BEEP! BEEP! IT'S ME.

"Begin at the beginning,and go on till you come to the end: then stop." (Lewis Carroll, 1832-1896)

Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked."Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat."I don't know," Alice answered."Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."

"So long as I get somewhere," Alice added as an explanation. "Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."

"All right," said the Cat; and this time it vanished quite slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending with the grin, which remained some time after the rest of it had gone. "Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!"

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I am diagonally parked in a parallel universe. Like Arthur Dent from "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy", if you do not have a Babel Fish in your ear this blog will be completely unintelligible to you and will read something like this: "boggle, google, snoggle, slurp, slurp, dingleberry to the power of 10". Fortunately, those who have had the Babel Fish inserted in their ear, will understood this blog perfectly. If you are familiar with this technology, you will know that the Babel Fish lives on brainwave radiation. It excretes energy in the form of exactly the correct brainwaves needed by its host to understand what was just said; or in this case, what was read. The Babel Fish, thanks to scientific research, reverses the problem defined by its namesake in the Tower of Babel, where a deity was supposedly inspired to confuse the human race by making them unable to understand each other.

"DIFFICILE EST SATURAM NON SCRIBERE"

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Saturday, October 21, 2006

Does Your Invisible God Wear Invisible Clothes?

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And now, for your bedtime story, a little fairy story originally from Demark with a philosophical interpretation.

Once upon a time, many years ago, there lived an emperor who was quite an average fairy tale ruler, with one exception: he cared much about his clothes. One day he heard from two tailors named Guido and Luigi Farabutto that they could make the finest suit of clothes from the most beautiful cloth. This cloth, they said, also had the special capability that it was invisible to anyone who was either stupid or not fit for his position.

Being a bit nervous about whether he himself would be able to see the cloth, the emperor first sent two of his trusted men to see it. Of course, neither would admit that they could not see the cloth and so praised it. All the townspeople had also heard of the cloth and were interested to learn how stupid their neighbors were.

The emperor then allowed himself to be dressed in the clothes for a procession through town, never admitting that he was too unfit and stupid to see what he was wearing. For he was afraid that the other people would think that he was stupid.Of course, all the townspeople wildly praised the magnificent clothes of the emperor, afraid to admit that they could not see them, until a small child said:

'But he has nothing on!'

This was whispered from person to person until everyone in the crowd was shouting that the emperor had nothing on. The emperor heard it and knew that they were correct, but held his head high and finished the procession.

Most of you will recognize this story of "The Emperor's New Clothes" by Hans Christian Anderson. The story is a morality play with a cautionary message: -

Just because everyone else believes something is true, doesn't mean it is. Or believing something doesn't make it true.

Many of us clothe ourselves in our beliefs. Those beliefs may be religious, political, cultural or economic. Sometimes these beliefs are loosely based in reason, but more often than not, they are based on something else. Many times they are based on our emotional and psychological desires.

The emperor was motivated to believe that he was wearing wonderful clothes because he didn't want to appear to be stupid or unfit for his station as emperor. So everything that his logical, rational mind told him concerning the non-existence of those clothes, he ignored. He ignored his logical, rational thoughts because he wanted his beliefs to validate and affirm his opinion of himself.

If you have firm beliefs, instead of being like the emperor and continuing on regardless of the absurdity of the belief; ask yourself why you believe what you believe. Most of us believe things because there is a payoff. That means we believe something because we think the belief benefits us in some way. We want the belief to validate us and to affirm our opinion of ourselves or the world we live in.

That is, people hope for an emotional or psychological payoff so that they will feel good about themselves. Unfortunately for the emperor, believing in the existence of something because he didn't want to appear stupid backfired.

The irony is, he didn't save himself from appearing stupid, or from appearing unfit to be emperor; his willingness to believe in an absurdity indicated that he WAS stupid and that he WAS unfit to be emperor.


"A believer is a bird in a cage. A freethinker is an eagle parting the clouds with tireless wing." - Robert Ingersoll



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69 Comments:

Blogger Daniel said...

A believer is a bird in a cage. A freethinker is an eagle.

What a wonderful expression, Beep. I'll add it to my latest post. Cheers!

22/10/06 6:48 am  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

Good post, I agree with everything except the quote at the bottom:

"A believer is a bird in a cage. A freethinker is an eagle parting the clouds with tireless wing."

Everyone, wheather they know it or not has a set of presuppositions, everyone believes in something.

23/10/06 4:01 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: under:

Please go ahead and prove that everyone has a set of presuppositions and that everyone believes in something.

23/10/06 8:09 am  
Anonymous ted said...

I think under_the_mercy may have a point Beep. I believe that god doesn't exist and that therefore, my morality is mine and comes from me. I guess that means I believe in something. Or does it just mean that I have a belief about something and have made an assumption based on that belief, regardless that what I believe is correct?

23/10/06 10:18 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE ted

To state that someone believes in the non-existence of something is an attempt to shift the burden of proof to the person who claims the non-existence.

Shifting the burden of proof, is the fallacy of putting the burden of proof on the person who denies or questions the assertion being made.

The source of this fallacy is the assumption that something is true unless proven otherwise.

Therefore, the burden of proof is always on the person making the positive claim, as the person making the negative claim cannot logically prove nonexistence.

Because, to know that X does not exist would require a perfect knowledge of all things (omniscience).

I do not claim to be omniscient, therefore I would not claim that X does not exist. I would simply claim that I do not believe in the existence of X.

But the person making the positive claim for the existence of X, should be able to logically prove the existence of X.

23/10/06 1:05 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

Ok, you got me...:) It's merely an assumption that may or may not be correct and doesn't require belief.

Under_the_mercy:

You may be right about the presuppostions. I certainly assume a lot of things before hand that often turn out to be wrong, like my kids doing their homework when they're told to for instance, but belief? I've presupposed here that by "everyone believes in something" you mean some sort of god belief?

23/10/06 3:17 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE ted:

My suggestion would be to never, even inadvertently, let them try to shift the burden of proof to you.

If you say, "I believe in the non-existence of fairies," they will ask you to prove your belief in the nonexistence of fairies.

From that moment on you are in a losing battle as the person making the negative claim cannot logically prove nonexistence.

Some believers will DELIBERATELY try to shift the burden of proof to you as well, by claiming that if you can't prove that it doesn't exist, that it exists by default.

This is called the argument from ignorance (also a logical fallacy)and I don't let them play that game with me. :)

I would be hard pressed to name things I believe in. Not because I don't have a lot of thoughts on subjects, but because the word "belief" is used so inappropriately.

I use, "I think" much more than "I believe". I work on the premise that I am more likely to be able to logically justify why I think certain things, rather than why I believe them.

23/10/06 4:47 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

I work on the premise that I am more likely to be able to logically justify why I think certain things

And your thoughts will change should someone be able to logically justify why what you think is wrong, unlike a belief structure.

23/10/06 5:12 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE ted:

Yes, I think that if someone has a fixed belief system, they are less conducive to being able to take onboard new information.

In fact, the nature of the belief may well be that it is hostile to new information, or to contrary/contradictory information.

23/10/06 10:56 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beepbeep.
The burden of proof rests on the denier s well. You must show me why I should not believe what I believe. If not, than I claim that neither the United States nor anyone else has been to the moon, and I challenge anyone to disprove me. I also claim that the earth is not millions of years old, or even hundreds of thousands of years old. Prove me wrong on both accounts.

Daniel

24/10/06 4:22 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: anonymous

RE: "The burden of proof rests on the denier s well. You must show me why I should not believe what I believe."

No, the burden of proof lies with the person making the initial claim.

If I made the inital claim such as "There is no god", it would be my burden to make good my claim.

It isn't enough for me to say "prove me wrong" as this is called shifting the burden of proof.

(I am most unlikely to make a claim as explicitly impossible to prove as "there is no god", as I would need to be omniniscient in order to make this claim.)

I am under no obligation to attempt to prove or disprove anyone's claims; the burden lies with the person making the claim to make good their claims.

And likewise, the burden lies with me, if I make a claim. So no one is required or compelled to believe anything based on the claimant's inability to make a sound case.

If the claimant cannot make a sound case, his/her claim has failed and anyone who does not agree is under no obligation to accept the claim.

I can simply say, "I don't believe that" and I can request that they provide evidence for their claim.

The person who makes the claim, may go on to believe whatever their claim is, but they cannot expect others to believe it unless they can make a logical and compelling case for it.

Many people make the mistake of making a claim which is virtually impossible to prove.

EG. "God exists."

24/10/06 10:42 am  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

If not, than I claim that neither the United States nor anyone else has been to the moon, and I challenge anyone to disprove me. I also claim that the earth is not millions of years old, or even hundreds of thousands of years old. Prove me wrong on both accounts.

No-one is obliged to "prove" you wrong regarding these matters. Both claims are testable and observable, and the weight of evidence lies in favour of their veracity. They are not proven absolutely--but then again, neither is the sphericity of the Earth or the boiling point of water. Nothing in science is proven absolutely--and no scientist claims otherwise.

24/10/06 1:31 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

I would be hard pressed to name things I believe in.

Do you believe that the Sun will rise tomorrow?

My suggestion would be to never, even inadvertently, let them try to shift the burden of proof to you.

I think it is equally important not to allow them to dictate the terms of the debate regarding what constitutes "belief."

Underthemercy is correct to say that "everyone believes in something." Underthemercy would be incorrect, however, if he or she is implying that the beliefs everyone holds are equivalent in nature, validity or reasonableness.

Belief that the Sun will rise tomorrow, insofar as this belief constitutes an inductive conclusion from the fact that the Sun has risen hitherto on every preceding day (for almost as long as the solar system has existed, and certainly for as long as you or I have been alive), is not the same kind of belief as the belief in the existence of a deity. It is dishonest to claim otherwise, and we should allow them to get away with such dishonesty.

24/10/06 1:42 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

The burden of proof rests on the denier s well.

Beepbeep refutes this admirably (and states the case for weak atheism to boot ;)).

Incidentally, anonymous, I'm going to take a wild stab in the dark and suppose that you deny the existence of Thor and Odin. Why? Isn't the burden of proof upon you to deny that Thor and Odin exist?

24/10/06 1:45 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE arthur:

I agree. Beliefs are not of equal value, weight, or veracity just because they are called "beliefs."


There is a reasonable expectation that the sun will do today what it did yesterday, based on obervable accumlated knowledge of the sun's properties, characteristics and attributes.

So, to say, "I believe that the sun will be shining in the sky tomorrow" does not require the same amount of critical analysis as a claim such as: "I believe that the sun is the last remaining eye of the invisible pink unicorn."

24/10/06 7:19 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok. For the sake of debate I will concede that the ‘burden of proof’ doesn’t rest with the naysayer. And I agree that science can’t prove anything. So please demonstrate that I could very possibly be wrong on both accounts.

Daniel

25/10/06 12:19 am  
Anonymous Babe in the Universe said...

Hello Beep. The Emperor's New Clothes scam continues. Do you think that "dark energy" could be a nice set of clothes? Thanks for including my little blog. I've had a wonderful time in Australia.

25/10/06 6:24 am  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

RE: arthur:

"Underthemercy would be incorrect, however, if he or she is implying that the beliefs everyone holds are equivalent in nature, validity or reasonableness."

Correct, as a Judeo-Christian it would be impossible for me to believe such.

RE: beep:

Concerning the "burden of proof" it was Beep who first made a claim, the quote he used made a statement and I disagreed with it. However I will answer beeps question as best I can.

Everyone must have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas, man has to start somewhere. For instance, take the presupposition that the world we see is real, from this we formulate beliefs such as if you jump out of a 10 story building you will fall downward. If on the contrary, you take the presupposition that all that we see is NOT real, then different beliefs follow. Just as in math we take axioms and build upon them, in life man takes his presuppositions and builds upon them formulating a set of beliefs.

Presuppositions cannot be proven simply because for something to be proven a basis is needed upon which to prove it. Once you use a basis to prove the Presupposition, that basis you used becomes the presupposition.

25/10/06 6:58 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: under

"Everyone must have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas, man has to start somewhere."

I could accept this, but I won't. The reason I won't is because it is impossible to be able to show logically that "EVERYONE must have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas."

It would be better to say: "Most people have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas." I might accept that statement. Or, "I would suggest that people have a base upon which they build their thoughts and ideas."

RE: " For instance, take the presupposition that the world we see is real, from this we formulate beliefs such as if you jump out of a 10 story building you will fall downward."

PRESUPPOSE: - "to suppose or assume beforehand; take for granted in advance."

To know that if you jump off a building you will most likely be splattered is evidential. It has been observed and demonstrated. In fact, we can map the trajectory, assess the time before impact and estimate quite accurately, the spread of splatter.

This is not in the same league as religious presuppositionalism which presupposes a god, and then squeezes, prods, and manipulates all knowledge to fit the god presupposition. The question is: Which one is a belief based on faith, and which one is knowledge based on repeatable obervation and demonstration?

RE: "Presuppositions cannot be proven simply because for something to be proven a basis is needed upon which to prove it. Once you use a basis to prove the Presupposition, that basis you used becomes the presupposition. "

What a wonderful circular argument. The presupposition becomes the basis to prove the presupposition. And religious people wonder why the rest of us shake our heads...

25/10/06 8:17 am  
Blogger Daniel said...

A believer is a bird in a cage. It surely doesn't need thousands and thousands of fancy jargon words and elaborate academic theories to prove this.

Commonsense works for some!

25/10/06 1:06 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

Ok. For the sake of debate I will concede that the ‘burden of proof’ doesn’t rest with the naysayer. And I agree that science can’t prove anything. So please demonstrate that I could very possibly be wrong on both accounts.

(Sigh.)

25/10/06 1:09 pm  
Blogger Cameron W said...

Hi beepbeep,

Thanks for the Phil Collins song/youtube video.

I'm curious why you focus a number of your posts on Christianity.

25/10/06 5:01 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

Re arthur: I so want to believe that anonymous didn't say that. ... But the evidence is there for all to shake their heads over.

Did we just waste time explaining burden of proof?

RE anonymous: Let me explain once more.

These are YOUR claims now.

1. I will concede that the ‘burden of proof’ doesn’t rest with the naysayer.

2. I agree that science can’t prove anything.

As they are now your claims, or beliefs, the burden of proof is on you to demonstrate that they are correct.

25/10/06 5:22 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE cameron:

I am an atheist, so I do tend to blog a lot about religion. I am much more familiar with christianity than I am with any other religion, so my arguments focus more on religions which I know a bit more about.

I think all the god claims, past and present, are equally silly; so I don't have a vested interest in blogging about christianity because I support some other religious belief.

25/10/06 5:28 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

A believer is a bird in a cage. It surely doesn't need thousands and thousands of fancy jargon words and elaborate academic theories to prove this.

What jargon/elaborate academic theories are you referring to?

25/10/06 7:28 pm  
Blogger Daniel said...

Arthur, non facias malum ut inde fiat bonum!

Cheers!

26/10/06 8:06 am  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

It was a simple question.

26/10/06 10:27 am  
Blogger Daniel said...

There is little about you that is simple, arthur.

Are you wanting me to make a comment so that you can take it back to your site and hold it up to ridicule again? Sorry to disappoint you. You'll have to make do with anonymous.

26/10/06 3:24 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

Are you wanting me to make a comment so that you can take it back to your site and hold it up to ridicule again?

Only if the comment you make is worthy of ridicule . . . but that's up to you, not me.

In the meantime, I really am curious as to what you believe has been uttered, either by myself or by other commenters, that could reasonably be categorised as either "fancy sounding jargon" or "elaborate academic theories." (And in the case of the latter, in what sense may they be described as "academic," and to which branch of academic lore do they belong?)

26/10/06 8:47 pm  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

RE:beep:

"I could accept this, but I won't. The reason I won't is because it is impossible to be able to show logically that "EVERYONE must have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas." "

It is impossibe to build logically on nothing, therefore everything must either have a base, or be assumed. that base then upon which you build must have a base itself, which must have a base, etc. Therefore one must start with an assumption. thus presuppositions.


"To know that if you jump off a building you will most likely be splattered is evidential. It has been observed and demonstrated. In fact, we can map the trajectory, assess the time before impact and estimate quite accurately, the spread of splatter.

This is not in the same league as religious presuppositionalism which presupposes a god, and then squeezes, prods, and manipulates all knowledge to fit the god presupposition. The question is: Which one is a belief based on faith, and which one is knowledge based on repeatable obervation and demonstration?"

No, the presupposition here is that what you see is real, not that if you jump off you will fall.


"What a wonderful circular argument. The presupposition becomes the basis to prove the presupposition."

No, the presupposition does NOT become the bases to prove the presupposition, it is mearly assumed.

"And religious people wonder why the rest of us shake our heads..."

In which case you must shake your head at all mathamations, chemists, and scientists also as they base all they know upon UNPROVABLE axioms.

27/10/06 1:31 am  
Blogger Daniel said...

"Only if the comment you make is worthy of ridicule."

Perhaps you're being somewhat pretentious, Arthur? Judge not that ye be not judged!

27/10/06 6:13 am  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

Judge not that ye be not judged!

A somewhat ironic remark--given your accusation, still unsupported, that people around here have been employing "fancy jargon words" and "elaborate academic theories."

In which case you must shake your head at all mathamations, chemists, and scientists also as they base all they know upon UNPROVABLE axioms.

The only "presupposition" employed by scientists qua scientists that I can think of is the methodological notion that for every natural phenomenon a natural explanation may be found.

It is worth noting that those Christians who wax lyrical about this "naturalistic bias" in science are all-too-eager to embrace it everytime they opt to visit a medical doctor, rather than a witchdoctor or shaman, to cure what ails them.

27/10/06 10:04 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE under:

Your initial claim > "Everyone must have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas, man has to start somewhere."

You can assume that most people have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas, but you cannot definitively KNOW this.

To claim that you know that everyone has a "base" on which they build thoughts and ideas can only really be known by someone if they are claiming omniscience. Are you claiming to be omniscient?

What is reasonable, is to claim that most people build upon their thoughts and ideas. It is impossible to know that all people do, and it is impossible to know that they all build upon the "same base" .

They may, for example, build their thoughts and ideas upon many bases.

So, obviously, the base upon which I build knowledge and the base upon which you claim to build knowledge might be completely different things and I am fairly sure that they are.

Now, when you talk about an assumption, I also think that we are not refering to the same thing.

I can assume that people need to eat, or they will die of starvation. This is a reasonable assumption because it is evidenced that people require food, and that the cessation of food will eventually lead to death. It is evidenced through observation.

Are all assumptions reasonable? I don't think that they are, and I don't think that you think they are either. In other words, not all assumptions have the same weight, value or veracity.

If I turn around 3 times whilst hopping on one leg and some clouds cover the sun, would it be reasonable to assume that my actions caused the clouds to cover the sun?

Of course not. It isn't a reasonable assumption. it would be an assumption based on the logical fallacy of a false correlative.

More specifically, it is an example of the logical fallacy of correlation implying causation, or the cum hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy.

So, not all assumptions are reasonable. (Back to the bones of the argument)

Do the words "base", "assumption" and "presupposition" have the same meaning? You seem to use them as if they do.

It is difficult to attempt an argument based on common ground, if words are substituted for other words and indentical meaning is inferred by doing so.

Define the words and you define the argument. Define the argument, and there is a much better chance that the argument is on common ground.

RE: "No, the presupposition here is that what you see is real, not that if you jump off you will fall."

Oh, so your assumption is that the world isn't real? Is your assumption that the world isn't real based on a cum hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy? I can't wait for how you logically prove that the world isn't real.

RE: "In which case you must shake your head at all mathamations, chemists, and scientists also as they base all they know upon UNPROVABLE axioms."

You seem to be claiming that the world isn't real, so why does it bother you what mathematicians, chemists or scientists claim? If the world isn't real it should make no difference to you what they claim.

Umm no. Science doesn't pretend to have all the answers. God belief does. Which model is better at explaining the natural world? I will go with the scientific models over the "talking snake model" everytime.

One is based on belief and one is based in reason. I prefer reason. People who prefer faith tend to believe that hopping on one leg will make the sun disappear.

27/10/06 11:23 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who or what are mathemations, Arthur?

27/10/06 1:27 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

Who or what are mathemations, Arthur?

I'm curious about that myself, anon. (I think you're referring to under_the_mercy's comment, not mine.)

27/10/06 2:55 pm  
Blogger Daniel said...

Anon, get it right. Arthur said mathamations!

How are your English studies going, Arthur?

27/10/06 4:22 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

Tsk Tsk. Is granny going to have to smack everyone with the paddle?

(Spare the Quarter-Inch Plumbing Supply Line, Spoil the Child
http://beepbeepitsme.blogspot.com/2006/08/spare-quarter-inch-plumbing-supply.html)

Look what the bickering has made me do. It made me spam my own blog with my own articles!

27/10/06 5:02 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

Anon, get it right. Arthur said mathamations!

Where exactly did I do that?

How are your English studies going, Arthur?

How are your reading skills? And how go your plans for making the Blogosphere a much more civilised place? Great to see you leading by example.

27/10/06 5:16 pm  
Blogger Arthur_Vandelay said...

Look what the bickering has made me do. It made me spam my own blog with my own articles!

Apologies, BeepBeep.

27/10/06 5:18 pm  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

RE: beep:

RE: “You can assume that most people have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas, but you cannot definitively KNOW this.”

It’s called common sense.
I challenge you to present me with one thing that is not based upon anything. There are none, with the exception of assumptions.

RE: “…it is impossible to know that they all build upon the "same base" .
They may, for example, build their thoughts and ideas upon many bases.”

I never presented the idea that all people build upon the same base, so I don’t know why you brought it up.

RE: “I can assume that people need to eat, or they will die of starvation. This is a reasonable assumption because it is evidenced that people require food, and that the cessation of food will eventually lead to death. It is evidenced through observation.”

Sorry for not clarifying better, your example above is what I term “belief”, that is an idea based upon other ideas or assumptions. By “assumption” I mean that which cannot be proven or logically based.

RE: “You seem to be claiming that the world isn't real, so why does it bother you what mathematicians, chemists or scientists claim? If the world isn't real it should make no difference to you what they claim.”

I never said or even implied that the world isn’t real, I said that an example of a presupposition that we both hold is that the world we see is real. I see that you managed to find a way around answering my statement about axioms, please answer it in your next post.

Here it is for convince sake:
“In which case you must shake your head at all mathematicians, chemists, and scientists also as they base all they know upon UNPROVABLE axioms.
RE: “Umm no. Science doesn't pretend to have all the answers.”
Where did you get the idea that I said that they did?

RE: “One is based on belief and one is based in reason. I prefer reason.”

Your reason is essentially based upon belief also.

28/10/06 6:37 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: under

RE: common sense

Common sense isn't all that common, nor is it always sensible. Believing that fairies exist is common, but is it considered to be sensible?

Your original claim: "Everyone must have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas, man has to start somewhere."

Someone who is braindamaged or who has suffered braindeath, is unlikely to have a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas.

Certainly, brain injury is likely to impair this ability. Brain injury as a result of accident, disease or brain dysfunction which is congenital, is likely to impair the ability to build thoughts and ideas.

Therefore, you cannot KNOW that EVERYONE has a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas unless you claim omniscience.

You can claim that most people have a base upon which they build their thoughts and ideas. You cannot claim to know that everyone has a base upon which to build their thoughts and ideas.

And I also think you need to explain what you mean by "base."

RE: "I challenge you to present me with one thing that is not based upon anything. There are none, with the exception of assumptions."

For instance, your god isn't based on anything, as you no doubt claim that it came from nothing, or that it has a;ways existed.

If something does not have an origin or a beginning, it apparently came from nothing.

RE: assumptions

"To assume" basically means to take for granted without proof or evidence.

But if someone said, "this is a reasonable assumption", they are obviously not refering to a lack of proof or evidence.

"I can assume that people need to eat, or they will die of starvation. This is a reasonable assumption because it is evidenced that people require food, and that the cessation of food will eventually lead to death. It is evidenced through observation."

But if it alows you to understand the meaning more easily, I will substitute "assume" with "claim."

"I can claim that people need to eat, or they will die of starvation. This is a reasonable claim because it is evidenced that people require food, and that the cessation of food will eventually lead to death. It is evidenced through observation."

You seem to want to claim that all beliefs have the same value.

You also seem to want to claim that all or any presuppositions have equal value.

You also seem to want to claim that any axiom, belief, or presupposition have the same value.

I don't accept this and I would be surprised if you do. If, on the other hand, you do claim this; I can't help you as it would be impossible to have an argument based in reason, if you consider that reason has no more value than religious belief.

It would also seem to be contradictory of you to attempt to use logic as a basis for your god belief, if you do not consider logic to have anymore value than blind faith.

28/10/06 11:19 am  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

RE: "Certainly, brain injury is likely to impair this ability. Brain injury as a result of accident, disease or brain dysfunction which is congenital, is likely to impair the ability to build thoughts and ideas."

Not the ability to build, but the ability to build reasonably. The building remains the same.

RE: "For instance, your god isn't based on anything, as you no doubt claim that it came from nothing, or that it has a;ways existed."

That is one of my assumptions.

RE: "You seem to want to claim that all beliefs have the same value.

You also seem to want to claim that all or any presuppositions have equal value.

You also seem to want to claim that any axiom, belief, or presupposition have the same value."

??? where do you get that idea? If I thought that then how it the world could I disagree with you?

You STILL are ignoring my point about the unprovable axoims that mathamatitions base all they know upon. Please answer, or concide.

29/10/06 6:54 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: "Certainly, brain injury is likely to impair this ability. Brain injury as a result of accident, disease or brain dysfunction which is congenital, is likely to impair the ability to build thoughts and ideas."

Your reply: Not the ability to build, but the ability to build reasonably. The building remains the same.

If by "build" you mean the ability to "learn" then brain injury, depending on the severity, is likely to impair the ability to build thoughts and ideas.

Cognitive difficulties are highly common in persons who are traumatically brain injured, and problems will vary depending on the location and severity of the injury to the brain.

If the brain injury is severe enough, the ability to learn or build upon previous information is not just inhibited, it is irreparable.

Babies born with anencephaly are born basically without a brain. They have essentially only a brain stem, which allows only the most primitive or instinctual responses and most die shortly after birth.

Sometimes these babies are kept alive in order to harvest the organs for transplant patients. Similarly, adult patients who have suffered brain death, can be kept alive, these adult and infant patients do not have the ability to build upon thoughts and ideas. They are no longer capable of learning.

RE: presupposing a god.

I already know that you presuppose a god. What you need to demonstrate is how not presupposing a god makes any difference.

If your argument is that axioms such as in logic and mathematics are necessarily defined as self evident truths, then this is not correct.

In these subjects, an axiom is a formal logical expression used in a deduction to yield further results.

If you are refering to other epistemological theories, (such as god belief) then an axiom can be considered a self-evident truth upon which other knowledge must rest, and from which other knowledge is built.

But not all epistemologists, or philosophers agree that any axioms, understood in that sense, exist.

So, what I need you to do is to demonstrate how NOT presupposing a god makes any difference.

29/10/06 10:39 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

In other words, demonstrate how your god axiom is necessary.

29/10/06 10:42 am  
Anonymous ted said...

I'm guessing that the universe can't exist if we don't presuppose god. If he never existed, he couldn't create it, or us. But seeing as he did, then he must be real...:)

29/10/06 10:44 pm  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

When did I say my "god axiom" is mecessary?

its not, it is just one of my personal presuppositions.

What is necessary is not the "god axoim" but simply an axiom.

My whole point about the axoims is that mathamatitions build all their laws upon the UNPROVABLE.

RE: ted:

No, I believe because in God because God chose me, my bible tells me that I was DEAD in sin, dead people don't do anything.

I do however, believe that reason leads us to God, for instance I personally do not believe that spontanious generation is a posibility, I do not believe the personal can come out of the impersonal, I do not believe that information can be added to a gene but rather it can only be taken away, (a syberian wolf can turn into a poodle through enough genetic material being dropped, but the poodle can never regain the material to become the wolf).

Science has proven the first and third, reason proves the second.

30/10/06 2:38 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE under

RE: "When did I say my "god axiom" is mecessary? "

If it isn't necessary, there seems no need to posit it as a presupposition. You see this is the basic problem with the "god axiom."

RE: "My whole point about the axoims is that mathamatitions build all their laws upon the UNPROVABLE."

Except that mathematical axioms are necessary if you want to continue using that computer of yours.

30/10/06 3:50 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

So when my sister splices a gene and adds material, she's not actually adding material? Hmmm...

I think what you'll probably find, should you look around, is that "selective breeding" doesn't remove genes but supresses some and as a result, accentuates others. A poodle is genetically identicle to a wolf (canis lupus), not to mention a newfoundland hound, but some genes are supressed, so it's NOT like a wolf. Because man continues to breed for the perfect example, a taste which changes from year to year, many puppies are killed because they don't fit the look or temerament of a given breed. Left to it's own devices though, who knows what may happen over the course of a few generations.

So, if you were to take only the misfits from every litter and breed selectively, using only that stock and continuing with only the most wolf like, it wouldn't be long (maybe 10 generations or so) before you got back to your wolf. As far as I know, the only animal that this has been done to was captive mynk. It seems that when you breed the feistiness out and domesticate them, their fur changes colour (turns white basically) and lustre and becomes worthless. Breed it back to it's original state and the money's in the bank, but they'll tear you apart should they get a chance. So science hasn't really proven three at all. Quite the opposite, or so it would seem.

30/10/06 8:40 pm  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

RE: beep:

RE: "If it isn't necessary, there seems no need to posit it as a presupposition."

What is necessary is a presupposition, not necessaraly the God presupposition.

RE: "Except that mathematical axioms are necessary if you want to continue using that computer of yours."

Exactly, it is NECESSARY to base math upon the unprovable.

RE: ted:

The individual genes cannot accept new information.

Regardless wheather seletive breeding removes or supresses, new information can be never be added to the genes. A slug could never become an ape.

31/10/06 1:31 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: under

RE: "What is necessary is a presupposition, not necessaraly the God presupposition."

Presupposition: - the act of presupposing; a supposition made PRIOR to having knowledge.

Demonstrate to me specifically where science makes a supposition PRIOR to having knowledge and where this supposition is not tested for falsifiability as part of the scientific hypothesis.

1. Specifically state the supposition.
2. Specifically state how this supposition is independent of other knowledge.
3. Specifically state how this supposition is not falsifiable.
4. And specifically demonstrate how this supposition is not accounted for as a potential variable in the hypothesis.

RE: "Exactly, it is NECESSARY to base math upon the unprovable."

In logic and mathematics, an axiom is not necessarily a self-evident truth (as opposed to philosophy), but rather a formal logical expression used in a deduction to yield further results.

To axiomatize a system of knowledge is to show that all of its claims can be derived from a small set of sentences that are INDEPENDENT of one another. This does not imply that they could have been known independently; and there are typically multiple ways to axiomatize a given system of knowledge.

Mathematics distinguishes two types of axioms: logical axioms and non-logical axioms.

Non-logical axioms are often simply referred to as axioms in mathematical discourse.

This does NOT mean that it is claimed that they are true in some ABSOLUTE sense. In some groups, the group operation is commutative, and this can be asserted with the introduction of an additional axiom, but without this axiom we can do quite well developing group theory, and we can even take its negation as an axiom for the study of non-commutative groups.

So, not all mathematical axioms are an assumption of a self-evident truth.

Scientists do not claim to prove anything, they find good explanations using scientific methods. Science demonstrates explanations of natural phenomena.

It demonstrates explanations of natural phenomena through the processes of observation, hypothesis testing, measurement, experimentation, logical argument and theory building.

Scientific explanations are falsifiable, or they are NOT science.

Scientists rely upon evidence, which exists REGARDLESS of any preconceptions or presuppositions.

31/10/06 6:10 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE under

RE: "The individual genes cannot accept new information."

Some mutations add information to a genome; some subtract it.

Creationists get by with this claim only by leaving the term "information" undefined, impossibly vague, or constantly shifting.

By any reasonable definition, increases in information have been observed to evolve. We have observed the evolution of increased genetic variety in a population (Lenski 1995; Lenski et al. 1991)

increased genetic material (Alves et al. 2001; Brown et al. 1998; Hughes and Friedman 2003; Lynch and Conery 2000; Ohta 2003)

novel genetic material (Knox et al. 1996; Park et al. 1996)

novel genetically-regulated abilities (Prijambada et al. 1995)

A mechanism that is likely to be particularly common for adding information is gene duplication, in which a long stretch of DNA is copied, followed by point mutations that change one or both of the copies.

Genetic sequencing has revealed several instances in which this is likely the origin of some proteins.

For example:
Two enzymes in the histidine biosynthesis pathway that are barrel-shaped, structural and sequence evidence suggests, were formed via gene duplication and fusion of two half-barrel ancestors (Lang et al. 2000).

RNASE1, a gene for a pancreatic enzyme, was duplicated, and in langur monkeys one of the copies mutated into RNASE1B, which works better in the more acidic small intestine of the langur. (Zhang et al. 2002)

Yeast was put in a medium with very little sugar. After 450 generations, hexose transport genes had duplicated several times, and some of the duplicated versions had mutated further. (Brown et al. 1998)

The biological literature is full of additional examples.

According to Shannon-Weaver information theory, random noise maximizes information. This is not just playing word games.

The random variation that mutations add to populations is the variation on which selection acts.

Mutation alone will not cause adaptive evolution, but by eliminating nonadaptive variation, natural selection communicates information about the environment to the organism so that the organism becomes better adapted to it.

Natural selection is the process by which information about the environment is transferred to an organism's genome and thus to the organism (Adami et al. 2000).

The process of mutation and selection is observed to increase information and complexity in simulations (Adami et al. 2000; Schneider 2000).

31/10/06 6:22 pm  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

RE: "Demonstrate to me specifically where science makes a supposition PRIOR to having knowledge and where this supposition is not tested for falsifiability as part of the scientific hypothesis."

Any axoim, for an axoim is, by definition, something assumed.

RE: "In logic and mathematics, an axiom is not necessarily a self-evident truth (as opposed to philosophy), but rather a formal logical expression used in a deduction to yield further results."

Yes, we could discuss the atributes of axoims for then next 12 years, but the fact that an axoim is unprovable still stands.

RE: "Scientists do not claim to prove anything"

Yes, but lets stay on topic here. I didin't even mention the word "scientists" in my last post, much less claim that it proved something.

RE: "Some mutations add information to a genome; some subtract it."

Regardless, you can selectivly breed poodles for ever, but you will never get a wolf. Alse, there has not been one observed genetic mutation that helps the creature in its natural inviorment. Most are detrimential, and the remaining few are netrual.

1/11/06 4:48 am  
Anonymous ted said...

Re Mercy: Regardless wheather seletive breeding removes or supresses, new information can be never be added to the genes.

Personally, I'm not really 100% sure about the gene stuff, it's way over my head, but my sister assures me that when she adds material, that's exactly what she does. For instance, genetically modified canola, modified to be more resistant of pests and pesticides has porcine genes. That's pig genes. How did they get in there if they weren't added? Or are we just adding genes, not altering genes? This is almost as confusing as god belief to me, but it would appear that canola isn't necessarily canola anymore.

Beep, please take note of our new URL. Telstra killed whitepage.com.au...

1/11/06 12:03 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE under:

RE: "Any axoim, for an axoim is, by definition, something assumed."

No. In certain epistemological theories, (like philosphy and theology) an axiom is a self-evident truth upon which other knowledge must rest, and from which other knowledge is built up.

An axiom in this sense can be known before one knows any of these other propositions.

But NOT ALL epistemologists agree that any axioms, understood in that sense, exist.

Some philosophers and scientists, most notably Karl Popper disagree.

Mathematics distinguishes two types of axioms: logical axioms and non-logical axioms.

Logical axioms in mathematics are formulas that are considered to be universally valid. That is, they are formulas that are satisfied by every structure under every variable assignment function.

These logical axioms were not derived by a "subjective appreciation society of mathematical symbols." They are formulas which have "stood the test of time" and are therefore considered axioms.

It doesn't mean that these axioms will NEVER be falsified but is it unlikely that they will.

Falsifiable does not mean false. For a proposition to be falsifiable, it must be possible, at least in principle, to make an observation that would show the proposition to fall short of being a tautology, even if that observation is not actually made.

Non-logical axioms in mathematics are formulas that play the role of theory-specific assumptions.

Non-logical formulas postulate about the similarities, correlations or differences between different mathematical structures and are not considered to be self-evident truths. Non-logical formula are falsifiable.

RE: Scientists

Scientists use mathematical axioms, and they do not claim to prove anything. In science, it is the weight and veracity of evidence which counts.

RE: "Regardless, you can selectivly breed poodles for ever, but you will never get a wolf. Alse, there has not been one observed genetic mutation that helps the creature in its natural inviorment. Most are detrimential, and the remaining few are netrual."

Beneficial mutations are commonly observed. They are common enough to be problems in the cases of antibiotic resistance in disease-causing organisms and pesticide resistance in agricultural pests.

Mutations have given bacteria the ability to degrade nylon. Plant breeders have used mutation breeding to induce mutations and select the beneficial ones.

Certain mutations in humans confer resistance to AIDS or to heart disease. There is a mutation in humans makes bones strong.

Transposons are a common mutation, especially in plants, and help to provide beneficial diversity.

In vitro mutation and selection can be used to evolve substantially improved function of RNA molecules, such as a ribozyme.

Whether a mutation is beneficial or not depends on environment. A mutation that helps the organism in one circumstance could harm it in another. When the environment changes, variations that once were counteradaptive suddenly become favored.

Sickle cell anemia is an example of this. SCA is a disease caused by point mutation in the hemoglobin beta gene.

Carrier frequency varies significantly around the world, with high rates associated with zones of high malaria incidence, since carriers of the sickle cell anemia gene are somewhat protected against malaria.

The sickle cell anemia mutation is beneficial for an indiviual who lives in Africa or South East Asia where the probability of dying from malaria is high.

In that environment, the mutation is beneficial as it offers resistance to the disease of malaria. In nations where morality rates are high from malaria, the sickle cell anemia mutation is beneficial.

1/11/06 2:09 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE ted:

Thanks for the tip about whitepages. I will update my blogroll accordingly.

1/11/06 4:53 pm  
Anonymous ted said...

Thanks Beep..:)

I hope you don't mind Beep but Mercy, if you're wondering where I've gone, well now you know...

2/11/06 12:44 am  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

Axiom (by wikipedia):

An axiom is any sentence, proposition, statement or rule that forms the basis of a formal system. Unlike theorems, axioms are NEITHER derived by principles of deduction, NOR are they demonstrable by formal proofs.
Instead, an axiom is TAKE FOR GRANTED as valid, and serves as a necessary starting point for deducing and inferencing logically consistent propositions.

This is the definition of axioms as a WHOLE.

RE: scientists:

I understand scientists use axioms, space shuttles are built using them to. Any number of topics are related but dont apply. So lets stay on topic.


RE: mutations:

Many of you examples are formes of micro-evolution, the rest are not in their natural enviorment.

RE: ted:

Thanks for the head up.

2/11/06 4:47 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: under_the_mercy

RE : Axioms

And I noticed that you failed to include the fact that NOT all axioms are considered self -evident. So, I will post it again, just as a refresher for you.

But NOT ALL epistemologists agree that any axioms, understood in that sense, exist.

Some philosophers and scientists, most notably Karl Popper disagree.

Mathematics distinguishes two types of axioms: logical axioms and non-logical axioms.

Logical axioms in mathematics are formulas that are considered to be universally valid. That is, they are formulas that are satisfied by every structure under every variable assignment function.

These logical axioms were NOT derived by a "subjective appreciation society of mathematical symbols." They are formulas which have "stood the test of time" and are therefore considered axioms.

It doesn't mean that these axioms will NEVER be falsified but is it unlikely that they will.

Falsifiable does not mean false. For a proposition to be falsifiable, it must be possible, at least in principle, to make an observation that would show the proposition to fall short of being a tautology, even if that observation is not actually made.

Non-logical axioms in mathematics are formulas that play the role of theory-specific assumptions.

Non-logical formulas postulate about the similarities, correlations or differences between different mathematical structures and are NOT considered to be self-evident truths. Non-logical formula are falsifiable.

Not all axioms are self-evident truths upon which all other information must rest.
Not all axioms are self-evident propositions upon which all other information must rest.
Not all propositions are self-evident truths upon which all other information must rest.
Not all propositions are axioms, or self-evident truths upon which all other information must rest.

You wish to claim that your god proposition is an axiom, or self evident truth upon which all other information must rest.

This is the fallacy of the stolen concept. To be considered an axiom, it should be able to be demonstrated how it is necessary. From what I can see, it is only necessary if you believe that snakes talk.

What happens to the universe if I do not use the "god proposition?" Do trees, flowers, humans, animals cease to exist? Do my TV, radio and computer stop functioning? Does the earth cease to rotate on its axis? Does the universe and everything in it disappear? Do plants start having wild anal sex with unicorns?

I can happily dispose of the "god proposition" in the knowledge that the universe will continue to do that which it does. The "god proposition" is a bad answer to a emotionally loaded question.

RE: mutations

Mutations exist. Some of these are beneficial, some are not. These mutations are demonstratable. All your "god dancing" will alter none of this.

2/11/06 12:25 pm  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

RE: beep:

Regardless wheather self-evidant or not, etc. AXIOMS ARE UNPROVABLE AND ASSUMED.

RE: "You wish to claim that your god proposition is an axiom, or self evident truth upon which all other information must rest."

Hmm, you just said in this post:

"NOT all axioms are considered self -evident."

4/11/06 12:37 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE under

Let's see if I can clear it up for you.

1.Not all presuppositions are of equal value. (eg. The presupposition that fairies make plants appear green, does not have the same value of: "Plants appear green because of chlorophyll.")

The second presupposition has more value because it has more predictive power. By predictive power, I mean that it is observable, testable, and measurable to the extent that the presence of chlorophyll in plants indicates the action of sunlight as part of the metabolism of green plants.

2.Not all presuppositions are self evident truths. (eg. The presupposition that the flying spaghetti monster created the universe, is not a self-evident truth. This is a self-evident truth: "If equals be subtracted from equals, the remainders are equal." (7-2 =7-2)

The self evident truth has more predictive power than the presupposition which preceded it.

3. Not all axioms are self-evident truths. In logic and mathematics, an axiom is not necessarily a self-evident truth, but rather a formal logical expression used in a deduction to yield further results.

(eg. Logical axioms in mathematics are considered universally valid, or self-evident truths. Non-logical axioms in mathematics are NOT considered to be universally valid, and are NOT self-evident truths. They are NOT tautologies. They are not self-evident truths. )

(A tautology in logic is a statement true by virtue of its logical form. A tautology is therefore self evident according to logic. It is a self evident truth.)

4. MOST axioms ARE self-evident truths or tautologies. (see above)

5. MOST presuppositions are NOT self-evident truths or tautologies and therefore MOST are NOT axiomatic.

Most presuppositions are not self-evident truths because the number of presuppositions which are availble is only limited by human imagination.

In other words, I could probably make up presupposition after presupposition until I reached the limit of my imagination or until I fell off the chair through total boredom or some other factor.

The ability to imagine and construct a presupposition, does not make it true, nor does it make it a self-evident truth, nor does it make it axiomatic.

A presupposition may have no predictive value whatsoever.

4/11/06 3:27 pm  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

I will try one more time. REGARDLESS of all the above, axioms are:

1. Unprovable
2. Assumed

P.S.

"The presupposition...Plants appear green because of chlorophyll.""

Thats a presupposition? lol.

5/11/06 6:39 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: under

And I will try one more time. All axioms are not considered to be self evident truths. Not all axioms are tautologies.

Your "talking snake" presupposition is neither axiomatic, nor self evident. It is without value for anyone who uses logic.

RE: "The presupposition...Plants appear green because of chlorophyll."

A better wording of the presupposition would be "plants appear green because of the presence of a molecule."

I am sure that the bible talks about molecules often. OOpps, I forgot, it deals with "talking snakes" instead.

5/11/06 10:04 am  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

"All axioms are not considered to be self evident truths. Not all axioms are tautologies."

That does not change my point, it is irrevalant to the fact that axioms are assumed and unprovable.

chlorophyll:

Nothing to do with chlorophyll, or molecules for that matter, can even remotely be a presupposition.

Really, if you think "plants appear green because of the presence of a molecule" is a presupposition, you need to go look up the word.

6/11/06 8:03 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: under

RE: "That does not change my point, it is irrevalant to the fact that axioms are assumed and unprovable."

As per the last post, show me where it says that all axioms are assumed and unprovable.

RE: "Nothing to do with chlorophyll, or molecules for that matter, can even remotely be a presupposition."

Demonstrate to me how this: "Plants appear green because of the presence of a molecule" is not a pressuposition.

6/11/06 10:17 am  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

I'll just give you the definiton.

Axiom:

Any sentence, proposition, statement or rule that forms the basis of a formal system. Unlike theorems, AXIOMS ARE NEITHER DERIVED BY PRINCIPLES OF DEDUCTION, NOR ARE THEY DEMONSTRABLE BY FORMAL PROOFS. INSTEAD, AN AXIOM IS TAKEN FOR GRANTED AS VALID, and serves as a necessary starting point for deducing and inferencing logically consistent propositions. In many usages, "axiom," "postulate," and "assumption" are used interchangably.

Presupposition:

"a supposition made prior to having knowledge"

The only way man even knows about the existance of molecules and chlorophyll is becuse of many scientific experiments. These experiments were based upon axioms. Presuppositions come BEFORE knowledge, not after.

8/11/06 4:41 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE: under

RE: "Any sentence, proposition, statement or rule that forms the basis of a formal system. Unlike theorems, AXIOMS ARE NEITHER DERIVED BY PRINCIPLES OF DEDUCTION, NOR ARE THEY DEMONSTRABLE BY FORMAL PROOFS. INSTEAD, AN AXIOM IS TAKEN FOR GRANTED AS VALID, and serves as a necessary starting point for deducing and inferencing logically consistent propositions. In many usages, "axiom," "postulate," and "assumption" are used interchangably."

1. In certain epistemological theories, an axiom IS a self-evident truth upon which other knowledge MUST rest, and from which other knowledge is built up. An axiom in this sense can be known before one knows any of these other propostions. Not all epistemologists agree that any axioms, understood in that sense, exist.

2. In logic and mathematics, an axiom IS NOT necessarily a self-evident truth, but rather a formal logical expression used in a deduction to yield further results.

RE: "Presupposition: - a supposition made prior to having knowledge. The only way man even knows about the existance of molecules and chlorophyll is becuse of many scientific experiments. These experiments were based upon axioms. Presuppositions come BEFORE knowledge, not after."

All presuppositions inherently contain a degree of knowledge. There is no point in the "god presupposition" unless the claim is being made that the word "god" represents something the user is familiar with.



So, this - "Plants appear green because of the presence of a molecule", claims that: -

1. Something called plants exist.
2. Something called green exists.
3. Something called a molecule exists.

The "god pressuposition" also claims that something exists. It claims that something called god exists which has specific attributes and characteristics.

They both claim prior knowledge. If the god presupposition didn't claim prior knowledge, it would be written like this.

"X exists." (where X could stand for anything)

8/11/06 12:01 pm  
Blogger under_the_mercy said...

RE: "1. In certain epistemological theories, an axiom IS a self-evident truth upon which other knowledge MUST rest, and from which other knowledge is built up. An axiom in this sense can be known before one knows any of these other propostions. Not all epistemologists agree that any axioms, understood in that sense, exist.

2. In logic and mathematics, an axiom IS NOT necessarily a self-evident truth, but rather a formal logical expression used in a deduction to yield further results."

Why do you keep posting this? It does not change the fact that axioms are assumed and unprovable.

RE: presuppositions:

Just go read up on it if you still think that "Plants appear green because of the presence of a molecule" is a presupposition. Its a LOGICAL and PROVABLE fact.

11/11/06 1:43 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE under:

But at one time, it may have been a presupposition upon which other information may rest.

Chronology is the only difference.

13/11/06 12:13 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

And for further analogies about invisible gods -

The Holy Invisible Egg
http://beepbeepitsme.blogspot.com/2007/01/holy-invisible-egg.html

18/1/07 10:45 am  

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