On the Existence of Garage Dragons
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21-08-2015, 07:59 AM
On the Existence of Garage Dragons
I think what free is trying to say is that in a system where only 2 options exist that are contra to one another (such that they are mutually exclusive), only one can be true. So if someone disagrees with one of the statements (God does exist or God does not exist) they are in essence supporting the opposite position.

In order to substantiate the claim that a God exists, it would be necessary to show it's plausible, which no theist has ever done.

In order to substantiate the opposite/rejection of that claim, all one need do is show a god as an unnecessary claim. Which science does. So between the proposition that a god does exist or does not exist, it's the latter that is substantiated by reality.

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21-08-2015, 08:02 AM
On the Existence of Garage Dragons
As to whether or not there are only two positions, I guess that depends on your perspective. But I see the god claim as binary.

Claim: God exists =1
God does not exist = 0

Evidence for claim = 0
Necessity of claim in order to explain the universe = 0
Claim rejected.

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21-08-2015, 08:08 AM
On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 07:30 AM)cjlr Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 12:56 AM)Stevil Wrote:  Honestly Free, go take a beginners course in logic, you will learn a lot.

A v B = True

For the above claim to be True only one option needs to be true.

A could be "The sky is green" which is clearly incorrect however
A v B can still be true if B is true

If B is "The sky is blue" then the full claim is correct
"The sky is green" or "The sky is blue" resolves to True because as most of us know the sky is actually blue.

If you have two options which are all encompasing e.g. number marbles in a jar can only be Odd or Even then
A v B = True when A = odd and B = even.
We could even throw something completely wrong in there and the answer is still true. C = Cows produce wine.
A v B v C = True
the extra premise does not invalidate the truth of the claim because only one item needs to be true. A and B are all encompassing so at least on of these has to be true so the answer will be true. We don't know if A is true and we don't know if B is true but we know that A v B = true.

This is basic, basic, basic logic. You would probably learn it on the first day of any introductory logic course. Probably in the first chapter of "Logic for Dummies".

We know that "God's existence is possible" or "god's existence is impossible" is all encompassing even though we don't know which one of the two is correct.
So we can confidently say A v B = True without knowing if A is correct or if B is correct.


Basic, basic, basic logic. A 10 year old could grasp it. Honestly any ten year old without learning deficiencies.

Sure, but binary logic is only a narrow subset of all constructed logical formalisms.
(delightfully pedantic example: the sky isn't blue - rather, out of all the wavelengths visible to the human eye, it is blue light that is scattered most heavily if illuminated by a G-type star at about 1 AU and at a relatively direct angle; even if we just say it "is" blue, it still doesn't appear so most of the time - there's an awful lot of depth baked into the deceptively simple statement that "the sky is blue")

Of course, what Free doesn't quite understand about truth claims and exclusive propositions is another matter...

I see what you're saying with this but I think the "sky is blue" claim is different than a god claim.

It's pretty easy for me see that color is a subjective breakdown of the EM spectrum, so any question regarding color is unlikely to be binary (different animals see color differently, as do different humans).

But I think an existence/occurrence claim is binary. Did Mt. Pinatubo erupt in the 1990's? It's not an ambiguous question. It's yes or no in this case.

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21-08-2015, 08:22 AM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 08:08 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 07:30 AM)cjlr Wrote:  Sure, but binary logic is only a narrow subset of all constructed logical formalisms.
(delightfully pedantic example: the sky isn't blue - rather, out of all the wavelengths visible to the human eye, it is blue light that is scattered most heavily if illuminated by a G-type star at about 1 AU and at a relatively direct angle; even if we just say it "is" blue, it still doesn't appear so most of the time - there's an awful lot of depth baked into the deceptively simple statement that "the sky is blue")

Of course, what Free doesn't quite understand about truth claims and exclusive propositions is another matter...

I see what you're saying with this but I think the "sky is blue" claim is different than a god claim.

It's pretty easy for me see that color is a subjective breakdown of the EM spectrum, so any question regarding color is unlikely to be binary (different animals see color differently, as do different humans).

But I think an existence/occurrence claim is binary. Did Mt. Pinatubo erupt in the 1990's? It's not an ambiguous question. It's yes or no in this case.

"Does God exist?" is actually more like the sky color question than the Mt. Pinatubo question. Because you can't answer it until you have a coherent definition of "God". Good luck with that.
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21-08-2015, 08:24 AM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 08:08 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 07:30 AM)cjlr Wrote:  Sure, but binary logic is only a narrow subset of all constructed logical formalisms.
(delightfully pedantic example: the sky isn't blue - rather, out of all the wavelengths visible to the human eye, it is blue light that is scattered most heavily if illuminated by a G-type star at about 1 AU and at a relatively direct angle; even if we just say it "is" blue, it still doesn't appear so most of the time - there's an awful lot of depth baked into the deceptively simple statement that "the sky is blue")

Of course, what Free doesn't quite understand about truth claims and exclusive propositions is another matter...

I see what you're saying with this but I think the "sky is blue" claim is different than a god claim.

I agree they're different as well, but natural English doesn't really make the distinction.

(21-08-2015 08:08 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  It's pretty easy for me see that color is a subjective breakdown of the EM spectrum, so any question regarding color is unlikely to be binary (different animals see color differently, as do different humans).

That isn't quite how I meant it; the proposition, "there is far more scattering of 450nm photons than of 650nm photons in the Earth's atmosphere on a sunny day" is far closer to binary, it's just that to get there requires a great deal of elaboration.
(or, to quote a certain great thinker, "it depends on what the meaning of 'is' is")

(21-08-2015 08:08 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  But I think an existence/occurrence claim is binary. Did Mt. Pinatubo erupt in the 1990's? It's not an ambiguous question. It's yes or no in this case.

Sure, but that's because all of the components in the proposition (implicit and explicit) are well defined and unambiguous. Binary exclusivity is a consequence of how our propositions are constructed.

(there are also certain tedious people who are incredibly insistent that no knowledge is perfect and absolute, but even then they don't generally do so for these kinds of statements - only where it suits them!)

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21-08-2015, 08:25 AM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 07:30 AM)cjlr Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 12:56 AM)Stevil Wrote:  Honestly Free, go take a beginners course in logic, you will learn a lot.

A v B = True

For the above claim to be True only one option needs to be true.

A could be "The sky is green" which is clearly incorrect however
A v B can still be true if B is true

If B is "The sky is blue" then the full claim is correct
"The sky is green" or "The sky is blue" resolves to True because as most of us know the sky is actually blue.

If you have two options which are all encompasing e.g. number marbles in a jar can only be Odd or Even then
A v B = True when A = odd and B = even.
We could even throw something completely wrong in there and the answer is still true. C = Cows produce wine.
A v B v C = True
the extra premise does not invalidate the truth of the claim because only one item needs to be true. A and B are all encompassing so at least on of these has to be true so the answer will be true. We don't know if A is true and we don't know if B is true but we know that A v B = true.

This is basic, basic, basic logic. You would probably learn it on the first day of any introductory logic course. Probably in the first chapter of "Logic for Dummies".

We know that "God's existence is possible" or "god's existence is impossible" is all encompassing even though we don't know which one of the two is correct.
So we can confidently say A v B = True without knowing if A is correct or if B is correct.


Basic, basic, basic logic. A 10 year old could grasp it. Honestly any ten year old without learning deficiencies.

Sure, but binary logic is only a narrow subset of all constructed logical formalisms.
(delightfully pedantic example: the sky isn't blue - rather, out of all the wavelengths visible to the human eye, it is blue light that is scattered most heavily if illuminated by a G-type star at about 1 AU and at a relatively direct angle; even if we just say it "is" blue, it still doesn't appear so most of the time - there's an awful lot of depth baked into the deceptively simple statement that "the sky is blue")

Of course, what Free doesn't quite understand about truth claims and exclusive propositions is another matter...

Not much understanding is required.

He asserts two possibilities.

I am asking him to qualify them as being possible.

That's it in a nutshell.

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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21-08-2015, 08:28 AM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 08:25 AM)Free Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 07:30 AM)cjlr Wrote:  Sure, but binary logic is only a narrow subset of all constructed logical formalisms.
(delightfully pedantic example: the sky isn't blue - rather, out of all the wavelengths visible to the human eye, it is blue light that is scattered most heavily if illuminated by a G-type star at about 1 AU and at a relatively direct angle; even if we just say it "is" blue, it still doesn't appear so most of the time - there's an awful lot of depth baked into the deceptively simple statement that "the sky is blue")

Of course, what Free doesn't quite understand about truth claims and exclusive propositions is another matter...

Not much understanding is required.

He asserts two possibilities.

I am asking him to qualify them as being possible.

That's it in a nutshell.

Existence or non-existence is necessarily a binary proposition due to the meaning of "exist". It makes entirely no difference what the subject of the claim is - it either exists or it does not. That's how the word works.

I remain unsure of just what your objection is.

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21-08-2015, 08:35 AM (This post was last modified: 21-08-2015 08:39 AM by Free.)
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 08:28 AM)cjlr Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 08:25 AM)Free Wrote:  Not much understanding is required.

He asserts two possibilities.

I am asking him to qualify them as being possible.

That's it in a nutshell.

Existence or non-existence is necessarily a binary proposition due to the meaning of "exist". It makes entirely no difference what the subject of the claim is - it either exists or it does not. That's how the word works.

I remain unsure of just what your objection is.

My objection is this:

He's making a positive claim that two possibilities exist:

1. God exists.
2. God does not exist.

I am asking him to qualify one of those options as being possible, in particular, option 1.

In other words, what evidence can he supply that elevates option 1 from being a baseless assertion to being a hypothesis.

Why is Option 1 a possibility?

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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21-08-2015, 08:42 AM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 08:35 AM)Free Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 08:28 AM)cjlr Wrote:  Existence or non-existence is necessarily a binary proposition due to the meaning of "exist". It makes entirely no difference what the subject of the claim is - it either exists or it does not. That's how the word works.

I remain unsure of just what your objection is.

My objection is this:

He's making a positive claim that two possibilities exist:

1. God exists.
2. God does not exist.

I am asking him to qualify one of those options as being possible, in particular, option 1.

In other words, what evidence can he supply that elevates option 1 from being a baseless assertion to being a hypothesis.

Why is Option 1 a possibility?

It is a necessary possibility contingent on the words used. Words have meanings.

Implicit in the construction of the proposition "X does not exist" is the contrary: "X does exist". This is, as stevil said, basic logic, and what perhaps he did not make clear enough is that it is content agnostic.

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21-08-2015, 08:54 AM
RE: On the Existence of Garage Dragons
(21-08-2015 08:42 AM)cjlr Wrote:  
(21-08-2015 08:35 AM)Free Wrote:  My objection is this:

He's making a positive claim that two possibilities exist:

1. God exists.
2. God does not exist.

I am asking him to qualify one of those options as being possible, in particular, option 1.

In other words, what evidence can he supply that elevates option 1 from being a baseless assertion to being a hypothesis.

Why is Option 1 a possibility?

It is a necessary possibility contingent on the words used. Words have meanings.

Sure they have meaning, but it is still a positive claim regardless of their necessity. He is still claiming the existence of God as being a possibility.

Quote:Implicit in the construction of the proposition "X does not exist" is the contrary: "X does exist". This is, as stevil said, basic logic, and what perhaps he did not make clear enough is that it is content agnostic.

Yes, it is basic logic. Yes it is implicit.

Yet still, it is a positive claim. The moment he said that there are two possibilities, he made the positive claim, regardless of what is implicit or logical. He acknowledges those possibilities. The logic is meaningless to my point.

Yes, it is necessary for him to posit both in the construction of the proposition.

If he would have said something to the effect of, "Being agnostic, and although I hold no beliefs either way, it would appear that most people view the situation in such that two possibilities exist."

Then I may not have had a problem. But he made the claim from himself, and not from a general consensus.

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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