Is objectivity unrealistic?

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  • #36
Iacchus32
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Originally posted by Kerrie
personally i feel that although as human beings we will never be purely objective, striving towards objectivity without denying our subjectivity is a true balance of understanding our reality...
Thank you! This is really all I was trying to convey. That although it's important to strive for objectivity, we mustn't forsake the fact that we're "subjective beings" -- with a "personal life" -- for that would be akin to denying our own existence.
 
  • #37
Iacchus32
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Originally posted by maximus
first of all (a small techincal note) yes, without the sun humans wouldn't survive, but there are organisms not dependant on it.
And yet what are the two primary qualities about the sun which makes life possible on earth? Light and heat right? Or, to be more technical, the light and heat which are "radiated" from the sun. Whereas the qualities of the sun in our solar system aren't altogether different than the qualities of suns in other solar systems, so there must be something similar here or, perhaps even "universal."


now, the truth is that there is now goodness. or at least there is no universal goodness. no "goodness" property. humans percieve sunlight to be good becuase it is essential to our survival. it's a matter of evolution. evolution wouldn't have permited humans who hated sunlight to live; we need it. the universe doesn't give a care if we live or not, it will go through its cycles completly impersonally.
I think that was a typo. Are saying the truth is that there is "no" goodness? But people care don't they? Or, at least so it would seem ... And yet maybe the Universe does give a damn, by allowing us to give damn? By which we are then capable of acknowledging such a relationship exists.


the relationship between good and truth is subjective and of no conciquence to the universe beyond earth. (humanity in particular)
And yet what is the relationship between good and truth, if not the relationship between objectivity and subjectivity? And, while the idea may not click at first, what if I were to say good can only remain good so long as it remains "in context" with truth? Likewise, what good are our feelings, if not held within context of "rational thought?" ... And what are you denying your own existence here?
 
  • #38
quantumdude
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I’m going to have one more crack trying to straighten you out here.

Tom: I'll say. You're taking a thread that is supposed to be about objectivity and turning it into a circus of metaphors.

Iacchus32: No, I'm just trying to show the relationship between the "objective truth" and the "subjective good."

And you’re doing it in a whirlwind of meaningless metaphors! When people “show” things, they typically do it with some kind of reasoning. But not you. No, you try to do it with creative writing and illogic, going from light and heat to truth and goodness, respectively. The discussion of objective/subjective is only tacked on by you, by simply assigning objectiveness to truth and subjectiveness to goodness. There is no need to even bring up heat and light!

Tom: They might not have had as sophisticated understanding as we do today, but certainly people at that time knew the difference between the physical and the abstract. "Light" and "heat" are physical phenomena that are sensed. "Truth" and "good" are abstract ideas.

Iacchus32: Then what does e=MC2 mean? This is abstract, and yet doesn't it belie something physical?

For some reason, you seem to see a contradiction in these two ideas, when there quite obviously is none. If you have read any of my posts to Alexander about “causal math”, you will know that I regard mathematical relations (such as E=mc2) as a description of physical reality. Even if you had not read those posts, I think that point is fairly self-evident.

Tom: The rest of this post is just more word games. On to the next one...

Iacchus32: Yes, you putting words into my mouth ...

Stop being stupid. This is ad hominem, and a false one at that. The one and only time I paraphrased you, you responded with “You got it!”. By your own admission, I am not putting words into your mouth. Indeed, it would be quite difficult for me to put anything in your mouth, with your foot in there all the time.

Tom: Oh, I get it. If the sun weren't here, we wouldn't be here. If we weren't here, then there would be no such human things as "truth" or "goodness". And, the sun produces light and heat. Therefore, light is (objective) truth and heat is (subjective) goodness.

Put down the bong, son!

Iacchus32: You got it! (except for the part about the bong i guess?). We see by the light of the sun (a correlative of truth), and are sustained by its warmth (a correlative of good). Or, another way of putting it is, we see by the light of His Truth, and are sustained by the warmth of His Love.

Err…Actually, I posted that argument as, first of all a synopsis of your posts, and second an example of bad reasoning (hence, “Put down the bong, son!”). For crying out loud, you’re drawing a conclusion from a literary device! That is neither logic nor philosophy. In fact, it does not even rise to the level of religious opinion.

Tom: Do you have anything to say about objectivity?

Iacchus32: Yes, that a relationship exists between what is objective and what is subjective, and the one can't exist without the other, not without being complete anyway.

Finally, something that is on topic! I disagree, of course, but at least it’s something that actually has to do with the discussion.

Objective reality—by the very nature of what it means to be “objective”—can indeed exist without the subjective reality, but the converse is not true. In other words, the universe does not care if there exist conscious minds to experience it, but subjective realities depend on the existence of the objective.

Hey don't start yanking my chain if you don't want me to respond (as such). What I'm saying here is just as fundamental as the difference between objectivity and subjectivity, in fact it goes a long way to show what that difference is. I'm sorry if you don't see it that way.

Yanking your chain? No, dear boy, I am trying to reason with you and trying to get you to make some sense. And no, there is nothing profound about your loose, arbitrary connection between light/heat and truth/goodness. That’s the same level of philosophy as “Life is like a box of chocolates…”. I’m sorry if you don’t see it that way.

edit: fixed a bracket and an omission
 
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  • #39
quantumdude
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Originally posted by Iacchus32
I think it would be fair to say that reality is "fixed," and yet each one of us is going to perceive it differently, and react to it differently, and ultimately add something to it -- or subtract -- in which case you can say reality is also affected (or produced) by our minds.

That is one viewpoint, namely that of idealism, which places mind first and matter second. The problem with idealism is that it requires a god. In view of a total lack of evidence of a god, I go for the flipside: materialism, which places matter first and mind second. In that case, I say not that our minds create "reality", but that material reality creates our minds.

And yet what if you were but a newly born brain cell, born of an even "greater mind" -- i.e., the microcosm of the macrocosm? Doesn't that sound the least bit plausible? (as an analogy anyway).

No, it doesn't sound plausible at all. There is no evidence that a mind can exist without a brain.

Isn't the mind itself "a collective" of smaller entities, called brain cells? And wouldn't it be possible for a brain cell to function on its own (under the proper conditions) if separated from the rest of the brain?

What do you mean "function"? It would have cellular functions, but it certainly would not be able to think. Consciousness is a property that emerges from a distributed network, whose elements themselves are not conscious.
 
  • #40
Another God
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*agrees with Tom*
 
  • #41
Iacchus32
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Originally posted by Tom
I’m going to have one more crack trying to straighten you out here.
Try to straighten me out huh? :wink:


And you’re doing it in a whirlwind of meaningless metaphors! When people “show” things, they typically do it with some kind of reasoning. But not you. No, you try to do it with creative writing and illogic, going from light and heat to truth and goodness, respectively. The discussion of objective/subjective is only tacked on by you, by simply assigning objectiveness to truth and subjectiveness to goodness. There is no need to even bring up heat and light!
I don't think you read the original thread very closely ...

Originally posted by kerrie
here is the definition i am referring to...yet, what i am wondering is, can objectivity be unrealistic because human beings are ultimately and absolutely subjective creatures when we observe, hear, think, feel, react and sense?
I don't see that this is anything other than a comparison between objectivity and subjectivity. And what did she get through saying in her last post? ...


Originally posted by kerrie
personally i feel that although as human beings we will never be purely objective, striving towards objectivity without denying our subjectivity is a true balance of understanding our reality...
Can't you see that this is what she's talking about?


For some reason, you seem to see a contradiction in these two ideas, when there quite obviously is none. If you have read any of my posts to Alexander about “causal math”, you will know that I regard mathematical relations (such as E=mc2) as a description of physical reality. Even if you had not read those posts, I think that point is fairly self-evident.
But it sounds like what you're saying is that you can't use an abstract idea for analogy for something which is physical? And yet what is it about objectivity except to "see" the truth? And what is it about subjectivity except to experience "the good" of that truth?


Stop being stupid. This is ad hominem, and a false one at that. The one and only time I paraphrased you, you responded with “You got it!”. By your own admission, I am not putting words into your mouth. Indeed, it would be quite difficult for me to put anything in your mouth, with your foot in there all the time.
How does one define stupidity? An unwillingness to listen perhaps? :wink:

And don't you think it's about time you dropped the condescending attitude?


Err…Actually, I posted that argument as, first of all a synopsis of your posts, and second an example of bad reasoning (hence, “Put down the bong, son!”). For crying out loud, you’re drawing a conclusion from a literary device! That is neither logic nor philosophy. In fact, it does not even rise to the level of religious opinion.
How about a "hybrid idea," you know, where the one balances out the other?


Finally, something that is on topic! I disagree, of course, but at least it’s something that actually has to do with the discussion.
I think that's the whole problem here. Just because you can't with agree with the basis of what I'm trying to say (hence the basis for what I almost always try to say), doesn't mean you have any business tossing out the rest of it. That's called rail-roading somebody.


Objective reality—by the very nature of what it means to be “objective”—can indeed exist without the subjective reality, but the converse is not true. In other words, the universe does not care if there exist conscious minds to experience it, but subjective realities
And a cold bleek universe it would be ... bereft of any life.


Yanking your chain? No, dear boy, I am trying to reason with you and trying to get you to make some sense. And no, there is nothing profound about your loose, arbitrary connection between light/heat and truth/goodness. That’s the same level of philosophy as “Life is like a box of chocolates…”. I’m sorry if you don’t see it that way.
Actually, if anything, I think you owe me an apology, "dude."
 
  • #42
Iacchus32
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Originally posted by Tom
That is one viewpoint, namely that of idealism, which places mind first and matter second. The problem with idealism is that it requires a god. In view of a total lack of evidence of a god, I go for the flipside: materialism, which places matter first and mind second. In that case, I say not that our minds create "reality", but that material reality creates our minds.
No, it's not idealism, it's a "hybrid," meaning it incorporates both sides, because no issue can only have one side -- which, is what it sounds like you're trying tell me ... Or coerce?


No, it doesn't sound plausible at all. There is no evidence that a mind can exist without a brain.
Then perhaps you better read it again. What I'm saying is isn't it possible that we, as human beings, can be viewed as individual brain cells of the "greater mind" as whole?


What do you mean "function"? It would have cellular functions, but it certainly would not be able to think. Consciousness is a property that emerges from a distributed network, whose elements themselves are not conscious.
Yet that's the whole thing, because we are not conscious of the "greater mind," i.e., the greater mind which is "consciousness itself."
 
  • #43
quantumdude
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Originally posted by Iacchus32
I don't think you read the original thread very closely ...

LOL

No, Iacchus, you're confusing me with yourself. I commented on the original thread, and Kerrie thought my remarks were right on.

Can't you see that this is what she's talking about?

I know exactly what she is talking about, and it has nothing to do with sunlight or any other metaphor, which is what I have been trying to tell you all along.

But it sounds like what you're saying is that you can't use an abstract idea for analogy for something which is physical? And yet what is it about objectivity except to "see" the truth? And what is it about subjectivity except to experience "the good" of that truth?

What I have been saying is that abstract ideas can be used to represent physical reality.

How does one define stupidity? An unwillingness to listen perhaps? :wink:

No, an unwillingness to listen is more like "stubborness" than "stupidity". "Stupidity" is a relcuctance or inability to think logically.

And don't you think it's about time you dropped the condescending attitude?

Don't you think it's about time to stop posting gibberish?

How about a "hybrid idea," you know, where the one balances out the other?

Sorry, but a hybrid of "illogic" and "metaphor" doesn't bring about anything.

I think that's the whole problem here. Just because you can't with agree with the basis of what I'm trying to say (hence the basis for what I almost always try to say), doesn't mean you have any business tossing out the rest of it. That's called rail-roading somebody.

I am not "rail-roading" you, nor am I dismissing what you say out of hand. I have expounded upon all my objections.

Actually, if anything, I think you owe me an apology, "dude."

Don't hold your breath. When you post nonsense, I am within bounds to call it nonsense. My comments are directed at your ideas, not at you (except my response to your ad hominem).

edit: typo
 
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  • #44
quantumdude
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Originally posted by Iacchus32
No, it's not idealism, it's a "hybrid," meaning it incorporates both sides, because no issue can only have one side -- which, is what it sounds like you're trying tell me ...

So you are talking dualism then?

Or coerce?

???

Then perhaps you better read it again. What I'm saying is isn't it possible that we, as human beings, can be viewed as individual brain cells of the "greater mind" as whole?

Oh. Well, that makes even less sense. This is just wild speculation on your part, and without some justification for that viewpoint I really have no desire to get into it.
 
  • #45
Another God
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I just wrote a whole essay on Nagel and Chalmers and how science can go about identifying subjectivity, and what it is etc...

This topic can get a little tedious.
 
  • #46
quantumdude
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Originally posted by Another God
I just wrote a whole essay on Nagel and Chalmers and how science can go about identifying subjectivity, and what it is etc...

Well...?

This topic can get a little tedious.

It's already tedious. It may as well be tediously on-topic. Out with it, man!
 
  • #47
drag
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Greetings !
Originally posted by Tom
Can objectivity be unrealistic? I would turn that around: I think that a lack of belief in objective reality is unrealistic. It is true that I can only prove to myself that I am conscious. Perhaps that all of reality only exists as my mental states? Bah. I reject that because, as I review the contents of my mind (the only thing to which I really have access), I see no overall blueprint of the universe. I was not born endowed with a knowledge or understanding of the laws of nature. And yet, in order to deny objective reality, I have to say that the blueprint is there, because without objective reality, all of reality is created by my mind.
...
I gave one reason above: My seeming total lack of a priori knowledge of the universe. Again, if the universe is a creation of my mind, then I must have a complete knowledge of its workings prior to observing it. But I do not have such knowledge. Therefore, the universe is not a creation of my mind. It follows that there must be an objective reality of which my mind is merely a part.
That is ridiculous, no offense. What kind of a blueprint
do you want ? And if there was something like this - would
you not need a blueprint for that something, too ? :wink:
You are trying to reason of existence - all obsevation
through parts of itself. That makes no sense because a proof
of any kind has to be based on an independent reason(as far
as we've done it so far, at least).
Originally posted by Tom
A second reason, which is related to the first, is the problem of other minds. The notion that my mental states are the only mental states (the height of subjectivity) is untenable when faced with the evidence that other bodies that look similar to mine exhibit behaviors similar to mine under the same stimuli/stressors. For instance, when someone close to me dies (stimulus), I cry (behavior) because I am sad (mental state). When a person close to someone else dies (stimulus), that person cries (behavior). Given the frequency and plurality of these stimuli-behavior correlations, and the similarity to my own similar behavior under the same stimuli, I cannot help but conclude that the bodies I observe have mental states associated with them, despite the fact that I do not have access to any mental states other than my own.
Ridiculous, no offense, for the same reason. You wish
to define the whole using constituents and yet the constituents
are also defined by the whole. These are just self-referential
"reasons". I could think of many other such "arguments"
but they are just irrelevant from the start because the
very reasoning I, apparently, use to produce them is
self-referential in terms of the same whole I'm trying to
reason about.

Doubt or shout !

Peace and long life.
 
  • #48
Royce
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Agreed that the reasons and reasoning Tom gives are self referential;
but, at this level of reasoning it is all that is available.
We start with, "I am." The ulitmate self referential statement.

The next question to ask; "Is are there any other 'I's?"
This is one step from being self referentioal; but, since we have only established the "I am.", We are still restricted to self referential statements because that is all the we have.

Beyound these, we can step by step deduce the universe and objective reality, all through subjective self referential reasoning that gradually gives way to more and more objective reasoning, experiment and evidence.

Once we have reached this point, ie. objective reality via subjective self referential reasoning, why do we then deny the reality of the subjective, self referential? Is this not a contradiction in reasoning?

If we deny the existance of subjectivity are we not denying our own existance?
 
  • #49
Iacchus32
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Originally posted by kerrie
Oh boy, if only Lifegazer were here...
Hmm ... I wonder why kerrie brought this up in the first place? After clearly stating we were "subjective beings" -- which we are -- and asking how unrealistic objectivity was? So I somehow sensed the discussion was about objectivity versus subjectivity -- as most everyone else did by their replies -- and that the discussion was open to comments on "spirituality."


Originally posted by Kerrie
it is the scientific way to claim there is an objective reality because of what we observe outside ourselves, but ultimately that reality is being filtered through 5 (maybe 6 for some :wink: ) subjective senses that are affected by personal experiences...
Doesn't this sound like she might want to talk about "subjective experiences," just a little? ...


Originally posted by Iacchus32
So what you're saying is that realiy can only be interpreted "from within." Which to me belies the fact that there's a "spiritual reality" as well.
And here is my reply ...


Originally posted by Kerrie
logically that would be correct if you believe spirituality is not within you...i see spirituality within me...
And how can I possibly not reply to this to add clarification, because this is obviously not what I meant. And doesn't it look like she was open to a "spiritual discussion?" In which case I wouldn't have bothered with the following reply ...


No, what I'm saying is that if reality can only be perceived from within, then the understanding of that reality, and hence the understanding of ourselves, ultimately entails the "journey within," and so alludes to a greater "Spiritual Reality."

Whereas the form (truth) is external and the essence (life itself or good) is internal. Which is to say, the internal reality is far greater than the external reality -- or perhaps not while we're of "this world?" -- because it entails the "life within."

Do you think this is what it possibly means when the scriptures say, "The love of the world (external reality) puts you at emnity with God" (internal reality)?
Wow! This is it isn't it? I didn't realize I had put it so succinctly until I did the cut & paste just now. Almost a direct confrontation to those who have an aversion to such notions as an "inner-world."

So it's really not me is it? It's what I'm saying (at least in this instance) that's getting "some" people up in arms. Perhaps I'm not the one who should take offense then?

Anyway, I was going to say I couldn't understand why Tom was ragging on me so much about something which obviously wasn't out of line, but perhaps that isn't necessary now? For indeed, The Truth has been known to have this kind of effect on people.
 
  • #50
drag
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Greetings !
Originally posted by Royce
Agreed that the reasons and reasoning Tom gives are self referential;
but, at this level of reasoning it is all that is available.
Indeed.
However, the line between science and the greater whole -
philosophy is between "closed-loop" reasoning - a certain
accepted reasoning and observation - one leads to the other and
back and provides mutual answers, and the "open-loop" reasoning
which tries to be "a reasoning without reasoning".

This is rather like trying to pull yourself (and your horse )
out of a swamp by pulling on your own hair. :wink:

Live long and prosper.
 
  • #51
Iacchus32
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Originally posted by Royce
Agreed that the reasons and reasoning Tom gives are self referential;
but, at this level of reasoning it is all that is available.
We start with, "I am." The ulitmate self referential statement.

The next question to ask; "Is are there any other 'I's?"
This is one step from being self referentioal; but, since we have only established the "I am.", We are still restricted to self referential statements because that is all the we have.

Beyound these, we can step by step deduce the universe and objective reality, all through subjective self referential reasoning that gradually gives way to more and more objective reasoning, experiment and evidence.

Once we have reached this point, ie. objective reality via subjective self referential reasoning, why do we then deny the reality of the subjective, self referential? Is this not a contradiction in reasoning?

If we deny the existance of subjectivity are we not denying our own existance?
Are you trying to tell me you have an external reference point outside of yourself? How can that be? Then by all means jump out of your skin and tell me how it feels! :wink:

I don't think so, you would be dead! Unless of course you're one of those people who practices "out of the body experiences," but that only belies the fact that we have a soul. Which is also "self-referential."


Originally posted by Royce
Once we have reached this point, ie. objective reality via subjective self referential reasoning, why do we then deny the reality of the subjective, self referential? Is this not a contradiction in reasoning?

If we deny the existance of subjectivity are we not denying our own existance?
Ooops! Sorry, I didn't catch the last couple of lines there. :wink:
 
  • #52
drag
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Originally posted by Royce
Once we have reached this point, ie. objective reality via subjective self referential reasoning, why do we then deny the reality of the subjective, self referential? Is this not a contradiction in reasoning?
Nope, this is a contradiction OF reasoning. :wink:
 
  • #53
quantumdude
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Originally posted by drag
That is ridiculous, no offense. What kind of a blueprint
do you want ? And if there was something like this - would
you not need a blueprint for that something, too ?

Let’s break the argument down more simply.

Assume that the universe is created by my mind. I observe that the universe behaves in an orderly, predictable manner according to identifiable laws (which are approximations, but they are very good ones). If my mind is the source of the universe, then those laws should be in my mind somehow. But when I examine the contents of my mind, they aren’t there. So I conclude that my original assumption was false: The universe is not created by my mind.

Originally posted by drag
You are trying to reason of existence - all obsevation
through parts of itself. That makes no sense because a proof
of any kind has to be based on an independent reason(as far
as we've done it so far, at least).

No. The conclusion I reached was not used as a premise.

Originally posted by drag
Ridiculous, no offense, for the same reason. You wish
to define the whole using constituents and yet the constituents
are also defined by the whole.

???

No. This is an inductive argument based on observation. If one accepts the first argument, then the suggestion that the other people I observe are not creations of my mind, but are real bodies moving around “out there”.

Originally posted by drag
These are just self-referential
"reasons
(snip)

Originally posted by Royce
Agreed that the reasons and reasoning Tom gives are self referential;
but, at this level of reasoning it is all that is available.
We start with, "I am." The ulitmate self referential statement.

Obviously, neither of you knows what “self-referential” means. Perhaps you mean “circular”? If so, you are still wrong, because I did not use a circular argument. My first argument is deductively valid, and my second argument is a strong inductive argument.

The point that is most vulnerable to redress is my premise from the first argument:

If my mind is the source of the universe, then those laws should be in my mind somehow.

If you want to go into that further, then we can, but please no more of this nonsense about how my argument is “self-referential”. At least learn what the term means before you throw it at me.
 
  • #54
drag
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Greetings !
Originally posted by Tom
Let’s break the argument down more simply.
Let's do that. :wink:
Originally posted by Tom
Assume that the universe is created by my mind.
O.K.
Originally posted by Tom
I observe that the universe behaves in an orderly,
predictable manner according to identifiable laws (which are approximations, but they are very good ones).
Please, define "orderly and predictable".
Originally posted by Tom
If my mind is the source of the universe, then those laws
should be in my mind somehow. But when I examine the contents of my mind, they aren’t there.
How do you "examine the contents of a mind" ?

Not to mention that you're making a number of additional assumptions: that you - the mind is conscious, that the "mind" has "contents", that you can examine it, that you observe - able to proccess
and more.
Originally posted by Tom
So I conclude that my original assumption was false: The
universe is not created by my mind.
In short, you took an assumption and then applied YOUR
reasoning to it and arrived at a conclusion that the
Universe is not just in your mind.
Congratulations !

That means you are a materialist and your position is as
unbased and seemingly unprovable as the opposite mind hypothesys.
Originally posted by Tom
No. This is an inductive argument based on observation. If one accepts the first argument, then the suggestion that the other people I observe are not creations of my mind, but are real bodies moving around “out there”.
Why should I accept any arguments ? :wink:
Originally posted by Tom
Obviously, neither of you knows what “self-referential” means. Perhaps you mean “circular”? If so, you are still wrong, because I did not use a circular argument. My first argument is deductively valid, and my second argument is a strong inductive argument.
Deductivly valid ?!
Originally posted by Tom
The point that is most vulnerable to redress is my premise
from the first argument:

If my mind is the source of the universe, then those laws should be in my mind somehow.
But, they ARE in your mind ! They are what you observe -
and that is your mind according to the enitial assumption. :wink:

Are you assuming a sort of frame for the observation = Universe
to shape itself according to if it's all in the mind ?
If so what's the frame for that frame ?
Also, why should you ask such a question in the first place ?
Why do you assume causality ?
Originally posted by Tom
If you want to go into that further, then we can, but please no more of this nonsense about how my argument is “self-referential”. At least learn what the term means before you throw it at me.
Well, I would not presume to misuse complicated terms
that I have a difficulty of understanding. My objections
are very simple and basic and do not require complicated
terms. Please, let me know if I can rephrase self-referential
and the other similar terms into simpler ones that I will
be able to properly reason with on my low level.

Doubt or shout !

Peace and long life.
 
  • #55
Royce
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Tom, "Self-referential" means referring to self. This is an invalid form of logic and in etymology. It does not mean circlular reasoning. It means to definine something by using itself in the definition.

I was, and am, supporting your argument.

I then carried it a bit further to point out that by using the subjective to validate the objective we then validate the subjective also. To do otherwise is a contradiction.

1. I or you use the subjective and self-referential (A) to
eventually, using you perfectly logical and valid argument,
prove the existance of objective reality (B).

2. If A is true then B is true.

3. This includes the reverse, If B is true, A is true.

4. By the same logic if A is untrue, B is untrue.

In otherwords by your reasoning if objective reality exists then subjective reality must also be true.

Iacchus, No, in this line of reasoning there is no external point of reference, nor is there any need for one.

Drag, Yes that is excactly what this line of reasoning is, pulling oneself up by ones bootstrap. That is why it is called bootstrapping in computer jargon. It is however the only way to proceed beyound the one absolute given starting point in philosophy and logic, ie "I am."
 
  • #56
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Originally posted by drag
Please, define "orderly and predictable".

I mean that the phenomena I observe can be predicted accurately using the laws of nature as codified by science.

How do you "examine the contents of a mind" ?

One does it by mentally reviewing one’s knowledge.

Not to mention that you're making a number of additional assumptions: that you - the mind is conscious,
that the "mind" has "contents", that you can examine it, that you observe - able to proccess
and more.

So what? These are the most basic assumptions a person can make. I know I am conscious, because I am thinking and feeling. I know my mind has contents, because I know things. I know I can review those contents, because I can think about the things I have learned. I know that my mind is able to process, because I can deduce things from what I know, and the deductions also conform to my observations.

What’s more, you know that these things are true of yourself.

In short, you took an assumption and then applied YOUR
reasoning to it and arrived at a conclusion that the
Universe is not just in your mind.
Congratulations !

Yes, that’s right. There is no such thing as proving things in reality absolutely. Assumptions always have to be made. The best anyone can do is assume the premises that are more reasonable than their negations. I assume the negation of the premise, “the laws of nature are stored in my mind”, because when I consider all that I know, those laws are not there. I have to learn them by taking physics classes!

That means you are a materialist and your position is as
unbased and seemingly unprovable as the opposite mind hypothesys.

Both are unprovable, but that does not mean that solipsism is as plausible as materialism. For instance, to accept solipsism I have to accept that I have an innate knowledge of the workings of the universe, because solipsism says that the universe is a creation of my mind. But the fact is that I do not have such knowledge. My “innate understanding” of the workings of the universe pretty much conforms to Newtonian mechanics, because that is an accurate description of everyday experience. Since my “common-sensical” understanding of how the universe works is shaped by everyday experience, and that understanding is fundamentally flawed, that suggests to me that it was shaped by input from an external universe, rather than coming from within.

Why should I accept any arguments ? :wink:

If the premises are reasonably well established, and the logic is valid, then you have reason to accept an argument. Is that not obvious?

Deductivly valid ?!

*sigh*

Drag, I am not going to run around in circles with you over this. Deductive validity is not a matter of opinion. It is just as certain as 2+2=4. Either you accept the propositional calculus, or you do not.

I’ll explain it once. My first argument proceeded as follows:

Here are the statements:
p: An orderly, predictable universe was created by my mind.
q: My mind must have innate knowledge of the workings of that universe.

Here is the argument:
1. p (Premise)
2. p-->q (Premise)
3. ~q (Premise)
4. Therefore, ~p (Conclusion)

It’s a simple reductio ad absurdum argument,and it is deductively valid.

But, they ARE in your mind ! They are what you observe –

As I already explained, I have reasons for rejecting that the universe is only in my mind. I find it more reasonable to accept “p-->q” above than “~(p-->q)”.

and that is your mind according to the enitial assumption.:wink:

As I said, I am working via reductio ad absurdum. Surely you have done indirect proofs in your math courses?

Well, I would not presume to misuse complicated terms
that I have a difficulty of understanding. My objections
are very simple and basic and do not require complicated
terms. Please, let me know if I can rephrase self-referential
and the other similar terms into simpler ones that I will
be able to properly reason with on my low level.

FYI, “self-referential” has nothing to do with this discussion. That is a term that applies to formal systems, not the universe.
 
  • #57
quantumdude
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Originally posted by Royce
Tom, "Self-referential" means referring to self. This is an invalid form of logic and in etymology.

Definition: A collection of statements is self-referential if it refers to the truth values of the constituent statements.

Example 1:
This sentence is false.

Example 2:
The sentence below is true.
The sentence above is false.

It does not mean circlular reasoning.

I know that, but since I did not use any self-referential statements, I was at a loss for what you two meant.
 
  • #58
drag
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Greetings Royce !
Originally posted by Royce
Drag, Yes that is excactly what this line of reasoning is, pulling oneself up by ones bootstrap. That is why it is called bootstrapping in computer jargon. It is however the only way to proceed...
?!?!!?!!?!!!?!?!?!?!?
BS !!!
(No offense. But com'mon ! )

Let me try this:
"I assume that everything is in my mind.

I see that I am able to reason with what I see.

If I am able to reason with what I see then clearly
I know the rules and laws in some basic form or else
why should I be making any sense of it all.

If I have this fundumental basis then all must be in my mind."

Case closed.
(NOTE: In NO WAY, is the above really considered by myself to
make any real sense. But, it sure sounds better than Tom's
argument, doesn't it ? )

Doubt or shout !

Peace and long life.
 
  • #59
quantumdude
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Originally posted by Royce
1. I or you use the subjective and self-referential (A) to
eventually, using you perfectly logical and valid argument,
prove the existance of objective reality (B).

2. If A is true then B is true.

3. This includes the reverse, If B is true, A is true.

No, #3 is wrong. As I said in my post to drag, one of my premises has the form:

p-->q.

This does not entail

q-->p.

4. By the same logic if A is untrue, B is untrue.

Again, no. p-->q entails ~q-->~p, not ~p-->~q.

Drag, Yes that is excactly what this line of reasoning is, pulling oneself up by ones bootstrap. That is why it is called bootstrapping in computer jargon. It is however the only way to proceed beyound the one absolute given starting point in philosophy and logic, ie "I am."

Hopefully you can now see that that is not what I did.
 
  • #60
quantumdude
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Drag, you obviously aren't even trying to put any thought into this.

Originally posted by drag
Let me try this:
"I assume that everything is in my mind.

I see that I am able to reason with what I see.

If I am able to reason with what I see then clearly
I know the rules and laws in some basic form or else
why should I be making any sense of it all.

If I have this fundumental basis then all must be in my mind."

Your argument goes like this:

The statements:
p: Everything is in my mind.
q: I am able to reason based on what I see.
r: I know the rules (of what? of nature?).

The argument:
1. q (Premise)
2. q-->r (Premise)
3. Therefore, p (Conclusion)

The conclusion is just tacked onto the end of the argument! This is a simple non-sequitur.


Case closed.

Pffft.

(NOTE: In NO WAY, is the above really considered by myself to
make any real sense. But, it sure sounds better than Tom's
argument, doesn't it ? )

Of course not. My argument is at least deductively valid. Of course, sincere people can disagree with my premises, but to compare the garbage you have written above with the logic of my argument is simply insulting.

Drag, I stepped into this thread because Iacchus was taking it off course, and I thought the topic was worth discussing seriously. Now, here you are doing the same thing. Do us all a favor and either get serious, or go clown around somewhere else.
 
Last edited:
  • #61
drag
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Greetings !
Originally posted by Tom
I mean that the phenomena I observe can be predicted accurately using the laws of nature as codified by science.
But they are not predicted with perfect accuracy
nor do you know all the laws. What is the limmit
between order and lack of it then ?
Originally posted by Tom
One does it by mentally reviewing one’s knowledge.
Can you prove "free will" ?
Can you make a reasonable argument using some sort
of reason in a consistent manner that will prove this ?
Originally posted by Tom
So what? These are the most basic assumptions a person can make.
Indeed they are ASSUMPTIONS.
I can accept them to some extent hence.
Originally posted by Tom
What’s more, you know that these things are
true of yourself.
They appear to be.
Originally posted by Tom
Yes, that’s right. There is no such thing as proving things in reality absolutely. Assumptions always have to be made.
Indeed, except existence itself.
Originally posted by Tom
The best anyone can do is assume the premises that are more reasonable than their negations. I assume the negation of the premise, “the laws of nature are stored in my mind”, because when I consider all that I know, those laws are not there. I have to learn them by taking physics classes!
That is precisely what I have a problem with. We can
leave the whole arbitrary basic reasonings and exact
definitions aside. However, I do not see any sense whatsoever
in that assumption. In fact, if it did appear to be so -
that I should have the laws as part of the mind, then it
would make no sense for only the mind to exist because the
laws of the laws would not make sense. However, if they
are not "in my mind" then it does make sense, to me.

Further more, although it's BS, I can even say I have the
Anthropic Principle on my side. The same way that it is used
to explain us in the Universe - I do not claim to be special
because if I weren't here then I couldn't think it, it can be
used to explain the mind part here - I am not at all special
so I should not assume that I could make such apparently great
sense of all that I see the way I do unless it was all
fundeumentally me - my own thought.

Again, no argument is true or absolute, but to me at least,
mine sounds a lot better. (We could make a poll. :wink:)
Originally posted by Tom
Both are unprovable, but that does not mean that solipsism is as plausible as materialism. For instance, to accept solipsism I have to accept that I have an innate knowledge of the workings of the universe, because solipsism says that the universe is a creation of my mind. But the fact is that I do not have such knowledge. My “innate understanding” of the workings of the universe pretty much conforms to Newtonian mechanics, because that is an accurate description of everyday experience. Since my “common-sensical” understanding of how the universe works is shaped by everyday experience, and that understanding is fundamentally flawed, that suggests to me that it was shaped by input from an external universe, rather than coming from within.
My argument sounds better. :wink:
Originally posted by Tom
If the premises are reasonably well established, and the logic is valid, then you have reason to accept an argument. Is that not obvious?
That is precisely the issue here. We are not dealing with
a precise abstract system like math here. There is no absolute
or defined or even apparently a limmited amount of ways to
reason. There are certain ways to reason that do seem
to bring more results for now. In this particular case, my
way just seems a lot better to me, apsecialy in light of the
important problem in your argument that I previously mentioned.
Originally posted by Tom
Drag, I am not going to run around in circles with you over this. Deductive validity is not a matter of opinion. It is just as certain as 2+2=4. Either you accept the propositional calculus, or you do not.
Deductive validity depends upon the method of deduction.
In the abstract system of algebra there is only one
method to make deductions. But, I see no limmits at all
imposed in philosophy, do you ? :wink:
Originally posted by Tom
q: My mind must have innate knowledge of the workings of that universe.
Could you, at least, present some deeper analisys of why
you think that's a simple deduction and what does it
mean to have innate knowledge, because I can alternativly
argue that we already do, because we can make pretty good
sense of things. My argument, for example, sounds a lot more
natural (to me).
Originally posted by Tom
As I said, I am working via reductio ad absurdum. Surely you have done indirect proofs in your math courses?
I've not participated in any such courses yet. I'm about to,
very soon. Again, I do not see how mathematical logic is
relevenat here. Your input/output/proccessing is not even in
the form of numbers or any other mathematical form - I mean
the content not the streuctural form of the argument. Further
more, you use abstract assumptions and make connections between
them according to a particular and seemingly unjustified
and subjective (=not-popular) line of reasoning that you've
selected(that has nothing to do with mathematics, btw).

Doubt or shout !

Live long and prosper.
 
  • #62
Iacchus32
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Originally posted by Tom
Drag, I stepped into this thread because Iacchus was taking it off course, and I thought the topic was worth discussing seriously. Now, here you are doing the same thing. Do us all a favor and either get serious, or go clown around somewhere else.
Or perhaps drag was under the same impression as me about Kerrie's original premise for posting this thread? In which case you have no grounds for saying this.

I don't think she was looking for grounds to dismiss the "Mind Hypothesis" outright -- which, it seems you're trying to do -- but rather discuss it.

Oh, and by the way, ever get the impression that people don't think you take them seriously?
 
  • #63
quantumdude
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Tom: I mean that the phenomena I observe can be predicted accurately using the laws of nature as codified by science.

drag: But they are not predicted with perfect accuracy nor do you know all the laws. What is the limmit
between order and lack of it then ?


It does not matter that they are not perfect. What does matter is that the evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of the proposition that the universe behaves according to immutable laws, to which the known laws of physics are a good approximation. As for the limit between order and lack of it, I don’t have a precise formulation of it (yet), but our ability to predict the results of experiments accurately and consistently is undeniable. I assume the proposition that the universe is orderly and predictable because it is more plausible than the negation.


Tom: One does it by mentally reviewing one’s knowledge.

drag: Can you prove "free will" ? Can you make a reasonable argument using some sort
of reason in a consistent manner that will prove this ?


I do not need to prove free will. Whether I decide to perform the above act or it is predetermined is irrelevant: I still know that it is happening.


Tom: So what? These are the most basic assumptions a person can make.

drag: Indeed they are ASSUMPTIONS. I can accept them to some extent hence.


You are stressing this to the point of being obnoxious. I know they are assumptions. One cannot proceed in an argument about reality without making some assumptions.


Tom: The best anyone can do is assume the premises that are more reasonable than their negations. I assume the negation of the premise, “the laws of nature are stored in my mind”, because when I consider all that I know, those laws are not there. I have to learn them by taking physics classes!

drag: That is precisely what I have a problem with. We can
leave the whole arbitrary basic reasonings and exact
definitions aside. However, I do not see any sense whatsoever
in that assumption. In fact, if it did appear to be so -
that I should have the laws as part of the mind, then it
would make no sense for only the mind to exist because the
laws of the laws would not make sense. However, if they
are not "in my mind" then it does make sense, to me.


I don’t follow. I am saying that the laws of nature are not innately known to my mind. You say you have a problem with my assumption, but then you go on to agree with it.


Further more, although it's BS, I can even say I have the
Anthropic Principle on my side.


If it’s BS, then why bring it up?


Again, no argument is true or absolute, but to me at least,
mine sounds a lot better. (We could make a poll. :wink:)

My argument sounds better. :wink:


I honestly do not see any logical argument from you here, and I also do not see where you disagree with my basic assumptions.


Tom: If the premises are reasonably well established, and the logic is valid, then you have reason to accept an argument. Is that not obvious?

drag: That is precisely the issue here. We are not dealing with a precise abstract system like math here. There is no absolute or defined or even apparently a limmited amount of ways to reason. There are certain ways to reason that do seem to bring more results for now. In this particular case, my way just seems a lot better to me, apsecialy in light of the important problem in your argument that I previously mentioned.


I don’t know what you’re talking about here. First, it is certainly the case that we are dealing with a formal abstract system in my first argument, because I am using propositional logic in that argument. Secondly, I do not see any problem with my argument that you have pointed out (at least not with the logic of it). And third, I don’t see a clear counterargument from you.


drag: Deductive validity depends upon the method of deduction.
In the abstract system of algebra there is only one
method to make deductions. But, I see no limmits at all
imposed in philosophy, do you ?:wink:


Of course I do. I cast my argument in the form of truth-functional propositions. Thus, I use the propositional calculus. No problem there.


Tom: q: My mind must have innate knowledge of the workings of that universe.

drag: Could you, at least, present some deeper analisys of why
you think that's a simple deduction and what does it
mean to have innate knowledge, because I can alternativly
argue that we already do, because we can make pretty good
sense of things. My argument, for example, sounds a lot more
natural (to me).


I am totally lost. First, what you quoted me on above is not a deduction, it is a premise. Second, “to have innate knowledge” means “to know without being taught” (use your dictionary, drag).


I've not participated in any such courses yet. I'm about to,
very soon. Again, I do not see how mathematical logic is
relevenat here.


It is relevant because I am seeking to present a deductive argument.


Your input/output/proccessing is not even in
the form of numbers or any other mathematical form


Actually, it is my understanding that the human brain can indeed be modeled as a formal logical system. It works like a sophisticated computer, which can definitely be so modeled.


I mean the content not the streuctural form of the argument. Further
more, you use abstract assumptions and make connections between
them according to a particular and seemingly unjustified
and subjective (=not-popular) line of reasoning that you've
selected(that has nothing to do with mathematics, btw).


Huh?

Which of my assumptions is “abstract”? What “subjective line of reasoning” did I use? Why is it “non-popular”? Why should I even care if it is “non-popular”?

You’re not making any sense here, drag. Why don’t you just take a day or to two to review what I have written so far? You clearly aren’t grasping the logic or the terms I am using, and I really do not want to have to explain the propositional calculus or what “innate” means. I am hoping to move beyond the ABC’s, and into what Another God referred to.

edit: fixed several brackets
 
  • #64
drag
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Greetings Tom !
Originally posted by Tom
Drag, you obviously aren't even trying to put any thought into this.
Thanks ! :smile:
It would not be very smart of me to mess around with
baseless philosophical ideas too much. That's why I ussualy
do not and I occasionaly try to help others by curing them
of this mind-blowing and mostly useless way of spending their
time online. :wink:
Originally posted by Tom
Your argument goes like this:
The statements:
p: Everything is in my mind.
q: I am able to reason based on what I see.
r: I know the rules (of what? of nature?).

The argument:
1. q (Premise)
2. q-->r (Premise)
3. Therefore, p (Conclusion)
Nope. My argument goes like this:

q: I am able to reason with what I see.
r: I have the rule built in because I am able to reason.

The argument itself :
p,q --> r --> p

You argument goes like this :

q: I can not see the rules in my mind (ridiculous btw, because
once you assume the mind is all in p and then you use the
mind to just mean your thoughts and ignore the "material"
parts of it all, as you might call it, then you're ignoring
the Universe itself the laws of which are developing in
your mind - according to p.).

The argument itself :

p --> q --> not p
Originally posted by Tom
The conclusion is just tacked onto the end of the argument! This is a simple non-sequitur.
And I suppose yours makes perfect sense.
DO YOU REALLY ACTUALY SEE IT THAY WAY ?!
Originally posted by Tom
Of course not. My argument is at least deductively valid. Of course, sincere people can disagree with my premises, but to compare the garbage you have written above with the logic of my argument is simply insulting.
It is self-insulting that you actually think there is an easily
apparent deductive reasoning that makes your argument deductivly
valid.
Originally posted by Tom
Drag, I stepped into this thread because Iacchus was taking it off course, and I thought the topic was worth discussing seriously. Now, here you are doing the same thing. Do us all a favor and either get serious, or go clown around somewhere else.
I'm not forcing you or anyone else to participate in this
forum. I would however expect you to show basic respect,
because if I wanted to treat your posts here like those of
a clown - believe me I'd raize waves of laughter.

Peace and long life.
 
  • #65
quantumdude
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Originally posted by Iacchus32
I don't think she was looking for grounds to dismiss the "Mind Hypothesis" outright -- which, it seems you're trying to do -- but rather discuss it.

I agree, I don't think she was trying to do away with The Mind (objective idealism). In my initial post to Kerrie, I did not get into that. I only tried to get out of solipsism (subjective idealism). In fact, none of my arguments presented thus far really contradicts The Mind.

Oh, and by the way, ever get the impression that people don't think you take them seriously?

It's no big secret that I do not take irrationality seriously.
 
  • #66
quantumdude
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Originally posted by drag
Nope. My argument goes like this:

q: I am able to reason with what I see.
r: I have the rule built in because I am able to reason.

The argument itself :
p,q --> r --> p

This is even worse! You have:

1. p (Premise)
2. q-->r (Premise)
3. Therefore p (Conclusion)

The conclusion is the same as premise 1. That is a circular argument, and can be used to "prove" anything.

You argument goes like this :

q: I can not see the rules in my mind (ridiculous btw, because
once you assume the mind is all in p and then you use the
mind to just mean your thoughts and ignore the "material"
parts of it all, as you might call it, then you're ignoring
the Universe itself the laws of which are developing in
your mind - according to p.).

The argument itself :

p --> q --> not p

And I suppose yours makes perfect sense.
DO YOU REALLY ACTUALY SEE IT THAY WAY ?!

More clowning around on your part.

No, drag, I clearly set forth the structure of my argument earlier. Read it.

It is self-insulting that you actually think there is an easily
apparent deductive reasoning that makes your argument deductivly
valid.

Get a clue, drag. The schema I posted is the schema of my argument, and it is valid. Here it is again:

1. p (Premise)
2. p-->q (Premise)
3. ~q (Premise)
4. Therefore, ~p (Conclusion)

I'm not forcing you or anyone else to participate in this
forum. I would however expect you to show basic respect,
because if I wanted to treat your posts here like those of
a clown - believe me I'd raize waves of laughter.

Drag, it is not me, but you who is failing to show respect. You have been misrepresenting my posts from the start. Stop it.
 
  • #67
Iacchus32
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Originally posted by Tom
I agree, I don't think she was trying to do away with The Mind (objective idealism). In my initial post to Kerrie, I did not get into that. I only tried to get out of solipsism (subjective idealism). In fact, none of my arguments presented thus far really contradicts The Mind.
Thank you.


It's no big secret that I do not take irrationality seriously.
But how do you define what is irrational? Wouldn't you agree that it's irrational to say the world is flat? And yet wasn't it considered "rational" until we discovered otherwise? There are a lot of things which may seem irrational, but are so only because we don't fully comprehend what it entails. Does that mean we should dismiss it then, as inconsequential? Or, would it be better to leave it as an open question, and not let it be influenced by our bias?

Hey I'm like this too, that unless I understand something, I don't commit it to my memory. And, although it may seem like I have a tendency to dismiss things (who me?), I tend to stick more with what I "know," but rarely does it involve deliberately offending someone else. Or, at least I try anyway.
 
  • #68
drag
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Greetings Tom !
Originally posted by Tom
It does not matter that they are not perfect. What does matter is that the evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of the proposition that the universe behaves according to immutable laws, to which the known laws of physics are a good approximation. As for the limit between order and lack of it, I don’t have a precise formulation of it (yet), but our ability to predict the results of experiments accurately and consistently is undeniable. I assume the proposition that the universe is orderly and predictable because it is more plausible than the negation.
And yet, without some way of quantifying the whole
thing you can not even prove the likeliness of the whole
thing using any direct basis for your argument, can you ?

But, let's leave it at that, because actualy I do agree
with you on this. That does not mean that I see any real
reason for me to assume this order, for now.
Originally posted by Tom
I do not need to prove free will. Whether I decide to perform the above act or it is predetermined is irrelevant: I still know that it is happening.
My point is that if you, supposedly, are not in control
of the whole proccess then it's result is even more
doubtful. But, let's leave this issue too because it
ain't leading anywhere here.
Originally posted by Tom
You are stressing this to the point of being obnoxious. I know they are assumptions. One cannot proceed in an argument about reality without making some assumptions.
I am sorry. I was just making sure that the problem
that I enitially thought existed in your arguments
is indeed not a problem but rather my assumption from
the way you phrased your arguments. Nevertheless, I think
that it is important to emphasize these things even if by
just adding words like probably/seemingly/apparently in order
to avoid misunderstandings and misguide others.
Originally posted by Tom
I don’t follow. I am saying that the laws of nature are not innately known to my mind. You say you have a problem with my assumption, but then you go on to agree with it.
I was just exploring your argument in order to show
that it can become absurd rather easily, hence purhaps
it's not that good an argument.

That is, according to your argument if we should see these
innate laws then the mind assumption is correct. However, if
we see the laws then they too will need laws. (Your
argument is that things are apparently orderly and have laws
and even at such a basic reasoning level you already get causality -
you say there must be laws, something I, btw, avoid in my argument
because I only speak of the ability to reason rather than dealing
with laws directly.) If the laws will need laws then we appear
to get an infinite series of laws and hence, correct me if
I'm wrong, a fundumental inability of your argument of actually
prove (p) rather than (not p).
Originally posted by Tom
If it’s BS, then why bring it up?
Because it sounds better than your argument, no offense.
Originally posted by Tom
I honestly do not see any logical argument from you here, and I also do not see where you disagree with my basic assumptions.
It's not a matter of disagreement. It's a matter of
a totally different line of reasoning, that btw looks
more successful and unlike yours, apparently, capable of
proving (p) or not(p) and not just one of them. Further more,
of course, my argument arrives at the opposite conclusion.
Originally posted by Tom
I don’t know what you’re talking about here. First, it is certainly the case that we are dealing with a formal abstract system in my first argument, because I am using propositional logic in that argument. Secondly, I do not see any problem with my argument that you have pointed out (at least not with the logic of it). And third, I don’t see a clear counterargument from you.
Your argument is no more correct/inccorrect according
to propositional logic than mine is as I've tried to show
in my post above this one. But, that is just a matter of structure.

As for content - something you must have because eventually
you have to use an assumption about reality and thus you can, seemingly, never deal solely with structure in non-abstract
systems, well, the content of your argument does seem to
have a much more serious problem, as I've just explained.

Also, there is no counterargument from me because I do
not see a real need for one. Instead, I'm offering an
alternative argument and a seemingly pretty good one.
(Though if I had to make a descision I would still
personally prefer your conclusion, though doubtedly
as a result of your argument. I just don't like that mind stuff. Not that it really makes a difference, I guess...:wink:)
Originally posted by Tom
Of course I do. I cast my argument in the form of truth-functional propositions. Thus, I use the propositional calculus. No problem there.
I do not see any even remotely likely truth in the
"innate observable/or not laws in the mind" part.
In fact, I even showed you why it seemingly ruins the
whole argument.
Originally posted by Tom
I am totally lost. First, what you quoted me on above is not a deduction, it is a premise. Second, “to have innate knowledge” means “to know without being taught” (use your dictionary, drag).
What ? Oh well, I kin'na assumed you used it as a deduction
from the original mind assumption. If it's a separate premise
then I shouldn't've wrote it first in the argument line.
You can drop it from my argument's start, as well.

But, the reasoning that leads you to this premise is still
relevant. The dictionary is not at all what I meant. What
I meant was - why did you assume that we should "know" the laws
and what precisely does that mean - know them in temrs
of mathematical reasoning ? How about other potential reasoning ?

You see, my argument is general and adresses the
general ability to reason on the most basic level.
And even then - I conclude that it is a special thing.

You, on the other hand, assume that we should know all
the laws precisely (btw, in which reasoning form ?) in order
to justify the mind idea. And I simply do not see why you
want such strong(or even absolute ?)evidence before you start
supporting this (it's only supposed to be likely) idea.
Originally posted by Tom
It is relevant because I am seeking to present a deductive argument.
So ? I use the same structural form (with one more
component). That doesn't mean the content makes sense.
Originally posted by Tom
Which of my assumptions is “abstract”?
Well, to be thorough - all. Just like mine. As long
as you want to use your propositional logic on them
thus assigning truth values to them they can not
be attributed directly to reality.
Originally posted by Tom
What “subjective line of reasoning” did I use?
You assumed that for the Universe to be in our mind
we must know it's laws. Whether that is a deduction or
an assumption = premise I do not see why it should at
all be relevant. Purhaps if you answered my question
and ellaborated upon your relevant chain of thought here
rather than making pointless remarks about the dictionary
then purhaps I would understand why you thought this
"knowledge of the laws" is indeed a term that has anything
to do with the mind idea.
Originally posted by Tom
Why is it “non-popular”?
I said "subjective (=non-popular)" because eventually
objective and subjective are just matters of popularity -
what the majority considers objective is objective and
the opposite (nothing's certain, after all).

In this case, I feel that your term is a subjective term
because most people would not require such a term to be
sattisfied in order for the mind idea to be proven to them.
Aspecialy since I've explained why it is a problematic
term that can never actually be true.
Originally posted by Tom
Why should I even care if it is “non-popular”?
You shouldn't. You should stick to the thoughts that
seem most clear and best to you. But, the popularity
of such thoughts amongst the relevant people could
be a worthy indication of their worth. :wink:
Originally posted by Tom
You’re not making any sense here, drag. ...,
and into what Another God referred to.
Oh ? I thought I was making perfect sense. I also
think I understood all that you said to me. I do
find some of your propositional logic stuff quite
annoying though. In a few previous disccussions in the past
you seemed inclined to do the same thing once it appeared
that your arguments were being pushed too much, that is -
say you do not understand and start a totally irrelevant
propositional logic "attack". Purhaps, this is your favourite
way of understanding things, I don't know. However, unfortunetly
philosophy is one of the few fields where propositional logic
is apparently not very important, though it has its uses here too.
So, it is unfortunate that instead of really trying to
understand what you are being told you try to draw
logical diagrams and confuse yourself with such basicly
simple debates that just require a little bit of open-mindedness.

As AG's posts, I did not read them. I'll try to do so though.
Thanks.

Doubt or shout !

Peace and long life.
 
  • #69
quantumdude
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
5,575
23
Drag, this was the post I was hoping you would make.

That is, according to your argument if we should see these
innate laws then the mind assumption is correct. However, if
we see the laws then they too will need laws. (Your
argument is that things are apparently orderly and have laws
and even at such a basic reasoning level you already get causality -
you say there must be laws, something I, btw, avoid in my argument
because I only speak of the ability to reason rather than dealing
with laws directly.) If the laws will need laws then we appear
to get an infinite series of laws and hence, correct me if
I'm wrong, a fundumental inability of your argument of actually
prove (p) rather than (not p).

I don’t think the argument has that problem. All I am saying is that this universe that I am looking at exhibits patterns in the behavior that I observe. To each discernable pattern, I attribute a law. There is no need for the laws to have laws here.

It's not a matter of disagreement. It's a matter of
a totally different line of reasoning, that btw looks
more successful and unlike yours, apparently, capable of
proving (p) or not(p) and not just one of them. Further more,
of course, my argument arrives at the opposite conclusion.

As I noted in my last post, your argument is constructed circularly. It can be used to arrive at any conclusion you like. Here is the schema again:

1. p (Premise)
2. q-->r (Premise)
3. Therefore p (Conclusion)

You could just as easily substitute ~p for Premise 1 and for the Conclusion (or either of them seperately).

Your argument is no more correct/inccorrect according
to propositional logic than mine is as I've tried to show
in my post above this one. But, that is just a matter of structure.

This reflects your fundamental misunderstanding of propositional logic.

Propositional logic is only concerned with matters of structure, not with content. Your argument—-as you have written it—-fails the test for soundness because it is circular.

I do not see any even remotely likely truth in the
"innate observable/or not laws in the mind" part.
In fact, I even showed you why it seemingly ruins the
whole argument.

OK, this is what I was hoping to get into. If you recall, I identified it as a weakness of the argument and invited people to explore it. I am working on a post to address this.

Tom: It is relevant because I am seeking to present a deductive argument.

Drag: So ? I use the same structural form (with one more
component). That doesn't mean the content makes sense.

No, you don’t use the same structural form. Hopefully you can see that after reading my last post.

You assumed that for the Universe to be in our mind
we must know it's laws. Whether that is a deduction or
an assumption = premise I do not see why it should at
all be relevant.

It is relevant because words mean things. When you say, “deduction” (which is a process of going from one statement to another) and present only one statement, it just confuses me.

I do find some of your propositional logic stuff quite
annoying though. In a few previous disccussions in the past
you seemed inclined to do the same thing once it appeared
that your arguments were being pushed too much, that is -
say you do not understand and start a totally irrelevant
propositional logic "attack".

This also stems from your misunderstanding of propositional logic.

Drag, you are the one who brought up propositional logic here, not me. You are the one who made my formal reasoning an issue. You said that it was self-referential and you challenged its deductive validity. If discussions of formal logic annoy you, then don’t get into them. When you challenge my formal reasoning, I show you why I think my formal reasoning is correct. What annoys me is when someone makes a challenge to my posts and then moans about it when I answer the challenge.

Purhaps, this is your favourite
way of understanding things, I don't know. However, unfortunetly
philosophy is one of the few fields where propositional logic
is apparently not very important, though it has its uses here too.

Now, you are misunderstanding the place of formal logic in philosophy, because it’s everywhere in the field.

You could really benefit from reading the following article, and then going through a couple of books on logic and epistemology.
[url=[PLAIN]http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/logical-form[/URL] [Broken]

Formal logic is the backbone of philosophy, and one should not be criticized for bringing it into a philosophical discussion. That is like criticizing someone for bringing mathematics into the Theoretical Physics forum and saying, “That’s annoying. You’re just doing that because you don’t know how to answer me, and you want to brush me off by telling me I don’t understand.” Nothing could be further from the truth. In my opinion, logic facilitates understanding.

So, it is unfortunate that instead of really trying to
understand what you are being told you try to draw
logical diagrams and confuse yourself with such basicly
simple debates that just require a little bit of open-mindedness.

You have got it so backwards here.

First, I am trying to understand what I am being told, and I am doing a good job of it. Your most scathing criticisms of me in this thread have been about my formal reasoning. As I said, when you say that my argument is self-referential or not deductively valid, you are challenging me to show you its structure and why it is in fact valid (or to fix it if it is not).

Second, my use of logic does not confuse me. To the contrary, it makes things crystal clear! The problem here is that you are making challenges to parts of my argument without really understanding what you are talking about. That is so painfully obvious, I don’t know how to make it any clearer to you, but you did prove it in spades by getting the schema of my argument totally wrong when you tried to post it. Also, the argument you posted that you claim has the same structure as mine clearly does not.

Third, I am quite open minded. I can see the strengths and weaknesses in different perspectives, and I do not mind being proven wrong, because that’s how I learn. I even presented a what I thought the weak point of my argument is, earlier today:

Originally posted by Tom
The point that is most vulnerable to redress is my premise from the first argument:

If my mind is the source of the universe, then those laws should be in my mind somehow.

If you want to go into that further, then we can, but please no more of this nonsense about how my argument is “self-referential”. At least learn what the term means before you throw it at me.

As I made crystal clear above, I was trying to steer the discussion away from the formal reasoning and towards the content of the argument, but you wouldn’t let it go. And now, ironically, here you are clamoring for us to stop talking about form and start talking about content!

Well, it took all day, but now we can finally get to it.

edit: bracket
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • #70
M. Gaspar
679
1
Originally posted by Tom
It does not matter that they are not perfect. What does matter is that the evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of the proposition that the universe behaves according to immutable laws, to which the known laws of physics are a good approximation. As for the limit between order and lack of it, I don’t have a precise formulation of it (yet), but our ability to predict the results of experiments accurately and consistently is undeniable. I assume the proposition that the universe is orderly and predictable because it is more plausible than the negation.

Can one predict with any degree of accuracy, say, the future evolutionary track of a given species? Or, had we been there to observe in the distant past, would we -- or the brightest among us -- have been able to "predict" that dinosaurs would fly or that shrew-like creatures would someday have the wherewithal to build flying machines?

Without seque...and by mixing metaphors...I offer the following inquiry:

What if the Universe were like a "sea of potentialities" where "intention" IMPINGES on the "lynchpin" of "randomness" causing certain things to manifest while others do not?

Could INTENTION be intrinsic to a system where both randomness and potentialities "reside"? Or would a "force" like "intention" be as EXTRANEOUS to the equation as "God"?

Also, I've heard that mere OBSERVATION changes results in certain experiments. What's up with this?

Please offer your thoughts on this...before "they" come back for me. Thanks.
 

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