Accuracy In Detecting The Spiritual Realm Using "Triangulation"

Over at Sophies Ladder Jeff agrees that accuracy and reliability are important but his view of accuracy and reliability all stem from some "inner knowing". This contradicts commonly held principles about accuracy and reliability which generally holds that the source of the information is known, can be verified, represents real world states and can be depended on to accurately reflect real world states when verification is not a viable option and when planning needs to be done. But for the moment, I'll stipulate the Spiritual Realm exists.

The Sixth Sense, AKA The Spirit Detector
Jeff says
But the real world for the Bible is God and the spiritual realms
Any value placed in accuracy and reliability must therefore be in relation to the spiritual, inward truth.

In this passage he has presumed the existence of the spiritual realm. But he has not defined the spiritual realm. Where does he get the Idea that the spiritual real exists? Does he get it from the Bible? Surely he does not get it from the Bible with as much effort as he is making to distance himself from it. If he knows the spiritual realm exists, and he knows that he has the spirit indwelling, and he gets information from it, then Jeff has a spiritual detector built in. If Jeff has a spiritual detector built in, like he does for colors and sounds, then we probably all do. And in fact we have most of the world exercising their spiritual detectors in one way or another. Muslims, Hindus, (some) Buddhists, Jews, smaller religions outside the scope of the "Big Five" additionally Psychics, New Agers, Tarot Card readers, etc all have their Spiritual Detectors running gathering data that they use to make decisions with. However, there is little consistency in the data they are gathering, but as a I said, there is a little.

Measuring The Effectiveness of The Spirit Detector
Does the spiritual realm that he's talking about apply to the rest of those groups or is it Christian only? Which groups Spiritual Detector is collecting data that represents the state of the real world. In this sense, I mean real world to include the spiritual world. If the spiritual world exists, and it can be detected, it must overlap with humans and our earth. I suppose a good analogy would be like its another dimension. If the spiritual world can be detected, then it can be described, and if it can be described then uncertainty about it can be reduced, and if uncertainty about it can be reduced then we would have some way of measuring it in relation to other descriptions, then we could find which groups spiritual detector is the more accurate. If we can find which groups spiritual detector is more accurate, then we might be able to whittle away at the myriad of religions and their gods that exist today.

Collectors, Custodians, and Consumers
In Information and Data Quality concepts, there are three groups of people that are stakeholders in ensuring quality of accuracy of data and information. They are Collectors, Custodians and Consumers. One person can belong to any or all groups simultaneously. Jeff and the other spiritual detectors are in the Collector and the Consumer group. In IDQ it is presumed that the data collectors goal is accuracy. It is presumed that the information coming from the collectors will represent real world states, but Humans make mistakes so the data collected must be audited to ensure its accuracy. The way this is done is using the concept of "Triangulation".

Triangulation
Triangulation is an approach to data analysis that synthesizes data from multiple sources.
"Triangulation", University of California, San Francisco, Global health Sciences
"Triangulation", Wikipedia
It recognizes the need to cross-check (aka cross-examine) information to ensure accuracy and reliability. The accuracy and reliability that IDQ measures and was designed to obtain cannot be equivocated to suit the observer, it has to be able to be used and applied to such things as Safety in the industries of Health Care, Aviation, Maritime, Nuclear Power, Chemical Engineering, Construction etc.

Humans Make Mistakes And Triangulation Mitigates Them
So now we just need to figure out a way to triangulate the data coming from all those spiritual detectors and find what they have in common. We can take all that data and put it in a set and reduce it to the lowest common denominator and start comparing it to other things that are relatively well understood. As I said above, there is little consistency in the data they are gathering, but there is some. I know one group of items in the spiritual detector set off the top of my head that are common to all of those sets of spiritual detector data, Human Cognitive Bias. Humans make mistakes, that is why there is a need to audit the accuracy of the data collectors. In my opinion, unless there is some way to increase the likelihood of any those spiritual detectors being more accurate than any other, I can only commit to agnosticism about the spiritual realm and, in principal, decisions should not be made using ambiguous information.

Jeff says
"Reliability, on the other hand, I take to mean “can be dependably used” and so, obviously, reliability relates to the purposes intended."

Reliability is not an IDQ dimension, however it clearly is important. But the use of the information does not determine its quality. Poor quality data can be used to make a living with. Its called Fraud. Information can be presented in such a way as to be persuasive whether it accurately represents real world states or not.

TO BE CONTINUED.....

RECOMMENDED READING
Information and Data Quality (IDQ)
* Anchoring Data Quality Dimensions in Ontological Foundations
* Beyond Accuracy: What Data Quality Means To Consumers
* Data Quality Assessment
* Journey to Data Quality, from Amazon

IDQ Applied To The Bible
1. How Accurate is the Bible?
2. Applying Data and Information Quality Principles To The Bible
3. Applying IDQ Principles of Research To The Bible
4. Overview of IDQ Deficiencies Which Are Evident In Scripture
5. Jesus As God From IDQ Design Deficincies
6. "Son of Man" As Jesus From IDQ Deficiencies
7. IDQ Flaw of Meaningless Representation In The Bible

Triangulation
* "Triangulation", University of California, San Francisco, Global health Sciences
* "Triangulation", Wikipedia

IDQ Applied
National Transportation Safety Board information quality standards


10 comments:

Jeff Carter said...

Lee,
Some of your thoughts here are pretty interesting, but allow me to make some clarifications:

If Jeff has a spiritual detector built in, like he does for colors and sounds, then we probably all do.

That's a leap. I gained my "spiritual detector" - my spirit, which has the ability to perceive the Holy Spirit - through salvation, which means being made whole. The fact that I wasn't whole means a part of me was dead, wasn't functioning. The part of me that was functioning was the part that can perceive God and the spiritual realms. Through salvation this dead "organ" was resurrected. This is the very meaning of the central thesis of Christianity, being born again. Thus, if one is not born again, he has no "spiritual detector".

Does the spiritual realm that he's talking about apply to the rest of those groups or is it Christian only?

It applies only to those who are born again.

If the spiritual world can be detected, then it can be described

I question this premise. The fact that we add words constantly to our language is evidence that it is not sufficient to describe reality. Do you not believe that some things are beyond description? How does one describe the indescribable?

Philip R Kreyche said...

Jeff,

That's a leap. I gained my "spiritual detector" - my spirit, which has the ability to perceive the Holy Spirit - through salvation, which means being made whole.

Thus, if one is not born again, he has no "spiritual detector".

Can you show this or demonstrate this?

Do you not believe that some things are beyond description? How does one describe the indescribable?

Is "indescribable" not a description of sorts?

David B. Ellis said...


I gained my "spiritual detector" - my spirit, which has the ability to perceive the Holy Spirit - through salvation, which means being made whole. The fact that I wasn't whole means a part of me was dead, wasn't functioning. The part of me that was functioning was the part that can perceive God and the spiritual realms. Through salvation this dead "organ" was resurrected.


One possibility: what you say above is true.

Another: you merely imagine that you have an "organ" of spiritual perception which is now functioning properly.

The question: what reason is there to think the first possibility is more likely than the second.

Jeff Carter said...

Can you show this or demonstrate this?

A very decent and fair question. Let me explain why I think it's impossible to show or demonstrate to your satisfaction. The words "show" or "demonstrate" have connotations for the objective realm. What I am discussing occurs within the self of a man, in his interiority, something that does not lend itself to the objective. But note that neither can your own self be shown or demonstrated. Perhaps the effects of your self may be shown, but not the self itself. You are the only one that has every seen you. The spirit is on a similar plane.

One other point. A failure in ability to show or demonstrate does not constitute lack of truth. The thing in question may not lend itself to objective truth, but there is another truth - interior truth that is subject to.

Is "indescribable" not a description of sorts?

Well, yes, but how meaningful is it? Silence may be more powerful in this respect.

The question: what reason is there to think the first possibility is more likely than the second.

Another fair and decent question. A satisfying reason cannot be provided to someone outside of me, since the experience is inside of me. I cannot satisfy you on the matter, only myself. Likewise, on you can satisfy yourself concerning the matter. I find the experience of the Holy Spirit credible because I know what it is like to apprehend my own self, and the experience of the Spirit is of that same nature. The Spirit does not come to me as an outside experience. It is within me, closer to me than I am to myself.

Regarding the original matter, I am not disputing the use of IDQ for certain objective situations, but for interior ones.

Lee Randolph said...

Hi Jeff,
so as I said in the article, unless you can show that your experience is something other than Human Cognitive Bias then I'm afraid you are unconvincing.

Human Cognitive Bias does not depend on your philosophy, or world view, it is the framework that supports it and human cognitive bias spans categories of people, from Christians to Atheists.

The way to get around human cognitive bias is with the scientific method, and cross-checking data. Getting rid of human cognitive bias is very hard, make no mistake, but with other human perspectives cross-checking each other it can be overcome.

without resorting to word play, one possibility for things that are indescribable is that they are indescribable because they don't exist.

hmmm, jeff, I'm thinking of something indescribable, can you guess what it is?

Doesn't that just sound silly?

and from your point of view, the persecuting of children as witches in 21st century africa is Justified because there is no way to prove that they are wrong.

when it comes to minimizing harm, you can't beat IDQ. Thats why it plays such a big role in the Safety industry. It is more effective in mitigating the problem of Evil than christianity.

In some cases, not all, the problem of evil is christianity.

even for you, the only way to show those people are wrong is "triangulate" or cross-check it with scripture.
But you wouldn't be the first to try that. They'd just come back at you with the data from their spiritual detectors.

See Jeff, even if Christianity is accurate, it is terrible a reasoning scheme for minimizing harm. And if Christianity is accurate, how is that possible?

Scott said...

Jeff wrote: "That's a leap. I gained my "spiritual detector" - my spirit, which has the ability to perceive the Holy Spirit - through salvation, which means being made whole."

Jeff, when we're asleep, we can dream. But some people have gained the ability to dream while being awake. This takes practice, but it is possible. The same can be said about mindfulness through practicing meditation.

Does the fact that people have "gained" the ability to induce waking dream states or states of exceptional reflection mean they reactivated parts of themselves that was "dead" and wasn't functioning? Are theses states supernatural?

Why is your "spiritual detector" any different?

Jeff wrote [spiritual detectors] applies only to those who are born again.

What exactly does being "born again" mean?

Jeff wrote: The fact that we add words constantly to our language is evidence that it is not sufficient to describe reality. Do you not believe that some things are beyond description? How does one describe the indescribable?

If we cannot sufficiently communicate what you detect with your "spiritual detector", then how can we have meaningful conversations about it? How can it be applied in areas that you, and may other Christians, claim it should be applied? You'd merely go around experiencing that which could only be experienced. Surely, this isn't your position on the holy spirit,is it?

Also, if those with "spiritual detectors" can only describe the tip of the same supernatural iceberg, wouldn't you expect that which they can describe to be consistent? Otherwise, how would you know you're describing the same supernatural iceburg? (or something other than an supernatural iceburg all together)

J.L. Hinman said...

Holy straw man batman! hey my silly method that religious people don't use doesn't work, so that disproves religion!

Lee Randolph said...

Hi JL,
I'm preparing my rebuttal to you, and I'm going to start out with how surprised I am that you seem so bitter.

and how you focused on general atheistic arguments without saying why IDQ design flaws in scripture don't amount to poor quality information.

Do you realize that it is irrelevant what the origin of scripture is? It only matters if its quality information or not. So most of your article is irrelevant as well.

really, "lee randolph has no clothes"?

http://christiancadre.blogspot.com/2009/01/lee-randolph-has-no-clothes.html

David B. Ellis said...


A very decent and fair question. Let me explain why I think it's impossible to show or demonstrate to your satisfaction.


I'm not interested in you demonstrating it to MY satisfaction. I'd like to hear why YOU are satisfied that you are in situation 1: that of having a properly functioning religious awareness, rather than situation 2: mistakenly imagining that you have a properly functioning religious awareness.

Surely you believe many people practicing other religions are in situation 2. What reason do you have for thinking you aren't in the same situation as they?

David B. Ellis said...


I find the experience of the Holy Spirit credible because I know what it is like to apprehend my own self, and the experience of the Spirit is of that same nature. The Spirit does not come to me as an outside experience. It is within me, closer to me than I am to myself.


Exactly what one would expect if it was merely the fruit of your own imagination.