Elsewhere on the internet...

The League of Reason has some social media accounts! You can find us on Facebook or on Twitter for some interesting links and things.

Preconditional Worldview

Post new topic Reply to topic  Page 11 of 11
 [ 208 posts ] 
Preconditional Worldview
Author Message
SparhafocPosts: 2458Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Preconditional Worldview

*SD* wrote:
Leroy wrote:Granted, however it is still a fact that you can know something even if you cant show it to be true. For example It is completely reasonable to grant something as real on the basis on a memory or a personal experience.


As much as it pains me to agree with Leroy on pretty much anything, I do wholeheartedly agree with him on this point (and this point alone so far) and this is something I've brought up before.



Can you show it to be true? :)

To me, with no disrespect to your good self, it looks like the obfuscation of undergraduate philosophy. It's a turtles-all-the-way-down statement.

In reality, you can very strongly believe something to be true in the absence of being able to show it to be true, but you can't *know* it in any way that could convince someone else to a reasonable degree of doubt.

For example, LEROY claims that you can 'know' something is real on the basis of a memory, whereas cognitive psychologists have shown how easy it is to contrive false memories wholesale and convince the subject that they possess those memories.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memory_implantation

Further, a personal experience is fraught with complications. One can be mad, one can be hallucinating, one can be simply wrong.

Real knowledge has to be intersubjective, in that other people can also observe the phenomenon independently and agree, at least, that it exists. It's often been noted that were there only one remaining person on Earth, science would become impossible to conduct, because that person could suffer from delusions and confirmation bias, unable to detect errors in their thinking producing false outcomes.
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Wed Jan 17, 2018 8:13 pm
*SD*User avatarPosts: 340Joined: Sat Mar 30, 2013 1:00 amLocation: Wales, UK Gender: Male

Post Re: Preconditional Worldview

I'm unable to write a lengthy response right now as I'm forced to use my phone. I have read your entire reply. Not to create an argument, and no disrespect is intended to your good self either - however you haven't refuted Leroy's point.

I will have to be brief for this post but I should be back home tomorrow.

Go touch something and make sure no one sees you. Do you know you just touched that thing? Or do you just believe it?

For me this boils down to what is reasonable. I agree with leroy in that it is reasonable to say you know things you have no way to demonstrate to others.

I made a thread on this very point a long time ago, it is titled "a question to aronra" - if I could link you to it I would but it's tricky on my mobile. It won't take much digging to find it.

Aronra couldn't or didn't refute it There, and others also understood the point I was making. I'll try to write a more comprehensive response tomorrow afternoon.
Image
Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:27 pm
WWW
Dragan GlasContributorUser avatarPosts: 3179Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 1:55 amLocation: Ireland Gender: Male

Post Re: Preconditional Worldview

Greetings,

Here's the thread.

I think it comes down to a use of language in how we use the term "know".

In everyday language we take it to mean exactly that, however, in scientific terms we actually mean "believe".

So, it's actually the difference between "relative knowledge" (belief), and "absolute knowledge" (truth).

Everyday occurrences are one thing - unusual occurrences are another.

Kindest regards,

James
Image
"The Word of God is the Creation we behold and it is in this Word, which no human invention can counterfeit or alter, that God speaketh universally to man."
The Age Of Reason
Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:30 pm
SparhafocPosts: 2458Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Preconditional Worldview

*SD* wrote:I'm unable to write a lengthy response right now as I'm forced to use my phone. I have read your entire reply. Not to create an argument, and no disrespect is intended to your good self either - however you haven't refuted Leroy's point.


Actually, I don't need to refute it because it is not established as anything more than an assertion.


*SD* wrote:Go touch something and make sure no one sees you. Do you know you just touched that thing? Or do you just believe it?


I am a little perplexed because I clearly already addressed this in the post you are responding to.


Sparhafoc wrote:In reality, you can very strongly believe something to be true in the absence of being able to show it to be true, but you can't *know* it in any way that could convince someone else to a reasonable degree of doubt.

...

One can be mad, one can be hallucinating, one can be simply wrong.


I believe I touched that thing. Can I say I 'know' it in any sense of the actual meaning of the word? Only in exactly the same way as a mentally deranged person 'knows' they see/experience/observe phantoms that no one else can see.

As I said, without intersubjective confirmation, how can you honestly claim to know anything? Why exactly are you sure?

This is exactly where undergraduate philosophy necessarily arrives at. It's the solution to the perceived 'problem'.



Sparhafoc wrote:For me this boils down to what is reasonable. I agree with leroy in that it is reasonable to say you know things you have no way to demonstrate to others.


So with respect to the issue of memory plantation in the link I provided about memory implantation, is it then 'reasonable' for the people in Wade et al's study to conclude that they did, in fact, experience a hot air balloon ride?

Yes, it's perfectly 'reasonable'.

But it's still false.

Other studies have expanded on this paradigm by introducing photos instead of narratives. Wade and colleagues found that 50% of people came to remember details of a hot air balloon ride that never happened, after seeing a manipulated photo depicting the event.[5] Later it has been argued that photos by themselves do not produce more false memories than narratives, but that both methods have the power to successfully implant false memories.


For me, reasonableness has precisely bugger all to do with the point being discussed. What's actually being discussed is whether something is true just because you experienced it. How do you confirm that?

One very compelling answer I already gave.


*SD* wrote:I made a thread on this very point a long time ago, it is titled "a question to aronra" - if I could link you to it I would but it's tricky on my mobile. It won't take much digging to find it.


Ok.... read it.... same issue - exactly the same problem as I've just pointed out above.


*SD* wrote:Aronra couldn't or didn't refute it There, and others also understood the point I was making. I'll try to write a more comprehensive response tomorrow afternoon.


Regardless of what AronRa could or could not do - you haven't actually addressed my response. It would help because I've pointed to a real world study which genetically undermines your claims, but you haven't responded to that. Of course, if you are being consistent, then it doesn't matter what real world studies show because just so long as you believe something, it must be true! :)
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Last edited by Sparhafoc on Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:05 am
SparhafocPosts: 2458Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Preconditional Worldview

Dragan Glas wrote:Greetings,

Here's the thread.

I think it comes down to a use of language in how we use the term "know".

In everyday language we take it to mean exactly that, however, in scientific terms we actually mean "believe".

So, it's actually the difference between "relative knowledge" (belief), and "absolute knowledge" (truth).

Everyday occurrences are one thing - unusual occurrences are another.



Yup, pretty much nailed it.

I would also say that a paradigm in play here is wool/rigour.

A thousand examples could be given where someone's confident subjective experience is shown to be false, but LEROY would never allow factual contradictions to influence his claims. I hope SD doesn't follow suit.
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:08 am
SparhafocPosts: 2458Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Preconditional Worldview

As an interesting Sapir-Whorfian sidenote, it's intriguing how English is fairly rare in its lack of vocabulary to distinctualize between types of knowing.

All other Latin based languages, plus German, plus even Thai have a verb to distinctualize between knowledge in the sense of how something works, and knowledge in the sense of recognizing or being acquainted with something. For example, in French they would be connaître and savoir, whereas both would be translated into English as 'know'. Bertrand Russell's category distinction here is knowledge by acquaintance and knowledge by description.

The useful thing about the word 'belief' as compared to the word 'know' is that logically the object of the belief doesn't need to be true as a pre-requisite for believing, whereas knowing something requires it to be true. The former is a statement about one's inner world, a description of one's thought processes, while the latter is a claim about reality.

As per my sig: beliefs are things we cannot know to be true.
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:38 am
*SD*User avatarPosts: 340Joined: Sat Mar 30, 2013 1:00 amLocation: Wales, UK Gender: Male

Post Re: Preconditional Worldview

Ok I don't really have the time to post a line by line response at the moment, but thank you Dragan for linking the thread I mentioned, very kind of you.

Sparhafoc wrote:Actually, I don't need to refute it because it is not established as anything more than an assertion.


So? Assertions are refuted all the time, it's part and parcel of the nature of these discussions. It's not a mere assertion, well it could be on Leroy's part but it's not on my part since I've given examples in the thread James kindly took the time to link.

Sparhafoc wrote:As I said, without intersubjective confirmation, how can you honestly claim to know anything? Why exactly are you sure?


If you're talking about "absolute" certainty (which I reject) then I can't be. I'm talking about what is reasonable - what's the difference between absolute certainty and just regular old boring certainty?

Sparhafoc wrote:For me, reasonableness has precisely bugger all to do with the point being discussed. What's actually being discussed is whether something is true just because you experienced it. How do you confirm that?


Well, for me it does. I'm not interested in hardcore philosophical tosh. I'm interested in what is reasonably classed as a reasonable conclusion. I can only draw your attention back to my previous examples. Go turn your hob on and keep your palm on the burner for 5 hours - pretty confident you wouldn't be questioning whether you "know" it hurts or not at that particular juncture. What about when you go to the hospital and they ask you if you can be completely certain you know it hurts? It's too far departed from reality for me I'm afraid. It's interesting to delve into these things once in a while but one time a relatively well known and popular atheist blogger did state that even if we live in the matrix or some other reality which is externally not real, the rules imposed upon me I am still bound by - whether they're real beyond my own experiences or not. Not an exact quote but you get the gist.

Sparhafoc wrote:Regardless of what AronRa could or could not do - you haven't actually addressed my response. It would help because I've pointed to a real world study which genetically undermines your claims, but you haven't responded to that. Of course, if you are being consistent, then it doesn't matter what real world studies show because just so long as you believe something, it must be true! :)


I thought I'd only made assertions? But you are correct, I am going to be consistent. I don't care what a study shows in this particular instance as I unfortunately don't have enough time (at present) to dedicate to this topic. For me, again, it's about being reasonable. Maybe you can find someone else who has sufficient time to get into it on a deeper level.

The only reason I even chimed in is because I was amazed I agreed with something Leroy said. It's a first for me. Aron's contention (can we call it that?) is that if you can't show it - you don't know it. It's not "if you can't show it then you can't prove it to anyone else" - that's different.

It's a little like "There is no evidence for Christianity"

Yes, there is. It's pretty crap evidence, nowhere near good enough and not nearly enough of it even if it were. But it's sloppy language. That's been noted on at least one thread on this here forum previously. He was taken to task by a member who doesn't seem to be active any more (more's the pity, I quite enjoyed that posters contributions)

Anyway, like I say, before you point it out, I haven't had the time to quote you line by line and write many many posts in reply to you, but I did say I'd do my best to pop back this afternoon and write a more, if not much more, comprehensive one.

ATB,

SD
Image
Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:29 pm
WWW
SparhafocPosts: 2458Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Preconditional Worldview

*SD* wrote:So? Assertions are refuted all the time, it's part and parcel of the nature of these discussions.


Well, the refutation of an assertion goes like this: no, that's wrong.

Not really an interesting format of discussion in my eyes; it's just talking at each other.


*SD* wrote: It's not a mere assertion, well it could be on Leroy's part but it's not on my part since I've given examples in the thread James kindly took the time to link.


It is assuredly on LEROY's part, because that's how he operates.



*SD* wrote:
Sparhafoc wrote:As I said, without intersubjective confirmation, how can you honestly claim to know anything? Why exactly are you sure?


If you're talking about "absolute" certainty (which I reject) then I can't be.


Well, there goes that then. We don't disagree. You can't claim to know something you can't actually show to be true: you can just believe it to be true.


*SD* wrote:I'm talking about what is reasonable - what's the difference between absolute certainty and just regular old boring certainty?


As I mentioned, reason doesn't come into this because you can't reason something into existence, you can't reason your way out of being fooled, or hallucinating, or having completely the wrong end of the stick. The latter is more possible to reason out of, but the usual way someone would incite this would be to show you evidence that you are wrong.


*SD* wrote:
Sparhafoc wrote:For me, reasonableness has precisely bugger all to do with the point being discussed. What's actually being discussed is whether something is true just because you experienced it. How do you confirm that?


Well, for me it does. I'm not interested in hardcore philosophical tosh.


Odd, because that's exactly what you are doing, no?

If you're not talking about epistemology, what is the discussion about?



*SD* wrote: I'm interested in what is reasonably classed as a reasonable conclusion. I can only draw your attention back to my previous examples. Go turn your hob on and keep your palm on the burner for 5 hours - pretty confident you wouldn't be questioning whether you "know" it hurts or not at that particular juncture. What about when you go to the hospital and they ask you if you can be completely certain you know it hurts?


For the first, ironically, you'd have a very clear way of corroborating that knowledge, and the second is the same format of problem we've already seen. For example, hypochondria. Doctors do certainly use self-reporting of pain to narrow down diagnosis, but they can't actually know that someone's experiencing pain unless the source of that pain produces observable data. That's why there are so many conditions which have no cure - IBS for example - and doctors really can't do anything to help. Also, of course, we still have the problem of someone being deranged or just lying.

As for the first example, I actually think it provides a disproof of your position. Let's say that I agree. I go downstairs, turn the hob on, and keep my palm on the burner for 5 hours. I now come back to you and report that I didn't feel any pain. Do you believe my report at face value, or would you withhold belief until I could furnish you with evidence of it?


*SD* wrote: It's too far departed from reality for me I'm afraid. It's interesting to delve into these things once in a while but one time a relatively well known and popular atheist blogger did state that even if we live in the matrix or some other reality which is externally not real, the rules imposed upon me I am still bound by - whether they're real beyond my own experiences or not. Not an exact quote but you get the gist.


Absolutely, the brain-in-the-vat notion. But if it's an illusion, then your knowledge is false, regardless of how compelling it may be. That's the same scenario as if you were just mad as a lark and imagined it all.


*SD* wrote:
Sparhafoc wrote:Regardless of what AronRa could or could not do - you haven't actually addressed my response. It would help because I've pointed to a real world study which genetically undermines your claims, but you haven't responded to that. Of course, if you are being consistent, then it doesn't matter what real world studies show because just so long as you believe something, it must be true! :)


I thought I'd only made assertions?


/confused

You seemed to note above that my comment was directed at LEROY, but now you take it to mean it as being directed at you?



*SD* wrote:But you are correct, I am going to be consistent. I don't care what a study shows in this particular instance as I unfortunately don't have enough time (at present) to dedicate to this topic. For me, again, it's about being reasonable. Maybe you can find someone else who has sufficient time to get into it on a deeper level.


My confusion is growing. Are you not sufficiently interested to express your position on it to a stranger on the internet, apparently more than once? Doesn't that interest extend to learning where your idea might be flawed?

I think the fact of implanted memories should cause some pause for thought here.


*SD* wrote:The only reason I even chimed in is because I was amazed I agreed with something Leroy said. It's a first for me. Aron's contention (can we call it that?) is that if you can't show it - you don't know it. It's not "if you can't show it then you can't prove it to anyone else" - that's different.


Agreed, but it's about the distinction between knowledge and belief. AronRa's contention is that knowledge cannot exist independently of everything else, and particularly not independently of the thing it claims to know. This is actually a very ancient discussion going back nearly as far as written records, and which all the great philosophers of every era have wrestled with.


*SD* wrote:It's a little like "There is no evidence for Christianity"

Yes, there is. It's pretty crap evidence, nowhere near good enough and not nearly enough of it even if it were. But it's sloppy language. That's been noted on at least one thread on this here forum previously. He was taken to task by a member who doesn't seem to be active any more (more's the pity, I quite enjoyed that posters contributions)


I expect that can be resolved very easily and it's just a matter of semantics. Of course there's evidence for Christianity in the sense of Christianity existing - there are churches, and documents and Christians... but is there evidence for the central claims of Christianity? Is there evidence of Yahweh? Evidence of Jesus being reincarnated? Evidence of original sin etc? No, there's no evidence, crap or otherwise. There are just some assertions written in a book.



*SD* wrote:Anyway, like I say, before you point it out, I haven't had the time to quote you line by line and write many many posts in reply to you, but I did say I'd do my best to pop back this afternoon and write a more, if not much more, comprehensive one.


Please do. I am not sure whether I am way off base, but you seem to find it frustrating that your idea is not accepted at face value and that it would be preferable if I didn't even reply? Please tell me if I am wrong, but otherwise, I am perplexed as to why you would want to forward an idea on a discussion site that you don't want to defend from critique,
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:02 pm
Previous
Post new topic Reply to topic  Page 11 of 11
 [ 208 posts ] 
Return to Religion & Irreligion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 9 guests