Saturday, February 14, 2009

TAG Peanut Gallery COMMENT HERE

All people interested in the TAG debate other than Sye and yours truly should post in the commentary for this thread. Sye and I may wish to go into this thread and reply, but if either of us do so, what we post is fair game to quote and criticize in the main thread :)

449 comments:

  1. I'll be observing this debate with interest. I fetched up against Sye at one point, and though I still feel that his arguments are misleading and occasionally dishonest, I truly do admire their structure. They can be very convincing.

    PS: Hi Sye!

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  2. *passes around popcorn* I agree, the arguments on that website were misleading and intellectually dishonest. I'd love to see how this plays out.

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  3. When does the show start?
    Hi Sye!

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  4. I'm confused here, according to me Darrin has already won.

    By Sye engaging in a debate it is defended by retortion that he agrees Darrin uses logic. Else why do it?

    Therefore Sye cant ask questions on accounting for logic because there is no disagreement that Darrin has it.

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  5. UPDATES: Sye's father is currently having medical trouble, which will preclude his starting this debate for a few days.

    Also, my apparently cheap screen on my new laptop spiderwebbed after closing it. I have it hooked up to an old, old monitor, and will try to keep up, but Amazon should have my new laptop by Wednesday or Thursday. In any rate, I will participate here as often as possible, and look forward to the debate.

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  6. Hey, I was listening to the last "the narrow mind" which I believe you called into a few days ago, and you said something about there was an atheist that called in a few shows back, you wish you knew who it was. If you meant mark in ohio from the 12/13/08 episode, that's yours truly. I don't know how to send someone a direct message on here, but you can talk to my at myspace.com/heresyisgood if you like, or by email, but I won't post my email online because I would get copious amounts of spam.

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  7. From Sye's opening statement:

    If there is agreement there, please tell us how universal, abstract, invariant laws make sense according to your worldview, and on what basis you proceed with the assumption that they WILL hold.

    If the laws of logic or mathematics failed to 'hold', what kind of effect does Sye think would this have on our universe?

    For example, based on the law of non contradiction, finite beings cannot also be infinite. If this law failed to hold sometime in the future, could the definitions of infinite or finite change so they would no longer be mutually exclusive? Would there no longer be such a thing as mutual exclusivity? Or would things that were once non-mutually exclusive suddenly become a contradiction, and vice versa?

    Regarding mathematics, if before the failure 2x500=1,000, could 2x500 suddenly equal 2,000 afterwards? And If I had 2x500 pennies in my piggy bank before the failure, would 1,000 more pennies magically appear, since 2x500 now equals 2,000?

    In other words, it's unclear as to what Sye would consider the consequences of a 'failure' of logic or mathematics, which seems to be relevant as to God's necessity for it to 'hold.'

    I also proceed with the expectation that the laws of logic will continue to hold based on God's requirements of us, and His promises to us.

    I'd ask, on what basis do you proceed with the assumption that God's promises to us WILL hold? Induction or divine revelation? If divine revelation, on what basis do you presume that what you perceive as divine revelation is actually communication from God, instead of a delusion or even brain damage? induction?

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  8. Sye's made his first post so here's my comments:

    But I suppose right off the bat, we should see if there is agreement that the laws of logic, are in fact, universal, abstract, and invariant, and if you accept that you proceed with the assumption that they WILL hold.

    Laws of logic are descriptions, observations of reality. Abstract concepts, they exist in the minds of competent persons.
    Take any logic laws.
    ¬T≡F and T=T (for example)
    (T=true and F=False)
    They are concepts in the mind of people. By observing reality long enough, you can understand these concepts.

    If there is agreement there, please tell us how universal, abstract, invariant laws make sense according to your worldview, and on what basis you proceed with the assumption that they WILL hold.
    Question: How do people know these "laws" are universal and invariant?

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  9. (I have a feeling that Sye wrapped up all his other threads to come here because he thought he might finally win someone over. Darren stated on the radio that the only thing that deconverted him from Christianity was Calvinism so a lot of ground is already won over for Sye. For Sye this would be better than conversing with people who have no belief in gods or haven't already been in Christianity.)

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  10. has sye checked these "universal, abstract invariant laws" in every corner of the universe and at all possible scales?

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  11. No, CB. As they're merely a reflection of the nature of his deity, he has faith that they're absolute (re. it's one of his presuppositions).

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  12. Well, here's my personal answers. I don't want to distract the debaters, so I'll keep them concise.

    Sye wrote:
    But I suppose right off the bat, we should see if there is agreement that the laws of logic, are in fact, universal,
    No. The phenomena they represent, however, is.

    Sye continued:
    abstract
    Yes. The phenomena they represent, however, is not.

    Sye added:
    , and invariant,
    No. The phenomena they represent, however, is.

    Sye finished
    and if you accept that you proceed with the assumption that they WILL hold.
    Yes, I do.

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  13. Hi Darrin, it's here as promised :)

    ..........................................

    All cognitive species receive information via the senses/nervous system; this information is stored as data in the brain. The brain has the capacity to recall this information and use it when making decisions regarding actions. Varying external stimuli affect the nervous receptors in different ways – creating a unique sort of encrypted “code” to be sent to the brain via the nervous system. The brain then decrypts the “code” and compartmentalizes the received information.

    I would call this sort of received information “hard” or “first-hand” information, as it has been experienced personally. The animal comes into contact with a subject – and the brain stores the various received properties of that subject, along with the variables of the circumstance under which the subject was encountered. As the brain will have a repository of information to draw from (very limited in the case of a newborn, extensive in the case of an adult), it will then assess the data that the nervous system is delivering - “Is this subject moving? Does it move like the predators that I have experienced or the prey that I have experienced?” etc - and make a decision about how to act based on information garnered via previous experiences – “The subject is moving, it moves like the predators I have encountered. Previous experience has taught me that the best course of action would be to run up that tree until the subject has gone.”.

    Now, the subject in the above example may or may not have been a predator, but our animal survived due to its actions. If the animal has young, and they were a party to this demonstration – and followed their mother up the tree then they too survived. Here is where we can observe “soft” or “second-hand” information. The young animal has observed a specific behaviour that resulted in survival, and will store this knowledge “running up the tree to avoid the subject resulted in survival” in its brain (as truth), and will consider this information the next time it encounters the same subject on its own.

    An animal that is driven to survive will not hang around to determine whether or not a subject that behaves like the predators that is has observed first hand is actually a predator. Therefore it can apply a logic that ensures its survival e.g.:

    P1) It has been personally demonstrated to me that bears are predators.
    P2) Bears have (certain set of characteristics)
    Conclusion) Anything displaying (certain set of characteristics) must be a predator akin to a bear.

    While the conclusion drawn by the animal is fallacious (if some drongs are crongs, and some crongs are prongs, does it follow that that some drongs must be prongs? The answer of course, is no), it has utilized the process of logic to its advantage – resulting in a truth relative to the animal, but not to us as observers.

    To summarize the accumulation of knowledge, application of logic and personal understanding of truth:

    The neural impulses generated by an action can be “registered” by more cognitive species. This “registering” system generates knowledge of the results of every action caused along with the effects of said action. If we label “cause” (x) and effect (y) then the individual can say that they possess the knowledge to verify that (x) leads to (y). They can know that it is certainly true that (x) leads to (y).

    However an individual has to be able to communicate or demonstrate that (x) leads to (y) in order for their truth to transcend beyond their own knowledge and into the knowledge of others. Once the individual has demonstrated that (x) leads to (y) to another, the process begins again:

    Registered neural impulses –> generate knowledge of cause and effect –> the individual can then say that they possess the knowledge to verify that (x) leads to (y) -> the individual can know that it is certainly true that (x) leads to (y).



    Humans accumulate knowledge in the same manner, with the demonstration process enhanced greatly with the advent of communication. But we too can utilize the logical process in such a manner as to derive fallacious results. Early animistic societies reached the conclusion that subjects in the natural world were “beings” with thoughts and desires, as they appeared to “do” things. A river flowing towards the sea “wanted” to reach the sea. A cloud releasing rain “wanted” to water their crops. By using this as their first untested premise, they were able to reason themselves towards praying to the clouds for rain. When it rained, they reasoned that it was because their prayers had been answered. When it didn’t rain, they reasoned that the clouds were angry and felt disinclined to show benevolence. This is where “gifts” or sacrifices came into the picture – in order to bribe the clouds to release the rain “See, we’re giving a gift to you… maybe you could reciprocate?”.

    We now know that one cannot reason their way to subjects in the natural world possessing human-like sentient qualities. But those animistic societies are yet another example of a truth that has been derived through the logical process – based on the knowledge available at the time. And again we see that this truth is relative to the practitioners of the animistic belief system, but not true to us as observers.

    Sye asserts that God exists because without God there would be no absolute truths. Yet the only truths that we can call absolute are those which are testable, with a 100% success rate (on Earth, H2O freezes at zero degrees Celsius etc). Any truth which cannot be tested is merely relative unless demonstrated otherwise. He states that if God did not exist then no absolute truth could exist – but his statement is not testable, and is therefore only relatively true to himself. Even his evidence of God’s existence (or “revelation”) requires a specific interpretation of a text (the Bible) and the personal, variable feelings within his own consciousness that the text instils. It cannot be stated that it is absolutely true that the Bible is the word of God until this has been tested with a 100% success rate. The believer can believe that it is absolutely true, but this is still a truth relative only to the believer.

    Therefore his statement that “it is absolutely true that God exists” is entirely relative; and his opinion only until it can be tested with a 100% success rate by anybody else. He may counter that the application of logic, and the notion of testable proof would not be possible without God, but this is not testable until he can establish that God exists. Otherwise anyone could supplant “God” with his own untestable agent of choice and claim that the application of logic is a direct result of said agent.

    To conclude:

    The application of logic does not always lead one to the absolute truth.

    The application of logic often leads one to a relative truth.

    Relative truths can still be utilized to produce beneficial results to the individual.

    For truth to be absolute it must be testable by anyone else with a 100% success rate.

    Sye’s initial premise (God is necessary for absolutes to exist) cannot be tested.

    Sye’s initial premise is relative until demonstrated otherwise.

    Sye does not offer absolute proof of the existence of God

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  14. Such a long and complex answer when all that had to be said was "there is nothing about laws of logic that is obviously incompatible with naturalism. If you think they are incompatible, state your reasons for this conclusion. Otherwise, TAG is not an argument for the dependence of laws of logic on God---its merely the claim that they are dependent on God."

    A suggestion to Sye. Use the transcendental argument from reason rather than from laws of logic. Its at least not as obviously untenable as the position that mutually contradictory propositions can be true in a naturalistic universe.

    Alvin Plantinga has a version of it called the evolutionary argument against naturalism (arguing that the reliability of our cognitive factulties is either low or inscrutable if naturalism is true).

    Or, even better, a transcendental argument from moral truths. Laws of logic are self-evidently true. Its far less self-evidently true that there are moral truths rather than moral opinions.

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  15. For truth to be absolute it must be testable by anyone else with a 100% success rate.


    I'm not sure that you're correctly interpreting what was meant by an absolute truth.

    I would understand an absolute truth to be a proposition which cannot, under any circumstance, be false. That would mean logically necessary truths (like 2=2). I can't think of anything else that would qualify---certainly not propositions about physical processes (it is logically possible, for example, for a universe to existe where the boiling point of water was different from what it is....or were water does not and cannot boil at all).

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  16. Ultimately, I think its meaningless to attempt to (or demand of someone else that they) "account for laws of logic".

    Laws of logic are self-evident axiomatic truths. I don't think its even possible for them to be other than axiomatic. That is, I don't think they're provable. And I don't think that's a problem for a legitimately axiomatic proposition. They are simply self-evident and we can say little or nothing more than that about why they are and should be regarded as necessarily true.

    I think Sye simply takes advantage of this fact to try, by a bit of sophistical sleight of hand, to make this out to be a problem for his opponent.

    Really, though, its nothing of the sort. Its Sye's position which entails an obvious absurdity (that 2+2=11 might be true if naturalism is true).

    The best thing to do is simply point this out and move on rather than accepting some illegitimate and absurd burden of proof.

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  17. >>CWC

    Thankee-sai.

    >>David B. Ellis

    While I agree with you that the Moral Argument is much tougher (I'm anticipating it, in fact!), I'd disagree about the otherwise sound Plantinga's welterweight argument there. It has numerous problems:

    (A) Ignores that man evolved from creatures operating on instinctual responses to identity in reality, and that we have vestigial such responses (i.e. no longer the necessary means of our survival);

    (B) Does not assert that such odd beliefs actually existed to preclude naturalism, more or less would be better selectors of survival over men who recognized simply that A is A when it came to survival time;

    (C) At most shows that beliefs about what to do about the identities of reality survived, without discussing how such precedent of beliefs actually affected our physical brain's development, more or less became inheritable directly.

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  18. Ultimately, I think its meaningless to attempt to (or demand of someone else that they) "account for laws of logic".

    Laws of logic are self-evident axiomatic truths. I don't think its even possible for them to be other than axiomatic. That is, I don't think they're provable. And I don't think that's a problem for a legitimately axiomatic proposition. They are simply self-evident and we can say little or nothing more than that about why they are and should be regarded as necessarily true.

    I think Sye simply takes advantage of this fact to try, by a bit of sophistical sleight of hand, to make this out to be a problem for his opponent.


    This is roughly the same as my thinking - presuppositionalism essentially takes the same set of axioms that everyone must use (as you have described), then tries to tie them up into a nice package deal with the label 'God' slapped on top.

    Of course they then say God is in no need of justification/explanation, it's simply a foundational truth that must be accepted. I have to ask, why not just stop at the stage before ie that these axioms are foundational truths that must be accepted (as in order to attempt to deny them one would have to assume their truth in the first place) instead of introducing another pointless caveat on top that adds nothing in terms of explanation.

    The completely arbitrary selection of the biblical God gets on my nerves as well - when you hear Bahnsen/Frame/Sye/AN Other apologist claiming 'the impossibility of the contrary', the supposed proof works exactly as well for Zoroastrianism, Islam, Geusha worship, or indeed any as yet 'undiscovered' god. Where we can find explanations as to how these alternatives have been refuted is never made apparent by the presuppers.

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  19. Also, David, the challenge is this: if, given naturalism, the Laws of Logic are conventional or subjective (i.e. in the mind) then it leads to obvious absurdities, such as whether they exist without conscious beings, whether two culturally or individually subjective sets of laws can lead to two absolute conclusions which contradict each other, etc. And if they exist materially, then being not matter and energy, this contradicts the definition of what exists in a naturalistic universe.

    The argument as a whole goes:

    (1) If God did not exist, the laws of logic would not exist absolutely.
    (2) The laws of logic exist absolutely.
    (3) Therefore, God exists.

    This is a deductively valid argument.

    Premise (2) was granted to Sye. Premise (1) is where I challenge Sye; it is justified, as I loosely presented, by the following argument:

    (1) The Laws of Logic are in the mind, in the material world, or reflect the nature of an omniscient, omnipresent Mind.
    (2) The Laws of Logic are not in the mind or in the material world.
    (3) Therefore, the Laws of Logic are in an omnipresent, omniscient Mind.

    This is also deductively valid. Premise (2) is granted. However, I challenge Premise (1) in that it presents false alternatives; the Laws of Logic are based inherently in reality's every constituent and exist in the mind.

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  20. The "laws of logic" are no more supernatural than math or numbers, they are human classifications for observations *we think* are universally constant. Laws of logic just like laws of physics can potentially be "broken" if and when we observe them not to be universal. If you want to argue that the properties of the universe that those "laws" describe must require a creator, you have to do that without invoking the grammatical (not logical) argument that "a law requires a law-giver" which is so often used in these arguments.

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  21. >>Funk

    You're correct in a sense. Even if every position is granted as true and valid, the most the TAG arguer can say is that the Laws of Logic can't be accounted for by anything but a transcendent mind.

    The TAG is traditionally presuppositionalist, meaning they have a "see how we can explain this consistently, and you have a hard time?" approach, which only (by their own admission) in and of itself demonstrates consistency in belief at most, not that their belief is true.

    Bahnsen did a lot of work either showing that other religions didn't explain what was going on with logic/gave contradictory accounts (i.e. Zen Buddhism) or gave accounts but were logically inconsistent otherwise (i.e. Islam). There's also an argument he had against general deism, i.e. the source being a God apart from theistic description, but I haven't seen any of these.

    Problem is, even if all of this work is granted as true and valid, and even if the Presuppositionalist has confidence that Christ is the sole narrow gate, it is still the fallacy of the "Argument from Ignorance" to declare absolutism in TAG, since a God responsible for the Laws of Logic could come along and reveal His word next year in a consistent way, which would invalidate Christianity. The only way to establish Christianity as a source for TAG logically even given all the work done is to prove that it would be impossible for the religion to have sprung up otherwise. Then you're relying on proving Christianity from a different proof from TAG, rendering it ineffective.

    I wanted to present this to Sye, and he may answer it here, but the usual response is, "what is your account for your reasoning process you use to make this argument?"

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  22. >>Mark

    The Laws of Logic can be deemed universal even given one's first sensory element, i.e. that what exists is an assumed irreducible blob of sight, sound, touch, and what have you, at any given frozen frame, and that's it for existence (it isn't of course, as defined in my post). For at least sensory experience is said blob; even if assumed irreducible, the set of quality in the identity of sensory experience is immediately nonempty, meaning by definition it exists, giving us one metaphysically linked "p" statement. Maybe there are more things in reality - separate objects, things we don't perceive, things in the corner of the Universe we'll never perceive. But the Laws of Logic are universal from all even given consideration of one element "p" where truth is correspondence to reality (i.e. in this case unitary quality): we have as I demonstrated non-contradiction, identity, excluded middle, and even without particulars we may grasp the other three axioms.

    Here's an example, the Law of Identity as applied to every existent to reality no matter what qualities they possess or where they are, derived from its observation on one existent (sense perception) with one assumingly (but not actually) irreducible quality (glob of sensory returns):

    Excluded Middle: p v not(p) = T

    De Morgan's on this property yields

    not (p v not(p)) = not(T)= not (p) and not (p) = F (by Idempotence)

    yielding

    not(T) = F

    sim. Not (F) = T.

    This means: any reality constituent q (even if q=p if sense experience is it; the set is at least nonempty here) is either true or false, based on the correspondence observation that my given consideration p is particularly either true or false. Identity is therefore universally established.

    The other five laws are generalizable similarly through the Six Axioms on Particulars likewise, meaning the Six Axioms generalize to the whole burrito of existence, every corner of it, every moment of it, since we are basing our epistemic assumption p on a presupposed reality statement of the nonempty identity set of sense perception.

    These puppies hold everywhere in metaphysics.

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  23. Darrin, I haven't really studied formal logic so a bit of that was above my head. But I know that there are instances where some "laws" of logic can break down, such as with relativity. The principle that A cannot be A and not-A is valid in our everyday perception, but does not stand true when you're talking about a straight line also being a curved line relative to the point of view of the observer due to a curvature in space, or a particle being in two places at once in quantum physics. Laws of logic are like newtonian laws of motion, they work fine in our everyday common sense, but are by no means universal absolutes. My point was that "laws" of logic and physics are the manmade descriptions of the world's properties, not the properties themselves. So when people say, like gene cook said on the narrow mind for instance, that you have to "account for" the existence of laws of logic, it's like saying you have to account for the existence of numbers. You really don't, we made them up.

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  24. >>Mark

    Very good points to address once again!

    Be aware that science itself has its own basis in reality. After all, the scientific method is based on the absoluteness of logic and the reliability of the future, for instance, which presupposes identity and causation.

    Now, in the case of relativity, I agree with you that classical mechanics are not applicable and that hyperbolic geometry (IIRC from my undergrad days) is a better topological description of the universe. But recall that traditional geometry are based on Euclid's "axioms," which are different than the axioms I propose here - they are propositions, which are not things that have anything to do with logical proof qua logical proof. In fact, much of geometry's dalliances come from removing one of Euclid's axioms and seeing the strange results from there.

    GTR vs. Classical Mechanics demonstrates the nature of the identity of reality behind the scientific consideration. At "our level," classical mechanics holds so well it fooled even Newton and the entirety of his epistemic context. It took many years, much mathematics, and many new tools to prove it wrong, but that increased the context to describe the identity of large-scale (and in QM, small-scale) situations, i.e. to bring previously unobservable qualities to our observational level.

    In this context, GTR and QM are true, but in Newton's context, Classical was true, absolutely, in the epistemological sense. For, Newton's ability to interact with reality given his senses and tools to heighten his senses brought him no more logically possible qualities about reality than they did ... both Einstein and Newton described reality truthfully, only, the epistemic quality of metaphysical knowledge has been heightened.

    As far as QM goes, I have some issues with Copenhagen, but at most they show that the (already invalid by GTR) laws of nature are probabilistic at a provably high level. But this actually proves my case further - remember, our recent scientific prowess has isolated (at least in theory) fermions, which we obviously couldn't detect a thousand years back; we have the possible building blocks of matter, and some notions of their nature! They, too, possess identity; their identity is far different than, say, that of a skateboard.

    But a skateboard is made up of fermions! If applicable, we can apply such knowledge to determine if it is essential to the definitions of what we consider in philosophy, and so far such Quantum Mechanical ideals are essential only to small-scale experiments. At most, given the Copenhagen Interpretation, hard-core determinism is falsified (which I believe already given human nature), and that's not at all implied by causality IMO. Stuff like the Bell's Experiment are also interesting, but IIRC refute the absolute locality of a photon, and that's it. And we don't really even know how to interpret that properly yet!

    Of course, Laws of Nature are not absolute, but such low probabilities of their failure or inapplicability (in the QM or GTR sense, or both) are irrelevant and nonessential. They are presupposed by the Law of Identity and Law of Causation anyway, which dictated QM and GTR to begin with ...

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  25. To say that newton was correct given his vantage point is fine, but my point is that he was describing properties which were in principle universally absolute, not in fact universally absolute. And, our vantage point being limited as well, our "laws" of logic and physics are considered universally true in principle, not in fact, and even though they may be used as an axiomatic basis for other assertions they are always open to refutation and testing as new information comes to light.

    You have the strange ability to say many things and neither agree with me or disagree with me, lol. Formal logic is useful I'm sure, but I think it can be blinding as well. Logic and philosophy ought to provoke thought, not replace it with axioms and formulas and such. When that happens you can argue and debate for hours about things like "presuppositionalism" (which literally means "assumptionism") and your opponent can twist logic so that at the end he's convinced his audience that he's somehow proven that jesus was the son of god, when of course the laws of logic and morality or whatever the specific thing being used has nothing whatsoever to do with any of that. There's an old joke, something along the lines of if you give an engineer enough time he can mathematically prove that he doesn't exist.

    I've been thinking lately about how religions and cults (which are sort of the same thing if you think about it, just with different levels of social acceptance) often couch unreasonable propositions in their own unique jargon. The tom cruise video of him accepting the "scientology freedom medal of valor" is a good example of this. I think that apologists do this a bit too, especially with arguments like presuppositionalism (assumptionism). They take arguments which, if expressed in ordinary language would sound absurd, and couch them in official sounding language so they can frame them in a way that they seem to make more sense than they do.

    If a presuppositionalist came to you and said "Now according to my philosophy if I get one free assumption at the beginning, then I can PROVE that my religion is true", what would you say to them? You might say that you can conclude any ridiculous thing if you get one free assumption, and that that is the equivalent of saying "this is true because I assume that it is true", and philosophically and logically is entirely baseless. Or you might respond with a reductio ad absurdum and say "If I assume that my grandmother has wheels, she is a wagon. I assume (er, I mean "presuppose" ::cough cough:: bullshit ::cough cough::) my grandmother has wheels, therefore "logically" my grandmother is a wagon.

    This is an argument which is so silly it's hardly worth bothering with, but couched in philosophical jargon it seems more reasonable.

    This is why I don't get too into formal logic and try to learn just enough philosophy to stimulate my own mind.

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  26. I'm not sure I agree with everything Darrin is saying, but perhaps I misunderstand. For instance:

    The Laws of Logic can be deemed universal even given one's first sensory element

    Darrin then goes into a discussion of simple binary, modal logic. If we define AND, NOT, and OR and we restrict the type of prepositions to yield simple true/false answers then perhaps it follows but I don't see why these operations and these restrictions must apply so I don't see how they can be derived from observation.

    Take for instance the question of whether the sky is blue. At what time of day, in which location? If we compare the light-blue sky in a prairie winter to the deep, rich blue of an evening in the tropics, are they both "blue"? If there are clouds, is it both true and not true that the sky is blue, just with different degrees of confidence, coverage or precision? My t-shirt is red but because it has a logo and it's faded from use, it's also not red. My story of catching a huge trout is generally true but I may exaggerate or forget so it's not true. We can use logical systems with fuzzier degrees of truth, with temporal attributes or other features to reason.

    For each system we declare the elements of the system and the allowed operations and then we can derive further laws. If we use simple truth-tables to define AND, OR, NOT, EXISTS, FOR ALL, and IMPLIES we can then derive the Law of the Excluded Middle and other laws, but surely these arise as a result of the logical system we've chosen and not as some sort of divine or platonic ideals.


    Of course if the logical system isn't a given or a requirement but a choice based on circumstances and the laws are derived based on the initial (arbitrary) axioms, it can hardly be divine. I'm not trying to defend Sye but I'm not sure I agree with Darrin either.

    Am I missing something?

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  27. They are presupposed by the Law of Identity and Law of Causation anyway, which dictated QM and GTR to begin with ...

    I hear that "Law of Causation" a lot from theists but rarely from others. What are you referring to, and what does the Law of Causation say?

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  28. Also, when you said "very good points to address once again" were you saying I made very good points again, or that you had already addressed my points?

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  29. >>Mark

    Heard you on the show - if you're the same Mark as the first poster then you made good points there, if not then sorry for the mixup!

    >>Tyro

    The law of causality is identity applied to acting existents. The resulting effect, from the nature of the identity of the interacting constituents thereof, determines the identity of the effect. In layman's terms, it's the rearrangement of what is (Quentin Smith is a pos-atheist philosopher who holds to this Causality, see "Improbability of God")

    The epistemological/metaphysical statement "a and b" or a^b =def. "The epistemological consideration of a truth valuation of the simultaneous existence of reality-constituents of distinguishable identities" or if strictly metaphysically needed, "the simultaneous existence of distinguishable identities"

    Or avb =def. "the epistemological consideration of a truth valuation contrasting the simultaneous individual truth valuation of distinguishable identities." or if strictly metaphysically needed, "the simultaneous juxtaposed, respective existence and nonexistence of distinguishable identities with the additional consideration of "and" defined above"

    "Not" =def. metaphysically, "the metaphysical falsity of a identity or quality's existence."

    These are rather off the cuff, but they are needed. Thanks for the challenge -- I would look forward to hearing your other counterarguments (but don't feed my opponent!)

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  30. >>Tyro

    The "take for instance" paragraph still presupposes identity - this is what I mean that we should all take into knowledge the context of what we are speaking. This is *especially* important in moral considerations.

    But context presupposes that a network of different identities - sometimes, like QM, impossible provably to know epistemologically - must be taken into consideration, since they, as the "the sky is blue" example, all have an effect on the color of the sky. We also have to take into context the nature of the identity of the perceiving mechanisms - a hypothetical rational being who sees in black and white will have the identity of his eyes not register those metaphysical qualities which would otherwise register "blue," and a blind man would not have the availability of the tool of it!

    Memory is a whole different ball game altogether :)

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  31. >>Tyro

    ... and don't sweat disagreement with me. I expected harsh, if not outright virulent, criticism from skeptics, which in the past has been actually *worse* than Sye or any Presupper. I actually appreciate yours, Mark's, CWC's, and everyone else's honest critiques. I hardly receive them without hate.

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  32. Yes, I'm the same mark. And thanks. It's not that hard to - they're not actually very good at debating, they're just good at using underhanded tricks to look good losing an argument. I shredded every argument or position they gave one after another and they just keep skipping to another one as if nothing had happened. But if you pay close attention they're just dodging dodging. They also jiggle the volume knob whenever an atheist calls in so you can barely understand half of what they say, which is just pathetic. Listen to the guy that called in at the end of the last show, half of what he says is almost muted. But the volume always stays smooth and consistent for theists...

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  33. I'd disagree about the otherwise sound Plantinga's welterweight argument there.


    Don't get me wrong. I think it can pretty easily be demonstrated to be false (and argued my case for that in a conversation at DC not long ago).

    But its at least not as absurd as claiming logically impossible propositions can be true if naturalism is true.

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  34. (1) If God did not exist, the laws of logic would not exist absolutely.
    (2) The laws of logic exist absolutely.
    (3) Therefore, God exists.

    This is a deductively valid argument.

    Premise (2) was granted to Sye. Premise (1) is where I challenge Sye; it is justified, as I loosely presented, by the following argument:

    (1) The Laws of Logic are in the mind, in the material world, or reflect the nature of an omniscient, omnipresent Mind.
    (2) The Laws of Logic are not in the mind or in the material world.
    (3) Therefore, the Laws of Logic are in an omnipresent, omniscient Mind.


    I don't share the view that laws of logic are "things" or "objects" having an independent existence.

    Laws of logic are simply propositions.

    Just like the statement "my chair I'm sitting in is made of wood" is a proposition. The propositions of the kind we describe as laws of logic (or logically necessary truths) no more need some independent "metaphysical basis" than any other statement or proposition a thinking being makes.

    They're just a peculiar class of propositions (ones that can't under any circumstances be false). But this requires no indulgence in metaphysical theorizing. They're still simply propositions made by human beings.

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  35. Darrin - thanks for the clarification. I'll have to think about it some more since some of the language goes over my head. I understood contextually that you were using modal, prepositional logic but I wanted to observe that there are other logical systems available and that we select the based on our application and abstraction. We can construct logical systems to suit our applications. This alone makes me think that the argument that logic comes from God is suspect but since you're taking a different tack, I'll button up :)

    The law of causality is identity applied to acting existents. The resulting effect, from the nature of the identity of the interacting constituents thereof, determines the identity of the effect. In layman's terms, it's the rearrangement of what is (Quentin Smith is a pos-atheist philosopher who holds to this Causality, see "Improbability of God")

    Thanks, I hadn't heard that definition before. Since I'm guessing this is a tangent I'll just note that as with many "laws" such as thermodynamics and gravity, I think this Law of Causality breaks down at the quantum level as well. That's why physicists deal with "locality" since all other aspects of causality are broken. I'm not sure it's relevant, I just keep seeing it pop up. Please continue with your regularly scheduled debate :)

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  36. Actually, it looks like David Ellis is making the same observation, that logical systems are things which we construct, not things we find in nature. I think of it as a form of mathematics - do Integers exist absolutely? Reals? Complex numbers? Vectors? Matrices? We can create abstractions of the real world which have integer amounts but surely a world without a god would also have things which have integer amounts.

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  37. Aye. Laws of Logic are thing we DO construct ... but be careful. For, one may ask, construction from WHAT?

    My answer: Reality. The laws of logic don't "model" reality; they don't "describe" reality; they *are* the epistemological correspondence of reality in the mind, given the correspondence theory of truth. It's reality in ya head. :)

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  38. The laws of logic don't "model" reality; they don't "describe" reality; they *are* the epistemological correspondence of reality in the mind, given the correspondence theory of truth.

    Be careful with that. Modal prepositional logic cannot model everything that is real just as integers cannot. I think you'll find that these logic systems operate only on abstractions of reality. If they are to reflect reality, we need the right abstraction or model, the right system of logic, and the right axioms. These aren't self-evident. They aren't even trivial.

    As for the correspondence of reality in the mind, we make logical errors like dogs make crap, it's ignored in polite conversation but it's routine, unavoidable. Logic is so fascinating because we think it's how our minds should work but don't :)

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  39. Actually, it looks like David Ellis is making the same observation, that logical systems are things which we construct, not things we find in nature.


    I agree that they're not things we find in nature (in the sense that laws of logic are simply propositions rather than independent objects). However, I want to make it clear that laws of logic are not, in my opinion, simply arbitrary constructions. They're propositions that are true.

    What I'm pointing out is that there is no need to bring metaphysics into the discussion other than to point out that Sye seems to be making a mistaken (or at least unwarranted) metaphysical assumption---that laws of logic are in some sense independently existent "objects" of some variety that must be accounted for by one's metaphysical system.

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  40. well looks as if sye has thrown in the towel due to lack of understanding.

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  41. Heh, I'm not sure that Darrin's clarification could be called conversational English. It's a tricky subject but wow, even with one year of modal logic and four years of mathematics I'm still struggling to understand what you're trying to say :)

    -Since we start with the sense perceptions, and recognize we are conscious, and cannot perceive this consciousness, something exists outside of sense perceptions. Therefore, an objective reality exists.

    You lost me here. What do you mean we can't perceive our own consciousness? We are aware of our consciousness so doesn't this mean that we perceive it? If, as you say, we can't perceive our consciousness, how does this establish an objective reality? (More on this...)

    (i.e. things which possess identity, or identifiable closed-off sets of quality) call them p, q, s

    What does "closed-off sets of quality" mean and are the p and q still referring to "the glob of sense perception" and "consciousness (the identification of p)" respectively, in which case what is 's'? Or are they referring to items in the new set of "more than one particular"?

    Oh, note: the existence of an external reality is already there due to the fact consciousness can't be perceived; since it is the identifier of at least the senses, it cannot be the producer of the senses, since it must first identify to produce, showing that the evidences of the senses are based on reality.

    You've shown (or tried to show) that our senses are independent of our consciousness (whatever that is). I don't think you've demonstrated that the input to our senses is external. I see no reason to rule out a subconscious or other internal process which feeds input to our consciousness via our "glob of sense perception". After all, we have the sensations of sight and sound when we dream yet these are internal. Amputees can have phantom limbs which feel touch or pain, yet these sensations are not external. We may hallucinate and see, hear or smell things which are internal.

    I think in mentally healthy people, our senses are a good general guide to objective reality but it isn't absolute. It sounds to me like, for your argument to succeed, you argue that the mere fact that our senses perceive objects means those objects must be external yet we know that this isn't necessarily true.

    This accounts for the uniformity of the laws of nature. Since uniformity does not presuppose a time-dependence on observability of any applicable particular, this also shows it will always be uniform. So much for the "problem" of induction, since causality is identity in action.

    Now I'm totally lost. I don't see how the definitions of AND and OR should impact natural "laws". Everything we call a "law" breaks down at some point so we know they aren't uniform. We have theories which get around this but they are incomplete and they involve explicit phase transitions or terms which go to 1, 0, or infinity under different conditions which has the same effect.

    Perhaps the logical rules you defined will be uniform (I think they are), but isn't this like saying all operations in a Cartesian space will be uniform throughout nature? You've defined an abstraction and given the rules and because none of these are linked to observations, they will always operate in the same way. And like Cartesian space appears to correspond to our day-to-day reality, when we try to blindly apply it to the rest of the universe we see that reality trips us up. Cartesian space may be uniform but we cannot uniformly apply it to nature. Perhaps these logical laws you defined apply uniformly in in your mathematical abstraction but this doesn't mean they must always apply to reality in a uniform fashion. If they do, you need to provide the mapping between your abstract symbols, operations and prepositions and real-world objects, operations and attributes. It's not clear to me that such a mapping must exist or that it would operate uniformly throughout the universe.



    And since any of these questions may just make a complex subject even more complicated, maybe we should be seeking to simplify and narrow our focus. Perhaps Darrin could just ask Sye if she (he?) would just acknowledge the existence of an external, objective reality and that our senses are a good but not infallible guide to that reality. Then you could use some concrete examples and make your points more accessible. You might be onto something but I fear that Sye won't bother to see.

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  42. Tyro: I think Darrin did a great job nailing down the otherwise vague "Laws of Logic" statement and how they arise from a self-evident base (essentially, a reformulation of Descartes's "cogito ergo sum").

    What do you mean we can't perceive our own consciousness? We are aware of our consciousness so doesn't this mean that we perceive it?

    I don't claim to speak for Darrin, but his definitions of consciousness ("the process of identification of existence") and sense perception ("the immediate contents of consciousness") implies that you (ie, your consciousness) has access to the _contents_ of consciousness, but your consciousness cannot both be itself _and_ contents of itself (I'll leave the proof of that to someone else).

    Now I'm totally lost. I don't see how the definitions of AND and OR should impact natural "laws". Everything we call a "law" breaks down at some point so we know they aren't uniform.

    This is one of my hang-ups; I wish we could be rid of the "Law of Gravity" or "Law of Thermodynamics". They are the "Scientific Theory of Gravity" and the "Scientific Theory of Thermodynamics", and they do break down upon fine examination of the universe. Mathematical and logical laws do not "break down" at some point; they are a rule system that arises from an observation of our reality, but first and foremost an abstract rule system consistent within themselves (leaving aside Godel's theorems and logics that don't correspond to our reality for a moment). First-order predicate logic doesn't "break down" at the extremes, at least not in the way you imply. p v T == p, even at the quantum scale or at relativistic velocities. That is to say, true statements in logic do not depend upon physical/exterior objects for their truthfulness; true statements in logic are a result of a processing system following the so-called "Laws of logic", regardless of how the processing is done or whether there is symbol-to-"real"-object correspondence.

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  43. I've got loads to do coming up Tyre, but interesting comments. Are you a math major? I'm a math grad student - I think I'm trying to fit in too much into my subject here.

    Don't confuse natural laws with laws of logic (such as the last paragraph on the application of a Cartesian coordinate geometry). The laws of logic have to be universal to even understand what the nature of a "natural law breakdown" even is. It has identity that corresponds to reality, ultimately. :)

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  44. Until I can answer fully, I endorse Ian's take. It's tutoring time for now!

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  45. At this point I would be saying:

    Sye if you don't understand logic you shouldn't debate it. Not only have you exposed yourself as unable to understand some basic metaphysics but your claim that only God can account for Logic has been nullified by your ignorance of what logic is.

    Case closed. Darrin wins. Everyone who ever argued Sye is validated, but not surprised.

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  46. Well done, Darrin. I would hope that Sye goes on and does some further research on the basis and theory of logic; regardless of whether it affirms God or not, the beauty inherent in math and logic is its own reward.

    Now, if I could only get my head around category theory... :)

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  47. Ian,

    I don't claim to speak for Darrin, but his definitions of consciousness ("the process of identification of existence") and sense perception ("the immediate contents of consciousness") implies that you (ie, your consciousness) has access to the _contents_ of consciousness, but your consciousness cannot both be itself _and_ contents of itself (I'll leave the proof of that to someone else).

    Doesn't defining consciousness as "the process of identification of existence" presuppose that other things exist? From what you're saying, Darrin is trying to argue that there are thoughts and that which thinks, or concepts and a mind which manipulates them. Is that right? And yes, the mind does not contain itself but then the mind certainly can contain a representation or conception of itself just as it contains the conception of televisions, cats and keyboards. The consciousness can't contain itself but so what, consciousness can't contain cats either. We have the manipulator and the manipulated which does give us some distinct categories of things but I don't think it tells us that any of these must come from "outside".

    Are you a math major?

    No, but I debated becoming one so I bulked up on as many honours math and logic courses as I could take. In the end I took computing science and left University after my BSc. I've grown rusty and while I've taken two philosophy courses, they were a stone's throw from math. Everything else I've had to pick up in my spare time.

    @Darrin,

    The laws of logic have to be universal to even understand what the nature of a "natural law breakdown" even is. It has identity that corresponds to reality, ultimately. :)

    I wonder what it means for logic to be universal. Is it the same thing as saying Cartesian geometry is universal, or integer mathematics is universal? They all define an input space, a set of operations and everything is strictly deterministic within this sphere. When we apply it to the real world we find that things get much messier. Perhaps the Cartesian geometry isn't as far fetched as you may thing. It's certainly absolute and universal and it corresponds pretty well to reality (provided it's not too big or small, not too massive and not too fast). I suspect that even simple concepts such as identity grow very messy when we look very closely. We can talk about "the person" but if we have a powerful microscope and look closely we may find it hard to say exactly where we begin and end. At what point does the food we eat stop being external and become internal? A mosquito on our leg is not a part of us but are the digestive bacteria in our gut? What about the mitochondria in our cells? How about a retrovirus which has woven itself into the DNA of our cells? If we lose a limb, are we the same person? What if we scratch off some skin, pluck a hair, think a new thought or read a work from a book, are we still the same person? Identity isn't simple and trying to force it into a simple true/false logic system is bound to have omissions. If we were to think about a logical system to discuss reality and properly represent these nuances it isn't clear that a simple, binary modal logic is going to be very useful.

    As David Ellis clarified, I don't think logic is arbitrary, cultural or artificial any more than mathematics is, but I don't see how an abstraction could be "real".

    Anyway, thanks for provoking some thoughts.

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  48. More than anything else, the fact that Sye never (not once) asked for clarification - THAT is what reveals him as a buffoon. When faced with an argument he didn't understand, he simply barfed out his stock challenge and hoped you'd be unable to answer it.

    If he was concerned with truth in any way shape or form, he would have at least tried to understand what Darrin wrote.

    He didn't.

    He's not.

    Case closed.

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  49. From what I've seen of sye's debating skills he demands that his opponent "account for" the laws of logic before he will even express how his god does it. But when faced with an accounting here he chokes.

    Also from what I see of sye's and apologists like him he seems to have a "black box" approach to god.

    "For x to exist my god must exist because x is part of his nature. Prove me wrong...."

    Well I've got a magic elf in my pocket and it's part of his nature, so you prove me wrong. ;)

    Hey what do I do with all these peanuts I brought along?

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  50. When faced with an argument he didn't understand, he simply barfed out his stock challenge and hoped you'd be unable to answer it.


    Sye's asserting an absurd position. I think we can all agree on that. But let's be fair, Darrin stated his position in extremely technical language he had every reason to think Sye couldn't make heads or tails of.

    Personally, I don't think that's a particularly worthwhile way to engage in a civil and respectful debate.

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  51. David B. Ellis: But let's be fair, Darrin stated his position in extremely technical language he had every reason to think Sye couldn't make heads or tails of.

    I don't agree. Describing the foundations of any topic as complex as "logic" in a rigorous way is going to require some technical language. If Sye can't follow Darrin's already-simplified description, maybe he should research the topic he's trying to debate.

    As I eluded to earlier, I'm trying to wrap my head around category theory (another foundational description of structure in mathematics and logic). I don't understand everything, and I definitely wouldn't get involved in a serious debate about category theory without a better background. That's just common sense...

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  52. Anyone who read Sye's initial post and the comments in the thread should realize that he's a featherweight yet Darrin went into the ring with body armour, a concrete barrier and anti-tank machine guns. I know, Sye was naive and uneducated but it wasn't fair or respectful. What did Sye learn? Probably not to talk to Derrin, certainly didn't learn anything about TAG.

    I think Derrin should seek out better debate partners to better showcase his skills but if he engages with the likes of Sye, he should be prepared to speak as if to a Junior High School audience.

    Oh well, interesting for us :)

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  53. Posted this on the other thread:

    //

    Sye,

    I want to get you a better response, but I won't have a computer of my own until Monday (I'm on a temp right now). I will pick this up then in a more conversational tone!

    D.

    //


    >>Ellis

    I didn't mean to have that happen, actually. The post was drawn up for him and another Calvinist friend of mine, and it worked fine to kick off a debate with the latter (over at the TwoChix Apologetics Facebook group). I'll try fitting it to Sye if he's still around (see above).

    D.

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  54. David B Ellis wrote let's be fair, Darrin stated his position in extremely technical language he had every reason to think Sye couldn't make heads or tails of.

    Personally, I don't think that's a particularly worthwhile way to engage in a civil and respectful debate.


    I, too, wished that Darrin could have responded more succinctly; I even wrote this at SMRT, where we had many interested in watching the debate. Nonetheless, Sye's very predictable - I've found myself having to predict where he'd attack and set up my argument ahead of time.

    It seems to me Darrin did exactly what was needed.

    And even if Darrin's approach could have been different, Sye did not once ask for clarification; he didn't even try to understand. He simply found his usual format wasn't going to be useful, and bailed.

    Sorry - Sye came to the table unwilling to debate. That's not Darrin's responsibility (imho)

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  55. @ Mark

    http://wearesmrt.com/bb

    It's a place to discuss skeptical "stuff".

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  56. Mark,

    What, if I may ask, is SMRT?

    Some
    More
    Absurdly
    Ridiculous
    Thoughts

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  57. or if you are picky

    Some
    More
    Ridiculous
    Thoughts

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  58. @ Dan

    Dani'El isn't about anymore, you might be missing the unbridled support.

    Just for you:

    "Slam Debunked! Another one bites the dust! Shalom! Go Dan! Evilution!"

    Cheers ;)

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  59. Dan instead of failing analogies 101 (call me picky), how bout you come round and back-up that claim about ridiculous thoughts. Or do you need your cheer-squad like you need your imaginary friend?

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  60. Sorry Mark, I would have responded to you several days ago about SMRT. Thx to CwC and Darren...

    Incidentally, Dani'El may be back

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  61. It's fine whateverman, I just now read it : D

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  62. Btw gene cook is calling you out on tnma.blogspot.com in his description of his last show if you didn't see it.

    I used to call into his show on open phones friday or saturday or whatever ages ago, and one week I didn't call in and he spent the first 5 or 10 minutes of the show bashing me because he thought I was just leaving him twisting in the wind. My universe does not revolve around him, lmao. He ended up I think having to cancel the show after like a half hour of dead air. Now he has a side-kick as sophistic as he is.

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  63. Back.

    My laptop screen blew last weekend (second one in a row) and Sye can vouch for these troubles, so I'm sure Gene will be all right.

    Been prepping my Cal II class up, but I'm getting a response ready now for the thread below.

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  64. I just wanted to add that I've been watching the thread hoping for updates. This is meant as support, rather than pressure: I simply want to see if Sye can discuss the topic honestly...

    I'm *not* predicting the winner or result; for all I know, Darren, Sye could clean your clock. Nonetheless, Sye's antics have labeled him as dishonest, and I really dislike rejecting a person's opinions based on past behavior. Opinions (imho) should be taken on a case-by-case basis...

    Regardless, cheers...

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  65. I'm amused because I can see Sye hasn't made his stance and will just continue asking questions, ignoring basic metaphysics.

    He'll then attack Darrin's position (poorly) and offer the "impossibility of the contrary" if pushed far enough.

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  66. Whateverman,

    I do not personally know Sye but I do see merit in TAG. Please point out one of these "antics" that have labeled him as dishonest so I can decide for myself if that is the case.

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  67. Vagon,

    Aside from Sye, what is wrong with the "impossibility of the contrary" type of arguments?

    It seems that Darrin uses this very argument in favor of the law of Identity:

    "we can't dismiss the Law of Identity, since without it, we couldn't talk about *any* world (including the actual one)."

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  68. I'm personally very uncomfortable with this talk about these logical laws being "inherent in all members of existence". As far as I can see, Darrin never presents an argument for this and instead relies on us using logic in this debate: "This is an axiom, or a statement which any potential disproof must assume in its statement." This doesn't say anything about "all members of existence", whatever that means.

    I also think that Darrin is really stretching his case and possibly using the False Dichotomy when he says that discussing issues logically entails that modal logic must be true. Simple Modal Logic is not the only logical system we use and in regular life it's probably a rarity. For instance, I accept that many things Darrin says are mostly accurate yet this simple position cannot be modelled well by his own logical system. Does this not disprove his claim that we can discuss issues logically without relying on the excluded middle?

    He says that modal logic arises from nature and isn't arbitrary yet how can this be? What does Darrin use to derive modal logic from observation? What about fuzzy logic or nuance?

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  69. Aside from Sye, what is wrong with the "impossibility of the contrary" type of arguments?

    I think those arguments are great. Make an assumption, derive a contradiction, conclude the assumption must be incorrect. Nothing wrong with that.

    The problem I have is that proving one statement is false doesn't mean that its opposite must be true. This is where Darrin's argument fails.

    For instance: "Pink elephants eat only flying koalas" is false, yet "Pink elephants do not eat only flying koalas" is not true. Or: "I am absolutely sure that God does exist" isn't true yet "I am absolutely sure that God does not exist" is not true either. The clever person would note that in the second example, the two sentences aren't truly opposites which is my point. Darrin can show that logic isn't totally arbitrary without having us conclude that it doesn't have some arbitrary aspects.

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  70. Truthseeker to Wem: "I do not personally know Sye but I do see merit in TAG. Please point out one of these "antics" that have labeled him as dishonest so I can decide for myself if that is the case. "

    He cannot, many of them attempt ad hom's so they can get out of answering hard questions and discredit Sye. So yea, please show your "evidence" about Sye, Wem.

    Otherwise, whatever man.

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  71. Sye misquotes people and when called on it says "Why is lying wrong in YOUR worldview???"

    Sye refuses to answer questions but mocks people who won't answer his.

    Sye tries to bury people with questions and rarely makes statements.

    Sye resorts to Ad-homs:
    "My favourite thing about the Sye debates was when he realized I wasn't swallowing his bullshit and that a 23 year old girl was making his look foolish. He then changed his tactic to calling me ugly and disappeared shortly after from our blog."
    -Maragon


    Sye makes 14 year old girls uncomfortable:
    Gorth Satana said...

    Sye has pushed me over the edge today. He and Obsidian were talking to Rae/Emily, a 14 year old girl who became uncomfortable when they asked her to imagine being molested. She said she was uncomfortable and wasn't going to reply to them. Then Sye called her evasive and added a smiley emoticon.
    This behavior disgusts me. And I want everyone to know it, so I'm posting this everywhere.

    Here's part of the conversation:


    Obsidian said: "...if there was this old creepy guy who tried to molest you...
    molesting children for fun..
    If the child molester from...
    make child molesting for fun..." etc..

    Rae Comfont said: "Obsidian, your obsession with child molesting as an example makes me uncomfortable and I'm no longer going to reply."

    Sye said: "Oh, that's a new twist to the evasion. Josh would be proud! :-) "

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  72. Sye uses the phrase "impossibility of the contrary" as his own "'cos I say so!"

    His usual method of arguing "you can't explain such and such therefore God exists" is gratingly stupid.

    His "logic exists therefore God exists" is brainless.

    His "God exists because of the impossibility of the contrary" is just asking people to prove God doesn't exist. Which is forgetting where the burden of proof lies.

    And Dan +++ often calls Sye a "Rock Star" on his blog...

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  73. Chris,

    You are not allowing the whole story. You are quite simply quote mining. I remember the conversation well as Sye then said to Gorth "Well he didn't, but still, if you believe that Rae is actually a 14 year old girl, then you are as dumb as you argue."

    None of us believed it was a 14 year old girl and when I gently called her on the carpet she disappeared.

    I later said "Em if you are 14 then indeed with kid gloves we understand you are uncomfortable. That is indeed the whole point to say such a horrible thing. It is universally wrong everywhere in any universe. Someone with common sense and logical thinker could make the conclusion that its an absolute wrong. If you are not 14 then shame on you, little attention grabber, now grow up!"

    Anyway she/he disappeared after that. So get off your soap box Chris.

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  74. Chris,

    His "logic exists therefore God exists" is brainless.

    It should be easy for someone as smart as you then, maybe you can tell us then how do you account for the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic, on what basis do you proceed with the assumption that they will not change, and how is it possible to know anything for certain according to YOUR worldview?

    Maybe not

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  75. Darrin, can't you see the game Sye is playing? He is just asking you questions to demostrate that any epistemology you choose has it's problems. He will just keep asking you question after question that will bring out the flaws in any epistemology. And of course he will pretend his method of knowledge is perfect because "goddidit". Unless you can present a "perfect" epistemology that offers "absolute certain" knowledge, Sye will never be satisfied. Since no philosopher has ever achieved this feat, I don't think you should play along with this trap Sye is setting up.

    It's funny how philosophy cannot figure out how to justify what is, literally, right in front of its nose.

    Someone on another blog made an excellent point...
    TAG really just boils down to this:
    1) Present opponent with insoluble problem.

    2) Claim that opponent’s inability to solve insoluble problem invalidates their position.

    3) When asked for solution to insoluble problem, run like hell.

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  76. Truthseeker - Tell me what the difference is between "impossibility of the contrary" and axiomatic foundation.

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  77. Dan +†+ said...
    It should be easy for someone as smart as you then, maybe you can tell us then how do you account for the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic, on what basis do you proceed with the assumption that they will not change, and how is it possible to know anything for certain according to YOUR worldview?

    Maybe not

    Did you cut and paste that? I'm not smart, I'm just an average guy but I can see that the whole routine is just to ask a whole pile of questions and fill in the blanks with "God did it!"
    Anyway-
    To put it simply, the laws of logic are a description of reality and how it works.
    If reality was found to be different then new laws describing this would be created. Like when Newtown's laws didn't work on really big things or really little things.

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  78. TruthSeeker if you're interested in why TAG/Calvinist/Van Tillian/Presupp whatever-name-they-veil-it-as-next argument fails you need to ignore the attacks and look at the defense:

    1. It falls victim to reductio ad absurdem.
    2. It ignores logic as a product of modern probability.
    3. It looks for certainty where there is none.
    4. It refers to a philosophically incoherent concept.
    5. It is not the simplest solution to the answer (Occam's Razor)

    I'm interested, where do you see merit in TAG?

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  79. Chris,

    Did you cut and paste that?

    Yes (My genius is not to that level...yet.)

    I'm not smart, I'm just an average guy but I can see that the whole routine is just to ask a whole pile of questions and fill in the blanks with "God did it!"

    Fine, let me simplify it then.

    Is there such a thing as laws of logic?

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  80. Dan +†+ said...

    Is there such a thing as laws of logic?

    ----
    Dan, yes there are laws of different kinds of logic. But what logic are you referring to? Which set of laws? For First-order logic, first-order predicate logic, second-order predicate logic, modal logic, fuzzy logic? Which one? Logic is not a monolithic entity, and there is no one set of 'laws' for all of logic. Not all logical systems even require axioms.

    And after you pick a set, let's see you account for it besides giving the standard vacuous explanation that it comes from your God's nature. That explains nothing.

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  81. Fine, let me simplify it then.

    Is there such a thing as laws of logic?


    Anyway-
    To put it simply, the laws of logic are a description of reality and how it works.

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  83. Chris,

    Are there fundamental logical rules? Is there such a thing as law of identity, law of noncontradiction, and law of excluded middle?

    ReplyDelete
  84. @Dan

    Are there fundamental logical rules? Is there such a thing as law of identity, law of noncontradiction, and law of excluded middle?

    There are in some logical systems, not in others. That's part of the problem.

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  85. Tyro,

    When asked: Are there fundamental logical rules?

    You reply There are in some logical systems, not in others.

    Can you explain this. I don't understand. In natural language are there fundamental logical rules we follow in word, thought, idea, argument, account, reason, and principle?

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  86. Truthseeker wrote to me I do not personally know Sye but I do see merit in TAG. Please point out one of these "antics" that have labeled him as dishonest so I can decide for myself if that is the case.

    Hi Truthseeker. I'm not necessarily against TAG, though I'll admit I'm generally skeptical. What makes Sye dishonest is that he spends most of his time asking questions to lead his opponent in circles. When someone shows his logic to be faulty, he stops responding and reverts to "How can you account for absolute blah blah blah".

    A specific example: Sye claims logic is a reflection of God's nature and when asked for an example of it being absolute, he refers to the law of non-contradiction. He claims it holds no matter when where or how it's applied: "If you're right, you can't be wrong" as an example.

    It was shown that the law of non contradiction doesn't hold on the quantum level (re. quantum mechanics). If you're familiar with the double slit experiment, an electron is fired at two slots A and B. If the physicist tries to detect which slit the electron goes through, the law of contradiction holds; if the electron goes through one slit and not the other, the statement "The electron went through slit A" can not be true if the statement "the electron did not go through slit A"

    If the physicist does not try to detect which slit it goes through, both of the following statements are true simultaneously:

    "the electron went through slit A"

    "the electron did not go through slit A"

    ---

    Truthseeker, this is physical reality. The phenomenon has been well known and accepted as fact for ~80 years. Without it being so, your parents would never have had cathode ray tube televisions; neon signs probably wouldn't exist; the computer we're both typing and reading this thread with wouldn't be possible.

    ---

    When this is pointed out to Sye, he stops responding. He refuses to accept that his law of non contradiction is not absolute. he continues to argue as if it were, despite being shown otherwise.

    This is a small example of his dishonesty.

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  87. Dan,

    Can you explain this. I don't understand. In natural language are there fundamental logical rules we follow in word, thought, idea, argument, account, reason, and principle?

    Hmm...

    I've given examples where Darrin's "fundamental" logical rules don't apply so you can look back for them. In short, I'd say that there are different logical systems just like there are different ways of calculating the path of a rock dropped into a well. Some are simple and easy to work with like counting the seconds and using a quick off-the-cuff calculation but they are very limited. Others are complex and nuanced like using General Relativity and barometric pressure for air resistance. Some can handle uncertainty and approximations or sliding scales like deciding when it's "too dark" and headlights and streetlights should turn on.

    Are there fundamental rules? I don't know. Probably. I'm not sure what they'd be. I haven't studied much philosophy about philosophy :)

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  88. I know this is arguing against my own position but let's see...

    "the electron went through slit A"

    "the electron did not go through slit A"


    A semantic minefield! Does "the electron" "go" anywhere? Do those sentences even make physical sense? Is this like asking what invisible pink unicorns eat for breakfast?

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  89. Hey Truthseeker,

    Ask Whateverman to link you to the posts he is talking about. (I wouldn't take his word for it).

    Cheers,

    Sye

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  90. Wem,

    "the electron went through slit A"

    You are in denial, dare I say a liar, unless you retract this claim :When this is pointed out to Sye, he stops responding.

    Would you like proof that he indeed responded but you blew it off?

    What is fascinating the mere act when the electron is observed then it decided to act differently as if it knows it's being watched. What a smart electron, dare I say intelligent. What a grand design don't you agree? Of course not, because that would be logical.

    Tyro,

    I was asking Chris some questions about the laws of logic. I asked him are there fundamental logical rules? Is there such a thing as law of identity, law of noncontradiction, and law of excluded middle?

    You chimed in: There are in some logical systems, not in others. That's part of the problem.

    When asked to explain you said: I've given examples where Darrin's "fundamental" logical rules don't apply so you can look back for them. ...Are there fundamental rules? I don't know. Probably. I'm not sure what they'd be. I haven't studied much philosophy about philosophy :)

    After the sin around, fine, you don't know? So why did you feel the need to chime in then? Or can you answer if there is such a thing as law of identity, law of noncontradiction, and law of excluded middle?

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  91. In fact Wem,

    I remember you saying this gem: "I'm going to try to listen to all 14 parts (ug) of this Dan, and will comment when I'm finished."

    And didn't return and we were teasing that you never did.

    Sye even jokingly said to you: It's been 5 days. Surely in that time you could have come up with your conclusion that Dr. Stein was unprepared. :-D

    So when this is pointed out by Sye, Wem stops responding. Wem, you hypocrite!

    I love you...change.

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  92. Tyro,

    I meant to say After the spin around, fine, you don't know?

    Instead, in a Freudian manner, I said "After the sin around, fine, you don't know?"

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  93. Dan said: Chris,
    Are there fundamental logical rules? Is there such a thing as law of identity, law of noncontradiction, and law of excluded middle?


    I said the routine was just a whole pile of questions without statements and you respond by asking questions without making any statements.
    Thanks.

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  94. Chris,

    I posed some questions and you respond by making statements about my questioning?

    You do understand the purpose of questions right?

    It's linguistic expression used to make a request for information, to interview, to interrogate even. So if you don't want questions to be asked of you, how can I gather information on your viewpoints.

    Oops that was a question also. Sorry I can only use the tools that I have.

    Do you know telepathic communication or some other form of communication? Is your household a form of statements.

    Woman, I'm hungry

    Me too dear

    Fix something

    Yes dear...

    You don't believe in questions fine, what other form of "linguistic expression" would you like to use besides questions? Oops that was a question, you sure make things hard.

    I don't think I want to play by your rules (I like this statement thing, thanks)

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  95. Chris,

    I posed some questions and you respond by making statements about my questioning?

    You do understand the purpose of questions right?

    It's linguistic expression used to make a request for information, to interview, to interrogate even. So if you don't want questions to be asked of you, how can I gather information on your viewpoints.


    This is the peanut gallery for Sye/Darrin's TAG thread. I know the entire point of TAG is ask questions until something is unknown and then to posit God as the basis. It's a God of the gaps/argument from ignorance thing.
    I have already given you a statement accounting for logic so you know my viewpoint already. If you want to provide a statement giving your view of logic, then have at it. (Not a challenge)

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  96. Dan,

    After the sin around, fine, you don't know? So why did you feel the need to chime in then? Or can you answer if there is such a thing as law of identity, law of noncontradiction, and law of excluded middle?

    Not having an answer is a valid response, don't you think? Since this is about the explanation of fundamental laws of logic, I thought it was a relevant comment that we haven't established that the laws of logic extend beyond the abstract, mathematical environment in which they operate.

    I have a hard time with all of those "laws". Identity is a very fuzzy issue as I've mentioned in other comments here, as is non-contradiction and excluded middle. I agree that, given a strictly defined abstract logical system, those rules apply. I don't think that mapping this abstraction to reality is as simple and straight forward as some may think.

    As a thought experiment, consider yourself as you are right now, reading this comment. Are you the same person as you were two minutes ago, or will be in ten minutes time? How about ten years ago, twenty, or thirty? Can simple true/false statements, excluded middle and the law of identity properly reflect these questions?

    Think of how food is eaten, digested and absorbed. Now draw a sharp line at the molecular level which can say exactly what is a part of you and what is not. No grey areas, just in or out. If you don't think you can even identify yourself, what hope is there for bigger questions?

    Quantum mechanics are also challenging but abstruse and hard to come to grips with intuitively.

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  97. Simple Sye wrote "A person who is suffering from DTs can’t give up his belief that there are snakes on the bed either! Its incorrigible for him, he sees them, but that doesn’t mean that there are snakes on the bed.”

    Actually someone suffering from DT CAN realise that the snakes he sees aren't real. Such a realization won't make the snakes go away but he will realise that the snakes are a delusion. Sort of ruins simple sye's argument doesn't it?

    Oh & Dan
    Just because you have the hots for Sye doesn't make him correct.

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  98. Simple Sye wrote "I wouldn't take his word for it". Are you implying that WEM could be as big a liar as yourself? I don't think that's possible simple sye.

    Oh and are you going to admit you can't answer my question now? Or are you going to pretend you can't read them just like the majority of the times I've whipped your arse?

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  99. Simple Sye holds that it is impossible for someone to be mistaken about something that they are certain that they know.

    So here we go simple simple sye. I am certain that I know that you are a liar, and a brain damaged hypocrite. According to you it must be true because I am certain of my knowledge. Since someone can't makes mistakes when they are certain that they know something then you MUST be a lying, brain damaged hypocrite. Ain't your logic wonderful?

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  100. Oh & I am also certain that I know that presuppositionalism is a load of bullshit. Now according to your logic it MUST be true. Isn't that right simple sye?

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  101. So Dan is it alright to be hypocritical as you have shown yourself to be?

    For example when I copied Sye's method of arguing you condemned my behaviour but praised Sye [whom I was copying]. When I pointed out what you were doing you replied "sye is trying to save souls while you're just a dick."

    Amazing how you can know my motives isn't it Dan?
    Did you learn your ability to read minds from Sye? Or just his ability with hypocrisy?

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  102. Chris,

    Amazing how you can know my motives isn't it Dan?

    No, I am not to attempt to judge your motives and I admit that was a tad harsh. I appologize for that. I guess I felt justified during that heated discussion.

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  103. Tyro,

    Not having an answer is a valid response, don't you think? ...

    I have a hard time with all of those "laws". Identity is a very fuzzy issue as I've mentioned in other comments here, as is non-contradiction and excluded middle. I agree that, given a strictly defined abstract logical system, those rules apply. I don't think that mapping this abstraction to reality is as simple and straight forward as some may think.


    Anyone can state that A is not A, but proving it is a whole different matter. Besides, the very concept of proof suggests a precommittment to the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic, which, as we can see above, you are having a great deal of trouble dealing with.

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  104. Chris,

    Oh & I am also certain that I know that presuppositionalism is a load of bullshit. Now according to your logic it MUST be true. Isn't that right simple sye?

    How do you account for the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic, on what basis do you proceed with the assumption that they will not change, and how is it possible to know anything for certain according to YOUR worldview?

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  105. @Dan,

    Anyone can state that A is not A, but proving it is a whole different matter. Besides, the very concept of proof suggests a precommittment to the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic, which, as we can see above, you are having a great deal of trouble dealing with.

    If you have a point to make, why not do it without the insults and personal digs. It makes people unwilling to take the time to figure out if you have genuine questions or points.


    If you re-read what I've said, I have demonstrated how A and not A can be simultaneously true. If you have any comments or rebuttals, please quote them directly.


    And if you re-read what I've said, "proof" is just a small part of logic. As has been said, proof is for mathematics and alcohol. Most of life deals with induction and description where "proof" is not an issue. Logic is most commonly used to asses changing levels of confidence in a proposition so that statements are often both true and false simultaneously, to varying degrees.


    Within simple modal prepositional logic, yes there are rules but the ones you quote are not fundamental but derived from the definitions of the permissible operations. The fundamental rules are the truth tables for AND, OR, NOT and any other operations you may use (XOR, implies, for all, exists, etc.). Speaking more broadly, what does this simplistic, abstract logic have to do with logic in general or with the universe as a whole? There's more to logic and reason than simple modal prepositional logic.

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  106. Tyro,

    There's more to logic and reason than simple modal prepositional logic.

    Are you certain of this? Again, I will ask how it is possible for you, within your worldview, to know anything with certainty?

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  107. Dan,

    Are you certain of this?

    I've answered this several times so take the time to read it. I'm happy to answer questions about the specifics.

    Again, I will ask how it is possible for you, within your worldview, to know anything with certainty?

    What's this "worldview", I'm talking about simple facts and modelling of reality. If you have trouble understanding what I'm writing, ask for specifics.

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  108. @ Dan

    I asked "Oh & I am also certain that I know that presuppositionalism is a load of bullshit. Now according to your logic it MUST be true. Isn't that right simple sye?"

    You replied "How do you account for the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic, on what basis do you proceed with the assumption that they will not change, and how is it possible to know anything for certain according to YOUR worldview?"

    Thank you for accepting that my reductio has destroyed Sye's argument. If you don't accept that let's tend to my argument first & we'll come back to your questions.

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  109. @ Dan

    I should have added that I'll be more than happy to answer your questions when you've answered mine.

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  110. I said this on my blog but it would be wroth saying again:

    Dr. Paul Davies, a cosmologist at Arizona State University asserted in an article that science, not unlike religion, rested on faith, not in God but in the idea of an orderly universe.

    DENNIS OVERBYE in the New York times wrote "There is in fact a kind of chicken-and-egg problem with the universe and its laws. Which “came” first — the laws or the universe? If the laws of physics are to have any sticking power at all, to be real laws, one could argue, they have to be good anywhere and at any time, including the Big Bang, the putative Creation. Which gives them a kind of transcendent status outside of space and time."

    A quote from Einstein “The most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible.”

    AIG said: When explaining their beliefs, Christians often feel they must first prove the Bible or prove the existence of God. This approach reveals that they do not yet understand the Bible’s approach, known as presuppositional apologetics.

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  111. Anyone can state that A is not A, but proving it is a whole different matter.

    Okay, simple example: the statement "the movement of objects in a gravitational field follow Newton's theory of gravity" is both true and not true to different degrees. Your so-called invariant, abstract, universal laws are neither invariant nor universal except within a rigidly defined abstract, mathematical world. In the real world, they fail.


    As for your quote mining, skip it. We don't care. If you have an argument, present it yourself.

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  112. @ Dan

    Are you going to answer my questions Dan? If you can't answer my question just admit it Dan.

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  113. I agree with what scmike said in a past argument:

    While the Bible is my ultimate authority, it is not the only means by which God has revealed Himself to us. It is through God's collective natural and special revelation that I know for certain my senses are reliable and can account for absolute, immaterial, universal laws of logic and reason.

    In contrast, you are stuck in an absurd worldview where you claim to sense the validity of your senses and reason the validity of your reasoning and are certain that we can't know things for certain.

    In addition to this, you (may) deny the existence of absolute laws of logic and reason because you can't account for them, yet you do not live consistently with any of these professed beliefs and dodge the questions that would expose these obvious inconsistencies.

    It is apparent that you are continuing to cling to your worldview in a vain attempt to avoid accountability to the God of the Bible by willfully suppressing the Truth He has revealed to us all. My friend, this is extremely foolish and dangerous.

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  114. Next part of the quote Dan gave:
    "On the other hand, many thinkers — all the way back to Augustine — suspect that space and time, being attributes of this existence, came into being along with the universe — in the Big Bang, in modern vernacular. So why not the laws themselves? "

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  115. Gah, your god's revelation has to processed with your senses and your brain. Unless you want to claim you don't use your brain and the revelation is senseless. :-)

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  116. Dan, without any specifics or details this comes across as preaching & chest thumping. It certainly doesn't deal with the many specifics which have been presented.

    In contrast, you are stuck in an absurd worldview where you claim to sense the validity of your senses and reason the validity of your reasoning and are certain that we can't know things for certain.

    No doubt we can know some things for certain but there are many we can't. Why is this "absurd"? It's reality, like it or not.

    In addition to this, you (may) deny the existence of absolute laws of logic and reason because you can't account for them, yet you do not live consistently with any of these professed beliefs and dodge the questions that would expose these obvious inconsistencies.

    I haven't dodged any questions and I don't see others dodging either, merely trying to engage in a dialogue. That requires both parties to participate and I'm inclined to agree that you aren't holding up your end.

    But I'm still listening so what are my inconsistencies? You say I deny the existence of absolute laws - have you read any of my numerous examples demonstrating that these "laws" are not absolute? It's not a denial, it's acknowledging reality. Denial is when one such as yourself are presented with counter examples and refuse to change their views or consider new evidence.

    As for how I live, this is just ridiculous. We both live in a world of induction where proof is impossible and the absolute "laws" of logic you cite don't apply. Are you blind to this or just denying it?

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  117. Tyro,

    But I'm still listening so what are my inconsistencies?

    OK lets look at one:

    You say I deny the existence of absolute laws - have you read any of my numerous examples demonstrating that these "laws" are not absolute?

    So it's absolutely true that absolute laws are not absolute?

    If you are not absolutely sure then is it possible that absolute Laws exist?

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  118. Word games can be fun.
    "This statement is a lie"

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  119. @ dan

    You wrote "It is through God's collective natural and special revelation that I know for certain my senses are reliable..."

    You do realise that Sye has asserted that those who have special revelations belong in a mental hospital don't you? Maybe you'd better rethink that part of your argument.

    You then wrote "In contrast, you are stuck in an absurd worldview where you claim to sense the validity of your senses and reason the validity of your reasoning and are certain that we can't know things for certain."

    When have I ever asserted any of these things? I have asserted that we can obtain objective but tentative knowledge. That's nothing like the drivel you've asserted here.

    You then write "In addition to this, you (may) deny the existence of absolute laws of logic and reason because you can't account for them,..."

    You haven't shown that there are absolute rules of logic. In fact some of the rules of logic that Sye claims are absolute are pretty easy to bring into question.

    You finally added "...yet you do not live consistently with any of these professed beliefs and dodge the questions that would expose these obvious inconsistencies."

    Ah irony thy name is Dan. You do realise that you haven't answered any of my questions Dan. Isn't that dodging my questions Dan? Aren't such dodged questions exposing the inconsistencies of your argument?

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  120. @ dan

    You wrote "So it's absolutely true that absolute laws are not absolute?"

    No it is OBJECTIVELY true that such laws are unknowable.

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  121. To Chris:
    You do realise that Sye has asserted that those who have special revelations belong in a mental hospital don't you? Maybe you'd better rethink that part of your argument.

    He implied it:
    Sye: "I’d go to the local mental hospital." from the "Evolution(ists) gets OWNED!!!" comments on "Debunking Atheists"

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  122. @ Dan

    For example Chris Mackey has already shown that the rule of non-contradiction is NOT invariable, nor is it universal.

    To give the the example [first given by Epimenides] again:
    "What I am now saying is a lie."
    If it is true (A) then it's false (not A) but if it's false (not A) then its true (A). So is the sentence true (A) or false (not A)?

    Not to mention the sorrites paradox.

    Both show that the principle of non-contradiction has limits so it can't be either universal nor invariable.

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  124. @ Chris Mackey

    You wrote that Sye had merely implied that those who have special revelation belong in a mental hospital. You are correct sir.

    However after sye made the infamous statement he was questioned as to its meaning. The proposition was put forward that by his statement Sye had asserted that special revelations was more properly the domain of those in a mental hospital. Sye did not deny such an interpretation. Now since silence indicates consent then we may assert that such an interpretation was what Sye meant.

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  125. @ Chris Mackey

    You took your quote from "Debunking Atheists"?

    I was thinking of the time when Sye made this assertion at Stephen Law's blog.

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  127. Chris,

    No it is OBJECTIVELY true that such laws are unknowable.

    OBJECTIVELY? OK so an unbiased mental attitude that requires internal auditors to perform engagements in such a manner that they have an honest belief in their work

    How do you account for the internal auditors that you rely on? How do you account for the honest beliefs you hold?

    How can you be certain of such a thing as OBJECTIVE truths?

    For example Chris Mackey has already shown that the rule of non-contradiction is NOT invariable, nor is it universal...Both show that the principle of non-contradiction has limits so it can't be either universal nor invariable.

    Thanks for showing that the rule of non-contradiction is invariable, and is universal since contradictions are allowed.

    Like Sye posed "Denying logic, includes denying the law of non-contradiction. If the law of non-contradiction does not necessarily apply, then by denying logic, you are actually affirming logic, since contradictions are allowed."

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  128. @ Dan

    You wrote "OBJECTIVELY? OK so an unbiased mental attitude that requires internal auditors to perform engagements in such a manner that they have an honest belief in their work.

    I don't know where you are getting such grabage from. I need no such internal orditors. Falsification works just fine thanks.

    You then wrote "How do you account for the internal auditors that you rely on? How do you account for the honest beliefs you hold?"

    I don't need to account for internal auditors [see above]. Really where are you getting such rubbish from? How do I account for my honest beliefs? In many ways but we were speaking about knowledge which consists of more than beliefs.

    You then ask "How can you be certain of such a thing as OBJECTIVE truths?"

    Through falsification.

    You then wierdly add "Thanks for showing that the rule of non-contradiction is invariable, and is universal since contradictions are allowed.

    Like Sye posed "Denying logic, includes denying the law of non-contradiction. If the law of non-contradiction does not necessarily apply, then by denying logic, you are actually affirming logic, since contradictions are allowed."

    First the PRINCIPLE of non-contradiction is not the whole of logic & I am merely denying that such a principle is absolute. It is objective but has limits - the paradoxs mentioned are some of them.

    So I am NOT denying logic & you are Sye are just foolishly wrong, aren't you?

    Now my turn to ask a question. How do you explain the Epimenides paradox by the law of non-contradiction? Please don't answer my question with another question. Such red herrings will merely highlight that you don't know the answer & are too dishonest to admit it.

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  130. @Dan,

    So it's absolutely true that absolute laws are not absolute?

    If you are not absolutely sure then is it possible that absolute Laws exist?


    I gave several counter-examples where the laws do not apply so yes, I am sure that the laws you cite are not absolute.

    If you wish to argue that the existence of absolute logical laws entails a God, then you'll need to describe those laws first. The possibility of absolute logical laws doesn't help your case I'm afraid.

    Like Sye posed "Denying logic, includes denying the law of non-contradiction. If the law of non-contradiction does not necessarily apply, then by denying logic, you are actually affirming logic, since contradictions are allowed."

    Again you don't understand context.

    When dealing with simple, binary, true/false propositions, modal prepositional logic is suitable and non-contradiction is valid. Demonstrating that it applies in one situation does not mean it applies in all situations. I've given several examples where it does not apply and if you had some understanding of logic, you'd see that any universal statement can be falsified through a single counter-example. Illustrating cases where it does apply doesn't help your case, you need to attack the counter-examples and demonstrate that your laws really are absolute and universal. So far, I don't see where you've bothered to try that.

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  131. @Chris

    Is that why you behave the way you do? Or did you just learn dishonesty from Sye

    We can all see that Dan has acted like a border-line troll but when you start swapping insults and hurling accusations instead of dealing with the few crumbs of an argument then it looks bad for you and for those of us who agree with you. If you can relax, everyone who reads this will see you winning, lose your cool and he'll gladly play the martyr.

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  132. @ Dan

    In support of Tyro's contention need I explain the obvious? If a statement is universally true then it is true in all times & in all places. If the statement is not true in one place then it cannot be universally true.

    To put it in a logical form
    p1: Statement A is universally true.
    p2: Satement A is found not to be true in situation C
    Conclusion: Since it is claimed that statement A is universally true & since an exception to statement A has been found then it cannot be the case that statement A is universally true.

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  133. @ Tyro

    Point taken. Thank you. My apologies Dan. I did let my temper get the better of me.

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  134. Chris,

    Really where are you getting such rubbish from?

    I have no clue, I was trying to skate on my own, with arms flailing of course.

    Speaking of paradox, you spelled wierdly weirdly. :)

    First the PRINCIPLE of non-contradiction is not the whole of logic & I am merely denying that such a principle is absolute Great thanks for affirming it is absolute then. :)

    How do you explain the Epimenides paradox by the law of non-contradiction?

    All Cretans are liars said by a liar. If it is true it must be false.

    Well this is a lie also, so what is the problem. Saying that "All Cretans are liars" is an absolute statement and in your worldview you cannot account for such absolutes. So it is a lie and thus rendering the statement true. Hmm, so now you agree that there are indeed absolutes?

    Didn't you even say "I am merely denying that such a principle is absolute" earlier?

    Speaking of evolution, how do you get around change? "Heraclitus pointed out that, for a thing to change, it must turn into something else, and then asked how a thing could be something other than itself? If A changes, it turns into not A, thus violating logic laws one and two. Then logically there can be no change whatsoever, because change negates all three laws. I.e., either change does not exist or it is totally illogical."

    So now I am reading about the fourth law of logic, but my brain is about to explode doing so, please be patient.

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  136. @ Dan

    You wrote "Great thanks for affirming it is absolute then. :).

    Objectively incorrect dan. I can condemn illogic as something which is objectively false. It doesn't have to be absolutely false to be shown to be objectively false in this instance.

    I then asked "How do you explain the Epimenides paradox by the law of non-contradiction?"

    You responded "All Cretans are liars said by a liar. If it is true it must be false.

    Well this is a lie also, so what is the problem. Saying that "All Cretans are liars" is an absolute statement and in your worldview you cannot account for such absolutes. So it is a lie and thus rendering the statement true. Hmm, so now you agree that there are indeed absolutes?"

    Incorrect. The statement actually says that all cretans are liars & they even admit this. That is a paradox. If its false then its true but if its false then its true. How do solve paradoxes? Through the use of fuzzy logic not aristotelian logic. But fuzzy logic admits of non-absolute but objective knowledge.

    Objective knowledge is not relative knowledge. I think you are getting the two confused.

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  137. @ dan

    I don't know if you addressed this question to me but I'm going to attempt an answer anyway.

    You wrote "Speaking of evolution, how do you get around change? "Heraclitus pointed out that, for a thing to change, it must turn into something else, and then asked how a thing could be something other than itself? If A changes, it turns into not A, thus violating logic laws one and two. Then logically there can be no change whatsoever, because change negates all three laws. I.e., either change does not exist or it is totally illogical."

    There are various ways of handling this.
    Aristotle explained change by pointing out the distinction between actuality & potentiality.
    E.g. To declare that oil is flamable is to say that the potential for it to burn is present within it, but it needs something [a match for instance] to make this potentiality actual.

    How does that apply to evolution? Well every species has the potential for change. Evolution through changes in the environment & natural selection makes the species potential for change actual.

    I'm surprised that you would side with heraclitus because if his argument was correct then people do not age either [after all aging is merely individual change].

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  138. Sorry my second last post should of course have read if the paradox is false then it's true but if it's true then it's false.

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  139. @ Dan

    You wrote ""All Cretans are liars said by a liar. If it is true it must be false.
    Well this is a lie also, so what is the problem?"

    I think you don't understand the paradox. Allow me to explain. First, as I pointed out earlier the correct rendering of the paradox is cretans are liars & even they admit this.

    Now if cretans are liars then it follows that they were lying when they said that they were liars. But that would mean that cretans really tell the truth. So they must have been telling the truth when they said that they were liars. Which would mean that they really are liars, which would mean that.... And round & round we go. Hence the statement that if such a paradox is true then it is false but if it is false then it is true.

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  141. OK, I admit I still am shaky on the ice. That is why, for now, I rely on brilliant minds (good skaters).

    Dr. Greg Bahnsen (and the Bible) sure worded it nicely:

    Because of your rejection of God's revealed truth, you have "become vain in your reasonings" (Rom. 1:21). By means of your foolish perspective you end up "opposing yourself" (2 Tim. 2:25). You follow a conception of knowledge which does not deserve the name (1 Tim. 6:20). Your philosophy and presuppositions rob you of knowledge (Col. 2:3, 8), leaving you in ignorance (Eph. 4:17-18; Acts 17:23). I am here to cast down your reasonings (2 Cor. 10:5) and to challenge you in the spirit of Paul: "Where is the wise? Where is the disputer of this world? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?" (1 Cor. 1:20).

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  142. Dan,

    Two can play the game of quoting Christians, except unlike you taking snippets out of context, let me quote at length. This is Augustine:

    Now, it is a disgraceful and dangerous thing for an infidel to hear a Christian, presumably giving the meaning of Holy Scripture, talking nonsense on these topics; and we should take all means to prevent such an embarrassing situation, in which people show up vast ignorance in a Christian and laugh it to scorn. The shame is not so much that an ignorant individual is derided, but that people outside the household of the faith think our sacred writers held such opinions, and, to the great loss of those for whose salvation we toil, the writers of our Scripture are criticized and rejected as unlearned men.... Reckless and incompetent expounders of Holy Scripture bring untold trouble and sorrow on their wiser brethren when they are caught in one of their mischievous false opinions and are taken to task by these who are not bound by the authority of our sacred books. For then, to defend their utterly foolish and obviously untrue statements, they will try to call upon Holy Scripture for proof and even recite from memory many passages which they think support their position, although they understand neither what they say nor the things about which they make assertion.


    If you don't care to follow my advice, follow his. If you don't understand something then say so and spend the time to learn. Making wild claims that you don't understand and then falling back on out-of-context bible quotes is as transparent as it is unappealing.

    For a start, instead of blasting out these disconnected questions, why don't you tell us why you think that there are absolute, universal logical laws and what they are, then tell us why you think this requires a god.

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  143. @ Dan

    So basically you seem to be saying that you have to be correct because you agree with bahnsen & Bahnsen says that anyone who disagrees with him is wrong. How nice for you. But that's not an argument. Nor even an assertion. That's merely an expression of egoism. I.e. Bahnsen is always right & anyone who disagrees with him is stupid. The scripture quotes are just to disguise the ego display.

    Tell me Dan if a kid said something like that would you think "good argument" or whould you think that was just a display of pure ego?

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  144. Chris,

    I posted something for everyone on Worldviews in Conflict, presented by Dr. Greg L. Bahnsen.

    Shameless plug I know, but does that appear to be an ego thing on my part or concern for you and your soul?

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  145. @ Dan
    Here's something else to consider. I have a book. Let's call it the book of Chris. The book of Chris is never wrong. How do I know? because the book of Chris says so. The book of chris also says that those who don't follow the book of Chris are dumb.

    Would you be impressed? Of course not! Then why do you think quoting a book that neither I nor Tyro believe in will make any impression whatever?

    First show that there is a God. Second show that such a God can & does communicate with humanity. Third show that God has done so through the bible. Fourth show that the bible faithfully records such revelations. Do that & I will be impressed with any scripture readings you care to give.

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  146. @ Dan

    You wrote "...does that appear to be an ego thing on my part or concern for you and your soul?"

    It doesn't have to be an either/or situation Dan. If all you are saying is "either I'm right or I am right & you are both stupid for not seeing it & instantly converting" then I would argue that exhibits traits of both.

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  147. Dan,

    Shameless plug I know, but does that appear to be an ego thing on my part or concern for you and your soul?

    It looks more like a shameless attempt to deflect or change the subject. If we have questions or issues, are you capable of responding or will you just direct us to even more unrelated resources? Do you even understand the quotes & videos that you are posting?

    If you have any points to make, please do so here and in your own words. Bahnsen isn't here to respond.

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  148. Vagon,

    You said:

    "Tell me what the difference is between "impossibility of the contrary" and axiomatic foundation."

    One(axiomatic foundtion)claims to *prove itself* as a foundation, while the other(impossibility of the contrary)claims to proves itself by showing that without it(whatever the claim may be)the result would be futility.

    In the example that I used from Darrin below:

    "we can't dismiss the Law of Identity, since without it, we couldn't talk about *any* world (including the actual one)."

    He is using a form of an impossibility of the contrary type of argument. This is shown by him saying that "without it, we couldn't talk about *any* world (including the actual one)." This is very similar to the TAG argument.

    Now you never did answer the question, what is wrong with impossibility of the contrary types of arguments?

    Also, can you please tell me how to write in italics, I'm new to this blog thing?

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  149. Chris,

    I have a book. Let's call it the book of Chris...

    Are you claiming the comparability of your book to the Bible?

    If so what claims and evidence does it show in comparison?

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  151. @ Dan

    Bahnsen talks about antagonism to the christian faith. Someone who holds a dissenting view is not necessarily antagonistic. He goes on to describe any dissenting views as hostile. Rubbish!

    He then says that you shouldn't approach any question in a neutral manner since "they [universities] aren't & you shouldn't be." I've been through universities Dan. I have been given top marks arguing for the existence of god by professors who were atheists. I've heard professors from christian universities being invited to give lectures about the arguments for God because an agnostic professor didn't believe he could do them justice.

    That is called education Dan.

    What Bahnsen is talking about is called indoctrination & propaganda & he just excuses it by saying "hey everyone does it."

    Sorry Dan but that ceased being a credible excuse when I was eight.

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  152. Also, can you please tell me how to write in italics, I'm new to this blog thing?

    Any sentence that you want to be in italics have to be wrapped with the italics tags. Add a <i> at the start and </i> at the end.

    This is <i>italics</i> appears as:
    This is italics

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  153. @ dan

    You wrote "Are you claiming the comparability of your book to the Bible?
    If so what claims and evidence does it show in comparison?"

    But Dan you haven't presented any evidence for the bible. All you've given is a silly argument that goes "if you can't given the basis for your ability to reason then the christian God did it."

    Sorry but that would have got me an "F" at Uni. Now if you want to produce some actual arguments in support of the bible rather than keeping on directing us offsite I'm more than happy to consider your arguments.

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  154. @ Dan

    Let me ask you this. Would you lie for your faith if it meant winning a soul for God? How about telling a half-truth?

    If you answered yes then how can we trust anything you tell us about your faith dan?

    If you answer no then why do you agree with bahnsen? Bahnsen is justifying propaganda [which is merely lies & half-truths] by declaring everyone does it. Well lots of people tell lies to get what they want so that must excuse you telling lies as well. If it doesn't then it doesn't excuse the use of propaganda by Bahnsen.

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  155. Chris,

    You ask such questions and then misrepresented Dr. Bahnsen completely?

    Dr. Bahnsen calls you a hypocrite evidenced by you last comment.

    Dr. Bahnsen is backing everything he says Scripturally/Biblically, logically, and with reason.

    You cannot escape his arguments unless you want to abandon honesty. I wish I had 1% of that man's scholar but hey, "that is called education." Thanks for your continued patience.

    Sorry but that would have got me an "F" at Uni.

    UNI? Now that explains a great deal, thanks. :7)

    Look, at least the Bible, Dr. Bahnsen, Sye, and even I can give answers, for the uniformity of nature, laws of logic, moral absolutes, how should one live, why we are here and a myriad of crucial life-questions that a worldview should be able to answer adequately.

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  156. Chris,

    I forgot to add that you merely have an antithetical worldview.

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  157. UNI? Now that explains a great deal, thanks. :7)

    You act like going to Uni is a bad thing.

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  158. Chris,

    D-UNI? Now that explains a great deal, thanks. :7)

    C-You act like going to Uni is a bad thing.

    So, it's not?

    No, I am sure it's a fine secular university, adored by the secular government and secular community that embraces it, graduating secular students to be productive in this secular society. Money well spent?

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  159. I'm the other Chris. Chris Mackey. The uni I live near has many Christian groups... but no atheist group.

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  160. Chris Mackey,


    CM-but no atheist group.

    Who are you trying to convince, me or you?

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  161. Uni is short for university. It's like "college".
    Primary school, secondary school, university.

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  162. In one of my classes at school, there were four different "Chris"s....

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  163. Going to Uni to me means:

    University of Northern Iowa

    Going to a Uni means any University

    Maybe I was mistaken about Chris going to UNI but my comments still stand about secular Universities.

    Good tree will bear good fruit.

    "The American university has embraced a thorough secularism that makes it increasingly marginal in a society that is characterized by high levels of religious belief. The very secularization that was supposed to be a liberating influence has resulted in the university's failure to provide leadership in political, cultural, social, and even scientific arenas." (The Decline of the Secular University by C. John Sommerville)

    Let's hope that either continues and the "Uni's" fail miserably or changes for the better. Brilliant work by Sommerville, btw.

    Even the big bad universities cannot win against God. Your fighting is futile. Submit!

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  164. Funny because "Islam" means "Submit, submission"

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  165. To get back to TAG, here's an interesting comment from S.Law's blog
    David B. Ellis said...

    Sye: I presuppose that God exists and that internally contradictory propositions could be true if he didn't.

    Practically Anyone Else: I presuppose (due to being self-evident) that internally contradictory propositions can't be true under any circumstances---including the nonexistence of any deities.

    The first position presupposes that two things exist. God and laws of logic. Moreover it assumes a necessary connection between the two which entails an absurdity: that if Sye is wrong and God doesn't exist that internally contradictory propositions can be true.

    The second position presupposes one less thing and entails no absurd conclusions.

    Obviously the second is the simpler of the two.
    February 27, 2009 2:47 PM

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  166. Dan,

    Look, at least the Bible, Dr. Bahnsen, Sye, and even I can give answers, for the uniformity of nature, laws of logic, moral absolutes, how should one live, why we are here and a myriad of crucial life-questions that a worldview should be able to answer adequately.

    I'm sure that Dr Bahnsen appears to give reasonable, logical-sounding answers but how do you know if they're actually logical if you can't defend them yourself?

    Further, has it ever occurred to you that in arguing here, we're using logic yet we aren't using these so-called "fundamental" laws you say are so vital? Doesn't this bother you, just a little bit? How is it that the reasoning we use to discuss these issues bears so little resemblance to the "absolute, universal logical laws" discussed in TAG?

    When you can answer that, then everyone here will sit up straight and pay close attention when you speak.

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  167. Chris Mackey's quote is interesting, worth re-reading.

    It reminds me of the discussion about morality. Is God "good" because he follows a higher morality or is he good because morals are defined by his actions, in which case rape or murder would be "good" and we'd have no way to know otherwise.

    So does the theist arguing for TAG believe that the universe God apparently created follows a higher logic external to God in which case we don't need God to explain logic, or is logic arbitrarily created by God and it could potentially follow any laws, in which case what are these other potential laws?

    It seems that saying "God" doesn't help explain anything in the first case and it makes matters considerably worse in the second.

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  168. @ Dan

    You wrote "You ask such questions and then misrepresented Dr. Bahnsen completely?"

    Actually I didn't misrepresent anything Dan. I can quote Bahnson exactly if you'd like. He is talking about indoctrination & alleging that everyone daoes it. Everyone doesn't do it so Bahnson lied.

    Then you wrote "Dr. Bahnsen calls you a hypocrite evidenced by you last comment."

    Actually Bahnson doesn't call me anything because he doesn't even know that I exist. But even if he did why would I care what a liar says about me Dan?

    You then add "Dr. Bahnsen is backing everything he says Scripturally/Biblically, {His own interpretation of scripture. We've already seen how he quote mines the bible taking texts out of context].

    You then add "You cannot escape his arguments unless you want to abandon honesty".
    So you're saying either he's right or he's right. Way to go Dan. That's showing me that there's no ego involved. :-)

    You then added "Look, at least the Bible, Dr. Bahnsen, Sye, and even I can give answers, for the uniformity of nature, laws of logic, moral absolutes, how should one live, why we are here and a myriad of crucial life-questions that a worldview should be able to answer adequately".

    Perhaps but are they the correct answers Dan. Your answers may be totally compelling and agree with each other & yet be wrong.

    Ever heard of Ptolomaic astronomy? Ptolomy put forward a system which explained how the Earth was the centre of the universe. His system hung together nicely. It was a beautiful elegant system...and it was totally wrong. Just like presuppositionalism.

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  169. @ Dan

    Another thing to think about. Your worldview doesn't explain everything. It doesn't explain the paradoxes I've shown. It doesn't explain why I can destroy your argument through a reductio. So what are we to do Dan? Just ignore the things that your system can't answer? Or do we question the correctness of the worldview that finds these things unanswerable?

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  170. @ Dan

    Allow me to highlight some thoughts by your great hero sommerville.
    Source : http://www.orthodoxytoday.org/articles2/SommervilleSecularism.php

    Sommerville wrote "The Supreme Court recognized this in stipulating that the teaching of religion should be "part of a secular program of education." Thus it would tend to undermine the claims of any particular religion, ..."

    So basically Sommerville is advocating indoctrination. Hence his emphasis on the Christian faith as opposed to any other. Sorry Dan but I'm not interested in propaganda & thought control.

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  171. @ dan

    You never did answer my question. Would you tell lies for God? Yes or no.

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  172. @ dan
    Oh before I forget Ptolomy's astronomy was also supported by many, many quotes from scripture as well Dan. So Ptolomy's astronomy was supported by reason, & scripture, & the worldview which incorporated his astronomy could provide "answers, for the uniformity of nature, laws of logic, moral absolutes, how should one live, why we are here and a myriad of crucial life-questions that a worldview should be able to answer adequately."

    It all hung together very well. And it was totally wrong wasn't it Dan? The Earth isn't the centre of the universe is it Dan?

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  173. @ Dan

    You also wrote that my "worldview" was antithetical.

    Antithetical may be defined as "directly opposed or contrasted; opposite."

    Nope. Sorry Dan. I am a zoroastrian remember? I believe in the existence of a diety. I believe in an objective, not absolute, system of morality, I was trained in logic. Just because my system differs from yours does not mean that it is the opposite of yours.

    That's just more of Bahnson's deliberate misrepresentations.

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  174. Vagon,

    I sorry I don't know what you mean when you say:

    "ignore the attacks and look at the defense"

    Are you saying to look at the defense against TAG and ignore the attacks that it brings forth?

    You say that TAG:

    "falls victim to reductio ad absurdem."

    If that's the conclusion that you draw I really don't think you understand the argument in it's totality. TAG does not claim that since you can't account for Logic, morality, science and so forth, therefore God exist. That would be reductio ad absurdem, which again TAG does not claim. If that were the case atheist philosopher Michael Martin in his rebutal(which in my opinion was found wanting)to TAG would have been all over that.

    "It ignores logic as a product of modern probability."

    If the argument is understood properly, it not only addresses it but encompasses it.


    "It looks for certainty where there is none."

    Some theologians would agree with you on this, and some would not. See Dr. R.C. Sproul and Dr. Greg Bahsen go at it in a friendly debate on this very claim. Arguing from TAG I would ask you if one holds to an atheist world view how can you have certainty about anything at all? How can you even be certain that there is no certainty in TAG?

    "It refers to a philosophically incoherent concept."

    That may be the case. Can you please point the way? Because as of yet I havent been show this philosophically incoherent concept.

    "It is not the simplest solution to the answer (Occam's Razor)"

    I would simply disagree with you on this, and say that it is the simplest solution and that is why so many reject it. It's too simple. I would ask you why do you assume Occam's Razor is the way we must look at things? There are many philosophers that disagree with that principle. Have you hear of Anti-Razor? Have you read atheist Richard Dawkins book the "Blind Watchmaker?" In the begining of the book he implies that design seems evident in biological systems and then with arduous effort argues throughout the rest of the book why that is not the case. So much for Occam's razor!

    "I'm interested, where do you see merit in TAG?"

    Are you really interested to see if there is merit in TAG, or just to see where *I* see merit in TAG?

    If you are really interested to see if there is merit in TAG Bahnsen's book "Van Til's Presuppositional Apologics Stated and Defended" will shortly be released. This book was completed before his death but never published. I would recommend him because I believe he was a very astute thinker and explains Van Til in English.

    I find that TAG has merit for several reasons:

    1. It provides the precondition for intelligibility.
    2. It shows that the atheist world view does not comport with reality and that the Christian world view does. This is why it is not a reductio ad absurdem type of argument.
    3. It can an account for logic, morality, and science and our very existance.
    4. It shows that the impossibility of the contrary results in futility.
    5. Once I fully understood the implications of the argument I haven't seen any really good agruments against it that would persuade me otherwise.

    The best argumnet that I have heard against it does not even come from atheists but from Christians even though I disagree with the final outcome.

    To understand more about Transcendental arguments and the problem of induction, you might also be interested in reading Immanuel Kants "CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON".

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  175. Truthseeker, what do you think of Islamic presuppositional thought? It solves all the same problems as the Christin presuppositional but with a true unchanging God.
    There is no god but God.

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  176. Some minutes to slip in a few brief responses:

    >>John Rhue

    As I told all my Christian friends, Islam is not exactly off the map for me, either. I'm going to explore it. What do you think of Shabir Ally? He's one of only three people I've seen best Dr. Craig in a debate (on "What Must We Do to be Saved").

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  177. Tyro,

    Further, has it ever occurred to you that in arguing here, we're using logic yet we aren't using these so-called "fundamental" laws you say are so vital? Doesn't this bother you, just a little bit? How is it that the reasoning we use to discuss these issues bears so little resemblance to the "absolute, universal logical laws" discussed in TAG?

    Look atheists that uses logic and reason without the ability to account for said logic is like if I were to open a business, let's say a restaurant, and I need investor since I am broke so I get a partner to fund my entire business. Now on opening day, in a interview, I say it's my business entirely. That I have no partner and I get all the credit I funded it all myself. That is basically what you all are doing. You are borrowing logic and reason from God himself (accounted) and claim it as your own (cannot account) You are borrowing from God and claiming it as your own.

    In it's simplest analogy you are all hijackers of logic. You are thieves (8th Commandment) and will not give credit to God for even the air you breath let alone the ability to learn or reason or logic. Sad.

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  178. There were schools of logic before Christianity.
    -
    And how do you account for God?

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  179. John Rhue,

    "Truthseeker, what do you think of Islamic presuppositional thought?

    I think that it should be examined internally to see if it fits the bill.

    "It solves all the same problems as the Christin presuppositional but with a true unchanging God."

    Instead of solving problems it seems to create them. Islam teaches that God is unknowable. This alone causes several problems. If God is unknowable that would be at least one thing you would know about Him. The claim that God is unknowable refutes itself. He is also mutable and not unchanging which the Quran itself shows:

    see here

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  180. @ Dan

    You do realise by putting up that analogy you really are digging yourself into a hole. Allow me to explain.

    Let us say that logic really is solely a product of human thought. Then presuppositionalism trying to deny this is like a mafia standoverman demanding a partnership of my business when I've done all the work.

    Evidence is required that:
    1) God exists
    2) That such a god can inspire people.
    3) That through such inspiration God invented logic.

    Presupositionalism does NONE of the above.

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  181. So-called Truthseeker-
    Christian fake 'god' repents and changes mind. If your god can change, how can you been sure of anything? how can you not know your hands will not become camels if your god changes? Unstable. As well as untrue! Bible has been altered. Koran is unchanged.
    One of the names of Allah is UNCHANGING.
    HOW CAN YOU KNOW ANYTHING IF YOUR GOD CHANGES?
    For anything to make sense you need a real unchanging god.
    The Bible has slowly been changed by men. You should submit to God. The One and Only God.
    There is no god but God.

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  182. @ truthseeker

    You wrote that presuppositionalism
    "1. It provides the precondition for intelligibility."

    Incorrect. Presuppositionalism claims to provide the basis for logic. Who says that their claim is correct? Since they NEVER produce any evidence to support such a claim it can be dismissed. I.e. evidence which is produced without any supporting evidence may be dismissed with the same amount of evidence.

    "2. It shows that the atheist world view does not comport with reality..."

    Incorrect. It makes this claim. It produces no evidence in its support except that atheism would not be in agreement with its world view. What if its world view is incorrect? What if both are? The presuppositionalists ansew is...no answer at all.

    Actually truthseeker I provided a reductio. I'll repeat it for your benefit. I assert that you have brain damage. Prove to me that you can think logically. Presuppositionist bullshit will be applied to all answers you give.

    To any answer you give I need merely respond "How do you know such an answer is logical? You are assuming that you can think logically. Try again." :-)

    & Round & round we go. Van Till even admitted that presuppositionalism was circular. He claimed it wasn't visciously circular but I beg to differ.
    Look up the definition and see for yourself:
    http://www.fallacyfiles.org/begquest.html

    The fact is that a logical reply cannot be given to a logical fallacy. One can only logically point out that it is a logical fallacy.

    You then wrote "3. It can an account for logic, morality, and science and our very existance."

    Incorrect. It can make the unsupported claim that it can. What evidence does presuppositionalism produce to support its claim? None whatsoever!

    You then wrote "4. It shows that the impossibility of the contrary results in futility."

    As we've demonstrated here it shows no such thing. You must show why the contrary is impossible. To merely use the phrase like a magic wand is not argument it's merely rhetoric.

    You then wrote " 5. Once I fully understood the implications of the argument I haven't seen any really good agruments against it that would persuade me otherwise."

    Really? Presuppositionalism claims that it can prove that no other religion meets its requirements except christianity. So how much research have you done on Zoroastrianism? Islam? Buddhism? Bahai? Not to mention things like the gnostics & Mythraic faith. And that's just for starters.

    You've just accepted whatever they said & then demand "prove them wrong."

    Sorry truthseeker but you've got the burden of proof round the wrong way. The one who makes the positive assertion has the burden of proof. Just saying we can do A but you can't so we must be true is NOT evidence of the claim.

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  183. @ truthseeker

    You mean a fundie christian decided that Islam isn't as good as Christianity. Well quelle suprise.

    Well if it's good enough for you then I am a zoroastrian. I have decided that christianity isn't as good as Zoroastrianism. You must be convinced as I'm just doing the same thing as your 'expert'. :-)

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  184. @ truthseeker

    Let's examine a few scripture verses shall we?

    Jeremiah 20:7 (New International Version)
    7 O LORD, you deceived [a] me, and I was deceived [b] ; you overpowered me and prevailed.
    I am ridiculed all day long; everyone mocks me."

    Notice a few things. Jeremiah is saying that God lied to him. Really? Yes! Jeremiah declares "O Lord [God], you deceived me,".
    Who deceived him? God did.

    But maybe that's just sour grapes. Maybe Jeremiah told a lie. After all does God ever say that he lied? Funny you should ask that question.
    In Ezekial 14: 9 we read "Ezekiel 14:9 (English Standard Version)
    9And if the prophet is deceived and speaks a word,(A) I, the LORD, have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand against him and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel."

    Who has deceived the prophet? "I, the Lord, have deceived that prophet,"

    Any others? Afraid so.
    1 Kings 22:20-23 (New International Version)
    20 And the LORD said, 'Who will entice Ahab into attacking Ramoth Gilead and going to his death there?'
    "One suggested this, and another that. 21 Finally, a spirit came forward, stood before the LORD and said, 'I will entice him.'

    22 " 'By what means?' the LORD asked.
    " 'I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouths of all his prophets,' he said.
    " 'You will succeed in enticing him,' said the LORD. 'Go and do it.'

    23 "So now the LORD has put a lying spirit in the mouths of all these prophets of yours. The LORD has decreed disaster for you."

    Who put the lying spirit in the mouths of all these prophets? "The LORD has put a lying spirit..."

    But I don't understand. In Psalm 33:4 (English Standard Version)we read
    "4For the word of the LORD is upright, and all his work is done in(A) faithfulness."

    It seems that your God has changed his mind & been deceptive. If, for any reason, your God lied why should we trust Him?

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  185. & if God, at any time changed His mind who's to say He won't change it again?

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  186. @ truthseeker

    You wrote "Islam teaches that God is unknowable. This alone causes several problems. If God is unknowable that would be at least one thing you would know about Him."

    Bwahahahahahahaha...sorry, sorry I'm composed now. You're not serious are you? All that is saying is that people will forever be ignorant of God. How is that knowledge of God? :-)

    Damn funny joke though. You had me going for a second.

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  187. Chris,

    Relax you seem uptight, don't worry Zoroaster won't change his mind or be deceptive to you, you can trust him he loves you. He explains everythihg. Your arguments are ones that I have never encountered before in my 20 years of being a Christian. Thank you for showing me the error of my ways.

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  188. @ Truthseeker

    Thank you for your reply. I'm glad I could help. I had no idea that you were such a babe in the woods that you'd never realised that presuppositionalism is merely a logical fallacy known as circular reasoning. Oh & let's not forget the lies.

    Van Till declared that every system of thought led to a logical fallacy [since that is all fallen man is capable of] but that is easily refuted.

    p1. All men are mortal.
    p2. Socrates was a man
    C: Socrates was mortal.

    No circularity involved.

    But let's say, for the sake of argument, that all arguments really are circular. Does that excuse presuppositionalism? Nope!

    Circular arguments are mere wishful thinking unless they can produce support. How do we produce support for a circular argument? Quite easily. We say if & only if A & B are true will I find C & D. Then I go out looking for C & D. If I don't find them my argument is falsified. If I do find them my argument is accepted.

    Science does this all the time. Presuppositionalism cannot do this. Presuppositionalism remains wishful thinking.
    But presuppositionalism is such an incredible boost to the ego & I'm sure you'll agree that's what it's really all about. Not advancing thought or providing any tangible benefit for humanity but producing a huge honkin ego. ;-)

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  189. @ truthseeker

    You aslo wrote "don't worry Zoroaster won't change his mind or be deceptive to you, you can trust him he loves you."

    Quite frankly I have not the slightest idea whether Zoroaster loves me or not. I don't worship Zoroaster, no one in my group does. We worship the God that he preached - Ahura Mazda [translation: The Wise Lord].

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  190. @Dan,

    Look atheists that uses logic and reason without the ability to account for said logic is like if I were to open a business[...]

    Wow, dodging the questions and now tossing up a very poor argument from analogy! I have no problems with analogies if they're used to clarify a difficult to understand argument but you don't appear to have an argument to clarify. How am I supposed to respond? It appears to be purely a personal attack rather than anything which can be discussed.


    I know how hard it must be to climb up on that high horse, but I think you should hop down if you want to chat properly. For a start, I don't have a problem accounting for logic. With the modal prepositional logic you've cited, these laws arise simply from the definition of the operations. That's how all logical systems work - we define the space of allowable values (e.g.: simple true/false or fuzzy values), the operations (e.g.: AND, OR, XOR, NOT, IMPLIES, EXISTS, FOR ALL) and from that every higher-level "law" or operation can be derived.

    It's no more magical than mathematics. How do we know that long division works, or that we need to align decimals when adding, or that we invert fractions when dividing? How do we know that zero times a number always equals zero? These laws aren't magical or created by a god, they're all derived.

    You are borrowing logic and reason from God himself (accounted) and claim it as your own (cannot account) You are borrowing from God and claiming it as your own.

    Sheesh. You don't understand logic and reason yet you have the arrogance to pity those who do. Trust me, your accusations reveal a lot more about you than about me. Come at me with an argument and not analogies and faux pity if you want some impact.

    You are thieves (8th Commandment) and will not give credit to God for even the air you breath let alone the ability to learn or reason or logic. Sad.

    You have really deteriorated, you know. Are you actually interested in this discussion or are you just here to proselytize?

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  191. Chris,

    One can only logically point out that it is a logical fallacy.

    Of course what you fail to realize, is that in order for something to be logically fallacious, there must be absolute laws of logic, by which the fallacy can be determined. Problem is, your worldview cannot account for such laws, so you expose your inconsistency by claiming that a fallacy exists.

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  192. But aren't the laws of logic a human construct?

    And why do they need to be "accounted for" when everyone is already using them. Once you "account for" something, wouldn't you then have to "account for" whatever you use as the explanation?

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  193. "The atheist who wrote the foreword backslid," Comfort said. "I sent him a copy, and a week later he wrote to me and said that he was no longer an atheist."
    http://wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=90743

    Hey, wasn't that Darrin of this web-site?

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  194. ATVLCOnce you "account for" something, wouldn't you then have to "account for" whatever you use as the explanation?

    Like I said: How do you account for God?

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  195. @ Dan

    You wrote "Of course what you fail to realize, is that in order for something to be logically fallacious, there must be absolute laws of logic, by which the fallacy can be determined."

    Incorrect Dan.
    As I have explained, and explained, and explained the rules of logic are OBJECTIVE & TENTATIVE. Did you forget?

    You then added "Problem is, your worldview cannot account for such laws, so you expose your inconsistency by claiming that a fallacy exists."

    I have no world view & I can account for the OBJECTIVE rules of logic just fine as I've already shown you. Really dan do you suffer from memory loss? We went through all this before.

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  196. @ Dan

    By the way you really should think about your posts a bit more. If objective rules of logic exist or absolute laws of logic exist a viciously circular argument is still a logical fallacy. Since presuppositionalism is based upon a logical fallacy then it is wrong in both arguments.

    You've just proved my point! Way to go Dan!

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