[ref001] apologetics: DEBATE LOGS - 3/22/96 apologetics: DEBATE LOGS - 3/22/96 [13:54] Jun

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[ref001] apologetics: DEBATE LOGS - 3/22/96 apologetics: DEBATE LOGS - 3/22/96 [13:54] Junkyman (jgiesbrec@ joined #apologetics. [14:08] Boozer (scott@daphne.gfdi.fsu.edu) joined #apologetics. [14:08] lonely? [14:08] nah, i'm doing other stuff too actually [14:08] ah, I see. [14:09] bored? [14:09] So are you a presuppositionalist or a empiricist? [14:09] ether_ore (emerkel@zoom2133.telepath.com) joined #apologetics. [14:09] I have things to do also. [14:09] ether_ore (emerkel@zoom2133.telepath.com) left #apologetics. [14:09] presuppositionalist who sees evidence too [14:10] Ok, well suppose you were trying to convince someone that there is a god. Would you take the presup or evidence approach? [14:11] obviously evidence. [14:11] Is it obvious? [14:11] It's not obvious to me. What sort of evidence? [14:12] probably not. :) [14:13] well, the usual i suppose... the most convincing start for me is that naturalism logically must be false, and then go from there [14:13] Yeah, I've heard the party line here on why naturalism is supposedly false. [14:14] you don't believe it? [14:14] no, I do not. [14:14] can you honestly believe that truely rational beings could have appeared from matter?? [14:15] I can believe it because that is what I observe. [14:15] what you observe??? but don't you take YOUR presuppositions into your observations then? [14:15] I take as few as possible. [14:16] Alcuin (kingtutor@remote4-line29.cis.yale.edu) joined #apologetics. [14:16] Hi [14:16] Look, is your whole argument based on your attack of naturalism and its alledged fallacy? [14:16] hello alcuin. [14:17] well, i don't have ONE argument all laid out... i'm a bit more flexible than that. but i like starting there sometimes. [14:17] Can you do it independently of your attack on naturalism? [14:18] i could try, but I suppose that you've probably heard most of them. [14:18] You mean you'd give me the old first cause argument? [14:18] i'm just curious, how exactly do your observations show you that rational humans appeared out of matter? I didn't get that. [14:19] Topic changed by ApoloBot!bibleman@xlab1.fiu.edu: Supernaturalism--the negation of naturalism! [14:19] hey alcuin, i guess you're a Christian too? [14:19] Since you're posing the question, tell me what matter is. [14:20] sorry, i shouldn't limit it to matter exactly, that word just comes to mind. what i mean is how could rational people have evolved from a natural, self-contained chain of causes-effects? [14:21] As opposed to irration people? [14:22] [14:22] as opposed to people whose actions are decided merely by previous causes and not rational decisions [14:22] I don't care for that definition of rationality. [14:23] That makes none of us rational. [14:23] why not? [14:23] Give me an example of a "rational decision". [14:24] [14:25] but if all of our supposedly rational conclusions (eg. all men are mortal, i am a man, therefore i am mortal) are only the results of natural causes, then how can we have any trust in its validity??? [14:25] Is that your example? That men are mortal? [14:26] that could be one example, yes [14:26] And you arrive at that conclusion having observed that men die. [14:28] Action: Alcuin pours Lime Rickeys for one and all. [14:28] having observed what seems to be a rule that all men are mortal, and that you are a man, you conclude that you are therefore mortal. that is the example (assuming that the first two conclusions were true) [14:28] Right, it is a "rational decision" based entirely on previous events. [14:29] the first two statements are based on previous events. the third statement is a RATIONAL one only (you never observed your own death yet obviously). [14:29] So I don't see your distinction between actions decided by previous causes and rational decision. [14:30] Well, it's an inference based on previous events, anyhow. It's logically valid, too. However, what is the basis for believing that all men are mortal, when one hasn't empirically examined all men? [14:31] what i was calling a rational decision = logical. does that make more sense? [14:31] I'd say that if a high percentage of men (that is, all that have been observed) exhibit a certain quality, you can assume that it applies to all of them. [14:31] If I'm eating chinese food, then Bill Clinton is Elijah. [14:31] I'm eating chinese food. [14:31] Therefore, Bill Clinton is Elijah. [14:31] Then you wait for an exception to rear its ugly head. [14:32] That's logical, too. However, it's unsound. [14:32] okay, so assuming the first two statements, you come to the third statement, a logical conclusion. my point is that if all thoughts are the result of natural causes, what makes that logical conclusion trustworthy? how can you know it is based on the real world? [14:32] That's silly. [14:33] Boozer: a high percentage of men exhibit heterosexuality. Can you therefore assume that it applies to all of them? That's not rational. [14:33] I mean high percentage like more than Ivory Soap. [14:34] Boozer: Likewise, a high percentage of Americans support Bill Clinton. Does it therefore follow that all Americans support Bill Clinton? [14:34] why is it silly? the third statement was not observed, but yet according to naturalism it must have been the result of a natural cause. how then can you know that it is true (it is not observable)??? [14:34] Action: Alcuin stirs his Lime Rickey [14:34] rafzahn (e-was?@rwl02.cip.uni-regensburg.de) joined #APOLOGETICS. [14:34] Considering he was elected with 43% of the popular vote, I'd say no. [14:34] hi [14:34] rafzahn (e-was?@rwl02.cip.uni-regensburg.de) left #APOLOGETICS. [14:34] knowing that logical conclusions are trustworth is the basis of rational thought... naturalism disallows rational thought and therefore renders itself useless [14:35] rafzahn (e-was?@rwl02.cip.uni-regensburg.de) joined #APOLOGETICS. [14:35] rafzahn (e-was?@rwl02.cip.uni-regensburg.de) left #APOLOGETICS. [14:35] "trustworthy" :) [14:35] Explain how naturalism does not allow logical thought. [14:35] Boozer: The point is that observation of *some* members of a natural set does not provide for rational inferences about *all* of the members of that set. [14:36] Alcuin, when all of the observed members of a set exhibit some quality, we may reasonably infer that others that have not been scrutinized will exhibit those same qualities. [14:37] Boozer: false. [14:37] Alcuin, we know that all people are not heterosexual because we have found many that are not. [14:37] Alcuin, I don't see why you're having such a problem with this. [14:38] Action: Alcuin has a problem with broad claims to the validity of induction, because he's familiar with the philosophy of science subsequent to David Hume's dismantling of induction in the late 18th c. [14:38] boozer: how can you know that the logical third-statement/conclusion as above is based on truth if that thought itself is merely the result of previous natural (and quite possibly unrelated) causes? [14:39] Junky, are you suggesting that I might arrive at the conclusion that men are mortal independently of the first two statements? [14:39] Boozer: I guess I hesitate over your claim because of my commitment to rationality. You say: ""when all of the observed members of a set exhibit some quality, we may reasonably infer that other s that have not been scrutinized will exhibit those same qualities"" [14:39] according to naturalism, yes, as thoughts are ONLY the result of other natural causes. [14:40] Junkyman, so the first two statements lead to the third? what's the problem? [14:40] Yet that's patently false. If in your own experience, you have only ever had exposure to people with fair skin, are you rationally justified in concluding that no other pigmentations occur? [14:41] for logical conclusions to be true, they must act completely distinct from natural causes (eg. not just caused by some atoms in the brain smacking around), therefore rational minds are supernatural, therefore naturalism is wrong . [14:41] As far as you're concened there would be no other colors. [14:41] Amazing. [14:41] alcuin: yes you are, with some uncertainty. that's not my point, anyway. [14:42] And when you discover these other people with different pigmentations you say "Wow. Learn something new every day." [14:42] And if you have read only X books (where X is some number), then you're rationally justified in inferring that books are only about the subject matters which you have seen in the books you've read? [14:42] Junkyman, why must logical conclusions operate independently of natural causes? [14:42] Boozer, that's not rational; that's provisional. [14:43] Boozer: Junkyman is right. Logic is impossible in a naturalistic worldview. [14:43] Ah, the anthem of #apologetics. [14:44] boozer: if supposedly rational thoughts are the effect of a previous chain of causes, how can you know that they are true? that chain of causes could result in any thought, not necessarily a true one. [14:44] madcow (wtburns@dialin17.mwtech.com) joined #apologetics. [14:44] hello [14:44] You know truth though the consistency of these thoughts over time. [14:45] hiya madcom! you a Christian or atheist or in between?? :) [14:45] heh, madcow. :) [14:45] Boozer: Are there laws of logic in a naturalist's world? [14:45] Christian [14:45] Action: Alcuin offers a milkshake to madcow [14:46] Action: Boozer wonders if madcow is in Britain right now. [14:46] but what makes any of those thoughts true??? [14:46] if the thought is consistent with nature then it is true. [14:46] you are then using inferences to prove inferences true. that is a circular argument, sorry. [14:46] but truth is independent of what individuals think. [14:47] I have a question...thanks, I needed that [14:47] Boozer: How do you tell whether thought T is or is not consistent with nature? [14:47] No....in Kansas City [14:47] boozer: i know that. but how do you know that your supposed logic is true to that truth??? that's the question here! [14:47] Alcuin, the same way you do I'm sure. [14:48] Sample thought T: "There exists a duck such that the duck is naturally purple." [14:48] i can't see any way out of the problem unless you accept that rational minds operate apart from the natural order. [14:49] JUnkyman, because there is no other order than natural order. [14:49] Boozer: How do you verify whether T is consistent with nature? If you've never seen a purple duck, then according to you you're already rationally justified in claiming that all ducks are non-purple. So why bother checking, sinc e you've already figured it out "rationally" in advance? [14:49] but THAT IS A PRESUPPOSITION!!!!!!!!! there is no evidence for that!!! [14:49] Junkyman, please don't shout. [14:50] Alcuin, tell me something. Are you being silly just for fun or are you serious. [14:50] sorry, but i needed to for effect. :) [14:50] anyone want to take a shot at my question? [14:51] What is your question? [14:51] Action: Alcuin is being quite serious. If people want to throw around the claim that they're rational, they had better be able to back it up with a cogent account of rationality. [14:51] Shoot, madcow. What's on your mind? [14:52] How about accepting that naturalism includes rationality and logic within it's nice neat package? I have no difficulty with that. [14:52] Boozer: So you have no difficulty with the claim that laws of logic are material things? [14:53] wow...18 secs for a ping! Anyway..my question arises from an encounter the other night when a person I was chatting with made the assertion that Jesus didn't really suffer since He knew ahead of time that He would be resurrected. I was wondering just what you would say to such a claim. [14:53] Action: Alcuin wonders whether Boozer will point to a law of logic, so we can all see it. [14:53] you know, we seem to be distracted from my argument here... boozer did you have an actual refutation of it or just another illogical presupposition?? [14:53] Here they are treated as add-ons to some stripped down model. [14:53] Alcuin, not material things. Governing equations. You know like thermodynamics. [14:53] madcow: He knew he'd be resurrected but that doesn't mean it didn't hurt!!! [14:53] madcow: I went to the dentist once. I knew that novacaine wouldn't affect me for this particular procedure. I alse knew that it'd be over after a few hours. Still, I suffered. [14:54] that's what I said [14:54] Boozer: So the world you're positing isn't naturalism after all, is it. [14:54] I agree...but this person was very persistent that it was not [14:54] "real" suffering [14:54] Madcow: has this person ever been crucified? [14:54] You don't have to convince me... [14:54] Naturalism encompasses logic and rationality. [14:55] madcow: just remember, it was Jesus' perfectness up until death that allowed for our salvation, not the degree of "suffering". [14:55] I would assume not...but I doubt that that was his point [14:55] Boozer: In naturalism, all that exists is extended in space [i.e., material]. If logic exists in naturalism, then logic is extended in space [material]. So you should be able to point to it. [14:55] agreed [14:56] Action: Alcuin points out to Boozer that just saying so doesn't make it so. "Naturalism includes logic because it does" [14:56] Alcuin, you have abridged what naturalism is. [14:56] boozer: what exactly was your refutation to my above argument?? we seem to be a bit forgetful here. :) [14:57] Of course pointing it out doesn't make it so. I was merely summarizing my earlier point. [14:57] Good point, Junkyman. Madcow: What pays for sin in the atonement of Christ is that Christ takes on the punishment for the sins of others. God dictates what counts as punishment, and death is the key, not suffering up to the poin t of death. [14:57] those are good points, I thank you...any more thoughts? I think his problem was more a desire to reject Jesus' atonement more than a hard disbelief in the suffering [14:57] Boozer: If you think I have abridged naturalism, suggest an alternative. [14:57] Junkyman, when your question scrolled off the screen in the midst of the "suffering" discussion it was lost. [14:58] Alcuin, allow naturalism to include laws of physics and logic. [14:58] Boozer: Are you suggesting that in naturalism, everything that exists is material, except for one class of things, namely laws [of logic, nature, etc] ? [14:58] JJJade (SLIMOOSE@www-20-92.gnn.com) joined #apologetics. [14:58] JJJade (SLIMOOSE@www-20-92.gnn.com) left #apologetics. [14:58] I made the point that it is much the same as a transaction (i.e. what makes something "yours" when you buy it?") God said, "this justice I will require...thi s atonement I will accept" in effect. [14:58] Alcuin, for in naturalism our thoughts are controlled by chemical processes, therefore they must be a part of naturalism. [14:58] could you do me a big favor and scroll it up a sec and find where we left off?? you had made a statement that you seemed to think was a refutation when it was bringing in an illogical presupposition. [14:59] Boozer: Fascinating! What is the *rational* basis for allowing *some* abstract [non-material] things into one's worldview, but not allowing *other* abstract things into it? [14:59] Junkyman, you're probably thinking that my inclusion of these natural laws is a presupposition. [14:59] boozer: if thoughts are based on chemicals then how can you trust them to be accurate pictures of truth? [15:00] the rational basis is that it works and is cohesive and doesn't introduce unnecessary entities. [15:00] madcow: It is not only much the same as a transaction. It is a transaction. God made a contract with his people, of which one of the stipulations was that sin would entail punishment. [15:00] Juny, we've been throgh this. They are consistent over time. [15:01] the rational basis is that it works?!? like i said above, inferences to prove inferences is a circular argument. [15:01] agreed...I didn't mean to discount the fact of it being in actuality a transaction...it just sounds so businesslike...kinda wooden in those terms you know..? [15:01] Boozer: That's an *arbitrary* basis, not a rational basis. After all, for any proposed abstract thing T that someone might say you should add to your collection of admissible abstract things, **how** do you judge whether T is "cohesive", whether T "works" and whether it is "unnecessary"? [15:01] Junkyman, I don't think you know what a circular argument is. [15:02] Boozer: Thoughts are wildly inconsistent over time. Look around! [15:02] madcow: Yup. Sounds like your answer to your friend was fine. [15:02] inferences as seen in naturalism are under question here, and you are trying to use inferences to prove them true. that is circular. [15:03] Boozer: IF you use logic to judge among other abstractions, then you're begging the question. If you don't use logic to judge among them, then you're abrogating logic. Those are the choices on the basis you've described. [15:03] Alcuin, it's not arbitrary. Each proposed law must work in all situations. [15:04] Thanks..I needed the reassurance. He was so adamant that I wondered if there was a much better answer than I was offering. [15:04] Boozer: But you can't *check* *all* situations! [15:04] I have been waiting for a chance to meet some of you folks in here and have checked the last week several times but no one has been home. [15:04] all being those situations which you can check. [15:04] or can be checked by others. [15:05] madcow: The issue can be explained much more thoroughly, of course. And it *can* be established that Christ really suffered. However, you're friend doesn't sound open to discussion on the issue. [15:05] that's what I figured [15:05] Boozer: So then, logic only applies to the situations you've personally looked into! Rationality vindicated?? [15:05] Got any suggestions for reading material on the subject? [15:06] Alcuin, are you a lawyer? [15:06] other than the Bible, of course [15:06] Elysium (clayton@RED.SEAS.UPENN.EDU) joined #apologetics. [15:06] yo [15:06] ho [15:06] hi elysium! [15:06] hello Elysium [15:06] brb [15:07] _The Death of Christ_ by John Owen. [15:07] Boozer: No, I'm not a lawyer. [15:07] Hi, Elysium [15:07] Ok, now let's hit what's wrong with presuppositional apologetics [15:07] brb [15:07] Alcuin, the reason I ask is that your questions are very demanding in tone. [15:08] Alcuin, as a presuppositionalist, can you answer a few questions for m? [15:08] well, whatever... anyway, i don't see how one can see that order out of nothing makes any sense at all when that's the opposite of pretty much all observations [15:08] me even. [15:08] Yes, maybe Elysium can set you straight on allowing logic into naturalism. [15:08] Boozer: I'm just laying the questions out directly, for the sake of clarity and rationality. No cross examination intended [though pun intended] :) [15:08] that's untrue. Crystal formation, spontaneous particle generation in a vaccuum, fractals [15:08] Elysium: I disavow the label "presuppositionalist". [15:08] However, I'd be pleased to discuss the issue with you. [15:09] sorry elysium, MOST observations. [15:09] Alcuin: Ok. Do you believe that the laws of identity and non-contradiction are necessary pre-requisites for definition? [15:10] For definition? No. For clear, stable, or cogent definition? Yes. [15:10] Alcuin: You mentioned this earlier and I'm not clear how this works. If identity and non-contradiction are not accepted as true, how would one define something? [15:11] The American heritage dictionary defines definition as, "1. The act of stating a precise meaning or significance." [15:11] Elysium: Arbitrarily, and with no claims to consistency, objective denotation, and intelligibility. [15:12] Elysium: Dictionaries are useful summaries of usage. They rarely include the precise definitions used in specialized fields, such as philosophy or ballet. [15:12] Alcuin: That understanding of definition is non-standard. I'm not asking if letters from the alphabet can be concatenated in the absence of logic, but if *definition* is possible. [15:12] Elysium: I'll work with whichever notion of definition pleases you. [15:13] Alcuin: So I think from the beginning you should probably alter your notion of definition. Even polymorphic definition requires identity as they are intelligible and precise in more than one context. [15:13] Let's say arguendo that the only definition worth talking about is definition that requires identity and non-contradiction. [15:13] Alcuin: That wont do. A definition which does not assume identty and non-contradiction ceases to be a definition. [15:13] Elysium: I'm not talking polymorphic. I'm talking whistling in the dark. But, as I said, let's work with something less difficult. [15:14] Alcuin: Whistling in the dark may be just that, but it certainly isn't definition. [15:14] Frisbee (you@mw2-218.mwtech.com) joined #apologetics. [15:14] Alcuin: Like I said, in asking whether definition ispredicated upon identity and non-contradiction I do not mean to imply that any concatenation of letters is a definition. [15:14] Action: Alcuin notes that **mere** quibbles over whether "definition" means x or y are hardly worth anyone's time. Let's decide which definition we mean to discuss, and move ahead, shall we? [15:15] Elysium: As I said, if that definition of "definition" suits you, I have no objection. [15:15] Frisbee (you@mw2-218.mwtech.com) left #apologetics. [15:15] Alcuin: So, we can proceed allowing definition to have meaning. I believe we have dismissed your first objection to my rebuttal to the transcendental argument. Definition is contingent upon the laws of identity and non-contradi ction. An attempt at formi [15:16] Alcuin: ng a "trivial case" of definition fails in that it does not satisfy the meaning as it is either used in everyday practice or in philosophy. [15:17] Alcuin: Now, in regards to the claim that god's nature provides the only "possible" ground for logic. [15:17] Elysium: [a] you have not offered a rebuttal to the transcendental argument, as far as I know; [b] the everyday practice of using some denotations and not others cannot in the nature of the case prove a thing. However, [c] if you think you have a rebuttal, let's see it. [15:17] Alcuin: How do you verify the claim that "god's nature" is the only suitable ground for logic? What do you mean by that? [15:18] Alcuin: Now remember, since we are talking about what you consider the basis for logic, you are not permitted to use "logic" in your answer. [15:18] Elysium: For the sake of clarity in our discussion, note: you have identified two issues: identity and god's nature. Shall we take them one at a time? Are you under the impression that you've made a point about identity that som ehow damages the transcendental argument? [15:18] Seven (blah@cadc47.cadvision.com) joined #apologetics. [15:19] Seven (blah@cadc47.cadvision.com) left #apologetics. [15:19] hiya seven [15:19] seeya seven [15:19] Alcuin: Let's split the question up again. How do you verify the claim that god's nature is the only suitable ground for logic? [15:19] By retorsion [15:19] seeya, i'm not academic enough for this one (yet!) [15:19] Junkyman (jgiesbrec@ left #apologetics. [15:20] Alcun: I'm unfamiliar with that term. What does it mean? [15:20] It means a kind of indirect argument, from the impossibility of consistently denying the premise being asserted. [15:20] Alcuin: But that presupposes identity and non-contradiction, which you are attempting to establish. [15:21] Elysium: Epistemic circularity [which is distinct from logical circularity, btw] is not a problem with respect to establishing transcendental premises. Didn't you know that? [15:21] Alcuin: An argument to absurdity if you will, makes no sense unless we accept identity and non-contradiction. But if you are using these to establish god's nature as the only suitable ground for identity and non-contradiction, I believe we are approaching [15:21] the fallacy of question begging. [15:22] Elysium: Then you, unfortunately, believe incorrectly. [15:22] Alcuin: does this mean you have no satisfactory method of verifying the claim that god's nature is the only suitable ground for logic? [15:22] Question begging is when premises in an argument are assumed for the sake of providing a direct demonstration of those same premises. [15:22] Alcuin: You find yourself int he same quandry you accuse atheists of. You posit a nature of god as the only suitable ground for logic, and in doing so presuppose logic (i.e., that god's nature has identity). [15:23] No, Elysium, this means that I have a satisfactory method of verifying the claim that god's nature is the only suitable ground for logic, and that the method is ipso facto indirect, since the discussion deals with transcendentals. [15:24] Elysium: You are correct that both atheists and theists presuppose certain things in order to even have a worldview. Why you consider this *problematic* rather than *structurally descriptive* is somewhat mysterious. It's a commo nplace of 20th c. epistemology, that you can get nowhere without starting somewhere. [15:24] Frisbee (you@mw2-218.mwtech.com) joined #apologetics. [15:25] Frisbee (you@mw2-218.mwtech.com) left #apologetics. [15:25] The fact that a starting place is always necessary does not at all tell against the notion that one can rationally discriminate among competing starting places. [15:26] Alcuin: Which is pretty much why theism must be rejected if one is to be consistent. [15:26] Are you confusing logical circularity with epistemic circularity? [15:26] Alcuin: No, not at all; axioms must be had. I accept as axiomatic, logic. you do not argue against logic, but posit a unevidenced being as necessarily existent to provide justification for my axioms. [15:27] On the contrary, Elysium. If one wants to be consistent, and there are several possible starting places for one's worldview-formation, then one must ask the transcendental question: which of these starting places provides for eve n the possibility of consistency?! [15:27] Alcuin: A starting place which posits a mythical entity is questionable at best. [15:28] Elysium: You accept logic as axiomatic, yet you reject the other constituents of a worldview in which logic makes sense. Thus, you are left with an inconsistent starting place. You want the wheels, and the wind in your hair, but you don't believe in internal combustion! [15:28] Action: Alcuin notes for the record that on Elysium's basis, "logic" is as "mythical" as God. [15:29] Alcuin: Not really; the theistic hypothesis doesn't satisfy an actually existent need. Logic is not transcendant. [15:29] Action: Boozer scribbles out the fallacy Alcuin noted in the record. [15:29] Alcuin: But in either case, it certainly doesn't require the *christian* deity's existence. [15:29] Oh, you don't think that logic is transcendental? Or do you really mean not transcendent? The two words are different you know. [15:29] W (cservice@undernet.org) left irc: ERROR: Received SIGSEGV :( [15:29] Alcuin: There are no transcendental concepts in the reified sense you are thinking of them. [15:30] Elysium: Oh, you know what I'm thinking? :) Explain, please...especially the "reification" claim. [15:30] Alcuin: In either case, logic as it stands is a good deal more intelligible, even as axiomatic than "god's nature" a tripartite unity. [15:31] Action: Alcuin notes for the record that "transcendental" means "pertaining to the preconditions of intelligibility" while "transcendent" means "outside of temporal experience". [15:31] Alcuin: Logic is a human abstraction of properties of this universe. There is no *logic* in an actual sense; just as there is no *actually* existent logic; were even being capable of abstracting to die, logic would cease to exis t (though what it refers to [15:31] would continue). [15:32] Elysium: Trinity is no less logical than anything else. God is three in sense(a) and one in sense(b). As long as sense(a) and sense(b) are not the same sense, there's no logical problem. [15:32] Alcuin: The trinity argues that god is both three and one in regard to his person; the same sense. [15:32] Alcuin: Jesus is both mortal (human) and immortal; 2 exclusive states of being. [15:32] Elysium: Hmm. So you are actually willing to assert that logic is not actual, not something that exists. Is that logical? [15:33] Elysium: All Christian doctrines that seem mysterious can be formulated so as to satisfy logic. Does that surprise you? The question is not whether such is possible, but rather whether we must accept the propositions so specifie d. [15:34] Alcuin: Logic does not have an *actual* existence (save as configurations of neurons in the brain); it's a human abstraction. [15:34] Elysium: And have humans experienced all of the material universe, or only a tiny part? [15:34] Alcuin: i've read many attempts by christians to make 3 equal 1 in the same sense. [15:34] Elysium: Such christians do damage to their own worldview. You are right to object to that same-sense nonsense. [15:34] Alcuin: A very tiny part. [15:35] Elysium: And so at best, logic is an abstraction of just a tiny part of what's there? [15:35] Alcuin: Yet in order to satisfy the OT constraints that "the lord our god, the lord is one." [15:35] Alcuin: While maintaining the christ/deity + holy spirit equation, these attempts are necessary. [15:35] Alcuin: Either, in respect to his person, god is one, or god is three. But not both. [15:35] W (cservice@undernet.org) joined #apologetics. [15:35] Elysium: As I demonstrated above, Lord is one and Lord is three are not necessarily contradictory, though there's much we don't know about just how the senses(a and b) differ. [15:36] Mode change '+o W ' by channels2.undernet.org [15:36] Alcuin: In any case, occams' razor takes care of the transcendental argument. Neither of us rejects the conclusion, that logic is valid. [15:36] Alcuin: I accept the principles as axiomatic; you claim they are rooted in god's nature, which of course bars you from any knowledge *about* god's nature. [15:36] The doctrine of Christ can also be formulated in logically valid terms. Likewise the spirit. The fact that some christians {and some nonchristians} fail to do so doesn't tell against the doctrine.... [15:37] Alcuin: The doctrine of 3 in 1 in the same sense can not be logically valid. [15:37] Elysium: On the contrary, the claim that logic is rooted in God's nature is involved in the certainty of knowing something about God's nature. [15:37] Alcuin: It's a very simple objection, one which opponents of the trinity concept voiced. [15:37] Alcuin: There can be no knowledge outside of identity/non-contradiction. [15:38] Meanwhile, you assume that logic is axiomatic, yet it's an axiom that you admit is "unreal" "nonactual" merely an "abstraction" and one abstracted from a "very tiny" realm of experience. What kind of axiom is that? [15:38] Alcuin: You're shooting off your own foot; how do we verify that god's nature is in fact the ground for logic if we do not presuppose god's nature as having identity? [15:38] Alcuin: It leaves one open for all sorts of sundry claims; personal revelation (conflicting ones at that) becomes the only means by which we can gain information about this purported nature. [15:39] Alcuin: Which is pretty much the same as saying, "God exists because I believe god exists." [15:39] Elysium: And a nontheistic worldview cannot possibly account for identity and noncontradiction. From which it follows that logic is impossible without theistic premises in one's worldview. [15:39] Alcuin: That logic is not accounted for does not imply that logic can not *be*. [15:40] Alcuin returns to the basic anti-naturalist stance. [15:40] Elysium: As I mentioned above [and perhaps you should reflect on this at length, so the objection doesn't keep confusing you], presupposing the theistic frame of reference doesn't disallow the possibility of [a] verifying the nece ssity of that basis or [b] having knowledge about that basis. You are confusing logical circularity with epistemic circularity. [15:40] Alcuin: I agree with you, and hume in this regard; I can not verify the axioms of logic. [15:41] Alcuin: How exactly do you propose to verify any information about god's nature without *presupposing* that god's nature has identity? [15:41] Personal revelations at this time would be inconsistent with the Christian worldview, imo. [15:41] Alcuin: Many christian disagree, but that is neither here nor there. [15:41] Alcuin: I am not confusing epistemic circularity with logical circularity. Epistemological axioms *entail* logical axioms. [15:42] No, the fact that logic is not accounted for does not imply that logic cannot be. Exactly. You're following my argument now. Logic can be, *precisely* because the world isn't what the non-theistic worldview suggests! [15:42] Alcuin: The minute you step back behind logic, you enter unintelligibility. [15:42] Alcuin: no, if your argument is as you stated it before you concluded that logic is *impossible* in a non-theistic world *because a non-theistic worldview can not account for logic*. [15:43] Alcuin: But the conclusion does not follow from the premises; an unaccounted for concept does not imply anything at all about a worldview, save that in that worldview it is unaccounted for. [15:43] Yes. That's logically equivalent to my other phrasing of the claim. [15:44] Yes, in the worldview that denies theism, logic cannot be accounted for. Are you granting this? [15:44] Alcuin: No, I am saying that I am not currently able to account for it. [15:44] Alcuin: I am not saying that logic *can not be accounted for* without recourse to fantasy. [15:44] "not currently able" is waffling. I'm suggesting that it is impossible in principle, not merely unlikely. [15:45] Alcuin: But the suggestion certainly doesn't *necessarily* follow from the premise. [15:45] Alcuin: The leap from, "logic is not accounted for" to "logic can not be accounted for" is unwarranted. [15:45] If it is even the tiniest bit likely that a non-theistic worldview can account for logic, then show how. Otherwise [a] why do you use logic, and [b] why do you find such a worldview credible? [15:46] Elysium: I'm not making such a leap. As I said two comments ago, I'm arguing the stronger of those two claims. [15:46] Alcuin: how would you determine the probabilities in this instance? I'm interested in what paradigm you are using. [15:47] Elysium: It *does* so happen that you personally are unable to account for logic. I'm not suggesting that that leads to a principial rejection of non-theism. It does lead to the untenability of your personal version of nontheism at this time. However, I'm suggesting that non-theism as such is in the nature of the case unable to account for logic. [15:47] Alcuin: As to A) I use logic because I dislike the consequences of solipsism, and B) I find the alternative even less credible. To say that logic is accounted for by an unverifiable, unobservable, indeed unagreed upon by those w ho *do* believe in it, is t [15:47] o say that logic is *still* unaccounted for. [15:48] Elysium: But since your logic is an abstraction from a tiny range of experience, and isn't "actual" and "real" , your logic *is* solipsistic. No? [15:48] Alcuin: That isn't what you stated earlier; you stated that since logic is unaccounted for in a non-theistic worldview, logic can not exist in a non-theistic world view. I stated your argument twice, and you agreed that I satisf actorily described it. [15:49] Moreover, I'm not making the claim that you attempt to pin on me, namely that "logic is accounted for by an unverifiable" entity. [15:49] Alcuin: No, it allows me to communicate with other individuals who's range of experience is similar. Perhaps one day we will encounter a part of the universe who's structure does not require identity and non-contradiction. [15:49] Alcuin: Verification without logic does not exist; Verification requires *identity*, which means that any entity who provides the foundation for logic is *necessarily* unverifiable. [15:50] Alcuin: Which leads back to what I stated earlier; the transcendental "Argument" amounts to, "God exists because I believe god exists." [15:50] Elysium: If someone mugs you and takes your wallet, all he need do to justify himself is say, "Gee, Elysium, this must be one of those place/times where logic doesn't apply!" [15:50] Alcuin: That does not follow and is entirely irrelavent. [15:50] Elysium: Likewise, if someone wants to disagree with you in your world, he need only say he's using other laws of logic! Your world, as you describe it, provides for no rational means of settling such issues! [15:51] VitamnTom (VitaminTo@dial-15.r2.gaagst.InfoAve.Net) joined #apologetics. [15:51] VitamnTom (VitaminTo@dial-15.r2.gaagst.InfoAve.Net) left #apologetics. [15:51] Alcuin: I make no bones about it; I am currently unable to account for the laws of logic. Indeed until some other medium besides empiricism becomes available to me, I suspect I will always be unable to account for it [15:51] Elysium: You say ""Verification without logic does not exist; Verification requires *identity*, which means that any entity who provides the foundation for logic is *necessarily* unverifiable."" Elysium, this is a notorious non-sequitur. [15:51] Elysium: You are a man of faith; I see that. [15:52] Alcuin: Then tell me, how do you propose to have knowledge about the nature of god, unless god's nature has identity? and unless god's nature is not not-god's nature. [15:52] Elysium: It happens that there is some other means than empiricism at your disposal, insofar as you have transactions with non-material things that are not apprehended by the five senses.... [15:52] Alcuin: We're dealing with the necessary ramifications of the statement, "logic is unaccounted for in a non-theistic worldview." It does not follow from this that logic can not exist in a non- theistic world. [15:53] Alcuin: What other means are at my disposal and how would we verify it? [15:53] Alcuin: Even my contact with the bible requires my senses. [15:53] madcow (wtburns@dialin17.mwtech.com) left irc: [15:54] Elysium: This really seems difficult for you, and I'm not sure why. I've tried to be clear, but I'll reiterate: I'm *not* merely claiming "logic is unaccounted for in a nontheistic worldview"-- Get it? I'm claiming that logic "cannot be accounted for in a nontheistic worldview". The claims are distinct. [15:54] Elysium: I'm not suggesting that we not depend on the senses. I'm suggesting that it is nonsense to suggest that we depend *only* on the senses. [15:54] Alcuin: In fact, according to your own statement about our very limited experience with the universe, it shouldn't be suprising that my non-theism does not account for logic; there are plenty of places we haven't looked. [15:54] Alcuin: And I am saying to suggest that we depend on something else is a suggestion eyond verification. [15:54] Elysium: Exactly. Your nontheism is nonrational. [15:55] Alcuin: Not at all. Now, how do you propose to prove your statement that, "logic cannot be accounted for in a non-theistic worldview."? [15:55] Elysium: By verification, are you depending on the early 20th c. notion of empirical verification? [you're not, are you?] [15:55] Alcuin: th euniverse may be the result of the activity of finite, but very advanced beings. [15:56] Alcuin: It may well all be a hallucination, though I doubt this. In any case, I'm curious as to how you arrive at the conclusion that logic *can* not (as opposed to is not) be accounted for without recourse to deities? [15:56] Dysani (Dysani.tn@slip10.rnet.com) joined #APOLOGETICS. [15:56] There will necessarily be transcendental preconditions to the activity of those "advanced beings". So? [15:57] Dysani (Dysani.tn@slip10.rnet.com) left #APOLOGETICS. [15:57] Alcuin: How will you verify that statement? That there are necessary "transcendental preconditions"? [15:57] Elysium: My claim is, again, not that which you attribute to me. It's much more specific. I'm claiming that logic presupposes specifically the Christian doctrine of God. No other deities come into it. [15:57] Alcuin: Oddly enough, it could even be accounted for by an infinite, but long dead deity. [15:58] Elysium: Since you're tossing the term around so much, why don't you define "verify" ? That'll contribute to the clarity of our discussion. [15:58] 2. To determine or test the truth or accuracy of, as by comparison, [15:58] investigation, or reference: [15:58] ``conduct experiments to verify a hypothesis. [15:59] American heritage dictionary, quote is from that is. [15:59] I maintain that your "justification of logic" is beyond verification; and according to your own reasoning, this lack of verification indicates the impossibility of god's nature as actually exis tent. [15:59] As for the numerous hypotheses that you're offering: so? It's trivial to generate hypothetical scenarios. The question is whether any of them comports with reality. Specifically, do the suggested worldviews provide the precondi tions of logic,etc. So, as long as you choose to crank 'em out, I'll be glad to refute 'em, but there's little point. [16:00] Alcuin: And I maintain that as logic provides the basis for definition, any "precondition" can be at best undefined. In your case it not only is undefined, it's non-existent. [16:01] Alcuin: In the very least, if someone were to posit the necessity of finite, but very advance universe builders, we could at least hope for some sort of interaction to verify the claims about the finite but advanced universe crea tor's nature. [16:01] Elysium: just as I suspected. You're hung up on the notion of "verification" as an empirical procedure, and you think it's particularly telling that abstract beings, like logic, cannot be empir ically verified. So? Not all knowledge can be empirically verified because not all known things are material. However, some knowledge is true, justified belief in non-material things [such as laws of logic]. Are you under the impression that al [16:02] If you mean "God is unverifiable" because God is not empirically verifiable, then that's [a] obvious, and [b] irrelevant. [16:02] Alcuin: Can you tell me of a non-material (neither energy nor matter) thing? [16:02] Alcuin: And explain how we verify it's existence? [16:02] Sure: Laws of logic. [16:02] Sure: by retorsion. [16:02] Alcuin: The laws of logic do not have an actual existence. [16:02] So you claim, and your claim leads to irrationality and solipsism. [16:03] Alcuin: correction, they do not have an actual existence save in the neurons of intelligent beings. [16:03] Alcuin: Not at all; it accepts concepts as what they are, concepts. There isn't a transcendental plane where a sort of metaphysical "form of logic" exists. [16:03] Alcuin: not if existence is to have any intelligible meaning. [16:04] Alcuin: For instance, there is no *thing* that is two. The number two is an abstraction. [16:04] Elysium, perhaps you didn't realize that from a contradictory proposition P, any other proposition whatsoever can be logically inferred. So, if you deny that logic is "actual", if you relativiz e logic to individual human activity, then you have abandoned rationality altogether. [16:04] Alcuin: The letter 2 isn't the *concept* but rather a way of communicating the concept. [16:04] Alcuin: I have not relativized logic; the concept is a valid abstraction of fundamental structures in the universe as far as we know. [16:05] Alcuin: Geocentrism is a invalid abstraction of the structure of the solar ystem. [16:05] Elysium: Sadly, the notion that concepts are material configurations of neurological transmitters in the brain eliminates the possibility of universal concepts. No two people have the same brain. Therefore, each to her own. [16:05] Alcuin: I agree with that; no two concepts are the same, though they may convey the same information. [16:06] Elysium: You preach that logic as a concept is a valid abstraction of fundamental structures in the universe, as far as we know. Do you not see how that undermines rationality? [16:06] Alcuin: Since logic is an abstraction from the physical universe, and the beings in question are both abstracting from the same physical universe, they can convey the same information. [16:06] Alcuin: not at all. It does not undermine rationality at all; it puts rationlity in proper perspective. There's nothing mystical at all about rationality. [16:06] Alcuin: [16:07] *How* does one determine the correct [rather than incorrect] method of abstraction? How does one determine whether two abstractions from the same data have the same qualities *as concepts*? [16:07] Alcuin: That's where testing comes in. [16:07] Alcuin: Although apparently you have some way of testing concepts which are beyond our senses. [16:07] Elysium: On the basis you have described [which smacks of the pop-philosophy of Ayn Rand, btw], rationality is not merely nonmystical--it is entirely impossible. [16:07] Alcuin: I'd be interested in "Seeing" this method, though I suspect it is conjectre on your part. [16:08] And you apparently have no way of testing concepts whatsoever. [16:08] Alcuin: Not at all. TRanscendental rationality is impossible, because transcendental concepts *do not actually exist* (save as neuron configurations). [16:08] That's the prejudice you preach, I realize. [16:08] Alcuin: of course I do. The concept that the sun revolves around the earth can be tested. [16:08] Alcuin: I think I'm understanding what it is that lies behind your theism. You believe that "transcendental concepts" have an actual existence. [16:08] But you admit that the conclusions provided by testing are limited to the instances tested! [16:09] Boozer (scott@daphne.gfdi.fsu.edu) left irc: Ping timeout for Boozer[daphne.gfdi.fsu.edu] [16:09] Alcuin: No, I do not. The conclusions provided by testing are limited by instances in which those conclusions are tested as false. [16:09] Alcuin: So I'm not *really* afraid that in some part of the universe, F != MA, though I allow for the possibility. [16:10] So then, it you test 100,000 ducks and they're all white, are you rationally justified in saying that all ducks are white? [16:10] Alcuin: Not at all, and that's a pretty pathetic straw man. [16:10] It's virtually a quote from your earlier comments. [16:10] Alcuin: If I test 100,000 ducks, and they all are carbon-based, then I have good reasons to conclude that ducks are carbon based. [16:11] Alcuin: should I ever encounter a non-carbon based duck (extremely unlikely), then I will revise my conclusion. [16:11] Alcuin: Finite beings don't have the means to verify infinite concepts. [16:11] Boozer (scott@daphne.gfdi.fsu.edu) joined #apologetics. [16:11] Then if someone tells you that there are non-carbon-based ducks, do you [a] say, "no there aren't" or [b] tests every thing to determine whether it's a non-carbon-based duck or not? [16:11] Alcuin: There just isn't enough time. This precludes our ability to rationally justify any concept we believe in as transcendant. [16:12] Is this being logged by either of you? [16:12] Alcuin: Well, I ask them to produce a non-carbon based duck, and I conduct some tests on it. [16:12] On the basis you suggest, there isn't enough time to rationally justify any concept whatsoever@ [16:12] And if they don't produce one, then you don't believe in it, right? [16:13] Alcuin: No, not at all. We can rationally justify concepts and conclude that "this concept is very probably true everywhere"; but how would we ever conclude that a concept is necessarily trans cendent? WE're finite creatures, there'd never be enough time [16:13] check. [16:13] Alcuin: I lack belief in the claim, "non-carbon based ducks exist" until confronted with compelling evidence to the contrary. [16:13] Alcuin: Which is, btw, my stance with regards to your claim, "god exists". [16:13] Time is irrelevant to confirming the existence of transcendent things! Transcendent by definition is logically distinct from considerations of time. Confused? [16:14] Alcuin: And I'm saying that if that's the case, the as finite beings, transcendant concepts are off-limits rationally. [16:14] Elysium: Good, we're about to see the irrationality of your position: Do you believe that the law of logic (A v ~A) exists? [16:14] Alcuin: We may speculate or conjecture about them, but we have no way of rationally knowing them. [16:14] Alcuin: As an object? no. [16:14] That doesn't follow at all. [16:15] i.e., you claim that transcendent concepts are off limits rationally is a non-sequitur. Nevertheless, let's stick with laws of logic for a minute. [16:15] However, I would point out that christian theism does not entail non-contradicton. An eternal ever-present and immortal deity can be both alive and dead. [16:16] Alcuin: If transcendent concepts are "actually existing infinites" then finite beings are unable to rationally verify their truth. [16:16] When you make any judgment whatsoever, do you use the law of noncontradiction, (A&~A) ? [16:16] Alcuin: There isn't enouh time; suppose the purportedly infinite concept is only true up until th elast picosecond of existence? (a pico second which can never happen if the concept is transcendental). [16:17] Elysium: That's sheer assertion, and there's no reason at all to believe it! Finitude doesn't preclude knowledge of abstract entities. Nevertheless, **I propose that you not duck the issue of logic** [16:17] When you make any judgment whatsoever, do you use the law of noncontradiction, (A&~A) ? [16:17] Alcuin: That question is a little general. Do you mean in practice, or technically? [16:17] [16:18] or from my profession A && !A [16:18] :) [16:18] Elysium is a programmer? [16:18] yep. [16:18] kewl [16:18] Now, in practice do you use (Av~A) ? [16:19] Alcuin: Everyday? I dont have any choice. I have no experience with contradictory events. [16:19] But that begs the question. How would you know whether you had experience with contradictory events? [16:20] By applying the little "law" that you have "abstracted" from those same events? [16:20] Alcuin: How is that begging the question? [16:20] Why not use this law instead: (A&~A) ? [16:20] Alcuin: non-contradiction is a precondition for knowledge. [16:20] Why should anyone in a naturalist world believe such a claim? [16:21] Alcuin: I accept it as an axiom. I state that it comes frome xperience because I dont begin my life with experiences. [16:21] eh? [16:21] You state that it comes from experience, but you don't begin your life with experiences. [16:22] So, you start your life with no logical tools? [16:22] Alcuin: The law of non-contradiction is incorporated into what I "know" as the result of experience. I am not born with the concept of non-contradiction in my brain. [16:23] Alcuin: I experience *reality* which does not entail contradiction (since contradiction is a concept not an actually existent thing) [16:23] Then some sense-data happen to you. If you say that they're noncontradictory experiences and therefore infer non-contradiction from them, that's circular. You need the law to determine that the experiences are non-contradictory in the first place! But if you grant that the experiences may be contradictory, then you never gain access to the law you desire. [16:24] If you don't have the law in advance, the experiences are just so much white noise. [16:24] Alcuin: from that experience I conclude that objects can not be both a and not-a. [16:24] Why? [16:24] Alcuin: That doesn't follow at all. Precisely because it ignores the temporal nature of the problem. *I personally* did not abstract the law of non-contradiction until sufficient events occured for me to abstract it. [16:25] But Elysium, the process of abstraction involves the use of the law you're claiming to abstract from those experiences! Otherwise, the process itself could be erratic! [16:26] [16:26] Alcuin: *sigh*. The process of abstraction which leads to me *stating* the conclusion (the law of non-contradiction) entails the use of non-contradiction (not explicitly though). [16:27] So you deny that the process of abstraction which leads to your *conceptualizing* the law of non-contradiction does not itself have to be a non-contradictory process? [16:27] Alcuin: I am not claiming that the law of non-contradiction is valid *because* of my experience, but that I formulate it via experience. [16:27] Yet such a claim is blatantly question-begging. [16:28] Alcuin: not at all. If I were claiming that non-contradiction is valid because I experience non-contradictory reality, *that* would be begging the question. [16:28] You claim that you start without the law, that you have a few experiences, and then through the magic of "abstraction" you somehow infer the law from those experiences, without reference to the law itself. [16:28] Alcuin: But I do not exist in a metaphysical sense; I am a finite being. I dont start off with all of my concepts elaborated. [16:29] Elysium: No, that would be a contradiction. [16:29] Alcuin: No, I claim that I start without an elaboration of the law. [16:29] Elysium: But does the law hold apart from your having any elaboration of it? [16:30] Alcuin: the law of contradiction does not exist apart from an elaboration of it, though the physical structure of the universe on which the concept is based, does. [16:30] Alcuin: rather, the law of non-contradiction. [16:30] On which the concept is based===question begging. [16:31] Does the law exist independent of minds? If so, then it's not relative to particular minds after all. If not, then how does your mind happen upon that law and not it's negation? [16:32] Alcuin: You really don't get this one do you? What we formalize as the law of non-contradiction is the result of the *actual* structure of the universe. The "law" as it will has no existence independent of minds. [16:32] Alcuin: The universe however, does have an existence independent of minds. Minds which come into being in that universe will opt for solipsism or will abstract the law of non-contradiction. [16:32] There are, after all, numerous "laws of logic" that are inconsistent with one another and are all vying for your attention. Meanwhile, you cannot appeal mystically to the "str ucture of the universe" when [a] you have extremely limited experience of it, and [b] your notion of the universe can't determine the law, if the law is what determines your notion of the universe. [16:33] Elysium: Or both, apparently. [16:33] Alcuin: Not at all. I maintain that the law of non-contradiction does not exist apart from brains (or minds if you will). [16:34] No, Elysium, I don't *get* how you think you know the "actual structure of the universe", which , by the way, "does have an existence independent of minds". Sounds pretty arbitrary from here. [16:34] Alcuin: Our axioms are just different. I begin with the primacy of the universe. You begin with the primacy of a deity. [16:34] Beginning with the primacy of the universe, it is impossible to give a cogent rational account of the possibility of knowledge, as you have demonstrated. [16:35] Alcuin: Not at all, there is no *leap of faith* that is required. Knowledge is possible because it is abstracted from the axiom, "The universe is primary". [16:35] And now we're back where we started. [16:35] Alcuin: You may account for knowledge by adding th addition of a deity; You certainly aren't arguing that the universe does not exist. Occams razor takes care of the rest. [16:35] Elysium: Do you have a way out of your logical circle? logic is inferred from consistent nature, and we know that consistent nature is consistent because our logic tells us so? [16:36] Alcuin, I hope you're logging this and pass it on to profg for the web site. I want to see how it comes out. [16:36] later fellas. [16:36] Boozer (scott@daphne.gfdi.fsu.edu) left #apologetics. [16:36] Alcuin: Do you have a way out of your logical circle? Logic is inferred from the "nature of god" and our knowledge of that nature is contingent on logic being valid. [16:37] You seem to have a fuzzy notion of Occam's razor. It dictates that one eliminate premises that are unnecessary to the construction of the case. Clearly, the elimination of the theistic premise in worldview construction leads to self-contradiction [despite veneration of logic]. So Occam's Razor would seem to support me on this. :_ [16:37] By, Boozer! [16:37] Alcuin: You say potato, I say potato. The universe is the axiom upon which conceptual abstractions "logic" are bsed. [16:37] based even. [16:37] Alcuin: Not at all. The premise unnecessary to the construction of knowledge is a god. [16:37] Elysium: As it happens, I do have a way out of the circle. [16:38] Elysium: You keep asserting that the universe is the basis for the conceptual abstraction "logic", yet you have no independent means of verifying that the universe implies your preferred "logic." Ring aroung the rosy.... [16:38] Alcuin: It simply wont do to shift the problem of verifying logic (a nonsensical term if I ever saw one) to verifying god's nature. [16:39] Alcuin: You keep asserting that god is the basis for logic, yet have no independent means of verifying that either god exists or that god's existence entails logic. [16:39] Elysium: So, you figure that all those philosophers of logic have been wasting their time asking these questions? [16:39] Alcuin: Not at all. [16:40] Elysium: You say ""Alcuin: You keep asserting that god is the basis for logic, yet have no independent means of verifying that either god exists or that god's existence entails logic" " Yet this is false. [16:40] Alcuin: Perhaps one day knowledge will be possible without identity/non-contradiction as pre-requisites; until then, the question is beyond verification. [16:40] Alcuin: It's analogou to asking what color my dog is, I dont have a dog to have a color. "Verify" has no meaning without logic. [16:42] And since neither of us is questioning the presence of knowledge, let's do away with the unnecessary construct, "god" (unless you would rather do away with the concept of universe) [16:42] In a worldview that [a] allows for the existence of abstract beings, the universality and normativity of logic are not problematized by the relativistic circle that plagues your view; [b] arguments by retorsion are possible, becau se there is an objective method [viz. logic] for testing their validity, and [c] sense data and abstraction from them is non-arbitrary and verifiable, because of the existence of laws that affirm continuity of ex [16:43] What exactly is an abstract being? [16:43] Elysium: You say [charmingly] ""And since neither of us is questioning the presence of knowledge, let's do away with the unnecessary construct, "god""" Yet, we are not at all agreed as to *what* knowledge is. We're not on common ground here, as if there were some "knowledge" apart from the presupposition of a God who makes such things intelligible. Why pretend to neutrality? [16:43] An abstract being is a being not extended in space/time. [16:44] The presupposition of god is exactly what is in question. Knowledge exists apart from the existence of god. [16:44] Wrong, imo [16:45] Which is where we diverge. Knowledge doesn't need a god, and certainly doesn't need an omnipotent, currently living, god. [16:45] And the inability to give an account of why one uses logic or how one knows [apart from reference to theism] is symptomatic of the soundness of the claim I've made. [16:45] I can form abstractions about the physical world around me; some of those abstractions will be valid (that is, my internal subjective representation of the world corresponds to an actually existent state of affairs). [16:46] To back up *your* claim, all you need do is provide *one* cogent non-theistic account of the possibility of knowledge. Where's your purple, non-carbon-based duck, Elysium? [16:47] Alcuin: But your use of the term knowledge differs from mine. You believe that knowledge has a transcendental existence, which I see no reason to belive. [16:47] Elysium: How would you *ever* know that your subjective construct corresponds to the external state of affairs, since on your basis, you have no access to that external state of affairs except what's mediated by your construct? [16:47] Alcuin: So all you need to do is provide one cogent example of a deity (take your pick, christian or otherwise) and that' deity's nature, and we're all set. [16:47] The reason to believe that knowledge has preconditions is that denial of that claim leads to the inability to avoid contradiction in accounting for knowledge. [16:48] Alcuin: I agree, knowledge does have preconditions. I am in no way denying that statement. I deny that god is a necessary precondition (since god is unverifiable). [16:48] Alcuin: The preconditions for knowledge *are*. That's just the way it is, if you will. [16:49] What do you take to be the preconditions of knowledge? [16:49] I have the physical universe, my senses, and a bunch of other folks to collaborate with. That's all it takes. [16:49] Alcuin: Now there you go asking me what color my dog is. The preconditions of knowledge *are*. [16:49] MrBell (Micah@ppp109.ihug.co.nz) joined #apologetics. [16:50] No answer, huh.... [16:50] Alcuin: How do you propose to have knowledge of the preconditions of knowledge? [16:50] You say: ""The preconditions for knowledge *are*. That's just the way it is, if you will."" "I'm right because it's just that way," you say! [16:50] Alcuin: By positing a deity that stands in the capacity of a metaphysical warehouse? [16:51] Alcuin: Pretty much. If you've got gripes about the way the universe is, you certainly have the option of adjusting your membership in it. [16:51] Elysium: Knowledge of preconditions comes by justifying claims that such and such is a precondition of knowledge. The logical method employed is retorsion: denial of certain claims [and not others] leads to a scenario where a non -contradictory account of knowledge cannot be given. [16:51] Alcuin: It's a nonsensical question. One which can have no answer because it has no form. [16:52] Alcuin: Ok, let's take that sentence apart. [16:52] MrBell (Micah@ppp109.ihug.co.nz) left #apologetics. [16:52] Alcuin: "Knowledge"(knowledge 1) of preconditions comes by justifying claims that such and such is a precondition of "knowledge"(knowledge 2). [16:52] Elysium: I'm quite con tent with the way the universe is. I'm quite content with those things that I cannot deny while maintaining my rationality. I'm even content that you're able psychologically to live in the world the way it is, even though what you say about that world is not cogent. [16:52] Alcuin: What is the definition of that odd concatenation "Knowledge"(knowledge 1)? [16:54] For some person P and for some proposition Q, P has "knowledge" of Q if and only if [a] Q is true, and [b] P believes that Q, and [c] P is warranted in believing that Q. [16:54] That's the definition of knowledge. [16:54] Alcuin: I'm not asking for a definition of what it means to *have knowledge* or a description of the set of individuals who possess knwledge. [16:54] Alcuin: I'm asking for a definition of the odd concatenation "knwledge"(knowledge 1)? [16:54] "knowledge" = true, warranted belief. [16:55] Does that paraphrase help? [16:55] Alcuin: Not really; since that entails that I have knowledge of what is true (via my senses, which you greatly under-rate) and warranted. [16:55] Alcuin:But since we're defining knowledge, it wont do to utilize knowledge in its explanation. [16:56] Alcuin: So again I am forced to ask you, What is the definition of that odd concatenation "Knowledge"(knowledge 1)? [16:56] Action: Alcuin does not underrate senses, but does not believe that all knowledge derives from their transactions. [16:57] "True, warranted belief" Where does the term "knowledge" occur in that definition? [16:57] Alcuin: What is that odd concatenation "true" or "warranted" or "belief"? [16:57] Alcuin: I've seen similar combinations of english letters, but since we're defining what knowledge is, I am unable to marshal knwledge in my aid. [16:58] Would you like me to recommend some elementary books on epistemology? They may prove useful to you in covering such basic ground. [16:58] Alcuin: marshal knowledge to assist me in this definition. [16:58] Alcuin: Stop squirming. Provide a definition of knowledge that does not presuppose knowledge. And now you should begin to see the absurdity in asking, "How do you verify logic?" [16:58] "belief" = "the mental state of affirming a proposition" [16:59] Alcuin: What is that odd combination, "the" "mental" "state" "of" " affirming" "A" "proposition"? [16:59] Alcuin: or are you assuming that I have knowledge of those terms (which doesn't do me much good since we're supposedly defining knowledge"? [17:00] Elysium, no squirming is required. Your objection is trivial. You have failed to demonstrate that the definition I have provided *does* presuppose knowledge. [17:00] Alcuin: of course it does. In defining something you are inevitably forced to use words; for the definition to have meaning, the words used in defining it must have meaning. Which is knowlede. See the problems of using the too ls we use to evaluate actua [17:01] Now, if what you mean is that I should provide a definition of X on the assumption that you are truly *tabula rasa*, then you are merely proving my point, that the assumption that we begin *tabula rasa* leads to absurdity! [17:01] lly existent objects with concepts? [17:01] Alcuin: No, not at all. We begin with blank minds. Logic *is*, and because of this, knowledge *can be*. [17:01] Good, you're getting the point. Now, follow it to its inevitable logical conclusion. [17:02] If we begin with blank minds, why should anyone "believe" the concatenation "logic is" ? [17:02] Action: Alcuin puts on his rollerblades again, to skate around Elysium's circle. [17:03] Alcuin: I'm not sure I understand what your'e asking. Unless of course logic *is*, and I can assume that the question utilizes the principle of identity and non-contradiction (allowing me to understand it). [17:03] From a truly tabula rasa, there is no reason whatsoever to believe that nature is consistent and that it will therefore allow the inference of logical principles. [17:04] Alcuin: Like I said, you dont' *have* to beieve that logic is; in whih case you are free to indulge your solipsism until the day you cease to be. [17:04] Elysium: You *can* understand the question, because the world *is* as I suggest it is: i.e., a state of affairs necessary and sufficient to account for the possibility of logic. [17:04] Alcuin: And as I maintained earlier, that claim is unsubstantiated. Theism is not necessary for knowledge. [17:04] Elysium: Let the whole world hear your renunciation of logic: ""you dont' *have* to beieve that logic is"" [17:05] Alcuin: Which stems from my disagreement that concepts are either transcendant or actual. [17:05] Elysium: Not only is the claim not unsubstantiated, it is inevitable. Just try to demonstrate the possibility of logic, given its denial! [17:05] And which leads to the narrowly circular, absurd position that logic can never be known at all. [17:06] Logic because regular nature; regular nature because logic. [17:06] ""And it's *just* *that* *way*"" [17:06] Alcuin: You dont get it. Logic is a pre-requisite for knowledge. There is no knowledge *before* logic. If your deity provides the basis for logic, then your deity becomes an unknowable, unknown (nonexistent) entity. [17:06] Alcuin: But let's follow this through. Let's begin from the standpoint that god does not exist. [17:07] But earlier, you said that you derived knowledge of logical laws after having been bombarded with sense data for a time. Were those data unintelligible, or did you have logical laws after all? [17:07] Yes, let's. [17:07] Alcuin: The universe exists. [17:08] Elysium: How do you know? [17:08] Alcuin: There are only a few positions you can take on that one. Either you agree that it does, in which case we can move forward. [17:08] Action: Alcuin is willing to follow Elysium down this path, arguendo. [17:08] Elysium: Why should anyone agree to that? [17:08] Alcuin: if you are unconvinced of it's existence, then I have no way of communicating with you. If A is not A, what do any of you words mean? [17:08] Exactly!!!!!!!! [17:09] Alcuin: A similar fate awaits you, should you agree with the denial of it's existence. [17:09] Alcuin: Still no god's in sight. All this abstracted from the actual existence of the universe. [17:09] All *what*? [17:10] Alcuin: That's pretty simple. Deities have nothing to do with knowledge. [17:10] If you're *really* going to try to deny the existence of God, you've got some tough explaining to do. I'm willing to hear you out. [17:10] Alcuin: Not at all. I've just presented a situation in which knowledge exists and there are no gods about. [17:10] Just gesture however vaguely in the direction of a cogent account of how knowledge is possible, how logic is identifiable. [17:10] Alcuin: Which is what I have maintained from the beginning; the primacy of the universe. [17:10] You have? [17:10] Where? [17:11] Action: Alcuin looks for Elysium's account of knowledge without god. [17:11] Anon (Garbonzo@iad_ppp0128.iamerica.net) joined #apologetics. [17:11] greetings? [17:11] er, greetings! [17:11] anyone here? [17:11] or am I looking at bots again? [17:11] Alcuin: This is getting tiresome. A denial of the proposition, "the universe exists" entails absurdity (or solipsism as I prefer to call it), [17:11] Elysium? Alcuin? [17:11] There's not a rational basis for believing in the primacy of the universe. Even IF (tm) we granted such a belief, however, you still wouldn't be able to account for knowledge, Elysium! [17:11] Hi, Anon. [17:11] hello? [17:11] PaulC36 (paul@s12.carolina-chat.com) joined #apologetics. [17:11] hi [17:12] Alcuin: The primacy of the universe is the axiom upon which rationality is based. [17:12] Hello all! God be with you! [17:12] Elysium: So, let's grant your premise and see whether it makes knowledge possible. [E1] The universe exists. [17:12] Hi, PaulC36 [17:12] I don't know about that, Paul... :) Which is why I'm here, I guess [17:12] keltic (meren@ix-nyc17-08.ix.netcom.com) joined #apologetics. [17:13] Action: Alcuin waits for Elysium to show how the premise ([E1] the universe exists) leads to the conclusion that knowledge is possible. [17:13] What don't you know about, Anon? [17:14] Alcuin: our senses interact with the physical universe. We make internal subjective representations of the universe around us. We test some of the conclusions, and some of them we accept as true based on other folks tests. [17:14] I don't know that God exists. [17:14] Nick change: Elysium -> Rev_Ely [17:14] Action: Rev_Ely apologizes for the nick shift mid-stream. [17:14] ely [17:14] Elysium: On [E1], how do you know that our senses interact [a] at all, and [b] consistently, with the universe? [17:15] brb... putting the whites into the wash... [17:15] I know He does. He proves it to me every day. [17:15] keltic (meren@ix-nyc17-08.ix.netcom.com) left irc: [17:15] Alcuin: B) is satisfied by testing, and the denial of a leads to absurdity. [17:15] Elysium: Furthermore, how is it possible to non-circularly "test" the correspondence of our subjective sense-data to the universe, without reference to those data? [17:15] Alcuin: If it isn't true that your senses interact, then I have no way of knowing what you mean when you say something. [17:16] That was objection [c] to [E1] [17:16] Alcuin: Well that's pretty easy. I may abstract concept, say, force, from my experiments with apples falling. [17:16] Rev_Ely: Yes, you are right. Yet a non-theist has no way to affirm the reliability of the senses. [17:17] Alcuin: Then a few thousand miles away, somebody writes down some information about planets and rotation. [17:17] PaulC36 (paul@s12.carolina-chat.com) left #apologetics. [17:17] Alcun: A few thousand miles south of that, someone writes down some information about collisions between small balls. [17:18] Alcuin: My abstraction of F=MA from applies accurately predicts what my friend studied about planets! But I died before getting to check, so I wrote it down. [17:18] Rev_Ely: [a] leads to radical solipsism. The fact that you don't like this is distinct from your having demonstrated that it's any more absurd than other possibilities inherent in your model [E1] [17:18] Alcuin: Still no gods in sight. We've got knowledge and no gods. [17:19] Rev_Ely: You're ambitious! You haven't got knowledge at all! [17:19] Alcuin: It has very little to do with whether or not I like the conclusions of a. If a is accepted, then the discussion ceases. [17:19] Alcuin: Which is why a's acceptance leads to absurdity. [17:19] Action: Alcuin looks around yet again to verify Rev_Ely's bald assertion of having established epistemology.... [17:20] I've addressed your objections. And I have explained how knowledge (in this case, f=ma) can be arrived at without deities. [17:20] Rev_Ely: You haven't established on the basis of [E1] that there is a method of determining whether [a] leads to absurdity or not. [17:20] I'm back... Okay, Paul. How does He show you? [17:20] Rev_Ely: You say "" I've addressed your objections. And I have explained how knowledge (in this case, f=ma) can be arrived at without deities."" False, and false. You've barely scratched the surface, with a few arbitrary assertions. [17:20] Alcuin: I have explained that. If my senses do not interact with the physical world, then I am unable to formulate notions (which I do) or communicate them (which I do). [17:21] So maybe that's the case! [17:21] Alcuin: You on the other hand have not explained how you have arrived at conclusions about your deities nature and how we verify thes notions. You have not explained how 1 = 3, how non-material, non-temporal *beings* actually ex ist [17:21] Does god enter into all this by implanting all knowledge into us? Is that what Alcuin's saying? That knowledge could not exist without god? [17:22] Maybe you [a] do not interact with an external world (though it's there), [b] subjectively believe that it seems to you that you are formulating notions, and [c] project the illusion of communication within your solipsistic bubble ! [17:22] Alcuin: In short, as I stated at the outset, the claim, "god exists" is still unevidenced. [17:22] Alcuin: Once we've accepted your revised a) the discussion ceases I have no idea what you mean by b and c if a is true. [17:22] Giving up on your claim to be able to provide an account of knowledge on [E1]? So soon? [17:23] Alcuin: So, as I stated earlier, while axioms are necessary for knowledge, the christian god axiom is not. [17:23] Rev_Ely: Good. So now we've granted you *arguende* that E1: the universe exists, and now we're going to grant you E2: that your sense perceptions somehow relate to the universe (to help you ward off solipsism, which you dislike f or reasons that you've been unable to establish). Next? [17:24] Alcuin: Sense perception is related to the universe because it's denial entails absurdity. [17:24] Note, that we're only granting E1 and E2 *arguendo*, since you are entirely unable to account for *why* anyone should believe such things . [17:24] Why shouldn't the universe be absurd? [17:24] Alcuin: I'm not saying that the universe shouldn't be absurd, but that it is not. [17:25] I don't believe that the universe is absurd. Apparently you don't either. I have a reason. Do you? [17:25] How do you *know* that it is not? [Try to avoid a logically circular argument, here] [17:26] Alcuin: Whenyou use the term absurd, I am assuming you mean that the laws of identity do not hold. [17:26] For example, yes. [17:26] Alcuin: identity, non-contradiction that is. These are the basis upon which definition make sense. If these are true, then the universe is not absurd. [17:27] Alcuin: I dont think either of us is arguing that identity and non-contradiction are not true. [17:27] Alcuin: however, should you find yourself in that position, then I have no idea of what you mean when I see the letters after your name. [17:27] If these are true, then the universe is not absurd. However, on the basis of "The universe exists" you have no access to laws of identity and non-contradiction. [17:27] Alcuin: Of course I do; the universe's existence entails the laws of identity nd non-contradiction. [17:28] And if you *did* have such access, you'd have no non-circular way of determining whether such laws are to be preferred over absurdity. [17:28] Nonsense. The universe could be absurd. [17:28] Absurd in what sense? [17:29] Rev_Ely: This has been a lovely 3 hours, but I have a few things to take care of. Can we take this up right here, some other time, with you trying to give a cogent account of the possibility of knowledge? I'm very interested in seeing the outcome of your reasoning. [17:29] Alcuin: You really don't seem to get it. The universe *is* not absurd. [17:29] Alcuin: I'll agree to that if you will provide a clear explanation of how one can verify the claim that, "logic is rooted in god's nature". [17:29] So you say. I agree. But does your worldview provide a way of *demonstrating* that there's any reason whatsoever (however feeble and childlike) for believing that the universe is not absurd? [17:30] I will agree to provide as clear an explanation as I am able of my claim that logic is rooted in god's nature, since you have asked and since it's a good question. [17:30] Action: Alcuin holds out a hand to shake Rev_Ely's [17:30] Alcuin: I do not deny the problems inherent in discussions of knowledge. I maintain very simply that theism does not address these questions; it sets them a step back. [17:30] I don't [17:31] Action: Rev_Ely shakes alcuin's hand. [17:31] Gotta go. *Bye* [17:31] Alcuin (kingtutor@remote4-line29.cis.yale.edu) left #apologetics. [ref002]Return to #apologetics Home Page [ref003]Return to LOGS Page [ref004]Go to the MCU Virtual Library [ref001] http://mcu.edu/library/logs/log_3_22_96.html [ref002] http://www.fiu.edu/~wgreen01/apologetics.html [ref003] http://www.fiu.edu/~wgreen01/logs.html [ref004] ../


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