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Truth and naturalism...

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posted on Mar, 17 2009 @ 07:38 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
[


To the objective, perhaps; but it may yet be of immense significance to the rock.


But the rock can not say to any other rock that thier way is better if there is no objective standard to measure that by.


I'm afraid you've swum out beyond your depth, lad - a medusa, lured by our treacherous light. My advice to you now is to swim for shallower waters.


your entertaining when you wax poetic like that, but hardly convincing.




posted on Mar, 17 2009 @ 07:53 AM
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Originally posted by hulkbacker
The point is already addressed and refuted. survival insuring actions can be due to false beliefs. Truth is not necessary. if survival is possible without truth, as a naturalist one can't be certian we have surivived with the ability to percieve truth.

So you completely missed the point melatonin and I were making, then. This wasn't it.


Originally posted by hulkbacker
ah, but which private is actually of value? the one that performed the mission.

Certainly, that is what the private would like to think. But to an omnipotent agent, no substance* is intrinsically more valuable than any other substance.


With a God, worth and value can be determined relative to the ultimate objective.

You are wrong. To an omnipotent entity, means and ends must be one and the same. Thus nothing has value to this God of yours except such value as He chooses to attribute to it. In other words, God is in exactly the same position as your straw-man naturalist: comdemned to seek out His own existential value and meaning.

I'm afraid the rest of your post does no more than illustrate that you have failed to grasp what we've been trying to tell you, so I'll stop now. Pouring water on ducks' backs is not my idea of a productive way to pass the time.
 

*Or essence, if you believe it is distinct from substance.



posted on Mar, 17 2009 @ 08:17 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
It's okay. You don't have to explain again. It's not that hard to grasp. It's just that you're wrong, your premises are false and your logic is confused,



where am I inconsistent? In fact it appears that you have agreed with me on all points except you insist on not following that through to the conclusion.


so going back to the beginning and repeating yourself all over again isn't really going to help.


Then answer the questions on my OP and lets start from there. Also, the fact that you continually confuse the point of contention in this thread seems to support my conclusions.


Naturalists have the same things to live for that other people do. Among these things, as I mentioned before, are
Originally posted by Astyanax
self-respect... a sense of duty towards others... natural affection... the warmth of friendship...

and, of course, a whole host of other motivations of this kind. They may be insignificant from a cosmic perspective, they may have no meaning whatsoever in the final reckoning, but what does that matter? The final cosmic reckoning is not my reckoning and neither is it yours. Our final reckoning comes at the end of our lives, when we come to face death and find ourselves either quiet in mind or filled with fear and regret. And in your final reckoning and mine, such things must be accounted very important indeed.


Thank you. You have now spelled out what I've been trying to get across to you this whole time. When I use the phrase "personal fulfillment" I mean the exact same thing as when you use the phrase "finding ourselves quiet in mind" as opposed to "filled with fear and regret".

You have now agreed that from a naturalists perspective
A) There is no univesal objective to which we can measure ourselves
B) We are universally insignificant
C) Our final reckoning comes when we face death and can find ourselves either "quite of mind" (fulfilled) or filled with regret. IOWs we can only measure ourselves by ourselves.

Now, I ask you. If each persons own "goal" is to be "quiet of mind", how can one person say to another that thier method for reaching "quietness of mind" is better than another?
What if helping people doesn't give me "quiteness of mind"? What if raping and killing give me "quiteness of mind"?

Again we go back to the OP. What if I can only achieve "quietness of mind" by believing that my life has some universal significance? Even if thats a lie. The fact that its a lie is irrelevent because it allows me to reach the goal of "quiteness of mind".

Since the goal is "quietness of mind", the value a belief has comes in how effective that belief is in terms of reaching that goal.
The value of the belief does not come in its truthfullness.

Assuming you are a naturalist, do you get "quietness of mind" out of stealing away the "quietness of mind" from other people?
I assume you must beleive that the best way for most of us to achieve "quietness of mind" is through naturalism. And so you spend time working to that end.

But as a theist, I believe that "quietness of mind" is best achieved by trusting and believing in a greater, ultimate objective. It would really be counter productive for you convince me otherwise. As the truth of the matter is irrelevent, (since both of our goals are only "quietness of mind").

The same is not true from my perspective. The final reckoning is different. I have motive for shaking your "quietness of mind" to serve a greater good. The truth of the matter is rather essential. Because there IS an ultimate objective, you actually WILL be measured against it. IF that knowledge upsets your "quietness of mind", thats hardly relevent because thats not the final goal.

naturalism = truth is irrelevent.
christianity = truth is essential.



posted on Mar, 17 2009 @ 08:33 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax

So you completely missed the point melatonin and I were making, then. This wasn't it.


then no other point is relevent to the topic. It is possible for life to exist and function without truth. As a naturalist this destroys any reliability you have in knowing truth.


Certainly, that is what the private would like to think. But to an omnipotent agent, no substance* is intrinsically more valuable than any other substance.


when did I ever claim otherwise? I have stated more than once that my value comes only from God. I have an ultimate source for my value. You have none.


With a God, worth and value can be determined relative to the ultimate objective.

You are wrong. To an omnipotent entity, means and ends must be one and the same.

Thus nothing has value to this God of yours except such value as He chooses to attribute to it


Agreed. If God has a purpose, and uses me in fulfiling that purpose, I have ultimate value BECAUSE he used me.


In other words, God is in exactly the same position as your straw-man naturalist: comdemned to seek out His own existential value and meaning.


And thus the idolatry of the atheist is confirmed. The athiest chooses to usurp God as the ultimate measure of reality and meaning and imbues that quality to himself.


I'm afraid the rest of your post does no more than illustrate that you have failed to grasp what we've been trying to tell you, so I'll stop now. Pouring water on ducks' backs is not my idea of a productive way to pass the time.
*Or essence, if you believe it is distinct from substance.


Thats one way to interperet what has happened here. I'll leave it to the unbiased reader to make that distinction.
I do find it somewhat dubious that you spent such a large amount of time on this thread without so much as directly answering the questions of the OP.

[edit on 17-3-2009 by hulkbacker]

[edit on 17-3-2009 by hulkbacker]



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 03:25 PM
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reply to post by hulkbacker
 



I do find it somewhat dubious that you spent such a large amount of time on this thread without so much as directly answering the questions of the OP.


I'd like a shot at it, but there's a problem...


2 questions. 1) From a naturalistic philosphy, what value does truth have? If there is no God, or no ultimate objective for our personal lives, why is knowing the truth valuable?


Before anyone would be able to answer that question - we would first have to agree on what truth really is. Is there a definition you can provide that everyone would agree with? Or, even if it’s a definition with which no one can agree - is there an description of truth, even if this description is meaningful to you and you alone - that we could use as a working definition? something we could use just for this conversation?

towards the ultimate goal of, if not actually answering your question - maybe even being able to understand your question?

because, your question makes no sense without it - and is impossible to answer the way you’ve asked it

from question 1:

Underthose circumstances, wouldn't believing a lie be more valuable than knowing the truth?


again, the answer you’re looking for is only really possible if we know what you mean by truth - are you the keeper of the truth?

to me, it sounds as if you think that some people are too stupid too know that they aren’t really happy - even if they’re pretty sure they are - it makes me want to ask - who get’s to decide what happiness is - and who gets to decide who deserves to be happy?


IF the answer to the last few question is "yes" then wouldn't a theist who was fulfilled and made joyful in thier thiesm actually be better off than a naturalist that who is left empty regardless of who is actually "right" or "wrong".


my answer to this would be a question - if false views can lead to false happiness - what does it matter? Theist, Atheist, Agnostic - how does it matter?

there are no false views - only views

unless (unless...) we all agree that there is an ultimate truth

but, even if you can get all people to agree that there is such a thing as an absolute when it comes to truth - there’s still going to be disagreement as to what that one truth is

I get the feeling that you believe some people know the truth - and some don’t

fair enough - we all feel that way at times

as an agnostic (yes, it’s still true....) I’m clearly a loser no matter who’s looking - I’m either a cowardly believer or a gutless atheist - I can never remember which :-)

but, whichever - I have some questions for you:

1st question: who among us is capable of recognizing the truth on our own?

2nd question: If learning what truth is is something we CAN learn on our own, why would we trust a version of the truth that comes from someone else?

3rd question: If learning what is truth is NOT something a person can learn on their own, how would anyone know who really knows the truth?

4th question: can there be more than one truth?

5th question: is there really any reason why each of us shouldn’t be allowed to come to the truth in our own way and our own time - and ultimately decide for ourselves what the truth really is?

if the answer to question number 5 is: Yes there is a reason. There is only one truth, I know it - we know it - and you are somehow less for not knowing it

then I really have to say, that bothers me on a level too deep for me to even explain

I start looking seriously at signing on with the other team for real, wearing their colors and silly hats, waving their big foam finger in the air - and taking on full responsibility for the care and feeding of their mascot (I hope it’s cute)


2) If we assume naturalism, and natural evolution as a byproduct, can we be confident if ever obtaining any truth?


If I understand your 2nd question, at all - then just disregard everything that comes after your first question and allow me to ask you - what are you really asking?

because now it sounds to me like a sincere attempt to understand what truth is, and a fear of making the wrong choice - am I close?

I don't think I am:


I have stated more than once that my value comes only from God. I have an ultimate source for my value. You have none.



The same is not true from my perspective. The final reckoning is different. I have motive for shaking your "quietness of mind" to serve a greater good. The truth of the matter is rather essential. Because there IS an ultimate objective, you actually WILL be measured against it. IF that knowledge upsets your "quietness of mind", thats hardly relevent because thats not the final goal. naturalism = truth is irrelevent. christianity = truth is essential.


almost sounds like a threat to me


[edit on 3/18/2009 by Spiramirabilis]



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