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Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Faith, Round II

Awhile back I made a post about faith, where I equated regular faith with blind faith, showed that evidence destroys faith, and generally criticized the whole faith concept in general. Well some Christians didn’t like me doing that, and they accused me of misrepresentation and bad form because I used the dictionary for a definition of faith rather than the Bible.

I don't accept the Bible as any authority, so why should I be forced to use the Bible's definition of faith? The Bible is not the definitive source for the English language, and when I debate and write, I do so in the tongue of "English," not "Biblish". I think the Van Til quote about faith that I copied and pasted is also in "English" and not "Biblish". When Christian apologists deride me for using the dictionary definition of faith rather than the Biblical definition, they imply that the Biblical definition is something quite different than the dictionary definition. Let's take a look at what the Bible defines faith as, and compare it to what the dictionary defines it as, just so that we can settle this confusion.

Hebrews 11:1 Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

I had this verse waiting in my notes. I deliberately did not use it at first, to see if any Christians would volunteer the verse. Nobody did. I even went so far as to deny that the Bible even defined faith, as bait to get someone to offer up the verse. Finally, here it is. Hebrews 11:1 in all its glory.

So let's compare the Hebrews verse to the dictionary definition. From dictionary.com:

Belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence.

Hmmmm, they look kind of similar, don’t they? Substance of things hoped for vs. belief that does not rest on logical proof. Evidence of things not seen vs. belief that does not rest on... material evidence. But what is evidence of things not seen? I think that is just another way of saying "...does not rest on... material evidence".

Honestly, these two sources have remarkably similar definitions of faith. So similar, that I believe these two definitions both essentially say "belief in things unevidenced". So what is with all these "bad form" claims from Christians? And what is with the "blind faith" distinction that Van Til makes, especially considering that Hebrews 11:1 says "things not seen"? Surely Van Til was aware of this "unseen" word in Hebrews 11:1 when he said "...but surely it must not be taken on blind faith"?

Actually, no. I don’t think Van Til was aware of this when he wrote his defense of faith. I don’t think Van Til had clear definitions for "faith" and "blind faith". I think Van Til just assumed his readers would know the difference. What that difference is, I am not clear, nor have any Christians that I've encountered even attempted to explain the difference. I think Van Til had some kind of notion in his head that normal "faith" was somehow slightly evidenced, but "blind faith" was completely unevidenced. Well, the dictionary and Hebrews 11:1 both just corrected Van Til's sloppy definitions of "faith" for us, didn’t they?

It looks like we haven’t settled the whole matter. We started out with the dictionary's definition of faith. To some readers of this blog, that wasn't good enough. So now I offer up the Biblical definition of faith. Somehow, I get the feeling that this still will not be good enough for all our readers. Now I ask, does anyone have a Van Til definition of faith? I imagine that he was most likely using the same definition for faith that we find in the dictionary and Bible, which is a good thing, for it is likely the definition that all good Christians should use.

Here is a slightly revised points list:

1. All faith is blind; there is no difference between blind faith and regular faith.
2. Faith is belief without evidence or reason.
3. Faith is required for salvation (Hebrews 11:6).
4. To have reason and evidence for Christianity is to not have faith.
5. Without blind faith in Christianity, you are damned.

Post a Comment


153 Comments:

At 6/07/2005 2:00 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

The Biblical definition is very good : faith is belief in things that you don't see/perceive. To have faith is to willfully ignore reality. There is no simpler way of expressing it.

 
At 6/07/2005 2:27 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

And to think that I was accused of using bad form for using the dictionary. I exposed the false implication that the Bible has a different definition. They are, for all functional purposes, saying the exact same thing!

 
At 6/07/2005 2:42 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

Mark Twain offered this definition:

"Faith is believing what you know ain't so."

 
At 6/07/2005 5:10 PM, Blogger Josh declaimed...

I doubt many (if any) Reformed Christians (i.e., presuppositionalists) would claim that their belief is based on evidence. At the same time, that does not mean that there does not exist evidence; it simply means that the evidence is not the basis for belief.

 
At 6/07/2005 5:36 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Van Til seemed to claim that it was based on evidence as shown in his quote where he said that Christianity should be capable of rational defense.

Presups seem to be confused over the faith thing. For if faith is belief without evidence as the Bible states, then to provide evidence for Christianity is to destroy faith.

Faith and evidence are mutually exclusive, something that Van Til seems to not understand (and neither do presups).

 
At 6/07/2005 6:24 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

"I doubt many (if any) Reformed Christians (i.e., resuppositionalists) would claim that their belief is based on evidence."

Then they have conceded victory.

 
At 6/07/2005 6:39 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Presuppositionalism insists that there is supporting evidence, but the problem is that they have to accept Christianity FIRST and on the basis of assuming the truth of Christianity, they can then "interpret" anything and everything as evidence. Of course, one could take the same tack with any arbitrary belief.

 
At 6/07/2005 10:41 PM, Blogger Josh declaimed...

Christianity may indeed be rationally defensible; however, that rational defense is still not the foundation for belief.

You made a little slip earlier when you said that, "faith is belief without evidence." In your article, though, you say that faith is belief not based on evidence. While similar, those are not the same.

Showing evidence does not destroy the faith base of Christianity, because the Bible states that no one will (truly) believe because of evidence. Enter the concept of the fallenness of man, with which I am sure you are familiar.

 
At 6/07/2005 10:59 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

"Enter the concept of the fallenness of man, with which I am sure you are familiar."

Which pretty much destroys any hope of the believer understanding what the hell he's believing in.

 
At 6/07/2005 11:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

This is pathetic aaron. There is so much wrong with this article it isn't even funny. (as a side note, ever heard of fideism?)


I'm not going to go into your article in detail but want to comment on a hidden premise of yours - namely that religious belief (christian faith) is not rational (warranted) since there is not any 'material' evidence for said belief.

Now the question that comes to mind is - do you have any 'material' evidence to support your belief per above (that rational beliefs be supported by 'material' evidence)? If you don't, then remember is it irrational. And don't forget now we are looking for 'material' evidence.

Just to mention a handful of problems with your 'article' - why did you leave off the 'logical proof' part of the definition and want to solely use 'material' evidence instead? Also, in your first article, why did you quote two definitions of faith but in this one assume only the first definition?

 
At 6/07/2005 11:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

in sum aaron, you did not touch christianity...

 
At 6/08/2005 12:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

more problems aaron,

you said, "For if faith is belief without evidence as the Bible states, then to provide evidence for Christianity is to destroy faith.

Faith and evidence are mutually exclusive, something that Van Til seems to not understand (and neither do presups)."

Step inside Christianity for a bit and examine the apostle's. Did they have evidence and faith??? Remember we are talking about what the 'bible states'?

 
At 6/08/2005 12:35 AM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

From the mouth of the mighty anonymous:

"(as a side note, ever heard of fideism?)"

Indeed. Its what is required for Christians to *believe* in their manmade definition of God.

more from the fingertips of anonymous:

"I'm not going to go into your article in detail but want to comment on a hidden premise of yours - namely that religious belief (christian faith) is not rational (warranted) since there is not any 'material' evidence for said belief."

In my opinion, there isn't any material evidence that makes Christianity any more plausible than Mormonism (even more material evidence!) Paganism, or Jedi-ism. The Christian faith is built on a book. Period. Lots of books out there to support other religions too.

more from Paul, I mean anonymous:

"why did you leave off the 'logical proof' part of the definition and want to solely use 'material' evidence instead?"

Material evidence is what is used to confirm just about everything we KNOW about the world around us. Logical proofs can be applied to ANY god-concept, and the only way Christians can try to make their flavor of God the 'right one' is through appealing to material evidence. Logical proofs are fun to chat about, but can be applied to anything. Maybe I'm wrong. Show me the logical proof for the Christian God that doesn't appeal to material evidence.

Finally, anonymous finishes with a flourish!

"in sum aaron, you did not touch christianity..."

Nothing to touch. Its not *real.* God concept, savior concepts, all taken from other religions and from a book, written by men. whoop dee do.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

not reformed says, "Material evidence is what is used to confirm just about everything we KNOW about the world around us. Logical proofs can be applied to ANY god-concept, and the only way Christians can try to make their flavor of God the 'right one' is through appealing to material evidence. Logical proofs are fun to chat about, but can be applied to anything. Maybe I'm wrong. Show me the logical proof for the Christian God that doesn't appeal to material evidence."

Wrong and you miss the argument and the point and you are wrong that this is paul.

I think it only fair that aaron provide 'material' evidence for his belief that religious belief is irrational/unwarranted since it has to have material evidence - to support his assertion with the type of evidence he requires of the religious. This creates an infinite regress as now all beliefs have to supported with 'material' evidence. no person can possess an infinite number of beliefs; therefore, it would follow that no belief is rational or warranted with his view.

You say that 'material' evidence is used to support everything we know? Now did you examine or have 'material' evidence or did you read about it in a book?

 
At 6/08/2005 12:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

"Material evidence is what is used to confirm just about everything we KNOW about the world around us."

And do you have 'material' evidence that 'material' evidence is what is used to confirm just about everything we KNOW about the world or did you read that in book?

 
At 6/08/2005 1:12 AM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

Anonymous asked:

"And do you have 'material' evidence that 'material' evidence is what is used to confirm just about everything we KNOW about the world or did you read that in book?"

So, do I have material evidence to back up my claim, or did I read it in a book?

Are books not material evidence?

Not sure I get your stellar point, although I'm sure you can help me out.

Do you want to show me your logical proof for the Christian God that doesn't point to material evidence? How about the logical proof that doesn't require faith?

Thanks!

 
At 6/08/2005 8:40 AM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

I'm reminded of the Babel Fish Argument for the Nonexistence of God.

Anonymous said:
Step inside Christianity for a bit and examine the apostle's. Did they have evidence and faith??? Remember we are talking about what the 'bible states'?

I don't think the apostles did have faith. The motivation for all the apostles was, according to the Bible, some kind of material evidence (especially Thomas). Even Paul saw and heard Jesus on the road.

 
At 6/08/2005 9:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

NR said, "Are books not material evidence?"

That's exactly what I wanted you to say! I read things in a 'book' also. :)



"Not sure I get your stellar point, although I'm sure you can help me out."

My point is to find out if he has 'material' evidence for his claim. And since he wants to posit as rational those beliefs that have material evidence, we will keep going further and further back to get all his 'material' evidence, which is why it will end in an infinite regress. You see he wants to subject Christianity to certain standards and I want to see if his other standards meet that same obligation (which they don't).



NR says, "Do you want to show me your logical proof for the Christian God that doesn't point to material evidence? How about the logical proof that doesn't require faith?"


Well this is where your first statement comes in handy. I'll quote you, ""Are books not material evidence?"

 
At 6/08/2005 9:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

Zachary says, "I don't think the apostles did have faith. The motivation for all the apostles was, according to the Bible, some kind of material evidence (especially Thomas). Even Paul saw and heard Jesus on the road."


Well that goods you don't think they did but i asked you to step inside Christianity (for an internal critique) and Christ said they did and they would not have been saved if not.

 
At 6/08/2005 9:21 AM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

anonymous said:

"Well that goods you don't think they did but i asked you to step inside Christianity (for an internal critique) and Christ said they did and they would not have been saved if not."

You may not be Paul, but you both share the same lack of English communication skills.

anonymous:

"That's exactly what I wanted you to say! I read things in a 'book' also. :)"

I have no problems with accepting we need material evidences, such as books. It looks like we're in agreement. However, your 'book' has many flaws, which one would expect from a humanly inspired document, rather than a diveinly inspired one. I've still read no reasons why I should believe your 'book' over any other religious book.

A Christian can combine their 'evidence' from their flawed book with flawed logical proofs and magical Holy Inspired insights...but it still doesn't *prove* anything. My belief in a non-personal 'god/force' is just as rational (or irrational) as your belief in a angry/jealous tribal Jehovah god.

Anonymous...do you reject the Mormon concept of God? If so, why?

 
At 6/08/2005 9:37 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul wrote: "i asked you to step inside Christianity (for an internal critique) and Christ said they did and they would not have been saved if not."

This statement serves as an eloquent example of what I was pointing out when I gave the following comment above:

Presuppositionalism insists that there is supporting evidence, but the problem is that they have to accept Christianity FIRST and on the basis of assuming the truth of Christianity, they can then "interpret" anything and everything as evidence. Of course, one could take the same tack with any arbitrary belief.

By "step inside Christianity" Paul essentially means "take everything Christianity says [and everything Paul says about Christianity] as unquestionably true, even though there's absolutely no good reason to do so." After you do this, then you'll magically see how everything serves as "evidence" of the Christian god.

I've already pointed out the fallacies of taking "the Bible" as one's starting point on my blog. I've also exposed the fallacies committed when one claims that things that are natural, material, finite and corruptible somehow constitute evidence of something that is allegedly "supernatural," immaterial, infinite and incorruptible. A thing does not serve as evidence of the existence of something that contradicts it.

So far, I've not seen any Christians even try to rebut my points (though they have gained the attention of a certain fellow who goes by the name "Pathetic"). I suppose they cannot answer me.

 
At 6/08/2005 9:40 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

NR: "You may not be Paul, but you both share the same lack of English communication skills."

Well, until he identifies himself otherwise, he does nothing to undo our very strong suspicion that he is in fact lovable little Paul. After all, if that's not Paul, where is he? I don't see any entries in these comments headed by "Paul Manata said..."

 
At 6/08/2005 9:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

NR said, "I have no problems with accepting we need material evidences, such as books. It looks like we're in agreement."

No we are not. Like Van Til, I accept every fact as evidence for the existence of God. I don't necessarily hold to 'we need *material* evidences' for our beliefs in the evidentialist sense as you. You still never answered where your material evidence was for your belief that we need material evidence.


NR said, "However, your 'book' has many flaws, which one would expect from a humanly inspired document, rather than a diveinly inspired one."


Are you making the claim that your books are divinely inspired?


NR said, "I've still read no reasons why I should believe your 'book' over any other religious book."


I've still seen no material evidence that one has to have material evidence in order to believe things.


NR said, "A Christian can combine their 'evidence' from their flawed book with flawed logical proofs and magical Holy Inspired insights...but it still doesn't *prove* anything."


Tu quoque.



NR said, "My belief in a non-personal 'god/force' is just as rational (or irrational) as your belief in a angry/jealous tribal Jehovah god."


Do you have 'material' evidence for the belief that "My belief in a non-personal 'god/force' is just as rational (or irrational) as your belief in a angry/jealous tribal Jehovah god."?


NR said, "Anonymous...do you reject the Mormon concept of God? If so, why?"

Yes, b/c the Mormon concept of God does not provide the preconditions for intelligibility. NOW tell me what this has to do with the topic (study bahnsen or any number of other works for the explanation as this is not under discussion)?

 
At 6/08/2005 9:52 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "I accept every fact as evidence for the existence of God."

I accept every fact as evidence that there are no gods, since facts are objective (i.e., A is A independent of anyone's wanting, wishing and imagination) while god-belief reduces to the view that A is whatever some supernatural consciousness wants it to be.

 
At 6/08/2005 9:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

dawson,

dawson said, 'By "step inside Christianity" Paul essentially means "take everything Christianity says [and everything Paul says about Christianity] as unquestionably true, even though there's absolutely no good reason to do so." After you do this, then you'll magically see how everything serves as "evidence" of the Christian god."


No I am wanting you to perform an internal critique (hypothetically true).


dawson said, "I've already pointed out the fallacies of taking "the Bible" as one's starting point on my blog. I've also exposed the fallacies committed when one claims that things that are natural, material, finite and corruptible somehow constitute evidence of something that is allegedly "supernatural," immaterial, infinite and incorruptible. A thing does not serve as evidence of the existence of something that contradicts it."

So far, I've not seen any Christians even try to rebut my points (though they have gained the attention of a certain fellow who goes by the name "Pathetic"). I suppose they cannot answer me."


hmmm this has nothing to do with anything here so oh well....

 
At 6/08/2005 10:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

dawson said, "Well, until he identifies himself otherwise, he does nothing to undo our very strong suspicion that he is in fact lovable little Paul. After all, if that's not Paul, where is he? I don't see any entries in these comments headed by "Paul Manata said...""


I identified myself on a certain blog yesterday and you still said I was paul, so this point is mute.

 
At 6/08/2005 10:17 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "I identified myself on a certain blog yesterday"

Oh, is that you, Mr. Pathetic? Why aren't you posting under GroundFigher76?

Paul: "and you still said I was paul,"

I said that because I think you are Paul.

Paul: "so this point is mute."

Do you mean "moot"?

Yep, it's Paul alright.

 
At 6/08/2005 10:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

"Oh, is that you, Mr. Pathetic? Why aren't you posting under GroundFigher76?"

b/c i didn't want to when I posted? Problem?



"Paul: "and you still said I was paul,"

I said that because I think you are Paul."

Well all I can say is you are still thinking wrong.


"Paul: "so this point is mute."

Do you mean "moot"?"

Ooopss you got me... My mistake...

 
At 6/08/2005 10:23 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "Well all I can say is you are still thinking wrong."

Why not post right now as groundfighter76?

 
At 6/08/2005 10:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

dawson said, "Why not post right now as groundfighter76?"


Why is this bothering you so bad? You said a day or two ago that you didn't care what I did.

 
At 6/08/2005 10:29 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "Why is this bothering you so bad? You said a day or two ago that you didn't care what I did."

I see, you won't take the challenge. And it's true, I don't care what you do. I was just offering you a chance to prove yourself is all. But I see you've reneged on this. Tsk tsk.

 
At 6/08/2005 10:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

dawson said, "I see, you won't take the challenge. And it's true, I don't care what you do. I was just offering you a chance to prove yourself is all. But I see you've reneged on this. Tsk tsk."


dude what in the world are you talking about? What challenge? to put gf76 and post as that? Does it matter as you now know? That's retarded dawson.

 
At 6/08/2005 10:44 AM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

Anonymous/groundfighter said:

"Are you making the claim that your books are divinely inspired?"

Yes! I do have divinely inspired books.

They are called "the messages of phil."

These divine works do not have any *original* copies, per se, but I can verify they are divinely inspired, because if they weren't, you couldn't KNOW anything!

Do you dare question "the messages of phil?" If so, why?

I said:

"Anonymous...do you reject the Mormon concept of God? If so, why?"

anonymous said:

"Yes, b/c the Mormon concept of God does not provide the preconditions for intelligibility. NOW tell me what this has to do with the topic (study bahnsen or any number of other works for the explanation as this is not under discussion)?"

What sources did you use to establish that the Mormon 'concept' of God does not provide what you require VS the reformed concept of God?

I ask, because ultimately, I assert you are choosing to 'believe' based on 'faith' alone, which was the original topic of this post/blog.

 
At 6/08/2005 10:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

NR said, "Yes! I do have divinely inspired books.

They are called "the messages of phil."

These divine works do not have any *original* copies, per se, but I can verify they are divinely inspired, because if they weren't, you couldn't KNOW anything!

Do you dare question "the messages of phil?" If so, why?"


Yes I question it based on your own premise (remember it's not mine) - that rational beliefs must have material evidence. So where is the material evidence and a book doesn't suffice because earlier you said that logical proofs are not sufficient and you would have to infer a logical proof from a book.



NR said, "What sources did you use to establish that the Mormon 'concept' of God does not provide what you require VS the reformed concept of God?"

You were pointed elsewhere for this information as this is not the topic. (see below before you respond).


NR said, "I ask, because ultimately, I assert you are choosing to 'believe' based on 'faith' alone, which was the original topic of this post/blog."

This does not relate to the other post and is a strawman attack. Faith alone means without consideration to works and has nothing to do with having reasons for that faith.

 
At 6/08/2005 11:07 AM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

Anonymous said:

"Yes I question it based on your own premise (remember it's not mine) - that rational beliefs must have material evidence."

Where did I say this?

And since it isn't your premise, why don't you accept the "messages of Phil" as divine?

 
At 6/08/2005 11:07 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "So where is the material evidence and a book doesn't suffice because earlier you said that logical proofs are not sufficient and you would have to infer a logical proof from a book."

It could be that Phil is material. If so, Phil would be fitting evidence. The reason why you don't "see" Phil is because Phil is of a kind of material that pathetic people like you cannot perceive.

NR said, "I ask, because ultimately, I assert you are choosing to 'believe' based on 'faith' alone, which was the original topic of this post/blog."

Paul: "This does not relate to the other post"

Which "other post"? The post to which all our comments are being submitted is a post having to do with faith and Christian god-belief. NR's comments are thus relevant.

Paul: "and is a strawman attack."

How so? You do accept Christianity on faith, do you not? Or is it "I accept Christianity on faith, but..."?

Paul: "Faith alone means without consideration to works"

What does that mean?

Paul: "and has nothing to do with having reasons for that faith."

If one has reason, he has no need to appeal to faith. Since Christianity appeals to faith, it follows that it doesn't have reason.

 
At 6/08/2005 11:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

"Anonymous said:

"Yes I question it based on your own premise (remember it's not mine) - that rational beliefs must have material evidence."

Where did I say this?

And since it isn't your premise, why don't you accept the "messages of Phil" as divine?"


Umm this is what we have been discussing. You agreed with Aaron's article and that was his hidden premise - implied in his article. So are you saying that you disagree with yourself and with aaron in that one does not need 'material' evidence for one's beliefs?


"why don't you accept the "messages of Phil" as divine?"

We could do a transcendental analysis of the 'messages of phil'. But all you have done is make a blanket statement that the messages of phil are divine. Nothing has not been stated or worked out as a worldview.

 
At 6/08/2005 11:35 AM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

anonymous said:

"We could do a transcendental analysis of the 'messages of phil'. But all you have done is make a blanket statement that the messages of phil are divine."

and

"Nothing has not been stated or worked out as a worldview."

Double negative, friend. Nothing has not been stated?

The "messages of Phil" have been communicated to me via Phil's spirit, and my mind has been regenerated to receive and understand these messages. The "messages of Phil" also state that those who have not been picked to be regenerated are operating from a 'fallen man' problem, and can't interpret reality correctly. I fear you may fall into this camp.



Sounds silly, doesn't it? :)

 
At 6/08/2005 11:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

dawson said, "It could be that Phil is material. If so, Phil would be fitting evidence. The reason why you don't "see" Phil is because Phil is of a kind of material that pathetic people like you cannot perceive."

Wrong. This misses the point. I wanted to see the material evidence that only rational beliefs must have material evidence.

nevertheless, phil being material would not provide material evidence that he is divine.



"Which "other post"? The post to which all our comments are being submitted is a post having to do with faith and Christian god-belief. NR's comments are thus relevant."

it was in reference to the mormon god belief. i am not a mormon so no relevance. he asked why i didn't believe it so i told him and will let him check the sources. What these posts have been about is having 'material' evidence in support of beliefs.


"How so? You do accept Christianity on faith, do you not? Or is it "I accept Christianity on faith, but..."?"

Maybe you should have kept reading before you said this. Faith does not necessarily entail not having reasons.


gf76 said, "Faith alone means without consideration to works"

What does that mean?"


The doctrine of sola fide.



dawson said, "If one has reason, he has no need to appeal to faith. Since Christianity appeals to faith, it follows that it doesn't have reason."

And here's where you confuse fideism with faith.

 
At 6/08/2005 11:41 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "We could do a transcendental analysis of the 'messages of phil'."

It's "presupposed" that the "transcendental analysis of the 'messages of phil'" will show that they indeed "provide" the "necessary preconditions for knowledge."

Paul: "But all you have done is make a blanket statement that the messages of phil are divine."

Actually, Phil says that he is divine, and Phil cannot lie.

Paul: "Nothing has not been stated or worked out as a worldview."

How do you know this?

 
At 6/08/2005 11:46 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "Wrong. This misses the point."

It answered your question "where is the material evidence."

Paul: "I wanted to see the material evidence that only rational beliefs must have material evidence."

Phil is the material evidence for this. But as I said, those who are pathetic cannot "see" Phil due to their pathetic nature.

Paul: "nevertheless, phil being material would not provide material evidence that he is divine."

You beg the question against Phil by assuming non-Phillian standards to critique Phil.

Me: "If one has reason, he has no need to appeal to faith. Since Christianity appeals to faith, it follows that it doesn't have reason."

Paul: "And here's where you confuse fideism with faith."

The confusion is not mine, but Christianity's. Reason is the mental faculty which identifies and integrates what we perceive with our senses. It requires no appeal to faith. Christianity thinks faith and reason get along essentially because they have no idea what reason is.

 
At 6/08/2005 11:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

dawson said, "Paul: "We could do a transcendental analysis of the 'messages of phil'."

It's "presupposed" that the "transcendental analysis of the 'messages of phil'" will show that they indeed "provide" the "necessary preconditions for knowledge."

Paul: "But all you have done is make a blanket statement that the messages of phil are divine."

Actually, Phil says that he is divine, and Phil cannot lie.

Paul: "Nothing has not been stated or worked out as a worldview."

How do you know this?"


Umm how do i know this? I wanted the specifics of the worldview which he had not told me (kinda like a bible or something you know....)

 
At 6/08/2005 11:56 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "Umm how do i know this? I wanted the specifics of the worldview which he had not told me (kinda like a bible or something you know....)"

Only Phil can give you these. If you pray to Phil and ask Him to receive you, He may choose to reveal Himself to you.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:00 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

BB said:

"Only Phil can give you these. If you pray to Phil and ask Him to receive you, He may choose to reveal Himself to you."

I see that you know Phil too. That is wonderful! Our Phil is an Awesome Phil!

I'm also glad that you're pointing out that Phil's message is transmitted via spirit. Phil chooses whom He will. Anonymous wants a 'bible' from Phil, but that is not how Phil reveals himself. Is a book needed to know Phil? Nope.

So anonymous, do you still deny the divinity of Phil? I've explained to you some of Phil's worldview, and BB has also.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

"Paul: "Wrong. This misses the point."

It answered your question "where is the material evidence.""

NO IT DID NOT. My question was for you to provide material evidence for the **belief** that only material evidence is sufficient for rationality.


"Phil is the material evidence for this. But as I said, those who are pathetic cannot "see" Phil due to their pathetic nature."

No the material evidence is that Phil is person. I wanted material evidence that he is divine. .


"You beg the question against Phil by assuming non-Phillian standards to critique Phil."


So there is no material evidence for Phil? Earlier you said there was. Make up your mind.


"The confusion is not mine, but Christianity's. Reason is the mental faculty which identifies and integrates what we perceive with our senses. It requires no appeal to faith. Christianity thinks faith and reason get along essentially because they have no idea what reason is."

Do you 'material' evidence for the belief that 'Reason is the mental faculty which identifies and integrates what we perceive with our senses' and that it requires no appeal to faith? If not it's not rational.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:35 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "NO IT DID NOT."

It did, you just don't see it, and I explained why this is.

Paul: "My question was for you to provide material evidence for the **belief** that only material evidence is sufficient for rationality."

Phil is the material evidence for this, Paul. It's up to Phil whether he "provides" Himself to you by revealing Himself to you.

Me: "Phil is the material evidence for this. But as I said, those who are pathetic cannot "see" Phil due to their pathetic nature."

Paul: "No the material evidence is that Phil is person. I wanted material evidence that he is divine."

Phil is the evidence for His divinity by virtue of being Phil, the divine being.

Me: "You beg the question against Phil by assuming non-Phillian standards to critique Phil."

Paul: "So there is no material evidence for Phil?"

There is. Phil is evidence for Himself.

Paul: "Earlier you said there was."

I did. And still do. See above.

Paul: "Make up your mind.

I think I was clear.

Me: "The confusion is not mine, but Christianity's. Reason is the mental faculty which identifies and integrates what we perceive with our senses. It requires no appeal to faith. Christianity thinks faith and reason get along essentially because they have no idea what reason is."

Paul: "Do you 'material' evidence for the belief that 'Reason is the mental faculty which identifies and integrates what we perceive with our senses' and that it requires no appeal to faith?"

Yes, the evidence for this is man himself. Man has a nature, and so does the means by which he discovers and validates knowledge. Man's material nature is my evidence for this.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

NR said, "So anonymous, do you still deny the divinity of Phil? I've explained to you some of Phil's worldview, and BB has also."


I tell you what not reformed, I'll answer you if you first answer the questions that you were asked prior to this. I want to see some 'material' evidence for you guys contention that unless *beliefs* have 'material' evidence then they are unjustified/irrational/whatever.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:44 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

My article is pathetic, eh? Now that I included the Biblical definition its pathetic? I didnt touch Christianity?

Lets see, the only problems you mentioned specifically are that I didnt include the "logical proof" part, which was a simple omission on my part because there is no equivalent in the Biblical definition itself. If you want, I will edit the post to include "logical proof" and everything I say will still apply.

Then you complain about me not having material evidence for some belief of mine. Here is the quote you typed up:

Now the question that comes to mind is - do you have any 'material' evidence to support your belief per above (that rational beliefs be supported by 'material' evidence)? If you don't, then remember is it irrational. And don't forget now we are looking for 'material' evidence.


Which belief of mine are you referring to? You say per above but I dont know which belief of mine you are talking about. Be more specific and we can see if I got material evidence for it or not. We can look at my own beliefs and see which of them do or do not rest on "logical proof" or "material evidence".

then you said:

Also, in your first article, why did you quote two definitions of faith but in this one assume only the first definition?

Because this second article deals more with the Biblical definition and the dictionary definition, as opposed to the Van Til and docitionary definitions.

I also didnt want to re-quote all the Van Til junk and repeat myself too much, especially when the first faith article is easily found on the blog. Thats why my title says "faith, round ii" because its a second article, not a repeat of the first. sheesh!

Now you mentioned that there are so many things wrong with my article and that its pathetic. But the only thing that seems pathetic is your tiny little quibbles. You are attacking minor details of my article, not the main poitn, not the meat and potatoes.

Do you have a problem with the way I interpreted the Biblical definition of faith? Do you have a problem with the way I show that Van Til, the dictionary, and the Bible all say the SAME EXACT THING about what faith is? Do you have anything to say about the real point of my article? Or are you going to give only tiny little quips?

You sure make grand claims of pathetic writing, but you only bring specific objections to minor side issues. WTF?

 
At 6/08/2005 12:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

dawson,

Dude stop calling me paul. I took it that you were not 'bob' so maybe you could do the same.


Alright let's stop the bait and switch dawson. Go back and read the first post that I had. I was arguing against the contention that one had to have material evidence for a belief to be justified/rational which ends in an infinite regress.


"Yes, the evidence for this is man himself. Man has a nature, and so does the means by which he discovers and validates knowledge. Man's material nature is my evidence for this."

Do you have material evidence that "the evidence for this is man himself"? Do you have 'material' evidence for this 'nature' (not the results/actions proceeding from that nature)?

 
At 6/08/2005 12:47 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Josh!!!

you said:

You made a little slip earlier when you said that, "faith is belief without evidence." In your article, though, you say that faith is belief not based on evidence. While similar, those are not the same.

Explain to me how they are different. I do not agree with you and so far this assertion of yours is unsupported. So support it.

Showing evidence does not destroy the faith base of Christianity, because the Bible states that no one will (truly) believe because of evidence. Enter the concept of the fallenness of man, with which I am sure you are familiar.

Bullshit. In the Bible, there are many instances of people who ONLY acquire belief when they see MATERIAL evidence in the form of miracles.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:51 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

anonymous said:

I want to see some 'material' evidence for you guys contention that unless *beliefs* have 'material' evidence then they are unjustified/irrational/whatever.

Easy. For example, I have material evidence that I own a Mustang. I have a registration printout, a car loan, and a Mustang in the parking lot. It is independenly verifiable.

Now, if I were to not have any of these material evidences (registration, car, loan, etc...), then my belief of owning a Mustang would be unjustified/irrational/whatever.

Wasnt that fun?

 
At 6/08/2005 12:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

Aaron says, "Which belief of mine are you referring to? You say per above but I dont know which belief of mine you are talking about. Be more specific and we can see if I got material evidence for it or not. We can look at my own beliefs and see which of them do or do not rest on "logical proof" or "material evidence"."

Aaron no offense but you are a little late. this has been stated over and over and over. Again - Do you have 'material' evidence for the **belief** that 'material' evidence is required for rationality/justification? This is no minor side issue but the only one I brought up. Wish I could say more but i'm at work.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

"Easy. For example, I have material evidence that I own a Mustang. I have a registration printout, a car loan, and a Mustang in the parking lot. It is independenly verifiable.

Now, if I were to not have any of these material evidences (registration, car, loan, etc...), then my belief of owning a Mustang would be unjustified/irrational/whatever."


Congratulations on missing the point aaron. The contention was for you to provide material evidence that *only* material evidence is sufficient for justification.

 
At 6/08/2005 12:58 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

anonymous said:

"I tell you what not reformed, I'll answer you if you first answer the questions that you were asked prior to this."

Gladly. I'll eagerly await your responses. Should I list all of the questions you didn't answer to make it easy, or are you just going to focus on 'the divinity of Phil?'

"I want to see some 'material' evidence for you guys contention that unless *beliefs* have 'material' evidence then they are unjustified/irrational/whatever."

First off, I did not ever make that statement. You said I did because I accepted Aaron's 'hidden premise,' but I did not make that statement.

The points that were raised by Aaron in this recent blog entry were these, and my comments are included:

1. All faith is blind; there is no difference between blind faith and regular faith.

Aaron compared the Biblical definition for faith (as he was chided for not doing previously) and the evil secular dictionary definition. Both were very similar. Faith in Jehovah, Zeus, Mithra, and Darth Maul is all based on a DESIRE to believe, not on material evidence.

You say that it is unfair for a non-believer to call your faith 'irrational,' and yet you would do the EXACT SAME THING if a doctor told you that they were going to chop off your head to cure your common cold. You'd want reasons, scientific studies, and evidence before you'd call this a 'rational' treatment. Why suspend this process which is used for everything else in life when it comes to Jehovah?

2. Faith is belief without evidence or reason.

What is untrue about this? If there is evidence, or reason for a statement, faith is not required.

3. Faith is required for salvation (Hebrews 11:6).

According to the bible, which you believers wouldn't not deny, I'm sure.

4. To have reason and evidence for Christianity is to not have faith.

Yes. this is why some presuppositionalists even think it is a SIN to provide evidential proofs...as it is putting evidence before belief in almighty Jehovah...and of course only Jehovah can grant a person this belief, but that's another issue altogether.

5. Without blind faith in Christianity, you are damned.

According to reformed theology as its been presented to me, only God can grant the faith needed for salvation. Without this faith, a person is screwed.

So anonymous, I am curious as to why you turn off your requirements for 'material evidence' when it comes to God, but not the rest of the world around you?

My 'material evidence' that you have requested is that the way us humans come to conclusions is based on sense perception, language, thinking, reasoning, all of which are 'material' in nature. I say it IS irrational and hypocritical for a Christian to suspend this process when it comes to God, but not the rest of the world they live in.

You may not like my answer, but I did answer. So, I eagerly await your answer to this:

"So anonymous, do you still deny the divinity of Phil? "

 
At 6/08/2005 1:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

"In the Bible, there are many instances of people who ONLY acquire belief when they see MATERIAL evidence in the form of miracles."


So are you saying that faith/belief can be the result of evidence?

 
At 6/08/2005 1:04 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Pathetic: "Alright let's stop the bait and switch dawson. Go back and read the first post that I had. I was arguing against the contention that one had to have material evidence for a belief to be justified/rational which ends in an infinite regress."

It does not result in an infinite regress if one has an objective starting point, namely the Objectivist axioms.

Me: "Yes, the evidence for this is man himself. Man has a nature, and so does the means by which he discovers and validates knowledge. Man's material nature is my evidence for this."

Pathetic: "Do you have material evidence that 'the evidence for this is man himself'?"

Yes, man himself.

Pathetic: "Do you have 'material' evidence for this 'nature' (not the results/actions proceeding from that nature)?"

Yes, man's biological nature.

 
At 6/08/2005 1:10 PM, Blogger Zachary Moore declaimed...

Anonymous: Well that goods you don't think they did but i asked you to step inside Christianity (for an internal critique) and Christ said they did and they would not have been saved if not.

Right. Stepping inside Christianity, we see that 1) Faith is things in things unseen, 2) The apostles did not have faith, 3) Christ claimed the apostles were saved through faith.

So that's a pretty tight internal contradiction, then. Christianity is false.

 
At 6/08/2005 1:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

NR said, "First off, I did not ever make that statement. You said I did because I accepted Aaron's 'hidden premise,' but I did not make that statement."

The statement was implied in the article which has been stated over and over and over and over and over. So do i not need 'material' evidence for holding a 'rational' belief?


"2. Faith is belief without evidence or reason.

What is untrue about this? If there is evidence, or reason for a statement, faith is not required."

This has been addressed over and over as well. Heard of the apostles? Did they have faith?



"3. Faith is required for salvation (Hebrews 11:6).

According to the bible, which you believers wouldn't not deny, I'm sure."


Yes.


"4. To have reason and evidence for Christianity is to not have faith.

Yes. this is why some presuppositionalists even think it is a SIN to provide evidential proofs...as it is putting evidence before belief in almighty Jehovah...and of course only Jehovah can grant a person this belief, but that's another issue altogether."

Huh? Maybe you could provide some quotes from presupps here for me? You do know there is a difference b/w reasons and causes, right?

I also deny this entire point as per the apostles, etc. who had faith with evidence (not implying that we don't).


"5. Without blind faith in Christianity, you are damned.

According to reformed theology as its been presented to me, only God can grant the faith needed for salvation. Without this faith, a person is screwed."


5 is wrong per #4 - #4 was rejected so 5 does not follow. Ever heard the verse that starts, "Come let us reason..."?



"So anonymous, I am curious as to why you turn off your requirements for 'material evidence' when it comes to God, but not the rest of the world around you?"

HMMM have you not been reading? This is not my requirement. Please do yourself a favor and go back and read.


"My 'material evidence' that you have requested is that the way us humans come to conclusions is based on sense perception, language, thinking, reasoning, all of which are 'material' in nature. I say it IS irrational and hypocritical for a Christian to suspend this process when it comes to God, but not the rest of the world they live in."


So you have the belief that "the way us humans come to conclusions is based on sense perception, language, thinking, reasoning, all of which are 'material' in nature." Where is the material evidence for this belief? Do you have material evidence that this is the only means by which people come to conclusions is what you have mentioned? Maybe you observed that but I wanted the material evidence. You consider language to be material?

 
At 6/08/2005 1:21 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

anonymous,

I said:

"You may not like my answer, but I did answer. So, I eagerly await your answer to this:

"So anonymous, do you still deny the divinity of Phil? "

I must have missed this in your resposne. I will work on your questions after you repond, as you stated you would.

Thanks!

 
At 6/08/2005 1:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

NR said, "I must have missed this in your resposne. I will work on your questions after you repond, as you stated you would."


So there is none? Could you throw (literally) it my way? Well I guess I don't need material evidence to support faith in God either.....

 
At 6/08/2005 1:28 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

anonymous,

I said:

"You may not like my answer, but I did answer. So, I eagerly await your answer to this:

"So anonymous, do you still deny the divinity of Phil? "

I must have missed this in your resposne. I will work on your questions after you repond, as you stated you would.

Thanks!

 
At 6/08/2005 1:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

guys it's been fun but with all the responses to reply to I am going to have to finish this after work or tomorrow...

thanks...

 
At 6/08/2005 1:29 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Pathetic: "So you have the belief that "the way us humans come to conclusions is based on sense perception, language, thinking, reasoning, all of which are 'material' in nature."

As I said earlier, reason is the faculty which identifies and integrates what we perceive.

Pathetic: "Where is the material evidence for this belief?"

Human beings are evidence of this.

Pathetic: "Do you have material evidence that this is the only means by which people come to conclusions is what you have mentioned?"

To ask for "evidence" implies the standard of reason to begin with. Rationality is the commitment to reason as one's only means of acquiring and validating knowledge, and his only guide to action. If you think you have "knowledge" apart from reason, then you are aligning yourself with irrationality, by definition.

Pathetic: "Maybe you observed that but I wanted the material evidence."

Man is the evidence, and he is a biological organism. I didn't learn this from the bible, though.

Pathetic: "You consider language to be material?"

Language is a system of auditory and visual symbols, such as the physical vibrations of sound waves moving through the air to the ear, or the physical markings on a page or computer screen. So yes, to the extent that physical = material.

 
At 6/08/2005 1:31 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Pathetic: "guys it's been fun but with all the responses to reply to I am going to have to finish this after work or tomorrow..."

You've been answered. Now, if you have a positive argument for your god's existence, by all means, please trot it out. Specifically, I want to see how something that is natural, material, finite and corruptible can serve as evidence of that which contradicts it. When you're able to address this without trickery and double-talk, please do so. If you cannot answer it, you won't be able to hide this from us.

 
At 6/08/2005 1:32 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

Now I'm going to have to think anonymous = Paul because he also is running.

Anonymous said:

"I tell you what not reformed, I'll answer you if you first answer the questions that you were asked prior to this."

I answered your question. You didn't like it. That's fine. But you still failed to answer mine, as you promised to do.

However, I understand you have work to do...so I'll look here later for your answer to:

"So anonymous, do you still deny the divinity of Phil?"

Our Phil is an awesome Phil!!

 
At 6/08/2005 1:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

"You've been answered. Now, if you have a positive argument for your god's existence, by all means, please trot it out. Specifically, I want to see how something that is natural, material, finite and corruptible can serve as evidence of that which contradicts it. When you're able to address this without trickery and double-talk, please do so. If you cannot answer it, you won't be able to hide this from us."


Alright I couldn't help it.. But no I have not been answered and will reply later... Stop changing the subject dudson...

 
At 6/08/2005 1:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

"I answered your question. You didn't like it. That's fine. But you still failed to answer mine, as you promised to do."

And no you did not answer it as I still don't see any material evidence for your belief...

 
At 6/08/2005 1:53 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

"material evidence" ? Why do the morons qualify the term "evidence" ? You guys should have jumped on that immediately. There is no such thing as "immaterial evidence".

 
At 6/08/2005 2:03 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

francois said:

"material evidence" ? Why do the morons qualify the term "evidence" ? You guys should have jumped on that immediately. There is no such thing as "immaterial evidence"

:) LOL! That is a very good point.

 
At 6/08/2005 2:04 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

anon:

And no you did not answer it as I still don't see any material evidence for your belief...

me:

I did answer, not my problem if you don't like it. I will assume you have no answer for my question. Phil hasn't chosen you to be regenerated, apparently.

 
At 6/08/2005 2:06 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Anonymous,

You said:

Congratulations on missing the point aaron. The contention was for you to provide material evidence that *only* material evidence is sufficient for justification.


Notice the *only* part. What you are doing here is asking me to prove a negative. I fully understood your point but I only offered you a positive statement to justify material evidence. I will not give you any proof of any negatives, as it is not my burden to do so.

Anonymous, you feel that non-material evidences can be used to justify beliefs. I do not. You asked me to prove that *only* material evidences can be used to justify beliefs, and that is asking me to prove a negative.

Anonymous, you are the one proposing that non-material (faith-based) evidences are acceptable for belief justification. It is not my responsibility to disprove your unsupported assertion.

Anonymous, you are the one making the positive charge. You support it. The proper question should be asked of you, not me, and it should be phrased like this:

Can you provide any support for your position that non-material evidences can justify beliefs?

 
At 6/08/2005 2:08 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Anon said:

So are you saying that faith/belief can be the result of evidence?


Nope!!! Im saying that material evidence DESTROYS faith. Therefore, I am saying that there are characters in the Bible who believed in God but HAD NO FAITH, for they had material evidence instead.

 
At 6/08/2005 2:09 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Anon said:

This has been addressed over and over as well. Heard of the apostles? Did they have faith?

Nope! They had material evidence!

 
At 6/08/2005 2:12 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Anon said:

I also deny this entire point as per the apostles, etc. who had faith with evidence (not implying that we don't).


Then do you reject the definition of faith as defined by the dictionary and the Bible?

What is YOUR definition of faith then, if it is not the definition of the dictionary, or the bible?

Remember, that I am using the definition of Faith as being belief without material evidence or logical proof; belief in things hoped for and things unseen etc...

 
At 6/08/2005 2:38 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Aaron wrote: "You asked me to prove that *only* material evidences can be used to justify beliefs, and that is asking me to prove a negative."

and

"I will not give you any proof of any negatives, as it is not my burden to do so.

Exactly right. This is a very important point that Aaron makes here, and for us it requires only a two-step process:

Step 1: Identify those instances at which the apologist is trying to lay on us a burden to prove a negative claim.

Step 2: Remind the apologist of the fact that we have no such burden.

Pathetic: "Did they have faith?"

Aaron: "Nope! They had material evidence!"

Right again. According to the NT, Jesus allegedly paid personal visits to the apostles and performed miracles before them, and it was on this basis that they believed. The whole lesson of Doubting Thomas in the gospel of John is that the rest of us should believe WITHOUT any evidence whatsoever. The Doubting Thomas lesson in John is the NT's admission to the fact that there is no evidence on which any of us today could base our faith in the allegedly risen Jesus, since we don't have access to any physical evidence, while the apostles did. Also, as Aaron points out, Christians today cannot claim that the apostles had faith, for they saw Jesus personally.

Remember Romans 8:24, which says: "For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?"

Compare this with Ephesians 2:8 which states: "For by grace are ye saved through faith."

And I don't think I have to quote Heb. 11:1 again to show that faith is defined in terms of what is "hoped for."

So your case is solid, Aaron, going by what the bible itself says. The apostles had seen Jesus already. So on the apostle Paul's reasoning, they wouldn't have "hoped" for Jesus ("for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?"). And since for the apostles Jesus was not "hoped for," one could not say they believed or acted "on faith."

 
At 6/08/2005 2:50 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

It's also interesting to note that, in the fairy tale of the Gospels, when "Jesus" comes back some of the apostles outright didn't recognize him ! And they didn't believe either, until they recognized him (or were told that it was "Jesus", and "saw" it, much like people "hear" sentences in EVP).

 
At 6/08/2005 3:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

I will address as much as I can while i'm still here... (hit a slow spot at work!) :)


Aaron says, "Notice the *only* part. What you are doing here is asking me to prove a negative. I fully understood your point but I only offered you a positive statement to justify material evidence. I will not give you any proof of any negatives, as it is not my burden to do so."

No I am not asking you to prove a 'negative'. I am asking you to prove your assertion that rational belief only entails things that are evidenced by material evidence with material evidence. If you can't this would leave your very assertion that all things (ideas) have to be proved with material evidence unproved.


"Anonymous, you feel that non-material evidences can be used to justify beliefs. I do not. You asked me to prove that *only* material evidences can be used to justify beliefs, and that is asking me to prove a negative."

Since you don't believe there are nonmaterial evidences then that enforces the *only*. Again I am asking you to prove the assertion... Unless you can show me material evidence all i can conclude is that you take that statement (assertion) by faith which according to you would make it unevidenced.


"Anonymous, you are the one proposing that non-material (faith-based) evidences are acceptable for belief justification. It is not my responsibility to disprove your unsupported assertion."

See above. Also I accept material and immaterial evidences.


"Anonymous, you are the one making the positive charge. You support it. The proper question should be asked of you, not me, and it should be phrased like this:"

No as has been shown you are making the 'positive' charge and I want the same type of evidence which you require of the theist to support your so far unsupported claim.


"Can you provide any support for your position that non-material evidences can justify beliefs?"

Yes the laws of logic. Universals.

 
At 6/08/2005 3:42 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Pathetic: "the laws of logic. Universals."

How would you go about proving that these are not material? Bahnsen didn't provide a proof to this effect in his debate with Stein, even though he repeated the claim over and over that "the laws of logic" are "immaterial entities." What precisely is an entity that is "immaterial," and how would someone prove definitively that there are such things as "immaterial entities."

 
At 6/08/2005 4:44 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Anonymous said:

No as has been shown you are making the 'positive' charge and I want the same type of evidence which you require of the theist to support your so far unsupported claim.


Here are the positive charges I am making:

1. Justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof.

2. Faith is defined as belief without logical proof or material evidence.

3. Faith is not a justification for holding a position.

Those are my positive claims.

To expand on them, I say this: Justification for a position requires independent verification of objective truths. This means that the position must be observable and testable by oneself and any peer to be justified. Because faith is belief without independent testability of observation, then faith does not justify belief in a position.

The burden of proof for BOTH the atheist and the theist is like this: To justify a position with reason X, the reason X must be verifiable outside and independently of the one who asserts"

Now, material evidence and logical proof meet this burden of proof, because they can be verified outside and independently of the one who asserts.

Faith does not meet this burden of proof. This is because faith is not independently verifiable outside of the one who asserts.

Material evidence says "dont take my word for it, see for yourself"

Faith says "trust my words"

This is why material evidence meets the burden of proof, and faith does not.

So anonymous, I just supported my positive charges. Now why dont you explain to me why Im wrong and why "faith" does meet the burden of proof?

 
At 6/08/2005 4:58 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

By the way, the laws of logic are purely material.

Logic exists in two ways:

1. Logic exists as a concept in the human mind, as a tool for understanding behavior and properties of reality. All concpets and thoughts are material in the form of electrons and neural pathways in the organ known as the brain.

2. Logic exists as the property or behavior of reality and matter/energy. Logic exists as long as reality exists. Logic is material in that it is the behavior and nature of matter/energy, which is material.

Logic is just as material as velocity. It is just as material as temperature. It is just as material as gravity.

"Immaterial" is synonymous with "nonexistant".

 
At 6/08/2005 5:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

Aaron,

First off, I must say that I have been waiting for you to pull off your 'ad hom' belt and spank dawson's ass. :) j/k.

On to your comments....

Aaron says, “Here are the positive charges I am making:

1. Justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof.

2. Faith is defined as belief without logical proof or material evidence.

3. Faith is not a justification for holding a position.

Those are my positive claims.”


I know those are you positive claims, which is what I’ve been saying all along. Now I want the material evidence/logical proof that justification requires material evidence or logical proof. Don’t tell me you hold this “without logical proof or material evidence”?


“To expand on them, I say this: Justification for a position requires independent verification of objective truths. This means that the position must be observable and testable by oneself and any peer to be justified. Because faith is belief without independent testability of observation, then faith does not justify belief in a position.”

Is this belief observable and testable itself so as to provide justification for it’s acceptance? Read below.


”The burden of proof for BOTH the atheist and the theist is like this: To justify a position with reason X, the reason X must be verifiable outside and independently of the one who asserts"”

So now what is a good reason for holding that reason X must be verifiable outside and independently of the one who asserts (let’s say reason Y)? Then what is a good reason for holding reason Y? So on ad infinitum. This will bring me back to my first post as it becomes an infinite regress.


”Now, material evidence and logical proof meet this burden of proof, because they can be verified outside and independently of the one who asserts. “

See above.


“Faith does not meet this burden of proof. This is because faith is not independently verifiable outside of the one who asserts.”

Neither does your material evidence.


”Material evidence says "dont take my word for it, see for yourself"”

Faith says "trust my words"."

That’s what it "says"? You independently verified this how?

 
At 6/08/2005 10:49 PM, Blogger Josh declaimed...

Aaron!!! ;)

You said: "Explain to me how they are different. I do not agree with you and so far this assertion of yours is unsupported. So support it."

Support the assertion that two phrases are not the same? OK. You said "faith is belief without evidence"(1) in a comment, and "faith is belief not based on evidence"(2) in your article. The difference? (1) says that one believes in the abscence of evidence. (2) says that there may or may not be evidence, but regardless it (faith) is not based on that evidence. So in short: (2) assumes that no evidence exists.

You said: "Bullshit. In the Bible, there are many instances of people who ONLY acquire belief when they see MATERIAL evidence in the form of miracles."

I would contend that while they believed when they saw the evidence, they did not believe because of the evidence, but rather because God irrestibly drewn them to himself. Research Calvinism.

 
At 6/09/2005 12:18 AM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

josh said:

"Research Calvinism."

Here's what I found:

"Yet consider now, whether women are not quite past sense and reason, when they want to rule over men."

John Calvin

"Knowledge of the sciences is so much smoke apart from the heavenly science of Christ."

John Calvin

"I consider looseness with words no less of a defect than looseness of the bowels."

John Calvin

"Every one of us is, even from his mother's womb, a master craftsman of idols."

John Calvin

This one is especially humorous:

"Who will venture to place the authority of Copernicus above that of the Holy Spirit?"

John Calvin

More background on that spiritual giant, John Calvin:

When Calvin came to power in Geneva, he first established a set of "Ordinances," and a committee called the "Consistory" to oversee adherence to the rules. These "spiritual police" would knock on doors and ask questions, go through people's books and letters, and were not to be resisted. Once a month, everyone in town, old or young, rich or poor, was required to submit to questioning, as to whether they knew their prayers, or why they had missed one of Master Calvin's sermons.

Prohibition extended to theater, festivals, dancing, singing, cards, fancy clothing, jewelry, lace, extra buttons or bows, iceskating, and sports in general. Girls were forbidden to wear silk before the age of 15, after that age they were not allowed to wear velvet. Wheeled carriages were prohibited, family feasts of over 20 people were forbidden. At weddings, betrothals, and baptisms, no more than a specified number of courses was to be served, and no fruit or candy. Game, four-footed or winged, and pastry, were all prohibited.

Married people were not allowed to exchange gifts until they had been married six months. Any sculpture or public art was forbidden. A special permit was required to print anything for publication. It was forbidden to write letters abroad, and local mail was all read by the committee, coming and going.

The naming of children was under strict church control. Only Biblical names were allowed. Feasting was prohibited for Christmas and Easter.

Everyone was encouraged to spy on everyone else, children on their parents, workers against each other, servants against their masters.

Thousands of people were imprisoned, tortured, and burned to death during Calvin's reign, but he never attended the final Autos de Fe.

Here is a quote from Stephan Zweig's "The Right To Heresy:"

"Most savagely of all were punished any offenders whose behavior challenged Calvin's political and spiritual infalliblity. A man who had publicly protested against the reformer's doctrine of predestination was mercilessly flogged at all the crossways of the city and then expelled. A book printer who, in his cups, had railed at Calvin was sentenced to have his tongue perforated with a red-hot iron before being expelled from the city. Jacques Gruet was racked and then executed merely for having called Calvin a hypocrite."
Calvinism has spread far and wide, coloring many strands of Christianity, including American Bible-Belt Fundamentalism. Geneva, unlike other comparable European cities, produced no great musicians or artists during the renaissance, because of Calvin, until Jean Jaques Rousseau, in 1712.

Any other gems from Calvin that would be important for us to know?

 
At 6/09/2005 7:29 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

NR: "....Jacques Gruet was racked and then executed merely for having called Calvin a hypocrite...."

And this, they tell us, is a religion of love? If it's about "love," it's not love of man and his values, but of controlling him with fear and force. And still they want to point to someone like John Calvin as an authority? They must be really miserable individuals.

 
At 6/09/2005 9:15 AM, Anonymous Anonymous declaimed...

Logic may be viewed, perhaps, as a machine which is
designed, at best, to be such that when we feed into it
certain data and turn the logic crank, we inevitably get
certain conclusions out the other end. Logic is designed to
give inevitably true results starting from known true -- or
assumed-to-be-true—premises. Logic is a wonderful tool when
we want only logical conclusions. We should not reject such
a machine merely because it is not equipped to handle all of
reality. The scientist who commits himself to use a logic
machine is doing wisely, qua scientist, for use on data of
science. But if he feeds into that machine convictions that
there is not God, or ignores God because He is not in his
corpus of data, and then draws from his logic the conclusion
that God does not exist, his conclusion is irrelevant. Logic
is a tool; it should not be made into a religion.
... Kenneth L. Pike (1912-2001)

 
At 6/09/2005 12:03 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Josh sadi:

"I would contend that while they believed when they saw the evidence, they did not believe because of the evidence, but rather because God irrestibly drewn them to himself."

Can you support that assertion? Or are you just imagining it out of thin air? Which Biblical quote supports this assertion of yours?

"Research Calvinism."

Not Reformed hooked us up with some Calvin research. He seems like a real tolerant loving and humanistic person ;)

 
At 6/09/2005 4:41 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

Once again you guys miss all the best ones. "Research Calvinism" ? Who the fuck wants to do that ? Have they researched quantum physics, or Neo-Darwinism, or the epistemology of sense perception ? These are all topics they rant against, but do they know the first thing about them ?

 
At 6/09/2005 5:20 PM, Blogger Josh declaimed...

Aaron said: "Can you support that assertion? Or are you just imagining it out of thin air? Which Biblical quote supports this assertion of yours?"

Again, research Calvinism.

Aaron said: "Not Reformed hooked us up with some Calvin research. He seems like a real tolerant loving and humanistic person ;)"

Who cares what John Calvin was like? If you don't like calling it that, then research Augustinianism. Dismissing a theory based entirely on the fact the you don't like one of its proponents is just silly.

Francois said: "'Research Calvinism' ? Who the fuck wants to do that ? Have they researched quantum physics, or Neo-Darwinism, or the epistemology of sense perception ? These are all topics they rant against, but do they know the first thing about them ?"

Please show me where I have ranted about physics, Neo-Darwinism, or the epistemology of sense perception. You want to trash Reformed theology without understanding it? Fine. Have fun with all those straw men.

 
At 6/09/2005 5:22 PM, Blogger Josh declaimed...

BTW, one quick verse to support the assertion that no one comes unless God draws:

John 6:44
"No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him"

 
At 6/09/2005 6:16 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

josh:

"Who cares what John Calvin was like?"

Uh...I think its somewhat valid to look at the main creator of CALVINISM when you asked us to. Calvin was a monster, and his ideas have spawned the same.

 
At 6/09/2005 6:20 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

josh:

"Dismissing a theory based entirely on the fact the you don't like one of its proponents is just silly."

How about dismissing this 'theory' because the book on which its based is a piece of crap?

Not to mention the monster that interpreted it into 'Calvinism.'

 
At 6/09/2005 7:23 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

"Again, research Calvinism.
"


Its not my job to research Calvinism for you. And besides, Im asking what YOU have to support your assertion, not what Calvin has. If you hold to his views then present them here. I dont tell you to research my position; I present the material right here for you.

Calvin is not in here debating with me, but you are. So if you would support your assertions as I support mine, I would appreciate it.

If you ask me to research Calvinism, you are essentially asking ME to support your assertion FOR you. I will not do this in the way that you like it. If I am the one to go research Calvinism, I will come back here and simply state that Calvin didnt even present decent arguments for his position and that he has no coherent argument. I would present his material in such a way as to make it seem very unfavorable. Im sure that you would consider this a misrperesentation, and you would claim that I am making strawmen or lying about what Calvinism said. But you would still refuse to support your assertions anyway.

I would never ask a creationist to present my evolution defense FOR me. I would never ask the man suing me to manage my defese in a court of law.

So why do you want me to present your Calvinism case for you? I refuse to do so simply to protect your position and give you a fair chance to support your assertions. For if I am the one to support your assertions for you, I can garuntee that I will not do it fairly in your eyes.

 
At 6/09/2005 8:54 PM, Blogger Josh declaimed...

Not Reformed said: "Uh...I think its somewhat valid to look at the main creator of CALVINISM when you asked us to. Calvin was a monster, and his ideas have spawned the same."

Calvin did not create Calvinism. Calvinism has been taught by Jesus, Paul, the early church, Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Toplady, Hodge, Van Til, Sproul, Bahnsen, etc. Note that Calvinism began MUCH before Calvin was even born. It is called "Calvinism" because he was (in)famous for his adherence to it. I could just as easily call it Augustinianism, Paulianism, Jesusism, or Christianity.

Oh, and btw, Plato (and, consequently, philosophy) is wrong because Plato was a pedaphile.

Not Reformed said: "How about dismissing this 'theory' because the book on which its based is a piece of crap?"

You are ripping up a doctrine based on a book you don't believe. That's like saying Copernicus was wrong because his book was wrong. It's a tautology. You must, for the sake of argument, assume the Bible to be right.

Aaron said: "Its not my job to research Calvinism for you. And besides, Im asking what YOU have to support your assertion, not what Calvin has. If you hold to his views then present them here. I dont tell you to research my position; I present the material right here for you. [...]"

So it's OK for me to attack evolution when I have no knowledge of it? After all, since you adhere to it, it is your responsibility to present it to me and teach me. Go to it.

 
At 6/09/2005 8:56 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

"Oh, and btw, Plato (and, consequently, philosophy) is wrong because Plato was a pedaphile."

I may have a spotty memory, but I read all the dialogues many times when I was younger, and I don't remember a single instance of Plato putting his dick in a boy's anus.

 
At 6/09/2005 10:15 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

josh:

"You are ripping up a doctrine based on a book you don't believe."

Yes.

"That's like saying Copernicus was wrong because his book was wrong."

Sounds good.

"It's a tautology. You must, for the sake of argument, assume the Bible to be right."

Actually, no, I 'must' do no such thing.

However, I think that *the force* is the true guiding power of the universe, and I've read about it in many sacred Star Wars books. You *must* assume they are all correct, and then it all makes sense, right?

Believe me, I've heard many times from calvinists and presuppers that I *must* do an internal critique of their man-made books and theologies...and yet they do not do the same thing for all of the other religions they reject. So...

 
At 6/10/2005 11:34 AM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

The Bible is wrong because the Christian churches in America just passed the $1billion mark in payouts to child-rape victims.

Praise Jesus!

 
At 6/10/2005 12:35 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

Any material evidence/logical proof or is it based on faith?

 
At 6/10/2005 12:42 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

groundfigher said:

"Any material evidence/logical proof or is it based on faith?"

Not sure which "it" you're talking about, but if you're talking about the Bible, then I'd have to say No, there isn't any indisputable evidence or logical proof for the authenticity of the Bible, so people believe in it based on faith alone.

 
At 6/10/2005 12:44 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

although, GF, if you have indisputable evidence/logical proofs for the authenticity of the Bible, I'm sure everyone would love to see it.

And you still didn't answer if you believe in the truth of the sacred texts of Phil.

 
At 6/10/2005 12:51 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

Material evidence/logical proof for the assertion that "justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof".

 
At 6/10/2005 12:52 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

"And you still didn't answer if you believe in the truth of the sacred texts of Phil."


Doesn't matter and if you want it answered then ask it on another blog entry - stop trying to throw out red herrings.... my purpose is to take away any objection even if I accepted what you mean by faith....

 
At 6/10/2005 12:55 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

GF, I was just reading SLOWLY through your last statement:

Do you have

"Material evidence/logical proof for the assertion that "justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof".

Are you saying that for a position to be 'justified' it doesn't require any of those 3 things?

 
At 6/10/2005 12:59 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

GF, I was just reading SLOWLY through your last statement:

Do you have

"Material evidence/logical proof for the assertion that "justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof".

"Are you saying that for a position to be 'justified' it doesn't require any of those 3 things?"


No I've stated it over and over. Here's from an earlier post:

Aaron said, "1. Justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof.

2. Faith is defined as belief without logical proof or material evidence.

3. Faith is not a justification for holding a position.

Those are my positive claims."


I said, "I know those are you positive claims, which is what I’ve been saying all along. Now I want the material evidence/logical proof that justification requires material evidence or logical proof. Don’t tell me you hold this “without logical proof or material evidence”?"

 
At 6/10/2005 1:05 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

GF,

I think I get the concept you're trying to point out, but I just don't see how it applies to the reasoning process humans use in their daily lives.

Besides God, what do people accept on faith without any evidence or logical proof?

 
At 6/10/2005 1:10 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

NR said, "I think I get the concept you're trying to point out, but I just don't see how it applies to the reasoning process humans use in their daily lives."

It's easy. I want the same requirements for aaron that he requires of christians (assuming that he is correct with his 'definition'). If everything needs justification with material evidence/logical proof, then it follows that this statement needs the same thing. If you want to take to be 'self-evident' or by 'faith - per your definition', then you prove my point. This is where these arguments get 'in trouble'.



Besides God, what do people accept on faith without any evidence or logical proof?

 
At 6/10/2005 1:11 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

NR said, "Besides God, what do people accept on faith without any evidence or logical proof?"

Sorry I neglected this statement. Well the statement (assertion) that "Justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof".

 
At 6/10/2005 1:28 PM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

How do we attract these whackos ? No, we don't have faith in "justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof". That's called "rationality" - the OPPOSITE of faith. It is justified by the objectivity of reality and the materialist nature of reality - once again, no faith there. In fact, Christian faith says the exact opposite - that you don't need any material evidence to believe anything.

 
At 6/10/2005 1:29 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

groundfighter76 said:

Material evidence/logical proof for the assertion that "justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof".

I have logical proofs for this assertion. A=A. Existence exists. Law of identity. Law of non contradiction. Etc...

Basically, the axioms of logic.

What are you groundfighter76, a nihilist?

 
At 6/10/2005 2:03 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

Aaron said, "I have logical proofs for this assertion. A=A. Existence exists. Law of identity. Law of non contradiction. Etc...

Basically, the axioms of logic."


Aaron,

Do you know what an axiom is? Something that is what? Self-evident? Here you go, "A self-evident principle or one that is accepted as true *without proof* as the basis for argument; a postulate. "


"What are you groundfighter76, a nihilist?"

You really don't know what you are talking about do you?

 
At 6/10/2005 2:04 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

In other words, an axiom does not meet the requirement you have set forth.

 
At 6/10/2005 2:23 PM, Blogger CADman904 declaimed...

Do you know what an axiom is? Something that is what? Self-evident? "A self-evident principle or one that is accepted as true *without proof* as the basis for argument; a postulate. "

Actually its really quite simple. Axioms are propositions which are based upon concepts. The axioms are themselves a concept which means they are not "principles" in the sense of a proposition. Yes these concepts are "self-evident" however you neglected to mention:

* It must be irreducible to prior concepts (i.e. foundational).
* It must be self-evident to all acts of cognition (be they introspective or extrospective).
* It must be undeniable without direct contradiction (committing the fallacy of the Stolen Concept).

The type of foundationalism that you are attempting to lay upon us is that of internalism first formulated by Descarte and reached its full fruition in Kant. Descartes foundationalism is close but he neglected to take into account that there was something more foundational to his particular view - namely that he cannot be conscious without there being something to be conscious of. That fact is existence. Our view is not quite externalism for we view a causal interaction between the senses and existence.

 
At 6/10/2005 2:33 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

cadman says, "they are not "principles" in the sense of a proposition. Yes these concepts are "self-evident" however you neglected to mention:

* It must be irreducible to prior concepts (i.e. foundational).
* It must be self-evident to all acts of cognition (be they introspective or extrospective).
* It must be undeniable without direct contradiction (committing the fallacy of the Stolen Concept)."

Thank you cadman as you have just proven my point. Maybe you should go back and read what we've been discussing. You said they were self-evident which contradictions the very assertion that aaron was postulating. You then make a few qualifications which don't really matter as it is already been made self-evident.

 
At 6/10/2005 2:52 PM, Blogger CADman904 declaimed...

If I may put words in Aarons mouth for a moment...

Justification is the act of reducing one's propositions to sense data or to the evidence to which the concepts belong.

Validation is the act that one does to arrive at base axiomatic concepts.

If we made the claim that our base axioms required justification then you are correct in your assertion but that is not the claim we are making about axiomatic concepts and axioms. We are claiming that our axiomatic concepts cannot be invalidated because to do so would be to commit a stolen concept fallacy.

One arrives at the axiomatic concept of existence via every existent every though, action etc etc. Those are the "units" that make up existence.

Descarte got into trouble because he attempted to base his foundationalism upon consciousness but as our foundationalism points out consciousness cannot exist without something to be aware of - no sense data no consciousness.

One does not "justfiy" them however one cannot invalidate them either.

 
At 6/10/2005 3:33 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 6/10/2005 3:36 PM, Blogger groundfighter76 declaimed...

Cadman,

so are you changing aaron's first premise that "1. Justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof." to "Justification is the act of reducing one's propositions to sense data or to the evidence to which the concepts belong."


Now if you are please retell the aaron's argument since as it has been reformulated and would not make much sense.

 
At 6/10/2005 3:59 PM, Blogger CADman904 declaimed...

so are you changing aaron's first premise that "1. Justification of a position requires material evidence or logical proof." to "Justification is the act of reducing one's propositions to sense data or to the evidence to which the concepts belong."

No.

Aaron is correct in his statement. Justification in a position [ I will change this to proposition] is based upon evidence or logical proof. This is correct.

However, propositions are made of concepts which, when one asks "To what in reality does this concept refer?" one is breaking one propositions into their constituate components. The base of which in any concept are implicit axiomatic concepts which are just as Aaron has described them here:

-----------

I have logical proofs for this assertion. A=A. Existence exists. Law of identity. Law of non contradiction. Etc...

Basically, the axioms of logic.

------------

While AAron calls them "proofs" I would like to think that Aaron is saying that his proofs are validated base concepts. The base concepts from which propositions are made and their correlaries - logic as the result of identity.

We are not just pulling an axiom out of thin air - we are reducing the very propositions themselves back to their roots.

We cannot justify existence, identity and consciousness - however we can validate them - validate is a broader term than justify and means that I have no reason to doubt whether or not this is the base of cognition. Having set our base we can build off of these axiomatic concepts to produce "proof" and/or logical propositions about reality.

 
At 6/10/2005 4:18 PM, Blogger CADman904 declaimed...

Different attempts at foundational justification

Descartes idea was to create a foundational truth that was irrifutable 100% certain. This particular type was an internalist approach which, in the end, led to Hume and his inductive skepticism - Berkley in his rejection of causality and Kant in a total disconnected state of existence from reality.

On the opposite side we have externalists who say that there is a common sense world out there however they deny ANY conscious connection impinging itself upon reality which gives the internalists cause to fire back and say "How do you know that what you are looking at is really out there?

One group wants a first person foundationalism the other wants a third person foundationalism. Neither can accomplish the task.

Objectivism differs in that it says that there is a causal relation between whats out there and whats in here. One cannot cut cord - to do so results in epistemic irrationality.

 
At 6/10/2005 4:25 PM, Blogger CADman904 declaimed...

Sorry - I think it was Hume that had a problem with causality.

Anyway - this is another reason why we say that Hume's skepticism was wrong. He was denying causality all the while using it in his denial.

 
At 6/10/2005 4:26 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

GF76 said:

Aaron,

Do you know what an axiom is? Something that is what? Self-evident? Here you go, "A self-evident principle or one that is accepted as true *without proof* as the basis for argument; a postulate. "


Yes I am fully aware. This is my point actually. See, the self-evident axioms of logic are the logical proofs that I provide to support my assertion that material evidence or logical proof is required to justify a belief, including the belief that material evidence and logical proof are required to justify a belief.

If you think I dont know what Im talking about, then why dont you explain to me why Im wrong or incoherent rather than merely implications without any support for such implications?

Why am I the only one supporting my assertions here GF76? You should start supporting yours already. Sheesh.

 
At 6/10/2005 4:33 PM, Blogger Aaron Kinney declaimed...

Its very simple GF76. I am saying that existence exists. I am using axioms of logic to recognize that existence exists outside and indendently of my consciousness.

So I then take this recognizance to the next level, by saying that if I am to hold a belief (to perceive) that this perception/belief must be supported by something that is based on an axiom, namely, existence exists.

So in a nutshell, if I am to hold a belief (perception), I must support it with things (evidence) that EXIST, for existence exists, and if there is nothing that EXISTS to support this belief, then there is no reason to hold the position that what I believe actually exists.

Its simple, its justification based on axioms of logic, and its self-evident and practiced by every single human being that actually believes that things exist outside their mind.

Now do you understand why I threw out the nihilist jab?

 
At 6/10/2005 9:16 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

I just got back from school in Aneheim 4 days ago and it's interesting reading Dawson's infatuation with me, i.e., thinking I'm anonymous... anyway, it's no bother to me.

Aaron, maybe you could clarify? You said: " I am saying that existence exists."

Rocks exist, cars, trees, you, me, etc., but where does "existence" exist? I've never seen it. So, how should I read your sentence?

 
At 6/10/2005 11:27 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "Rocks exist"

Paul, can you explain where you got the concept 'exist' here?

Paul: "cars, trees, you, me, etc., but where does 'existence' exist? I've never seen it."

Are you saying that there is no existence?

Paul: "So, how should I read your sentence?"

As someone who's not afraid of the truth.

 
At 6/11/2005 1:29 AM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

Typical Randist Dawson is, isn't he? All questions, no interaction. All you've shown, dear Dawson, to the readers at least, is that you don't have an answer. Basically, you take the baffle 'em with B.S. tactic. So, my new approach with Dawson is that he cannot answer a question with a question, got that big D?

 
At 6/11/2005 10:32 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul, your response to my very simple questions only suggests that you are afraid of the truth.

I'm very curious about something:

Do you understand what Rand means by the statement "existence exists"?

Your statement to Aaron ("Rocks exist, cars, trees, you, me, etc., but where does "existence" exist? I've never seen it.") suggests you don't understand what Rand means. That is why I asked the questions I asked. As for "interaction," you didn't offer anything substantial to interact with, so I'm wondering what you were expecting.

Let me know if you can continue the conversation or not. Be prepared to explain where you got the concept 'exist', and be prepared to take a stand: Do you think existence exists, or not?

It's time to stop the pussyfooting, Big P.

 
At 6/11/2005 11:36 AM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 6/11/2005 11:40 AM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

Hey, Big D, how ya been? I'll dispense with further pleasantries and quote you:

"Do you understand what Rand means by the statement "existence exists"?

Your statement to Aaron ("Rocks exist, cars, trees, you, me, etc., but where does "existence" exist? I've never seen it.") suggests you don't understand what Rand means. That is why I asked the questions I asked. As for "interaction," you didn't offer anything substantial to interact with, so I'm wondering what you were expecting."


I know the answer, but I think it is linguistically confused and someone trained in the analytic tradition can make it look quite silly. So, I asked him to explain because as the sentence stands it is nonsense, unless you pour Rand's meaning into it, in which case s/he (you, Aaron, etc) will be exposed for your prejudice as well as seeing that your conception of "existence exists" isn't axiomatic.

Randists always confuse the phrase with their understanding or interpretation of the phrase.

Anyway, I can understand why someone wouldn't want that statement exposed to something like Wittgensteinian language analysis. Continue to try and bully, big D, it only hurts your reputation more and more. The more you write the more you expose your lack of knowledge.

 
At 6/11/2005 1:19 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "I know the answer,"

Can you tell us what Rand meant by the statement "existence exists" then? Show us what you know.

Paul: "but I think it is linguistically confused"

I did my undergraduate in linguistics. I don't see any confusion with Rand's axiom. So can you explain what you mean here? If you know what Rand means by the statement "existence exists," how can you say that this is "linguistically confused"?

Paul: "and someone trained in the analytic tradition can make it look quite silly."

Making something look silly is not much of an accomplishment, Paul. Anyone can make anything look silly. Aaron asked earlier if an irrationalist attending this comments board was a nihilist. I think he was right to ask this. Nihilists seem to find delight in making everything look silly, especially when it comes to values.

Paul: "So, I asked him to explain because as the sentence stands it is nonsense, unless you pour Rand's meaning into it,"

I see. So, you agree then that the statement "existence exists" as Rand intended it to mean, is not nonsense. That's good, Paul. You're making progress.

Paul: "in which case s/he (you, Aaron, etc) will be exposed for your prejudice"

I'm not sure what you mean here. Specifically, what "prejudice" do you have in mind here? Prejudice towards what?

Paul: "as well as seeing that your conception of 'existence exists' isn't axiomatic."

Can you explain this, Paul? If you know what Rand means by the statement "existence exists," do you also know what Rand means by "axiomatic"? How is the statement "existence exists" NOT axiomatic in Rand's system? (Or, are you not prepared to perform an internal critique here?)

Paul: "Randists always confuse the phrase with their understanding or interpretation of the phrase."

Do you have an argument for this? Do you have anything to substantiate it? (Or is it just your prejudice against Rand showing through?)

Paul: "Anyway, I can understand why someone wouldn't want that statement exposed to something like Wittgensteinian language analysis."

Why is that?

Paul: "Continue to try and bully, big D, it only hurts your reputation more and more."

I don't know why my reputation would concern you, Paul. Does it?

Paul: The more you write the more you expose your lack of knowledge."

Lack of knowledge of what? I'm perfectly willing to admit that I'm not omniscient, Paul. That's not a problem in my worldview. After all, my worldview doesn't teach me to pretend that I have "the mind of Christ," who is said to be omniscient.

Now, assuming you understand what Rand meant by the axiom "existence exists," can you explain what's wrong with it (if in fact you think there is something wrong with it)? Or, do you want to continue to parade your own lack of knowledge before us?

 
At 6/13/2005 1:38 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

well, I was going to answer but I figured "what's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander." I reflected on Aaron's answer to his assertions about Van Til and I thought I would give that as my answer since when I critiqued it both Aaron and Dawson defended it. Now, either they will defend me or they will prove to be prejudiced, atheistic sheep.

My answer: "Prove I don't understand Rand's saying."

 
At 6/13/2005 3:45 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "My answer: 'Prove I don't understand Rand's saying'."

Paul, to whom are you directing this challenge? You do understand that neither I nor Aaron have any onus to prove a negative, do you not? I asked you a direct question, namely whether or not you understand what Rand means by the statement "existence exists," and what Rand means by 'axiomatic'. It's up to you to demonstrate your understanding of Rand's position. If you don't take the opportunity that has been extended to you to demonstrate your familiarity with Rand's views, then I'm willing to accept your misinformed statements, both here and elsewhere, as sufficient indication that you as their author are uninformed on the matter, and thus make a poor candidate for critiquing the Objectivist worldview.

 
At 6/13/2005 5:49 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

So if I don't give the definition then I'm a hack for not reading and understanding Rand since to critique someone you should be familar with, and interact with, their primary works, yes? That is what you just said, correct?

 
At 6/13/2005 6:10 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul, it's time to shit or get off the pot. If you have criticism of Rand's philosophy, let's see it. Otherwise, I suggest you take a vow of silence on the matter until you have more intelligence.

 
At 6/13/2005 8:01 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

everyone probably realizes this already, but Paul is simply trying to point out that he believes Aaron didn't 'do his homework' when being critical, so people should come down on him for it.

Of course, Paul could just as easily actually back up his arguments rather than appealing to the 'lowest common denominator' of blogging..."I'll just answer like the other guys, even if I do continually complain about them."

Paul's tactics are noted...he cannot back up his beliefs, so he throws up smokescreens, complains about others, and runs away when threatened. Aaron and Dawson have both made Paul look silly numerous times. If Paul's arguments were so clear and persuasive, why don't they work? Oh, I know...the non-believers don't have the Holy Ghost whispering in their ear to help it make sense.

 
At 6/13/2005 11:35 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

I'm going to tell you what she meant as soon as you answer my question. Dawson, you've asked about 50 questions to my 10, don't you think you can answer this one question and then you'll get your wish.

 
At 6/13/2005 11:37 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

Hey is NR back with his nose up Dawson's creek again?

 
At 6/13/2005 11:41 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

LOL!

That was a good one Paul. :)

(Did the Magic Ghost whisper it to you?)

 
At 6/13/2005 11:41 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

existence exists means something exists, to make that claim implies consciousness because a conscious conscious of nothing (or only its own consciousness) is a contradiction in terms. And, to say something exists implies the axiom of identity. From this statement (existence exists) we have the three main axioms of objectivism

now can you answer my question Dawson. If he doesn't, NR, I'll be expecting a tounge-lashing directed towards Dawson since you're not a sheep and you'll hand out the same critiques regardless, right?

 
At 6/13/2005 11:46 PM, Blogger Not Reformed declaimed...

I'll leave the 'tongue lashing' to you Paul...sounds kinda icky.

But I am anxious to see you and Dawson actually interact, that would be something new.

Paul said:

"you'll hand out the same critiques regardless, right?"

Well, I'll probably have a hard time being critical of Dawson for not believing in an invisible ghost that whispers things to his "heart" or "soul," so I'm not sure how to give him the 'same critiques.'

But I'm sure if I do critique Dawson for something, he won't lash out and call me a zit-faced child or some such thing.

 
At 6/14/2005 8:00 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul before: “where does ‘existence’ exist? I've never seen it.”

Paul now: “existence exists means something exists”

Were you blind earlier, Paul? Had you really never seen something? Have you now seen the light?

Paul before (re: the statement ‘existence exists’): “it is linguistically confused”

Paul now: “existence exists means something exists”

So saying that something exists is “linguistically confused”?

Paul before: “someone trained in the analytic tradition can make [the statement ‘existence exists’] look quite silly.”

Paul now: “existence exists means something exists”

So if someone makes the statement that something exists “look quite silly,” what has been accomplished? The question is not whether or not “someone... can make it look quite silly,” but whether or not it a) is perceptually self-evident, b) is fundamental, c) is conceptually irreducible, d) must be the case even for one even to deny it, and therefore e) axiomatic. Rand held that the statement 'existence exists' satisfied all of these.

Paul earlier: “as the sentence stands it is nonsense”

Paul now: “existence exists means something exists”

So, a statement pointing out that something exists “is nonsense”?

Paul earlier: “unless you pour Rand's meaning into it, in which case s/he (you, Aaron, etc) will be exposed for your prejudice as well as seeing that your conception of ‘existence exists’ isn't axiomatic.”

What “prejudice”?
How is Rand’s axiom not axiomatic?

Paul earlier: “Randists always confuse the phrase with their understanding or interpretation of the phrase.”

Paul now: “existence exists means something exists”

Who’s confused here, Paul?

 
At 6/14/2005 6:30 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

You're confused Dawson. You obviously don't understand how I meant that. I see you didn't quote my relevent passage. Dawson, can you draw me a picture of existence qua existence? how 'bout mailing me some 'existence.' I see you don't really want to interact but you, true to form, love to quote people out of context in order to 'win.' I also said that I would answer your question if you answer mine. Will you? Quid pro quo? Or, are you afraid to have your beliefs challenged? I'm not since I have the truth, but I can understand that you are.

 
At 6/14/2005 8:42 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "You're confused Dawson. You obviously don't understand how I meant that."

How you meant what? What did you say that I misunderstood? Can you clarify what you meant?

Paul: "I see you didn't quote my relevent passage."

Which passage was that?

Paul: "Dawson, can you draw me a picture of existence qua existence?"

Sure. But there are illustrators who do a much better job than I would.

Paul: "how 'bout mailing me some 'existence'."

If I had your address, anything I send to you would be something that exists, i.e., existence.

Paul: "I see you don't really want to interact"

Paul, I challenged you to defend your statements, namely the following:

1) the statement 'existence exists' is "linguistically confused,"

2) the statement 'existence exists' is "nonsense,"

3) that the recognition that existence exists is not axiomatic,

4) that understanding and affirming the statement 'existence exists' is an expression of "prejudice," and

5) “Randists always confuse the phrase with their understanding or interpretation of the phrase.”

You've not substantiated any of these charges, and now seem to think I've somehow taken your statements out of context. Also, since making these charges, you came back and admitted "existence exists means something exists." So if in fact I'm confused as to what your position is, it's because you're not making your position at all clear. In fact, I think you're afraid to make your position clear.

So here's a question for you to answer clearly: Does existence exist? Yes or no? Just state your position and get it over with.

Paul: "but you, true to form, love to quote people out of context in order to 'win'."

What context did I leave out, Paul? Please, Paul, if I left something out, restore it so that I'll know what you're trying to say. Try to be clear. Present your position. There's no reason to hide.

Paul: "I also said that I would answer your question if you answer mine. Will you? Quid pro quo?"

Paul, you affirmatively stated that "rocks exist." I asked you to explain where you got the concept 'exist', since you used it in your affirmation. You have yet to answer this.

Now, which question did you want me to answer, Paul? I've answered many of your questions. If you want me to examine a particular question that you've asked before, you'll have to restate it.

Paul: "Or, are you afraid to have your beliefs challenged?"

I'm not at all afraid to have my position challenged, if that's what you're asking. I've been laying out my position, both here and on my blog, and I've yet to see you bring any serious challenge to it.

Paul: "I'm not since I have the truth, but I can understand that you are."

Paul, you're the one who brought up the factor of fear. And you seem to be saying you don't have any fear. And yet it is your worldview which holds that fear is fundamental to knowledge (cf. Prov. 1:7). So, according to your worldview, if you're not afraid, you can't claim any knowledge.

Meanwhile, I'm still waiting for you to present a criticism of Rand's axiom, if in fact you think it's somehow wrong or invalid. To do that with any credibility, you would first need to understand what she meant by it (and your critique would need to demonstrate that understanding). That's why I asked whether or not you understood what Rand meant by the expression 'existence exists'. Your questions today ("can you draw me a picture of existence qua existence? how 'bout mailing me some 'existence.'") suggest that you do not understand what Rand meant. Answering my question above ("Does existence exist? Yes or no?") will help settle the matter.

 
At 6/14/2005 9:46 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

you're a riot, Dawson.

"If I had your address, anything I send to you would be something that exists, i.e., existence."

So Rand means "exists exists?" ROTFL

Dawson, i don't care how you draw, I challenge you to draw me a picture of existence qua existence.

Oh, well it appears that you conflate exists and existence, they're not the same, big D. Actually, you conflate an existent and existence, generally.

Existence is a universal that can be applied to many particulars, Dawson.

What makes this sentence true, Dawson: That rock exists?

 
At 6/14/2005 10:12 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul, does existence exist, or not? Yes or no.

 
At 6/15/2005 12:16 AM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

depends what you mean by that and how it fits together in your worldview, that's why I referred to linguistics (which you din't get, rather you thought I was referring to something different) and Wittgensteinian language analysis. But I think it's obvious you don't want to have a serious convo with me, big D. You always do this. I understand it's frightening to have your Mecca challenged, but look at this as a learning experience. Anyway, have a nice life big D, you and your 500 hundred questions without answering any of mine.

 
At 6/15/2005 6:51 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

There you go, folks. The mighty Paul Manata doesn't know whether existence exists or not. With one question his whole worldview is brought to its knees.

Bloody hilarious!

 
At 6/15/2005 11:21 AM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

There we go folks, the mighty Dawson Bethrick is afraid to have a discussion about it.

Challenge: I challenge Dawson to draw a picture of existence qua existence and then take a picture of it and post it on his blog.

I will then refute big D and it will be bloody hallarious.

You see, "existence" is a universal. I can say it exists but Dawson cannot. I wanted to get into this, but Dawson crapped his pants.

 
At 6/15/2005 11:53 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "Dawson Bethrick is afraid to have a discussion about it."

"afraid to have a discussion about it"? I listed five assertions of yours that should be discussed. But you've completely evaded this. True to presuppositionalist form, you dodge and bluff all the way.

Paul: "Challenge: I challenge Dawson to draw a picture of existence qua existence and then take a picture of it and post it on his blog."

I don't have a digital camera for one, and two, I don't know how to upload pics onto my blog. But any picture of something that exists is a picture of existence, since existence is what exists. In Objectivism, we do not separate an entity that exists from its existence. We're not Thomists in this regard.

Paul: "I will then refute big D and it will be bloody hallarious."

How can you "refute" anything if you don't know whether existence exists or not? Without knowing this, you have no basis.

Paul: "You see, 'existence' is a universal."

See, Paul, this is why I asked you if you understood what Rand means by the statement "existence exists." You obviously don't. What's happening, Paul, is that you're importing a non-Objectivist notions into Rand's view, and then saying it's wrong or silly on that basis. But that's not an internal critique. It's just saying that it disagrees with some other position. We know that already.

What's interesting is how stubbornly you refuse to answer the basic question: Does existence exist? Yes or no?

Paul: "I can say it exists"

But earlier, you said it is "linguistically confused" to say that, and that it's "nonsense." Your words, Paul. Now you want to affirm it? Also, you've not explained either of your charges, even though you've been invited to.

Paul: "but Dawson cannot."

How can I not say "existence exists"? I just wrote it, and I just said it, too. What's key to note, however, is that the Christian worldview is premised on the primacy of consciousness, which is invalid. This is a hole that you'll never be able to dig Christianity out of, Paul, no matter how many insults you throw out at non-believers.

 
At 6/15/2005 5:18 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 6/15/2005 5:19 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

Dawson confuses existence with an INSTANCE of existence. Anyway, anyone with a smattering of philosophical education sees through big D's pontification to his stupidity. I used to think you were somewhat intelligent, now I know you're a fraud.

Dawson, the problem of universals is a hole you can't dig objectivism out of, now matter how many questions you ask and how much hot air you spew.

 
At 6/15/2005 5:41 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul, when you can do more than simply call others stupid, come back and interact. In the meanwhile, it's clear there's nothing to learn from you on this matter.

 
At 6/15/2005 7:35 PM, Blogger Paul Manata declaimed...

Big D writes: "Paul, when you can do more than simply call others stupid, come back and interact."


I did in my above post, what are you stupid?

 
At 6/15/2005 8:25 PM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Paul: "Dawson confuses existence with an INSTANCE of existence."

Let's explore this a bit. What is the difference, in your view, between existence and "an INSTANCE of existence"? Is the "INSTANCE of existence" an "instance" of something that exists, or of something that doesn't exist? You see, Paul, you've not presented an answer to my question; you've simply moved it back a step. Take for instance the chair I'm sitting on. It exists. Would you say that the chair is "an INSTANCE of existence"? If the chair is "an INSTANCE" of something, is it "an INSTANCE" of something that exists, or of something that doesn't exist? If you say that the chair is "an INSTANCE" of something that exists, then your earlier statement to the effect that it is "an INSTANCE of existence" would, by equation, constitute an affirmation that existence exists, which would be an agreement with Rand.

But if you hesitate here, so that you won't be interpreted as confirming the starting point of a non-believing worldview which you hate so venomously, and answer by saying that the chair is "an INSTANCE" of something that doesn't exist, then how is this different from saying that the chair doesn't exist? In which case, since the chair in fact exists, you'd simply be contradicting reality (perhaps because you hate Rand so much).

Consider your dilemma when you take your "INSTANCE" idea as a principle and apply it to your god-belief. You say your god exists, right? Well, is it just "an INSTANCE of existence"? Again you would face your same dilemma: is your god "an INSTANCE" of something that exists (in which case you'd be affirming Rand's view, which could only imply the falsity of your god-beliefs necessarily), or it is "an INSTANCE" of something that doesn't exist, in which case, you admit that there is no god. Either way, you concede to Rand's position. Game, set and match.

Meanwhile, in your mounting anger and contempt for the philosophy of reason, you want to call me "stupid" and "confused" simply because I am an adherent of the philosophy of reason. That's fine, Paul. You have your faith beliefs, and I have reason. So I consider the source: you're someone who wants to believe in invisible magic beings and holds to the cartoon universe premise, and thus fear those who don't believe likewise. It's because your position is so ridiculously untenable that you find it necessary to attack others simply for acknowledging that what exists, exists.

Paul: "Anyway, anyone with a smattering of philosophical education sees through big D's pontification to his stupidity."

When you get more than just "a smattering of philosophical education," perhaps you might be able to present some serious ideas to consider. But unless you shed your conceit and childish attitude, even more education probably won't help. Something to think about, Paul.

Paul: "I used to think you were somewhat intelligent, now I know you're a fraud."

I might be inclined to think something was wrong if in fact you thought I was intelligent, given your confessional investment to make me "look silly." After all, that's your primary intention, isn't it? Quite an aspiration, Paul.

Paul: "Dawson, the problem of universals is a hole you can't dig objectivism out of"

Ever try for some originality, Paul? At any rate, there are numerous Ph. D's who are in sharp disagreement with you on this, Paul. But that's probably because they're actually familiar with Objectivism.

But supposing I'm wrong and want to learn "the Truth" about universals. I've asked you before, so I'll ask you again: Where would I turn to in the bible to learn about universals?

I'm supposing you'll dodge this question again.

 
At 6/16/2005 5:40 AM, Blogger Francois Tremblay declaimed...

What a boorish fellow. I still persist in thinking that we need a new target. Paul is all chewed up.

 
At 6/16/2005 7:11 AM, Blogger Bahnsen Burner declaimed...

Well, you are right, Franc: Paul just gets "spanked" (his term) so badly every time he comes around here. But he must like it, for he continues to come back and gets his little weenie roasted something bad every time.

But he does offer us a few lesson opportunities. In the present case, we see that Paul is following in the tradition of philosophers of utter unimportance. In their love for useless terminology, they simply multiply concepts well beyond necessity, often for no better purpose than to keep control of an issue that's already out of their hands. The net effect for Paul is that he completely loses sight of essentials, thus completely destroying the knowledge hierarchy. He's willing to allow this to happen primarily because he's too proud now to concede that his religious views are intellectually bankrupt from their very roots, which is what he's desperately trying not to let be exposed. It just heaps loads of hot coals on his burning anger.

 

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