) As soon as I pointed out that the "negative" traits of the biblical God have no bearing whatsoever as to whether or not he actually exists, you hit me with the 180 and claim the bible wheel is flawed ...
    Hey there Gambini,

    Your assertion is false. I have been considering the possibility that the Bible Wheel is "flawed" because of cognitive bias for over two years. It had absolutely nothing to do with your argument concerning the "negative traits" of God. It is not a "new" idea at all. For example, here is what I wrote at the end of my analysis of cognitive bias called The Art of Rationalization: A Case Study of Christian Apologist Rich Deem, which I published on my blog on October 6, 2012:
    This topic is of keen interest to me because I was a fundamentalist Christian for about 15 years. I explain the cognitive dissonance that drove me out of the faith in my article called Why I Quit Christianity. I have left a very long trail spanning more than a decade on this site and many posts in other forums defending my work on the Bible Wheel. My next project is to apply the insights I gained by writing this article to myself. Most arguments raised against my work claimed that the Bible Wheel had no objective validity and that all my evidence was nothing but the product of cognitive biases like cherry picking, confirmation bias, pareidolia, and so forth. So now I will review those arguments and put my old responses to them through the same fire I have used to test Rich Deem’s arguments. It should prove enlightening.
    And indeed, it has proven very enlightening!

    Shine on!



    Richard
    I didn't say you weren't "considering the possibility". I said now you're SAYING it is flawed (IMMEDIATELY after I pointed out that ANY being making or inspiring "false" or "contradictory" statements doesn't = Nonexistence and would only demonstrate fallibility).
    When I said you assertion was false, I was talking about your claim that it was a "180" as if it were a sudden change in what I've been saying. It is not. I've been dropping hints for quite a while, but my thoughts on this issue had not really gelled. It takes quite a while and a lot of effort to free your mind from biases that were instilled over years of biased thinking. But the time has come. I am now explicitly stating that it is flawed because of selection bias. And why am I saying that? Because that's what I've concluded after years of studying the evidence. As I'm sure you have noticed, I've been "cutting my teeth" debunking every variety of biases that pervert the judgment of believers. Reviewing your claims played no small role. (Thanks!) I've spent a lot of time on this project. It was TWO YEARS AGO, after studying how Rich Deem literally disintegrated his mind with his blatantly biased rationalizations, that I said my NEXT PROJECT was to apply the same rigorous honesty to my own work. It should be no surprise that it taken this long to get that project off the ground since I spent fifteen years convincing myself, largely through selection bias, that the Bible Wheel and gematria were evidence of God. But I have enough evidence now, and am ready to affirm that cognitive bias played a significant role in both the Bible Wheel and gematria. If you want to challenge that conclusion, great! All you need to do is challenge the evidence that supports it. The fact that I happened to start this thread after you presented your argument about the "negative traits of God" is utterly irrelevant. That argument had absolutely nothing to do with my choice. This should be obvious since I have explained why that argument not only fails, but is blatantly absurd. All you are doing is inventing a NEW GOD that is different than the "god" of the Bible. I've explained this in detail twice, and you have not refuted a word I wrote. You have not even responded to my point. It seems like you are somehow blinded. So here is what you need to do ...

    RESPOND TO THIS: If you grant (for the sake of argument) that the Bible attributes self-contradictory properties to its "god" then logic demands that that "god" cannot exist. This does not mean that there could not be some OTHER GOD who does not have those self-contradictory properties, and who may have inspired the Bible. But that's irrelevant. We know nothing of that OTHER GOD except that it cannot be the "god" of the Bible. If you want to argue for that OTHER GOD, fine. But first you must admit that it could not be the "god" of the Bible.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gambini View Post
    If the bible wheel is one huge massive fail, that means all the Christians who laughed at and mocked your "little wheel" (like JP Holding and William Lane Craig) were right and you were deluded for 15 years (running around the internet claiming nobody can refute it and that it was invincible).
    Your logic is fallacious. The fact that a person rejects a proposition that happens to be false does not mean that they had a valid reason for rejecting it. They are "right" only in the sense that a broken clock is "right" twice a day. Most of the mocking fools didn't have a clue what they were talking about and never even tried to formulate an argument. And the few who did try were easy to refute. That's why I could legitimately "run around the internet claiming nobody could refute it." But as the old saying goes - if you want a job done right, do it yourself! So that's what I've done. It will be VERY interesting to see if you can formulate any argument against my assertion that selection bias played a sufficiently significant role in the Bible Wheel to obviate any claim of divine design.

    I am really glad you are pursuing this.

    Shine on!



    Richard
    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

    Check out my blog site

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