What is Truth made of?

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Fido
 
Reply Sat 12 Dec, 2009 07:53 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;110645 wrote:
These aliens I play poker with keep laughing at me when I say the world is spherical. They mock us humans for seeing space as 3-dimensional. For them, the shape of the world is "Hf76skkd00fll5." They wrote this down for me as the best approximation possible of their spoken language, which the human ear cannot hear all of. Lucky me, they have a translator that speaks English. He said he learned it thoroughly in an Earth-day, while his ship, invisible to our best technology, orbited to do a little study, and prepare for a visit. Apparently the they have their sort of Darwin on board, studying the varieties of sentient beings and also their perceptions of "reality." They pat me on the head sometimes, pitying me for not seeing 4 of the seven dimensions. But the translator joked that perhaps they too were limited, that there might be 20 dimensions. Not everyone laughed.

Playing poker??? Who's ahead, and who's behind???
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sat 12 Dec, 2009 08:33 pm
@Reconstructo,
Well, I lost every game. Because they could see in 7-dimensions. They could see my hand from several "angles" that I was not aware of.

Anyone ever read Flatland? It's a geometrical fantasy-religion novel. This two dimension polygon is visited by a 3 dimensional sphere. Man, it's brilliant.
 
Fido
 
Reply Sat 12 Dec, 2009 09:58 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;110738 wrote:
Well, I lost every game. Because they could see in 7-dimensions. They could see my hand from several "angles" that I was not aware of.

Anyone ever read Flatland? It's a geometrical fantasy-religion novel. This two dimension polygon is visited by a 3 dimensional sphere. Man, it's brilliant.

And I thought I read too much...
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sat 12 Dec, 2009 10:04 pm
@Fido,
Fido;110778 wrote:
And I thought I read too much...



Well, Fido, my first serious girlfriend is freakishly still the girl I'm with. 13 years of monogamy and never much money, never much property but books. Part time job after part time job. I've definitely violated Schopenhauer's advice: life before text, text before criticism. But then again my life has not been ordinary...
 
Fido
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 12:22 am
@Reconstructo,
The path ordinary does not find philosophy... Philosophers are freaks..No offense intended
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 12:23 am
@Reconstructo,
None taken. None at all. You have seen my wig? I mean, I only wear it for special occasions.....
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 01:49 am
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;110645 wrote:
These aliens I play poker with keep laughing at me when I say the world is spherical. They mock us humans for seeing space as 3-dimensional. For them, the shape of the world is "Hf76skkd00fll5." .


But, what is your point? Is it that we might be mistaken about the shape of the Earth? Of course we might. It is a contingent proposition that the shape is spherical. So what? Have you any reason to think we are mistaken?
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 02:36 am
@Reconstructo,
I don't expect us to stop revising our conceptions of reality. This is why the correspondence theory of truth does not completely satisfy me, however useful. Also, human beings live by metaphorical/mythological paradigms that are as important as their concepts of the physical world. The correspondence theory of truth fails to address this. The coherence theory of truth is closer to the way humans live as human beings with a need for purpose. The deflationary theory of truth addresses the redundancy in the correspondence theory of truth.

We need a theory of truth that addresses purpose and value. Ironism is better suited for the person who wants to understand as many people as possible. What Keats loved about Shakespeare was just this negative capability.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 03:13 am
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;110838 wrote:
I don't expect us to stop revising our conceptions of reality. This is why the correspondence theory of truth does not completely satisfy me, .


Why would that be any reason? That it rained today, but did not rain yesterday, does not mean it is not true that it rained yesterday. Or that we thought it rained yesterday, but that it did not, does not mean that it was not false that it rained yesterday. That we change our conceptions of reality (or in English, that what we think is true, we discover later is not true) has nothing to do with reality. You keep confusing our beliefs with what is believed. Just as you keep confusing our experiences, with what is experienced. That is why you are an Idealist. Those are the central Idealist confusions.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 03:21 am
@Reconstructo,
Allow me to disagree. I would enjoy it if you would discuss your views of the various theories of truth I offered. I know quite well what idealism is and quite well that I do not ascribe to it. I'm in love with my wife. She's not just a dream of mine. I have no doubt that there is a world outside my skull. The question is the relationship between consciousness and that which we describe as the objective world. I say we divide our consciousness (which transcends subject and object) into "subjective" and "objective". Something like James' radical empiricism. Holderlin was Hegel's roomate in college and told him the same thing. Hegel addressed the dialectic between the subective and objective. He was a realist, actually, despite his associations with idealism. Of course I disagree with Hegel on some major points, but his phenomenology is brilliant. And I'm still exploring his difficult ideas. At the root level of perception is pure experience. But this is just one more description.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 03:36 am
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;110854 wrote:
Allow me to disagree. I would enjoy it if you would discuss your views of the various theories of truth I offered. I know quite well what idealism is and quite well that I do not ascribe to it. I'm in love with my wife. She's not just a dream of mine. I have no doubt that there is a world outside my skull. The question is the relationship between consciousness and that which we describe as the objective world. I say we divide our consciousness (which transcends subject and object) into "subjective" and "objective". Something like James' radical empiricism. Holderlin was Hegel's roomate in college and told him the same thing. Hegel addressed the dialectic between the subective and objective. He was a realist, actually, despite his associations with idealism. Of course I disagree with Hegel on some major points, but his phenomenology is brilliant. And I'm still exploring his difficult ideas. At the root level of perception is pure experience. But this is just one more description.



You can believe you are not an Idealist, and if you subscribe to central Idealist views, you are still an Idealist. The view that we do not experience reality is a central Idealist notion (transcendental Idealism of the Kantian variety, when you tip your hat to reality, is still Idealism). Not distinguishing between our beliefs, and what we believe, is another.

I don't want to discuss theories of truth. The coherence theory of truth is still another central tenet of Idealism. The Pragmatic theory is not one. Discussing theories of truth would be diversionary, and tedious. And it is not necessary.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 03:42 am
@Reconstructo,
Do you really want to pin this boogey-man word "idealism" on me? And yet somehow I have managed to survive in this merciless world, lollygagging around in my little dream. I even got a pretty girl to marry and friends to get my back in dangerous situations. Lucky for them they didn't know they were just my 'magination.

What I'm not is a naive realist. But I have the same contempt for naive idealism. The truth is a dialectic of the two. To deny the factor of consciousness is masochistic to the extreme. To deny the objective world is childish.

Kant is great. But we've come a long way. I'm fond of Freud, Jung, Maslow, Fromm, and even had a phase with B.F. Skinner. As a child, science was my favorite subject. I passed the Nuke test (as they call it) when I joined the Navy at seventeen. I've pulled a gun on burglars. I assure you: it was real. But I was conscious of it, or I wouldn't remember it to tell you about it. And I'm conscious of the memories, or I couldn't have written them down. So I'm not inclined to describe my experience as mind-independent. So put the idealism holy water away. Smile
 
ACB
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 12:33 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;110864 wrote:
What I'm not is a naive realist. But I have the same contempt for naive idealism. The truth is a dialectic of the two. To deny the factor of consciousness is masochistic to the extreme. To deny the objective world is childish.


But even a naive realist must believe that we experience everything through consciousness. And that experience can be deceptive (e.g. a straight stick partly immersed in water looks bent). So can you say precisely what a naive realist believes but you do not?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 12:47 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;110864 wrote:
Do you really want to pin this boogey-man word "idealism" on me? And yet somehow I have managed to survive in this merciless world, lollygagging around in my little dream. I even got a pretty girl to marry and friends to get my back in dangerous situations. Lucky for them they didn't know they were just my 'magination.

What I'm not is a naive realist. But I have the same contempt for naive idealism. The truth is a dialectic of the two. To deny the factor of consciousness is masochistic to the extreme. To deny the objective world is childish.

Smile



George Berkeley, he whom Johnson kicked the stone to refute, was an Idealist, but he did not "deny the objective world" either. He believed that there were shoes, and ships, and sealing wax, and cabbages, and kings. And he did not believe that pigs had wings. He did not believe any of those things (except the pigs with wings) were imaginary either. How do you differ from him? He wasn't a "naive Idealist", but an Idealist he certainly was.
 
Fido
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 01:16 pm
@Reconstructo,
If an idealist is one who understands that we perceive with our minds and know through ideas we form about the reality we perceive, then most of us are idealists...
The only kind of idealist I can't stomach are those who think they can remake our forms based upon an ideal conception of man and mankind... People can make their own forms, and based upon natural forms, like the family, and the nation, which are the best...Our forms of economy and government are recent...They have existed for a fraction of our time as humans, and are all on the point of failure... What has been universally successful has been nearly totally discarded...It was not because of some mythical noble savage that their societies survived, but because their forms of relationship had to function, and to function, called forth the best efforts and thoughts of every member...Having no technology we would consider modern, primitives had to channel their abilities to creating effective social forms...Our technology creating mountains of wealth does not require a great deal of social organization in the form of government... As long as enough people have enough no change will be made...History shows that until societies are over run they never realize how weak they have made themselves through injustice... They cannot consider a change of forms based upon ideal forms, or a change of any sort...People simply cannot objectively consider their forms which they have grown up with...There are no ideal forms, so idealism is pointless... There are only forms which work, and those which do not..
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 01:19 pm
@Fido,
Fido;110968 wrote:
If an idealist is one who understands that we perceive with our minds and know through ideas we form about the reality we perceive, then most of us are idealists...
.

Well, you needn't have gone on, since that is not what an Idealist is.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 02:38 pm
@Reconstructo,
I'm more in sympathy with indirect realism.

"The debate over the nature of conscious experience is confounded by the deeper epistemological question of whether the world we see around us is the real world itself, or merely an internal perceptual copy of that world generated by neural processes in our brainrepresentationalism."[4]

Naïve realism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

---------- Post added 12-13-2009 at 03:42 PM ----------

ACB;110956 wrote:
But even a naive realist must believe that we experience everything through consciousness. And that experience can be deceptive (e.g. a straight stick partly immersed in water looks bent). So can you say precisely what a naive realist believes but you do not?



I think our experience of reality is mediated by the brain and our personal culture. We see the same girl from different angles and have very different thoughts and feelings about her. She's one person's wife and another's mother, and yet another's daughter. The more human we make our examples, the more apparent it becomes that reality-in-itself is processed as we experience it.
 
Fido
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 03:45 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;110969 wrote:
Well, you needn't have gone on, since that is not what an Idealist is.

How do you define idealist, because this is a paraphrase as I understand him of at least one idealist...

Define your terms, as I tried to do...
 
prothero
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 03:56 pm
@Reconstructo,
I thought the classical definition of idealism in epistomology was the idea that reality has no existence independent of our mental perception of it. No one in this discussion seems to hold that view.

Berkeley interestingly thought objects did exist independently of human sense perception because they were continously being perceived by god. Reality was a construct of the divine mind or perception.

Correct me if I am wrong. I am just an arm chair philosopher. No formal training in this area.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 13 Dec, 2009 04:00 pm
@Reconstructo,
Use it however you like. It's Wiki. Epistemological idealism seems quite close to indirect realism. Is there a substantial difference?


Idealism
is the philosophical theory that maintains that the ultimate nature of reality is based on mind or ideas. It holds that the so-called external or "real world" is inseparable from mind, consciousness, or perception. In the philosophy of perception, idealism is contrasted with realism in which the external world is said to have a so-called absolute existence prior to, and independent of, knowledge and consciousness. Epistemological idealists (such as Kant), it is claimed, might insist that the only things which can be directly known for certain are just ideas (abstraction).

Radical empiricism is a pragmatist doctrine put forth by William James. It asserts that experience includes both particulars and relations between those particulars, and that therefore both deserve a place in our explanations. In concrete terms: any philosophical worldview is flawed if it stops at the physical level and fails to explain how meaning, values and intentionality can arise from that.[1]
 
 

 
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