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You are quite correct, Susan. But your point calls for a clarification of how we use language in this context.

If someone calculates the probability of something occurring to be 0.0000000000000000000000000000000000000001, then many people will say that the chance is "zero" when they really mean it to be "virtually zero."

Going the other way, as with DNA matching, one might say that the criminal "is" guilty because the probability of evidence pointing to the criminal is .99999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999. Technically speaking, the language is in accurate for the same reason.

And here we come to a dichotomy that I see very often. When people are taking a positive view on an outcome, when they apply this kind of interpretation they may say that there's a 1 in 10 quadrillion chance that the evidence does not point to the criminal. The positive thinkers here will focus on the 10 quadrillion. If they can't dispute the evidence, which would lower the 10 quadrillion side of the equation, the only recourse for the negative thinkers involves pointing to the 1, saying, So you're telling me there is a chance?

In general, we reject this approach because it ignores serious discussions of evidence and sounds like a cop-out. The only rational approach is to address the evidence head-on, that which led to the 10 quadrillion finding. This, I have found, is one of the easier way to detect a skeptic from a pseudo skeptic, and a reasoned believer from one who accepts things on faith, regardless of the evidence, if necessary.

I have no opinion on whether a universe preceded this one, by the way. I don't care. All I know is that a lot of people throw around "is" and "is not", 1 or 0, when it is more correct to say something like, It is "very, very likely" or "very likely not this or that." That's probably what you're picking up on here.

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Subject Views Written By Posted
Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 45919 Graham Hancock 04-Jun-19 15:43
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 241 Darryl Sloan 04-Jun-19 19:05
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 192 Susan Doris 07-Jun-19 07:13
Definitely not an atheist 202 Robert Jameson 15-Jun-19 07:52
Re: Definitely not an atheist 166 Darryl Sloan 17-Jun-19 10:55
The goldfish analogy 137 Robert Jameson 22-Jun-19 07:23
Re: The goldfish analogy 133 Susan Doris 22-Jun-19 10:53
Re: The goldfish analogy 133 Robert Jameson 22-Jun-19 12:27
Re: The goldfish analogy 137 Susan Doris 22-Jun-19 15:04
Re: The goldfish analogy 137 Eddie Larry 22-Jun-19 19:16
Making something up is terrific and necessary in Science IF 136 drrayeye 22-Jun-19 21:44
Everything is natural 129 greengirl5 23-Jun-19 00:12
Don't stop there 140 drrayeye 23-Jun-19 00:47
Re: Don't stop there 136 hendrik dirker 23-Jun-19 03:35
I met Thomas Kuhn once, Hendrik, 134 drrayeye 23-Jun-19 05:34
From my 'Out of left field' file 126 Robert Jameson 23-Jun-19 09:55
Re: From my 'Out of left field' file 138 Susan Doris 23-Jun-19 12:52
Re: From my 'Out of left field' file 139 Robert Jameson 24-Jun-19 00:52
The paper clip analogy 123 Robert Jameson 23-Jun-19 00:27
Re: The paper clip analogy and chance 135 greengirl5 23-Jun-19 05:07
Monkeys bashing typewriters does not stack up 124 Robert Jameson 23-Jun-19 10:09
I believe you! 122 greengirl5 23-Jun-19 12:23
science jargon 135 drrayeye 23-Jun-19 06:54
Re: The goldfish analogy 131 Darryl Sloan 24-Jun-19 17:56
big bang 126 drrayeye 24-Jun-19 23:45
Re: big bang 122 Robert Jameson 25-Jun-19 03:18
Re: big bang 122 Susan Doris 25-Jun-19 05:16
Science vs. philosophy vs. pop culture 118 drrayeye 25-Jun-19 06:56
Re: Science vs. philosophy vs. pop culture 125 Susan Doris 25-Jun-19 07:15
There is more to science 120 drrayeye 25-Jun-19 12:10
Re: Science vs. philosophy vs. pop culture 115 Eddie Larry 26-Jun-19 21:51
Re: Science vs. philosophy vs. pop culture 129 Susan Doris 27-Jun-19 07:28
Rant of the month 126 drrayeye 27-Jun-19 08:30
Re: Rant of the month 115 greengirl5 27-Jun-19 23:15
Teach your children 123 drrayeye 28-Jun-19 03:36
Re: Teach your children 124 Susan Doris 28-Jun-19 05:11
Re: Teach your children 116 Darryl Sloan 28-Jun-19 08:17
Re: Teach your children 117 Susan Doris 28-Jun-19 10:21
Re: Teach your children 118 Susan Doris 28-Jun-19 13:06
Re: Science vs. philosophy vs. pop culture 112 Eddie Larry 27-Jun-19 19:02
Re: Science vs. philosophy vs. pop culture 117 Robert Jameson 28-Jun-19 07:36
Re: Science vs. philosophy vs. pop culture 111 Eddie Larry 28-Jun-19 14:25
Re: Science vs. philosophy vs. pop culture 113 Darryl Sloan 28-Jun-19 07:47
Evidence for a creator 132 Robert Jameson 28-Jun-19 09:45
Re: Evidence for a creator 129 Susan Doris 28-Jun-19 10:39
Re: Evidence for a creator 128 Robert Jameson 29-Jun-19 07:52
Re: Evidence for a creator 123 Susan Doris 29-Jun-19 09:29
Re: Evidence for a creator 125 Nolondil 30-Jun-19 14:38
Re: Evidence for a creator 114 Susan Doris 30-Jun-19 15:28
Re: Evidence for a creator 113 Eddie Larry 30-Jun-19 18:12
Re: Evidence for a creator 120 Robert Jameson 01-Jul-19 01:49
Re: Evidence for a creator 131 Susan Doris 01-Jul-19 08:12
Re: Evidence for a creator 119 Robert Jameson 01-Jul-19 22:10
Re: Evidence for a creator 113 Susan Doris 02-Jul-19 05:10
Re: Evidence for a creator 142 Robert Jameson 02-Jul-19 06:06
Re: Evidence for a creator 372 Poster Boy 03-Jul-19 17:08
Re: Evidence for a creator 131 drrayeye 29-Jun-19 10:48
Re: Evidence for a creator 118 Robert Jameson 30-Jun-19 01:30
Re: Evidence for a creator 121 Susan Doris 30-Jun-19 04:52
Re: Evidence for a creator and great scientific minds 127 greengirl5 30-Jun-19 05:42
scientistic jargon misses nuances 113 drrayeye 30-Jun-19 12:33
Re: scientistic jargon misses nuances 119 Susan Doris 30-Jun-19 14:02
Re: big bang 117 Darryl Sloan 25-Jun-19 19:26
Re: big bang 118 Susan Doris 26-Jun-19 05:10
Re: The goldfish analogy 114 Eddie Larry 25-Jun-19 00:53
Re: The goldfish analogy 113 Darryl Sloan 25-Jun-19 19:36
Re: The goldfish analogy 117 drrayeye 25-Jun-19 20:13
Re: The goldfish analogy 115 Susan Doris 26-Jun-19 05:16
Re: The goldfish analogy 120 Darryl Sloan 24-Jun-19 17:48
Re: The goldfish analogy 123 Darryl Sloan 24-Jun-19 17:46
Re: The goldfish analogy 122 Susan Doris 25-Jun-19 05:26
Re: The goldfish analogy 121 Darryl Sloan 25-Jun-19 19:43
Re: The goldfish analogy 119 Susan Doris 26-Jun-19 05:25
Re: The goldfish analogy 109 Eddie Larry 26-Jun-19 21:42
Re: The goldfish analogy 123 Darryl Sloan 24-Jun-19 17:30
"self" between the eyes 122 drrayeye 24-Jun-19 23:53
Re: "self" between the eyes 116 Darryl Sloan 25-Jun-19 19:48
Re: "self" between the eyes 116 drrayeye 25-Jun-19 20:09
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 131 rulebook54 24-Jun-19 19:45
Mod Note > rulebook54 - Threaded vs. Flat View 135 Dr. Troglodyte 24-Jun-19 22:25
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 125 Susan Doris 25-Jun-19 05:39
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 125 Susan Doris 25-Jun-19 13:56
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 117 Eddie Larry 25-Jun-19 14:21
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 123 Susan Doris 25-Jun-19 15:12
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 127 Eddie Larry 25-Jun-19 16:21
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 121 Darryl Sloan 25-Jun-19 20:18
the kingdom of God is within you 121 drrayeye 25-Jun-19 20:36
Re: the kingdom of God is within you 117 Susan Doris 26-Jun-19 05:39
Re: the kingdom of God is within you 115 drrayeye 26-Jun-19 06:33
Re: the kingdom of God is within you 110 greengirl5 26-Jun-19 07:10
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 119 Eddie Larry 25-Jun-19 20:42
Me 121 greengirl5 26-Jun-19 03:08
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 115 Susan Doris 26-Jun-19 05:31
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 119 Darryl Sloan 26-Jun-19 20:20
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 126 Darryl Sloan 25-Jun-19 20:04
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 122 Eddie Larry 25-Jun-19 20:37
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 119 Darryl Sloan 26-Jun-19 20:22
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 123 Eddie Larry 26-Jun-19 20:34
Cats and dogs 111 greengirl5 27-Jun-19 23:27
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 130 Susan Doris 26-Jun-19 06:54
July coming up 117 greengirl5 26-Jun-19 07:41
Cosmic consciousness-theism! 122 greengirl5 26-Jun-19 07:50
Re: July coming up 117 Susan Doris 26-Jun-19 09:08
Re: July coming up 117 greengirl5 26-Jun-19 10:46
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 121 Darryl Sloan 26-Jun-19 20:31
love from above 127 drrayeye 26-Jun-19 23:51
Re: love from above 117 Susan Doris 27-Jun-19 07:36
Kohlberg 116 drrayeye 27-Jun-19 08:06
Re: Kohlberg 109 Susan Doris 27-Jun-19 11:04
Piaget 121 drrayeye 27-Jun-19 19:21
Re: Piaget 116 Eddie Larry 27-Jun-19 21:49
Re: Piaget 111 Susan Doris 28-Jun-19 05:23
Re: love from above 103 Darryl Sloan 30-Jun-19 18:43
No time! ? ? 110 greengirl5 30-Jun-19 23:49
Re: Welcome to Darryl Sloan our author of the month for June 2019 143 Thanos5150 27-Jun-19 05:27
It's not in the text 134 drrayeye 26-Jun-19 21:25
Re: It's not in the text 129 Susan Doris 27-Jun-19 07:41
How Suart saves his family 119 drrayeye 27-Jun-19 08:17
Re: How Suart saves his family 133 Susan Doris 27-Jun-19 11:07
No 125 drrayeye 27-Jun-19 18:21
Am I the only one? 133 greengirl5 27-Jun-19 23:53
Re: Am I the only one? 120 Susan Doris 28-Jun-19 05:33
Re: Am I the only one? 115 greengirl5 28-Jun-19 08:00
Re: It's not in the text 129 Darryl Sloan 28-Jun-19 09:08
Let's try a different approach 129 drrayeye 28-Jun-19 15:42
Re: Let's try a different approach 115 Darryl Sloan 30-Jun-19 18:58
You are a good guy! 138 greengirl5 28-Jun-19 23:51
Farewell, everyone! 136 Darryl Sloan 30-Jun-19 20:22
Re: Farewell, everyone! 123 drrayeye 30-Jun-19 23:11
lets hear it for the universe 119 jazzmumbles 01-Jul-19 00:55
Re: Farewell, everyone! 119 Eddie Larry 01-Jul-19 02:47
Re: Farewell, everyone! 129 Robert Jameson 01-Jul-19 05:55
Re: Farewell, everyone! 130 Susan Doris 01-Jul-19 08:18


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