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Old 10-17-2018, 01:25 PM   #51
carlo
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

As to knowledge and epistemology the act of knowing can be related to two aspects, percept and thinking. Modern man sees knowledge, in most venues , as a "perception' and so the scientist will theorize as to the existence of atoms, molecules , mesons, quarks and others. This is a continuation of the idea that knowledge is "perception" whether through the senses or through ingenious devices such as microscopes, et al .

This is an approach that separates Man from the object of his study and considers Man as no more than a speck of dust in the cosmos. Science, in modernity, is the science of the "percept". It doesn't mean that the scientist doesn't "think" but he, perforce via the institutional ism of the work is mandated to "find the object" which explains the other object. A causes or follows B which in turn is related to C which must be sensory bound and in this manner observable.

Screaming in the above is that "thinking" must be included in this knowledge but thinking in the above is considered no more than a methodology which leads to the preconceived objects we are looking for, a fifth wheel whether realized or not.

I'll skip a lot in the middle to state aphoristically that the thoughts of the object of our attention are the realities which complete human knowledge . For example, I look at that thing on my shoulders and will call it "head" and the Italian will call it "testa" and the German will call it "kopf" but the thought involved is the same for all three of the nationalities. The "thought" of head, testa, and kopf is the same across the world which is merged into the nature of , in this case, individual nations and language.

This leads to the picture of man perceiving and bringing forth thoughts to complete the picture of knowledge. Man, in knowing, is a co creator of world process as what he perceives is only half of the reality for the thought, which is the "concept" or higher up the "idea" is the supersensible aspect of the object of attention, or in this case the "head".

When Man "thinks" he "senses" the higher portion of the object of his attention which again are the "concept" and "idea" which is a more generalized "concept" which is singular.

In another way of speaking the "tree" is the outer manifestation of the "concept of the tree" to which in his thinking as exploration, merges and brings forth, as translator into his language, the name "tree".

Through reasoned thinking man can connect the concepts and ideas whereas in the intellectual the individual concepts are delineated such as "tree" .

Knowledge, as practiced above, can be given to others as when one reads or studies the written or spoken word the activity of consideration of the other's thoughtful presentation is "proof" . It is also possible to fall astray and for another to clarify or correct the presenter for as one enters into that world of the supersensible the concepts and ideas do not belong to the presenter but are the "hidden" manifestations of the sensory.

Knowledge completes with the individual man brings forth concept and sensory perceptions into a merged whole. It should be noted that Man, himself, initially breaks the reality apart in his studies and then places them back together in his thought borne activity. If one only "sees" then there is no need to have a science of perception only, for we are all quite capable of "seeing" without the science of modernity.

"In thinking I experience myself united with the stream of cosmic existence."

As addendum, the study of thinking is in order but Man cannot study this activity while in the process of thinking and therefore it can only be studied in hindsight. Somewhere Moses was told that he could only look at creation from behind and that was through thinking.

Thinking is a spiritual activity but not necessarily what materialistic men and Hume will have you believe what "spirit" is, or obviously that it is not. LOL

To be clear, when a man enters into the realm of the spiritual he also is able to "perceive" spiritual realities which are not sense bound and so the idea of "percept" also includes this higher reality, the realm of the spirit. One can and should say that the earth bound sensory is the outer manifestation of the spiritual to which , through thinking, the human being is able to travel or bring within ones being.

Last edited by carlo; 10-17-2018 at 01:33 PM.
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Old 10-17-2018, 04:51 PM   #52
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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I think the loop is simply an artifact of language and symbols. When we handle information, we need qualifiers like truth, fact, knowledge. Information and communication is based on "true", "false" and varying degrees of "maybe".

I think what this particular strain of skeptics are really observing is that it seems impossible to know if information is complete.

But to jump from that too "we can't know anything for certain" is just folly. I usually ask such people to do stuff like "put your unprotected hand in a fire" or "jump off a tall cliff with no safety gear and report back to me". It is tongue-in-cheek and said jokingly, but there is an element of seriousness to it. Our models for the world work just fine. That we might not be able to use language to prove its own infallibility doesn't mean everything is possible and nothing so far in our existence or history indicates that it is.

So how do we find knowledge in such a system? That's actually rather brilliantly simple. We compare it. We might not know if information is complete, but we can look at specific pieces of information and see if they work. As long as the claims actually relate to something, this is not problematic. And now everything is not possible. If person A says "Hamburg is the capital of France" and person B says "Paris is the capital of France", it is trivial to show that one of them is right.

And if someone objects "Well, the information is incomplete, under some specific criteria we don't know yet everybody might be wrong about Paris!" - then you simply note that their objection defeats itself. We could construct a similar scenario where their objection is also incomplete. By going down their route, they are implicitly making language meaningless. And if language is meaningless, we can't use language to object to anything.

The problem isn't the skeptic. The problem is the person claiming to be a skeptic, but who just wants a cheap excuse to ignore anything he dislikes.
I don't see how this kind of skepticism makes language meaningless. The relation between language and the world could be such that we are only able to theorize about the external world, but not able to prove or know anything about it. In such a scenario we could plausibly still make relative claims - p is more likely to be true than q - that make use of concepts like "truth," "evidence," and "false" without ever being able to justifiably claim to know that p is true or false.
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Old 10-17-2018, 05:18 PM   #53
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Originally Posted by Do0rDoNot View Post
1) People make measurements
How are those measurements certain?
Because the instruments were calibrated
Why are the calibration techniques valid?
Because we used a ruler
How do you know your ruler is accurate?
Because we lazer measured it
How do you know your lazer is accurate?
Because it was programmed with Pi and convert radians to degrees
How do you know Pi works?

When you dig into what you and neeeell call the scientific method and empiricism it comes down to sloppy human slapping around and assumptions. The religious point of view comes down to the exact same thing. So when someone asks for 'evidence' of God that's about the same thing as me asking for evidence that our number theory or that logic is correct. Give me direct evidence that the law of noncontradiction exists.
I agree that central to the scientific method and empiricism are a set of of revisable assumptions (or dogmas) about how to learn about the world. The Cartesian idea that we can derive all knowledge from a set of known axioms has never succeeded. Nonetheless, that doesn't mean that all such assumptions are of equal value. For instance, science as intellectual project exploring the natural worlds rests on a set of assumptions about the world. So do various religions and philosophies. We can prefer some assumptions because of their compatibility with these projects.

Arguing that naturalism or theism taken in isolation are more likely true on the basis of their differing foundational assumptions seems unlikely to succeed. But we can and do argue all the time about the value of different assumptions or methods for adopting new beliefs. Here we can distinguish between better and worse on the basis of goals - including the goal of seeking truth given certain assumptions about the world. Given this goal, we can rule out some assumptions on the basis of empiricism, logic or faith. Is it your contention that these assumptions and methods are all equal for truth-seeking?
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Old 10-17-2018, 09:07 PM   #54
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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I don't see how this kind of skepticism makes language meaningless. The relation between language and the world could be such that we are only able to theorize about the external world, but not able to prove or know anything about it. In such a scenario we could plausibly still make relative claims - p is more likely to be true than q - that make use of concepts like "truth," "evidence," and "false" without ever being able to justifiably claim to know that p is true or false.
Skepticism of this type can't just be sprinkled whenever we feel like it. It has to apply to everything, including the observer, his symbols, his logic and his thought experiments.

If things like Gettier problems and its derivations were genuinely problematic, they couldn't even even be posed in a meaningful manner. They are based on a presumption that the observers (the ones asking and answering the problem) knows the actual truth, which is what the problems challenge to begin with.

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Old 10-18-2018, 01:27 AM   #55
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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I agree that central to the scientific method and empiricism are a set of of revisable assumptions (or dogmas) about how to learn about the world. The Cartesian idea that we can derive all knowledge from a set of known axioms has never succeeded. Nonetheless, that doesn't mean that all such assumptions are of equal value. For instance, science as intellectual project exploring the natural worlds rests on a set of assumptions about the world. So do various religions and philosophies. We can prefer some assumptions because of their compatibility with these projects.

Arguing that naturalism or theism taken in isolation are more likely true on the basis of their differing foundational assumptions seems unlikely to succeed. But we can and do argue all the time about the value of different assumptions or methods for adopting new beliefs. Here we can distinguish between better and worse on the basis of goals - including the goal of seeking truth given certain assumptions about the world. Given this goal, we can rule out some assumptions on the basis of empiricism, logic or faith. Is it your contention that these assumptions and methods are all equal for truth-seeking?
I'm dubious about saying every to anything, but in terms of religion and science it's two different forms of truth seeking. Science deals with the way things are and theology, religion, philosophy etc attempt to seek the truth about the way we are. They're not equal, they're just different. How much value you ascribe to them is subjective.

To say one is truth and one isnt is silly. What is truth? Anyone who claims the scientific method has access to all truth is making a totally unsubstantiated and frankly ludicrous claim.
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Old 10-18-2018, 05:00 AM   #56
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Gettier_problem

From above link:

The main idea behind Gettier's examples is that the justification for the belief is flawed or incorrect, but the belief turns out to be true by sheer luck. Thus, a general scenario can be constructed as such:

Bob believes A is true because of B. Argument B is flawed, but A turns out to be true by a different argument C. Since A is true, Bob believes A is true, and Bob has justification B, all of the conditions (JTB) are satisfied. However, Bob had no knowledge of A


Also:

gettier/

Also, just because:

It wouldn't matter if I clubbed Gettier to death, crushing his entire cranium with a sledge hammer, or hacked his hideous head off with a blunt axe. The scumbag would still be dead, dead, dead. No matter the supposed inadequacy of the information and how transmitted. QED.
Well, it's pretty easy to show the errors of others when they have follow special rules that you don't. In this case poor Bob has to abide by special rules that don't apply to the observer (Bob has no access to the truth, the observer has access to the truth).

It sounds off to me to argue that access to truth can't be guaranteed, by implicitly arguing that you have access to the truth.

And that's pretty graphic man!

Last edited by tame_deuces; 10-18-2018 at 05:08 AM.
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Old 10-18-2018, 05:41 AM   #57
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Originally Posted by tame_deuces View Post
Skepticism of this type can't just be sprinkled whenever we feel like it. It has to apply to everything, including the observer, his symbols, his logic and his thought experiments.

If things like Gettier problems and its derivations were genuinely problematic, they couldn't even even be posed in a meaningful manner. They are based on a presumption that the observers (the ones asking and answering the problem) knows the actual truth, which is what the problems challenge to begin with.
If you were aware of the number of papers written and the shock to modern epistemology on the basis of Gettier I doubt you would dismiss them as being not genuinely problematic. They are, there is still no consensus on what knowledge actually is.

Speaker 1: Knowledge is impossible
Speaker 2: You don't know that
Speaker 1: Sure
Speaker 2: Gotcha?

The fact is we can communicate without knowing,we have spent years on this forum discussing stuff we don't or can't know, the hunter can still spear food regardless of whether he's a brain in a vat or a simulation in software.
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Old 10-18-2018, 07:18 AM   #58
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

Coincidence that "a brain in a vat" and "simulation" popped into my head also while contemplating all the cascading repercussions.

This is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius.
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Old 10-18-2018, 01:04 PM   #59
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Skepticism of this type can't just be sprinkled whenever we feel like it. It has to apply to everything, including the observer, his symbols, his logic and his thought experiments.
Yes it can? In some possible worlds where we have no way of gaining knowledge about the external world (eg evil demon, simulation, etc) it would still be possible to know conventional truths, eg tautologies. Thus, concepts like truth, proof, false, etc would still have useful meaning.

Quote:
If things like Gettier problems and its derivations were genuinely problematic, they couldn't even even be posed in a meaningful manner. They are based on a presumption that the observers (the ones asking and answering the problem) knows the actual truth, which is what the problems challenge to begin with.
Gettier problems are about our analysis of knowledge as a concept, not about skepticism per se. For instance, causal theories of knowledge (basically, you know that p if your belief that p is properly caused by the fact that p) were an attempt to make sense of the concept of knowledge consistent with the intuitions about knowledge highlighted by Gettier problems. But they don't really tell us what counts as "properly caused" beyond some vague procedural generalities (or black boxes like Plantinga's sensus divinitatis). While I do think there is value in conceptual analysis of important ideas like "knowledge," I don't think that the end of such an analysis gives us a substantive theory of what is required to know that p.
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Old 10-18-2018, 01:42 PM   #60
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Originally Posted by Zeno View Post
Gettier_problem

From above link:

The main idea behind Gettier's examples is that the justification for the belief is flawed or incorrect, but the belief turns out to be true by sheer luck. Thus, a general scenario can be constructed as such:

Bob believes A is true because of B. Argument B is flawed, but A turns out to be true by a different argument C. Since A is true, Bob believes A is true, and Bob has justification B, all of the conditions (JTB) are satisfied. However, Bob had no knowledge of A


Also:

gettier/

Also, just because:

It wouldn't matter if I clubbed Gettier to death, crushing his entire cranium with a sledge hammer, or hacked his hideous head off with a blunt axe. The scumbag would still be dead, dead, dead. No matter the supposed inadequacy of the information and how transmitted. QED.
I'll just remind people that except for rare exceptions they should not rely on wiki for philosophy. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy and the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy are both outstanding online resources written by subject matter experts that are regularly updated and comprehensive.

For instance, it is expressly not part of the Gettier examples that the argument or justification for the belief in question is flawed. Instead, it only assumes that we can be justified in believing that p even if we are not 100% certain that p. This is not a flaw, but a completely ordinary feature of justification. The challenge raised by Gettier is that the traditional way of understanding 'knowledge' claimed that it is necessary and sufficient to know that p that, p is true, and you are justified in believing that p. Gettier gave examples where p is true, and you are justified in believing that p (in a normal non-flawed manner), but you still don't know that p.

Last edited by Original Position; 10-18-2018 at 02:06 PM. Reason: accuracy
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Old 10-18-2018, 03:27 PM   #61
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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I'm dubious about saying every to anything, but in terms of religion and science it's two different forms of truth seeking. Science deals with the way things are and theology, religion, philosophy etc attempt to seek the truth about the way we are. They're not equal, they're just different. How much value you ascribe to them is subjective.
Science also seeks the truth about the way we are - whether in psychology, sociology, cognitive neuroscience, or so on. That is not what distinguishes the two. What I would say relevantly distinguishes the two is that scientific theories are tested against the world through experimentation and so have a clear and relatively unbiased procedure for acceptance and rejection. Alternatively, theological theories are derived from controversial, faith-based premises, the authority of tradition or revelation, or philosophical argumentation. There are advantages to the theological methodology compared to science, but mostly not truth-oriented advantages.

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To say one is truth and one isnt is silly. What is truth? Anyone who claims the scientific method has access to all truth is making a totally unsubstantiated and frankly ludicrous claim.
A claim is true if it corresponds in some relevant way to the facts, to the way the world actually is. I agree that the scientific method doesn't have access to all truths - eg many historical truths are irremediably lost. That being said, it does give us access to some truth about the world and how it works. Religion is useful for many things, but I don't see much in its epistemology that is useful for distinguishing between truth and false statements.
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:31 PM   #62
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

I’ll preface this post by first acknowledging the impact science has had in many ways that have contributed to raising the baseline quality of human experience.
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A claim is true if it corresponds in some relevant way to the facts, to the way the world actually is.
Respectfully, that is a modern, scientific perspective on truth, but it is not the highest version of truth. Defining truth is equivalent to defining what the highest aim of consciousness is/should be. The way Jesus defines truth in the New Testament is the highest form of truth.

It can be thought of as when we all become fully actualized, then there will be no confusion or debate about which version of truth is right, since it will be universally understood that the entire point of life is to become fully actualized. Right now, this understanding is unknown to most everyone so when Jesus says that he is the truth (he embodies the highest version of truth), we modern people think he is on an ego trip or something, and keep believing that the highest version of truth is fact.
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Old 10-18-2018, 06:52 PM   #63
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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I’ll preface this post by first acknowledging the impact science has had in many ways that have contributed to raising the baseline quality of human experience.

Respectfully, that is a modern, scientific perspective on truth, but it is not the highest version of truth. Defining truth is equivalent to defining what the highest aim of consciousness is/should be. The way Jesus defines truth in the New Testament is the highest form of truth.

It can be thought of as when we all become fully actualized, then there will be no confusion or debate about which version of truth is right, since it will be universally understood that the entire point of life is to become fully actualized. Right now, this understanding is unknown to most everyone so when Jesus says that he is the truth (he embodies the highest version of truth), we modern people think he is on an ego trip or something, and keep believing that the highest version of truth is fact.
First, with regards to the bolded, the correspondence theory of truth has its beginnings in the west in ancient Greek philosophers such as Aristotle and the Skeptics. It is also the view of Aquinas, who said “A judgment is said to be true when it conforms to the external reality." Thus, it is not true that this is just a modern, scientific perspective on truth, but rather it predates Jesus and was promulgated by influential premodern Christians.

On the one hand, you can just use "true" as a sign for a different concept than I am, such as self-actualization. That is, you can say that a claim is true if believing it helps you become self-actualized. For instance, if believing that you have free will helps you become more self-actualized, then it would be "true" that you have a free will. I don't have a problem with this - I'd just note that we use different definitions for truth and so should make sure to clearly signal which we are using when talking to each other.

However, many want to go beyond this and claim that beliefs that help us become self-actualized also have some kind of correlation to reality by virtue of their doing so. That is, the fact that eg believing that I have a free will makes me self-actualized means that in reality, separate from my beliefs about the world, I have a free will. This is not, however, really a claim about the nature of truth, but rather a claim about the nature of reality, that it is ordered in such a way that achieving human self-actualization is co-extensive with reality. Assume a provident God looking after everything, and maybe that assumption can be borne, but in a world where human minds evolved by a process of natural selection without such interference it seems unwarranted.
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Old 10-18-2018, 08:04 PM   #64
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

It's not enough to recognize that they are different; it's about which we should elevate over the other because it matters in how we act. If we don't consciously place the two in a hierarchical relationship, then as truth seekers we will automatically default to truth = facts, and the consequence of that - hyper rationalism.

How that plays out in life is when we get stuck and we either stay loyal to reason to guide us or at some point, we decide to balk at our reasoning since its guidance is no longer meaningful or fulfilling. That move, even if it's just the beginnings of doubt, is the temporary restructuring of the hierarchy of truth. That is really what is happening so we should at least be aware of it. This is one person's testimony that I have tried both ways to extremes and the default hierarchy of truth, truth as facts, has a ceiling to it compared to the alternative. In other words, we won't get stuck or stay stuck as long as we consciously aim beyond what is reasonable.
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Old 10-18-2018, 08:28 PM   #65
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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However, many want to go beyond this and claim that beliefs that help us become self-actualized also have some kind of correlation to reality by virtue of their doing so. That is, the fact that eg believing that I have a free will makes me self-actualized means that in reality, separate from my beliefs about the world, I have a free will.
I assume here you mean beliefs that we are consciously aware of holding. These types of beliefs don’t lead to self actualization. They don’t lead but are secondary effects. So I would say there is no such thing as beliefs that help us become self actualized. Whoever you are thinking of that made that claim is mistaken in their understanding of causality.
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Old 10-18-2018, 09:14 PM   #66
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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It's not enough to recognize that they are different; it's about which we should elevate over the other because it matters in how we act. If we don't consciously place the two in a hierarchical relationship, then as truth seekers we will automatically default to truth = facts, and the consequence of that - hyper rationalism.

How that plays out in life is when we get stuck and we either stay loyal to reason to guide us or at some point, we decide to balk at our reasoning since its guidance is no longer meaningful or fulfilling. That move, even if it's just the beginnings of doubt, is the temporary restructuring of the hierarchy of truth. That is really what is happening so we should at least be aware of it. This is one person's testimony that I have tried both ways to extremes and the default hierarchy of truth, truth as facts, has a ceiling to it compared to the alternative. In other words, we won't get stuck or stay stuck as long as we consciously aim beyond what is reasonable.
Nah, my preference is for beliefs that correspond to the world rather than self-actualizing illusions. Your argument that your definition is superior assumes a set of values different from my own - arguing that adopting your definition of truth will help you become more self-actualized. Okay. Self-actualization is not my only priority.

More importantly, I see no real reason to place these ideas in opposition. It seems to me that having accurate beliefs about yourself as a person is usually an important element of self-actualization. Attempts to downplay truth for Truth in these conversations generally seem to me due to the halo effect of science rather than any real conflict.
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Old 10-18-2018, 10:47 PM   #67
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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A claim is true if it corresponds in some relevant way to the facts, to the way the world actually is. I agree that the scientific method doesn't have access to all truths - eg many historical truths are irremediably lost. That being said, it does give us access to some truth about the world and how it works. Religion is useful for many things, but I don't see much in its epistemology that is useful for distinguishing between truth and false statements.
What about the claim: “God’s existence can only be known through personal revelation.” It’s a statement about the world and it’s either true or false. True if true; false if God’s existence can be known by other means or not known at all, or if God doesn’t exist.
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Old 10-18-2018, 10:55 PM   #68
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Nah, my preference is for beliefs that correspond to the world rather than self-actualizing illusions. Your argument that your definition is superior assumes a set of values different from my own - arguing that adopting your definition of truth will help you become more self-actualized. Okay. Self-actualization is not my only priority.

More importantly, I see no real reason to place these ideas in opposition. It seems to me that having accurate beliefs about yourself as a person is usually an important element of self-actualization. Attempts to downplay truth for Truth in these conversations generally seem to me due to the halo effect of science rather than any real conflict.
I am only placing them in opposition as far as which leads. I am not against the idea that facts are superior to delusions. I am against the idea that seeking facts about the world is better for the goal of long term, sustained progress (well being) for individuals and humanity as a whole. That method hits a ceiling.
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Old 10-19-2018, 03:48 AM   #69
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Nah, my preference is for beliefs that correspond to the world rather than self-actualizing illusions.
What you aren't getting is that implicit in your view of truth and what it takes to justify it necessarily eliminates any possibility beyond your own self imposed definition. If you set the standard for knowledge as 'empirically determined via the scientific method and supported by direct evidence' then if there are things that are true that are 'not empirically determined via the scientific method and supported by direct evidence' you will never know or have access to it.

It's sort of a cheap parlor trick to get out of admitting the possibility of truths existing outside your definition. And it's silly, like I said. Why would any free thinking, truth seeking human being ever do such a thing? The answer is they wouldn't. The attempt is made to deliberately eliminate a possibility that one finds threatening, or distasteful, or frightening, or whatever other motivation you can think of, especially with respect to theism.

Thomas Nagel is the only atheist I have ever heard admit this, and in that sense that makes him the only honest one. He doesnt believe in God because he doesnt want there to be one.

Rather than setting up a deliberately limiting system for determining truth and eliminating the possibility of transcendent or fundamentally subjective (but real and truthful) human experiences, why dont you just save your breath and tell the truth: you dont know if there is a God but you hope there isnt one.

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Old 10-19-2018, 03:16 PM   #70
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Originally Posted by Do0rDoNot View Post
What you aren't getting is that implicit in your view of truth and what it takes to justify it necessarily eliminates any possibility beyond your own self imposed definition. If you set the standard for knowledge as 'empirically determined via the scientific method and supported by direct evidence' then if there are things that are true that are 'not empirically determined via the scientific method and supported by direct evidence' you will never know or have access to it.
The problem here, which is the same problem that craig1120 has, is that you are not keeping distinct the conceptual analysis (or definition for you nominalists) of "knowledge" and the substantive theory of the evidentiary standards required to know something. Gettier issues and JTB analysis are all part of the conceptual analysis of "knowledge" but do not themselves imply any particular evidentiary (or non-evidentiary) standards of justification or warrant. It is fully compatible with believing that "true" means "corresponding to reality" to also believe that God's revelation justifies our believing that p is true (or that accepting p will help us self-actualize). Claiming that it also corresponds to reality is a separate issue.

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It's sort of a cheap parlor trick to get out of admitting the possibility of truths existing outside your definition. And it's silly, like I said. Why would any free thinking, truth seeking human being ever do such a thing? The answer is they wouldn't. The attempt is made to deliberately eliminate a possibility that one finds threatening, or distasteful, or frightening, or whatever other motivation you can think of, especially with respect to theism.
You just can't help yourself with your atheist stereotypes, can you? Here's what I actually said:

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I agree that the scientific method doesn't have access to all truths
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Originally Posted by Do0rDoNot View Post
Thomas Nagel is the only atheist I have ever heard admit this, and in that sense that makes him the only honest one. He doesnt believe in God because he doesnt want there to be one.

Rather than setting up a deliberately limiting system for determining truth and eliminating the possibility of transcendent or fundamentally subjective (but real and truthful) human experiences, why dont you just save your breath and tell the truth: you dont know if there is a God but you hope there isnt one.
The honest truth is that I wish the Christian God did exist. I would be very happy to find out that the universe is guided by an all-powerful benevolent being. It's true that I don't derive from this desire that the Christian God does exist. My wishing or desiring that p doesn't make p more likely to be true.

It is telling that you assume based on my lack of belief in God that it must be because I don't want there to be a God. This assumes that our desire for this belief to be true or false is what determines our belief, not the evidence or lack thereof. This fits in with the Christian idea of faith motivating belief and obedience to God, understood as being, as the author of Hebrews put it, the substance of things hoped for. I don't have faith that the Christian revelation is true, but that doesn't mean that it doesn't seem like a nice story that I wish was true.
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Old 10-19-2018, 04:31 PM   #71
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

For me, there is a distinction between beliefs and mindset. Beliefs are the default, rational, narrative that we operate within which can include God or not. The idea of truth that I am talking about is a mindset because it is in opposition to our default narrative (no matter what the narrative is). This mindset has to be held consciously by faith since we cannot believe it because it aims beyond the domain of our rationality.

In other words, rationality (our default belief system) always keeps us in the “known”. Always. Holding a mindset that goes beyond rationality allows for the possibility of going into the unknown. That’s what I mean by claiming that any definition of truth that promotes or is supportive of rationality has a ceiling.

I am simply attempting to bring this faith based mindset to awareness. It is not necessary to operate within this mindset for 99.9% of our lives, but that other 0.1% is everything. The more we can practice embodying this mindset during the 99.9%, we increase the chances that we will access this mindset during that 0.1%.
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Old 10-19-2018, 05:36 PM   #72
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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Originally Posted by craig1120 View Post
For me, there is a distinction between beliefs and mindset. Beliefs are the default, rational, narrative that we operate within which can include God or not. The idea of truth that I am talking about is a mindset because it is in opposition to our default narrative (no matter what the narrative is). This mindset has to be held consciously by faith since we cannot believe it because it aims beyond the domain of our rationality.

In other words, rationality (our default belief system) always keeps us in the “known”. Always. Holding a mindset that goes beyond rationality allows for the possibility of going into the unknown. That’s what I mean by claiming that any definition of truth that promotes or is supportive of rationality has a ceiling.

I am simply attempting to bring this faith based mindset to awareness. It is not necessary to operate within this mindset for 99.9% of our lives, but that other 0.1% is everything. The more we can practice embodying this mindset during the 99.9%, we increase the chances that we will access this mindset during that 0.1%.
This is a caricature. Rationality, goes into the unknown all the time. The fact that it explores the unknown differently than you do when using your different mindset doesn't mean it isn't happening. You seem to think that exploration requires assent (ie faith). Nope. In fact, the explorations of the unknown in science and philosophy are imo much more interesting and fruitful than those of the mystics and theologians who adopt a more faith-based method.

Anyway, its become clear that you aren't really disagreeing with what I've said about truth here, you are just putting forward a different concept. That's fine, there are a lot of concepts out there, I don't mind using the same letters and sounds to refer to both.
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Old 10-19-2018, 06:30 PM   #73
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

No caricature, just a lack of specificity on my part. The unknown I am referring to exists in chaos. I should have said the chaotic unknown.
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Old 10-19-2018, 08:14 PM   #74
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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The problem here, which is the same problem that craig1120 has, is that you are not keeping distinct the conceptual analysis (or definition for you nominalists) of "knowledge" and the substantive theory of the evidentiary standards required to know something.
That's not my problem, that's your problem. Admitting truth doesn't necessarily need evidence to exist and then claiming that standard again is just contradicting yourself. I don't require evidence to reasonably know that something is true. I personally believe humans have 'truth instincts' that apply to the realms of morality, theism, logic, art, beauty, and anything else transcendent (not to mention completely inaccessible via evidence and the scientific method). The 'divine spark' that people sometimes talk about is related to this. Humans are transcendent or transcending beings, because we were made that way. The fact we have these instincts for transcendence heavily suggests there exists a Transcendent. Throw determinism in the mix and it's even more suggestive. The only way out of this is to argue these qualities are somehow emergent properties of cognition and thus illusory. Sam Harris takes this line often.


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You just can't help yourself with your atheist stereotypes, can you?
Hey, until I see a couple of examples of atheists (here) who don't all think the same things and only use theoretical outliers as a way of getting around my accusations of herd mentality, it's not a stereotype. It's simply a local reality.




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The honest truth is that I wish the Christian God did exist. I would be very happy to find out that the universe is guided by an all-powerful benevolent being. It's true that I don't derive from this desire that the Christian God does exist. My wishing or desiring that p doesn't make p more likely to be true.
There's a lot in here that illustrates a facile understanding of the Christian God.

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It is telling that you assume based on my lack of belief in God that it must be because I don't want there to be a God. This assumes that our desire for this belief to be true or false is what determines our belief, not the evidence or lack thereof.
Hey man, I dunno your personal position on it, but you don't seem to understand the thing you 'wish' were true. What Thomas Nagel generally said about atheists 'hoping there is no God' caused a lot of atheists to shake their fist at what he said, which leads me to believe he hit the nail on the head. It also comports with what Christianity itself says about non-believers.

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This fits in with the Christian idea of faith motivating belief and obedience to God, understood as being, as the author of Hebrews put it, the substance of things hoped for. I don't have faith that the Christian revelation is true, but that doesn't mean that it doesn't seem like a nice story that I wish was true.
If what you're saying is true, you're a rare example of it.

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Old 10-19-2018, 11:47 PM   #75
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Re: Morality is only an opinion primarily based on emotion

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That's not my problem, that's your problem. Admitting truth doesn't necessarily need evidence to exist and then claiming that standard again is just contradicting yourself.
You are literally here doing exactly what I just accused you of, conflating the definition/conceptual analysis of "truth" with a substantive theory of what justifies us in believing that something is or is not true. My definition of truth doesn't imply anything about the standards of evidence for accepting a theory as true. It is consistent with many different standards of evidence, including intuitionism, faith, or evidential. I reject faith as a justification for believing p is true, but that is due to my substantive epistemic commitments, not my concept of truth.

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I don't require evidence to reasonably know that something is true. I personally believe humans have 'truth instincts' that apply to the realms of morality, theism, logic, art, beauty, and anything else transcendent (not to mention completely inaccessible via evidence and the scientific method). The 'divine spark' that people sometimes talk about is related to this. Humans are transcendent or transcending beings, because we were made that way. The fact we have these instincts for transcendence heavily suggests there exists a Transcendent. Throw determinism in the mix and it's even more suggestive. The only way out of this is to argue these qualities are somehow emergent properties of cognition and thus illusory. Sam Harris takes this line often.
I am more skeptical of the epistemic value of our intuitions taken in isolation. This is mostly due to the advances of modern science, mathematics, and logic, which demonstrated that our folk theories of these subjects, including ideas that used to be described as transcendent truths, were actually either false or optional. I also reject epistemic foundationalism, so I don't think beliefs are justified by self-evident axioms, but rather as part of an entire model of the world.

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Hey, until I see a couple of examples of atheists (here) who don't all think the same things and only use theoretical outliers as a way of getting around my accusations of herd mentality, it's not a stereotype. It's simply a local reality.
I'm an example. Well named is another. I'd guess most of the atheists on this forum would admit the possibility of truths unknowable by science. Science is a tool for investigating the natural world, but nowhere in its assumptions is it implied that it will end up with the final answers or be able to answer all questions. Since you think it is a local reality here on this forum, please name the regs that don't admit the possibility of truths not knowable by science. Of course, admitting this possibility doesn't imply that these truths are knowable by faith, or a truth instinct, or even knowable at all.
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There's a lot in here that illustrates a facile understanding of the Christian God.
Really? Like what?

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Hey man, I dunno your personal position on it, but you don't seem to understand the thing you 'wish' were true. What Thomas Nagel generally said about atheists 'hoping there is no God' caused a lot of atheists to shake their fist at what he said, which leads me to believe he hit the nail on the head. It also comports with what Christianity itself says about non-believers.
Then be a good Christian and explain it to me instead of condescending because of your greater knowledge.

Also:
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Thomas Nagel:
One should try to resist the intellectual effects of such a fear [of religion] (if not the fear itself), for it is just as irrational to be influenced in one's beliefs by the hope that God does not exist as by the hope that God does exist.
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If what you're saying is true, you're a rare example of it.
No I'm not. Go visit a UU or Quaker church, or many mainline Protestant churches, and you'll find a lot of more or less explicit atheists and agnostics that enjoy being part of a church community and so are willing to identify as a Christian, or at least attend church and just sort of ignore the god stuff. You tend to think of atheists as all spending their day posting memes on Reddit inbetween reading Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins. In fact, the New Atheists were only one faction of many among atheists, distinctive primarily because of their stridently anti-religious and anti-theistic views rather than their atheism.

Last edited by Original Position; 10-19-2018 at 11:56 PM. Reason: added link
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