TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
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25-01-2015, 06:51 PM
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
(25-01-2015 06:16 PM)Free Wrote:  
(25-01-2015 05:50 PM)cjlr Wrote:  So the whole line of argument here amounts to "your assertions are wrong because my assertions".

I agree that it's interesting, but it's still no more than a thought experiment.

It totally seems reasonable and beautifully GORGEOUS logically. It so completely works with my world view and how I think. I understood it immediately because it is something that I put into practice daily. I just never knew there was anything out there that could properly articulate it. I know I never could find the right words to describe what and why things go through my mind the way they do.

I suspect you see it the same way I do.

Hardly.

If there's one thing I have learned from an advanced study of modern physics, it is that intuition is useless. What we feel to be true is irrelevant. What satisfies pre-existing human constructs is irrelevant. And while it is inevitable that we must make some assumptions in order to proceed in any meaningful way... It is premature to declare human logic to be objectively axiomatic. That simply doesn't follow.

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25-01-2015, 07:04 PM
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
(25-01-2015 06:51 PM)cjlr Wrote:  
(25-01-2015 06:16 PM)Free Wrote:  It totally seems reasonable and beautifully GORGEOUS logically. It so completely works with my world view and how I think. I understood it immediately because it is something that I put into practice daily. I just never knew there was anything out there that could properly articulate it. I know I never could find the right words to describe what and why things go through my mind the way they do.

I suspect you see it the same way I do.

Hardly.

If there's one thing I have learned from an advanced study of modern physics, it is that intuition is useless. What we feel to be true is irrelevant. What satisfies pre-existing human constructs is irrelevant. And while it is inevitable that we must make some assumptions in order to proceed in any meaningful way... It is premature to declare human logic to be objectively axiomatic. That simply doesn't follow.

But this is much simpler than physics, and in this field intuition really isn't involved. It's a simple matter of how perceptions and concepts need to conform to known reality.

Sure you can argue as to the nature of reality, but it won't change the fact that the identified objects of existence are what they are, and can never be whatever we consciously perceive them to be. Our perceptions can only ever approximate the truth in regards to the objects of existence, for out of 100 people staring at a wall, 72 will say the wall is yellow, and the rest might say it is gold.

But in reality, none of them can be certain what color the wall actually is.

Undecided

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25-01-2015, 07:06 PM
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
(25-01-2015 07:04 PM)Free Wrote:  
(25-01-2015 06:51 PM)cjlr Wrote:  Hardly.

If there's one thing I have learned from an advanced study of modern physics, it is that intuition is useless. What we feel to be true is irrelevant. What satisfies pre-existing human constructs is irrelevant. And while it is inevitable that we must make some assumptions in order to proceed in any meaningful way... It is premature to declare human logic to be objectively axiomatic. That simply doesn't follow.

But this is much simpler than physics, and in this field intuition really isn't involved. It's a simple matter of how perceptions and concepts need to conform to known reality.

Sure you can argue as to the nature of reality, but it won't change the fact that the identified objects of existence are what they are, and can never be whatever we consciously perceive them to be. Our perceptions can only ever approximate the truth in regards to the objects of existence, for out of 100 people staring at a wall, 72 will say the wall is yellow, and the rest might say it is gold.

But in reality, none of them can be certain what color the wall actually is.

Undecided

If one is invoking the concept of metaphysics, one is taking recourse in intuition. What is metaphysics, beyond that which cannot be substantiated or justified with mere physics?

If no one really knows anything, there's no particular reason to assume you do, either - no matter how many other people you think might agree with you.

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25-01-2015, 07:23 PM (This post was last modified: 25-01-2015 08:20 PM by Free.)
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
(25-01-2015 07:06 PM)cjlr Wrote:  
(25-01-2015 07:04 PM)Free Wrote:  But this is much simpler than physics, and in this field intuition really isn't involved. It's a simple matter of how perceptions and concepts need to conform to known reality.

Sure you can argue as to the nature of reality, but it won't change the fact that the identified objects of existence are what they are, and can never be whatever we consciously perceive them to be. Our perceptions can only ever approximate the truth in regards to the objects of existence, for out of 100 people staring at a wall, 72 will say the wall is yellow, and the rest might say it is gold.

But in reality, none of them can be certain what color the wall actually is.

Undecided

If one is invoking the concept of metaphysics, one is taking recourse in intuition. What is metaphysics, beyond that which cannot be substantiated or justified with mere physics?

If no one really knows anything, there's no particular reason to assume you do, either - no matter how many other people you think might agree with you.

Well what I mean is, because perceptions of the objects of existence are merely interpretations of those objects, then it makes me wonder if intuition is involved at all with the objects of existence. Or, does intuition only concern itself with the interpretation of those objects?

Since I lean more towards intuition only concerning itself with the interpretation, then intuition is not at all involved with the objects i.e.; the actual physics. Perhaps this could be the very reason why intuition sucks so much in the field of physics.

Intuition isn't actually interacting with the objects of existence. If this is true, then our perceptions of reality may in fact be limited to our physical capabilities insomuch that the ability to grasp- or even conceive- some concepts of reality may be completely outside our range of abilities.

In fact, they could be so outside our range as to be completely undetectable. Therefore, intuition says, "WTF?"

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25-01-2015, 07:59 PM
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
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26-01-2015, 06:55 AM
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
Hi Stevil,

You wrote: What do you mean by consciousness?

Edit: It would be also interesting to me to know what your definition of existence or reality is.
And what you mean when you state "objects of consciousness do not conform to the subject of consciousness" because, of course, a conscious human can decide to walk from one place to another taking their shoes with them. Shoes being an object of consciousness in that this human recognizes these shoes. The consciousness of the human has in this instance made the shoes conform by manipulating the human's body and as such causing the human's body to move the shoes
.

It is crucial when thinking about these issues to think in terms of essentials. We are talking about the very first concepts at the very base of knowledge. If knowledge were a building then these concepts are not the foundation but the actual bedrock that supports the foundation. They are implicit in all knowledge and all cognition. As soon as you say "it is" the axioms and the POE are implicit.

Axiomatic concepts can not be defined in terms of antecedent concepts. These are the first level of knowledge and there are no concepts antecedent to them. How can there be any concepts before "consciousness" since concepts are a product of consciousness. We would have to grasp that we are conscious before we set about forming any other higher level concepts involving consciousness. This axiom is implicit in all concepts. The axiom of consciousness is simply a formal recognition of what is already known implicitly. It is the faculty of perceiving that which exists. If you start thinking in terms of origins, causes or scientific definitions they you will get confused. None of us are taught to think in terms of essentials so it is hard.

So axioms are defined ostensively, by pointing to the referents of the concept. Consciousness is directly observable through introspection but not as a primary object. Consciousness is not an entity, it is an action or attribute of entities. As an action it can't be observed until it is acting and the action of consciousness is perceiving. It can be observed only as a secondary object. I'm observing my consciousness right now as I think about what to type. Just as I can't see fishing unless someone is fishing, a consciousness cannot be conscious of itself until it is conscious of something external to itself, an object. If you think about it you'll see this is true.

Existence is the same. Defined ostensively by pointing to everything that exists and saying, this. It is the widest of all concepts including as its referents literally everything that exists.

So existence is that which exists.

Consciousness means the faculty that perceives that which exists.

Identity means that every thing is something, an object. Every thing has a specific set of attributes. A is A.

The primacy of existence means that everything exists independent of conscious activity, anyone's. A is A whether you like it or not.

In your example of the shoes, the consciousness can do nothing without a brain, body and nerves to carry out the conscious intent of carrying the shoes. So you see that the primacy of existence is upheld. Consciousness is dependent on existence in four ways. It needs a means (sense organs and a brain), it needs objects to perceive. It needs content to work on which it must get from perceiving objects, and it needs a purpose. Its purpose is to help the organism possessing it to deal with reality and to survive.

The beauty of the argument from primacy is that the axioms are invulnerable to attack. As soon as an opponent attacks the primacy of existence principle they have conceded the argument. Here's why.

In his book Objectivism: the Philosophy of Ayn Rand, Leonard Piekoff presented an elegant proof that these concepts are axiomatic and must be used by an opponent even to attack them. I believe it is on page 40 of the book. I'll reproduce it here from memory since I don't have it at hand right now.

It is is the form of a dialog and begins with A, the defender of axioms, purporting to reject the concept of "disagreement".

A: Your rejection of the self evident is invalid. There is no such thing as disagreement. People agree about everything.

B: Of course they don't. People disagree about all kinds of things, you know that.

A: How can they? After all nothing exists. There's nothing to disagree about.

B: That's absurd. All kinds of things exist, you know that.

A: There's one. You must accept the concept "existence" to utter the word disagreement. But to continue, I say your objection is still invalid. After all people are not conscious and are incapable of holding ideas.

B: That's absurd. People are conscious beings, you know that.

A: That's two. You must accept the axiom of "consciousness" in order to utter the word disagreement. But why should the fact that two people disagree on an idea suggest that there is a problem. Why can't two people who disagree about an idea both be objectively right.

B: They can't both be right. A contradiction can't exist in reality. After all A is A.

A: That's three. You must accept the axiom of identity in order to utter the word disagreement.

Here I will add in for the primacy of existence which wasn't included in the original dialogue because the book hadn't discussed it yet.

A: Still if I don't want your objection to be true it won't be.

B: That's absurd. After all reality doesn't bend itself to your wishes.

The axioms must be accepted and used in order to attempt to reject them or refute them. It literally can't be done. The only other option for the theist is to propose that a existence can have primacy and not have primacy at the same time and in the same respect. They're toast.

Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture, an intransigent mind and a step that travels unlimited roads. - Ayn Rand.

Don't sacrifice for me, live for yourself! - Me

The only alternative to Objectivism is some form of Subjectivism. - Dawson Bethrick
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26-01-2015, 12:49 PM
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
(26-01-2015 06:55 AM)true scotsman Wrote:  Consciousness is directly observable through introspection but not as a primary object. Consciousness is not an entity, it is an action or attribute of entities. As an action it can't be observed until it is acting and the action of consciousness is perceiving. It can be observed only as a secondary object.
Kind of agree. I wouldn't classify consciousness as an object but merely as an abstract concept.
In our experience we have only seen the concept of consciousness fulfilled by living organisms, the working processes of their brains exhibit attributes consistent with the definition of consciousness.

However it does not make sense to assume that consciousness cannot come about in other forms and to assume that other forms of consciousness cannot have other attributes.
For example, we are in an age that most people can conceive that one day artificial intelligence might come about with machines becoming conscious. Sure this also requires an underlying physical structure and hence in this instance requires physical existence prior to artificial consciousness.

(26-01-2015 06:55 AM)true scotsman Wrote:  a consciousness cannot be conscious of itself until it is conscious of something external to itself, an object. If you think about it you'll see this is true.
I'm not sure if this is true. Something that is self aware could perceive itself.

(26-01-2015 06:55 AM)true scotsman Wrote:  Existence is the same. Defined ostensively by pointing to everything that exists and saying, this. It is the widest of all concepts including as its referents literally everything that exists.
The problem is that science can only assess natural existence. Science is not an attempt to assess everything, only that which can be measured and observed. Science is a way of discovering knowledge about the material world.
This is not to say that there is anything more than the material world, just that science cannot tell us anything about the non material world (e.g. supernatural).
Even within the confines of the natural world, most scientist consider that we only know of a small fraction of what makes up the natural world. Dark matter and Dark energy outnumbers all the matter and energy that we know about.

So, we don't know of all the instances of consciousness and we don't know the majority of natural existence, we don't know anything about "supernatural" existence, and yet your Primacy of Existence makes claims out of necessity as if all is known.

(26-01-2015 06:55 AM)true scotsman Wrote:  In your example of the shoes, the consciousness can do nothing without a brain, body and nerves to carry out the conscious intent of carrying the shoes. So you see that the primacy of existence is upheld. Consciousness is dependent on existence in four ways. It needs a means (sense organs and a brain), it needs objects to perceive. It needs content to work on which it must get from perceiving objects, and it needs a purpose. Its purpose is to help the organism possessing it to deal with reality and to survive.
At what point in the god definition does it state that gods must be made of nothing and must be able to manipulate natural existence with thought alone?

The biggest flaw in your argument is that you assume there are known mechanisms by which gods act (i.e. thought/consciousness).

The god concept has not been well defined, certainly not defined enough in order to make a critique on it's viability.
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26-01-2015, 01:00 PM
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
(26-01-2015 06:55 AM)true scotsman Wrote:  Axiomatic concepts can not be defined in terms of antecedent concepts.

I was wondering, if God is defined as creator, what is the actual objection?

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26-01-2015, 03:46 PM (This post was last modified: 27-01-2015 09:42 AM by ClydeLee.)
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
(23-01-2015 10:00 PM)true scotsman Wrote:  
(23-01-2015 09:47 PM)ClydeLee Wrote:  It's pretty solid stuff. When it comes to TAG though I've always found the most obvious truthful contrast to many of their types of arguments is saying you don't know. They seem to want to work in absolute claims about our claims but with responses of openly not knowing, you show they don't have any leg to stand upon in some claim that your idea is based on faultiness w/o their god.

I'm not exactly sure how one concludes this, "It is validated by sense perception and does not need to be proved." In the realm of how we can tell by perception I don't think one person is enough to make the claim of something on their own to need to not prove it.

ClydeLee,

An axiomatic concept is outside the realm of proof. It is implicit in the concept of "proof". That is the real test of whether a concept is axiomatic. Take the concept "existence". If nothing exists there is nothing to prove and no one to prove it to. That's what is meant by implicit in any proof.

The question I had here wasn't how a concept of axiomatic nature is known as implicit... it's how does the idea of perception create something being known axiomatically? To me that is far from an automatic assumption that can be simply accepted without proof. It sounds like to me it is giving trust to our perception to be reliable and not thinking we could be entirely deluded in what we perceive at all costs. It's not something I would accept with just perception, to think that our perception is accurate and not eternally in a state of delusion.

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27-01-2015, 08:02 AM
RE: TAG vs. the Argument From Primacy
Hey everyone,

I apologize for not being around to respond. I do appreciate your comments. I've been sick as a dog for the last two days. I'll respond to everyone as I have time.

Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture, an intransigent mind and a step that travels unlimited roads. - Ayn Rand.

Don't sacrifice for me, live for yourself! - Me

The only alternative to Objectivism is some form of Subjectivism. - Dawson Bethrick
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