VonNoble

Best label for this assignment

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1 hour ago, Brother Kaman said:

I would think that you would first argue your own position. If you believe in a G/god, then argue for such a G/god. If you don't believe there is a G/god, then argue that. If you don't know then choose that position. Later, you will have heard the arguments against your position and will be better equipped to take on one of the other positions? Best to start with what you think you know. There will be many who will try to let you know that you are wrong.

I am SURE you are correct!   :thumbu:

Plenty of quick fire opinions in this class.

 

Yes...thanks.... I agree the 2nd round will be less intense to prepare.    I am assuming we  -get to pick - which of the remaining two we tackle second.    Either way -competent note taking in round one will make the construct in round two easier.

 

i am sort of looking at this in terms that the exercise is learning to craft a solid argument more than explains my personal beliefs.... 

 

Several of the students are in this class as pre-law requirement so if we focus on the construction (more than the faith) (or lack of it) we might master craftsmanship in some small way.   

 

Then again this is my first time thru it so maybe you are suppose to get more passionate & invested with the rightness of your belief.

 

i have not yet found a reason why God existing (or not)  mattered to me.  So I think all the fuss to prove it disprove is largely wasted energy (but it does make for a good and emotionally charged practice session)

 

After following this topic on other threads I guess atheist is as close an approximation as I can get in these three choices.  I agree we cannot know, so that allows for either of the “A” options .... I am going to try to do both and see if one is more comfortable than the other while drafting this.

 

von

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10 minutes ago, VonNoble said:

I am SURE you are correct!   :thumbu:

Plenty of quick fire opinions in this class.

 

Yes...thanks.... I agree the 2nd round will be less intense to prepare.    I am assuming we  -get to pick - which of the remaining two we tackle second.    Either way -competent note taking in round one will make the construct in round two easier.

 

i am sort of looking at this in terms that the exercise is learning to craft a solid argument more than explains my personal beliefs.... 

 

Several of the students are in this class as pre-law requirement so if we focus on the construction (more than the faith) (or lack of it) we might master craftsmanship in some small way.   

 

Then again this is my first time thru it so maybe you are suppose to get more passionate & invested with the rightness of your belief.

 

i have not yet found a reason why God existing (or not)  mattered to me.  So I think all the fuss to prove it disprove is largely wasted energy (but it does make for a good and emotionally charged practice session)

 

After following this topic on other threads I guess atheist is as close an approximation as I can get in these three choices.  I agree we cannot know, so that allows for either of the “A” options .... I am going to try to do both and see if one is more comfortable than the other while drafting this.

 

von

 

 

Based on this comment of yours, I think you would be more comfortable with the Agnostic label.  Nuances aside, I find there is a cultural divide between Agnostics and Atheists.  Go to You Tube and do a search on "Atheist".  Then do a search on "Agnostic".  In my opinion, the Agnostics are a much more mellow lot.  More thoughtful and less passionate.  Of course, there are exceptions.  

 

:mellow:

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3 hours ago, VonNoble said:

If you are willing to assist yet again.....

 

These two statements from our text have me flummoxed.  

 

1.  Believing is necessary for knowing something is true.

 

2.  Knowledge presupposes belief.

 

Aren’t these two “givens” sort of at odds ?

:help:

 

i am am going to reserve seats in the front row @ graduation for FORUM members if I opt to go for another degree...:D

von

 

1.  Nonsense.  If you know that something is true -- based on evidence -- you don't need belief.  Take that further.  Evidence can prove that belief is false.

 

Consider the experiments of Galileo.  He proved that Aristotle was mistaken about the rate at which object fall.  Aristotle believed that heavy objects fall faster than light objects.  Galileo proved that this belief was false.  

 

2.  Before Galileo, the Church believed that the Moon, as a Celestial object, was perfect.  Galileo looked at the Moon with his telescope and discovered craters.  That the Moon was not perfect.  Belief had to be overcome by knowledge.  

 

 

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5 hours ago, mererdog said:

Just so you know, the simplest defense of atheism (defined as active disbelief) and belief in God is-

"I have a still small voice inside me that tells me it is so. That voice has never steered me wrong, and I have seen no proof it is wrong about this. So, for now, I believe it."

 

Defined by whom?  The Atheists on You Tube -- Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins,  Dillahunty, etc. go in other directions.

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1 hour ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

Defined by whom?

It is defined that way as a part of the given defense. That does not suggest it is not defined in other ways by other people, or that it is the best way to define it, or even that it is a better way to define it. It simply means that is the way the term is used in the context of the given position. I refer you back to the post directly above the one you quoted, which says, in part- " With atheism, you have to differentiate between lack of belief that a proposition is true, and belief that a proposition is untrue. That distinction causes atheism to mean different things to different people, and will shape how you need to defend the position. "

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6 hours ago, VonNoble said:

If you are willing to assist yet again.....

 

These two statements from our text have me flummoxed.  

 

1.  Believing is necessary for knowing something is true.

 

2.  Knowledge presupposes belief.

 

Aren’t these two “givens” sort of at odds ?

They are two ways of expressing the same concept. It's Plato again- the JTB, or Justified True Belief. Where knowledge is defined that way, knowledge is a subset of belief. You can't know it is true without also believing it is true. So to say someone knows is to say they believe. Necessary and presupposed, because it is built into the definition.

Edited by mererdog

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3 hours ago, VonNoble said:

I am SURE you are correct!   :thumbu:

Plenty of quick fire opinions in this class.

 

Yes...thanks.... I agree the 2nd round will be less intense to prepare.    I am assuming we  -get to pick - which of the remaining two we tackle second.    Either way -competent note taking in round one will make the construct in round two easier.

 

i am sort of looking at this in terms that the exercise is learning to craft a solid argument more than explains my personal beliefs.... 

 

Several of the students are in this class as pre-law requirement so if we focus on the construction (more than the faith) (or lack of it) we might master craftsmanship in some small way.   

 

Then again this is my first time thru it so maybe you are suppose to get more passionate & invested with the rightness of your belief.

 

i have not yet found a reason why God existing (or not)  mattered to me.  So I think all the fuss to prove it disprove is largely wasted energy (but it does make for a good and emotionally charged practice session)

 

After following this topic on other threads I guess atheist is as close an approximation as I can get in these three choices.  I agree we cannot know, so that allows for either of the “A” options .... I am going to try to do both and see if one is more comfortable than the other while drafting this.

 

von

I get ya. Whatever your belief or disbelief or doubt is moot but it would be easier argued from a position you are familiar with.

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1 hour ago, mererdog said:

It is defined that way as a part of the given defense. That does not suggest it is not defined in other ways by other people, or that it is the best way to define it, or even that it is a better way to define it. It simply means that is the way the term is used in the context of the given position. I refer you back to the post directly above the one you quoted, which says, in part- " With atheism, you have to differentiate between lack of belief that a proposition is true, and belief that a proposition is untrue. That distinction causes atheism to mean different things to different people, and will shape how you need to defend the position. "

 

 

Generally, I avoid that kind of debate.  When I must, I defend Atheism by not letting the pious define it at all.  That means I'm not defending against a false definition.  I reject the definition.  For much the same reason, that Jews don't let Vatican dictionaries define them.  For the same reason that Pagans and other Polytheists don't accept Christian definitions.  The time has come for the Non-Monotheists -- all the different varieties -- to stop kissing up to the dominant culture.  

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20 minutes ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

When I must, I defend Atheism by not letting the pious define it at all.  

There are atheists who say those who do not actively disbelieve are not atheists. There are atheists who say those who actively disbelieve are not atheists. Since we have no Pope, there is no official definition, and no one to kick us out of the club for failing to meet the right requirements. We get to define it for ourselves, and we have to put up with others doing the same.

This isn't about "the pious." It is about effective rhetoric. Defending a belief requires showing only that the belief is justified, not that the thing believed is true. So, by using the definition of atheism I did, Von can build identical defenses for two of the labels, by ignoring the difference in what they believe.

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3 hours ago, mererdog said:

There are atheists who say those who do not actively disbelieve are not atheists. There are atheists who say those who actively disbelieve are not atheists. Since we have no Pope, there is no official definition, and no one to kick us out of the club for failing to meet the right requirements. We get to define it for ourselves, and we have to put up with others doing the same.

This isn't about "the pious." It is about effective rhetoric. Defending a belief requires showing only that the belief is justified, not that the thing believed is true. So, by using the definition of atheism I did, Von can build identical defenses for two of the labels, by ignoring the difference in what they believe.

 

The Atheists that I've met are not trying to kick anybody out of the club.  They want Atheism to be the umbrella word.  

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21 hours ago, VonNoble said:

For my intro to Philosophy class each student must write an agrument supporting one of the following three choices:

1.  Belief in existence of God

2.  Being Agnostic

3.  Being atheist

Those are the only choices.  You have to select one of those options.

Our supporting “evidence” will in some fashion or other be dissected in class

Which would you pick for the first round draft?  :blink:

Which is the easiest? 

 

I'd definitely choose "Agnostic", its the only one that can be honestly defended. "I don't know" is the only honest answer that a person can logically come to. A believer chooses to believe,  a nonbeliever chooses not to believe, but neither "know" anything.  Anyone who claims to know for certain is a liar, because it just isn't possible. Atheism has no provable facts to substantiate what they don't believe,  and Believers have no tangible facts to prove what they do believe. Suffice to say; "I don't know" (Agnosticism) needs no supporting evidence. A person can be very convinced of what they believe is true or not true, but at the start of the day, we are all born knowing nothing, and by days end, everything else is conjecture.  jmo

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7 hours ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

The Atheists that I've met are not trying to kick anybody out of the club.  They want Atheism to be the umbrella word.  

Do you think it likely that a group with only the one issue in common is likely to all agree on any other issue? That people who agree about God will all agree on terminology about God? Personally, I have never seen the dark side of the Moon, but I'm pretty sure its real.

I have heard atheists argue that "a soft atheist is not a real atheist." I have heard atheists argue that "people who argue against the existence of God are anti-theists, not atheists."

Some people hate umbrella terms. They relish any opportunity to prove that they are different, and therefore better, than others. You have not found that to be true?

Edited by mererdog

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22 minutes ago, mererdog said:

Do you think it likely that a group with only the one issue in common is likely to all agree on any other issue? That people who agree about God will all agree on terminology about God? Personally, I have never seen the dark side of the Moon, but I'm pretty sure its real.

I have heard atheists argue that "a soft atheist is not a real atheist." I have heard atheists argue that "people who argue against the existence of God are anti-theists, not atheists."

Some people hate umbrella terms. They relish any opportunity to prove that they are different, and therefore better, than others. You have not found that to be true?

 

No.  I don't expect agreement.  I do expect a bell curve.  This seems to be the case.  It's not scientific.  I don't have numbers.  Over the years, I have built up an impression of where the high point in the curve is.  Of course, I could be mistaken.  

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22 hours ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

 

 

I understand that.  Von has to make two presentations of a possible  three positions.  Perhaps you could help him prepare for the belief position?  

 

If that is the second position he chooses to take I would be willing to offer up a few of the things that I find persuasive.

He may well choose to go with Agnostic and Atheist as the two positions to present.

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1 hour ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

I do expect a bell curve.

What I was trying to do was be specific. Talking about a subset within the set and using language clear enough to make that obvious. Whether that subset is a majority or a minority should be irrelevant. Even if most cops are clean, there is still value in talking about dirty cops, no?

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20 hours ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:

 

 

Based on this comment of yours, I think you would be more comfortable with the Agnostic label.  Nuances aside, I find there is a cultural divide between Agnostics and Atheists.  Go to You Tube and do a search on "Atheist".  Then do a search on "Agnostic".  In my opinion, the Agnostics are a much more mellow lot.  More thoughtful and less passionate.  Of course, there are exceptions.  

 

:mellow:

Good suggestion - I made a date with myself to check out those things this weekend.....allow myself to digest whatever I see there ....then look at the tools provided (thanks to all for helping me have some tools) ....and see what seems to fit best. 

 

Since I have never really tried to stick myself with a label (I have actively avoided doing so) .....I am guessing  your reasoning (supported by the comments of others) definitely have me seeing Agnostic in a new light.  Which is a good thing.  Learning is a good thing. 

 

von 

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17 hours ago, mererdog said:

They are two ways of expressing the same concept. It's Plato again- the JTB, or Justified True Belief. Where knowledge is defined that way, knowledge is a subset of belief. You can't know it is true without also believing it is true. So to say someone knows is to say they believe. Necessary and presupposed, because it is built into the definition.

I wish you had written our text book.  You zeroed in on the very point I guess it was trying to make - I all I saw were two statements in conflict.....you did a nice job of knitting together relevance.  Thank you.   I am actually doing better in the Epistemology section - that is not to say I am breezing through it -  - -- but other than this strangely worded section - I think I got the rest of the chapter at least without breaking into a cold sweat when I open the book.   

 

thx again, 

 

von

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12 hours ago, Dan56 said:

 

I'd definitely choose "Agnostic", its the only one that can be honestly defended. "I don't know" is the only honest answer that a person can logically come to. A believer chooses to believe,  a nonbeliever chooses not to believe, but neither "know" anything.  Anyone who claims to know for certain is a liar, because it just isn't possible. Atheism has no provable facts to substantiate what they don't believe,  and Believers have no tangible facts to prove what they do believe. Suffice to say; "I don't know" (Agnosticism) needs no supporting evidence. A person can be very convinced of what they believe is true or not true, but at the start of the day, we are all born knowing nothing, and by days end, everything else is conjecture.  jmo

Dan56 - THANKS for the neutral and objective input.    Very much appreciated.  I am sort of leaning that way too.   Your point of view is sort of where I am landing on this assignment too.  I didn't initially, but it is becoming more clear to me that personal beliefs are gonna play second fiddle to get through the assignment as conflict free in class as possible.   It is an exercise in thinking (lol) - not belief.        Strange though that may be.  They are NOT exclusive...but the grade is definitely going to be assigned on what I present being valid (as in fits the box for FORMAT)....it is not so much about content... if that makes any sense.  Or at least I think that is how it is going to shake out.    

 

I can see why this subject is challenging.  I suspect what we think we know arriving to this class is sort of put into a blender and you have to build a ladder via a new way of seeing the top... to get out of it alive (I am sort of kidding)  ......

 

 This thing creates a new point of view - not better or worse - just different than the skill set I learned at home.... the input on this  thread is helping.  It feels safe to express doubt/uncertainty here - For which I am very grateful. 

 

von

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2 hours ago, Pastor Dave said:

If that is the second position he chooses to take I would be willing to offer up a few of the things that I find persuasive.

He may well choose to go with Agnostic and Atheist as the two positions to present.

Thank you for being willing to assist.  I guess if they give me a choice - I am going to pick the two "A" choices because they seem the most familiar to me.     If they do not - I will DEFINITELY need a crash course to make sure I present the "belief in God" position solidly.   Not that I would not be able to come up with at least a starting point .....but the construction tools I might have already could surely use bolstering.   Thanks for being willing to pitch in. 

 

von

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My genuine thanks to ALL for this assistance. 

It is odd to be looking at spiritual things through the lens of a courtroom-type objective argument. 

 

We are trying to defend-define-present a (widely agreed) unknown.    However, I suspect the lesson is in the process

more than the conclusion (but what do I know.)   

 

I am planning on working on this over the weekend.  Assuming I have a decent first draft by Monday  - I will have a week to tweak it before we go "live" in the classroom.   Much to my surprise it seems LOTS of my classmates are working ahead on this one too. Unlike most assignments - there are more "already on this one now" ...than normal.   Apparently I am not the only one to find the idea of a spiritual belief in a clinical setting to be a bit of a challenge. 

 

von

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