Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

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Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#1  Postby mindyourmind » Jun 23, 2010 2:21 pm

I have commented often on how it seems to be a very popular modern theist strategem to firstly establish that there are things that science / we cannot prove and then secondly, triumphantly, drive a whole truckload of Jesus into that acknowledged gap.

I therefore really enjoyed this article by philosopher Stephen Law on what he calls the "mystery card".

"Bloody well done, Sir" is all I wish to add to his (long) article.

Stephen Law and the Mystery Card at http://stephenlaw.blogspot.com/2010/06/ ... -card.html
So the reason why God created the universe, including millions of years of human and animal suffering, and the extinction of entire species, is so that some humans who have passed his test can be with him forever. I see.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#2  Postby mindyourmind » Jun 24, 2010 7:28 am

Nothing?

Maybe if I quote the introductory remarks :

"Oh dear, your belief system looks pretty irrational. Critics point out that only do you have little in the way of argument for what you believe, there also seems to be powerful evidence against it. If you want, nevertheless, to convince both yourself and others that your beliefs are not nearly as ridiculous as your critics suggest, what can you do?

Play the mystery card. By far the most popular version of this strategy is to say, “Ah, but of course this is beyond the ability of science and reason to decide. We must acknowledge that science and reason have their limits. It is sheer arrogance to suppose they can explain everything.”
So the reason why God created the universe, including millions of years of human and animal suffering, and the extinction of entire species, is so that some humans who have passed his test can be with him forever. I see.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#3  Postby Mr P » Jun 24, 2010 8:18 am

mindyourmind wrote:Nothing?

Give us chance, it's a bloody long article ;)

He's detailed, very eloquently, one of my major irritations when confronted by the "science doesn't know everything" crowd. Thanks to this I now have a way to counter the accusations of closed mindedness I occasionally have thrown at me. :thumbup:

EDIT: I particularly like the demolition job he does on Mc Grath, I made the mistake of reading Finding Dawkins God which left me with a headache.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#4  Postby Animavore » Jun 24, 2010 8:36 am

Ah. So there's a name for that. The Skeptic Dampening Effect. I like it.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#5  Postby mindyourmind » Jun 24, 2010 12:54 pm

Mr P wrote:
mindyourmind wrote:Nothing?

Give us chance, it's a bloody long article ;)

He's detailed, very eloquently, one of my major irritations when confronted by the "science doesn't know everything" crowd. Thanks to this I now have a way to counter the accusations of closed mindedness I occasionally have thrown at me. :thumbup:

EDIT: I particularly like the demolition job he does on Mc Grath, I made the mistake of reading Finding Dawkins God which left me with a headache.



Sorry to make fun about your slow reading :naughty2:

Yes, I think it is an important article, one that neatly gathers together much of what I have felt in arguing against the Credulous.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#6  Postby mindyourmind » Jun 24, 2010 12:55 pm

Animavore wrote:Ah. So there's a name for that. The Skeptic Dampening Effect. I like it.



It has a nice ring to it. I can hear it now : "Oh well, no wonder my magic prayers didn't work, it was because of you people causing the damn Skeptic Dampening Effect here on my stage. Shame on you, now leave so that my prayers can work."
So the reason why God created the universe, including millions of years of human and animal suffering, and the extinction of entire species, is so that some humans who have passed his test can be with him forever. I see.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#7  Postby Animavore » Jun 24, 2010 1:09 pm

mindyourmind wrote:
Animavore wrote:Ah. So there's a name for that. The Skeptic Dampening Effect. I like it.



It has a nice ring to it. I can hear it now : "Oh well, no wonder my magic prayers didn't work, it was because of you people causing the damn Skeptic Dampening Effect here on my stage. Shame on you, now leave so that my prayers can work."


I've been subject to this bollox loads of times. Whing-bags who claim some woo like "chi" or "aura reading" get unexpectedly challenged and try to blame me for messing up their "chakras" or some bollox. And I say "unexpectedly" in the last sentence because I swear your average joe just lets these things slide even if they think it's bollox. In fact I've often had people complain that I was out of order for calling people out on their ridiculousness as if etiquette dictates that the standard norm is to let them have their bit of fun.
At least now when they pull this one I have a name for it to make it sound more officially like a psychological condition on their part rather than a refusal to be open-minded on mine.
Last edited by Animavore on Jun 24, 2010 1:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#8  Postby trubble76 » Jun 24, 2010 1:50 pm

Really good piece, felt like an abridged version though. Perhaps the final release will be a little chunkier.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#9  Postby Mr P » Jun 24, 2010 2:03 pm

I've argued with people in the past that the concept of the supernatural is simply a label for our collective ignorance and is employed as a barrier to further inquiry, the argument being shut down with this mystery card (I'll be using that phrase from now on). People don't like having it pointed out to them that their hand-waving ammounts to nothing more than "stop asking awkward questions" and renders them both closed minded and hypocritical.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#10  Postby mindyourmind » Jun 24, 2010 2:05 pm

Mr P wrote:I've argued with people in the past that the concept of the supernatural is simply a label for our collective ignorance and is employed as a barrier to further inquiry, the argument being shut down with this mystery card (I'll be using that phrase from now on). People don't like having it pointed out to them that their hand-waving ammounts to
nothing more than "stop asking awkward questions" and renders them both closed minded and hypocritical.


Yes, I will also be using the "mystery card" reference from now on.

"We don't have answers for everything, therefore Jesus" :scratch:
So the reason why God created the universe, including millions of years of human and animal suffering, and the extinction of entire species, is so that some humans who have passed his test can be with him forever. I see.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#11  Postby murshid » Jul 01, 2017 9:11 am

mindyourmind wrote:Stephen Law and the Mystery Card at http://stephenlaw.blogspot.com/2010/06/ ... -card.html

This is from his book Believing Bullshit, which I highly recommend.
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Re: Stephen Law on "The Mystery Card"

#12  Postby felltoearth » Jul 01, 2017 3:35 pm

Bookmarking.
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