Why logic supersedes science

Tom_the_Who
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Why logic supersedes science

(1)  Axioms and theorems are deductively true, and therefore they are universal and necessary; scientific laws are inductively true, and we don't know for certain that they'll still be true in 10 minutes time.

(2)  Science presupposes logic; if a scientist didn't have the ability to make proper inferences, then s/he would not be able to practice his or her methodology.  On the other hand, as opposed to a scientist whose discipline requires at least a passing familiarity with logic, someone who's not a scientist can still be an expert logician.

(3)  The laws of logic are true at every possible world; scientific laws are true only in possible worlds where there's nature.

 


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BobSpence1 wrote:Yep, that

BobSpence1 wrote:

Yep, that was the fundamental error, IMHO, of Plato and his 'Idealism'. They could not get their head around the idea of the truly abstract, that only exists in any sense as a relationship between real objects, as a pattern, of interacting cells in our brain, or as coded pattern of words on paper, etc.

Dunno quite see why they mainly talk about this in the context of Logic. It equally applies to the Law of Gravity, or of Conservation of Momentum, etc, etc. All are just our ways of expressing what we come to understand about some attribute of reality, which exists quite independently of any 'mind'.

My hypothesis, based on a memetic understanding of religious thought: In order to survive, irrational religious thought benefits from crippling anything that could defeat it. Enemy number 1 would be logic itself. By corrupting logic; by putting it perfectly backwards, with 'god' as its basis; by inserting a primal, axiomatic contradiction at its core, from which anything can be 'proven', including 'god' itself; presuppositionalism has (by whatever means of mutation, it's not important what, though that's a worthy research topic) hit upon an adaptation where logic is so fundamentally corrupted and crippled, that the theists who fall prey to this meme are inherently prevented from applying logical thinking to get out of it. And so the meme thrives.

It's like an immunodeficiency virus of the mind. Cripple rational thought so that the meme can't be countered by rational thought itself. Maybe we should call it a rationodeficiency meme, an RM, and the human form of it would be HRM. And the syndrome it causes could be Acquired Rational Deficiency Syndrome, or ARDS. As in, "I'm not quite sure what to make of this new forum member. His latest post is just fu--wait a minute. Hrm... I think he's got ARDS."

We are desperately working on a vaccine. But in the meantime, we're trying out different therapies to deal with the symptoms, suppress the mental activity of the meme, and/or prevent the spread of it as best we can.

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Kapkao wrote:BobSpence1

Kapkao wrote:

BobSpence1 wrote:
Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary.

We absolutely know that "Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary"?

Wow, quite the paradox. Or maybe just above my feeble powers of comprehension. In any case...

There is no paradox in Bob's post, only yours, because you put words into Bob's mouth. He didn't say "We absolutely know that...". Paradox resolved.

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natural wrote:Kapkao

natural wrote:

Kapkao wrote:

BobSpence1 wrote:
Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary.

We absolutely know that "Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary"?

Wow, quite the paradox. Or maybe just above my feeble powers of comprehension. In any case...

There is no paradox in Bob's post, only yours, because you put words into Bob's mouth. He didn't say "We absolutely know that...". Paradox resolved.

There is another aspect that Kapkao is missing, to distinguish between statements about objective reality, ie the existence and attributes of actual entities/objects, of the progress of events, etc, which don't raise any such issues, and statements which refer to knowledge itself, which are in a different category, and should be more carefully phrased, as riskng serious self-reference.

And of course, as you say, I was not specifically claiming absolute knowledge - to assume I was would mean that K completely missed the point of the rest of my post, and would have been explicitly in contradiction to what I stated in the quote itself.

But he has a point, only to the extent that statements about knowledge itself need to be examined more carefully than straightforward claims of what exists or not, etc. In this case, particularly since I was making claims of the practical impossibility of certainty in general, there really isn't a problem.

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natural wrote:My hypothesis,

natural wrote:

My hypothesis, based on a memetic understanding of religious thought: In order to survive, irrational religious thought benefits from crippling anything that could defeat it. Enemy number 1 would be logic itself. By corrupting logic; by putting it perfectly backwards, with 'god' as its basis; by inserting a primal, axiomatic contradiction at its core, from which anything can be 'proven', including 'god' itself; presuppositionalism has (by whatever means of mutation, it's not important what, though that's a worthy research topic) hit upon an adaptation where logic is so fundamentally corrupted and crippled, that the theists who fall prey to this meme are inherently prevented from applying logical thinking to get out of it. And so the meme thrives.

Which is what makes rational discourse with them, impossible.

This whole TAG canard is easily debunked when you point out that 'logic' is based on empiricism and the natural world, and the limits and constraints on everything we've observed.

Without universal constants, nothing would follow any pattern such that we could predict or assume anything. But, the universe appears to be extremely constant, which means that there are limits and constraints to what is possible/not possible.

Logic is simply a term to describe what is possible, or not possible, based on observations of the natural world.

How could a list of what is possible/not possible within reality be compiled without empiricism of reality?

WTF?...

 

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

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Ktulu wrote:Kapkao

Ktulu wrote:

Kapkao wrote:

BobSpence1 wrote:
Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary.

We absolutely know that "Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary"?

Wow, quite the paradox. Or maybe just above my feeble powers of comprehension. In any case...

Think of how easily you can refute that by providing an example of absolute knowledge...

Loaded suggestion, and irrelevant.

“A meritocratic society is one in which inequalities of wealth and social position solely reflect the unequal distribution of merit or skills amongst human beings, or are based upon factors beyond human control, for example luck or chance. Such a society is socially just because individuals are judged not by their gender, the colour of their skin or their religion, but according to their talents and willingness to work, or on what Martin Luther King called 'the content of their character'. By extension, social equality is unjust because it treats unequal individuals equally.” "Political Ideologies" by Andrew Heywood (2003)


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natural wrote:Kapkao

natural wrote:

Kapkao wrote:

BobSpence1 wrote:
Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary.

We absolutely know that "Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary"?

Wow, quite the paradox. Or maybe just above my feeble powers of comprehension. In any case...

There is no paradox in Bob's post, only yours, because you put words into Bob's mouth. He didn't say "We absolutely know that...". Paradox resolved.

Sorry. I didn't use inexact English this time. I'll try to be more careful next time and use even less inexact English.  As for the semantics of what BobSpence1 actually said, apparently I have a point (???)... but there really isn't a problem with what he said.

Quote:
But he has a point, only to the extent that statements about knowledge itself need to be examined more carefully than straightforward claims of what exists or not, etc.

Gee golly mister... logic is fun! Well, maybe it is at least useful. Or perhaps thought-provoking. Possibly functional for bedtime reading? [/banter] [/unwillingtolearn]

“A meritocratic society is one in which inequalities of wealth and social position solely reflect the unequal distribution of merit or skills amongst human beings, or are based upon factors beyond human control, for example luck or chance. Such a society is socially just because individuals are judged not by their gender, the colour of their skin or their religion, but according to their talents and willingness to work, or on what Martin Luther King called 'the content of their character'. By extension, social equality is unjust because it treats unequal individuals equally.” "Political Ideologies" by Andrew Heywood (2003)


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How about this?Insofar as we

How about this?

Insofar as we understand knowledge and knowing the concept of absolute knowledge is neither attainable, identifiable or necessary?

Unless of course you have something that you know absolutely that you'd like to share...

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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I hate being a grammar nazi,

I hate being a grammar nazi, but a semi-colon or comma there makes a pretty big difference on how that sentence is read. I'd have worded it thus:

Insofar as we understand knowledge and knowing; the concept of absolute knowledge is neither attainable, identifiable, or necessary?

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Vastet wrote:I hate being a

Vastet wrote:
I hate being a grammar nazi, but a semi-colon or comma there makes a pretty big difference on how that sentence is read. I'd have worded it thus: Insofar as we understand knowledge and knowing; the concept of absolute knowledge is neither attainable, identifiable, or necessary?

I think faster than I proofread. I als0 hit send faster than I proofread. My apologies and thanks.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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Kapkao wrote:Sorry. I didn't

Kapkao wrote:

Sorry. I didn't use inexact English this time. I'll try to be more careful next time and use even less inexact English. 

Inexactness: (Usually) only works for expressing opinions not intended to be stated as facts. For facts, esp. for logical statements, lacking exactness (often) leads to misunderstandings. (Note wiggle wording)

Quote:
As for the semantics of what BobSpence1 actually said, apparently I have a point (???)... but there really isn't a problem with what he said.

I think he was trying to throw you a bone. (Not snarky cat. Just opinion, hence wiggle words: "I think" )

Quote:
But he has a point, only to the extent that statements about knowledge itself need to be examined more carefully than straightforward claims of what exists or not, etc.

Quote:
Gee golly mister... logic is fun! Well, maybe it is at least useful. Or perhaps thought-provoking. Possibly functional for bedtime reading? [/banter] [/unwillingtolearn]

(Not sure as to the extent of jokingness, or possibly frustration, of "/unwillingtolearn" )

I'll just focus on Bob's original statement and why it makes sense to me.

"Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary."

This is not (necessarily) an absolute statement. In fact, in order for it to be meaningful, it must not be, as you pointed out. (Note that 'must' is not necessarily absolute either; in this case, it is not. I'm using it in a logical sense, which is distinct from an absolute sense.) So, a charitable (that's the actual term, I'm not accusing you of anything) reading of Bob's statement would exclude the non-sensical absolutist interpretation.

Do you see why I'm saying that it's not necessarily an absolute statement? And why Bob almost certainly (wiggle) didn't mean it as absolute? If not, point this out to me and I'll elaborate.

So, accepting that he did not mean it in an absolute sense, when I read your re-statement of it:

"We absolutely know that "Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary"?"

It seemed to me (wiggle) you were taking the absolutist interpretation. Unless maybe you were making a joke? Honest question, not snark.

And so, it seemed to me that you were (perhaps/probably unintentionally) inserting a paradox into his statement that wasn't there to begin with.

Perhaps I should elaborate on the non-absolute interpretation, instead of waiting for your clarification (I know it sounds pedantic to state that. Zero snark intended here. I'm attempting to overcompensate for our previous misunderstanding, and to be very explicit/clear in my intentions.)

(A little less formally-speaking now, for the sake of time)

It doesn't have to be an absolute statement that absolute knowledge is unattainable, unidentifiable, and unnecessary. There can be an implied "as far as I know" in there, which itself implies "to a very high degree of probability, in my estimation".

For example, if I state, "evolution is a fact", I don't have to mean a 100% absolute fact, I can just mean a scientific fact, which carries with it the concepts of uncertainty, margins of error, and provisionally-accepted-until-some-better-theory-comes-along.

In very much the same way, you can see for yourself that absolute knowledge is unattainable, unidentifiable, and unnecessary.

Has anyone ever attained it? No. Am I 100% absolutely certain of that? No, also. Just very very very very confidently certain, to within a very high degree of probability, in my estimation.

Has anyone ever even identified it? No. Same reasoning. Not an absolute statement.

Since none of us have it, or are even able to identify it, is it necessary? No. (Snarky cat would add an 'obviously' to that, as a know-it-all flair.) Still not an absolute statement.

Speaking in this non-absolute way, Bob is (I'm presuming, but I feel very confident in doing so) keeping open the possibility that he might be wrong, while at the same time, expressing something he thinks is so important and so super-highly probable, that he is willing to risk the very small chance of being wrong, for the greater impact of stating it with the oomph that comes from that kind of phrasing:

Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary

It is true (in the pragmatic sense of being very highly predictive of reality), it sounds nicely authoritative (without being absolutist about it), and it's a very useful idea to have in mind, especially for theists like we've met in this thread, who think they have absolute knowledge, they can identify it, and it is necessary.

If Bob had wanted to state it as an absolute, I can again presume, because I am very confident about this, that he would have used your phrasing, "We absolutely know that" rather than his more-ambiguous-but-more-defensible phrasing. I would also say (this is a more wiggly way of saying that I'm confident to presume) that if he wanted to make a clear distinction at the expense of oomph, he would have stated it with more of a wiggle wording like, "Absolute knowledge seems neither attainable or identifiable or necessary".

Annoyingly offensive pedantic mode: Off

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Just a side note: In

Just a side note:

In contrast to the annoyingly pedantic mode of my previous post, here is how I attempted to say basically the same thing, without the pedantry:

"There is no paradox in Bob's post, only yours, because you put words into Bob's mouth. He didn't say "We absolutely know that...". Paradox resolved."

It's short, perhaps comes off with a bit of 'indignant cat', but it only took me 30 seconds to write, as opposed to several minutes. So, it's a trade-off, I would suggest.

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The 'claim' that comes

The 'claim' that comes closest to being possibly wrong is 'unattainable'.

But the idea of 'absolute' knowledge is useless unless we have some way of 'knowing' absolutely that a given 'fact' is absolutely correct. There is a circularity in there that emphasizes my next point about "unidentifiable". IOW, even if we happened to have stumbled across some theory, some explanation, which happens to be 'absolutely' accurate, unless we have an absolute way of identifying it as such, that can only be mere speculation. I am not sure how best to put that argument. Maybe it amounts to pointing out that the concept of 'absolute' knowledge is as ultimately problematic as 'omnipotence'.

Unless we can know that a given claim is absolutely correct, and know that our knowledge that it is 'absolutely' correct is absolutely correct, and know that our knowledge that it is 'absolutely' correct to claim that our knowledge that it is absolutely correct is absolutely correct is absolutely correct... you see the recursive problem? Perhaps I should have identified infinite recursion rather than circularity as the problem.  Maybe I should just claim that a claim of absolute knowledge is 'undecidable' in the sense of Godel's theorem - you cannot use logic to prove logic itself is 'valid'. Deductive systems therefore cannot be 'complete'.

Note to self: I must read Douglas Hofstadter's "Godel, Escher, Bach" again....

The last qualifier, 'unnecessary', is about as close to being 'absolute' as one can get, ironically. That is just another aspect of the Godelian logical trap of making self-referential statements ( "This sentence is false" as the archetype), where logic demonstrably fails.

Does this help you, Kapkao, grasp the fundamental problems with 'absolute' knowledge I was trying to express in a more compact form by my statement?

The success of the technological revolution that surrounds us is undeniable (?), and manifestly does not depend on absolute knowledge.

Claims and concerns about 'absolute' knowledge are ultimately pointless, IMHO. All we can hope for, all we need, is a way to assess, albeit approximately, the likelihood that some model adequately matches reality for the purpose, for its application.

Natural, would this correspond, roughly, to your idea of 'pragmatism'?

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

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Bob, I started using

Bob, I started using pragmatism around 2000 or so, but I was more vague about it then. Since then it has become more and more clear to me that it requires making predictions.

And when I finally got around to learning about Bayesian probability, my idea of pragmatism has begun to conform more and more to probability theory.

The only reason I don't formulate pragmatism as probability theory (don't even think I could if I tried), is that I treat it as 'more basic' than any culturally learned thing. If it were to depend on probability theory, I would be engaging in circular logic.

So, I would say that, yes, pragmatism is roughly, approximately, choosing a conceptual model (or hypothesis) that has the highest likelihood of (is best at, most useful for) matching/predicting reality. *

And I would also say that Bayesian probability is why pragmatism works in our reality. In other words, the success of Bayesian probability vindicates (not to say 'justifies' though) pragmatism.

I also have a quite straightforward argument for pragmatism based on evolution (of the brain). This would also be after-the-fact (a vindication, not justification) observation.

As for justifying pragmatism, I think the best way is by retortion, which is itself a pragmatic argument: We all have to use it anyway, and we all just have that ability (intuition), so we might as well use it. I'm not 100% sure it avoids circularity, but it's as close to self-bootstrapping as I've been able to work out so far. It's a 'good enough' argument, for me. Fewest assumptions, works fine for day to day life, nobody's got anything better that I know of, so I'm going with it.

* The reason I don't go with correspondence theory is that it seems circular to me. How do you know which model most closely 'corresponds to reality'? I don't think correspondence can self-bootstrap the way pragmatism can. So, I figure you start with self-bootstrapped pragmatism, and then you justify correspondence theory with pragmatism because it is useful. From that point on, the two are basically indistinguishable.

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First of all, hello to you

First of all, hello to you too Natural it is very good to meet you.  Apparently my questions got more of a response than I bargained for lol.

Let me respond to everyone by saying just a few things.  We all see the same evidence but we interpret that evidence differently because we have different starting points.  That is to say the way we view things.  Athiests may say you cant presuppose anything before the evidence, but I think we MUST.  To say we must come to evidence in a kind of unbiased neutral manner is itself a belief.  THe philosophy that we should come to evidence without a philosophy is a philosophy and self refuting.  We all bring assumptions to the table.  We presuppose our senses are reliable, and we presuppose our memories are valid etc etc.   Presuppositions are the basic beliefs of reality.  They are the rules of interpretation that we assume at the outset.  This standard of "no presuppostitions allowed" is ground on which I choose not to stand. 

Response regarding the laws of logic

      1.  If the laws of logic were simply DESCRIPTIONS of HOW WE THINK then why would we need the laws of logic to correct how we think?  

       2. If the laws of logic were material or chemical reactions in the brain then they wouldnt be laws in the first place.  There would be no consistency among brains with

           different chemical reactions.

       3. If the laws of logic were a property of the universe then how do you account for the changing random universe? No,  the laws of logic do not describe the universe they

           describe abstract concepts. 

Yes I do in fact presuppose and posit the Christian GOD who describes his nature as invariant, immaterial and universal.  It is the only way I can account for invariant immaterial universal laws of logic.  On this ground I will argue.  So I ask again how do athiests account for logic?  Its been a long day. Good night all.

 


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wakawaka wrote: We all see

wakawaka wrote:
We all see the same evidence but we interpret that evidence differently because we have different starting points. 

You missed the point.

How we individually interpret 'gravity' doesn't affect the nature of gravity. It behaves consistently. Because it behaves consistently, we can make accurate predictions.

It's these 'universal constants' that constrain and limit everything into only 1 possible outcome, no matter how many times you repeat the exact same experiment.

The 'absolute certainty' of the 'universal constants' is characterized as a 'logical' outcome.

 

Now WTF does this have to do with the 'mind' of baby Jesus?

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

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" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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natural wrote:I'll just

natural wrote:

I'll just focus on Bob's original statement and why it makes sense to me.

"Absolute knowledge is neither attainable or identifiable or necessary."

I don't know why anyone would have any issue with Bob's statement, at all.

'Absolute knowledge' means the maximum expanse of data possible under every possible circumstance.

His statement is completely sound, IMO.

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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The Laws of Logic are our

The Laws of Logic are our descriptions of a couple of elementary aspects of reality, namely that it reality is subdividable into relatively consistently identifiable elements, and when we refer to any given entity A, we should be careful to distinguish it from those elements which it are not part of A.

That is all.

The concepts are stored in the chemical state of parts of the brain, but that does not mean they are chemicals, any more than the data stored in a computer chip is silicon.

Different chips, magnetic disks, printed text, can all store the same information, so different chemical reactions does not mean different information.

Not accepting the supernatural does not require excluding the immaterial, eg concepts, ideas, relationships, etc.

The laws of logic are a description of a way of perceiving the universe. The fact that the Universe changes does not mean that the laws must change, since they are by definition aspects of the universe which are common to, apply to, all the changing configutarions of the components of the Universe.The fact is that the Universe is a mix of random aspects and more ordered parts.

A god is totally unnecessary to explain any of this, and represents a grossly, wildy, unjustified assumption. Whereas the Laws of Logic are at the other extreme, an minimal set of assumptions to help us organize our thoughts about the Universe.

Yes we need to make basic assumptions about reality, but we do not need anything absolute or eternal or fixed, just adequately consistent and stable to allow us to go about our lives. We start with the most minimal. We also should be prepared to adjust them as we accumulate more observations and correlations between those observations.

It is entirely reasonable that our senses have a useful correlation with external reality, they do not need to be perfect.

OTOH even if there is a God, you have no way to know anything about such a being's attributes and motives. You are making stuff up.

In fact, if there really were a being of such power, we could have NO certain knowledge of anything, since such a being could change all laws at any time, at a whim.

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

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


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BobSpence1 wrote:The Laws of

BobSpence1 wrote:

OTOH even if there is a God, you have no way to know anything about such a being's attributes and motives. You are making stuff up.

In fact, if there really were a being of such power, we could have NO certain knowledge of anything, since such a being could change all laws at any time, at a whim.

The massive problem with any monogod claim, is that it's actually 2 claims in 1.

It's a claim that the there is 1 and only 1 being, with no evidence that there could not be a 'population' of 'gods', which would cause huge problems for their 'absolute' reference point.

If there was 2 gods, there could be 'disagreement' as to 'right/wrong', or 'good/evil'.

They can't prove there's not 2 or more 'gods' anymore that they can prove that there is such things are even possible/probable.

The legend of Lil' baby Jesus doesn't do squat.

 

It's such a complete house of cards theory.

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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I understand your

I understand your definitions on the laws of logic and the role of contradiction. However, I am not questioning your definitions of the laws of logic Mr. Spence.  I am asking you how you account for them?  If they dont need to be accounted for then how can you be sure of anything?  Without accounting for these laws we are reduced to arbitrary circular assumptions.

Indeed an athiest may be quite comfortable using these immaterial laws in his naturalistic world view. Of this I have no doubt, but without account it is like a man arguing against the existance of air while breathing in to make his case.

 

You said, "A god is totally unnecessary to explain any of this, and represents a grossly, wildy, unjustified assumption." 

On the contrary, there is no other way to account for the laws of logic.  Logically and initially I must posit one.  Furthermore I have found no other supernature being that will work other than the Christian God.  Perhaps you can? I would also note that your sentence is also an arbitrary assumption.

 

You also said, "Yes we need to make basic assumptions about reality, but we do not need anything absolute or eternal or fixed, just adequately consistent and stable to allow us to go about our lives. "

But if the laws of logic are not absolute then why would we need to make basic assumptions in the first place?

 

Furthermore you say,"It is entirely reasonable that our senses have a useful correlation with external reality, they do not need to be perfect."    Why do you assume this and how can you know for certain?  Do our senses NEED to be accurate?

 

You said."OTOH even if there is a God, you have no way to know anything about such a being's attributes and motives. You are making stuff up."  I didnt make up the Bible, and it does give account of his attributes and motives.

 

Finally you say,"In fact, if there really were a being of such power, we could have NO certain knowledge of anything, since such a being could change all laws at any time, at a whim."        Interesting, why do you assume he would have whims?  This is not a problem for me since I start with the presupposition of the Christian God who gives accounts for his nature.


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wakawaka wrote:I understand

wakawaka wrote:

I understand your definitions on the laws of logic and the role of contradiction. However, I am not questioning your definitions of the laws of logic Mr. Spence.  I am asking you how you account for them? 

The 'account' for the 'logical' (aka: absolute (sic) predictability) of reality is the universal constants that rigidly limit and constrain things.

You've been given the long and the short of it in numerous posts, and you still keep asking for an 'account'.

Either you're being intentionally obtuse, or have comprehension problems. It's really simple.

Axioms are based on 'universal constants'.

 

If there were no universal constants limiting and constraining things, no reliable predictions could be made, and the axiom 'the outcome of 'xxx' could be anything' would underpin our observations of reality.

wakawaka wrote:
You said, "A god is totally unnecessary to explain any of this, and represents a grossly, wildy, unjustified assumption." 

On the contrary, there is no other way to account for the laws of logic. 

Patently false.

1- There being a 'god' is 1 possibility.

2- There being more than 1 'god', in another possibility.

3- There not being a 'god(s)' is another possibility.

One would have to 'rule' out #'s 2 and 3 to make a strong argument for your naked assertion.

If you could accomplish that, you'd be a Nobel Prize winner, award winner author, and much too busy to be posting here.

wakawaka wrote:
  

You also said, "Yes we need to make basic assumptions about reality, but we do not need anything absolute or eternal or fixed, just adequately consistent and stable to allow us to go about our lives. "

But if the laws of logic are not absolute then why would we need to make basic assumptions in the first place?

Your question contains a summary (that is not contained in the quote), and then you ask 'why we would need to make basic assumptions?' when what you quoted already contained the answer.

Bizarre...

wakawaka wrote:
  

Furthermore you say,"It is entirely reasonable that our senses have a useful correlation with external reality, they do not need to be perfect."    Why do you assume this and how can you know for certain? 

Because it enabled us to put men on the moon.

wakawaka wrote:
 Do our senses NEED to be accurate?

No.

Obviously not.

Human 'senses' are grossly inferior to many animals.

 

wakawaka wrote:
 You said."OTOH even if there is a God, you have no way to know anything about such a being's attributes and motives. You are making stuff up."  I didnt make up the Bible, and it does give account of his attributes and motives.

The bible was written by men.

Big deal.

 

 

wakawaka wrote:
 Finally you say,"In fact, if there really were a being of such power, we could have NO certain knowledge of anything, since such a being could change all laws at any time, at a whim."        Interesting, why do you assume he would have whims? 

You missed the point.

An omnipotent god could alter the universal constants to another value, or alter the constants to be in a state of 'flux' such that no reliable predictions of outcomes could be made.

The 'Bermuda Triangle' was not 'logical' because the universal constants seemed to be absent from time to time.

 

Your admitted 'presuppositions' (these TAG type arguments and viewpoints) merely obfuscate the obvious. The 'order' that we reflect in 'logic' equations being 'true' is due to the universal constants.

Logical 'narratives' are based on empirical observations and presuppositions built on empirical observations of the natural world.

 

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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wakawaka wrote:I understand

wakawaka wrote:

I understand your definitions on the laws of logic and the role of contradiction. However, I am not questioning your definitions of the laws of logic Mr. Spence.  I am asking you how you account for them?  If they dont need to be accounted for then how can you be sure of anything?  Without accounting for these laws we are reduced to arbitrary circular assumptions.

How do I account for the fact that I can identify or associate aspects of what I observe and imagine into distinct groups? And that to think coherently about them I must not conflate one 'entity' with another when they are composed of different bits of reality? Evolution would explain why we deevlop that ability, since it is clearly useful in understanding what is happening out there, what might be signs of a predator, what might be food, ets. I don't need to 'account' for anything - I find by trial and error which rules and guidelines 'work' best. We don't need to highly certain of anything for it be useful.

Or are you asking how do I account for the observation that reality is not a formless chaos? How do you account for a God, if you insist he exists? A non-chaotic reality, ie one with at least some consistency and order would be a pre-requisite for the existence of anything non-trivial in structure, such as a God thing.

Quote:

Indeed an athiest may be quite comfortable using these immaterial laws in his naturalistic world view. Of this I have no doubt, but without account it is like a man arguing against the existance of air while breathing in to make his case.

Your example makes absolutely no sense. We are not arguing against the existence of abstract concepts, just against certain categories of them, such as those related to immaterial beings, which is really close to being a contradiction - an actual being is not an abstraction.

The existence of order and regularity, ie "Laws", seems to follow from reality being composed of a small number of types of fundamental particles, present in enormous numbers. such a reality also provides the element of randomness to drive versions of creative evolution that allow complex structures to form.

Many computer simulations show how a large number of identical elements following simple rules, such as Conway's game of "Life", can, left to themselves, genererate all kinds of interesting active structures. People have also produced self-replicating patterns. This all points to the idea that order and complex behaviour are emergent phenomena. Dennett does this in "Freedom Evolves".

No intervening intelligence required.

Even in your example, we don't have to be able to explain the existence of something to be able to use it. And a lack of a current detail explanation does not default to 'GodDidIt", since that is not an ultimate explanation unless you can explain God. And as long as we have a plausible framework for an emergent explanation, ie from something simpler, we have justification for not taking a non-emergent "explanation" seriously, with its built-in infinite regress problem.

Quote:

You said, "A god is totally unnecessary to explain any of this, and represents a grossly, wildy, unjustified assumption." 

On the contrary, there is no other way to account for the laws of logic.  Logically and initially I must posit one.  Furthermore I have found no other supernature being that will work other than the Christian God.  Perhaps you can? I would also note that your sentence is also an arbitrary assumption.

No 'being' can account for the Laws of Logic. They are derived from the fact that Reality is not purely formless and chaotic.

Quote:

You also said, "Yes we need to make basic assumptions about reality, but we do not need anything absolute or eternal or fixed, just adequately consistent and stable to allow us to go about our lives. "

But if the laws of logic are not absolute then why would we need to make basic assumptions in the first place?

Another incoherent question. Making basic assumptions is necessary starting point for any reasoning process. 'Absolutes' have nothing to do with it. I explained in what you quoted - reality merely has to be a minimal degree of consistency.

Quote:

Furthermore you say,"It is entirely reasonable that our senses have a useful correlation with external reality, they do not need to be perfect."    Why do you assume this and how can you know for certain?  Do our senses NEED to be accurate?

Again, irrelevant - we don't require certainty. You last question is again not reading what you just quoted -  they do not need to be perfect or highly accurate, merely sufficienrtly correlated with reality. Once we developed measuring instruments of all kinds, the requirement for accuracy in our physical senses dropped a lot further.

Quote:

You said."OTOH even if there is a God, you have no way to know anything about such a being's attributes and motives. You are making stuff up."  I didnt make up the Bible, and it does give account of his attributes and motives.

Someone did, and you still need to justify your assumption that whoever wrote those descriptions of what they believed to be the attributes of their imagined God had some real basis for those beliefs. The words in the Bible, of themselves, prove nothing.

Quote:

Finally you say,"In fact, if there really were a being of such power, we could have NO certain knowledge of anything, since such a being could change all laws at any time, at a whim."        Interesting, why do you assume he would have whims?  This is not a problem for me since I start with the presupposition of the Christian God who gives accounts for his nature.

I did not assume he would have whims, but you have no reason to be confident he would not.

Starting with such a presupposition is a logical fallacy, if you think it somehow gives you some certainty about what IS. All you are doing is picking one version of a belief system you have come across. Sort of like making a hypothesis, a speculation, a guess. Without actual empirical justification, it remains just that. You still need to demonstrate that it provides the best explanatory framework for what we experience in life.

In my experience over 50 years, the Bible is a massive fail. It is increasingly being shown to be highly inaccurate about claimed historical events, its moral/ethical 'rules' are mostly extremely questionable, in may cases deeply flawed. Nothing in it provides even strong evidence, let alone 'proof', of the claimed God. At best it reports a number of what were inexplicable happenings, inexplicable to the purported witnesses. Human history, right up to the present day, is replete with extraordinary claims, many of which have been shown to be now quite explicable in terms of what we now know of the failings of human senses, reasoning, and memory.

A presupposition is the LEAST certain basis for any further reasoning, in the absence of empirically verification.

Empirical reasoning does not lead to certainty about everything (apart from certain categories of statement such as "since at least one test of A has lead to B, A is not always followed by B", or "A can lead to B" ). But it does have a estimable degree of likelihood of being true, since it references reality beyond our fallible minds.

The only 'absolutes' we 'need' are the empirically determinable ones such the absolute zero of temperature,  the speed of light in a vacuum, and so on.

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

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


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To Mr. redneF & Mr.

To Mr. redneF & Mr. Spence

Mr. redneF you said: 

If there were no universal constants limiting and constraining things, no reliable predictions could be made, and the axiom 'the outcome of 'xxx' could be anything' would underpin our observations of reality.

Exactly!!  That is the whole point.  If you cannot account for the laws of logic (which are immaterial, universal and constant) then you couldnt make any reliable prediction for certain.  In fact you couldnt be certain of anything you observed including other universal constants.  You couldnt even be certain of your senses or memory.  So how does an athiest/materialist/naturalist account for something like the laws of logic that is immaterial/abstract, universal and invariant?  It is contradicition in the athiest world view.  I have yet to hear any rational answer.  What I am hearing from you and Mr. Spence, in the boiled down version, is that we use the laws of logic because they exist......arbitrary and circular.  You keep refering to universal constants, but what I am telling you is they account for nothing if you can't account for the universal constant laws of logic.  If you cant account for them why use them to reason anything?  Without accounting for them your reasoning is arbitrary and circular.

Of course the athiest will say immaterial or the abstract fits in quite well with our world view which is naturalistic. And, it is how we reason, it is how we predict and formulate new ideas and theories etc etc.  He may also say we are quite comfortable using the abstract in our world view..............Well of course you use them, and of course you are comfortable with them!! Again, this is the point.  We all do/are.  The difference is you cant account for them and so your use of the abstract is not rational.  You borrow from the Christian World view which is based on the immaterial (spirit), universal and invariant (charateristics of God) without realizing it.  It is as I said earlier in that it is a bit like a man arguing against the existence of air while at the same time breathing in air to state his case.

Knowledge is found through observation and from building one precept upon another. And if you traverse backward to the original precept you will eventually discover an "ultimate standard"  That "ultimate standard" ,since there is no other, must validate itself  or else it is reduced to arbitray circular reasoning.  The Christian God (not gods) is the only one that can do this.  I have found no other that can.  Now you may posit the flying spaghetti monster but then you just went from athiest to theist further proving my point.

You see the proof that God exists is.................. without him you couldnt know or prove anything.

Finally Mr. redneF, I shall endeavor to refrain from calling you names such as obtuse or one that has comprehension issues.

 


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Describing the christian world view

 

wakawaka wrote:

You borrow from the Christian World view which is based on the immaterial (spirit), universal and invariant (charateristics of God) without realizing it.  It is as I said earlier in that it is a bit like a man arguing against the existence of air while at the same time breathing in air to state his case.

 

as rational or logical without discarding the entire apparatus of the Bible and Koran - based as they are on totally unsupported assertions - is an act of towering inconsistency. Do you believe in the bible based solely on its own authority?

Given you are a logician of extreme profundity, waka, how do you rationalise your belief in invisible beings that exist outside this space time? Or does the 'immateriality' of concepts of logic free you up to embrace any fairy story that drifts by?

 

 

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


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wakawaka wrote:To Mr. redneF

wakawaka wrote:

To Mr. redneF & Mr. Spence

Mr. redneF you said: 

If there were no universal constants limiting and constraining things, no reliable predictions could be made, and the axiom 'the outcome of 'xxx' could be anything' would underpin our observations of reality.

Exactly!!  That is the whole point.  If you cannot account for the laws of logic (which are immaterial, universal and constant) then you couldnt make any reliable prediction for certain.  In fact you couldnt be certain of anything you observed including other universal constants.  You couldnt even be certain of your senses or memory.  So how does an athiest/materialist/naturalist account for something like the laws of logic that is immaterial/abstract, universal and invariant?"

I've given you the explanation that the universal constants are known because of the physical evidence for them. There doesn't need to be an explanation for the explanation.

In order to recognize that explanation (x) is the best, you don't need an explanation of the explanation (x).

Moreover, if the best explanation always needs an explanation, we're left with an infinite regress, which is exactly something that the Christian worldview says you cannot have.

wakawaka wrote:
What I am hearing from you and Mr. Spence, in the boiled down version, is that we use the laws of logic because they exist"

That's not what I'm saying. What I'm saying is that the only way to know if what I imagine is compatible with all of reality, is to use the benchmarks of all the reality we can test.

If you can't test what you imagine is compatible with all of reality, you can't know for sure if it's compatible with all of reality.

The reason I emphasize 'all' of reality is that you can make (what appear to be) absolutely sound, bulletproof arguments that cannot be refuted, due to insufficient knowledge of all of reality. The classic example that I like to use to prove this argument is the old axiom "What goes up must come down". This would have been one such argument that was absolutely sound for thousands and thousands of years due to insufficient knowledge.

There's no justification for assuming we have sufficient knowledge or understanding of all of reality to feel certain we really understand how the universe formed that we inhabit. If there's anyone around here who really elaborates on how much and how little knowledge we have, it's BobSpence1 and a few others.

If you do some searching on RRS, you'll also find some fantastic and elaborate essays that add even more facts that demonstrate that.

Our knowledge is expanding at a rate very analogous to Moore's Law, which is quite humorous in that it's largely in part due to the quantum leaps in supercomputers because of Moore's Law.

 

wakawaka wrote:
......arbitrary and circular.  You keep refering to universal constants, but what I am telling you is they account for nothing if you can't account for the universal constant laws of logic. 

Non sequitur.

We correctly shape our understanding based on everything we can scientifically test for certainty against the universal constants. They're the benchmarks.

They are constant. We know they're constant, not only because they're constantly predictable, and predictably constant, but we've never been able to prove that anything can escape from being limited and constrained by any or all of them.

So far, they appear to be infallible, not like our imaginations or untested 'reasonings'.

wakawaka wrote:
If you cant account for them why use them to reason anything? 

Because they're stable enough to make accurate enough predictions.

wakawaka wrote:
Without accounting for them your reasoning is arbitrary and circular.

In order to recognize that explanation (x) is the best, you don't need an explanation of the explanation (x).

wakawaka wrote:
Of course the athiest will say immaterial or the abstract fits in quite well with our world view which is naturalistic. And, it is how we reason, it is how we predict and formulate new ideas and theories etc etc.  He may also say we are quite comfortable using the abstract in our world view..............Well of course you use them, and of course you are comfortable with them!! Again, this is the point.  We all do/are.  The difference is you cant account for them and so your use of the abstract is not rational. 

It's not rational to use the most stable benchmarks as benchmarks?

Your premise is not sound, therefore your conclusion is invalid.

wakawaka wrote:
You borrow from the Christian World view...

That's a false premise. A personal worldview doesn't affect whether gravity is constant. Gravity constantly made anything I threw up in the air fall down before I'd ever heard the word 'god'. The 'truth' of gravity is due to how the force of gravity affects matter.

wakawaka wrote:
It is as I said earlier in that it is a bit like a man arguing against the existence of air while at the same time breathing in air to state his case.

That's a Platonic type argument which is a logical fallacy. Air is physical. It always was. People arguing like this centuries ago had very naive and infantile understanding of 'matter', which is the whole point many of us point out on these forums to theists.

The Platonic understanding was that 'air' was some kind of 'aether' that was completely different than water, when in fact our modern understanding is that air and water are both fluids, and they certainly didn't know either were a composite of different elements.

wakawaka wrote:
Knowledge is found through observation...

Only evidence that can be falsified by testing can be justifiably called 'correct knowledge'. Everything else is speculation.

wakawaka wrote:
And if you traverse backward to the original precept you will eventually discover an "ultimate standard"

You've just made a premise that can't be falsified. IOW, you've shared your opinion and nothing more.

wakawaka wrote:
That "ultimate standard" ,since there is no other, must validate itself  or else it is reduced to arbitray circular reasoning.  The Christian God (not gods) is the only one that can do this. 

That's a naked assertion, that cannot be falsified, as well.

There could be, for example some kind of superior extraterrestrial race somewhere, one of which had mislead a bunch of ignorant sheepherders in the Middle East thousands of years ago into not only believing that it was this 'eternal immaterial god outside of space and time' that created the universe, when it did nothing of the sort, but was a 'mortal' creature like you and I, and has been deader than a doornail for millenia.

According to a certain theorem of Modal Logic, if I can imagine it, it can be true.

I can imagine an endless list of things, that are incompatible with the Christian worldview. You could too, if you tried.

wakawaka wrote:
I have found no other that can.

That's the Argument from Incredulity, which is invalid as an argument or justification for your conclusions. 

wakawaka wrote:
You see the proof that God exists is.................. without him you couldnt know or prove anything.  

That's not a proof. That's an assertion and self refuting.

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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All we need is a reality

All we need is a reality with a minmal level of consistent 'laws' or attriibutes, to be able to derive by observation the basics of coherent discourse, ie 'logic' of some form.

A God-style being would be just as dependent on reality having some basic stability and consistent attributes for it to exist. To claim 'God' as necessary for reality to have the basic properties necessary for His own existence is true circular fallacy. Yet another version of the fallacy of claiming God as necessary to create reality - not answering what created Him? Or the fallacy of the ontological argument claiming that everything needs a 'cause' and then positing a being that doesn't need a cause.

That basic level of order is the minimum requirement for a complex reality to emerge.

Claiming an 'absolute' of some form as a necessity for meaningful 'knowledge' is a total non-sequiter. The fallacy-ridden nature of your arguments are far stronger proof of their error than your naked claim that our ability to reason proves God.

On what absolute do you base your judgement of what is the 'absolute' we need for knowledge? Proof you have no basis for your 'knowledge'.

You have either an infinite regress or pure circularity by that approach. That is the failure of the medieval approach, which has been incorporated into follies such as Theology.

Whereas all we need for useful, practical, knowledge is that reality have some stability, soem consistency, which we can identify by trial-and-error, and build from there by taking our basic criterion for acceptable level of 'truth' to be the degree of consistency any new proposition has with everything else we have already identified.

Have you heard of 'iteration'? It is a repetitive process which can lead to a progressive refinement of knowledge, and the process of observation, hypothesis formulation, testing by new observations and or experiment, leading to confirmation of a successful hypothesis as a new theory, suggesting new areas to investigate and observe, and around we go again. 

We need to be able to detect when we are stuck in a possible blind alley, with progress stalled, in the circularity you allude to, suggesting it is time to step back and re-examine our assumptions, try different ideas. It's called a 'paradigm shift'. IOW, it is detectable and addressable, not an ultimate problem for empirical reasoning.

This process is completely incompatible with the idea of absolute knowledge, which is not to be confused with empirically discovered physical constants of nature.

We should be prepared to re-examine all our assumptions, including possible refinements of the 'laws' of logic. Which we have effectively done in going on to put inductive reasoning and probability-based arguments on a firm and rigorous footing, with the help of tools such as Bayes Theorem.

 

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

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


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Mr. Rednef you have

Mr. Rednef you have said:

"I've given you the explanation that the universal constants are known because of the physical evidence for them. There doesn't need to be an explanation for the explanation.

In order to recognize that explanation (x) is the best, you don't need an explanation of the explanation (x).

Moreover, if the best explanation always needs an explanation, we're left with an infinite regress, which is exactly something that the Christian worldview says you cannot have."

Again, you cannot posit any physical evidence, constants, laws, theorems etc without accounting for the preconditions of intelligibiltiy (the laws of logic).  If you dont have reason for your knowledge then you cannot be certain of your knowledge and your knowledge is arbitrary. Therefore some sort of ultimate explanation is required.  It is not an infinite regress that is reached but an ultimate standard as stated earlier.  Furthermore, it is incumbant upon that ultimate standard to account for itself.

You also say:

"That's not what I'm saying. What I'm saying is that the only way to know if what I imagine is compatible with all of reality, is to use the benchmarks of all the reality we can test.

If you can't test what you imagine is compatible with all of reality, you can't know for sure if it's compatible with all of reality"

I think your misunderstanding what I am saying.  The point is it doesnt matter what or how much you test to see what is compatible with reality.  It doesnt matter what you test, observe, remember, see or even think you know if you cant account for the preconditions of intelligibility.  

 

next you say:

We correctly shape our understanding based on everything we can scientifically test for certainty against the universal constants. They're the benchmarks.

They are constant. We know they're constant, not only because they're constantly predictable, and predictably constant, but we've never been able to prove that anything can escape from being limited and constrained by any or all of them.

So far, they appear to be infallible, not like our imaginations or untested 'reasonings'.

And how do you account for the universal constants of the laws of logic and the uniformity of nature??  Just because you say "so far" is not proof that it will happen in the future. You take for granted the uniformity of nature and the laws of logic.  You use and live by them everyday.  We have no choice in the matter.  You may say we dont need to account for them, but knowledge without reason is arbitrary and so you cant be certain of anything given the atheist world view.  You use the laws of logic and the uniformity of nature but you cant explain / account for them.  They are as Mr. Spence said immaterial and goes against the materialistic atheist worldview.

you say:    Because they're stable enough to make accurate enough predictions

Again, predictions are meaningless and arbitrary without accounting for the preconditions of intelligibilty.

 

you say:   

In order to recognize that explanation (x) is the best, you don't need an explanation of the explanation (x).      Again, without reason for your explanation or ulitmate standard there is no certainty of knowledge.  Also, an ultimate standard is the opposite of an infinite regress.

 

You said:

It's not rational to use the most stable benchmarks as benchmarks?    Not if you cant account for the laws of logic.  Why?  Because otherwise all knowedge (this includes benchmarks) is arbitrary.

Your premise is not sound, therefore your conclusion is invalid.       

 

You said:

That's a false premise. A personal worldview doesn't affect whether gravity is constant. Gravity constantly made anything I threw up in the air fall down before I'd ever heard the word 'god'. The 'truth' of gravity is due to how the force of gravity affects matter

You are incorrect, a world view absolutley affects how we interpret the same evidence.  The question is which worldview best accounts for those interpretations?

 

You said:

That's a Platonic type argument which is a logical fallacy. Air is physical. It always was. People arguing like this centuries ago had very naive and infantile understanding of 'matter', which is the whole point many of us point out on these forums to theists.

The Platonic understanding was that 'air' was some kind of 'aether' that was completely different than water, when in fact our modern understanding is that air and water are both fluids, and they certainly didn't know either were a composite of different elements.

You miss the point entirely.  You use the laws of logic and other preconditions of intelligibilty but you cant account for them inside your worldview.  You use these tools without knowing how you got them.  Therefore my analogy is spot on.

you said:  Only evidence that can be falsified by testing can be justifiably called 'correct knowledge'. Everything else is speculation 

Are you saying that which is false is correct?  Are you absolutely sure?

 

you said:   You've just made a premise that can't be falsified. IOW, you've shared your opinion and nothing more 

If it cant be falsified it must be true and opinion doesnt really matter.

 

You said:

That's a naked assertion, that cannot be falsified, as well.

There could be, for example some kind of superior extraterrestrial race somewhere, one of which had mislead a bunch of ignorant sheepherders in the Middle East thousands of years ago into not only believing that it was this 'eternal immaterial god outside of space and time' that created the universe, when it did nothing of the sort, but was a 'mortal' creature like you and I, and has been deader than a doornail for millenia.

According to a certain theorem of Modal Logic, if I can imagine it, it can be true.

I can imagine an endless list of things, that are incompatible with the Christian worldview. You could too, if you tried.

You can take any ultimate standard of religon you like, be it extra terrestrial, hinduism, budahism etc etc.  You can posit the flying speghetti monster too. With a little research you will see they cant account for the laws of logic.  Only the Christian God can.

 


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'Accounting for the Laws of

'Accounting for the Laws of Logic" only requires trial-and-error to establish what basic assumptions are needed to lead to consistent statements.

The fact that Reality as perceived lends itself to being able to identify different objects reasonably consistently, and that if we assume that A both exists and doesn't exist at the same time, we are lead to clearly erroneous conclusions, has zero dependence on whether or not an imagined supernatural exists or not. 

In fact the existence of any coherent non-trivial entity would itself be dependent on a Reality which was sufficiently ordered to allow the Laws of Logic to be applied to it.

God is a primitive, illogical, superstition.

 

 

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

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MR Spence you say

MR Spence you say that:'

Accounting for the Laws of Logic" only requires trial-and-error to establish what basic assumptions are needed to lead to consistent statements

No, this is fallacy. Methods of trial and error, assumptions etc. are byproducts of the laws of logic they do not account for them.  The methods themselves by which we test for certainty are products of reasoning which is accounted for by the laws of logic.  What I am asking you is how you account for the laws themselves.  

Futhermore you state:

The fact that Reality as perceived lends itself to being able to identify different objects reasonably consistently, and that if we assume that A both exists and doesn't exist at the same time, we are lead to clearly erroneous conclusions, has zero dependence on whether or not an imagined supernatural exists or not.

You cannot with certainty depend on any fact of reality without accounting for the laws.  You must have reason for knowedge in order that your argument not be reduced to circular absudity.  Furthermore, given the athiest worldview and not accounting for the laws of logic, what would be wrong with contradiction??  If you cant account for the laws of logic then A and -A simultaneously is not an issue, that is to say contradiction should not be a problem for such a worldview.  My curiosity gets the better of me sir, if you dont believe in the existence of the supernatural how then can you beleive in the laws of logic which are supernatural?  

 

 

 


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wakawaka wrote:MR Spence you

wakawaka wrote:

MR Spence you say that:'

Accounting for the Laws of Logic" only requires trial-and-error to establish what basic assumptions are needed to lead to consistent statements

No, this is fallacy. Methods of trial and error, assumptions etc. are byproducts of the laws of logic they do not account for them.  The methods themselves by which we test for certainty are products of reasoning which is accounted for by the laws of logic.  What I am asking you is how you account for the laws themselves.  

No, you are the one with the fallacies.

We don't "test for certainty", we look for a degree of correlation, consistency, with all the other observations available to us. Reasoning is NOT "accounted for by the laws of logic". The Laws of Logic, as expressed are simply descriptions of the absolute minimum requirements to be able to discuss anything coherenly. Namely, that there are identifiably distinct entities in what we observe, which persist with sufficient stability to be registered in our memory as such, and be compared with other entities in our mind, and that there is a clear problem if our reasoning comes up with contradicting conclusions.

The Law of Identity only requires that the Universe not be either a total chaos or a uniform featureless fog. That is all taht is needed to account for that one.

The Law of Non-Contradiction becomes quickly obvious as soon as you try any kind of manipulation of data to draw some conclusion. That is all that is required to account for it. Reasoning does not actually depend on either, informal reasoning is simply associative, it doesn't really use logic as a discipline.

Quote:

Futhermore you state:

 

The fact that Reality as perceived lends itself to being able to identify different objects reasonably consistently, and that if we assume that A both exists and doesn't exist at the same time, we are lead to clearly erroneous conclusions, has zero dependence on whether or not an imagined supernatural exists or not.

You cannot with certainty depend on any fact of reality without accounting for the laws.  You must have reason for knowedge in order that your argument not be reduced to circular absudity.  Furthermore, given the athiest worldview and not accounting for the laws of logic, what would be wrong with contradiction??  If you cant account for the laws of logic then A and -A simultaneously is not an issue, that is to say contradiction should not be a problem for such a worldview.  My curiosity gets the better of me sir, if you dont believe in the existence of the supernatural how then can you beleive in the laws of logic which are supernatural?  

 

We don't require total certainty, merely degrees of correlation, of likelihood, of 'best fit' explanations. 

Accepting contradictions would make no sense. It would prevent any coherent conclusion. It does not need rocket science or theology to see this.

If your reasoning is showing that either of two mutually incompatible conclusions could be true, we don't need metaphysics or formal logic to realize we need more data, and to conclude simply that we have no basis on which to decide in the absence of more information.

Your argument itself depends on that simple observation.

The Laws of Logic are human formulations which encode the fundamental experience of trying to deduce conclusions from our observations.

The existence of a supernatural all-powerful entity would negate any confidence in any conclusions, since such an entity would be inherently beyond our comprehension, its ultimate motives and intent utterly inscrutable to us, able to completely change ALL 'laws' at its whim. We could have no ultimate certainty that any Laws would hold.

Only a reality in which some minimum basic coherence ant structure could support a complex universe. That implies the Laws of Logic.

Laws of such kind, and the Laws of Physics, only make sense as based on the fundamental structure of reality, not the existence or pronouncements of a magic being.

They are completely unlike human laws, which are promulgated to regulate society, which are the pronouncements of Authority. Theism seems to conflate these two very different kindo 'Law'. Legailstic law can be flouted, ignored.

Existential Laws cannot be so ignored. I cannot ignore the Law of Gravity. Having an argument lead to a contradiction immediately and incontrovertibly falsifies it. It is immediately obvious, at a level way more fundamental than 'reasoning', that I cannot simultaneously travel down two separate pathways.

Circularity and contradiction are directly observable problems when they crop up in any argument. They are not in any way dependent on anything outside the context.

FWIW, the traditional arguments claimed to 'prove' God are the biggest offenders against logical principles, because strict application of logic destroys their coherence, into circularity, infinite regress, naked assertions, etc.

It takes a deep commitment to belief in God above reason to 'justify' and devise special modes of logic and assumptions to skirt around the fundamental problems of Theology.

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

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

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Since when are concepts

 

wakawaka wrote:

My curiosity gets the better of me sir, if you dont believe in the existence of the supernatural how then can you beleive in the laws of logic which are supernatural?  

 

derived from the human brain's interaction with the consistent and stable material universe we can perceive considered to be supernatural? What is supernatural waka? Could you explain its existence using some empirical measurement or will you admit your naked assertion? How can you at once demand consistency of reasoning and then base your 'reasoning' on a fallacious appeal to the unknown? Your standards of evidence are clearly open to question. Exactly what is it you are claiming human logic is based on? Define this concrete unknowable. 

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


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We can 'account for' the

We can 'account for' the Laws of Logic.

Far more simply than your task, wkawaka, which would next be to 'account for' God.

 

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

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

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wakawaka wrote:MR Spence you

wakawaka wrote:

MR Spence you say that:'

Accounting for the Laws of Logic" only requires trial-and-error to establish what basic assumptions are needed to lead to consistent statements

No, this is fallacy. Methods of trial and error, assumptions etc. are byproducts of the laws of logic they do not account for them.  The methods themselves by which we test for certainty are products of reasoning which is accounted for by the laws of logic.  What I am asking you is how you account for the laws themselves.  

Perhaps you can start by providing an example of a law you need us to account for.  

wakawaka wrote:

Futhermore you state:

The fact that Reality as perceived lends itself to being able to identify different objects reasonably consistently, and that if we assume that A both exists and doesn't exist at the same time, we are lead to clearly erroneous conclusions, has zero dependence on whether or not an imagined supernatural exists or not.

You cannot with certainty depend on any fact of reality without accounting for the laws.  You must have reason for knowedge in order that your argument not be reduced to circular absudity.  Furthermore, given the athiest worldview and not accounting for the laws of logic, what would be wrong with contradiction??  If you cant account for the laws of logic then A and -A simultaneously is not an issue, that is to say contradiction should not be a problem for such a worldview.  My curiosity gets the better of me sir, if you dont believe in the existence of the supernatural how then can you beleive in the laws of logic which are supernatural?  

You mention certainty and fact as though they were objective terms.  Again, please provide us with an ABSOLUTE fact, or ABSOLUTE knowledge relative to anything.  Excluding "Cogito ergo sum", there is no such thing as absolute knowledge, you can only achieve degrees of certainty.  Also, it has been explained countlessly how the laws of logic are a fundamental description of the natural, to state that they are supernatural, you must first define what supernatural is.  In other words, if the laws of logic are not fundamentally of the natural (or physical world, you prefer material because it subtly implies a perceived negative moral paradigm), then of what stuff are they made of?

All you are presenting are vague questions with uncertain terminology.  Please define what you are asking, and you may get better fitted answers.

"Don't seek these laws to understand. Only the mad can comprehend..." -- George Cosbuc


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Mr. Spence you said:All we

Mr. Spence you said:

All we need is a reality with a minmal level of consistent 'laws' or attriibutes, to be able to derive by observation the basics of coherent discourse, ie 'logic' of some form.

First account for those laws then derive.

You also state:

A God-style being would be just as dependent on reality having some basic stability and consistent attributes for it to exist. To claim 'God' as necessary for reality to have the basic properties necessary for His own existence is true circular fallacy. Yet another version of the fallacy of claiming God as necessary to create reality - not answering what created Him? Or the fallacy of the ontological argument claiming that everything needs a 'cause' and then positing a being that doesn't need a cause.

That basic level of order is the minimum requirement for a complex reality to emerge.

Claiming an 'absolute' of some form as a necessity for meaningful 'knowledge' is a total non-sequiter. The fallacy-ridden nature of your arguments are far stronger proof of their error than your naked claim that our ability to reason proves God.

On what absolute do you base your judgement of what is the 'absolute' we need for knowledge? Proof you have no basis for your 'knowledge'.

You have either an infinite regress or pure circularity by that approach. That is the failure of the medieval approach, which has been incorporated into follies such as Theology

Eventually Mr. Spence all arguments reduce to a form of circularity.  z happens because of y which is caused by x due to w and so forth until we reach our ultimate authority or standard A.  Both sides must contend with this.  But once we reach point A, because it is an ultimate standard, you are simply left with no where else to go.  Nothing precedes it or else it wouldnt be an ultimate standard.  It is at this point that the ultimate standard must attest to itself.  Otherwise the circular argument reaches absudity.  There is no infinte regression nor have I made any such claims.

Then you say:

Whereas all we need for useful, practical, knowledge is that reality have some stability, soem consistency, which we can identify by trial-and-error, and build from there by taking our basic criterion for acceptable level of 'truth' to be the degree of consistency any new proposition has with everything else we have already identified.

The uniformity of nature argument is well known and a precondition of intelligibilty. We live our lives without giving thought to the uniformity of nature yet without it science is not possible. We all succumb to it without choice. By what rational can you say that tomorrow will be like yesterday and how do account for these laws?

 


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 Wakawaka,As your system of

 Wakawaka,

As your system of logic includes magic, can anyone describe a  real system of logic to you?

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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But Wakawaka

 

wakawaka wrote:

 

The uniformity of nature argument is well known and a precondition of intelligibilty. We live our lives without giving thought to the uniformity of nature yet without it science is not possible. We all succumb to it without choice. By what rational can you say that tomorrow will be like yesterday and how do account for these laws?

 

 

There is no uniformity of nature that conforms always to a universal law. There is only an expectation that a past observation that led to an association between 2 things will occur again in the future. But there is no way we can judge that such things will always be the way they are and thus there is no absolute certainty that could be ascribed to a universal law. For that you'd have to know all the futures and this cannot be. Instead we have expectations based on the past. What you are doing by insisting there is a universal law underpinning the nature of all human reasoning is assuming your question is proven.  

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


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I do not need to 'account

I do not need to 'account for' those primal laws, which probably simply reflect some fundamental and simple regularity at the lowest level of existence.

Once identified by empirical research, we move on to apply them to help us better understand the way 'higher' levels of reality function, which allows us make better predictions of how novel configurations will behave,, and the possible ways we may use this understanding to develop new technologies.

By 'higher' I really mean much more complex assemblages of the elementary 'nuts-and-bolts' of the 'lower' level explanatory framework, or 'model' of reality. Such complex assemblages, such as large molecules composed ultimately of quarks and leptons,  or electrons, protons, and neutrons, or atoms, whatever level you wish, display 'laws', or regularities of behaviour, which cannot be easily explained in terms of the laws we have identified as describing the attributes and behaviour of fundamental particles.

It is only your conviction that until we have an 'absolute' or 'ultimate' explanation that we cannot claim to have real knowledge or understanding, that founders in circularity or infinite regress, as you cannot 'account for' your ultimate foundation of reality, or even know when you have reached it.

The 'uniformity of nature' is also a futile and irrelevant concept.

Science has continued to provide an ever more powerful framework allowing us to understand how things are interrelated, how things are likely to progress in future.

Every time we have encountered an inconsistency, which is just how any non-uniformity would manifest, we dig deeper and have so far uncovered a deeper level of reality, which itself explains the anomaly, while itself being 'uniform', ie fitting into a mathematical descriptionWe .

We have no reason, from the long and successful growth of science and technology, to worry about the possible 'non-uniformity' of nature until we see it.

We do not 'know' that tomorrow will be like today, but since it appears that 5 trillion yesterdays have been like today, it is an entirely reasonable working assumption.

And I see you have yet to 'account for' God, so don't be such an effing hypocrite - you are in a vastly weaker epistemological position than I am.

 

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

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


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wakawaka wrote: ... you

wakawaka wrote:
... you cannot posit any physical evidence, constants, laws, theorems etc without accounting for the preconditions of intelligibiltiy (the laws of logic).

Can you explain why you think that is?

This is like arguing that you cannot define a triangle having 3 sides unless you can 'account' for it.

wakawaka wrote:
If you dont have reason for your knowledge then you cannot be certain of your knowledge and yourknowledge is arbitrary.


What constitues 'having reason' in your opinion?
Are you basing these arguments of yours on the TAG argument? Like the law of indentity?
Isn't the law of identity the sound conclusion of what the argument for 'a' is?
Are you trying to say simply defining 'a' as not anything but 'a' is not 'rational' unless we can explain why that should be considered the best way of distinguishing 'a' as itself?

wakawaka wrote:
Therefore some sort of ultimate explanation is required.

An explanation of the explanation is required, according to you?
wakawaka wrote:
It is not an infinite regress that is reached but an ultimate standard as stated earlier.

How do you know this is the case? Are you claiming that we reach a point where there can be no more questions asked, or no more explanations that can be given?
wakawaka wrote:
  Furthermore, it is incumbant upon that ultimate standard to account for itself.

Are you asserting that the law of identity is contingent, instead of necessarily so?
Is the reason why 'a' is 'a' and not 'not a' contingent instead of necessarily so?

wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:
"That's not what I'm saying. What I'm saying is that the only way to know if what I imagine is compatible with all

of reality, is to use the benchmarks of all the reality we can test.

If you can't test what you imagine is compatible with all of reality, you can't know for sure if it's compatible with all of reality"


I think your misunderstanding what I am saying.  The point is it doesnt matter what or how much you test to see what is

compatible with reality.


I don't know how you think we got to this level of science and technology then, but I'm interested to hear how you claim we did.


wakawaka wrote:
It doesnt matter what you test, observe, remember, see or even think you know if you cant account for the preconditions of intelligibility.

The preconditions are in how we distinguish 1 thing from another. It isn't difficult. We label things and isolate them from each other so as not to mix them up. We do it everyday.

That's how we preserve 'identities'.


In your estimation, are the 'preconditions of intelligibility' just another way of labelling the law of identity and the law of non contradiction? Because I don't even know what you're talking about , nor do I think you know what you're talking about when you say that nothing we test, observe remember of see matters if we can't account for the laws of 'logic'.
These 'tests, observations etc, etc, matter 'plenty' in the context of 'for all intents and purposes'.

wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:
We correctly shape our understanding based on everything we can scientifically test for certainty against the universal constants. They're the benchmarks.

They are constant. We know they're constant, not only because they're constantly predictable, and predictably constant, but we've never been able to prove that anything can escape from being limited and constrained by any or all of them.

So far, they appear to be infallible, not like our imaginations or untested 'reasonings'.


And how do you account for the universal constants of the laws of logic and the uniformity of nature??


It appears that you're claiming that if something (a) cannot be attributed to something else (b) then (a) isn't useful, or worth considering. If that's what you're arguing, then I'd say the levels of science and technology we've achieved prove otherwise, using 'universal constants' that we can't attribute to something, or 'account for'.


wakawaka wrote:
Just because you say "so far" is not proof that it will happen in the future.

I never argued that we won't find out that our observations were flawed, or innacurate. The salient point is that for 'all intents and purposes' they are accurate enough to make incredibly reliable predictions, and there's no reason to throw the baby out with thebath water in our methodology, because in practice our methods not only produce very strong yields, but they lead to better future methods. There's a strong 'snowball' effect, even when we find out we were wrong, it teaches us how to avoid errors in calculations and predictions by not repeating flaws in procedure.


wakawaka wrote:
You take for granted the uniformity of nature and the laws of logic.

Justifyibly so. We engineer and build things based on the stability and uniform nature of our reality. But that 'uniformity and stability' is not always linear and predictable. It has to be mapped out by testing, and which lead to complex equations needed to reconcile and properly scale how 'nature' behaves. The one place where this is very evident is in fluid dynamics. I've seen engineers and pilots who have lots of formal training in principles of flight arguing on forums that a bumble bee's flight defies the laws of physics, when it doesn't actually.

wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:
In order to recognize that explanation (x) is the best, you don't need an explanation of the explanation (x).

Again, without reason for your explanation or ulitmate standard there is no certainty of knowledge.


At this point, you're just droning on and on, and I don't think you even understood my statement.
You talked right past the statement of mine that you quoted. If you disagree with what I stated, explain why it's fallacious, instead of talking right past it.
 

wakawaka wrote:
You may say we dont need to account for them, but knowledge without reason is arbitrary...

I never argued for a knowledge without 'reason'. You're strawmanning. I explained that our degrees of certainty and accuracy are sufficient for 'all intents and purposes' because of how they're applicable. Just because things can fluctuate or deviate to varying degrees does not prevent us from 'knowing' things, or justifying why we adhere to determination levels of what we consider 'certainty', 'perfection', or 'absolute'.
Machinist blocks are considered 'absolutely, perfectly flat'. They are ground so flat and smooth that when you place one on top of another you can lift both of them by lifting the top one because of the vacuum between them. That far exceeds my personal needs for 'absolutely, perfectly flat', and I'm in aerospace level engineering.

wakawaka wrote:
...and so you cant be certain of anything given the atheist world view.

1- Even if that were the case, it wouldn't matter to me. It's not a personal requirement of mine.
2-You haven't given an argument to support your assertion that demonstrates why I (or anyone) should believe what you say is true, or why anybody should concern themselves with this 'truth' even if it were true.


wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:
It's not rational to use the most stable benchmarks as benchmarks?

 Not if you cant account for the laws of logic.

Wrong. Necessity dictates that it's not practical to use anything but the most stable platform to build from.


wakawaka wrote:
Why?  Because otherwise all knowedge (this includes benchmarks) is arbitrary.

No. Knowledge is relative. Measurements are relative. It's relative to sample rate, bit depth, and non linearities, to use 'binary' terminology. By this token, everything we 'build', beit knowledge, or an aircraft, is based on a limited sample rate and bit depth.

This is how we function in our day to day lives, and the evidence of our level of science and technology at present demonstrates that in many instances we can eschew many 'bits' of knowledge and accuracy without sacrificing degrees of 'certainty'.
There used to be a saying in the aviation industry that once the drawings and plans for an aircraft weighed as much as the aircraft, it was good enough to fly. So, I don't think many people in this world would even give you half as much of an ear for your philosophical arguments as you are getting here. The only reason I even debate these kinds of obsessive compulsive thought experiments is to demonstrate how utterly absurd and impractical it is to waste the energy to extend arguments to these extremes.


wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:

That's a false premise. A personal worldview doesn't affect whether gravity is constant. Gravity constantly made anything I threw up in the air fall down before I'd ever heard the word 'god'. The 'truth' of gravity is due to how the force of gravity affects matter


You are incorrect, a world view absolutley affects how we interpret the same evidence.


You're strawmanning. Gravity is not constant because of 'worldviews'. It is constant according to the timescales that we've been observing it, and to the accuracy of our instruments used to measure it.
The 'truth' of gravity is the force that it exerts upon particles. We measure it with instruments.
Instruments that detect and measure do not have a worldview.


wakawaka wrote:
  The question is which worldview best accounts for those interpretations?

That's an opinion. Not a fact.
So is the notion that 'logic supersedes science', which is why you don't see many 'help wanted' ads for philosophers.


wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:
That's a Platonic type argument which is a logical fallacy. Air is physical. It always was. People arguing like this centuries ago had very naive and infantile understanding of 'matter', which is the whole point many of us point out on these forums to theists.

The Platonic understanding was that 'air' was some kind of 'aether' that was completely different than water, when in fact our modern understanding is that air and water are both fluids, and they certainly didn't know either were a composite of different elements.

You miss the point entirely.  You use the laws of logic and other preconditions of intelligibilty but you cant account for them inside your worldview.


Even if that were the case, my response would be 'And??'
And what?

This is the 'wrong' method?


I understand what you're claiming. I simply see no reason to feel the same way you do about it. You have this notion that I should 'account' for them, and my question is why do you feel that that is the case?
I have yet to see you do anything but assert the laws of logic are something that we should agree to personally desire to account for.
If you think it's something you can argue, then be my guest. If you're just going to keep going in circles and asserting that it's not 'rational' to not account for them, it's because you can't make a sound argument for why it's not 'rational'.

wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:
Only evidence that can be falsified by testing can be justifiably called 'correct knowledge'. Everything else is

speculation


Are you saying that which is false is correct?

No. If I meant that, I would have stated that.

wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:
  You've just made a premise that can't be falsified. IOW, you've shared your opinion and nothing more


If it cant be falsified it must be true and opinion doesnt really matter.


With that kind of a low standard for accuracy, I'd be inclined to believe every claim that I couldn't test for accuracy. That wouldn't be practical, it would be moronic. You'd be operating at the same level as a person with a severe mental handicap.

wakawaka wrote:

redneF wrote:
  According to a certain theorem of Modal Logic, if I can imagine it, it can be true.

I can imagine an endless list of things, that are incompatible with the Christian worldview. You could too, if you tried.


You can take any ultimate standard of religon you like, be it extra terrestrial, hinduism, budahism etc etc.  You can posit the flying speghetti monster too. With a little research you will see they cant account for the laws of logic.

What specifically would I need to 'research'. Do you mean there is 'data' to evaluate? 

wakawaka wrote:
Only the Christian God can.

How so?
Are you going to attempt to get behind Matt Slick's TAG argument to back your claim?
If so, can your god make 'a' be 'a' and 'not a' at that same time and in the same way? And if he cannot, why is he limited and constrained in such a way that he cannot 'redefine' things without any problems?

wakawaka wrote:
Eventually Mr. Spence all arguments reduce to a form of circularity....

And?
Is it your contention that this simply cannot be the case in reality?

wakawaka wrote:
...  z happens because of y which is caused by x due to w and so forth until we reach our ultimate authority or standard A.  Both sides must contend with this.  But once we reach point A, because it is an ultimate standard, you are simply left with no where else to go.  Nothing precedes it or else it wouldnt be an ultimate standard.  It is at this point that the ultimate standard must attest to itself.  Otherwise the circular argument reaches absudity.  There is no infinte regression nor have I made any such claims.


So, are you going to attempt the simple ad hoc claim that a causal loop cannot exist as an argument that everything is derived from an uncaused 'causer', and then claim that that in and of itself is not an absurd?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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Lol. I was wondering why

Lol. I was wondering why this topic of evidence of theist self deception was still going since the OP gave up and left in a huff.
Bob and red, you guys are ripping this guys arguments apart so thoroughly that adding to the conversation is pointless.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


redneF
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Vastet wrote:Lol. I was

Vastet wrote:
Lol. I was wondering why this topic of evidence of theist self deception was still going since the OP gave up and left in a huff. Bob and red, you guys are ripping this guys arguments apart so thoroughly that adding to the conversation is pointless.

Wakawaka sounds like a Matt Slick disciple who's bought his TAG argument hook, line, and sinker.

If you've never read his TAG drivel, it's a 'must' read. Calling it pseudo intellectual would be insulting to pseudo intellectuals.

His treatise on why something is what it is, and why it's not what it is not, or why it's not something in between what it is and what it is not (AKA Logical Absolutes) is pure POE material.

It's like reading a child's diary about his mental struggle with trying to reconcile how one thing is not some other thing...

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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Philosopher gives me a

Philosopher gives me a definition of knowledge.  This definition references the word "ture."

I ask philosopher for a definition of the word "true."  He references the properties used by the rules of logic.  By definition, a tautology is true because "true" gets its definition from logic (for the philosopher).

I show statement is a tautology and thus claim it is knowledge

Postmodernist says "but how do we know that logic leads to truth?"

I say wtf?  That's how the philosopher friggin defined "true."

 

If you give me sufficient and necessary conditions for a statement to be true, then I'll tell what statements are or are not true.  If you then say I don't have knowledge, you're moving the goalposts.  You set them, I met them, then you moved them and stuck your tongue out saying "nyah nyah, you can't show it's true."  Stop playing silly games.

Questions for Theists:
http://silverskeptic.blogspot.com/2011/03/consistent-standards.html

I'm a bit of a lurker. Every now and then I will come out of my cave with a flurry of activity. Then the Ph.D. program calls and I must fall back to the shadows.


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Wow, this is the frist time

Wow, this is the frist time I've visited this forum in ages and this topic almost made me late for work!

Great work BobSpence and RedneF.   I dunno how much simpler you can explain yourselves and still not be understood.   I'm no expert in logic and you've pretty much nailed that anyway I'd just like to chuck in a little bit about what Wakawaka said regarding the following:

Wakawaka wrote:

you said:  Only evidence that can be falsified by testing can be justifiably called 'correct knowledge'. Everything else is speculation 

Are you saying that which is false is correct?  Are you absolutely sure?

Falsifiability and the attribute of 'falsness' are not one in the same thing.   The principle of falsifiability merely allows the possibility that a given statement can conceivably be proved false under certain circumstances.   Thus, the statement "There is no God" is easily falsifiable by producing said God.  The statement "There is a God" is unfalsifiable because as many examples as you can provide for there not being a God there can always be the response that you're not looking in the right place/way/whatever.   These are examples of singular existential statements regarding a particular thing.

 

There are also universal statements about whole categories of thing such as "all swans are white" or "all objects attract each other with a force proportional to their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between them".   Such statements for the basis for most scientific investigation as they can easily be falsified by simple observation.  e.g. we know now that the statement about swans is false due to the discovery of black swans in Australia.   Statements such as the second, and most other scientific 'Laws' continue to be useful to us precisely becuase no observation has been made that renders them false, although it is conceivable that situations could arise in which they are shown to be so.    In which case the 'Law' is refined or modified or thrown out altogether and a new, more accurate 'Law' is used in its place.   This kind of thing happens a lot and is one of the wonders of the scientific method.   You only have to look at the history books to see some of the theories that were once held to be 'universally true' that we now know were wrong - think flat Earth, geocentricity, phlogiston, ether, etc.   What we call 'universal laws' are merely those that appear to make the best predictions over the widest range of conditions that we have yet experienced.   Likewise, 'universal constants' are just those that we've so far measured to be constant at every place in the observable universe although there are some that believe that these laws and constants do not hold for certain conditions such as black holes and the very early universe.

 

One tiny OT comment to make as well to Rednef:

RedneF wrote:
Machinist blocks are considered 'absolutely, perfectly flat'. They are ground so flat and smooth that when you place one on top of another you can lift both of them by lifting the top one because of the vacuum between them.

I thought that was due to the van der Waal's forces of attraction acting between the atoms in the two blocks as they are brought so close together.  It's the same principle as Gecko's feet and blu-tack.   There simply isn;t room for anything between them, even vacuum. 

"The World is my country, science my religion" - Christiaan Huygens


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Are you saved? The reason I ask is because you seem to be very i

snafu wrote:

Wowm. 

 


 


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Are you saved? The reason I ask is because you seem to be very i

snafu wrote:

Wowm. 

 

Are you saved? The reason I ask is because you seem to be very ignorant. So that leads me to believe that you really have no understanding of the Lord. To someone who believes the Lord well enough to tell you about the free gift you can receive, called SALVATION. Salvation is the only way you will enter the kingdom of heaven. You have to believe with all your heart that God sacrificed his only begotten Son Jesus Christ for all our sins. You also must believe that Jesus died on the cross, was buried and resurrected in 3 days. I will pray for you that you allow yourself this gift and become a true Christian in the army of the Lord. If you choose to remain ignorant lost soul, enjoy your life in hell

 

 

JESUS IS LOVE


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TRUECRISTIAN wrote: Are you

TRUECRISTIAN wrote:

 Are you saved? The reason I ask is because you seem to be very ignorant. So that leads me to believe that you really have no understanding of the Lord. To someone who believes the Lord well enough to tell you about the free gift you can receive, called SALVATION. Salvation is the only way you will enter the kingdom of heaven. You have to believe with all your heart that God sacrificed his only begotten Son Jesus Christ for all our sins. You also must believe that Jesus died on the cross, was buried and resurrected in 3 days. I will pray for you that you allow yourself this gift and become a true Christian in the army of the Lord. If you choose to remain ignorant lost soul, enjoy your life in hell

:facepalm:

I don't have do anything you say thankyouverymuch.   If heaven's going to be full of people like you then I'm sure I will be much happier wherever you are not. 

"The World is my country, science my religion" - Christiaan Huygens


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TRUECRISTIAN wrote: Are you

TRUECRISTIAN wrote:

 Are you saved? The reason I ask is because you seem to be very ignorant. So that leads me to believe that you really have no understanding of the Lord. To someone who believes the Lord well enough to tell you about the free gift you can receive, called SALVATION. Salvation is the only way you will enter the kingdom of heaven. You have to believe with all your heart that God sacrificed his only begotten Son Jesus Christ for all our sins. You also must believe that Jesus died on the cross, was buried and resurrected in 3 days. I will pray for you that you allow yourself this gift and become a true Christian in the army of the Lord. If you choose to remain ignorant lost soul, enjoy your life in hell

:facepalm:

I don't have do anything you say thankyouverymuch.   If heaven's going to be full of people like you then I'm sure I will be much happier wherever you are not. 

"The World is my country, science my religion" - Christiaan Huygens


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TRUECRISTIAN wrote:snafu

TRUECRISTIAN wrote:

snafu wrote:

Wowm. 

 

Are you saved? The reason I ask is because you seem to be very ignorant. So that leads me to believe that you really have no understanding of the Lord. To someone who believes the Lord well enough to tell you about the free gift you can receive, called SALVATION. Salvation is the only way you will enter the kingdom of heaven. You have to believe with all your heart that God sacrificed his only begotten Son Jesus Christ for all our sins. You also must believe that Jesus died on the cross, was buried and resurrected in 3 days. I will pray for you that you allow yourself this gift and become a true Christian in the army of the Lord. If you choose to remain ignorant lost soul, enjoy your life in hell

 

 

Hello Poe

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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snafu wrote:Wow, this is the

snafu wrote:

Wow, this is the frist time I've visited this forum in ages and this topic almost made me late for work!

Great work BobSpence and RedneF.   I dunno how much simpler you can explain yourselves and still not be understood.   I'm no expert in logic and you've pretty much nailed that anyway I'd just like to chuck in a little bit about what Wakawaka said regarding the following:

Wakawaka wrote:

you said:  Only evidence that can be falsified by testing can be justifiably called 'correct knowledge'. Everything else is speculation 

Are you saying that which is false is correct?  Are you absolutely sure?

Falsifiability and the attribute of 'falsness' are not one in the same thing.   The principle of falsifiability merely allows the possibility that a given statement can conceivably be proved false under certain circumstances.   Thus, the statement "There is no God" is easily falsifiable by producing said God.  The statement "There is a God" is unfalsifiable because as many examples as you can provide for there not being a God there can always be the response that you're not looking in the right place/way/whatever.   These are examples of singular existential statements regarding a particular thing.

 

There are also universal statements about whole categories of thing such as "all swans are white" or "all objects attract each other with a force proportional to their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between them".   Such statements for the basis for most scientific investigation as they can easily be falsified by simple observation.  e.g. we know now that the statement about swans is false due to the discovery of black swans in Australia.   Statements such as the second, and most other scientific 'Laws' continue to be useful to us precisely becuase no observation has been made that renders them false, although it is conceivable that situations could arise in which they are shown to be so.    In which case the 'Law' is refined or modified or thrown out altogether and a new, more accurate 'Law' is used in its place.   This kind of thing happens a lot and is one of the wonders of the scientific method.   You only have to look at the history books to see some of the theories that were once held to be 'universally true' that we now know were wrong - think flat Earth, geocentricity, phlogiston, ether, etc.   What we call 'universal laws' are merely those that appear to make the best predictions over the widest range of conditions that we have yet experienced.   Likewise, 'universal constants' are just those that we've so far measured to be constant at every place in the observable universe although there are some that believe that these laws and constants do not hold for certain conditions such as black holes and the very early universe.

 

One tiny OT comment to make as well to Rednef:

RedneF wrote:
Machinist blocks are considered 'absolutely, perfectly flat'. They are ground so flat and smooth that when you place one on top of another you can lift both of them by lifting the top one because of the vacuum between them.

I thought that was due to the van der Waal's forces of attraction acting between the atoms in the two blocks as they are brought so close together.  It's the same principle as Gecko's feet and blu-tack.   There simply isn;t room for anything between them, even vacuum. 

Hey snafu, great post. Hope to see you around more often.

In response to your comments, machinist blocks need to be 'wrung' together in order to 'bond' well. Last I read, which admittedly was decades ago, the jury was still out on what exactly makes the bond between them so strong.

 

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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snafu,I second redneF's

snafu,

I second redneF's comment.

Fascinating to see such a intelligent, informed post immediately followed by one so diametrically opposite....

 

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

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


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Lol. I could write a short

Lol. I could write a short novel on all the flaws in that one post by truechristian. Instead I'll just let it sit as yet another perfect example of theist stupidity. Even if poe, which is sadly not a certainty by any stretch of the imagination, it serves such a purpose perfectly.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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In life, that Christ-hater

In life, that Christ-hater demanded the special privileges of "separation of church and state" and "religious freedom and neutrality," when the Constitution doesn't even use those words. In death, he can enjoy the special privilege of eternal torment in the lake of fire. Praise Jesus!
 

JESUS IS LOVE