Jump to content
Avant Labs
Sign in to follow this  
Dante

When debating philosophy/politics/economics.

Recommended Posts

This isn't going to be articulate, just a ranting storm of guidelines in light of what recently I've seen:

 

1) Debating these issues is just as serious as debating supplement science. That said, merely to state "Immanuel Kant said this, and in relation to [insert person here], he believed that [insert notion here]" and so on.

 

If you have, or adopt a belief, back it up with your logic.

 

Contrary to what the academics may assume, intelligence is not judged by how many books you've read and how much by rote you can repeat. We attempt to argue from fundamentals, the ground-work which gives rise to all levels above the foundation.

 

Arguing from the 50th floor, debating minutia, just as like those pedantic, gets us nowhere, and precludes those who may have otherwise participated, from giving input.

 

Reading does not make you think, repeating doesn't show what you're conversant with.

 

2) If you believe all is just a matter of opinion, then don't dare to bathe your fucking teeth in light. How can you so steadfast to anything adhere if your premise, by that, you invalidate. If you don't believe in absolutes, or objective reasoning (meaning that the nature of something can indeed be verified), then by no means you have to argue.

 

You'll contradict yourself the very moment anyone you debate, as against what standard can you debate "opinion".

 

3) We don't expect anyone to be omniscient, as that no one is. Some issue very well may be that which you've never considered. However anything, whatever thought or even then a conclusion as may you come to, should be backed up by whatever reason for that opinion you presently hold.

 

If you believe in Communism, but it's something you've never thoroughly investigated, then state as much, and either there, end, or if you continue as though you speak the truth, support it.

 

You can quote whomever you wish till your blue in the face, quote as many statistics as can you do, but that'll never prove a point unless you show some form of coherence.

 

I quote Ras from an email as once he sent me:

 

Pile of data cannot be equated to the irrefutable truth, no more than a mountain of shit can be scaled to bring one closer to enlightenment

 

If we're debating history or economics, then you must show the reason behind the circumstance, as what is cause, and what is effect, isn't always readily seen; "Back in the industrial age, people suffered, that should be proof enough of the evils of Capitalism"----no, it is not, as you're not arguing from a fundamental level, just as stating "a man with Type 2 Diabetes has medical issues beyond his control" doesn't reveal if this man's lifestyle first enacted that which now he has, instead of assuming the condition as the cause.

 

4) Refrain from scurrilous postings. There are numerous instances in which I had many such appellations dancing on the tip of my tongue (retard, idiot, etc). I refrained, and from all that I expect. Recently the debates have travelled down a negative path, that which never we've seen before.

 

Let this be clear, you can know everything about "debating skills", but if you can't comport yourself in a proper manner, then you know nothing.

 

And perhaps very well, if someone can't understand your point, or perhaps seems to be prevaricating, this may well be because you can't shut the hell up for a moment, so that your stance is clearly known, if even one you truly have, not muddled in a pile of regurgitated bullshit.

 

Oftentimes, one's misunderstaning and/or inability to answer your question is your fault (as it sometimes is with me).

------

 

Obviously, Garbage Board posts intended as mere nonsense, to this the above doesn't apply. For everything else, even here, it does.

 

This, I'll leave, with a post by VirtualCyber, as this is truly the essence of this all:

 

In arguments, what is generally important is not the intricacy of logic in proving or disproving a thesis, but producing ideas and evidence for or against the thesis. Those ideas and evidence, that's the most interesting part of the argument.

 

Otherwise, the arguments quickly get old and tiresome.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And if any of this seems harsh, it's because what were once good debates have now turned into acrimonious shit-storms.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would like to add on that quoting someone should in no means be discouraged. I have felt compelled to quote people merely to avoid taking credit for their words, if they are close to your own or not. I will have no problem logically backing up a point of view (even upon initially using a quote)...For example, I myself mentioned a Kant philosophy, one that I would myself use logic to back up if it were relevant to the argument at hand directly (but sometimes when it is not relevent directly, by mentioning a name to associated a concept, it would allow an opponent to reference that entire idea in the context of the proper argument, without reitterating the concept off topic). For the sake of reference alone, sometimes a mention of a name or a quote would help a topic to remain on course without too much divergence discussing a quick passing, interrelated philosophy.

 

 

I am definately in agreeance that names and quotes do not equate logic and intelligence.

 

 

EDIT: Wait a sec...a statement begining in Par Deus says, "..." is not logically valid in itself, without no further explanation required?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree, but well do we know that to not always be the case, so my statement very particular, the instances in which there's more tongue than brains.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2) If you believe all is just a matter of opinion, then don't dare to bathe your fucking teeth in light. How can you so steadfast to anything adhere if your premise, by that, you invalidate. If you don't believe in absolutes, or objective reasoning (meaning that the nature of something can indeed be verified), then by no means you have to argue.

 

You'll contradict yourself the very moment anyone you debate, as against what standard can you debate \"opinion\".

 

 

I have a couple of quotes(lol) by Nietzsche (whom Ras,as well as many others I'm sure,respect as a philosopher):

 

"There are no facts, only interpretations."

 

"Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies."

 

"What are man's truths ultimately? Merely his irrefutable errors."

 

"If there is no objective truth, then it follows that there is no God."

 

"You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, the only way, it does not exist."

 

Dante,do you believe a person who does not believe in moral absolutes for example automatically disqualifies himself from a debate on morals or whatever?

 

If Ras is reading this maybe he can give his view on absolutes(especially as it relates to morals).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't have a direct issue with quotes, so long as the person shows an understanding of what they've read, if they're actually digesting what they're eating.

 

I have a profound respect for Ras, as he's by far the most well-read and intelligent person I've seen on all things philosophical, as although I may not always with him, agree, it can always be seen how he bridges his thoughts together, unlike many or most. I miss the fact that he doesn't post here as often (as he's currently occupied), but still ask for his advice now and then.

 

So, again, it's the context within which you quote, one who understands set against one who sticks their finger down their throat, heaving back up that pile of excrement once they swallowed. I tend to think if more people actually paid more thought to what they're reading, and quoting, they'd actually come to a different conclusion.

 

There are no facts, only interpretations.

 

Then I ask, what are we interpreting. Doesn't every being, animate or not, have an identity, a defining attribute which against others serves to distinguish it. Isn't the recognition of this, a fact, the truth. Which leads me to:

 

Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies

 

One conviction isn't equal to another, and if men blindly take whatever given as the "truth", by that a conviction, this doen't sully the notion of absolutes. It does, however, vitiate the general means by which most men reason, as is it faulty.

 

What are man's truths ultimately? Merely his irrefutable errors

 

Yes, because often what one considers "truth" is nothing more than convention.

 

If there is no objective truth, then it follows that there is no God.

 

But there is objective truth, even without God.

 

You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, the only way, it does not exist.

 

That, if your belief, then what do we ever truly debate. Why bother. Have you ever considered yourself "wronged", or in the "right". If so, then by what standard can you assume so.

 

Omnibus, I've seen you debate certain aspects of Steroid use and Steroid properties on CEM, now, in order to do so, isn't there an objective truth you're aiming to target. If so, doesn't one exist for the universe itself, and of animate creatures such as us. Do we or don't we have defining attributes as human beings which, if not acknowledged, hinder progress and survival itself.

 

Is it chance that some countries prosper, and others not. If there's no difference from one "opinion" to the next, then could the progress we now have then have come forth in the Dark Ages. If not, why so.

 

 

Dante,do you believe a person who does not believe in moral absolutes for example automatically disqualifies himself from a debate on morals or whatever?

 

Yes, as how can there be even a debate itself, if everything, all things thought, stand as equals, that is, stand as nothing.

 

It never ceases to amaze me how men will go to great lengths, how hefty their tomes, to prove "nothing". You'd garner "Nothing can be proven, and since I can't prove this to be so, so now will I'll shut up", would suffice, that the only line in the only book ever written.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm confused, a second time. Why debate if there are objective truths -- what are these truths; can they be changed, if no then why debate, if yes then how?

 

You'd garner that \"nothing can be proven, and since I can't prove this to be so, now I'll shut up\"

 

Again, baffled. How does one prove? We can only provide evidence in support, and if you relate this mathematically -- increase the evidence to infinity and you have an objective truth?

 

You're saying it's possible to argue "Well, in support of my argument, I cite the absolute, objective truth that God exists..."

 

You refute God's existence on logical contradiction (as have others), but maintain that there are unknown absolutes?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, now Gene is a perfect example of what I'm talking about. Yes, occasionally does he quote, but, he always struggles to come to a conclusion, and doesn't just blindly swallow. So even with him, if I don't agree, I love the debate. That said:

 

I'm confused, a second time. Why debate if there are objective truths -- what are these truths; can they be changed, if no then why debate, if yes then how?

 

You're assuming we start from a point of omniscience, from there to debate. We attempt to recognize what are these truths, just as in science, the body, it acts by certain mechanisms, those which we seek to understand.

 

Now, of course, one could ask "well, if we're not omniscient, how can we ever know anything", we start off with common sense--for everything there is a cause, and for every cause there is one which came first.

 

Can these "truths" be changed, no, but what someone's understanding of the issue, however faulty, if that it is, can.

 

Again, baffled. How does one prove? We can only provide evidence in support, and if you relate this mathematically -- increase the evidence to infinity and you have an objective truth?

 

What is evidence without truth. Again, if something is nothing, that is, if nothing can be truly defined, then where does evidence lead us. We attempt to prove by showing whether or not our evidence correlates with the circumstance.

 

I like to use economic systems as an anology: if all economic systems are equal, then can progress within each be equally gained. If not, doesn't this show how one, being better than the other, is a truth.

 

You're saying it's possible to argue \"Well, in support of my argument, I cite the absolute, objective truth that God exists...\"

 

You refute God's existence on logical contradiction (as have others), but maintain that there are unknown absolutes?

 

Merely stating "this is the absolute, objective truth" doesn't make it so, if one can't relay why this they believe. There's common sense, and from this we may or may not come to apprehend what these absolutes are (as the process of thought and bridging isn't automatic).

 

It isn't a matter of faith, that the grounds upon which all religious arguments are predicated. Do you believe science a matter of faith. If not, then if we often make mistakes in our attempt to comprehend, by this is any objective understanding of the body and the physical world impossible. If not, then how do we know, how do we judge, if our theories are correct or not.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dante,I understand the problem with debating but not believing in absolutes.

 

I think objectivists say that claiming that "there are no absolutes" is an irrational claim in itself since that statement alludes to a fact i.e fact=there are no absolutes.Can you state anything without believing in absolutes?

 

Personally I feel I must believe in absolutes.At least as it pertains to the physical world.Moral absolutes?I'm not sure about that.

 

I put up the nietzsche quotes to provoke debate and because you quoted Ras.He called himself a Nietzschean once(and he objected to Ayn Rands statement that Nietzsche was irrational and a mystic).Now,Nietzsche made those comments I quoted and he seemed to (to my understanding)deny the existence of absolutes,especially moral ones.

Therefore it would be interesting to know what Ras had to say on this subject(he does seem awfully educated).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Omnibus, I've seen you debate certain aspects of Steroid use and Steroid properties on CEM, now, in order to do so, isn't there an objective truth you're aiming to target. If so, doesn't one exist for the universe itself, and of animate creatures such as us. Do we or don't we have defining attributes as human beings which, if not acknowledged, hinder progress and survival itself.

 

 

I remember reading something(on CEM I think) about how only a small percentage of medical treatments have been really proven to work(even according to the medical community).Isn't it true that what the scientific community regards as "truth" today might be refuted by "science" tomorrow?

Of course things like this don't prove that absolutes don't exist(only that you perceived wrong) but how do you know when you really arrive at a truth that will never be prove as 'untruth'?

I think things like this have made some people believe that truth is sort of an evolving and changeable thing and concerning oneself with whether absolutes really exist or not is meaningless.Work with what you 'know' to be 'true' today. biggrin.gif

 

I hope I'm making some sense. tongue.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's true that reaching a conclusion isn't easy for me, or I would imagine for anyone else always subconsciously reanalyzing logical coherence for/against an idea. Sometimes, it comes out folded by the conflicting arguments,

 

Actually, I agree with a majority of what you say, and what you've stated in the first post. Especially, that we argue from fundamentals.

 

I don't intend on throwing this into a debate on absolutes, unless people prefer it, but specifically as it applies to our other, more important issues, as insidiously as that is so:

 

adopt a belief, back it up with your logic

 

If you don't believe in absolutes ... then by no means you have to argue

 

Yet,

 

What is evidence without truth. Again, if something is nothing, that is, if nothing can be truly defined, then where does evidence lead us. We attempt to prove by showing whether or not our evidence correlates with the circumstance.

 

If we argue matters of science, even though there are many ostensible scientific "facts," it has not not been shown to be true that one can prove a science or scientif claims -- all we can have is evidence in support. You can, however, provide evidence to disprove a scientific claim.

 

Laws, theories, hypotheses -- these are based on scientists' beliefs, and are backed with evidence, direct or indirect. This is the nature of science, which does, depend on logic. Since we can't observe Newton's first law, we rely on a series of experiments that show this law to hold true. However, this doesn't "prove" the law -- it simply doesn't disprove it.

 

So what are we disproving? Not physics, nor the laws of physics -- only the logical deductions of Newton, who conjured up the hypotheses that we now regard as laws by way of the overwhelming, irrefraggable we say even, supporting evidence.

 

So, in a sense you are correct -- one adopts a belief, as science is indeed based on beliefs, and then backs it with logic (supporting evidence). But it doesn't need to be an absolute truth for that to be so, it's not impossible to build on scientific relativities that have so much supporting evidence that they are perceived as truths. Of course, if the fundamental theories break down, so do all those built on the deeper layers of logical deduction.

 

What I said on this, back in the marijuana thread:

 

"These people, they have have blind faith. There is no refuting or offering of alternate possibilities to them.

 

Accordingly, no one should ever put their "blind faith" in science. You can't. If you say you have, then you clearly demonstrate that you do not understand science."

 

I didn't mean that in condescending way, but the deeper meaning was that science can't prove anything, and when one considers the room for error and ambiguity in science, paralleled with the alleged contradictions of the Bible, it becomes clear that one can't merely have blind faith in anything -- as you've been saying all along.

 

In any case, I veered off-course. Arguing science should be not much different than arguing matters of world politics or gay rights. If science wasn't compatible with the logical structure of proper arguments, then scientific evidence would not be heralded in such high esteem. But, because an experiment is verifiable, doesn't mean it contributes to a truth of an absolute nature. We know that science is often wrong and most experiments has questions unanswered.

 

Science, through critical reason, has actually shown that the two (it and absolutes) are not compatible. Science actually has no way of investigating an objective truth. In line with this view, I maintain that if absolutes cannot exist in science, and science is logical, then absolutes cannot make their way into logical arguments, which extend to matters outside of science.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Okay, now Gene is a perfect example of what I'm talking about. Yes, occasionally does he quote, but, he always struggles to come to a conclusion, and doesn't just blindly swallow.

If this statement happened to be taken out of context, it could go in the homosexuality thread.

 

Sorry, I couldn't resist adding a little humor to this discussion laugh.gif

 

We know Gene isn't gay...not that there's anything wrong with it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I admit, that got a good laugh out of me laugh.gif

 

I assert my heterosexuality as a logically coherent argument, albeit one that lacks evidence -- so I suppose this is up for debate too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I admit, that got a good laugh out of me  laugh.gif

 

I assert my heterosexuality as a logically coherent argument, albeit one that lacks evidence -- so I suppose this is up for debate too.

Gene, aren't you going to Med School? Just curious what you know about Washington University in St. Louis....that's where I was going to go before some things in my life changed.

 

I'll let others debate your sexuality ohmy.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
If we argue matters of science, even though there are many ostensible scientific \"facts,\" it has not not been shown to be true that one can prove a science or scientif claims -- all we can have is evidence in support. You can, however, provide evidence to disprove a scientific claim.

 

Proof is that there is cause and effect, and that everything has an indentity; that our starting point for all things scientific (physical/metaphysical).

 

Again, I'd like someone to address my economic analogy. Are all systems equal, and if progress can only come from one, and not another, will this change, and if yes, then how.

 

Laws, theories, hypotheses -- these are based on scientists' beliefs, and are backed with evidence, direct or indirect. This is the nature of science, which does, depend on logic. Since we can't observe Newton's first law, we rely on a series of experiments that show this law to hold true. However, this doesn't \"prove\" the law -- it simply doesn't disprove it.

 

How does it not prove the law. If I throw an apple, then for it so surely come down, does this not assert the veracity of it. If we can fly, a plane, a glider, whatever, isn't there something we must first acknowledge in order to storm against what's inevitable---what goes up must come down.

 

 

So, in a sense you are correct -- one adopts a belief, as science is indeed based on beliefs, and then backs it with logic (supporting evidence). But it doesn't need to be an absolute truth for that to be so, it's not impossible to build on scientific relativities that have so much supporting evidence that they are perceived as truths. Of course, if the fundamental theories break down, so do all those built on the deeper layers of logical deduction.

 

Yes, which is why we first have to investigate those first layers. That's why I love to use the TypeII Diabetic as an example.

 

How can something be relative to nothing (this we got into in the marijuana thread).

 

\"These people, they have have blind faith. There is no refuting or offering of alternate possibilities to them.

 

Accordingly, no one should ever put their \"blind faith\" in science. You can't. If you say you have, then you clearly demonstrate that you do not understand science.\"

 

But it's not a matter of blind-faith. We have to understand that we're limited in our knowledge, as the new may it come (in terms of how whatever we perceive). But, again, we first have to see if perhaps our initial premises were first faulted.

 

Stating, "I believe the absolute comprehensible", that you can't equate with "I'll take whatever's given to me, that to my lips, and then down the hatch".

 

I didn't mean that in condescending way, but the deeper meaning was that science can't prove anything, and when one considers the room for error and ambiguity in science, paralleled with the alleged contradictions of the Bible, it becomes clear that one can't merely have blind faith in anything -- as you've been saying all along

 

But, because an experiment is verifiable, doesn't mean it contributes to a truth of an absolute nature. We know that science is often wrong and most experiments has questions unanswered.

 

But don't you first wonder why science in some instances is wrong, and how we initially came to such conclusions.

 

Think, back then, when women were "observed", categorically, the weaker sex. Generally, is this so, but certainly not in all instances. If the philosopher did to cast a more penetrating glance at the subject of this thought, first should he have wondered if the roles in which women were to relegated, precluded gains of physical strength and combat mastery.

 

So the same applies to females and their (then, and for the troglodytes, now) perceived intellectual inferiority.

 

Science, through critical reason, has actually shown that the two (it and absolutes) are not compatible. Science actually has no way of investigating an objective truth. In line with this view, I maintain that if absolutes cannot exist in science, and science is logical, then absolutes cannot make their way into logical arguments, which extend to matters outside of science.

 

I've already addressed this, and again, if nothing is first static, all to change, no, not our perceptions as I state, but the world, its nature itself, as do may others assert, then we're investigating nothing, and science is fruitless.

 

I doubt anything more this line of thought, I could possibly contribute. And how I loathe to state "we'll just agree to disagree", but in this, what else can either of us, not before had we done, state?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Of course things like this don't prove that absolutes don't exist(only that you perceived wrong

 

Quite.

 

but how do you know when you really arrive at a truth that will never be prove as 'untruth'?

 

Science states "within the present context of our knowledge, this we believe to be true, the evidence presented as such".

 

When all such evidence, your thought, can't topple.

 

Can someone "prove" to me that they don't exist, or do this, we know as the truth. So then, isn't this an absolute, that you are indeed here (or there). And don't say "well, what if I die tomorrow", as that which isn't can kiss death.

 

I think things like this have made some people believe that truth is sort of an evolving and changeable thing and concerning oneself with whether absolutes really exist or not is meaningless.Work with what you 'know' to be 'true' today. biggrin.gif

 

I agree, in the sense that we can't just say "here's the truth, and here will we stop". I disagree, in the sense that we first must assume everything to indeed be comprehensible, then to set our evidence against reality. To this, I'll refer to my women expample in the previous post (what we thought "true", given then, the present context of our knowledge, there seeing where lied the fault).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Proof is that there is cause and effect

That's a hypothesis. Only with enough evidence, does it begin to bear some validity. "Proof" is outside the scope of science. Science is fallible, prone to error, and as such is limited to approximations, confidence, statistical significance, etc.

 

How does it not prove the law. If I throw an apple, then for it so surely come down, does this not assert the veracity of it. If we can fly, a plane, a glider, whatever, isn't there something we must first acknowledge in order to storm against what's inevitable---what goes up must come down.

 

I explained this more thoroughly in Rich's thread.

 

We don't "acknowledge" gravity per se, we have faith in it by relying on the overwhelming amount of evidence that supports the "fact" (read -- prediction) that there will still be gravity upon takeoff. Gravity is based on a formula, a fuction of the masses and radii of the planets. The equation responsible, based on a "gravitational constant" (the value of which is still being debated), is a theory/law in itself, one that merely gives us some predictive value. There is no guarantee, however, that there will still be gravity on your next flight. We can only predict with very high certainty.

 

I realize this sounds like a semantic nitpick, I apologize if it unintentionally comes off that way. I've tried squeezing some alternative views into my logic and it just doesn't hold.

 

How can something be relative to nothing (this we got into in the marijuana thread).

 

This is what I took some time to think about.

 

On one hand, I can clearly see the logic leading to Nietzsche' conclusion that with no absolutes it follows that there is no God. I can also see the how the converse make some sense, since God would be the one to come to us with the absolute truth. But then, if God is able to present the absolute truth, why can't we find out what it is from someone who has this connection with God? Many Death Row inmates claim to have found God. Perhaps we can ask them, what is the absolute truth?

 

Of course, this is rediculous. If we simply say that God knows the absolute truth but won't tell a living soul, then this is a belief without evidence, and hence, spurious.

 

This leads to another question -- is an absolute also relative to nothing?

If so, and absolutes exist, then it is legitimate for something to be relative to nothing.

 

But, in this context, what would qualify as an absolute? Well, we have all of these natural laws, governing stars, planets, and molecules. The universe gives us some rules by which to play. Why can't scientific relativities be relative to natural laws? I think they can, as they also are modified accordingly when the natural laws of the circumstance changes as well (ie, gravity on another planet).

 

Also, how does one perceive an absolute? Well, we can gain an understanding of natural laws by challenging them with scientific research.

 

I always love to use the example of quantum mechanics. Inside atoms, the commonly perceived rules of reality to not apply; a single particle can paradoxically be in two places at the same time. The absolute truth couldn't be then that we live in a world of fixed and precise properties. Also, reality in this context couldn't be absolute, because the laws are conditional -- inside and outside atoms different natural laws apply. As such, natural laws are not absolute, but can provide the context for scientific relativities.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We don't "acknowledge" gravity per se, we have faith in it...

Faith? Did you say faith?!?!?!?!

 

Follow along:

 

"Science is a tool of reason and not faith."

 

"Reason and faith must be separate."

 

"Reason and faith must be separate."

 

"They can not be tied together."

 

[Repeat]

 

 

 

rolleyes.gifbiggrin.gifrolleyes.gifbiggrin.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That's a hypothesis. Only with enough evidence, does it begin to bear some validity.

 

No, it is an axiom, as that without, you'd have absolutely no starting point to observe anything. Everything could be anything. Man could now and then later, require and not require water, as he would have no identity, and if he did or did not drink water, it wouldn't matter.

 

 

There is no guarantee, however, that there will still be gravity on your next flight. We can only predict with very high certainty.

 

I've explained my stance on this already, I think, so I'm not going to run in circles chasing the same tail.

 

Oh screw it, I will (how I love to argue, as well you know smile.gif ). "Faith", is a belief which you can't logically support, which is what all religious arguments are eventually reduced to ("well, I guess we just have to have faith").

 

In this case, it's not an issue of "faith". Their "belief" is not based upon the recognition of identity, but rather, hope.

 

I realize this sounds like a semantic nitpick, I apologize if it unintentionally comes off that way. I've tried squeezing some alternative views into my logic and it just doesn't hold.

 

And same here, no other view with me holds.

 

n one hand, I can clearly see the logic leading to Nietzsche' conclusion that with no absolutes it follows that there is no God. I can also see the how the converse make some sense, since God would be the one to come to us with the absolute truth. But then, if God is able to present the absolute truth, why can't we find out what it is from someone who has this connection with God? Many Death Row inmates claim to have found God. Perhaps we can ask them, what is the absolute truth?

 

All who "find God", do so with hope, not with logic. Yes, if there were no absolutes, there would be no God, as there would be no first-cause, and everything would be nothing, that itself a contradiction. But this isn't the argument. Absolutes can exist without God if we take existence itself as the first-cause.

 

Of course, this is rediculous. If we simply say that God knows the absolute truth but won't tell a living soul, then this is a belief without evidence, and hence, spurious.

 

This part always amuses me, as if life were a game "Well, we can't comprehend God", which is ridiculous, assuming if He were benevolent, and wished for us to crawl upon the right path.

 

We're just His toys, the children of a divinely petulant child.

 

'This leads to another question -- is an absolute also relative to nothing?

If so, and absolutes exist, then it is legitimate for something to be relative to nothing.

 

An absolute can't be relative to nothing, just as every entity has to have property. A "law", which applied to nothing wouldn't be a law, so then we can't just assume "well if laws can be relative to nothing, then something can then as well be relative to nothing".

 

Not all assumptions are equal.

 

But, in this context, what would qualify as an absolute? Well, we have all of these natural laws, governing stars, planets, and molecules. The universe gives us some rules by which to play. Why can't scientific relativities be relative to natural laws? I think they can, as they also are modified accordingly when the natural laws of the circumstance changes as well (ie, gravity on another planet).

 

Yes, gravity on another planet, as this too holds an absolute, that gravity exists in context, the given property of the planet. That's the absolute, that the planet has an identity which we have to recognize. No different than saying "this animal can fly, and if man is an animal, but can't fly, then stating that the former animal can fly isn't an absolute".

 

You'd be dropping the context.

 

. The absolute truth couldn't be then that we live in a world of fixed and precise properties. Also, reality in this context couldn't be absolute, because the laws are conditional -- inside and outside atoms different natural laws apply. As such, natural laws are not absolute, but can provide the context for scientific relativities

 

Why wouldn't you first amend what you then considered be the truth, instead of stating "so here, we show that there are no absolutes".

 

You're setting up anything as an absolute, as though anything it can be, so that as soon as it is dicounted, you dimiss the very notion of absolutes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

God damnit. You caught me in logical fuck up, "there are no absolutes; here's one"

 

I wonder how this applies to my arguments on science, although I don't think that they all automatically self-destruct; whether acknowledged or not, I was concluding on a series of sound premises.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gene,

 

You do a damn good job of philosophically reasoning for someone who's read little if any philosophy. Most have had the cocks of 1000 men shoved down their throat, and little do they realize that whatever they spit back out is thought with a low sperm-count.

 

You're a genius in the making, my friend, it's okay to be wrong (better to be wrong in the process of critically thinking than "right" by the rote) smile.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder what might've sparked this post. huh.gif

 

1) Debating these issues is just as serious as debating supplement science. That said, merely to state "Immanuel Kant said this, and in relation to [insert person here], he believed that [insert notion here]" and so on.

 

If you have, or adopt a belief, back it up with your logic.

 

Contrary to what the academics may assume, intelligence is not judged by how many books you've read and how much by rote you can repeat. We attempt to argue from fundamentals, the ground-work which gives rise to all levels above the foundation.

 

Arguing from the 50th floor, debating minutia, just as like those pedantic, gets us nowhere, and precludes those who may have otherwise participated, from giving input.

 

Reading does not make you think, repeating doesn't show what you're conversant with.

 

I agree with some of this, conceptually. You shouldn't be able to cut and paste something and treat it as an argument. I'm also not too big on appeals to authority. However, I have a few issues:

 

1)Quotes can be used to illustrate or support a point. Also, if you're trying to make a certain point but know of a place where that point is made more succinctly than you're capable of, I see no reason not to quote it.

2)Original ideas are virtually impossible to find. If you say it, you can bet that somebody else has probably said it also. Thus, it is impossible to mandate every idea to be "original," and it's impossible to determine if every idea was the product of original thought or a product of reading it somewhere else.

3)The source of an argument does not take away from the validity of an argument (not to say that it contributes to it). If I quote someone else, but their quote directly applies to the issue at hand, there is no reason why it should be dismissed as an invalid argument.

 

2) If you believe all is just a matter of opinion, then don't dare to bathe your fucking teeth in light.

 

I'm sorry if I've offended you.

 

How can you so steadfast to anything adhere if your premise, by that, you invalidate. If you don't believe in absolutes, or objective reasoning (meaning that the nature of something can indeed be verified), then by no means you have to argue.

 

You'll contradict yourself the very moment anyone you debate, as against what standard can you debate "opinion".

 

I'm afraid I don't agree with this, here's why: This is all based on your interpretation of the way the world should be. According to you, everything should be rational, logical, explainable. Fitting into nice little objective, universal pockets of knowledge. Your statement is valid only if you assume that there ARE absolutes. You act as though not believing in absolutes and having opinions are mutually exclusive. I've explained TIME AND TIME AGAIN why they aren't.

 

I want you to try a little mental exercise. Imagine that rationality, and every other philosophy, is self-defeating. Imagine that there is no conceptual basis on which to live your life. The world seems empty, bleak, completely without meaning. But to say that this means that a standard such as rationality does "exist" is an argument based completely on emotion alone, negating the very rational structure which you are trying to uphold.

 

There are more reasons that this picture of the world seems very bleak to someone who is not used to it than I can count. A few of them:

 

1)We are addicted to our beliefs. Rationality is a core belief that almost all humans have learned to share. We base our view of the world on it. It shapes are perceptions, preconceptions, and our ideas of what is and isn't possible. Whenever you present someone with the idea that there may be a flaw with the ideals that they've structured their very lives around, they'll fight it both consciously and subconsciously.

2)Throughout our childhood, we are usually given the impression that there is a fundamental basis for life. The idea of a fundamental, unifying principle becomes intrinsic to our understanding of the world. But our society is filled with people who believe both Christianity and rationality are "true." A great subset of the population is made up of people who have realized that the two are mutually exclusive, but instead of rejecting both, pick one or the other - because they believe that there is an explainable basis for life. Hence, the growing divergence between religion and science has given birth to a new "religion." I'm anti-Christian, but I'm going to present a new proposition: Rationality is based on faith alone.

 

So your driving question, then, is "how can one believe this and still make assertions?" A few answers:

 

1)Pragmatism. I believe that rationality/logic is the most useful basis for human discussion and argumentation. It is a very useful tool, and I think it is to be preferred over most other ideals.

 

Something's come up and I have to cut this short (lost my train of thought, anyway). Will finish response later.

 

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A final comment, or an invitation if you will.

 

Anybody, present a statement that can be rationally proven and not rationally disproven. Then I will give you a reason, perhaps a few reasons, why it is not so.

 

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I wonder what might've sparked this post.

 

It's been the climate of these discussions, as of lately (people at each other's throats and such, especially the "animal rights" thread, wherein, initially, people were slinging shit at each other).

 

More later on this.

 

 

1)Quotes can be used to illustrate or support a point. Also, if you're trying to make a certain point but know of a place where that point is made more succinctly than you're capable of, I see no reason not to quote it.

2)Original ideas are virtually impossible to find. If you say it, you can bet that somebody else has probably said it also. Thus, it is impossible to mandate every idea to be \"original,\" and it's impossible to determine if every idea was the product of original thought or a product of reading it somewhere else.

3)The source of an argument does not take away from the validity of an argument (not to say that it contributes to it). If I quote someone else, but their quote directly applies to the issue at hand, there is no reason why it should be dismissed as an invalid argument.

 

David, in this context, I totally agree. Again, I don't have issue with quotes per se (should have more properly worded my post), but rather the manner in which they're most often used.

 

I'm sorry if I've offended you.

 

I mentioned Chuck, as an example, as I can't understand how someone who doesn't believe they have any objective grounds to stand upon, can be so ferocious (as that you are, with him, which I certainly don't by that alone take issue against; I have many my moments smile.gif

 

David, I'm a mordant individual, but I couldn't imagine having any debates, as often I do, if I believed that nothing's true, and nothing can be proven. It would be pointless. I'd just give up before even I started.

 

I'm afraid I don't agree with this, here's why: This is all based on your interpretation of the way the world should be. According to you, everything should be rational, logical, explainable. Fitting into nice little objective, universal pockets of knowledge. Your statement is valid only if you assume that there ARE absolutes. You act as though not believing in absolutes and having opinions are mutually exclusive. I've explained TIME AND TIME AGAIN why they aren't.

 

And I've as well explained time resting more upon time my stance too, so that again, I won't.

 

I want you to try a little mental exercise. Imagine that rationality, and every other philosophy, is self-defeating. Imagine that there is no conceptual basis on which to live your life. The world seems empty, bleak, completely without meaning. But to say that this means that a standard such as rationality does \"exist\" is an argument based completely on emotion alone, negating the very rational structure which you are trying to uphold.

 

Of course, that's true, if we just take your assumption as the starting point, which I don't.

 

 

 

We are addicted to our beliefs. Rationality is a core belief that almost all humans have learned to share. We base our view of the world on it. It shapes are perceptions, preconceptions, and our ideas of what is and isn't possible. Whenever you present someone with the idea that there may be a flaw with the ideals that they've structured their very lives around, they'll fight it both consciously and subconsciously.

 

True, certainly, but this doesn't hold againt my premise.

 

Rationality is based on faith alone.

 

I've debated this with Gene, so again won't I do so.

 

1)Pragmatism. I believe that rationality/logic is the most useful basis for human discussion and argumentation. It is a very useful tool, and I think it is to be preferred over most other ideals.

 

Question, on what grounds do you assume reason/logic as the most useful tool. Is it objectively better, than say, sticking our heads in the ground, then to the ants our queries posed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

×