X-Message-Number: 10252
Date: Sun, 16 Aug 1998 10:02:06 -0700
From: Rand Simberg <>

John Rivaz commented:

>The point I am making is that the concept of a resurrection myth is 
>fulfilling a deep human need.

I agree, but that doesn't explain why any individual latches on to any
specific resurrection myth.  This remains a core human value that is
underivable from biology.

Scott Badger makes a similar comment to John's, and my response is the
same.  In addition, he notes that:

>The fundamental goal is genotypic survival which requires phenotypic
>survival.  The phenotype is designed to facilitate the survival of the
>genotype, not the other way around.

Whose fundamental goal?  Certainly the fundamental goal of the gene is
genotypic survival.  However, the phenotype has its own goals, based on its
own value selection, which may or may not correspond to the gene's goals.
This discussion is about the former.

Finally, he hopes that I'm "not suggesting that universally shared ideas 
accurate ideas."  Since I don't know how to evaluate whether an idea is
"accurate," absent the context of a value set, I don't know how to answer
this question.

Finally, Timur Rozenfeld says that:

>I was simply referring to the statement that values are axiomatic which I

>disagreed with. As for Christianity, I don't see it as a rational >value 
(except maybe for medicinal purposes). 

Who cares whether it's rational or not?  Only rationalists.  It remains a
value, nonetheless, and a very powerful one.

>You would have to present some
>arguments to show that it is a rational value that aids in the
>survival/flourishing of one's life.

No, I don't.  I only have to show that it is a value important to a given
individual.  Only that individual is in a position to judge whether their
value set enhances their life or not.  Rationality is only relevant if
rationality is part of their value set.

And finally, in one more tilt at the strawman, he states:

>I agree that goals can be pretty fundamental as you say in the first part of
>the paragraph. I disagree that you can't show that those values are

Please point to me an instance in which I have stated that those values
either are, or need to be, rational.  Rationality is an axiom.  It is not
the only one.
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