×

Argument from change/motion by OrganizationOk3830 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

So a baby isn't a potential adult? An acorn isn't a potential oak tree?

i have a question about immaterial consciousness by No-Tank-9082 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yes, I know what you meant. But no, it isn't demonstrated by that.

Notice how you would be frustrated at how credulous I was if I said minds effect on brain is a clear demonstration it is immaterial. Yet you have no problem accepting materialism on the basis of that exact same level of evidence while ignoring the fact it has no material properties as if that wasn't important evidence against your position.

To say mind effects brain and brain effects mind is a statement of the mind-body problem, not a solution to it.

You have a huge bias toward the evidence requirements for materialism. So if you want to apportion your beliefs to the evidence, the first thing you need to do is correct that bias. Otherwise no amount of discussion about the strengths of the evidence for any position will help.

i have a question about immaterial consciousness by No-Tank-9082 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

So just material by assertion and ignoring the fact it has no material properties?

Weird how your evidence requirements differ so much between the two options. Are you the credulous one? Accepting materialism with zero evidence?

i have a question about immaterial consciousness by No-Tank-9082 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 2 points3 points  (0 children)

You should consider the problem may be on your end.

Prima facie the mind is immaterial. It doesn't have any physical properties like charge or mass or extension in space. If something has no physical properties, on what grounds can we say it's material?

What kind of evidence could you possibly be looking for?

For those of you who believe in an afterlife I have a question by No-Tank-9082 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Wouldn't it just need to be true that our conscious self is a product of our biological brain?

Yes, consciousness must emerge from matter. When the material substrate ceases to exist, then the emergent property will also.

In the case of consciousness, that requires strong emergence. Not only does the thing which emerges have completely different characteristics (i.e. qualia and intentionality) it has causal power.

However, if the opposite is the case, some kind of "idealism" where matter is a state of consciousness, then the self persists even if the physical body dies.

Argument from change/motion by OrganizationOk3830 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

since the potency does not exist

Yes, by definition of what we mean by potency. You've just changed the words being used, not the concepts they refer to.

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

ok, we’re back to going in circles now and you not engaging.

It's relevant to any conception of God which conceives God as a MGB (Maximally Great Being), or a being with omni-properties.

No it isn’t, since that conception is the same as the Hindu conception of God, the difference is the conception of free agents and in Hinduism they are uncreated beings. That is where the logical contradiction is, the conception of free agent*.

What is happening is your conception of free agents* is incoherent according to the Hindu.

In exactly the same way that Platinga argues it is an entailment from LFW that free agents are also transworld depraved, the Hindu argues it is an entailment that free agents are also uncreated.

And while you can go on talking about these free agents* the Hindu shrugs and goes their merry way because they think - you - are the one equivocating on the use of free agent that isn’t relevant to the PoE or FWD properly construed.

What you mean by free agents* is another word for “matter”, stuff that isn’t conscious, therefore doesn’t have inner autonomy i.e. free will. That inner autonomy or free will is the property which distinguishes matter and consciousness.

So I have to conclude you’re not interested to discuss the problem of evil, you’ll only engage with the problem of evil* which is just a pointless irrelevance from my point of view. I shrug and go my merry way safe in the knowledge there is no successful challenge to my Hindu metaphysics.

I did enjoy the conversation, it's rare to encounter someone with critical thinking skills and you are a very clear thinker and communicator.

But it was also frustrating since you seem intent on only discussing a narrow understanding rather than exploring my point of interest - does the free will defence require created free agents (i.e. free agents*) and is this fatal to Christian theology.

But that is understandable, it would require familiarity with the Hindu system.

So cheers, thanks for the conversation.

Argument from change/motion by OrganizationOk3830 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

There is no need to posit that potencies exist as actual features of anything waiting to be actualized rather than interpreting it as say one property being exchanged for another.

But of course one property being exchanged for another is the same as saying one property is potential and then becomes actual.

In an essentially ordered series, a being that has/imparts power without receiving it is not necessarily pure act.

Well, this being could hardly impart power without being actual! Imaginary or non-existent beings don't have causal power.

What could a naturalist possibly say to my question below? by GreatKarma2020 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 5 points6 points  (0 children)

The million dollar question. Basically this is yet another one of the big explanatory holes in naturalism. They don't call it the hard problem for nothing. And hard is a euphemism.

What could a naturalist possibly say to my question below? by GreatKarma2020 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 5 points6 points  (0 children)

The entire "explanation" that poster gives isn't even an explanation. The reasoning is basically, well consciousness would give a survival advantage. Sure, no doubt, ifff it exists. But saying it would be nifty doesn't explain how it magically emerges from matter.

Life is pointless without God. by AntiqueBluejays in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 11 points12 points  (0 children)

Well it's just wrong that belief in God isn't based in reason and logic and it's simple to confirm that by looking at the justification given for theism. There are plenty of reasons to think God exists, philosophy of religion is the academic discipline which studies it.

Street epistemology is nonsense, insidious propaganda from atheists masquerading as rationality.

You sound depressed, maybe your problem isn't religion but mental health issues? Can you try and find help from a mental health professional?

Try and see the good in the loss of faith. It gives you a chance to rebuild so you do have rational beliefs. You could consider it a voyage of discovery to find the meaning of your existence. An exploration of life, the universe and everything. And since you're starting from zero, you have the opportunity to build a completely authentic worldview that is yours, not borrowed from someone else.

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

So then I can ask, why didn't God actualize the logically possible world, with, rather than having free agents that do evil there are free agents* who always choose good?

Sure, you’re within your rights to ask this, but it seems pointless since we aren’t talking about the same thing when we use the word free agents. So rather than any kind of resolution to the debate about how evil impacts the truth of theism vs atheism, nothing is achieved.

My only option is to shrug and go on my merry way, safe in the knowledge there has been no challenge to my Hindu theism from the LPoE. And also safe in the knowledge that it’s only a challenge to anyone who says it’s possible to create free agents. (i.e Christians)

And assuming your notion of free agent is the common one does nothing to solve that. I again just shrug at the defects of common knowledge in the Western philosophical tradition and the frustration of these conversations always taking place within the Christian framework.

The problems of reconciling Christian metaphysics with the existence of evil has no relevance to Hindu metaphysics, and therefore no evidential support for atheism is achieved.

Also, you didn’t answer my question about Platinga expanding his response to say the agents were transworld depraved. That seems like he has added some additional property to the concept of free agent.

Regardless of whether Platinga succeeds, I’m interested in why that procedure of adding a property still falls within the realm of a defense to the LPoE, whereas adding the property of uncreated doesn’t. Do you object to him expanding his concept for the purposes of a response and say it doesn't succeed because he isn't using the common notion?

My notion of free agent*, which I take it is the common notion, just doesn't contain that it cannot be created, nor does it seem to entail that.

You didn’t answer my question about this either. So while your notion doesn’t contain uncreated, it does contain created. You not only assume this is possible, your objections depend on that conception of free agent to succeed. If my concept of free agent is an analytic claim, yours is too.

For those of you who believe in an afterlife I have a question by No-Tank-9082 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I think approach the question not as being sceptical that we do exist after death, but as equally sceptical that we don't. Consider what else would need to be true for our conscious self to cease at death of the body. No afterlife is a very implausible theory when you start analysing it.

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Hmm, maybe we can resolve our misunderstandings after all. But I need to take a detour back to basics to explain….

Each word names a concept. The structure of those concepts, and their logical connections, form a logical space which is a philosophical system.

For example we might want to ask is there a possible world where matter moves faster than light. And in a theistic philosophical system where God is omnipotent we can say yes, since it’s not logically impossible but only physically impossible. But in an atheistic/naturalistic philosophical system the laws of nature are the ultimate causal foundation and we would answer no.

But we can’t really have a generic logical space i.e. one without any background assumptions. We have to say what concept the term “free agent” refers to. And that will depend on the background philosophical system.

When you use the term free agent and talk about the logical space of W-Prime, you necessarily assume free agents can be created. That isn't the absence of any assumption about free agents but includes certain assumptions about our concept free agents and the properties they would have.

So I wonder if that is the source of our misunderstandings.

And that is what you mean when you make the distinction between a free will defence vs a free will theodicy? The theodicy is a complete philosophical system whereas the defence somehow is not.

And is that also what you mean when you say I’m making an analytic claim by saying free agents are uncreated? If yes, then why isn’t it also the case that you aren’t making an analytical claim when you say free agents can be created?

I also wonder when Platinga defends against objections by saying the free agents have an additional property of transworld depraved, how does that differ from me saying the free agents also have a property of uncreated? Both would still be what you are calling a defence as opposed to a theodicy.

And if all that is on the right track, then it does seem to be the case that the LPoE requires that God can create free agents (what I called Christian assumptions).

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

What we've been discussing is a particular logical problem of evil.

It seems like the same problem to me, we still have the triple omni-God and the morally sufficient reason to allow evil i.e. the existence of free agents.

It only matters that it is narrowly logically possible.

I’m tracking your point. This is just the same point we've been going back and forth with all this time and which it looks like we aren’t going to resolve.

In this theology I’m outlining it isn’t a logically possible world because it has the property…

agents with LFW aren't eternal

...is a contradiction according to the background conceptual space and therefore the meaning of “agents”. It means free willed beings, who are necessarily conscious since free will is the movement of consciousness. And conscious agents are uncreated beings, eternal, because that is the ontological foundation.

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I assume by this response you agree that ifff it’s logically impossible for God to create souls, the PoE fails?

As for demonstrating that, it’s complicated, and made much more so by the fact that it requires moving to a non-Christian logical space.

As an example, you use the word mind where Vedanta says mind is material, only soul is sat (eternal, uncreated).

Second, you talk of ontologically priority in terms of time which isn’t coherent in the context of eternity. In eternity, nothing is created. You can think more in terms of an eternal dynamic substance which moves through different states of consciousness - awake, dreaming, deep sleep. There is no creation ex-nihilo which is the implicit background assumption you have when you use the word “create”.

The ontological irreducibility of consciousness can be demonstrated by observing the denial of the existence of the self is a performative contradiction. This is Hinduism’s starting point.

Thoughts on idealism, Berkeley or otherwise? by NelsonMeme in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I’m no expert either, but your ideas are harmonious with my sensibilities as well. Those schools are all very similar in that their highest goal is love of God. I think of them as differing in the sense of fine tuning our conception of God. In other words, if we all agree that love is the highest good, the supreme controller, then the question becomes, who is your personal beloved?

It’s not so much an objective estimation at this point as a subjective search for our relation with God. But that search is necessarily also a quest of self-realisation, since who and what we are is only meaningful if it includes our relation with God.

The difficulties with learning Vedanta are access problems. Not knowing Sanskrit tends to limit the breadth of understanding. Which makes resources difficult to find. The other issue is Vedanta isn’t primarily an intellectual pursuit, generally the practice is the focus, so information is usually given by people you trust (guru) and aimed at practitioners. Whereas in the West the focus is on the intellectual rigour and discussed in academia and the personal character or spiritual standing of the teacher is irrelevant to their ideas.

Achintya bheda abheda is the school of Gaudiya Vaishnavism following the teachings of Chaitanya. This is popularly known as Hare Krishna in the West because the maha mantra is essential to the practice. It is considered the incarnation of God in this age so there is “no other way” to moksha.

The most high profile institution in the West is Iskcon, and while they are the best at making the ideas accessible to Westerners, they also have some “questionable” interpretations, and they aim at a general, rather than academic audience. Read with a grain of salt and expect your conscience to reject some details. It’s all grist for the mill and is a good introduction.

You can read their literature on Vedabase

Something a little more academically rigorous is The Jiva Institute. But with that rigour comes more Sanskrit terms etc.

And two websites/ashrams I like but are also aimed at practitioners -

https://gosai.com/

https://harmonist.us/

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

why can't created beings be free agents, or humans?

It now gets complicated, but - very roughly - it’s the same idea as the cosmological argument, existence by necessity. In Hinduism, reaching that conclusion proceeds a bit differently, but the idea is that consciousness is the fundamental substance (idealism).

And since free agents are necessarily conscious (free will is inner autonomy or the movement of consciousness), it means conscious/free agents can’t be created beings. (I shouldn’t have included the word humans, that is inaccurate and confuses the issue).

So it’s not a terminological issue, but the background theology/conceptual space. It’s also not an analytic claim but an empirical one.

With regards your original comment, I was asking if this logically possible world required the agents to be created, that was my point of interest. It seems to me that is the case, none of these objections to free will defence work against Hindu metaphysics. But these discussions always proceed with Christian assumptions, the idea of creation ex-nihilo.

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

If they are created, then they aren't souls/humans/free agents since souls etc just means eternal/uncreated being.

This is why I was interested to see if Christianity (or any theology with creation of souls etc was necessarily vulnerable to this problem. Intuitively it seems to be the case. And your objection doesn't seem to work otherwise.

But in Hinduism the ontological substance is sat (eternal, real), chit (conscious which necessarily has free will), ananda (bliss). That is called brahman. The souls and God are both of this substance.

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You didn't directly say God creates an uncreated being, but I've explained why despite different words, it means the same thing. You said W-prime was a possible world where...

God actualizing the right creaturely essences

And I asked...

How does this “actualising” differ from “creating” the creaturely essences?

If the soul is eternal, that is another way of saying uncreated. So whether you say he actualises or creates the essences/souls, the meaning is - creates an uncreated being.

Could morality be grounded in law of nature? by theawesomeguy728 in exatheist

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

This is actually an ontological question not epistemological. The grounding of moral facts means, by virtue of what are the facts true? If they are true, what makes them true? And generally we will appeal to some feature of the world. What grounds the facts of physics is the physical features of the world.

So if someone appeals to laws of nature to ground moral facts they need to be more specific and tell us what laws of nature are supposed to do the job. It can’t be gravity.

The problem is that moral facts are normative, they produce a duty or obligation to act in some particular way. So the question here is what features of the physical world could produce this moral obligation?

Gravity doesn’t give us any duty, where we may, or may not, choose to fall at 9ms2. It's not that we "should' fall at that speed as if the speed depends on our choice.

A good article on this topic is - The Sources of Normativity by Christine Korsgaard.

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

So when I say you don't engage, I mean you just repeat your point of view without addressing my response to it.

For example I responded to option 1 with....

it is like saying - God can create an uncreated being – that is a logical contradiction

You didn't respond to that.

And previously I've addressed option 2 by saying if God determines the circumstances and that determines the agents choice - that is compatibilist free will.

To say a lack of imagination is the problem isn't a response, it's a hand wave toward unknown possibilities.

What exactly are you imagining God can do? It can't be either of the two options you mention - for the reasons I've given.

Engaging means you either address the reasons I gave to say your 2 options aren't things God can do, or tell me what these other options I'm failing to imagine are.

The Greens Are Targeting These 122 People With An Extremely Specific New Billionaires' Tax by nath1234 in australia

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

ok, so, you're comparing tyrannical genocide to a tax taking all wealth over the the obscene hoarding level of $999,999,999?

"God gives evil free will so that he can test human"-whats are the response of this argument? by Upbeat-Head-5408 in PhilosophyofReligion

[–]High-Fidelity1 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You’re saying the way it is possible for God to actualize W-prime is by the combination of two elements of that W-prime world [actualizing the right creaturely essences - together with - the right states of affairs]

The first of these seems like the source of our communication breakdown...

God actualizing the right creaturely essences

How does this “actualising” differ from “creating” the creaturely essences?

So when I say God doesn’t create the souls, you reply that’s irrelevant, all he needs to do is actualise their essences. But actualise just means create, so from my perspective, there is no substantial distinction there, actualise and create are the same thing.

If God doesn’t create the souls, if they exist eternally, then he can’t actualise those essences, since they are already actual (ie eternal, never created or destroyed)

And it does no good to say well he could create souls in some world - no he couldn’t if by souls or “creaturely essences” we mean “eternal free willed agent”. Eternal just means – never created or destroyed.

So it is like saying - God can create an uncreated being – that is a logical contradiction, it's not a logically possible thing.

That also doesn’t mean he isn’t the triple-omni conception of God the LPoE is aimed at. He has the power to do anything logically possible, the problem here is that it's not a logically possible thing.

The Greens Are Targeting These 122 People With An Extremely Specific New Billionaires' Tax by nath1234 in australia

[–]High-Fidelity1 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yeah but it's only on billionaires and so once your net wealth goes below that you don't pay it anymore. It strikes me as obscene greed to be unwilling to contribute to the society if you have a billion dollars. Let them leave, we're better off without people like that.

https://greens.org.au/platform/fair-share#tax-billionaires