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The Case for Idealism

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The Case for Idealism
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Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post The Case for Idealism

This is an argument for Idealism: In philosophy, the group of philosophies which assert that reality, or reality as we can know it, is fundamentally mental, mentally constructed, or otherwise immaterial.

I will lay out a rough sketch of the argument in formal terms and explain how I arrive at each premise and in order:

P1.) Mind exists (Introspection).
P2.) Eliminating Consciousness is self-refuting (P1).
P3.) Mind cannot be reduced to non-mind (Hard Problem of Consciousness).
P4.) Substance Dualism is false (Mind-Body Problem).
P5.) Mind-Body Problem implies Monism (P4, Causal Closure).
P6.) Non-Reductive Physicalism is false (Exclusion Problem).
P7.) There is mental causation (Introspection/Mind-Body Interaction).
P8.) There is only mental causation (P5-P7, Exclusion Problem).
Conclusion: Monistic Idealism is true (P1-P8).

P1.+P2.) We are conscious. There is first-person subjective awareness. Even if you're skeptical about whether you're in the matrix or if this is a dream, you're still aware that you're aware in each scenario. No matter what you're still conscious, this you definitely know for sure if there is anything that can be said to be known for sure. To claim otherwise would be a contradiction: you would be consciously denying that you're conscious and those who think otherwise are not only mistaken in their thinking but aren't actually thinking at all.

P3.) Given that we know the mental exists, we surely would like to explain it the same way we normally do by reducing it to something more fundamental than itself. The problem is the mental resists this reduction. As explained in the internet encyclopedia of philosophy (a peer-reviewed academic resource):

"In more detail, the challenge arises because it does not seem that the qualitative and subjective aspects of conscious experience—how consciousness “feels” and the fact that it is directly “for me”—fit into a physicalist ontology, one consisting of just the basic elements of physics plus structural, dynamical, and functional combinations of those basic elements. It appears that even a complete specification of a creature in physical terms leaves unanswered the question of whether or not the creature is conscious. And it seems that we can easily conceive of creatures just like us physically and functionally that nonetheless lack consciousness. This indicates that a physical explanation of consciousness is fundamentally incomplete: it leaves out what it is like to be the subject, for the subject."1


Thomas Nagel gives us a good example of this:

... If a mental event really is a physical event in this sense, and nothing else, then the physical event by itself, once its physical properties are understood, should likewise be sufficient for the taste of sugar, the feeling of pain, or whatever it is supposed to be identical with. But it doesn't seem to be. It seems conceivable, for any physical event, there should be a physical event without any experience at all. Experience of taste seems to be something extra, contingently related to the brain state- something produced rather than constituted by the brain state. So it cannot be identical to the brain state in the way water is identical to H20.”2


Neurons and their cells are just other cells that performs functions like any other cells. They're not magical, they're not special, they are describable with observation just like any other cell. If the mind were identical to such, then describing such would be enough, but we know that it's not. And no, you cannot appeal to some possible future discovery to bridge this because if the mental were identical to such then there would be nothing to bridge. You could bite the bullet and say there is nothing to bridge but you will just wind up an eliminativist and deny the existence of the mental which we've already established exists.

P4.) So the mind exists and is not reducible to non-mind. Perhaps from here we could accept substance dualism by believing there is both the mental and the non-mental together. This option will not do however since there is interaction between what the dualist is calling mental and non-mental. If they both existed independently then one should exist without the other, like a pianist and a piano. If you damage the piano then you haven't damaged the pianist in this scenario. However, in real life we can see how brain damage does indeed damage the mind and can alter personality.3 Taking drugs doesn't just alter behavior yet leaves your mind intact. Your mental states themselves are altered along with behavior and neurological states. This doesn't make any sense if the mental and the non-mental existed independently.

P5.) From the rejection of substance dualism, most people seem to think this brain damage altering consciousness implies materialism/physicalism: that we are nothing more than our physical makeup and our mind is either housed in our brains (almost like dualism) or is identical to our brains and/or its functions. This is a non-sequitur however. This only implies that substance dualism is false. What is not a non-sequitur however is the monistic intuition that comes from the mistaken materialist assumption. The interaction of mind and what we call non-mind is does indeed entail a kind of monism. If they were two fundamental substances they couldn't interact, but they do interact, so there must be one fundamental substance.
If causal domains are restricted to closed domains, then anything that can be interacted with must all be in the same domain. So there is one substance, one type of stuff that makes up all of reality.

P6.) We've established the mind exists, is not reducible, and there is only one substance with a closed causal domain. We still seem to be left with the mental and the non-mental, so perhaps we could say there is a monism of substance but a dualism of properties: a non-reductive physicalism of sorts that sees the non-mental as fundamental with the mental emerging from it. This position falls flat on its face as Jaegwon Kim:

"If nonreductive physicalists accept the causal closure of the physical domain, therefore, they have no visible way of accounting for the possibility of psychophysical causation. This means that they must either give up their antireductionism or else reject the possibility of psychophysical causal relations.The denial of psychophysical causation can come about in two ways: first, you make such a denial because you don't believe there are mental events; or second, you keep faith with mental events even though you acknowledge that they never enter into causal transactions with physical processes, constituting their own autonomous causal world. So either you have espoused eliminativism, or else you are moving further in the direction of dualism, a dualism that posits a realm of the mental in total causal isolation from the physical realm. This doesn't look to me much like materialism. Is the abandonment of the causal closure of the physical domain an option for the materialist? I think not: to reject the closure principle is to embrace irreducible nonphysical causes of physical phenomena. It would be a retrogression to Cartesian interactionist dualism, something that is definitive of the denial of materialism. Our conclusion, therefore, has to be this: nonreductive materialism is not a stable position. There are pressures of various sorts that push it either in the direction of outright eliminativism or in the direction of an explicit form of dualism."4


If what they call the physical world is causally closed, and the mental is distinct in type from the physical, then there would be no mental causation. But there is mental causation. Even if you want to bite the bullet like the epiphenomenalist and say there is no mental causation, you're right back to the mind-body problem given that you're saying the non-mental still causes mental phenomenon and we've established this interaction cannot happen even from the bottom-up. It is not clear how non-reductive physicalists can maintain substance monism here as others like John Searle have noted.5,6,7

P7.) This premise is arrived at mainly through introspection like P1+P2. The debate around mental causation today is not whether it exists, but how mental properties can interact with physical properties.7 We have a common sense understanding that we are conscious and that we can will ourselves to behave in certain. Our conscious thoughts and volitions cause bodily actions. But how can this be given the exclusion problem?

P8.) If we know the mind exists, is irreducible, causal domains are closed, monism is true, and mental causation exists, well then this would have to mean there is only the mental. We can't have both the mental and the non-mental as that would be substance dualism, and non-reductive physicalism would contradict our commitment to mental causation, so we are left with idealism. Anything that exists would fundamentally be mental in nature and is either conscious or a property of consciousness. There's only one type of substance and one type of property: the mental.

P1-P8, Conclusion.) Idealism is true.

This is just a general case for idealism. There are many versions of idealism as outlined by David Chalmers.8 I subscribe to what he called Cosmic Idealism, but that I can argue for in another post.


Bibliography

1. "Hard Problem of Consciousness," by Josh Weisberg, Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, https://www.iep.utm.edu/hard-con/

2. Thomas Nagel (2012). “Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature Is Almost Certainly False". p. 41. Oxford University Press.

3: Garcia PG, Mielke MM, Rosenberg P, Bergey A, Rao V. PERSONALITY CHANGES IN BRAIN INJURY. The Journal of neuropsychiatry and clinical neurosciences. 2011;23(2):E14. doi:10.1176/appi.neuropsych.23.2.E14.

4. Kim, Jaegwon (1989). The myth of non-reductive materialism. Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association 63 (3):31-47.

5. Searle, John R. (2002). Why I am not a property dualist. Journal of Consciousness Studies 9 (12):57-64.

6. Zimmerman, Dean (2010). From Property Dualism to Substance Dualism. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 84 (1):119 - 150.

7. Robb, David and Heil, John, "Mental Causation", The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Spring 2014 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.), URL = <https://plato.stanford.edu/archives/spr2014/entries/mental-causation/>.

8. Chalmers, David (forthcoming). Idealism and the Mind-Body Problem. In William Seager (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Panpsychism. Routledge.
Sun May 20, 2018 4:52 am
SparhafocPosts: 2516Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

This is an argument for Idealism: In philosophy, the group of philosophies which assert that reality, or reality as we can know it, is fundamentally mental, mentally constructed, or otherwise immaterial.


It's not really much of an argument though; of course 'reality as we can know it' is fundamentally mental - that's a tautology.

i) there is reality ii) we can 'know' stuff by employing our sensory organs and brain iii) our knowledge is necessarily 'mental'.

But that's quite different to saying that reality itself is mental, which doesn't follow from the stated notions.

Further, there are ways we can go about hoving closer to a more accurate mental representation of reality, for example, experimentation, prediction, inter-subjective inquiry. Perhaps our meat-bag brains are incapable ever of perceiving reality, the terrain, as it actually is, but that doesn't mean we can't perceive enough of reality as it is in order to do useful stuff with our mental map of it.

Also, reality precedes the knowing of it, or the stated contentions are self-refuting.


P1.) Mind exists (Introspection).


Self-defeating from the perspective of idealism. How can we know mind exists if reality is purely mental? Perhaps we made up the concept of mind, and it's just an illusion.


P2.) Eliminating Consciousness is self-refuting (P1).


Not really. Consciousness could be an illusion which lets us pretend to ourselves that it exists.


P3.) Mind cannot be reduced to non-mind (Hard Problem of Consciousness).


Mind also can't be reduced to non-physical as we know of no minds existing without a physical substrate, and the minds we do know of apparently cease existing when the physical substrate is damaged or dies.


P4.) Substance Dualism is false (Mind-Body Problem).


An assertion that cannot be established from within the parametres of idealism, i.e it's self-refuting.


P5.) Mind-Body Problem implies Monism (P4, Causal Closure).


Or it's wholly in error because mind is body behavior, therefore wholly contingent on the existence of body, therefore actually just a function of it.


P6.) Non-Reductive Physicalism is false (Exclusion Problem).


Lots of repetition using different ways to declare the same assertion.


P7.) There is mental causation (Introspection/Mind-Body Interaction).


Or body-body interaction if one sees the mind as being the behavior of the brain.


P8.) There is only mental causation (P5-P7, Exclusion Problem).


Not established and therefore a solipsistic leap. Mentally cause a hurricane localized to your back garden.


Conclusion: Monistic Idealism is true (P1-P8).


Regardless of having written up a series of premises, no argument has been made that results in this conclusion, therefore it's false.

Very simply: idealism could be true while also not being complete, and could therefore fall foul of all the contentions erected to support it.
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Sun May 20, 2018 7:34 pm
Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

But that's quite different to saying that reality itself is mental, which doesn't follow from the stated notions.


Of course. That initial definition was only describing both epistemological and ontological idealism. I made an argument for ontological idealism, not mere epistemological idealism. I'm arguing that reality is mental, and I gave argument for this with support. I didn't appeal to skepticism about our perception and the external world, I appealed to shared intuitions of monism and causation.



Self-defeating from the perspective of idealism. How can we know mind exists if reality is purely mental? Perhaps we made up the concept of mind, and it's just an illusion.


Actually, your statement is self-defeating. To know there is a knower, to perceive there is a perceiver, to think there is a thinker. I think, I am. Again, I didn't appeal to some sort of skepticism to make my case for idealism so there's no need to go there. Through introspection we have no problem knowing that we exist and are aware and have experiences. To claim otherwise is to contradict yourself. Consciousness can't be an illusion because illusions necessarily are perceptions which requires a perceiver. You can't be deceived if there's no you.


Mind also can't be reduced to non-physical as we know of no minds existing without a physical substrate, and the minds we do know of apparently cease existing when the physical substrate is damaged or dies.


First, the physical needs to be defined properly and I will argue that given your acknowledgment of epistemological idealism from earlier you will fail to properly define the physical. So this physical/non-physical dichotomy is meaningless until this issue is solved. What we can make sense of is the mental, and we know the mental is not reducible. If dualism is false, then you'll have to just stick with the mental. The mental itself is the substrate, the fundamental substance of reality.


An assertion that cannot be established from within the parametres of idealism, i.e it's self-refuting.


Again, not appealing to skepticism to make my case for idealism. I gave an argument from causation that shows a contradiction in substance dualism. You'll have to actually address my argument regarding the interaction problem I noted.


Or it's wholly in error because mind is body behavior, therefore wholly contingent on the existence of body, therefore actually just a function of it.


This was already addressed. Mind is not reducible. See the hard problem of consciousness. The qualitative and subjective aspects of consciousness are not identical structural, dynamical, and functional combinations of anything non-mental. Your body-body interaction idea makes no sense since that is an elimination of the mental which we know for sure exists. There's all sorts of skeptical scenarios you can put yourself in to doubt the external world (e.g. the matrix) but no matter which one you put yourself in, you're still conscious. You cannot doubt that you're conscious, your own admission of epistemological idealism affirms this.


Lots of repetition using different ways to declare the same assertion.


Not seeing how you get here at all.


Not established and therefore a solipsistic leap


If this is not established then you're saying the mental itself is not established which is tantamount to a denial of the obvious fact that consciousness exists. In fact, if you deny mental causation you will be cutting off the argument you would need to establish the existence of other minds so you would be the one lapsing into solipsism actually, if not eliminativism altogether.


no argument has been made that results in this conclusion, therefore it's false.


First off, if an argument fails to establish it's conclusion that does not mean the conclusion is false. That is a non-sequitur on your part. Second, I'm not seeing support for your claim here. I've given lengthy explanations for each premise, with scholarly citations included, and I'm not seeing you address them at all. Those paragraphs I wrote contain the meat of the argument which really explains how I get to each premise as I noted from the beginning.
Sun May 20, 2018 9:05 pm
Master_Ghost_KnightContributorUser avatarPosts: 2748Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:57 pmLocation: Netherlands Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Monistic Idealism wrote:This is an argument for Idealism: In philosophy, the group of philosophies which assert that reality, or reality as we can know it, is fundamentally mental, mentally constructed, or otherwise immaterial.

Yet you will have contradicted yourself by the end of this post.

Monistic Idealism wrote:I will lay out a rough sketch of the argument in formal terms and explain how I arrive at each premise and in order:
P1.) Mind exists (Introspection).

Ok granted.

Monistic Idealism wrote:P2.) Eliminating Consciousness is self-refuting (P1).

Eh..What? What exactly do you mean by that? Are you claiming that consciousness can not be snuffed?
What exactly do you mean by "consciousness" and "eliminating", specifically, because English is a tricky language, and I don't want to misrepresent you here. But this proposition doesn't seam to be coherent, nor relevant as you have not used it to reach your conclusion.

Monistic Idealism wrote:P3.) Mind cannot be reduced to non-mind (Hard Problem of Consciousness).

What? What do you mean by this? Did you just stated as a premise that A can not be not-A?

Monistic Idealism wrote:P4.) Substance Dualism is false (Mind-Body Problem).

I will grant you that, although you have not demonstrated it. However I do not see how having part of your conclusion as an a-priori premisse is sound logic.

Monistic Idealism wrote:P5.) Mind-Body Problem implies Monism (P4, Causal Closure).

Does it?

Monistic Idealism wrote:P6.) Non-Reductive Physicalism is false (Exclusion Problem).

Why?

Monistic Idealism wrote:P7.) There is mental causation (Introspection/Mind-Body Interaction).

Ok.

Monistic Idealism wrote:P8.) There is only mental causation (P5-P7, Exclusion Problem).

WOW...hold on. How the hell did you pull that rabbit out of the hat?
This is not granted.

Monistic Idealism wrote:Conclusion: Monistic Idealism is true (P1-P8).

Sorry, your conclusion does not follow.

Monistic Idealism wrote:P1.+P2.) We are conscious.

Well as far as I know, I think I'm conscious. However it jut seams polite to extend the courtesy to think that others are as well.

Monistic Idealism wrote:No matter what you're still conscious, this you definitely know for sure if there is anything that can be said to be known for sure. To claim otherwise would be a contradiction: you would be consciously denying that you're conscious and those who think otherwise are not only mistaken in their thinking but aren't actually thinking at all.

Well I'm not so sure about that. I'm pretty sure from this you never heard about schools of tough that postulates that even your own conscious is an illusion. If we built a self learning computer that reaches the conclusion that it is conscious, is it actually conscious? If we had made it to think that it is, how could it not? And what algorithm could it use to deduce otherwise?
You see the problem is, what exactly is conscious to begin with is rather vague. And until you can define that, judging if something is or isn't is kind of useless.

Monistic Idealism wrote:P3.) Given that we know the mental exists, we surely would like to explain it the same way we normally do by reducing it to something more fundamental than itself. The problem is the mental resists this reduction. As explained in the internet encyclopedia of philosophy (a peer-reviewed academic resource):

"In more detail, the challenge arises because it does not seem that the qualitative and subjective aspects of conscious experience—how consciousness “feels” and the fact that it is directly “for me”—fit into a physicalist ontology, one consisting of just the basic elements of physics plus structural, dynamical, and functional combinations of those basic elements. It appears that even a complete specification of a creature in physical terms leaves unanswered the question of whether or not the creature is conscious. And it seems that we can easily conceive of creatures just like us physically and functionally that nonetheless lack consciousness. This indicates that a physical explanation of consciousness is fundamentally incomplete: it leaves out what it is like to be the subject, for the subject."1


Thomas Nagel gives us a good example of this:

... If a mental event really is a physical event in this sense, and nothing else, then the physical event by itself, once its physical properties are understood, should likewise be sufficient for the taste of sugar, the feeling of pain, or whatever it is supposed to be identical with. But it doesn't seem to be. It seems conceivable, for any physical event, there should be a physical event without any experience at all. Experience of taste seems to be something extra, contingently related to the brain state- something produced rather than constituted by the brain state. So it cannot be identical to the brain state in the way water is identical to H20.”2


Or maybe consciousness is just a meaningless concept.



Oh and by the way, the reasons you are using to make such justifications, directly contradicts your very first statement. Because you are trying to argue a distinction by appealing to a physical entity that can act and yet not be conscious, which should not exist if there are no material things that exist outside of a mind.


But, I'm going to stop right here, as I feel like addressing anything else is a waste of time. You see, you have committed a fatal mistake that allot of philosophers do.
And that mistake is:
You are doing philosophy.

You are trying to make a claim about the nature of reality, and philosophy as useful a tool for doing that, as a cat in the trunk is as useful to running your car.

In order for you to be able to claim that substance dualism is nonsense, you had to appeal to the fact that minds can be haltered by impairing the physical brain.
An insight that you could have only gained by doing science, not philosophy. No amount of argumentation would be able to tell you that, much less so conclusively.

If you wanted to really wanted to know about this things, you would be going to the lab, do experiments and find out how brains work. You don't go into your study, lock yourself there, and expect to com up with answers which likely could only be pulled from one's rear end.
As far as I'm concerned you are playing the wrong game.

And this is a pet peeve that I have against philosophers in general, because they don't seem to get the point that what they are doing is utterly useless. You are not getting anywhere by arguing like this, and you never will, but they are never smart enough to be able to realize that.

When I was still in engineering school we used to have this joke about the paradox of the philosophy major.
And it goes something like this:
1. Philosophy is driven by the pursuit of knowledge about the world.
2. To be able to get a degree in philosophy, a candidate must study the subject for 3 years, and be knowledgeable in philosophy to the extent that it warrants a degree.
3. Epistemology is a basic course in philosophy taken on the first year, required but not sufficient to warrant a degree.
4. Epistemology teaches that philosophy is kind of useless to learn much else about the real world, and that they are better of switching to a science degree.
5. From 1, 3 and 4. If the student understand epistemology, they should understand that philosophy is useless and thus quit on the first year.
6. Given 5 and 2. How is it possible that there are philosophy majors?
Catch 22. Because if you had understood epistemology, you wouldn't have wasted your time on the rest and quit before getting the diploma. However if you stayed long enough to get diploma, it means that you didn't understood epistemology and you are thus undeserving of the degree.
"I have an irrefutable argument for the existence of...." NO, STOP! You are already wrong!
Sun May 20, 2018 11:15 pm
Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Eh..What? What exactly do you mean by that?


All that's being said here is that consciousness exists, which you already conceded, and that we can't deny this given premise 1. We cannot deny conscious, we cannot get rid of it, without contradicting ourselves. I went over this in the paragraphs that explain my argument.

What? What do you mean by this? Did you just stated as a premise that A can not be not-A?


I'm beginning to notice a pattern here: you didn't read my full post... From the very beginning I noted that I explain my premises in detail and how I arrive at each premise. If you scroll down just a bit on the OP you'll see I go over each premise with scholarly citations included. Please read the full post, thank you.

I will grant you that, although you have not demonstrated it. However I do not see how having part of your conclusion as an a-priori premisse is sound logic.


If only you have read my full post you would see I have indeed demonstrated it and I explain how it's relevant. Please read the OP in its entirety.

Does it?


Yes. All you have to do is read the OP in its entirety. You clearly don't understand the argument, or how I'm getting my premises and what they even mean, yet here you are criticizing as if you do... I have scholarly citations and everything backing up my assertions and demonstrating the validity of the form of my argument.

Well I'm not so sure about that. I'm pretty sure from this you never heard about schools of tough that postulates that even your own conscious is an illusion.


I'm aware of eliminativism and its self-refuting. Weird how the word "eliminate" is so alien to if you're so familiar with these schools of thought that consciousness is an illusion...

You see the problem is, what exactly is conscious to begin with is rather vague.


I'm not trying to be repetitive or mean when I say this, I say this to hammer in a crucial point for our discussion: please read what I write in its entirety. I went over this. Consciousness is first-person subjective awareness. There is what it's like for you to have experiences from a first-person perspective.This is consciousness.

Or maybe consciousness is just a meaningless concept.


Or maybe you're wrong and we have some actual thinking to do.

Oh and by the way, the reasons you are using to make such justifications, directly contradicts your very first statement. Because you are trying to argue a distinction by appealing to a physical entity that can act and yet not be conscious, which should not exist if there are no material things that exist outside of a mind.


I don't see how I'm doing that at all.

In order for you to be able to claim that substance dualism is nonsense, you had to appeal to the fact that minds can be haltered by impairing the physical brain.


Why do you have to add this unnecessary word "physical" in there? it's just a brain. No need to assume there's anything "physical", whatever that's supposed to mean.

As far as I'm concerned you are playing the wrong game.


Actually, that would be you. What you're espousing is scientism and that position is self-refuting. The very claims you're making are not themselves arrived at by experimentation or science, so you've refuted yourself. You're sawing off the branch you sit on. You use philosophy to dismiss it. There's no scientific experiment you can perform or cite that demonstrates your claim that science is the only way to know things or the best way to know things or that science can give you knowledge at all in the first place. Fail. No wonder the engineering department is not the philosophy department lol

And this is a pet peeve that I have against philosophers in general, because they don't seem to get the point that what they are doing is utterly useless. You are not getting anywhere by arguing like this, and you never will, but they are never smart enough to be able to realize that.
Mon May 21, 2018 12:40 am
Master_Ghost_KnightContributorUser avatarPosts: 2748Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:57 pmLocation: Netherlands Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

This is worse than I taught.
Monistic Idealism wrote:All that's being said here is that consciousness exists, which you already conceded, and that we can't deny this given premise 1.

If that is the case, then you are committing a fallacy of equivocation by stating that conscious and mind are the same thing. I could have stopped your argument right here, but let’s ignore that.
That being the case, your premises 1 and 2 simply boils down to this:
1. Assume that A is true.
2. If you assume that A is false then you would be contradicting yourself. Because you already assumed that A is true.
Now wasn’t that informative?

Monistic Idealism wrote:
What? What do you mean by this? Did you just stated as a premise that A can not be not-A?

I'm beginning to notice a pattern here: you didn't read my full post... From the very beginning I noted that I explain my premises in detail and how I arrive at each premise. If you scroll down just a bit on the OP you'll see I go over each premise with scholarly citations included. Please read the full post, thank you.

Well I have granted you the courtesy of allowing you to clarify yourself and to clearly define your terms. Since you refused, I’m happy to do that for you.
What you mean is “that the concept of the mind cannot be broken down into smaller pieces that are not by themselves minds”.
Well this is simply false, because we have done it.
I just didn’t want to believe it was this simple to rebut it.
But since you are adamant that I have not read your contentions, despite the fact that you have directly replied to my reply directly criticizing what you claim I did not read. Let’s carefully analyze it, so that you can feel the thrust of what is about to come:
Monistic Idealism wrote:Given that we know the mental exists, we surely would like to explain it the same way we normally do by reducing it to something more fundamental than itself.

Sure.
Monistic Idealism wrote:The problem is the mental resists this reduction. As explained in the internet encyclopedia of philosophy (a peer-reviewed academic resource)
.
What? Mind justifying that? Actually don’t bother. This is a fallacy. You are not even claiming that something is impossible or logically incoherent. You are just claiming that because you couldn’t do it, and that your source couldn’t do it either, than that must mean than someone smarter couldn’t come along and do it instead. Ain’t that just nice?
Well as it turns out someone has, and someone did. Or have you not heard any news about AI development?
And guess what? They were not doing philosophy.
I’m not even done with a quarter of your paragraph, and your contention is already out the window. But let’s continue.
Monistic Idealism wrote:Neurons and their cells are just other cells that performs functions like any other cells. They're not magical, they're not special, they are describable with observation just like any other cell.

I agree, 100%. If only you had just remembered that in the very next sentence:
Monistic Idealism wrote:If the mind were identical to such, then describing such would be enough, but we know that it's not.

What? Is this your idea of a joke? Am I being punked? Are there people with cameras that are going to jump out of my closet and say that I’m on candid camera?
Where do I even start?
“but we know that it's not.”
We do? Care to justify that? That’s it? We just have to accept this because you said so?
This is essentially what your arguments boils down to. When you claim that you explained or supported your position essentially what you have done is. “Here is what I believe, here is some trivia about it. Oh, and there is this other position that contradicts my view, but pay no attention to it because trust me it is self-contradictory and I don’t need to explain why.”
Stellar argumentation skills right there.
But that is not even the worst part. The worst part is that on the very previous sentence you just claimed there is nothing special about neurons, and what they do can be fully described by the interactions of its parts. And because (as you yourself agree) minds exists on top of this neural substrate, you should have thus concluded that minds are also not special and should be fully explainable by the interactions of the neurons.
Instead you do the exact opposite, claiming that this more basic description is not sufficient to describe a mind, and that you need something else more. This is the very definition of substance dualism, a position you so adamantly reject in order to justify your position.
WTF man?
How can you possibly not see this as ad-hoc nonsensical drible?
Monistic Idealism wrote:And no, you cannot appeal to some possible future discovery

I can’t? Why not? How about that stuff that we do know today? Will you allow me to use that, or is it forbidden knowledge as well?

How long must you run around in circles before you realize you are not getting anywhere with this? And you never will.

Monistic Idealism wrote:I have scholarly citations and everything

Oh good for you then. Maybe you should have consulted the right scholars, like neuroscientists or AI researchers. You know people who actually do this for a living, who have physical proof of their statements. Not people that sit on arm chairs all day smoking pipe and have a 0 contribution to the betterment of mankind.
Or maybe you can ask them to come here so I can debate them. When you have an original idea of your own, and you want to debate me yourself, then let me know.

Monistic Idealism wrote:I'm aware of eliminativism and its self-refuting.

Are you going to justify that? Maybe you should let all those “eliminativists” know so that they can stop wasting their time thinking that their philosophical constructs are internally coherent because you have just decreed them to be self-refuting.


Monistic Idealism wrote:Weird how the word "eliminate" is so alien to if you're so familiar with these schools of thought that consciousness is an illusion...

Weird that you, a self-proclaimed philosopher doesn’t know that the English language have particular quirks such as words having more than one meaning and can refer to different things in different contexts.
For example on your premise 2 “Eliminating Consciousness is self-refuting”,
I could have interpreted it to mean “that you cannot destroy a consciousness”. That although less tautological as your actual argument, it is easily refutable if you grant the observation that there are other conscious people outside your own, and that those people die and that their consciousness are snuffed with them.

You will never get anywhere with this by doing philosophy, smarter people than you have tried and failed. Their mistake was the failure to realize that philosophy is useless in this matter.
And it would do you good not to ignore this point, as it simply defeats this entire exercise. There is no coming back from this. And you should have known this, had you payed attention to epistemology.
I think I have killed this topic to death. So the following is just a blooper reel.
the reasons you are using to make such justifications, directly contradicts your very first statement. Because you are trying to argue a distinction by appealing to a physical entity that can act and yet not be conscious, which should not exist if there are no material things that exist outside of a mind.

Monistic Idealism wrote:I don't see how I'm doing that at all.

Monistic Idealism wrote:Neurons and their cells are just [like any] other cells […] They're not magical, they're not special

Monistic Idealism wrote:If the mind were identical to such, […], but we know that it's not.

Monistic Idealism wrote:Substance Dualism is false

Monistic Idealism wrote:in real life we can see how brain damage does indeed damage the mind and can alter personality.

Monistic Idealism wrote:Anything that exists would fundamentally be mental in nature


:facepalm:
"I have an irrefutable argument for the existence of...." NO, STOP! You are already wrong!
Mon May 21, 2018 12:37 pm
SparhafocPosts: 2516Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Instead of responding line by line (particularly when all the substantive points get ignored), I'll just point out that I've done all this before in the past (quite possibly with the OP in a different guise) and know the idealist position sufficiently well to know what the problems are with it, so I don't need to rehearse them here.

Instead, I'll just ask questions that might provoke some thought.

Is all death suicide?
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Mon May 21, 2018 1:50 pm
Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

If that is the case, then you are committing a fallacy of equivocation by stating that conscious and mind are the same thing. I could have stopped your argument right here, but let’s ignore that.


I've given my definitions, I've laid it out. I'm not equivocating if you just happen to have a different philosophy of mind.

Now wasn’t that informative?


P2 trivially follows from P1. It is only meant to state outright that eliminativism is false, if only you had read the OP in full from the beginning...

Well I have granted you the courtesy of allowing you to clarify yourself and to clearly define your terms.


I did all of that in the OP, you just ignored it... Your failure to read my clarifications is not my problem. It makes no sense for you to object to something that you admit you don't understand. Please read my clarifications in the OP instead of just the formal argument in the beginning.

You are not even claiming that something is impossible or logically incoherent. You are just claiming that because you couldn’t do it, and that your source couldn’t do it either, than that must mean than someone smarter couldn’t come along and do it instead


Yes I am, you even have a quote of me showing there's a contradiction with reductionism. If the mind were the brain then everything that is true of the brain is true of the mind and vice versa, they would be identical. But since describing brain states is insufficient, then they cannot be identical. Clearly I am stating that there is a contradiction here, you're just not reading what I write...

Well as it turns out someone has, and someone did. Or have you not heard any news about AI development?
And guess what? They were not doing philosophy.


Yes and so do the scholars I've been citing on this issue. These are the leading figures in the very field we are discussing. That doesn't address my argument at all.

We do? Care to justify that? That’s it? We just have to accept this because you said so?


I cited arguments from The Encyclopedia of Philosophy and Thomas Nagel... Can you please just read the OP in its entirety for goodness sakes. Don't rush through it, don't let your emotions take control, just read and assess logically.

But that is not even the worst part. The worst part is that on the very previous sentence you just claimed there is nothing special about neurons, and what they do can be fully described by the interactions of its parts. And because (as you yourself agree) minds exists on top of this neural substrate-


Stop right there. I never claimed minds exist on top of this neural substrate. Total misrepresentation on your part. I simply stated that if the mind were identical to neurons and their functions then describing them would be sufficient to describe mind, but it's not, hence they're not identical. If you go to the OP and look at the corresponding paragraph for the premise you will see arguments with academic citations.


I can’t? Why not? How about that stuff that we do know today?


I already went over this. If they were identical then it would follow logically and necessarily that there would be nothing to bridge. If A=neurons and B=mind and A=B then describing A should describe B, but it doesn't, which would be impossible if they are identical. Which means they can't be identical.

Maybe you should have consulted the right scholars, like neuroscientists or AI researchers. You know people who actually do this for a living, who have physical proof of their statements.


I actually have a degree in psychology and have indeed spoken with such people. I can cite Ai researchers who have come to Idealism like Dr. Bernardo Kastrup. Neuroscientists like Dr. Sam Harris agree that mind is irreducible, though he doesn't make it to idealism, he's still affirming the premise I'm affirming.

Are you going to justify that?


I already went over this in the OP, if you would only read instead of attacking straw men... If you accept premise 1, which you have, then eliminativism is already rejected. You would seem to be admitting already that you have justification for this if you accept premise 1. Second, if I eliminativism is true then I'm not only wrong in my thinking about, but i would also not be thinking at all. How is it possible for me to think and not think? That's a contradiction... You would believe there's no beliefs, you would be consciously aware that there's no consciousness, it just makes no sense.

Weird that you, a self-proclaimed philosopher doesn’t know that the English language have particular quirks such as words having more than one meaning and can refer to different things in different contexts.


We're in a philosophy forum talking about philosophy of mind, and you just professed yourself to be some knowledgable person on schools of thought about consciousness being an illusion... You have all the context you need, you're just a philosophy of mind noob. It's clear as day.

the reasons you are using to make such justifications, directly contradicts your very first statement. Because you are trying to argue a distinction by appealing to a physical entity that can act and yet not be conscious, which should not exist if there are no material things that exist outside of a mind.


I never once stated that it was a physical entity. Read what I actually write. I only noted the failures of reductionism there. A lot of your failures here would have been avoided had you only read the OP in its entirety....
Tue May 22, 2018 4:57 am
Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Instead of responding line by line (particularly when all the substantive points get ignored), I'll just point out that I've done all this before in the past (quite possibly with the OP in a different guise) and know the idealist position sufficiently well to know what the problems are with it, so I don't need to rehearse them here.


k well my argument stands un-rebutted then. You can disagree but you've offered no justification for your disagreement. I have an argument with support, you don't, just so everyone is clear.

Is all death suicide?


No.
Tue May 22, 2018 5:04 am
SparhafocPosts: 2516Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Monistic Idealism wrote:k well my argument stands un-rebutted then. You can disagree but you've offered no justification for your disagreement. I have an argument with support, you don't, just so everyone is clear.


Who is 'everyone'? Only two people have replied to your post, unfavourably from both. There are perhaps a dozen frequent members of the site, so it's not like you're making an argument seen by a silent mass of people. There's no platform here, it's just a conversation between you and anyone who chooses to interact with you. As such, you're talking directly to me, or to anyone else who opts to reply, ergo if I don't consider your original argument to be supported, coherent, or soundly reasoned, then it is me you need to convince - not some undefined other people who aren't actually here. Or you can elect not to try to convince me that your arguments hold weight and declare it instead.

Let's recall the nature of a logical argument at its most basic: a series of statements used to persuade someone of something.

I explained already why your OP failed to persuade me, and you just declared the fact I wasn't persuaded as being my failing to either a) failing to read your entire post (which I did) or you ignored the substance of my disagreement, which makes it seem like a pointless endeavour for me to spend more time interacting in detail.

Given your chosen name on joining this site, the fact you didn't introduce yourself but just opted to post about a topic that you also named yourself for, my personal feeling is that it is very unlikely you're open to discourse, but rather are looking to engage in polemic on a single issue you define and limit. You can, of course, elect to do that, but you can't expect other people to conform to it. Either it is a discussion, or it's not. My sense so far is that it's not. So why would I want to go through the motions?

Your argument was rebutted in the very first sentence of my reply: you've manufactured a tautology then mistaken your tautological map for the terrain.

But if you want to pretend otherwise, that's fine. I am not investing my ego into a particular philosophical position because, to me, that's a fundamental misapprehension of the point of philosophy and suggests that the reasoning is motivated towards a secondary agenda.

Thus, as I said, I will just ask questions that might provoke thought, whether that be in you, me or others is fine.



Monistic Idealism wrote:
Sparhafoc wrote:Is all death suicide?


No.


:D

Fantastic. Next question:

Why does brain trauma and damage result in changes to the way the mind functions?
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Tue May 22, 2018 5:51 am
SparhafocPosts: 2516Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

http://ase.tufts.edu/cogstud/dennett/pa ... almers.htm

Facing Backwards on the Problem of Consciousness

Daniel C. Dennett, Center for Cognitive Studies, November 10, 1995

http://ase.tufts.edu/cogstud/dennett/pa ... almers.htm

Chalmers recommends a parallel with physics, but it backfires. He suggests that a theory of consciousness should "take experience itself as a fundamental feature of the world, alongside mass, charge, and space-time." As he correctly notes, "No attempt is made [by physicists] to explain these features in terms of anything simpler," but they do cite the independent evidence that has driven them to introduce these fundamental categories. Chalmers needs a similar argument in support of his proposal, but "when we ask what data are driving him to introduce this concept, the answer is disappointing: It is a belief in a fundamental phenomenon of 'experience'. The introduction of the concept does not do any explanatory work. The evidential argument is circular." (Roberts, fn.8) We can see this by comparing Chalmers' proposal with yet one more imaginary non-starter: cutism, the proposal that since some things are just plain cute, and other things aren't cute at all--you can just see it, however hard it is to describe or explain--we had better postulate cuteness as a fundamental property of physics alongside mass, charge and space-time. (Cuteness is not a functional property, of course; I can imagine somebody who wasn't actually cute at all but who nevertheless functioned exactly as if cute--trust me.) Cutism is in even worse shape than vitalism. Nobody would have taken vitalism seriously for a minute if the vitalists hadn't had a set of independently describable phenomena--of reproduction, metabolism, self-repair and the like--that their postulated fundamental life-element was hoped to account for. Once these phenomena were otherwise accounted for, vitalism fell flat, but at least it had a project. Until Chalmers gives us an independent ground for contemplating the drastic move of adding "experience" to mass, charge, and space-time, his proposal is one that can be put on the back burner, way back.
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Tue May 22, 2018 6:10 am
Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Who is 'everyone'?


Anybody who is reading this. There's only 2 other people who have responded but that doesn't mean only you two have read it and just because you disagree that doesn't mean those who viewed it disagreed.

Let's recall the nature of a logical argument at its most basic: a series of statements used to persuade someone of something.


That's one point of an argument but that's not what an argument is. It's about connecting premises to a conclusion through valid reason, with support for each premise.

I explained already why your OP failed to persuade me


And I addressed your points line by line, then you failed to give a rebuttal from there. So my arguments still stand.


Why does brain trauma and damage result in changes to the way the mind functions?


Because substance dualism is false and monism is true.

Daniel C. Dennett


You're unironically citing this guy? lol

"To put it as clearly as I can: in his book, Consciousness Explained, Dennett denies the existence of consciousness. He continues to use the word, but he means something different by it. For him, it refers only to third-person phenomena, not to the first-person conscious feelings and experiences we all have. For Dennett there is no difference between us humans and complex zombies who lack any inner feelings, because we are all just complex zombies. ...I regard his view as self-refuting because it denies the existence of the data which a theory of consciousness is supposed to explain...Here is the paradox of this exchange: I am a conscious reviewer consciously answering the objections of an author who gives every indication of being consciously and puzzlingly angry. I do this for a readership that I assume is conscious. How then can I take seriously his claim that consciousness does not really exist?" -John Searle

Source: http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archive ... -exchange/
Tue May 22, 2018 3:31 pm
SparhafocPosts: 2516Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Monistic Idealism wrote:Anybody who is reading this. There's only 2 other people who have responded but that doesn't mean only you two have read it and just because you disagree that doesn't mean those who viewed it disagreed.


Oddly, you have once again overlooked pertinent components of what I wrote to focus solely on the bit you want to. Obviously, this doesn't engender in me the notion that you want to engage in substantive discussion with me, and it is why I sense your desire to polemicize. We all have our foibles, and one of mine is that I am not at all keen on being polemicized at.

Note the population of the forum. It's very low. You may get a few more humans reading or even replying, but not an awful lot. At any given moment, the predominant viewership are comprised of bots. Perhaps the AI will find your arguments convincing, although I very much expect not.


Monistic Idealism wrote:
Let's recall the nature of a logical argument at its most basic: a series of statements used to persuade someone of something.


That's one point of an argument but that's not what an argument is. It's about connecting premises to a conclusion through valid reason, with support for each premise.


As I said: at its most basic.


Monistic Idealism wrote:
I explained already why your OP failed to persuade me


And I addressed your points line by line, then you failed to give a rebuttal from there. So my arguments still stand.


And any interested party can see all the bits you didn't respond to, and how that has coloured your rebuttal.

Similarly, they can readily detect from that, as I already mentioned, that you are engaging in polemic, not discussion. I'm not interested in being polemicized at when it comes to your preferred philosophical ideology, so I have elected to change the nature of our exchange from my part, at least. Perhaps others will be interested in satisfying your itch.

Instead, as I've pointed out already, I will ask questions.

From hereon, I won't respond to any more I did / you did frivolousness.

Here's the point of those questions as I noted: to potentially provoke thought. That may occur in you, that may occur in me, that may occur in others reading. Ideally, it will occur in all of us.

For my part, I know your position nearly as well as you presumably do. I know the literature. I know the history. I also know the reasons why I can't accept that position, and why it's rather fallen out of fashion in the last century. Rather than dispute with you in a pseudo formal debate format, I instead will ask questions that are relevant to me and to how I think about these issues to see how interesting your responses are. Perhaps your responses will then engender in me a novel thought I might not otherwise have had, and consequently I will also gain something from our exchange. But if I am not going to profit from our exchange, then I won't waste any more time. With all respect to your good self, I am sure the primary authors are a better source for your argument than you, and if I am not going to be able to actively interrogate, then I may just as well read them.

For clarity and full disclosure: I don't know what I think when it comes to this topic, or many of the primary philosophical quandaries. I do know what I don't think is true, but I am not so certain there's only actually 1 contextual domain from which to judge, and perhaps in restricted settings, or under specific remits, an otherwise flawed position can actually offer some utility.


Monistic Idealism wrote:
Why does brain trauma and damage result in changes to the way the mind functions?


Because substance dualism is false and monism is true.


That contains about as much information as your answer to the first question, and doesn't seem to follow, so could you explain your answer, please?


Monistic Idealism wrote:
Daniel C. Dennett


You're unironically citing this guy? lol


What do you mean?


Monistic Idealism wrote:John Searle


So if I respond: You're unironically citing this guy? lol What would you take away from such a response?

It would seem intended only to condescend, no? The tone would suggest that 'this guy' lacks credibility. Further, the tone also seems to want to condescend at me for having chosen to cite him.

I think my motivation for not joining in on this exchange format is pretty clear now.

Like I said, I'm not here for your preferred disputation format. You can keep going if you choose; I certainly can't stop you - but I probably won't be joining you either.


So onto the desired future...

While you're unpacking your last response, I'll raise the next question:

Is the persistence of perception an endless parade of fortuitous circumstances, or is that persistence independently or externally maintained?
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Tue May 22, 2018 5:06 pm
Master_Ghost_KnightContributorUser avatarPosts: 2748Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:57 pmLocation: Netherlands Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Monistic Idealism wrote:P2 trivially follows from P1. It is only meant to state outright that eliminativism is false, if only you had read the OP in full from the beginning...

Sorry, you haven't done such a thing. Because eliminativism doesn't equate minds and consciousness as the same thing.
It freely accepts that minds exists, but not consciousness.
What you have essentially done is to erect straw-man.
And it doesn't do you any good to have as premisses statements designed exclusively to negate opposing views, you need to start from a baseline that they both agree and show why their position is wrong and yours is right. If you are just going to flat out state that all points of views except your own are wrong right out of the gate, you shouldn't be surprised that only your own is left.

What you are doing is not argumentation, it's masturbation.

You are not even claiming that something is impossible or logically incoherent. You are just claiming that because you couldn’t do it, and that your source couldn’t do it either, than that must mean than someone smarter couldn’t come along and do it instead

Monistic Idealism wrote:Yes I am,

Monistic Idealism wrote:The problem is the mental resists this reduction. As explained in the internet encyclopedia of philosophy (a peer-reviewed academic resource)

No you are not!

Monistic Idealism wrote:If the mind were the brain then everything that is true of the brain is true of the mind and vice versa, they would be identical. But since describing brain states is insufficient, then they cannot be identical.

Except, there is a problem with this. As I have stated before, but you have done the courtesy of ignoring, this is categorically wrong because we have done that which you claim cannot be done.
We have managed to emulate full brains on computers. This is not an unknow! We have done it!
Besides it has also been explained to you that this statement implies substance dualism. Either neurons are sufficient to describe the mind, in which case you have physicalism, or you require something more than neurons to describe the mind, although the second is not physicalism, it is substance dualism. Either substance dualism is true or it is not true. You cannot in one argument use substance dualism to negate a premise, and then turn around and say that substance dualism is false to negate another, because that would make the previous one false.
So which is it?

Monistic Idealism wrote:I cited arguments from The Encyclopedia of Philosophy and Thomas Nagel... Can you please just read the OP in its entirety for goodness sakes. Don't rush through it, don't let your emotions take control, just read and assess logically.

I have read your post, from top to bottom.
Granted I did not bother to read your sources, because frankly they are quite lengthy and I don’t have time for that shit. I’m here debating with you. If I wanted to debate Thomas Nagel, I would have write him a letter, I don’t need you for that shit.
In any case it is not required to make an informed statement on this, as I have stated, you are not even playing the right game, neither are your sources. When someone challenges on that basic level, you cannot just continue as if that wasn’t thing, none of your sources addresses this. This is not just an argument that defeats the arguments that you made, this defeats all arguments that you can possibly make. And until you address that, you’re a just doing an exercise in futility, and I have no interest in engaging in that.

Monistic Idealism wrote:Stop right there. I never claimed minds exist on top of this neural substrate.

So how do you account for when you said this?
Monistic Idealism wrote:However, in real life we can see how brain damage does indeed damage the mind and can alter personality.[…] This doesn't make any sense if the mental and the non-mental existed independently.

So you either accept that it sits on top of a neural substrate, or you have to concede that this argument is false.
You cannot have your cake and eat it too.

Monistic Idealism wrote:If A=neurons and B=mind and A=B then describing A should describe B, but it doesn't, which would be impossible if they are identical. Which means they can't be identical.

Now you are arguing that because a pile of sand is not the same as a grain of sand that therefore allot of grains of sand cannot describe a pile of sand.
And by the way, news flash, we have managed to create virtual minds with virtual neurons, without resorting too magic. You are just plain and simply wrong! No philosophy required.

And out goes centuries of theory of mind out the window, with a single development in the field of AI and neuroscience.
You should wonder why that is.
"I have an irrefutable argument for the existence of...." NO, STOP! You are already wrong!
Tue May 22, 2018 7:29 pm
SparhafocPosts: 2516Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

If A=neurons and B=mind and A=B then describing A should describe B, but it doesn't,


Whereas, if A=neurons and B=mind and B is an emergent property of lots of A operating in conjunction, then describing A wouldn't describe B, only how B exists.
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Tue May 22, 2018 9:09 pm
Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

We all have our foibles, and one of mine is that I am not at all keen on being polemicized at.


Great. Still not seeing a rebuttal to the arguments I've presented. You can switch topics all you like but my arguments and rebuttals to your claims still stand as everyone can see for themselves.

As I said: at its most basic.


Right, and that's what I'm getting at. Definition of "Argument": Any group of propositions of which one is claimed to follow from the others, which are regarded as providing support or grounds for the truth of that one"

Source: Source: Copi, I. M., Cohen, C., & McMahon, K. (2011). Introduction to Logic (14th ed.) p. 6. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Notice how persuasion doesn't even enter into the equation here.

From hereon, I won't respond to any more I did / you did frivolousness.


So you don't have a response to the case for idealism. Great.

That contains about as much information as your answer to the first question, and doesn't seem to follow, so could you explain your answer, please?


This is all explained in the OP. You're just asking me to spoon feed you at this point. You want me to chew it up for you too? The mind-body problem originates with substance dualism. If you avoid substance dualism you avoid the mind-body problem. If mind-body are one substance then it makes sense how interaction occurs as even materialists claim. The thing is the materialists face the hard problem and so they don't have the same advantages as the idealist. Given that causation is restricted to closed domains, and there is only one type of substance and properties then idealism can indeed account for this while non-reductive materialism cannot.

What do you mean?


The guy denies consciousness. You willing to believe that there's no such thing as beliefs? If so then you're believing in a contradiction.


So if I respond: You're unironically citing this guy? lol What would you take away from such a response?


John Searle is not encouraging you to believe in a contradiction like Dennett is. Dennett holds a minority position that is criticized even by fellow materialist as Searle points out.

Is the persistence of perception an endless parade of fortuitous circumstances, or is that persistence independently or externally maintained?


I subscribe to Cosmic Idealism which states that: "All concrete facts are grounded in facts about the mental states of (or the mentality associated with) a single cosmic entity. This view has strengths stemming from unity and comprehensibility of the fundamental properties, as well as a particularly straightforward story about causal interaction, which comes down to mental-mental interaction in the mind of a single subject."

Source: Chalmers, David (forthcoming). Idealism and the Mind-Body Problem. In William Seager (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Panpsychism. Routledge.

Whereas, if A=neurons and B=mind and B is an emergent property of lots of A operating in conjunction, then describing A wouldn't describe B, only how B exists.


If B is an emergent property then you're saying reductionism is false, which means you're affirming Premise 3 of my argument. The problem from there is you will face the exclusion problem as noted by Premise 6.
Wed May 23, 2018 7:10 am
Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Sorry, you haven't done such a thing.


Um, yes I have... If mind exists then it's not the case that mind does not exist. That's how identity works, unless you're trying to claim contradictions are true. In which case why bother having this discussion? lol


Because eliminativism doesn't equate minds and consciousness as the same thing. It freely accepts that minds exists, but not consciousness.


Not it does not. Eliminativism is a full blown denial of mental states and consciousness. Eliminativism claims there is only the body and behavior and any talk of the mind or consciousness or experience is just an artifact of a cartesian heritage and folk psychology which are completely mistaken. Eliminativists claim there are no mental states, no first-person subjective awareness, no qualia, no thoughts or beliefs or feelings etc.

And it doesn't do you any good to have as premisses statements designed exclusively to negate opposing views, you need to start from a baseline that they both agree and show why their position is wrong and yours is right


I do, and this all starts with premise 1. Given that consciousness exists, we want to explain it. Well given that it fails to be reduced then we have to confront our potential lapse into substance dualism. This is avoided by going into idealism as shown in the argument.

No you are not!


This is hilarious you claim I'm not then cite a quote of of me demonstrating that I am lol

We have managed to emulate full brains on computers. This is not an unknow! We have done it!


That's nice, dear. No matter how much we've emulated brains that doesn't tell us what it's like to experience smell and color etc. from the subjective first-person perspective. No amount of describing neurons tells us what it's like to have an experience. If consciousness were identical to such neurons then describing them would enough, but it's obvious here that it's not. Either you're saying there is a bridge you cannot gap, which means reductionism is false, or you're saying there is no bridge to gap, which means you're saying there is nothing it is like to have an experience (e.g. eliminativism). Pick your poison.

Besides it has also been explained to you that this statement implies substance dualism. Either neurons are sufficient to describe the mind, in which case you have physicalism, or you require something more than neurons to describe the mind, although the second is not physicalism, it is substance dualism.


Nope, that's the problem for you. As an idealist, neurons are reducible to phenomenal properties. They are described by experience and can be reduced to such. it is you, the materialist, that fails to reduce consciousness to neurons. As an idealist I get to keep irreducible consciousness without lapsing into substance dualism, while you will have to lapse into substance dualism or eliminativism as Jaegwon Kim pointed out.

So how do you account for when you said this?


I already explained this. All I was doing was noting how reductionism is contradictory. Given the commitments of reductionism, you will land in a self-refuting position. That is all.

So you either accept that it sits on top of a neural substrate, or you have to concede that this argument is false.
You cannot have your cake and eat it too.


This is a false dichotomy. I've already gone over how if the mind "sits on top of a neural substrate" then you will face the exclusion problem. This is just the mind-body problem all over again which is merely couched in terms of properties instead of substances as even the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy notes on its article on dualism (see the section on property dualism).

Now you are arguing that because a pile of sand is not the same as a grain of sand that therefore allot of grains of sand cannot describe a pile of sand.


The pile of sand is reducible to the sand. It's just sand and more sand, nothing special. If the mind were reducible to neurons then it would just be neurons and more neurons. Describing neurons would describe the mind, just like how describing the sand would describe the pile. But this isn't the case when it comes to the mind. Insert modus tollens and you arrive at materialism being false.

virtual minds with virtual neurons


You can have all sorts of programs that have behavior than can convince another its conscious but that doesn't mean its conscious. A puppet, no matter how sophisticated, is still a puppet. There is no first-person subjective awareness in a puppet just as there is none in an AI program: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TryOC83PH1g
Wed May 23, 2018 7:36 am
Master_Ghost_KnightContributorUser avatarPosts: 2748Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:57 pmLocation: Netherlands Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Can a computer be conscious?
"I have an irrefutable argument for the existence of...." NO, STOP! You are already wrong!
Wed May 23, 2018 7:47 am
Monistic IdealismPosts: 362Joined: Sun May 20, 2018 3:16 am Gender: Male

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Can a computer be conscious?



Way to completely ignore my rebuttals.

No, a computer cannot be conscious, it can only simulate consciousness as Searle pointed out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TryOC83PH1g
Wed May 23, 2018 8:06 am
SparhafocPosts: 2516Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: The Case for Idealism

Monistic Idealism wrote:
Can a computer be conscious?


Way to completely ignore my rebuttals. (going to have to start striking through all the fapping going on here)

No, a computer cannot be conscious, it can only simulate consciousness as Searle pointed out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TryOC83PH1g



Then can a human be conscious?

How can you tell the difference between the quality of consciousness a human allegedly possesses, and the allegedly simulated consciousness a computer is limited to possess?
"a reprehensible human being"
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
Wed May 23, 2018 8:10 am
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