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More On The Laws of Logic and John 1:1

May 20, 2009

laws of logic

Either the laws of logic are separate from God,

or

the laws of logic were created by God.”

Since John 1:1 says that “and God was the Logos”, thus what God is the Logos is (speaking of the Logos’ nature), this confirms me to believe that the laws of logic are neither axioms which exist as “forms” all by themselves (just as the Logos is not the Father), nor are the laws of logic created by God (just as the Logos is not “a god” created by the Father). Note: for the purposes of this thread, when I say “laws of logic” I am primarily referring to classical logic, and in particular the first law of identity.

But this is extremely profound!!! This philosophical issue which has perplexed countless people for centuries is answered in John 1:1. The very arguments which atheists, Clarkians, and others use to try and say that it must be either/or when accounting for the laws of logic (in particular the law of identity), have left out the only actual possibility: they are a reflection of God’s very own nature. This is not just something the Christian apologist says but can point to from Scripture itself!

(Again, I will use the terms “laws of logic” synonymous with “identities” or “meanings”, since the 3 laws of logic (in classical logic) ultimately stem from the first law, namely, the law of identity – the ability to identify all things with concepts, or meanings. Without meanings nothing can mean anything. Nothing could refer to anything, thus nothing could be known or knowable.)

The laws of logic aren’t simply divine axioms, nor are they inventions of God. They aren’t above God (able to exist independent of God) or below God (something He created). In actuality, the laws of logic are right along side God – a reflection of God’s own mind which is eternal and unchanging.

The “logos” is a Greek word where we get our word “logic” from. The logos was referred to by philosophers for centuries, even before Christ, as that which is the source and derivative of all knowledge, rationality, teleos (meaning), purpose, design, morality, creation, etc. John is writing his gospel to Hellenistic Jews (Jews who were influenced by Greek philosophy). Thus, he explains what, actually WHO, the Logos is. The Greeks believed in an impersonal logos. They’re “logos” was not sufficient. John reveals to them a personal Logos, who is eternal in nature, is eternally in relationship, and is by nature God. It is Jesus Christ. He is outside of time (eternal), is with God, and is God’s own nature and being. It gets even more mind blowing when John mentions that this Logos (Jesus Christ) became “sarx”, or took on human flesh and bone (verse 14). He took on the very nature of His creation which He upholds.

Moving on, if we accept the former idea and say the laws of logic are separate, above, or self-existent from God, then we concede that they do not derive from God, thus God is not needed to account for them. (This is what many try to believe in rejection of Christ – a fulfillment of Rom 1:18-20 and 8:6-8)

If we accept the latter and say the laws of logic are inventions, below, or creations of God then we concede that they can be anything. God could have created them to be whatever He wanted, thus could re-invent them. Further, some say we invented them, thus why couldn’t we re-invent them or destroy them? Yet, then meanings would forever be subject to change and not even God or us would have a sure basis to know anything for certain. For example it could be said that 1=2=3 and so forth.

So why can’t meanings exist by themselves? Why can’t they be self-sufficient, self-existent, or exist independent of a mind, whether God’s or ours? Well for one, how would we detect them? Meanings are immaterial. They are abstract, or non-physical. We can’t detect them with our 5 senses. Thus, if they exist independent of God and us, how does God or anyone else detect them? If they can’t be detected with the 5 senses then how do we locate them and find them in order to use them?

Second, if we could somehow locate these abstract entities which exist independent of minds, how then would these meanings get inside people’s minds? Would God or we go shopping for them and say “I need the meaning of “addition” (so that I can check out when I’m done buying all these), and I need the number “2”, etc.” What would apply them to God’s mind or our mind? And if we are purely physical (which Naturalists believe) then how could abstract meanings get into us? How could they get into our minds which are believed to only be physical? How do non-marbles get inside something only comprised of marbles? Especially when those “marbles” are absolute (can’t change) meaning there’s something outside of the finite forever determining what they are! Human pre-commitment to logic is proof that the eternal effects the finite. We are finite, yet use eternal a-priori, namely, the laws of logic.

That which is eternal, must by definition be part of God’s own nature which is eternal, thus is prescriptive and cannot change. Meanings (the laws of logic) would fall into this category, as well as a real morality. All humans live like these exist and do so consistently and universally. Both meanings and real morality are absolute. Meanings cannot change, hence why 1+1 always equals 2 and why selfishly hating someone is always evil. Each are a reflection of God’s own being, hence why they are absolute, prescriptive, and eternal truths which will never change and can never change.

So in conclusion to the first point, why don’t meanings exist independent of God? Contrary to what atheists are trying to say today, meanings do not derive from manifestations of nature or matter. In other words, saying that because one has the ability to use their 5 senses in regard to matter, distinguish between sizes, shapes, colors dimensions, etc, then one can automatically categorize things by themselves – thus logic forms on its own. But watch closely. This is only answering how to categorize things, thus is assuming the existence of meanings by which things can be distinguished, thus categorized! In other words, the meaning of existence must exist, the meaning of “thereness” must exist so you know that something is there, the meaning of color must exist so you can then begin to distinguish colors, the meaning of height must exist in order to distinguish sizes, etc. Nice try Mr. Atheist in trying to say that the laws of logic evidence themselves because of our ability to distinguish between things. You first must have meanings before you can even begin to categorize things, hence being able to identify an apple, tree, or dog. You see, you must have the meaning of size, shape, texture, color, etc exist before you can distinguish things by using those meanings, thus begin to categorize things such as apple, tree, or dog!

Scripture accounts for this because all humans are created with bodies and spirits (dualism), not just with physical bodies (monism). We are created in the likeness of God who eternally thinks logically and is eternally active in using all possible meanings, as He is omniscient. So because human nature come from other natures which bare the image of God, then the capacity to use logic is passed down through humans. This is why we don’t go searching for logic, because it is part of our nature, as our nature is part of God’s nature, and logic is part of God’s nature. Meanings are not something that God carries around in a cosmic bag, but are reflections of His own eternal unchanging knowledge and thinking.

Now on to the second point. What about saying that God or we created the laws of logic or meanings? What if a being were to have created the laws of logic. Well for one it would have no basis to know what it was creating! It would be like a non-conscious thing trying to create the reality of consciousness itself without 1. even knowing what consciousness is, and 2. consciousness ever having existed! In other words, how can something mindless make itself mindful, when one needs a mind to know it could use a mind?!

Basically, how can 1. a blank computer program itself, and 2. do so considering there is no such thing as computer code? This is the real dilemma we would face if we were to say that God or us created the laws of logic and meanings.

And again, as I stated above, we can’t say that God or us created or invented meanings because that would mean we could destroy them or re-invent them. This would be impossible because then we could destroy all numbers or say that 1=2=3 and so forth.

In conclusion, since the laws of logic are tantamount of the Logos (which our modern word “logic” derives from) then they are part of God’s own nature, as the Logos is part of God’s own nature. If we say that God must obey the laws of logic, then we are just saying that God acts according to His own nature. Of course He does! He’s eternal, immutable, and holy according to Scripture. Whether we say God obeys the laws of logic or that the laws of logic obey God doesn’t matter. One is not above the other, nor are they separate. Logic is just a description of the prescriptive Logos (because He’s eternal).

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21 comments

  1. Nonsense. The “laws of logic” are purely a creation of humanity, a set of rules by which we have found the universe works. Nothing more.


  2. Thanks for your comment Shamelessly Atheist. By the way, can you explain how your worldview accounts for the reality of “shame”?

    In my article I use the terms ‘laws of logic’ synonymously with ‘meanings’. We created meanings? So we created the meaning of “addition”? So we can then create it to mean something else or destroy this meaning?


  3. Shamelessly Atheist, it’s been 6 days and you haven’t responded to me. Either you’re too busy because of the holiday or there’s some other reason. However, if you don’t ever respond then I’m going to assume you concede to my questions above.

    I don’t blame you why you wouldn’t want to respond however. As Blaise Pascall said, “Atheism shows strength of mind, but only to a certain degree.”


  4. i’m back….to respond on shamelessly atheist’s behalf.

    it’s easy to account for shame. it a frame of mind triggered by an emotional response to objectively observable cause and effect relationships in the real world.

    of course we could destroy the representational language that we use to more easily process quantity.

    try this, the best way i’ve seen it described in a very simple way.

    “reality is logical but logic is not real.”

    without material, you don’t have the concept of logic which is just a word representation of material relationships.


  5. Cirri, like theists, atheists have many different worldviews. My question was specifically to HIM as to how HE accounts for “shame” within his worldview.

    I am already familiar with your worldview because we have dialogued so much already. But I don’t mind getting into it again with you.

    So since “shame” is just brain gas then it’s nothing we should take seriously. It’s just an arbitrary chemical reaction. And Cirri, experts in this field disagree as to which comes first, the “emotion” or the “neuron firing”. No one is for sure about which one is really the cause and which one is the effect. We do know that they both correlate together. Also, some people have the same chemical reaction yet act different and feel different. So many chemical reactions and emotions are subjective from person to person. Only in the Christian worldview should we take shame seriously because there is a God whom we are really and ultimately accountable to and we are moral creatures created in His image, thus feel shame in our spirits.

    I agree we could destroy representational language. But that wasn’t my statement Cirri. I specifically said we cannot destroy meanings, nor can we create them. The representational language only refers to the meaning. It is not the meaning itself.

    reality is logic but logic is not reality This makes no sense, and if it means what I think it might mean then it all the more makes no sense. Again, I’m using logic synonymously with “meanings”. They are the starting point to the laws of logic (classical logic – which is required to know anything).

    Logic (at least meanings) cannot be contingent upon the material because you first need meanings to exist before you can identify the material, or even the non-material. It’s a chicken or the egg question. Which must come first? Meanings or material in order to have meanings? Meanings must come first. Without meanings you can’t identify that something exists, how tall it is, what color it is, etc. Cirri, show me how you destroy meanings and how you create them to mean something else.


  6. absolutely wrong. the idea that shame is just “brain gas” is a conceptual creation. you need to account for why anyone should adhere to your definition for shame, which must necessarily incorporate additional defining characteristics compatible with a theistic world view. we defined shame based on nothing more than our experiences and relationships with objective cause and effect relationships. it truly means something in this world because this is where it applies, along with meaning.

    understand that differing chemical/emotional states between people are only subjective in the sense that an individual is experiencing it. they are wholly objective in the sense that they can be defined and controlled regardless of the individual. if you want to claim otherwise then please present one single sourced example of a human that is unaffected by manipulation of the brains emotional control centers.

    in a christian worldview your shame is the result of a choice to bend your will to a higher subjective power and thus becomes a meaningless platitude rather than the result of a real relationaship with another human. other humans are an afterthought to the ultimate subjective moral force. if it was gods will you would murder and feel no shame. this worldview requires that you reliquish your moral autonomy and give up the true meaning of words like “shame”, as they apply to the objective world on which they are based, in favor of a new definition of “shame” which has meaning only within the context of the theistic ideology you serve.

    think about the wrod meaning. now, think about the idea of absolutely no sentient being having ever exiswted. the universe would just be. it would just exist without meaning. we invented meaning. to represent to ourselves the way in which the universe exists. without us, a rock doesn’t have a name, let alone a meaning.

    it makes complete sense. stop using logic synonymously with meaning. without a mind to represent the concept of logic there is absolutely no reference point from which to claim that there would be logic. there would just be a universe that exists as it exists with no menaing. thus logic would not exist. it’s a concept that we use to represent the way in which the universe exists. the unic=verse isn’t logic, though. that’s just how we are able to make sense of it.

    that’s highly circular and quite solipsist. it’s not always about us. you’re only saying that because it’s what we need to identify the material. take sentience out of the picture and what we get is a universe that just exists and all that we would consider logic is just the way in which it exists and if you remove the universe, if we’re talking about nothingness then that way in which the universe existed, what we refer to as logical, disappears. thus, logic is contingent on material.


  7. you need to account for why anyone should adhere to your definition for shame

    Well ummm, because I believe shame is a reality, not just brain gas. It is a reality in my worldview because there are really things which we ought not do, thus if we do them, we should feel shame.

    I agree with you that you experience shame, but no one has directly observed it. No one can observe subjective experience. My worldview also accounts for why you experience it, but all the more after experiencing it why it is a reality.

    they are wholly objective in the sense that they can be defined and controlled regardless of the individual. if you want to claim otherwise then please present one single sourced example of a human that is unaffected by manipulation of the brains emotional control centers.

    I agree they’re objective in this sense, but emotions ought not be taken seriously in your worldview. They are just brain gas. That’s it. You shouldn’t listen to your farts anymore then your head.

    if it was gods will you would murder and feel no shame.

    This is strawman argumentation. If you had read my post carefully you would see that real morality is a reflection of God’s own eternal character, similar to the laws of logic. God did not invent what is “good” or “bad”.

    we invented meaning

    So I’m still waiting for you to explain how we can invent meanings to mean different things and how we can destroy meanings, since we originally created them. Further, we require meanings to first exist before we can even set out to intentionally invent/create something.

    Most of your writing is hard to follow. Can you write your arguments in more basic terms?


  8. i’ll try to drop it down a notch;)

    my point regarding shame is that you define it differently than me and that your definition is based on an assumption that what we do means something beyond this physical world. my definition of shame assumes nothing and is based wholly on objective, cause and effect relationships. your world view requires that you create additional defining characteristics, for instance, that if there is no god then shame is just “brain gas”. this is an additional defining constraint that you alone have added, that you have given meaning and that is based entirely on your subjective world view. i give shame no further definition than is in websters dictionary. i recognize that shame is an emotional state that is part of objective cause and effect relationships and that the only ingredient necessary for it is a certain level of sentience.

    again, the idea that emotions ought not be taken seriously in my world view is one that you have manufactured for yourself or that was introduced to you by others, such as craig and the like, who have manufactured it for themselves and the benefit of their religion. it’s an idea that is patently false for anyone who’s worth their salt knows that it is vitally important how a person lives emotionally. it can mean life or death, pleasure or pain, to procreate or not to procreate. many cause and effect relationships that humans encounter daily are directly affected by emotional states and it would be ridiculous for anyone not to take them seriously.

    it’s not a straw man. god falls pray to the position you’re taking against materialism much more easily than materialism does. truly, regardless of whether or not god made morality or he is morality actualized(which is quite a strange concept indeed) you are still stuck with being required to forfeit your moral autonomy to follow him. this leaves you with no reference point from which to claim that god is, what we who do have moral autonomy, would consider moral. you could be following a despot who is forcing you to believe he is moral simply because your will is no longer the compass. “not my will but thine”.

    i’m a little confused by you r question on how we can invent and destroy meanings. it seems obvious to me that this has happened with certain things over the years., granted, all that come to mind are conceptual things rather than objects but it seems to make sense that we would keep the same terminology for objects for as long as possible. as far as conceptual things, the term “gay” comes to mind. the original meaning has been effectively destroyed, though i’m sure a few still use it to mean happy.

    i guess i’ll try to make it more clear. think of a rock. now this is tricky but try to think of it in the context of a universe with no sentient life. how could the rock possibly have meaning? it doesn’t. it just is what it is. it takes a mind to give it meaning simply because meanings are only applicable to a mind.


  9. this is an additional defining constraint that you alone have added, that you have given meaning and that is based entirely on your subjective world view.

    Shame is just brain gas in your worldview, not anything to take seriously. Thus, it’s an arbitrary statement to say “I’m shameless”. It’s like saying, “I’m brain gas-less”. Thus, there is really no such thing as “shame”, but just the illusion of shame in the form of brain gas.

    With God in the picture, where there is a real morality with real rights and real wrongs, shame is more then brain gas, hence why shame is a reality.

    You don’t take your farts seriously and listen to them, but you should listen to brain gas? Why?

    Why is God as actualized morality strange to you? Give a reason instead of making me make you explain yourself all the time.

    Moral autonomy? What is this supposed to mean? Do you mean morals derived from individual opinion?

    The original meaning of gay has not been destroyed, only a different word has been used to commonly refer to it now. Bottom line, meanings cannot be created or destroyed. They are abstract and absolute, thus part of God own nature.

    I agree with you that meanings are only applicable to a mind. And since they are abstract and absolute, they are eternal and they are prescriptive, thus come from God’s eternal mind. An eternal mind is the precondition for absolute meanings. I call that “God”. And I believe that God happens to be Yahweh. Something absolute and prescriptive cannot be finite.

    And “rock” is a categorization made up of multiple meanings, hence “size”, “color”, “texture”, etc. Even such meanings and categorizations must come from a mind, and since the meanings are absolute, then they come from an eternal mind.


  10. no. you’re not getting it. shame is a response(sometimes necessary)within onjective cause and effects relationships. you’re attempt to minimize this is completely subjective and not based on anything but your world view, thus you presuppose it, starting with your assumption rather than what actually exists, objectively.

    in my view, shame has a real meaning rather than one that is contingent on an uncontrollable subjective force, god. shame, in my world has a very real and very objective meaning to the vast majority of humans. you have failed to show otherwise and are content to defer back to your unfounded “brain gas” theory. it’s pretty amusing, in a way, that you compare to flatulence. you see, even this function can be taken very seriously by humans and in some cases should. a very astute human would listen to the very many ways that their body can communicate, even with flatulence.

    i challenge you to fully and cohesively explain anything fully actualized, which would require no potential. that’s why it’s a strange concept, because it’s easy to use phrases like that because they seem deep and intelligent but can you really explain with any clarity what exactly that would entail? i’ll give you an example of a real pure actuality with no potential. the past. it is fully actual, it happened, it is immutable, we can’t change it and has no potential, it’s gone.

    moral autonomy is the ability of an individual to act ethically with independence, to decide using their own will what is the best moral action to take. this is what we, including you generally work with on a day to day basis. the concept that you claim to adhere to is, ironically enough, not the concept that you generally function with.

    you’re confusing meaning with state of being. you didn’t do the exercise, did you, of imaging the universe without sentience? if you can’t do this you’ll always approach objects from the perspective of how we relate to them, not how they are. without the mind, any mind, including a divine one, they just are and have no meaning.

    and it doesn’t follow to assume that they are infinite. our mental relation to them is abstract but also dies with us. what something is, in a sense , is absolute but inly until it is not. if all humans died, what we are would no longer be absolute. until that point, we are what we are absolutely but not eternally.

    and even if you could get to meanings being absolute(which you can’t) you would have to show your work for how you would get to eternal from there because it just doesn’t follow.


  11. Yes, it’s objective brain gas. In my worldview, it’s objective shame and is a reality, not an illusion produced by neuron firings because it’s more then brain gas. In my worldview, shame is an emotion of the soul, which happens to correlate to the physical brain.

    i challenge you to fully and cohesively explain anything fully actualized

    Just because I can’t exhaustively explain God doesn’t mean it’s a strange concept. That’s making an unnecessary inference. How does a light turn on? By the light switch. That’s a rational conclusion. I don’t need to explain everything that happens at the sub-atomic level for the light to go on, because no one can. And even if I didn’t believe in God, I would still be an honest philosopher to say that there must be an eternal unchanging standard which defines all that is good, before there can be a real morality.

    And your moral autonomy is exactly what I thought it was. That doesn’t account for there being actions which we really ought to do as opposed to not do. Like our previous discussions, “all is permissable”. Remember, that’s what you even agreed upon before.

    I’m not talking about things having meanings in the sense of purposes. I’m not sure where you’re going with your arguments. You’ll have to clarify more. I’m talking about meanings existing in the sense of what something means, like what “addition” means, what “existence” means, what “something” means, what “means” means, etc.

    You’re all over the place with your last 2 paragraphs and your previous reply in regards to the nature of “meanings”. In stead of jumping into it all and writing a paper for you I’m going to stick with one thing at a time. Let’s start with meanings being absolute. I’m saying they are absolute. For instance, the meaning of “addition” absolutely means “addition”. It won’t change and mean something else later like “subtraction”.


  12. reality – That which exists objectively and in fact

    how do you get to your conclusion, that shame is “objective brain gas” and not real when the very definition of real necessitates that shame is real, regardless of religious beliefs. you haven’t shown your work here at all. you’ve brazenly asserted that well, there’s your only necessary existent.


  13. well, uh just spent half an hour replying and for some reason it cut out everything but the first and last sentences. meh, i’ll have to get to it later


  14. I like your short replies better anyways.

    I’m saying that gas is a real thing, but it does not point to any greater reality or truth other than gas. In other words, to be “shameless” first assumes the existence of “shame”. To have shame be more then brain gas, and be a reality, there needs to be a worldview by which someone should do something, really be held accountable to do it, fail to do it, thus be in an actual state of shame by not upholding what they’re really accountable to. Atheism can’t account for this criterion, thus Shamelessly Atheist should change his name to “blah blah Atheist” or “certain types of brain gas-less atheist”.

    you haven’t shown your work here at all. you’ve brazenly asserted that well, there’s your only necessary existent.

    All I can understand out of this is the “you haven’t shown your work” part. Can you try to speak English? And I haven’t shown my work for which claim?


  15. ummm, if you care to notice, i mentioned that my post was spliced so it won’t make sense. your little quip asking me to “try and speak english” is referring to a jumble of different sentences that were the result of whatever happened when i hit the post button.

    you charge me with having to assume that shame exists in order to be shameless. i couldn’t disagree more. you see, shame exists objectively, regardless of any additional defining constraints that you attempt to attach to it. shame is an emotional response, or an effect of a cause. it is evidently linked to our ethical value systems that have evolved with us throughout time. it has a purpose and a meaning that both function quite nicely without ever needing the assistance of a god or platonic truth.

    now, i charge that you must assume the existence of something more than our current existence in order to incorporate these additional(and unnecessary) defining constraints. you must assume that there is either a platonic greater good and a platonic shame or that there is a god that encompasses all of this.
    none of this is objective. which is why you are a presuppositionalist. it’s kind of funny that being one, you would charge me with assuming the existence of shame.

    by the way, an honest philosopher would not say that there needs to be an eternal unchanging standard that defines good in order for there to be a real morality. all that we need for a real morality are beings like us who act and react and are able to assess cause and effect relationships and are able to represent these relationships with language, ie. a word like morality. that requires no presupposition and is as real as you can get. for you to claim it’s only real if it’s based on an eternal standard is nothing more than an assumption that an eternal standard exists and is applicable to morality. drop your assumption of “greater reality” and then form an argument or else stop trying to charge(incorrectly) your opponent with aruing from assumption.

    how do we get to ought? very easily.

    – a car has a friction system that requires lubricant in the form of oil

    – oil is necessary for a car to remain functioning

    – if one wants their car to remain functioning then one ought to regulate the oil level in their car

    or

    – a human has an emotional system that requires love

    – love is necessary for the emotional system to function properly

    – if one wants a human to have a properly functioning emotional system then one ought to give the human love.

    there is an easy way to get to ought in a material view. it looks a things as they are not as they are contrived to be according to a religious ideal that has no objective basis. and that is real. much more real than an imaginary standard that we must adhere to for the standards sake rather than actually building loving relationships based on reality and what we know is best for us.

    you may argue that “what if one “prefers” that the human emotional system does not function properly” and that’s a fair question but easily answered. nearly all humans, based on their own ability to assess cause and effect relationships, realize that love is needed to be healthy. this isn’t a preference any more than the need to eat is a preference.

    meanings – addition isn’t a meaning. it’s a method of representing quantity. we as humans and other animals measure quantity. if there were no quantity measuring creatures then the only quantity would be all things. there would be no distinction between 5 rocks and a billion rocks. the universe would just be. what do humans mean? how is that meaning eternal? it’s not, unless you first assume that there is an eternal mind that will eternally process the idea of humanity. this, again, is beginning with your conclusion.

    i agree with you in one small sense that what it is to be a human, or for your sake, the meaning of humanity, is absolute. what we are, we are absolutely but only until we are not. then what we are is no longer absolute because we no longer exist. to claim anything else you necessarily need to first assume your conclusion, an eternal mind and that’s a whole other argument. but for now, starting with your conclusion defies logic.

    and real quick i want to say that it’s important for you to be able to give a cohesive and internally consistent explanation for your god and the idea of “pure actuality” only because you’ve claimed that logic is on your side. if you claim this then it’s your responsibility to thoroughly define what you are arguing for before the debate even begins. otherwise you are admitting to speculation or in other words, you are showing us all that you are what all theists are, when you get right down to it, agnostics. you don’t know what your god is.


  16. and real quick i want to say that it’s important for you to be able to give a cohesive and internally consistent explanation for your god and the idea of “pure actuality” only because you’ve claimed that logic is on your side.

    No, if anything finite or created exists (actually exists) then an eternal un-caused cause exists. Otherwise, you’d have an infinite amount of causes and we wouldn’t be here yet. I call that un-caused cause Christ.

    And I’m not accounting for logic in order to account for “pure actuality”, although they are somewhat related because logic is part of what is actual. More specifically I am saying that something such as abstract absolute meanings can’t derive from the worldview of Naturalism, thus proving why my worldview is internally more consistent and coherent.

    addition isn’t a meaning

    “Addition” means nothing then? Then why did you bother to tell me that “addition” means nothing, since addition doesn’t mean anything. So ? means nothing. That’s what you’re necessarily implying.

    the universe would just be

    yes this is the consistent outworking of Naturalism. But since you know this isn’t the case, you’re assuming truths of my worldview.

    an honest philosopher would not say that there needs to be an eternal unchanging standard that defines good in order for there to be a real morality. all that we need for a real morality are beings like us who act and react and are able to assess cause and effect relationships and are able to represent these relationships with language, ie. a word like morality.

    No, an honest philosopher wouldn’t try to say that we should behave a certain way, and then simultaneously say that all is permissable like you. I know even agnostics who believe that there must be an eternal standard.

    Your example with the car needing oil with regards to accounting for how something “ought” to be the case is not analogous to accounting for meanings. It is a good try though. There’s a difference between prescribing what is descriptive (finite), and describing what is prescriptive (absolute/eternally unchanging). You’re prescribing something which hasn’t always been prescribed. With meanings, they are always the case (thus are prescriptive), or they eternally must be what they are independent of us, not just because we arrive and determine what things should mean (making meanings finite and created).

    Meanings are absolute, thus can’t change and weren’t invented. If they could change or were invented then the whole system falls apart like I point out in my article above.


  17. and real quick i want to say that it’s important for you to be able to give a cohesive and internally consistent explanation for your god and the idea of “pure actuality” only because you’ve claimed that logic is on your side.

    “No, if anything finite or created exists (actually exists) then an eternal un-caused cause exists. Otherwise, you’d have an infinite amount of causes and we wouldn’t be here yet. I call that un-caused cause Christ.”

    what you have here is another head game. there is absolutely no reason to believe that an infinite regress is impossible. you are presuming that our sense of time being a linear experience is representative for how time actually behaves when we know that “before” the big bang event the laws of physics as we know them did not apply. so, rather than using a philosophical thought experiment, how about you actually prove, mathematically that infinite regress yields an actual contradiction. if you do, you might just be the first person to refute non standard analysis, the system that enabled the incorporation of infinite and infinitesimal numbers into modern mathematics.

    “And I’m not accounting for logic in order to account for “pure actuality”, although they are somewhat related because logic is part of what is actual. More specifically I am saying that something such as abstract absolute meanings can’t derive from the worldview of Naturalism, thus proving why my worldview is internally more consistent and coherent.”

    and i’m saying that there aren’t abstract absolute meanings. there are just existents and how they exist.

    addition isn’t a meaning

    “Addition” means nothing then? Then why did you bother to tell me that “addition” means nothing, since addition doesn’t mean anything. So ? means nothing. That’s what you’re necessarily implying.”

    there’s a difference between “isn’t a meaning” and “has no meaning” the word has a meaning. the concept has a meaning but addition itself is not a meaning.

    the universe would just be

    “yes this is the consistent outworking of Naturalism. But since you know this isn’t the case, you’re assuming truths of my worldview.”

    i do know that this is the case in the grandest sense. for the majority of time as we know it, humans did not exist so it’s logical to reject a solipsist position. again, you must necessarily use objective reality to argue any position, so you are assuming all that my world view entails to argue for a position that refutes it. it’s a self refuting argument.

    an honest philosopher would not say that there needs to be an eternal unchanging standard that defines good in order for there to be a real morality. all that we need for a real morality are beings like us who act and react and are able to assess cause and effect relationships and are able to represent these relationships with language, ie. a word like morality.

    “No, an honest philosopher wouldn’t try to say that we should behave a certain way, and then simultaneously say that all is permissable like you. I know even agnostics who believe that there must be an eternal standard.”

    bottom line, all is permissible. next step, we create an ethical system, a system of value based on our ability to observe and assess cause and effect relationships. that doesn’t mean that an individual doesn’t have the ability to act against a societal moral system. individuals allow themselves to act as they please and they will generally reap the consequences. sometimes they don’t reap outward consequences but these exceptions do not negate the objective fact that humans create moral systems based on observable cause and effect relationships.

    “Your example with the car needing oil with regards to accounting for how something “ought” to be the case is not analogous to accounting for meanings. It is a good try though. There’s a difference between prescribing what is descriptive (finite), and describing what is prescriptive (absolute/eternally unchanging). You’re prescribing something which hasn’t always been prescribed. With meanings, they are always the case (thus are prescriptive), or they eternally must be what they are independent of us, not just because we arrive and determine what things should mean (making meanings finite and created).”

    like i’ve already said, you’re presupposing that morality is eternal and absolute. it’s not. it applies to us. that’s why we created the word to describe a specific human relationship. the universe is impartial and does not change because you presuppose that there will eventually be a measurement of all things.

    “Meanings are absolute, thus can’t change and weren’t invented. If they could change or were invented then the whole system falls apart like I point out in my article above.”

    meanings are only absolute in the sense that as long as A exists it will be A and can not be not A. that’s it. if you can show me one other entity to which the word meaning applies then maybe you have a basis for your argument. but you can’t because we are the entities that first uttered the word meaning, that first uttered any word in order to represent what things are to us and how they exist. there is no metaphysical, eternal land of “red” that gives rise to the actual color of “red” and gives it meaning. “red” is the result of a specific relationship between light and matter. it is existents existing as they exist and the meaning of the color red applies only to beings who use “meaning”.


  18. how about you actually prove, mathematically that infinite regress yields an actual contradiction.

    how about you prove that it doesn’t. You can’t because our Universe is a closed system. All your left with is thought experiments. Scientists believe that time as we know it came into existence after the Universe began. Either way, you still can’t have an infinite amount of causes, so I am proving this mathamatical. Otherwise we’d have to wait for an infinite amount of causes to go by. Did they go by at the same time to you? Have you proven this?

    there are just existents and how they exist.

    They exist because they exist? That’s not an explanation my friend, that is circular reasoning. Meanings aren’t abstract? So they’re physical? And I’ve already given reasons for why they must be absolute. You’ve only offered, “there are just existents and how they exist.” Whatever that sloppy sentence actually means.

    humans create moral systems based on observable cause and effect relationships.

    no one said they didn’t. They point I’ve spoon fed you with a thousand times is that they do so arbitrarily because no one is more right then anyone else. If all is permissable in the end, then there’s no real reason to listen to people’s made up rules for society.

    the universe is impartial and does not change because you presuppose that there will eventually be a measurement of all things.

    Here’s another sloppy sentence I can’t fully understand because I didn’t take a ‘how to understand Cirri’s sentences’ 101 class. I think you mean that I said things are true because I preuppose them to be. That’s your filter. Rather, we live like things are true and absolute, like morality and logic, and what I presuppose epistimelogically comports and accounts for what we call reality, and what you presuppose does not. That’s my point. Hopefully you see that this time around.

    you must necessarily use objective reality to argue any position, so you are assuming all that my world view entails to argue for a position that refutes it. it’s a self refuting argument.

    Part of objective reality entails using objective meanings to make an objective statement or argument. This ties into meanings being absolute, which you reject for some reason and haven’t given a reason why. Otherwise, meanings aren’t objective, thus I have no reason to percieve you saying anything but “blah blah blah”, as well as yourself. This is why you’re borrowing from my worldview. If there is a God, objectivity can be a reality because objective absolutes can be accounted for.

    You’re conceding to my argument against your car example because 1. you changed the subject, and 2. haven’t offered anything. With that previous example all you did was prescribe a description instead of account for something already prescriptive. Concepts and meanings must already be prescriptive because they are absolute.

    Just because we uttered to word “meaning” doesn’t mean that we gave it meaning! You even said before that meanings only exist in a mind. Since they are abstract and absolute (which you haven’t refuted yet) then they eternally exist in a mind (which I call God’s mind). Addition is not a physical object, yet we have the meaning “addition”. You said that concepts are meanings, hence the concept of “addition” is a meaning. I agree with you. That’s what I’ve been saying. I didn’t know I had to be a pedantic jerk to make you happy so I skipped that part, which should have already been assumed in my argument. So let’s start this all over for Cirri. The concept of “addition” is abstract and must be absolute in order to really mean and always mean “addition”.

    Our conversation is going no where again. I’ve even seen non-Christians who are agnostic that believe most of my points and would reject your attempts to account for what you percieve as reality. You’ve had your shot to be convincing. No more posts from you on this thread please. Let other people have a turn, and stop butting in for them with your repititious and empty arguments.

    It’s been a pleasure. Thanks.


  19. 🙂


  20. Cameron – God is fictitious. You think a fable created logic? Shame? Morals? Can you get lost in any more old arguments? These are old beat horses. You can not even prove the bible is real, let alone your God. Shouldn’t you get hopping on that?


  21. Where did I say that God created logic? Either 1. your not interested in dealing with what I’m actually saying or 2. you need glasses, or 3. you need a better prescription. In fact, saying that God created logic is the very opposite thing I say in my article above!!!

    And you say the Bible is false. Thanks for your opinion. My opinion is that it’s true and reliable, especially because we have more NT manuscript evidence which is also more consistent then any other ancient manuscripts from antiquity. Even agnostic scholar Bart Ehrman believes that Jesus historically existed.



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