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# Atheists, what do you think of life?

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Rosalba Perna
Associate Professor
Dept. of Physics and Astronomy
Stony Brook University
http://www.astro.sunysb.edu/rosalba/astro2030/GeneralRelativity.pdf

Professor Dept. of Physics and Astronomy said:
The effects of gravity are exactly equivalent to the effects of acceleration.

To a distant observer, time appears to pass more slowly in places where gravity is strong. To an observer in a place where gravity is strong, time appears to pass more quickly in places where gravity is weak.

Both statements embody the idea that gravity warps time.
[B]This sort of time dilation is importantly different from
the special-relativistic version of time dilation![B]

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu said:
Gravitational Time Dilation :
A clock in a gravitational field runs more slowly according to the gravitational time dilation relationship from general relativity

I do not know why some people are so set on wanting to be the absolute in a discussion that they keep bending, twisting, manipulating, and even inventing meanings towards what others write.

Somewhere along the line somebody started a chain of quotes and misinterpretations leading to others confusing multiple THEORIES with what i was referring to, to end it all up in a mess.

I wil not continue this for the sake of the original thread OP, and i will not keep explaining that people confused a lot of things. Maybe i formulated it badly and caused the misinterpretation many posts ago, who knows, and i dont care anymore. You all started to confuse and switch different parts of a theory.

FireFish said:

A clock in a gravitational field runs more slowly according to the gravitational time dilation relationship from general relativity

Nobody in this thread has disputed this. I explicitly stated in my last comment that I agreed with what you said. Relativity does say that.

The point that is in contention is your statement that "Gravity is an insanely major factor in how we perceive time". That's the part you have not substantiated.

The things you were saying about atmospheric pressure, and why you think that's somehow related, are also what I'd like to see clarified.

I do not know why some people are so set on wanting to be the absolute in a discussion that they keep bending, twisting, manipulating, and even inventing meanings towards what others write.

Somewhere along the line somebody started a chain of quotes and misinterpretations leading to others confusing multiple THEORIES with what i was referring to, to end it all up in a mess.

It's sad that you're assuming bad faith; I for one have carefully explained and laid out (in my last comment) why I reached the assumptions about what you said that I did. Have I said something unreasonable? I've given my interpretation of what you've said, explicitly stated that I'm not sure I have understood, and specifically asked if you can correct my misinterpretations.

Nobody is trying to intentionally distort what you're saying, we're just asking you to clarify what you're saying because it seems unclear and (without proper clarification from you) confused.

FireFish said:

gravitational time dilation :
1 - clocks in satellites run faster then on earth, because the influence of gravity is different there, less gravity.

Just noticed this as well. Clocks on satellites actually run slower due to time dilation. So you've got this backwards.

Because an observer on the ground sees the satellites in motion relative to them, Special Relativity predicts that we should see their clocks ticking more slowly (see the Special Relativity lecture). Special Relativity predicts that the on-board atomic clocks on the satellites should fall behind clocks on the ground by about 7 microseconds per day because of the slower ticking rate due to the time dilation effect of their relative motion.

(and it's not due to gravity; it's because the satellites are travelling at high speed relative to the Earth).

fraggle said:
Just noticed this as well. Clocks on satellites actually run slower due to time dilation. So you've got this backwards.

I will happily take the fall for that one, as stated before i might actually have formulated in some mistakes which escalated,
and which got corrected with external sources in later posts of mine. i am a non stop hectic thinker about anything and everything
which leads to me speeding my way into posts at times, which sometimes causes me to write hard to follow webs of explanations crossing each other.

but : A clock in a gravitational field runs more slowly according to the gravitational time dilation relationship from general relativity ?

I was focusing on the gravity aspect which is a part of the THEORY around space-time, which got confused more and more when i and others started to quote and debate against each other. it should by all means be capable of influencing that which we call time.

The mass of an object like a planet creates gravity by bending space-time, this bending of space-time pulls in other planets / objects / stars / etc... and might even be capable of bending light. this was part of Einstein his theory. But because it is a Theory and not an absolute fact, there is nothing which undeniably proves this yet.

Discovery ;
http://curiosity.discovery.com/question/gravity-affect-time-space

Stephen hawking.
http://www.hawking.org.uk/space-and-time-warps.html

if i truly botched up so hard that people could not see what i was refering to anymore, then i apologize for letting this drag on for so long, but to me it seemed so obvious that i assumed i was up against smartasses trying to just look better.

Edited :
I forgot to mention something, and improved the structure.

FireFish said:

This is a hastily strung together presentation for highschoolers. It throws out 0.9c for relativistic time dilatation and gives no units for the gravitational distortion. It mentions bending light rays, however, so it works with either massive stellar bodies like black holes, or with cosmic distances, or with tiny shifts.

The GSU webpage makes it very clear that the effects are infinitesimally small in Newtonian scales. No one here disputed you about the effects existing, but you are clearly blowing them out of proportions by many orders of magnitude.

You also suffer from srs butthurt.

dew said:

You also suffer from srs butthurt.

Did you even read my previous post, i seriously doubt if that comes remotely close to being butthurt if i appologize that i might have seriously failed at writing it down, compared to your failed assumption about me. :)

FireFish said:

if i truly botched up so hard that people could not see what i was refering to anymore, then i apologize for letting this drag on for so long, but to me it seemed so obvious that i assumed i was up against smartasses trying to just look better.

Stephen hawking.
http://www.hawking.org.uk/space-and-time-warps.html

I am out of this, because i keep seeing attempts to dag this out beyond the discussion.

Whoops, okay, so I slightly derped on the time dilation business. Eh, minor misstatement, my bad.

Firefish, I'ma call you out here. You're claiming Theory isn't fact? Seriously? WTF are you even smoking, dude? That's something an uneducated Neanderthal Creationist would say - "Oooh, it's theory, not fact!" Do you not know the difference between the scientific use of the word theory and the colloquial usage? I friggin' hate when people do that. When a layperson says "theory," they're usually meaning an educated guess. When a scientist says "theory," they mean something that has been backed up by a significant amount of evidence. In other words, they've generated a hypothesis (which IS an educated guess), and they've checked that hypothesis against scientific data, either experimental or observational. With enough data, they can then generate a theory, which is the scientific way of saying, "We've checked this over and over again, and we're more than 99% certain that this model accurately reflects reality."

For instance, we call it Einstein's THEORY of Relativity because we've tested it over and over and over again, and our results match up to the predictions Einstein laid out. As with all science, there's a minute chance it could be wrong, but all our research and evidence points to it being correct, and it wouldn't be called a theory if there were no evidence to support it and it were merely speculation.

Would anybody like to comment on what I was saying about causality? I'm still not understanding what you guys were saying.

I'd rather not go back to the causality thing because talking about is is damn near impossible. Thing is, it's possible to conceive of a universe without causality, however, it's just not something we can really wrap our minds around because we're hardwired to view things in the context of causality. Heck, we're so hardwired that we often see causality when it does not exist - hence the concept of luck, curses, divine reward and punishment, etc.

Talking about a world without causality is like trying to describe a 5-dimensional cube. We know such a thing could exist, and we may even be able to mathematically describe it, but that doesn't mean we can actually picture it, no matter how hard we try. Causality means time and time means causality - but it could be possible for there to be another place (for lack of a better word), where neither exist. Maybe there's a place with no time, and thus no change - everything is static. Or there could be change but with no laws governing the change - everything is chaos. And great, even though I said I wasn't gonna do it, I went and did it, and now I have a headache.

geekmarine said: ...

Science is ever expanding, changing, learning, so even age old theories which seemed tested by time get changed if needed if some form of proof shows science that it was wrong with its older statements or what they hoped to be proof once in time.

You called me out with things like neanderthal and uneducated, well i call you out with the fact that you ridicule science and atheists by acting like that. It always shames me to see Atheists with such a short fuse and narrow mind that they need to 'attack' in means of words and writing, and when somebody answers back in the same way then its odd or acting butthurt.

way to go !

Uh... okay, so i'll answer the question of this thread's first post.

1. That's stupid, you can always work harder in your life to make it better, i've always thought that suicide is something stupid to do, why would you like to die? when i think of that, it comes to my mind my family and people i've met, things i've wanted to do, etc...

2. I don't think so, i do what i want in my free time and study when i have to or i want to, i find this question a little bit strange. While the other 2 questions are in some way related to be an atheist, if you put this question here it doesn't make any sense, anybody could be wasting his/her time, being religious or not.

3.The big bang theory is something i've always relied on.

I wasn't always an atheist, I grew up in a religious family, but then i realized that all that religious stuff was wrong and make no sense... a lot of questions like "where is that god? why he/she does nothing to stop wars? what about hunger in poor countries? people that have fatal diseases? people with cancer? or AIDS? where is that salvation? (when my father died:)why he/she would make people suffer by taking their loved ones "to heaven"?" came to my mind.

Note that i don't think that all religious people are stupid or bad, in fact, i've met really STUPID people that are atheist, as well as some religious. Same may go with bad people that kills, rape, lies at others, etc... it may go for religious and/or atheist peoples, after all, when it comes to that, "religious" or "atheist" are just words for me, they should be judged by their actions.

And that is my opinion of this, have a nice day.

FireFish said:

Science is ever expanding, changing, learning, so even age old theories which seemed tested by time get changed if needed if some form of proof shows science that it was wrong with its older statements or what they hoped to be proof once in time.

You called me out with things like neanderthal and uneducated, well i call you out with the fact that you ridicule science and atheists by acting like that. It always shames me to see Atheists with such a short fuse and narrow mind that they need to 'attack' in means of words and writing, and when somebody answers back in the same way then its odd or acting butthurt.

way to go !

I wasn't name-calling you specifically... I'm just hostile toward anyone who misuses the word like that because so many people do it intentionally in an effort to mislead people. I probably could have phrased it in a less inflammatory manner, but it just makes me so angry when people misuse the word. I'll be honest, admit to my mistake, and apologize, but I do want you to understand why that made me so mad in the first place. It's so difficult to have a scientific discussion in part because so many people misuse words like that. And yes, I realize that things change, we learn new things all the time, but we can't simply dismiss everything we've learned so far on the basis that it might be replaced by something else in the future in light of new evidence. There's a difference between throwing out what we know because we learned something new and assuming we don't know anything in the first place. It's not like we're just randomly guessing - we're making careful observations and experiments and drawing conclusions on what we observe.

Relativity is pretty conclusively proved at this point. There's a huge pile of evidence substantiating it.

geekmarine said:

Thing is, it's possible to conceive of a universe without causality

See, I can't. At all. I don't see there being any such thing as 'true chaos'. If there is change, there is a cause for change. Perhaps an extremely localized cause. But a cause, with rules (perhaps chaotic rules) governing it, even if we can never hope to understand them.
If there is no change (and thus no 'time' of any form whatsoever)... that doesn't even make sense. How would a universe come into existence without any form of change? If it had change in the past, and loses those properties later on, then causality is valid, but no longer applies. But if a universe never had any means of letting things 'happen', then the universe itself could not have 'happened' in the first place.

I think it's OK.

1. WTF! If there's nothing after this life why would I want to stop living? I've heard a lot of Christians say this. They must be insane. I've also heard a fair number of them say this life isn't worth anything because it's the next one that counts. Damn them.

suicide seems to be something people do when they feel utterly hopeless. Saying one can only find hope in an external power is nonsense because otherwise atheists would be killing themselves in droves. Saying it's stupid and ridiculing those who have suicidal thoughts is ignorant and cruel. If people could pick and choose their thoughts they surely wouldn't pick suicidal ones.

2. I feel I'm wasting my time when I'm wasting my time. I did some of that today. I'll probably do some tomorrow. Today was still somewhat productive and tomorrow probably will be too.

3. Let's just go with the best ideas science has for now. I certainly don't see the logic in there being any kind of causeless, intelligent first cause. I don't need to know for sure, but I'm always interested in learning more. I'm not interested in stories that have no supporting evidence whatsoever.

stewboy said:

See, I can't. At all. I don't see there being any such thing as 'true chaos'. If there is change, there is a cause for change. Perhaps an extremely localized cause. But a cause, with rules (perhaps chaotic rules) governing it, even if we can never hope to understand them.
If there is no change (and thus no 'time' of any form whatsoever)... that doesn't even make sense. How would a universe come into existence without any form of change? If it had change in the past, and loses those properties later on, then causality is valid, but no longer applies. But if a universe never had any means of letting things 'happen', then the universe itself could not have 'happened' in the first place.

You kinda missed the point I was getting at. Our minds are so fundamentally based on causality, it's impossible for them not to think that way. My argument, though, is that something could exist even if your mind can't fathom it, and because the mind can't fathom it either way, I'd rather just not think about it.

Like I said, you can't really fathom what a 5th dimension cube would look like, either - however, even if there is nowhere where such a think exists, we can at least mathematically describe it. Our lack of ability to perceive it does not preclude its possible existence.

Your problem seems to be, "I can't think about it, I can't mentally picture it, therefore, it can't exist." Which is why I use the argument of the fith-dimensional cube. You can't think about it in any meaningful way, and you certainly can't picture it, but it can very definitely exist (probably doesn't, it depends on there being a universe out there with five spatial dimensions, but that's beside the point - it COULD exist).

1. I wouldn't commit suicide, not because I think there's nothing after life, but because I'm not suicidal. Death doesn't scare me, but I don't want to help it along either.

2. Never, at least not seriously.

3. I subscribe to the big bang theory. Of course fundamentalists out there will say that it's only a theory, but as Tim Minchin once said "Evolution is only a theory the same way Gravity is a theory, so why don't you float the fuck away?"

I find the world beautiful and evolution a fascinating subject. The Bible story always seemed a little too man made for my taste, even as a youngster (although when I was younger I was reading Greek, Roman, Egyptian and Norse mythology and drew parallels between their belief systems and Christian beliefs, although monotheist seemed less believable to me than polytheism). Actually now in my early twenties, I would say I'm closer to being an anti-theist, believing that religion is detrimental and we don't actually need it any more now that science is a thing and we are learning more and more about the Universe. But, it [religion] makes people happy and as long as they don't push their beliefs onto others, it really doesn't bother me.

geekmarine said:

My argument, though, is that something could exist even if your mind can't fathom it

Not necessarily. I can't picture a universe where logical absolutes do not apply, but I don't think such a place could exist. Anyway, I've given more reasons than just 'I can't picture it', and I still find them convincing.