The Non Required

Vrai ou faux, là n’est pas la question…
October 17, 2007, 12:25 am
Filed under: De quoi tu parles ?, Post perso

Une chose démontrable n’est pas nécéssairement vraie et une chose vraie n’est pas toujours démontrable. Je peux ainsi prétendre des choses fausses sans qu’on ne puisse démontrer le contraire. De la même manière, je peux prétendre des choses vraies sans pouvoir me justifier par une démonstration.

Sur ce, voici une partie de ce que “nous” tenons pour vrai et que d’autres disent sans pouvoir le prouver. Et si ça vous amuse toujours, on pourra encore discuter de la démonstration du contraire !


“There is no God that has existence apart from people’s thoughts of God. There is certainly no Being that can simply suspend the (nomological) laws of the universe in order to satisfy our personal or collective yearnings and whims—like a stage director called on to change and improve a play. But there is a mental (cognitive and emotional) process common to science and religion of suspending belief in what you see and take for obvious fact. Humans have a mental compulsion—perhaps a by-product of the evolution of a hyper-sensitive reasoning device to serve our passions—to situate and understand the present state of mundane affairs within an indefinitely extendable and overarching system of relations between hitherto unconnected elements. In any event, what drives humanity forward in history is this quest for non-apparent truth.”


“It is possible to live happily and morally without believing in free will. As Samuel Johnson said “All theory is against the freedom of the will; all experience is for it.” With recent developments in neuroscience and theories of consciousness, theory is even more against it than it was in his time, more than 200 years ago. So I long ago set about systematically changing the experience. I now have no feeling of acting with free will, although the feeling took many years to ebb away.”


“I believe in belief—or rather: I have faith in having faith. (…) So here is what I have faith in: We have a hand backing us, not as a divine foresight or control, but in the very simple and concrete sense that we are all survivors. We are all the result of a very long line of survivors who survived long enough to have offspring. Amoeba, rodents and mammals. We can therefore have confidence that we are experts in survival. We have a wisdom inside, inherited from millions of generations of animals and humans, a knowledge of how to go about life. That does not in any way imply foresight or planning ahead on our behalf. It only implies that we have a reason to trust out ability to deal with whatever challenges we meet. We have inherited such an ability. (…) Because we are here, we have a reason for having faith in having faith”.


“I know that it sounds corny, but I believe that people are getting better. In other words, I believe in moral progress. (…) I believe, but cannot prove, that our species is passing through a transitional stage, from being animals to being true humans. I do not pretend to understand what true humans will be like, and I expect that I would not even understand it if I met them. Yet, I believe that our own universal sense of right and wrong is pointing us in the right direction, and that it is the direction of our future. I believe that ten thousand years from now, people (or whatever we are by then) will be more empathetic and more altruistic than we are. They will trust each other more, and for good reason. They will take better care of each other. They be more thoughtful about the broader consequences of their actions. They will take better care of their future than we do of ours.”


“I do not believe that people are capable of rational thought when it comes to making decisions in their own lives. People believe that are behaving rationally and have thought things out, of course, but when major decisions are made—who to marry, where to live, what career to pursue, what college to attend, people’s minds simply cannot cope with the complexity. When they try to rationally analyze potential options, their unconscious, emotional thoughts take over and make the choice for them.”


” I believe, first, that all people have the same fundamental concepts, values, concerns, and commitments, despite our diverse languages, religions, social practices, and expressed beliefs. (…) Second, one of our shared core systems centers on a notion that is false: the notion that members of different human groups differ profoundly in their concepts and values. (…) Third, the most striking feature of human cognition stems not from our core knowledge systems but from our capacity to rise above them. (…) Together, my three beliefs suggest a fourth (…) the truth of the claim of a common human nature eventually will be supported by evidence as strong and convincing as the evidence that the earth is round. As humans are bathed in this evidence, we will overcome our misconceptions of human differences. Ethnic and religious rivalries and conflicts will come to seem as pointless as debates over the turtles that our pancake earth sits upon, and our common need for a stable, sustainable environment for all people will be recognized.”

NDLR: Pour ce qui est de l’introduction de ce post nous devons remercier KURT GÖDEL.


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