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Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 10:21 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;108841 wrote:
X disbelieves in God implies that X does not believe in God (although not conversely).

That is exactly what I meant.

B (~G) > ~B (G). But not conversely.


I think I misunderstood. When you said implied, for some reason I thought "equates to". But you did not mean "equates to". Sorry.

fast wrote:

I don't know anything about multiple Gods--multiple gods, maybe, but not multiple Gods, so this talk of X God and Y God is foreign to me.


You are not aware that multiple notions of God exist? Or, if you are, you believe that we are always speaking about the same thing (regardless what we call it)? This is a tricky one, and is more of a spiritual question than anything. I don't think this is necessarily true.

It may be the case that one believes the Abrahamic God exists, but doesn't believe Krishna, the Hindu God, exists. B(Ga) & ~B(Gh)
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 10:28 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;108805 wrote:
Why can I not both believe that it is true that God exists, and believe that God does not exist? Can't I have inconsistent believings? People often seem to. In fact, the psychologists call that, "cognitive dissonance".


This is what I have been claiming. Maybe you should pay more attention when reading my posts.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 05:30 PM ----------

kennethamy;108841 wrote:
X disbelieves in God implies that X does not believe in God (although not conversely).

That is exactly what I meant.

B (~G) > ~B (G). But not conversely.


But this is false. It is possible to believe that there is no God, and to believe that there is a God. This is inconsistent, but that's not a problem for its possibility.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 05:33 PM ----------

Zetherin;108839 wrote:
This is what you wrote exactly:



My interpretation of this is ~B(G). My interpretation is not B(~G). For if you meant B(~G), I would expect you to write, "X believes that God does not exist", or something to that effect. Do you think I am wrong to expect this?

Fast, you are correct that it is ambiguous. I would just hope that on a philosophy forum we can provide clarification -- that's all I'm trying to do Smile

Very interesting topic indeed.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 10:45 AM ----------



I just think it's important we keep it written out formally. Because, for isntance, a person that believes that X God does not exist could believe that Y God exists. The way you have it written out is ambiguous, as it is not always assumed we are speaking of the same God.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 10:35 am
@Emil,
Emil;108851 wrote:
This is what I have been claiming. Maybe you should pay more attention when reading my posts.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 05:30 PM ----------



But this is false. It is possible to believe that there is no God, and to believe that there is a God. This is inconsistent, but that's not a problem for its possibility.


Logical inconsistencies are not possible. Of course, that is not to say they do not occur. To say that P entails that Q is to say that P & ~Q is not logically possible. Of course, one may believe it is logically possible.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 10:39 am
@fast,
Emil wrote:


Interesting. I would mean ~B(G). I use "disbelief" to mean "refusal or reluctance to believe." A refusal to believe doesn't necessarily imply that I believe that the thing I'm refusing to believe in, doesn't exist. I suppose it can, though. For instance, I could simply not believe my mother is in the kitchen, but I may also imply that I believe my mother is not in the kitchen. This, again, is why it's ambiguous.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 10:40 am
@ACB,
ACB;108787 wrote:
I agree that to say someone believes something inconsistent is not a contradiction. However, I wonder whether it is in fact psychologically possible to believe that God does not exist and that God does exist at the same time. Does the idea of such a belief even make sense?

Of course, it is possible for someone to say (falsely) that he/she believes both that God does not exist and that he exists. It is also possible to say (truthfully) that one believes God exists in one sense but does not exist in another. Another possibility is to hold two beliefs, one implying that God exists and the other implying he does not, but fail to be aware of those implications. But could anyone honestly believe, explicitly and without qualification, that God both does and does not exist?


Are you familiar with dialetheism? It is the view that there are true contradictions. People that accept dialetheism accept pure contradictions. Graham Priest (the author of the SEP article and some recent books defending dialetheism), for instance, thinks that the liar paradox ("This sentence is false") is both true and false. Could a person not believe something similar with theism? That it is both true and false? I think so. Someone may even do it.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 05:41 PM ----------

Zetherin;108856 wrote:
Interesting. I would mean ~B(G). I use "disbelief" to mean "refusal or reluctance to believe."


Yes, that is a common usage of it. Philosophers tend to use it like I do. Quine, for instance, did.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 05:44 PM ----------

kennethamy;108855 wrote:
Logical inconsistencies are not possible. Of course, that is not to say they do not occur. To say that P entails that Q is to say that P & ~Q is not logically possible. Of course, one may believe it is logically possible.


The marked text above is inconsistent. I think you meant to say this:
[INDENT]Logical inconsistencies are not possible. Of course, that is not to say that belief in them do not occur.[/INDENT]
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 10:48 am
@Emil,
Emil;108851 wrote:

Oh, I didn't know that. I thought you held it the other way. My mistake. You'd think I'd know your position by now. Oh well. Life goes on.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 10:49 am
@fast,
fast;108822 wrote:
Ann has many beliefs, and one of the many beliefs she has is that God exists, so it is not the case that she lacks belief that God exists. I denote that as B(G)-belief that God exists.

Bob has many beliefs, and one of the many beliefs he has is that God does not exist, so it the case that Bob (just like Ann) has a belief beyond that of other beliefs, and I denote that as B(~G)-belief that God does not exist.

Charlie, like both Ann and Bob, has many beliefs, but Charlie, unlike Bob, does not believe that God does not exist, yet he doesn't believe that God exists either. He lacks the believe that God exists, so he no such belief that Bob has. I denote that as ~B(G).

Dan, just like Charlie, lacks the belief that God exists, but in addition to that, he also lacks the Belief that God does not exist. I denote that as ~B(~G).

In summary, we have: 1) B(G), 2 B(~G), 3 ~B(G), and 4) ~B(~G).

As I said earlier, there is a difference between not believe and believe not. The former lacks a belief, and the latter has a belief, so in terms of beliefs (or lack thereof), the former (not believe) is associated with 3 or 4, and the latter (believe not) is associated with 2.

When I hear that someone denies the existence of God, I associate that with believe not, and since believe is associated with 2, I would denote that person as holding the number 2 position: B(~G).

The word, "disbelieve" is ambiguous, and I'm not talking about the sense associated with the idea of a wife being in disbelief upon hearing of her husband's death. I am using the term, "disbelieve" to also mean just what "denies" means. Hence, to disbelieve is to hold a belief that something is not true, and if we're talking about God's existence, then we're talking about another case of number 2: B(~G).

However, I am told that "disbelieve" is even more ambiguous that I thought. I am told that not only can it mean believe not, I am also being told that it can mean not believe, and that throws a monkey wrench into things. If it is in fact ambiguous like I'm told, then I cannot determine whether or not such a person that disbelieves in God is a person that has a belief or a person that lacks belief, so I cannot tell if such a person is 2 or 3.

To figure out how I ought to interpret "disbelieve", I'm looking to the word, "or." If it's in fact inclusive, then "disbelieve" ought to be interpreted as believe not, but if it's exclusive, then it ought to be interpreted as not believe.

Since you believe (Kennethamy) that it's inclusive, just as I do, (and if we're correct) then we can deduce that the term, "disbelieve" is not being used as not believe. Unless I'm mistaken, then the definition does not imply that an atheist is one that lacks belief in God but rather a person that believes that a God or gods does not exist.


---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 05:52 PM ----------

fast;108861 wrote:
Oh, I didn't know that. I thought you held it the other way. My mistake. You'd think I'd know your position by now. Oh well. Life goes on.


More broadly, I use the "dis-" prefix to signify a negation to the following sentence part, as in "disthink". To be obscure one could write "I disdeny that [P]" and that would be equivalent to "I believe that [P]". I mentioned something similar here.
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 10:56 am
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;108856 wrote:
Interesting. I would mean ~B(G). I use "disbelief" to mean "refusal or reluctance to believe."

I am aware of this usage. I even gave an example earlier about a wife being in disbelief upon learning of her husbands death. However, it has only just now occured to me that this in fact may be how the word is being used in the definition.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 12:06 PM ----------

Emil;108862 wrote:
Are you sure? Supposing I did, let me try again.

Think of having a belief as having a fifty pound backpack. Ann, Bob, and Charlie are climbing up a hill.

Ann and Bob are having difficulty getting up the hill, for they are both each carrying a heavy fifty pound backpack, but Charlie isn't having any trouble getting up the hill at all, for he has no backpack to carry.

B(G) is heavy, for there is a belief, but B(~G) is heavy too, for there is a belief. ~B(G) isn't heavy at all, for there is no belief.

So, Ann and Bob have something in common. They have a belief. Charlie is different, as he has no belief.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:14 am
@fast,
fast;108864 wrote:
Are you sure? Supposing I did, let me try again.

Think of having a belief as having a fifty pound backpack. Ann, Bob, and Charlie are climbing up a hill.

Ann and Bob are having difficulty getting up the hill, for they are both each carrying a heavy fifty pound backpack, but Charlie isn't having any trouble getting up the hill at all, for he has no backpack to carry.

B(G) is heavy, for there is a belief, but B(~G) is heavy too, for there is a belief. ~B(G) isn't heavy at all, for there is no belief.

So, Ann and Bob have something in common. They have a belief. Charlie is different, as he has no belief.


I understood what you meant but what you wrote was confused. Obviously if you want to see that I'm right just read your own post.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:19 am
@Emil,
Emil;108857 wrote:

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 05:44 PM ----------



The marked text above is inconsistent. I think you meant to say this:[INDENT]Logical inconsistencies are not possible. Of course, that is not to say that belief in them do not occur.[/INDENT]


Yes, you are right. I should have not said that, and said what you said.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:22 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;108870 wrote:
Yes, you are right. I should have not said that, and said what you said.


I find that reading through one's own posts before posting them is a great help.
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:24 am
@Emil,
Emil;108862 wrote:
To be obscure one could write "I disdeny that [P]" and that would be equivalent to "I believe that [P]". I mentioned something similar here.

"Deny" is an interesting word. It's not merely a statement that something isn't the case; instead, it's also a response to an assertion or accusation.

For example, if I walk into the room, and if no one has spoken to me, I can state that I didn't say something, but I can't deny an accusation that I spoke when entering, since there was no accusation.

So, to deny there is a God is not merely to state there is no God; rather, it's to state it in response to something.

(I think)

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 12:30 PM ----------

Emil;108868 wrote:
I understood what you meant but what you wrote was confused. Obviously if you want to see that I'm right just read your own post.
I did read it, and now I've read it again, but I don't see that it's so obvious that you're right. I could have written it better.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:30 am
@fast,
fast;108873 wrote:
"Deny" is an interesting word. It's not merely a statement that something isn't the case; instead, it's also a response to an assertion or accusation.

For example, if I walk into the room, and if no one has spoken to me, I can state that I didn't say something, but I can't deny an accusation that I spoke when entering, since there was no accusation.

So, to deny there is a God is not merely to state there is no God; rather, it's to state it in response to something.

(I think)


I don't use "deny" like that. Maybe it's a native thing.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 06:31 PM ----------

fast;108873 wrote:
I did read it, and now I've read it again, but I don't see that it's so obvious that you're right. I could have written it better.


You do not see that you mention Bob twice in your comparison but not Ann? Anyway. I don't care enough to discuss this irrelevancy.
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:43 am
@fast,
Are you talking about when I said, "Charlie, unlike Bob, does not believe that God does not exist[.]?" Remember, Bob believes that God does not exist, but Charlie has no such belief, so it is not the case that Charlie holds the belief that God does not exist, so Charlie, unlike Bob, does not believe that God does not exist. That doesn't imply that he believes (like Ann) that God exists.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 12:46 PM ----------

Emil;108879 wrote:
Anyway. I don't care enough to discuss this irrelevancy.
Me either, but I already posted before I read this part of your post, which I assume was edited in.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:53 am
@fast,
fast wrote:

So, to deny there is a God is not merely to state there is no God; rather, it's to state it in response to something.


I can say I deny there is a God right now, merely stating there is no God, and not be responding to anything. Here:

I deny there is a God.

Are you sure that whenever we use "deny", it is in response to something? It can be, but it need not be. One can use deny much like they use disbelief: As a way to express they refuse to believe something. Or, do you think that affirming or denying a belief in any manner is a sort of response to something?
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:54 am
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;108887 wrote:
I can say I deny there is a God right now, merely stating there is no God, and not be responding to anything. Here:

I deny there is a God.

Are you sure that whenever we use "deny", it is in response to something? It can be, but it need not be. One can use deny much like they use disbelief: As a way to express they refuse to believe something. Or, do you think that affirming or denying a belief in any manner is a sort of response to something?


I'm also unfamiliar with this responsive use of "deny".
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 11:59 am
@Emil,
Emil;108888 wrote:
I'm also unfamiliar with this responsive use of "deny".


No you're not, and neither am I (I never said I'm unfamiliar with this use of "deny". What I did say is that I don't think this use of "deny" is the only use of deny).

If Tim said, "I deny your claim", to Jim, this would be a responsive use of "deny", if Tim was responding to an assertion Jim made. Wouldn't it? At least that's what I think fast was referring to.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 12:27 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;108891 wrote:
No you're not, and neither am I (I never said I'm unfamiliar with this use of "deny". What I did say is that I don't think this use of "deny" is the only use of deny).

If Tim said, "I deny your claim", to Jim, this would be a responsive use of "deny", if Tim was responding to an assertion Jim made. Wouldn't it? At least that's what I think fast was referring to.


I meant: I am unfamiliar with "deny" being used only responsively.
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 12:50 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;108887 wrote:
I can say I deny there is a God right now, merely stating there is no God, and not be responding to anything. Here:

I deny there is a God.
Well, I didn't say you couldn't say it. I'm saying you can't do it.

Others have stated that God exists, so you can deny that the statement is true, but had such a statement never been made, although you can state that there is no God, you could not (at that time) deny that there is no God since to deny is to respond in the negative.

(I think)
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 12:55 pm
@fast,
fast;108902 wrote:
Well, I didn't say you couldn't say it. I'm saying you can't do it.

Others have stated that God exists, so you can deny that the statement is true, but had such a statement never been made, although you can state that there is no God, you could not (at that time) deny that there is no God since to deny is to respond in the negative.

(I think)


If someone thinks of something, denies it, and no one else has any thought at all on the matter, is said person responding to themselves? Or, is said person denying something without responding?

Do you doubt that I can outwardly (through text) deny without responding to an assertion previously made?

I deny that pumpkin-headed geese with large testicles wielding baseball bats exist in my basement. If you think someone has already made such a claim, I'll try again for you.
 
 

 
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