If abductively necessary, then reasonable

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If abductively necessary, then reasonable

In this thread, I want to establish that IF Christianity is an abductive necessity, THEN Christianity is reasonable. I want to get this premise through by itself before I go show exactly why it is abductively necessary. I have seen that I really have to take it One. Step. At. A. Time. with you people.

I want to begin by establishing what I mean by limited. By that, A cognitive faculty is limited if it is such that it may apply every test within its power to some proposition "x" and come to believe "x", while "not x" is the case. In other words, it is possible for some idea to be 100% reasonable, yet false. Here's an example: A very very young child might see a straw inserted into a glass of water, note that the straw appears to bend, and conclude that straws bend when inserted into water. Within the young child's context of knowledge, this is reasonable, and even the most strenuous logical analyses could not change that. But it's false!

That's what I take "limited" to mean. Now we're going to see how limited we are, i.e., in what specific realms the human faculty of cognition is limited. There are two sorts of propositions: empirical and a priori. Empirical propositions, i.e. propositions that take their persuasive power from sensory data, are all potentially flawed. Your eyes, your ears, your hands; all of these are bits of matter sending you bits of electricity. They can misfire. A source of information that may misfire cannot provide you with certainty. So you are limited to the realm of the a priori, right? But wait! A priori propositions are no surer. Your mind can lapse just like your senses. If you have ever made a mistake on a math problem, you have come to a false a priori conclusion. So the mind, just like your senses, may be wrong. And a source of information that may be wrong cannot provide you with certainty. Since all propositions are either empirical or a priori, and you are limited both in the a priori and empirical realms, you are totally limited. All of your beliefs, from "A is A" to "Obama's economic policy rules" are produced by a limited faculty of cognition.

Since the human faculty of cognition is totally limited, it must employ the following two concepts to survive in reality: (1) induction and (2) abductive necessity. Induction permits us to move from past statesof affairs to future states of affairs via inductive propositions, and abductive necessity permits us to unify inductive propositions into abductive propositions, or explanations. When we discovered that water boiled at a certain temperature, it was an inductive discovery, since it was based upon repeated, direct observations of the boiling of the water. When we discovered that atoms have positively charged nuclei, it was an abductive necessity, since we did not directly observe the nucleus but had to declare its existence to explain why Rutherford's electrons were riocheting off the gold foil at such odd angles -- nothing else made sense of all the data. (I'm going to assume you all know the gold foil experiment.) Neither of these are really philosophically satisfying methods of gathering information about the world. A proposition that is inductively reasonable or abductively necessary may be false. They are simply how we as beings of limited means gather information about the world.

(Side note: Somebody is going to link to todangst's induction paper at this point. Before you do that, think for a second: at the end of the day, behind the equations and the rhetoric and the terminology, Did he show that the next swan must be white? No. So the problem of induction remains a problem. Don't waste my time.)

Saying that a proposition is abductively necessary means, roughly, that it's the best explanation we've got. It unifies all the data. If the Christian religion is an abductive necessity, the Christian religion is reasonable, since that is all that is necessary to establish a proposition for a limited intelligence.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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ummm you still haven't shown

ummm you still haven't shown how the christian religion is an abductive necessity.....a entails b....maybe I am missing something here, but you haven't proven that a entails christianity, simply but you haven't said anything to prove it at all. I can say everything you said and just change christian religions to atheism. You haven't proven that A entails B here at all. As well we can use deduction to show that b does not or does entail a. Yet something else you haven't done.

If we take the core teachings of christianity, the bible is the inerrant word of god and infalliable it entails that everything in there is correct and truthful, however if we find a problem within the bible or something that is not true, then it no longer is inerrant word of god and infalliable. Lev. 11-6 about hare chewing the cud....they don't chew the cud, and they do divide at the "hoof". Matt 13:31-32: " "the kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed which…is the least of all seeds, but when it is grown is the greatest among herbs and becometh a tree." here is another problem, the mustard seed isn't the smallest seed, orchids are smallers, and it doesn't grow into a tree.....of course you can explain this way by saying that your version of christianity doesn't hold the bible as infalliable or inerrant word of god. But this is one way of showing you that christianity can be proven wrong with abductive reasoning. So do please show me with abduction how christianity is a logical outcome?


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You haven't yet extended any

You haven't yet extended any of your discussion to asserting anything about Christianity, as far as I can see. I presume this is yet to come.

"Abductive necessity" is a very flimsy basis for anything, IOW, "I can't think of any other explanation. so this is the best availbale". Even if true, it may be a very weak indication of the worth of the proposed 'explanation'. if the 'explanation' has little or no positive evidence for it, and assumes the existence of entities of some non-trivial complexity or not-otherwise-observed attributes, the more honest position is "We Don't Know", or we have insufficient data to make any useful hypotheses at this time. I really think attaching 'necessity' to abductive 'conclusions' is a very questionable concept.

Rutherford's experiment, which BTW involved positively charged alpha-particles - electrons, being negatively-charged, would not have bounced off the positively-charged nucleii in the foil - did not point to anything of a fundamentally different nature than the alpha-particles themselves, just that the substance of the atoms in the foil appeared to be highly concentrated, since most particles went straight thru, but a small percentage bounced off at sharp angles suggesting they had hit something much heavier than themselves.

This conclusion was thus a very simple and reasonable 'abduction' from the observations.

Whereas with God 'explanations', all you are doing here is attempting to conceal the basic "God-of-the-Gaps" under some distracting jargon.

It may very well be a reasonable and rational belief for an individual who is not aware of all the logical and scientific difficulties with the Christian God hypothesis, and the body of debate on the topic, and has had the concept presented by people perceived to be in a position of authority. But to cling rigidly to it once being made aware of the extent of the difficulties with it which have been argued by so many competent people, AND the plausibility of alternative explanations, should probably not be considered very rational.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

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BTW, if you still insist

BTW, if you still insist there is a 'problem' with induction, it pales beside the problem of abduction, which skates directly on the edge of a logical fallacy, namely 'affirming the consequent', or 'Post hoc ergo propter hoc', whereas the induction 'problem' is mainly a 'problem' of trying to apply binary (true-false) logic to a process which propely involves assessing likelihoods, probabilities.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

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I'd like to suggest that

I'd like to suggest that induction is consistently applicable to certain areas of knowledge. The black swan problem is one of misunderstanding of the application of induction. In chemistry and physics, induction is not only useful, it is completely logical as a tool. If in a consistently and properly mixed gas, two hydrogen atoms bond with an oxygen atom in an exothermic reaction, we can inductively assume that, in the future, that same mix of gas under the same conditions will result in an exothermic reaction involving two hydrogen atoms bonding with an oxygen atom. If two objects possessing mass are placed in close proximity to each other and they attract, we can assume that two similarly-massed objects will attract each other if similarly placed in close proximity.

In any case, the assumption that induction is equally flawed in all applications is incorrect.

Further, the use of abduction is limited to situations in which the abductive conclusion may be tested deductively. If the abductive conclusion deductively necessitates a certain conclusion, and that conclusion is empirically supported, the original conclusion is supported. Without the deductively-derived supporting evidence, an abductive conclusion is merely a SWAG -- a scientific wild-assed guess.

Presuppositionalist wrote:

Neither of these are really philosophically satisfying methods of gathering information about the world.

Philosophy is useful only inasmuch as it facilitates understanding and knowledge. As the scientific method is the only known practically-applicable epistemology available, the proper application of induction, abduction, and deduction is both philosophically-satisfying, and intellectually gratifying.

"Yes, I seriously believe that consciousness is a product of a natural process. I find that the neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers who proceed from that premise are the ones who are actually making useful contributions to our understanding of the mind." - PZ Myers


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It's sad when Wiki can solve

It's sad when Wiki can solve a problem so easily, but here goes:

Wikipedia wrote:
As such abduction is formally equivalent to the logical fallacy affirming the consequent or Post hoc ergo propter hoc, because there are multiple possible explanations for b.

 

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Meh... I tried to answer

Meh... I tried to answer simply, and I just couldn't.

Look, Occam's Razor is a form of abductive reasoning.  When we have a set of possible explanations for a phenomenon, Occam's Razor tells us that the simplest parsimonious explanation is probably the correct one.  In day to day life, this usually works really well.  When you go to buy a car, you take a lot of information as true even though you don't know it with scientific accuracy.  Abductive reasoning is very useful.

Even in science, it's damn useful.  When scientists are trying to solve a problem, they often use abductive reasoning to decide where to look first.  Given ten possible explanations, they will often focus on the most parsimonious and simple explanation first.  If experimentation proves that to be true, then so much the better.

The thing is, abduction cannot prove anything.  It can only suggest likely explanations.  As in your example of a straw in a glass of water, abduction might very well inform a child that the straw is bending.  The thing is, deduction and induction prove that conclusion wrong, and they both carry the weight of logical validity, where abduction most definitely does not.

 

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Presuppositionalist wrote:

Presuppositionalist wrote:
Induction permits us to move from past statesof affairs to future states of affairs via inductive propositions, and abductive necessity permits us to unify inductive propositions into abductive propositions, or explanations. When we discovered that water boiled at a certain temperature, it was an inductive discovery, since it was based upon repeated, direct observations of the boiling of the water. When we discovered that atoms have positively charged nuclei, it was an abductive necessity, since we did not directly observe the nucleus but had to declare its existence to explain why Rutherford's electrons [alpha particles]were ricocheting off the gold foil at such odd angles -- nothing else made sense of all the data. (I'm going to assume you all know the gold foil experiment.)

Rutherford's experiment alone was not enough to convince scientists that atoms had positively charged nuclei. This experiment only established the hypotheses that atoms had positively charged nuclei. There were other discoveries and experiments that in combination with this one convinced scientists that atoms had positively charged nuclei. Scientists do not believe something simply because they lack the imagination to invent any other explanation for something. There is a long history of such explanations being wrong. Even if only one explanation is available, scientists do not believe it unless it leads to risky predictions that are fulfilled, or they could explain how it could be falsified if it were false.

when you say "faith" I think "evil lies"
when you say "god" I think "santa clause"


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Presuppositionalist wrote:In

Presuppositionalist wrote:

In this thread, I want to establish that IF Christianity is an abductive necessity, THEN Christianity is reasonable. I want to get this premise through by itself before I go show exactly why it is abductively necessary. I have seen that I really have to take it One. Step. At. A. Time. with you people.

I want to begin by establishing what I mean by limited. By that, A cognitive faculty is limited if it is such that it may apply every test within its power to some proposition "x" and come to believe "x", while "not x" is the case. In other words, it is possible for some idea to be 100% reasonable, yet false. Here's an example: A very very young child might see a straw inserted into a glass of water, note that the straw appears to bend, and conclude that straws bend when inserted into water. Within the young child's context of knowledge, this is reasonable, and even the most strenuous logical analyses could not change that. But it's false!

Error number one: Assuming the child is old enough to engage in reasoning (we're surely not going to build our case for religion on the limited faculties available to embryos), the child would very easily be able to discern that the straw is not, in fact, bent.  All it would take is showing the child the straw isn't bent, or even merely telling the child it isn't.  Children are wired to accept instruction from adults at face value.

Presuppositionalist wrote:

That's what I take "limited" to mean. Now we're going to see how limited we are, i.e., in what specific realms the human faculty of cognition is limited. There are two sorts of propositions: empirical and a priori. Empirical propositions, i.e. propositions that take their persuasive power from sensory data, are all potentially flawed. Your eyes, your ears, your hands; all of these are bits of matter sending you bits of electricity. They can misfire. A source of information that may misfire cannot provide you with certainty. So you are limited to the realm of the a priori, right? But wait! A priori propositions are no surer. Your mind can lapse just like your senses. If you have ever made a mistake on a math problem, you have come to a false a priori conclusion. So the mind, just like your senses, may be wrong.

This is why reason requires us to talk in terms of degrees of certainty. Religion insists that objective reality can be absolutely known, because an all-knowing god revealed absolute truth through any of various books that are all patently, obviously, and redundantly false. This is not a failing of reason, but its greatest strength: the skepticism of even empirical data and the constant, broad-based testing of ideas that forms the foundation of science.

Presuppositionalist wrote:

And a source of information that may be wrong cannot provide you with certainty. Since all propositions are either empirical or a priori, and you are limited both in the a priori and empirical realms, you are totally limited. All of your beliefs, from "A is A" to "Obama's economic policy rules" are produced by a limited faculty of cognition.

Since the human faculty of cognition is totally limited, it must employ the following two concepts to survive in reality: (1) induction and (2) abductive necessity. Induction permits us to move from past statesof affairs to future states of affairs via inductive propositions, and abductive necessity permits us to unify inductive propositions into abductive propositions, or explanations. When we discovered that water boiled at a certain temperature, it was an inductive discovery, since it was based upon repeated, direct observations of the boiling of the water. When we discovered that atoms have positively charged nuclei, it was an abductive necessity, since we did not directly observe the nucleus but had to declare its existence to explain why Rutherford's electrons were riocheting off the gold foil at such odd angles -- nothing else made sense of all the data. (I'm going to assume you all know the gold foil experiment.) Neither of these are really philosophically satisfying methods of gathering information about the world. A proposition that is inductively reasonable or abductively necessary may be false. They are simply how we as beings of limited means gather information about the world.

Why are these two means of forming a network of beliefs insufficient? I find them quite adequate for forming a mental representation of reality. I assume beforehand that at least some of my knowledge is incorrect, especially when I am very confident that I do not fully understand it. For instance, I have NO IDEA how to work out the mathematical models that indicate to Stephen Hawking the universe is expanding at an increasing rate, so it doesn't form a crucial foundation for my mental network.

Presuppositionalist wrote:

(Side note: Somebody is going to link to todangst's induction paper at this point. Before you do that, think for a second: at the end of the day, behind the equations and the rhetoric and the terminology, Did he show that the next swan must be white? No. So the problem of induction remains a problem. Don't waste my time.)

Saying that a proposition is abductively necessary means, roughly, that it's the best explanation we've got. It unifies all the data. If the Christian religion is an abductive necessity, the Christian religion is reasonable, since that is all that is necessary to establish a proposition for a limited intelligence.

You still haven't demonstrated that Christianity is an abductive necessity. However, I'm taking these posts in the order they appeared, so maybe you'll rally in the next one and prove that Christianity, and NO OTHER RELIGION, is of vital importance to our understanding of the universe.

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Presuppositionalist wrote:

Presuppositionalist wrote:
So you are limited to the realm of the a priori, right? But wait! A priori propositions are no surer. Your mind can lapse just like your senses. If you have ever made a mistake on a math problem, you have come to a false a priori conclusion. So the mind, just like your senses, may be wrong. And a source of information that may be wrong cannot provide you with certainty.

 The only a priori knowledge is instincts that are the result of biological evolution such as morality. How can a priori information be used to perform mathematics?

Of course, decisions based solely on instincts are notoriously untrustworthy - that is why we need reason.

The rules of mathematics and logic are derived inductively by observation of the Universe. There is an instinct to try to make sense of the Universe that results in the careful observations that children make that results in their understanding of basic informal mathematics and logic.

Human knowledge is not infallible. All human knowledge is probabilities not certainties. We usually have enough confidence in our knowledge to correctly make the type of decisions that we usually need to make. The only people I know who claim infallibility for their beliefs are insane theists.

Bayes developed Bayes Theorem to solve the problem of induction. He published the solution to the problem of induction  in 1793. The solution proves that certainty is neither possible nor necessary.

 

 

when you say "faith" I think "evil lies"
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latincanuck wrote:ummm you

latincanuck wrote:

ummm you still haven't shown how the christian religion is an abductive necessity.....a entails b....maybe I am missing something here, but you haven't proven that a entails christianity, simply but you haven't said anything to prove it at all. I can say everything you said and just change christian religions to atheism. You haven't proven that A entails B here at all. As well we can use deduction to show that b does not or does entail a. Yet something else you haven't done.

Right. I wasn't arguing that Christianity was actually true. Just that IF it is abductively necessary, it is reasonable. This by itself is a pretty potent premise.

Quote:
If we take the core teachings of christianity, the bible is the inerrant word of god and infalliable it entails that everything in there is correct and truthful, however if we find a problem within the bible or something that is not true, then it no longer is inerrant word of god and infalliable. Lev. 11-6 about hare chewing the cud....they don't chew the cud, and they do divide at the "hoof". Matt 13:31-32: " "the kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed which…is the least of all seeds, but when it is grown is the greatest among herbs and becometh a tree." here is another problem, the mustard seed isn't the smallest seed, orchids are smallers, and it doesn't grow into a tree.....of course you can explain this way by saying that your version of christianity doesn't hold the bible as infalliable or inerrant word of god. But this is one way of showing you that christianity can be proven wrong with abductive reasoning. So do please show me with abduction how christianity is a logical outcome?

I will happily discuss this elsewhere but I want to keep this thread on topic.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Quote:Right. I wasn't

Quote:
Right. I wasn't arguing that Christianity was actually true. Just that IF it is abductively necessary, it is reasonable. This by itself is a pretty potent premise.

Not really.

P: If abductively necessary, Christianity is reasonable.

P: Christianity is not abductively necessary.

C: Therefore: What the fuck are you talking about?

 

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Presuppositionalist

Presuppositionalist wrote:

latincanuck wrote:

ummm you still haven't shown how the christian religion is an abductive necessity.....a entails b....maybe I am missing something here, but you haven't proven that a entails christianity, simply but you haven't said anything to prove it at all. I can say everything you said and just change christian religions to atheism. You haven't proven that A entails B here at all. As well we can use deduction to show that b does not or does entail a. Yet something else you haven't done.

Right. I wasn't arguing that Christianity was actually true. Just that IF it is abductively necessary, it is reasonable. This by itself is a pretty potent premise.

I state again you haven't shown it to be an abductive necessity, or even IF it is an abductively necessary. What you have stated isn't an potent premise, it's just an empty statement, show it now, don't just say IF it is an abductive necessity, it's an empty premise without anything to back up your statement. Change christianity to hinduism ooooh there is an pretty potent premise....doesn't mean squat either but hey it's an potent premise.


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Presuppositionalist

Presuppositionalist wrote:

Saying that a proposition is abductively necessary means, roughly, that it's the best explanation we've got. It unifies all the data.

So evidently, then, it's not the proposition which is necessary but the abduction which is necessary. Christianity is a proposition, it can't gain necessity from the abduction, I think you'll agree. It might contingently gain reasonableness from the necessity for an abductive proposition, but that doesn't make the proposition necessary or reasonable of itself.

I'm inclined to say that your argument has failed to demonstrate that any particular proposition can ever be an "abductive necessity", you've only narrowed it down to "those that address the sum of observations" notwithstanding whether Christianity even satisfies this criteria, it couldn't possibly be alone in doing so.

Presuppositionalist wrote:

 If the Christian religion is an abductive necessity, the Christian religion is reasonable, since that is all that is necessary to establish a proposition for a limited intelligence.

Nope, that's all wrong.

This is what your argument looks like to me:

If necessary abduction then any abduction (A)* is reasonable therefore Christianity (A) is reasonable. But then so are little green men or the flying spaghetti monster, also reasonable, by that standard.

Surely there must be something else involved in establishing that a proposition is reasonable.

 * (A) where A = proposition addressing the sum of observations

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An 'abductive necessity'

An 'abductive necessity' just means you can't think of any other explanation. It does not mean it is a reasonable explanation. That depends on the nature of the explanation itself and the assumptions behind it.

God-based ideas are NOT explanations, they are mysteries which require explanation. Since they raise or beg more questions than they can possibly explain, they do not rise to the level of an explanation, let alone reasonable ones.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

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Hambydammit

Hambydammit wrote:

Quote:
Right. I wasn't arguing that Christianity was actually true. Just that IF it is abductively necessary, it is reasonable. This by itself is a pretty potent premise.

Not really.

P: If abductively necessary, Christianity is reasonable.

P: Christianity is not abductively necessary.

C: Therefore: What the fuck are you talking about?

 

 

His argument is for establishing P(1), is all. I think P(2) is planned for a later post.

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BobSpence1 wrote:You haven't

BobSpence1 wrote:

You haven't yet extended any of your discussion to asserting anything about Christianity, as far as I can see. I presume this is yet to come.

Yep. It's all part of my Master Plan. I want to get this one through a single premise at a time.

Quote:
"Abductive necessity" is a very flimsy basis for anything, IOW, "I can't think of any other explanation. so this is the best availbale". Even if true, it may be a very weak indication of the worth of the proposed 'explanation'. if the 'explanation' has little or no positive evidence for it, and assumes the existence of entities of some non-trivial complexity or not-otherwise-observed attributes, the more honest position is "We Don't Know", or we have insufficient data to make any useful hypotheses at this time. I really think attaching 'necessity' to abductive 'conclusions' is a very questionable concept.

Why? If ONLY those entities explain the data, if they make everything fit together and you can imagine no better explanation, why not believe in them in spite of their complexity?

Quote:
Rutherford's experiment, which BTW involved positively charged alpha-particles - electrons, being negatively-charged, would not have bounced off the positively-charged nucleii in the foil - did not point to anything of a fundamentally different nature than the alpha-particles themselves, just that the substance of the atoms in the foil appeared to be highly concentrated, since most particles went straight thru, but a small percentage bounced off at sharp angles suggesting they had hit something much heavier than themselves.

This conclusion was thus a very simple and reasonable 'abduction' from the observations.

True but beside the point. Rutherford inferred the existence of an unobserved entity because it explained the data like nothing else. Ergo it is an instance of proof by abductive necessity, which was my point. If you are going to object to Christianity as abductive necessity by arguing that God is "fundamentally different" from the universe (you appear to be doing that though you are not too clear), you will need to present a clearer account of what constitutes a fundamental difference between two things, and then show why the existence of a fundamental difference between them should prevent abductions from one to the other.

Quote:
Whereas with God 'explanations', all you are doing here is attempting to conceal the basic "God-of-the-Gaps" under some distracting jargon.

God of the gaps is "I have no idea, therefore God". My argument is "Christianity qua worldview is an abductive necessity, therefore Christianity is reasonable." The two are logically distinct, because I'm arguing from abduction, while the god of the gaps guy is just throwing up his hands and inserting God for no reason what-so-ever.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Hambydammit

Hambydammit wrote:

Quote:
Right. I wasn't arguing that Christianity was actually true. Just that IF it is abductively necessary, it is reasonable. This by itself is a pretty potent premise.

Not really.

P: If abductively necessary, Christianity is reasonable.

P: Christianity is not abductively necessary.

C: Therefore: What the fuck are you talking about?

 

This made me laugh but it isn't quite what I was getting at. "If abductively necessary, then reasonable" is a potent premise because it changes the god debate into a holistic worldview v. worldview thing rather than the sort of linear debate that atheists prefer. Theism in general and Christianity in particular have always stood up to secular worldviews very well when the debate is construed like that.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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latincanuck

latincanuck wrote:

Presuppositionalist wrote:

latincanuck wrote:

ummm you still haven't shown how the christian religion is an abductive necessity.....a entails b....maybe I am missing something here, but you haven't proven that a entails christianity, simply but you haven't said anything to prove it at all. I can say everything you said and just change christian religions to atheism. You haven't proven that A entails B here at all. As well we can use deduction to show that b does not or does entail a. Yet something else you haven't done.

Right. I wasn't arguing that Christianity was actually true. Just that IF it is abductively necessary, it is reasonable. This by itself is a pretty potent premise.

I state again you haven't shown it to be an abductive necessity, or even IF it is an abductively necessary. What you have stated isn't an potent premise, it's just an empty statement, show it now, don't just say IF it is an abductive necessity, it's an empty premise without anything to back up your statement. Change christianity to hinduism ooooh there is an pretty potent premise....doesn't mean squat either but hey it's an potent premise.

Potent contra atheism. Not as much contra hinduism but we have a pretty good edge over them as well I think.

Look, this thread exists so I can try and get you to accept the hypothetical premise, "if christianity is abductively necessary, then it is reasonable". If you agree with that, leave. If you don't agree with it, explain why. But what you're doing right now really has no place in this thread.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Eloise

Eloise wrote:

Presuppositionalist wrote:

Saying that a proposition is abductively necessary means, roughly, that it's the best explanation we've got. It unifies all the data.

So evidently, then, it's not the proposition which is necessary but the abduction which is necessary. Christianity is a proposition, it can't gain necessity from the abduction, I think you'll agree. It might contingently gain reasonableness from the necessity for an abductive proposition, but that doesn't make the proposition necessary or reasonable of itself.

Neither induction nor abduction are really philosophically satisfying ways of finding out about the world, they are what we must use to survive given limited cognitive faculties. The proposition DOES become reasonable via abduction, FOR US, not in any Cartesian sense but simply because it is the best thing to believe. To demand anything else is really to demand that we have some non-human, omniscient perceptual faculty.

Quote:
I'm inclined to say that your argument has failed to demonstrate that any particular proposition can ever be an "abductive necessity", you've only narrowed it down to "those that address the sum of observations" notwithstanding whether Christianity even satisfies this criteria, it couldn't possibly be alone in doing so.

"We shall see", he said with a wry grin.

Quote:
Presuppositionalist wrote:

 If the Christian religion is an abductive necessity, the Christian religion is reasonable, since that is all that is necessary to establish a proposition for a limited intelligence.

Nope, that's all wrong.

This is what your argument looks like to me:

If necessary abduction then any abduction (A)* is reasonable therefore Christianity (A) is reasonable.

No. Not at all. I am not saying that every single imaginable abduction is reasonable. That is really so inaccurate I don't even believe you've read the OP.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Quote:Now we're going to see

Quote:

Now we're going to see how limited we are, i.e., in what specific realms the human faculty of cognition is limited. There are two sorts of propositions: empirical and a priori. Empirical propositions, i.e. propositions that take their persuasive power from sensory data, are all potentially flawed. Your eyes, your ears, your hands; all of these are bits of matter sending you bits of electricity. They can misfire. A source of information that may misfire cannot provide you with certainty. So you are limited to the realm of the a priori, right? But wait! A priori propositions are no surer. Your mind can lapse just like your senses. If you have ever made a mistake on a math problem, you have come to a false a priori conclusion. So the mind, just like your senses, may be wrong. And a source of information that may be wrong cannot provide you with certainty. Since all propositions are either empirical or a priori, and you are limited both in the a priori and empirical realms, you are totally limited. All of your beliefs, from "A is A" to "Obama's economic policy rules" are produced by a limited faculty of cognition.

Presup, do you know why this is a shitty argument for Christianity (or any other religion, really)?

 

How did you come to learn of your deity?

Answer: Through all of that imperfect sensory equipment and the imperfect processing unit you just mentioned!

 

Quote:

When we discovered that water boiled at a certain temperature, it was an inductive discovery, since it was based upon repeated, direct observations of the boiling of the water.

Wrong. The discovery itself was deductive; the inductive part of the discovery is was we infer from our deduction (Deduction: Bringing this pot of water up to 100 degrees C causes it to boil. Induction: All water boils at 100 degrees C).

Quote:

Neither of these are really philosophically satisfying methods of gathering information about the world.

...Why? Because you might actually be trapped in the Matrix?

At the very least, they are perfectly satisfying ways to gather information about our assumed world. True, the assumption may be wrong - this all just may be an illusion - but if that's the case, everything goes with it, including our conceptual abstractions (Gods and the like).

Quote:

Saying that a proposition is abductively necessary means, roughly, that it's the best explanation we've got. It unifies all the data.

Uh. Not really.

But why beat a dead horse.

Quote:

If the Christian religion is an abductive necessity can provide a logical, evidence-based unified theory for a field of science, the Christian religion is reasonable

I agree. So, let's see it.

Quote:
"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

- Leon Trotsky, Last Will & Testament
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Kevin R Brown

Kevin R Brown wrote:

Quote:

Now we're going to see how limited we are, i.e., in what specific realms the human faculty of cognition is limited. There are two sorts of propositions: empirical and a priori. Empirical propositions, i.e. propositions that take their persuasive power from sensory data, are all potentially flawed. Your eyes, your ears, your hands; all of these are bits of matter sending you bits of electricity. They can misfire. A source of information that may misfire cannot provide you with certainty. So you are limited to the realm of the a priori, right? But wait! A priori propositions are no surer. Your mind can lapse just like your senses. If you have ever made a mistake on a math problem, you have come to a false a priori conclusion. So the mind, just like your senses, may be wrong. And a source of information that may be wrong cannot provide you with certainty. Since all propositions are either empirical or a priori, and you are limited both in the a priori and empirical realms, you are totally limited. All of your beliefs, from "A is A" to "Obama's economic policy rules" are produced by a limited faculty of cognition.

Presup, do you know why this is a shitty argument for Christianity (or any other religion, really)?

 

How did you come to learn of your deity?

Answer: Through all of that imperfect sensory equipment and the imperfect processing unit you just mentioned!

That's actually not a problem for my argument. I am not arguing that my belief in God is somehow special. My belief in God might be wrong. I'm just making the observation that we have to use imperfect methods of finding out about the world.

Quote:
Quote:

When we discovered that water boiled at a certain temperature, it was an inductive discovery, since it was based upon repeated, direct observations of the boiling of the water.

Wrong. The discovery itself was deductive; the inductive part of the discovery is was we infer from our deduction (Deduction: Bringing this pot of water up to 100 degrees C causes it to boil. Induction: All water boils at 100 degrees C).

...so the discovery "that water boiled at a certain temperature" was inductive. Like I said. How embarassing for you.

Quote:
...Why? Because you might actually be trapped in the Matrix?

If you do not think there are philosophic problems with induction or abduction you have some catching up to do.

Quote:
At the very least, they are perfectly satisfying ways to gather information about our assumed world. True, the assumption may be wrong - this all just may be an illusion - but if that's the case, everything goes with it, including our conceptual abstractions (Gods and the like).

You are actually arguing for induction from induction in the first part of this. The belief that they are perfectly satisfying ways of gathering information about the world is established inductively.

Quote:
Quote:

Saying that a proposition is abductively necessary means, roughly, that it's the best explanation we've got. It unifies all the data.

Uh. Not really.

But why beat a dead horse.

No? "Abduction, or inference to the best explanation, is a method of reasoning in which one chooses the hypothesis that would, if true, best explain the relevant evidence." (source) That is pretty much exactly what I just said. Though admittedly my definition was off the cuff, which is why I said "roughly".

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Eloise wrote:His argument is

Eloise wrote:

His argument is for establishing P(1), is all. I think P(2) is planned for a later post.

THANK YOU! No one else grasped this.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Prseup, just get on with

Prseup, just get on with your fucking argument. I'm waiting with baited breath, really.

 

I'm sure that the huge, secularism-destroying neutron philosophy bomb you're about to drop will have the entire community worshipping Yahweh next Sunday.

Quote:
"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

- Leon Trotsky, Last Will & Testament
February 27, 1940


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Quote:This made me laugh but

Quote:
This made me laugh but it isn't quite what I was getting at. "If abductively necessary, then reasonable" is a potent premise because it changes the god debate into a holistic worldview v. worldview thing rather than the sort of linear debate that atheists prefer.

Ah.  I get it.  You want to start with the conclusion by claiming that it's holistic.  Clever.  But it's still horse shit.

[Edited for correct content.]

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Kevin R Brown wrote:Prseup,

Kevin R Brown wrote:

Prseup, just get on with your fucking argument. I'm waiting with baited breath, really.

 

I'm sure that the huge, secularism-destroying neutron philosophy bomb you're about to drop will have the entire community worshipping Yahweh next Sunday.

No. I have to get people to agree with this premise now because I refuse to type 4000 words just to have some idiot say "oh, but I don't buy abductive necessity". That sort of thing happens to me too often. You see that something leads to theism and all of a sudden you don't believe it any more.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Hambydammit wrote:Quote:This

Hambydammit wrote:

Quote:
This made me laugh but it isn't quite what I was getting at. "If abductively necessary, then reasonable" is a potent premise because it changes the god debate into a holistic worldview v. worldview thing rather than the sort of linear debate that atheists prefer.

Ah.  I get it.  You want to start with the conclusion by claiming that it's holistic.  Clever.  But it's still horse shit.

[Edited for correct content.]

Huh? The debate certainly should be holistic. I don't get you.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Quote:Huh? The debate

Quote:
Huh? The debate certainly should be holistic. I don't get you.

Honestly, this made me smile.  I know you don't get it.  That's the irony of it.

Ok... I'll help you out.  If you're using the standard definition of holistic, you mean that a system cannot be explained by the explanation of its component parts.  That is, the whole is something quantifiably different and separate from its parts.  The thing is, this is just a very clever way of presupposing the conclusion.  Ironic, no?

Here.  I'll prove it.  What's your epistemological justification for treating theism, or god, or whatever, holistically as opposed to "linearly" as you have said?

 

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No, it isn't reasonable.

IF Christianity is an abductive necessity, THEN Christianity is reasonable.

No, it isn't. If you come to the opinion that christism is the most reasonable conclusion through abductive reasoning that still doesn't bear any direct relation to reality. To expect a direct relation to reality all of your base assumptions would have to be 100% real, with no mistakes, and no deviance from the actual universe, otherwise there will always be a good chance that your "abductively necessary" conclusion is nothing more than a rambling narrative. Furthermore, given that you can never say that all of your assumptions are 100% true, you can never hope to abductively prove anything. Therefore your statement fails in the same way it would have had you stated that If christism is unreasonable, then christism is reasonable.

Incidentally, I didn't read the intervening thread too carefully, so I may have missed where someone else pointed it out, but ""x", while "not x"" != "100% reasonable, yet false." Instead ""x", while "not x"" = "100% reasonable while not 100% reasonable." 100% reasonable does not equal true.

All the same, I'm curious as to where this fetid bit of mental gyration was ultimately supposed to lead. Say on, and we'll pick that apart too Smiling

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Hambydammit wrote:Quote:Huh?

Hambydammit wrote:

Quote:
Huh? The debate certainly should be holistic. I don't get you.

Honestly, this made me smile.  I know you don't get it.  That's the irony of it.

Ok... I'll help you out.  If you're using the standard definition of holistic, you mean that a system cannot be explained by the explanation of its component parts.

No, that's not what I meant. Once we accept that theism can be established via abductive necessity, the debate becomes holistic, i.e., it becomes about what the worldviews can do rather than the individual parts. We have to do that because otherwise we cannot determine what explains what.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Presuppositionalist

Presuppositionalist wrote:

latincanuck wrote:

Presuppositionalist wrote:

latincanuck wrote:

ummm you still haven't shown how the christian religion is an abductive necessity.....a entails b....maybe I am missing something here, but you haven't proven that a entails christianity, simply but you haven't said anything to prove it at all. I can say everything you said and just change christian religions to atheism. You haven't proven that A entails B here at all. As well we can use deduction to show that b does not or does entail a. Yet something else you haven't done.

Right. I wasn't arguing that Christianity was actually true. Just that IF it is abductively necessary, it is reasonable. This by itself is a pretty potent premise.

I state again you haven't shown it to be an abductive necessity, or even IF it is an abductively necessary. What you have stated isn't an potent premise, it's just an empty statement, show it now, don't just say IF it is an abductive necessity, it's an empty premise without anything to back up your statement. Change christianity to hinduism ooooh there is an pretty potent premise....doesn't mean squat either but hey it's an potent premise.

Potent contra atheism. Not as much contra hinduism but we have a pretty good edge over them as well I think.

Look, this thread exists so I can try and get you to accept the hypothetical premise, "if christianity is abductively necessary, then it is reasonable". If you agree with that, leave. If you don't agree with it, explain why. But what you're doing right now really has no place in this thread.

Umm I cannot nor can anyone agree to that if there is nothing shown why I should agree with that statement. U want me to agree to it with blind faith. sorry show me how otherwise ur just making empty statements. Hence why it doesn't really occur in science, if your going to make that statement then you have to show us what the hell your talking about. Otherwise sorry I cannot agree with that because induction and deduction methods are going to be discarded, which are all parts of logical reasoning, because abduction alone can produce results that are incorrect.


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Quote:Once we accept that

Quote:
Once we accept that theism can be established via abductive necessity

What reason would I have for accepting this?

 

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Hambydammit wrote:Quote:Once

Hambydammit wrote:

Quote:
Once we accept that theism can be established via abductive necessity

What reason would I have for accepting this?

My OP.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Presuppositionalist wrote:

The proposition DOES become reasonable via abduction, FOR US,

If abduction is an end which it is not, it's a means, and you're not even arguing that it is an end you're just sneaking it into your conclusion.

Presuppositionalist wrote:

not in any Cartesian sense but simply because it is the best thing to believe.

An abducted proposition is not the "best thing to believe" because it was necessary to abduct it, and don't tell me you aren't saying that because you are. You are claiming that your argument is it's necessary to have a 'best thing to believe' because we're limited but the moment you imply that some particular 'best thing' will follow from your premise you've changed the argument to X proposition is reasonable simply because making shit up is necessary.

I'll concede that making shit up is necessary. And I'll concede that having a 'best' made up X is reasonable. But I won't agree that the necessity entails that X is reasonable. Best entails that X is reasonable not necessity - ergo there are NO abductively necessary X's ... k? There is necessary abduction and there is reasonable X ; they are two separate arguments.

To reiterate to the point of redundancy:

Abducting X is reasonable (True) Therefore X is reasonable (FALSE!)

 

Presuppositionalist wrote:

To demand anything else is really to demand that we have some non-human, omniscient perceptual faculty.

Okay, so I agree with this much. If all we can do is make shit up then thats all we can do, and in that case maing shit up is reasonable.  Great!

So then you say 'the made up shit is reasonable if it best addresses all perceptions'. And I think.. Fine OK, so what's the criteria for best? and your only answer is "addressing all perceptions".  You only do this to affirm your argument that there's such a thing as an "abductively necessary proposition" but you haven't demonstrated that at all.

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Presuppositionalist wrote:

BobSpence1 wrote:

 "Abductive necessity" is a very flimsy basis for anything, IOW, "I can't think of any other explanation. so this is the best availbale". Even if true, it may be a very weak indication of the worth of the proposed 'explanation'. if the 'explanation' has little or no positive evidence for it, and assumes the existence of entities of some non-trivial complexity or not-otherwise-observed attributes, the more honest position is "We Don't Know", or we have insufficient data to make any useful hypotheses at this time. I really think attaching 'necessity' to abductive 'conclusions' is a very questionable concept.

Why? If ONLY those entities explain the data, if they make everything fit together and you can imagine no better explanation, why not believe in them in spite of their complexity?

Yes - IF those entities 'explain' the data AND they themselves are solidly demonstrable entities in themselves, ie, if your explanation does not amount to explaining a mystery with a deeper mystery.

Quote:

Quote:
Rutherford's experiment, which BTW involved positively charged alpha-particles - electrons, being negatively-charged, would not have bounced off the positively-charged nucleii in the foil - did not point to anything of a fundamentally different nature than the alpha-particles themselves, just that the substance of the atoms in the foil appeared to be highly concentrated, since most particles went straight thru, but a small percentage bounced off at sharp angles suggesting they had hit something much heavier than themselves.

This conclusion was thus a very simple and reasonable 'abduction' from the observations.

True but beside the point. Rutherford inferred the existence of an unobserved entity because it parexplained the data like nothing else. Ergo it is an instance of proof by abductive necessity, which was my point. If you are going to object to Christianity as abductive necessity by arguing that God is "fundamentally different" from the universe (you appear to be doing that though you are not too clear), you will need to present a clearer account of what constitutes a fundamental difference between two things, and then show why the existence of a fundamental difference between them should prevent abductions from one to the other.

The inference that the mass in the foil must be concentrated in very small particles does not postulate the existence of any essentially different entity than what has already been taken to be well established, therefore it is an entirely reasonable 'abduction' if you want to use that word.

There will always be an element of subjectivity in deciding what constitutes a fundamental difference in kind between two entities, of course. But surely the essence of 'God' is that such a postulated being IS fundamentally unique in every way, and is essentially different from a universe of naturally interacting entities. If you want to identify God with the Universe, Ok, but doesn't explain anything and is not Christian.

Quote:
Quote:
Whereas with God 'explanations', all you are doing here is attempting to conceal the basic "God-of-the-Gaps" under some distracting jargon.

God of the gaps is "I have no idea, therefore God". My argument is "Christianity qua worldview is an abductive necessity, therefore Christianity is reasonable." The two are logically distinct, because I'm arguing from abduction, while the god of the gaps guy is just throwing up his hands and inserting God for no reason what-so-ever.

No, you are simply flat-out wrong here. 'Abductive necessity' can only mean that this is the best explanation YOU can think of. 'Best' does not necessarily mean reasonable, or adequate.

As Eloise also argued, 'Abductive necessity' doesn't really make sense.

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Quote:My OP.I read it.  It

Quote:
My OP.

I read it.  It doesn't contain any logical proof for accepting theism via abductive necessity.

 

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Mazid the Raider wrote:

IF Christianity is an abductive necessity, THEN Christianity is reasonable.

No, it isn't. If you come to the opinion that christism is the most reasonable conclusion through abductive reasoning that still doesn't bear any direct relation to reality. To expect a direct relation to reality all of your base assumptions would have to be 100% real, with no mistakes, and no deviance from the actual universe, otherwise there will always be a good chance that your "abductively necessary" conclusion is nothing more than a rambling narrative. Furthermore, given that you can never say that all of your assumptions are 100% true, you can never hope to abductively prove anything. Therefore your statement fails in the same way it would have had you stated that If christism is unreasonable, then christism is reasonable.

Okay Descartes, you're right that there might be some error somewhere in my abductive analysis. But all of our reasoning is like that, really. We have limited cognitive faculties and can only strive for approximate certainty about things. You cannot dismiss abduction on these grounds unless you are prepared to do away with induction as well.

Quote:
Incidentally, I didn't read the intervening thread too carefully, so I may have missed where someone else pointed it out, but ""x", while "not x"" != "100% reasonable, yet false." Instead ""x", while "not x"" = "100% reasonable while not 100% reasonable." 100% reasonable does not equal true.

Actually "x" can be reasonable while "not x" is the case. See the example in the OP with the straw.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Presuppositionalist wrote:

I want to begin by establishing what I mean by limited. By that, A cognitive faculty is limited if it is such that it may apply every test within its power to some proposition "x" and come to believe "x", while "not x" is the case. In other words, it is possible for some idea to be 100% reasonable, yet false. Here's an example: A very very young child might see a straw inserted into a glass of water, note that the straw appears to bend, and conclude that straws bend when inserted into water. Within the young child's context of knowledge, this is reasonable, and even the most strenuous logical analyses could not change that. But it's false!

That's what I take "limited" to mean. Now we're going to see how limited we are, i.e., in what specific realms the human faculty of cognition is limited. There are two sorts of propositions: empirical and a priori. Empirical propositions, i.e. propositions that take their persuasive power from sensory data, are all potentially flawed. Your eyes, your ears, your hands; all of these are bits of matter sending you bits of electricity. They can misfire. A source of information that may misfire cannot provide you with certainty. So you are limited to the realm of the a priori, right? But wait! A priori propositions are no surer. Your mind can lapse just like your senses. If you have ever made a mistake on a math problem, you have come to a false a priori conclusion. So the mind, just like your senses, may be wrong. And a source of information that may be wrong cannot provide you with certainty. Since all propositions are either empirical or a priori, and you are limited both in the a priori and empirical realms, you are totally limited. All of your beliefs, from "A is A" to "Obama's economic policy rules" are produced by a limited faculty of cognition.

Ok, so if our senses are too limited to figure out and discover things about the universe or even our own world, then, how can we know that God exists? Or if God just magically pops into our minds and makes us believe in him, how can we trust these thoughts, wouldn't that thought also be the product of limited "machinery"?
 

Also, what would be the point of science or theology if we are too limited to discover things for ourselves? What would be the point of argueing anything?


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Stosis wrote:Ok, so if our

Stosis wrote:

Ok, so if our senses are too limited to figure out and discover things about the universe or even our own world, then, how can we know that God exists? Or if God just magically pops into our minds and makes us believe in him, how can we trust these thoughts, wouldn't that thought also be the product of limited "machinery"?

I wasn't saying that we should dismiss all of our beliefs because they are the product of limited cognitive faculties. Nor was I saying that my belief in God is somehow special and infallible. My point is simply that we have to work with a limited cognitive faculty, so we have to accept imperfect methods of knowing about the world like abductive necessity and induction.
 

Quote:
Also, what would be the point of science or theology if we are too limited to discover things for ourselves? What would be the point of argueing anything?

We CAN discover things. I've never denied that. Seems pretty obvious, really. Why wouldn't we be able to?

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


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Hambydammit wrote:Quote:My

Hambydammit wrote:

Quote:
My OP.

I read it.  It doesn't contain any logical proof for accepting theism via abductive necessity.

But it contains logical proof for accepting the possibility of establishing theism by abductive necessity.

Q: Why didn't you address (post x) that I made in response to you nine minutes ago???

A: Because I have (a) a job, (b) familial obligations, (c) social obligations, and (d) probably a lot of other atheists responded to the same post you did, since I am practically the token Christian on this site now. Be patient, please.


Mazid the Raider
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You have it the wrong way around...

Presuppositionalist wrote:

Mazid the Raider wrote:

IF Christianity is an abductive necessity, THEN Christianity is reasonable.

No, it isn't. If you come to the opinion that christism is the most reasonable conclusion through abductive reasoning that still doesn't bear any direct relation to reality. To expect a direct relation to reality all of your base assumptions would have to be 100% real, with no mistakes, and no deviance from the actual universe, otherwise there will always be a good chance that your "abductively necessary" conclusion is nothing more than a rambling narrative. Furthermore, given that you can never say that all of your assumptions are 100% true, you can never hope to abductively prove anything. Therefore your statement fails in the same way it would have had you stated that If christism is unreasonable, then christism is reasonable.

Okay Descartes, you're right that there might be some error somewhere in my abductive analysis. But all of our reasoning is like that, really. We have limited cognitive faculties and can only strive for approximate certainty about things. You cannot dismiss abduction on these grounds unless you are prepared to do away with induction as well.

Quote:
Incidentally, I didn't read the intervening thread too carefully, so I may have missed where someone else pointed it out, but ""x", while "not x"" != "100% reasonable, yet false." Instead ""x", while "not x"" = "100% reasonable while not 100% reasonable." 100% reasonable does not equal true.

Actually "x" can be reasonable while "not x" is the case. See the example in the OP with the straw.

It isn't up to me to disprove you abduction argument, it's up to you to prove that abduction is worth the time it takes to type the word - which you have not done.

The OP with the straw was wrong, as pointed out by my eloquent colleague. Case X is a statement, while Case Not X is the inverse of the same statement, not a rough disagreement. If case X is True, then case Not X has to be Not True, not a statement about reasonable or unreasonable. You can't change what you're talking about halfway through a logical proof and expect me to not mock you for it. Mockmockmockmockmock! Sticking out tongue

Seriously, though, you haven't proven that your OP was at all valid.

"But still I am the Cat who walks by himself, and all places are alike to me!" ~Rudyard Kipling

Mazid the Raider says: I'd rather face the naked truth than to go "augh, dude, put some clothes on or something" and hand him some God robes, cause you and I know that the naked truth is pale, hairy, and has an outie
Entomophila says: Ew. AN outie


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Quote:But it contains

Quote:
But it contains logical proof for accepting the possibility of establishing theism by abductive necessity.

No, it doesn't.  Do you know what a proof is?  How about an argument?  Do you understand what makes either valid?

 

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Of course he doesn't.

Of course he doesn't. Arguments and proofs are only for fascist commie carpetba--

(Yeah, alright. That joke's probably getting old by now. Sticking out tongue)

 

That said, my attunement to the Force is allowing me to sense that the above conversation is going to head the same way as the one you and he had over game theory. Smiling

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"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

- Leon Trotsky, Last Will & Testament
February 27, 1940


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After all this discussion,

After all this discussion, it still seems like Presup is trying to establish (or use an existing) epistemology in which ignorance equates to knowledge. This in spite of the fact that we have a decent epistemological tool (science) that allows us to increase knowledge in a methodical, verifiable way. I will state again: there is no other epistemology that allows us to learn about reality. None.

So, I think what Presup is attempting to do (correct me if I'm wrong, Sir) is to establish that it is reasonable to use our imagination to explain that which we don't understand.

He uses Rutherford's foil experiments to explain how he proposes to use abduction. However, what he ignores (or seems to be unable to grasp) is that Rutherford's conclusion was useful only inasmuch as it made verifiable predictions about the nature of the universe. Without the testability and falsifiability, Rutherford's conclusions would've been unreasonable.

I suspect one might argue that it's reasonable to accept the conclusion as true until such time as it might be tested. I'd even agree with that. However, if there is no discernible test to support or disprove a conclusion, it is illogical and unreasonable to even entertain the conclusion as a possibility. Without some method of verification, a conclusion is unreasonable, no matter how it was derived.

What makes unprovable conclusions unreasonable? Why, glad you asked. They are unreasonable because they explain nothing. They are unreasonable because they interfere with the ability to reason about the issue they claim to explain. No further conclusions can be based on an unproven conclusion, so they don't forward knowledge or understanding. They provide only the illusion of understanding.

I'm not just singling out this argument because you plan to use it as a basis for an argument for Christianity, Presup. I am also beginning to believe that string theory is unreasonable as well, partly because its various incarnations and permutations have been unable to produce one verifiable test. String theory seems perpetually on the verge of producing results, but after all this time, it seems like it might be a bust.

So, no matter which way you derive Christianity, it is only reasonable if and only if it advances knowledge and understanding via verifiable predictions.

That said, I'd like to see this argument you propose for the ontological necessity of Christianity.

[EDIT clarification]

When I say, "Accept a proposed explanation as true until it can be tested," I mean accept it as true for the purpose of experimentation. I certainly don't propose to accept it as true for the purposes of basing real-world decisions on it.

"Yes, I seriously believe that consciousness is a product of a natural process. I find that the neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers who proceed from that premise are the ones who are actually making useful contributions to our understanding of the mind." - PZ Myers


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Presuppositionalist

Presuppositionalist wrote:
Saying that a proposition is abductively necessary means, roughly, that it's the best explanation we've got. It unifies all the data.

I object to your language.  It seems to be intentionally confusing.

What do you mean by "the best explanation we've got". Was it the "best explanation" if later it is falsified?

There is nothing necessary about an hypotheses that seems like the best explanation prior to verification.

-------------------------------

IT IS IRRATIONAL TO CONFIDENTLY BELIEVE IN AN HYPOTHESES BEFORE IT IS TESTED - EVEN IF ITS THE ONLY ONE YOU HAVE.

When a scientist notices something that he can not confidently  explain, then he begins thinking of alternative hypotheses to explain it, and it is common , in fact -  I think in most cases, the initial hypotheses (which at that time is the best explanation he has)  is wrong.

Scientists do not believe an hypotheses just because it seems to be the best explanation. We do not believe in untested hypotheses. It is unreasonable to believe that a hypotheses is true until its been tested.  We only believe that the best hypotheses is the one that should be explored and tested.

If we can only imagine one hypotheses to explain the data, then we need more data and we need to use our imagination some more.

Any hypotheses that is not falsifiable (we know how we could falsify it if it were false) or at least testable to a high confidence level, is rejected as an explanation because we can never trust that its true.
 

---------------------------------

Magic is not an explanation for anything. God is just a synonym for magic.

Q. Why is the sky blue?

A. magic.

All religion is just magical thinking. People are possessed by magical fairy demons called souls. Magical super fairies called Gods create magical places and control everything with magic. People use magical rituals like prayer and baptism to produce beneficial magical effects. Its all imaginary.

when you say "faith" I think "evil lies"
when you say "god" I think "santa clause"


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Quote:Saying that a

Quote:
Saying that a proposition is abductively necessary means, roughly, that it's the best explanation we've got. It unifies all the data.

No, that's parsimony.

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Gods are not explanations

God is not an explanation for anything because the magic word "God" does not explain anything. Claiming that God explains something is exactly the same as simply claiming that "magic" explains that thing. Unless you can present evidence explaining how God works, then God alone can not be an explanation.

For many thousands of years imaginary Gods have been used as the wrong explanation for thousands of things that people were ignorant about. For thousands of things God was always the wrong explanation. The fact that God has been proposed as an explanation for something, that people are ignorant about, is not evidence that God exists.

Over ten thousand different Gods are worshiped and none of them exist. Extraordinary beings, for which there is not even ordinary evidence, do not exist. There are an infinite number of imaginary extraordinary beings that could be proposed, but even ordinary evidence for the existence of  a real extraordinary being has never been provided.

God can not possibly be the best explanation for anything. You propose your God as an explanation for something, and I propose the coffee cup on my desk as a better explanation. You clam that your God magically does whatever it is that he is supposedly an explanation for, and I claim that my coffee cup magically does whatever it is supposedly an explanation for. My coffee cup is a much better explanation  then your god because my coffee cup is just as likely to be magical as your god, and at least we know that my coffee cup exists.

when you say "faith" I think "evil lies"
when you say "god" I think "santa clause"