Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby Byblos » Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:51 am

trulyenlightened wrote:
Byblos wrote:The underlined is exactly what I was attempting to do when I initially suggested to you to discuss the PSR. By its nature It is a metaphysical type of discussion but again, you dismissed it out of hand as, how did you put it?, mumbo-jumbo. Truth is, at the very foundation of philosophy in general and metaphysics in particular, is logic and reason. Dismissing it will completely undermine science. It will be akin to denying the very tree while cutting the branch you are sitting on.

So if you will indulge me one more time, the mistake you keep making with Aquinas is a mistake practically everyone else makes, including some of the well known philosophers of our time, and yes, many are Christian. The likes of Alvin Plantinga and William Lane Craig, to name just 2.

I stated this in many other posts but I will repeat it again, just for clarity. Aquinas' first argument from motion has absolutely nothing to do with time going back to infinity, the big bang, the age of the universe or how it came about. So much so that Aquinas made it an emphatic point to stipulate that it CANNOT be shown through reason alone that the universe had a beginning or time does not stretch back to infinity. So unless you want to claim Aquinas didn't even know his own argument, I would suggest the confusion is on your part, not his.

On the personal side, I have no issue whatsoever with the theory of evolution, be it biological or cosmological. It's another reason why I had no contribution to all your posts, there's just not much I disagree with, save for the silly notion that enough time will just make magic happen (talk about god of the gaps :shakehead: ).

So that's where we are. You want to continue with this fruitless pursuit of posting scientific theories and data well known to us all, please go right ahead, no skin off my back. But if you're ready to have a serious discussion on metaphysics, if for no other reason than to understand better our point of view, let me know.



Thank you for your invitation. I do agree that logic and reason had to come from somewhere. But why philosophy and the metaphysical? Couldn't logic and reason be only the evolved results of our physical experiences in our early struggle for survival?


You have it backwards. Logic and reason did not come from philosophy and metaphysics, it is the other way around. First the principles of non-contradiction, causality, and sufficient reason. From there we deduce attributes about our reality.

trulyenlightened wrote:I'm sure that the natives surviving in the jungles of old Borneo, are not pondering over existential reality, or the true meaning of life, purpose and essence. In fact it is only when the mind not distracted, or totally engaged, that we can self-reflect at all.


Is there a point to this?

trulyenlightened wrote:Although I am certainly willing to engage in any topic that require no evidence, no proofs, no right or wrong, and no practical applications, I feel that my expertise in this area is only limited to common sense and intuition.


And there you go again, making clearly false assumptions in topics you have repeatedly demonstrated total lack of knowledge in. Metaphysics is not in the business of offering evidence, that's the domain of science. Metaphysics has a much higher burden of proof since it is in the very business of offering proofs, not merely evidence. So you are simply factually wrong here as metaphysics is most certainly based on common sense (logic and reason come first), and does offer proofs and practical applications.

trulyenlightened wrote: Although I am confused that you claim to agree with most of my perspective, and then claim the metaphysical as a serious discussion?


I do. I also believe your incredulity seems to be stemming from never having given the subject matter any serious thought and simply dismissing it as some 13th century monk's mumbo-jumbo. I don't blame you, most modern day scientists as well as new-age philosophers think the same way so you're in the majority here. Except you're all wrong.

trulyenlightened wrote:Also, I'm confused over your not understanding the significance of how time allows for small changes to become more pronounced changes. Or why time is necessary to allow for trial and error, genetic variation, speciation, etc. Given enough time almost anything is possible. Although time is relative, it is still a dimensional property of our Universe, not a gap-filler.


Do you really think we haven't thought this through? :shakehead:

Do you understand the difference between an accidentally order causal series that does not preclude an infinite regress as a possibility, and an essentially ordered causal series that necessitates a first cause, thereby precluding an infinite regress as a possibility? For goodness' sake man, either engage in the topic or quit building straw men, the field is full of them.

trulyenlightened wrote: The mistake that you make is that Aquinas did not have the scientific tools that we have today. He could not use the CMB radiation, or the hubble telescope to verify that the Universe had a beginning and is expanding. He did not have quantum physics to verify a quantum gravity and a quantum vacuum, to hypothesize how the Universe may have started. His premises are based entirely on inductive reasoning. We are seriously talking about apples and oranges. Maybe you can give me a preview, or an example of how any metaphysical argument on any topic would end? Don


You keep perpetuating your error, looking at our universe. What I am telling you is that Aquinas' arguments apply not only to our universe, but across all reality and to all times and any universe with any laws of physics, including a multi-verse with infinite universes and across any quantum fields your heart desires.

And metaphysical arguments can end like any other logical argument. They are presented as a set of premises with a necessary conclusion that follows from the premises. You want to end the argument all you have to do is show that one or more of the premises is not true or that the conclusion does not follow from the premises. It really is that simple, logical.
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby Kurieuo » Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:07 am

On the back of Byblos' comments re: many misunderstanding Aquinas... if you are truly open, honest and so on TrulyEnlightened, then I encourage you to watch the following discussion between Feser and Shapiro.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UaSSSst3JBo
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby Philip » Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:57 am

K, I really enjoyed that. There is a lot to digest in it - and so it would be great to sum up the professor's key ideas in simple-sentence paragraphs.

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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby trulyenlightened » Tue Nov 21, 2017 11:26 am

Byblos wrote:
trulyenlightened wrote:
Byblos wrote:The underlined is exactly what I was attempting to do when I initially suggested to you to discuss the PSR. By its nature It is a metaphysical type of discussion but again, you dismissed it out of hand as, how did you put it?, mumbo-jumbo. Truth is, at the very foundation of philosophy in general and metaphysics in particular, is logic and reason. Dismissing it will completely undermine science. It will be akin to denying the very tree while cutting the branch you are sitting on.

So if you will indulge me one more time, the mistake you keep making with Aquinas is a mistake practically everyone else makes, including some of the well known philosophers of our time, and yes, many are Christian. The likes of Alvin Plantinga and William Lane Craig, to name just 2.

I stated this in many other posts but I will repeat it again, just for clarity. Aquinas' first argument from motion has absolutely nothing to do with time going back to infinity, the big bang, the age of the universe or how it came about. So much so that Aquinas made it an emphatic point to stipulate that it CANNOT be shown through reason alone that the universe had a beginning or time does not stretch back to infinity. So unless you want to claim Aquinas didn't even know his own argument, I would suggest the confusion is on your part, not his.

On the personal side, I have no issue whatsoever with the theory of evolution, be it biological or cosmological. It's another reason why I had no contribution to all your posts, there's just not much I disagree with, save for the silly notion that enough time will just make magic happen (talk about god of the gaps :shakehead: ).

So that's where we are. You want to continue with this fruitless pursuit of posting scientific theories and data well known to us all, please go right ahead, no skin off my back. But if you're ready to have a serious discussion on metaphysics, if for no other reason than to understand better our point of view, let me know.



Thank you for your invitation. I do agree that logic and reason had to come from somewhere. But why philosophy and the metaphysical? Couldn't logic and reason be only the evolved results of our physical experiences in our early struggle for survival?


You have it backwards. Logic and reason did not come from philosophy and metaphysics, it is the other way around. First the principles of non-contradiction, causality, and sufficient reason. From there we deduce attributes about our reality.

trulyenlightened wrote:I'm sure that the natives surviving in the jungles of old Borneo, are not pondering over existential reality, or the true meaning of life, purpose and essence. In fact it is only when the mind not distracted, or totally engaged, that we can self-reflect at all.


Is there a point to this?

trulyenlightened wrote:Although I am certainly willing to engage in any topic that require no evidence, no proofs, no right or wrong, and no practical applications, I feel that my expertise in this area is only limited to common sense and intuition.


And there you go again, making clearly false assumptions in topics you have repeatedly demonstrated total lack of knowledge in. Metaphysics is not in the business of offering evidence, that's the domain of science. Metaphysics has a much higher burden of proof since it is in the very business of offering proofs, not merely evidence. So you are simply factually wrong here as metaphysics is most certainly based on common sense (logic and reason come first), and does offer proofs and practical applications.

trulyenlightened wrote: Although I am confused that you claim to agree with most of my perspective, and then claim the metaphysical as a serious discussion?


I do. I also believe your incredulity seems to be stemming from never having given the subject matter any serious thought and simply dismissing it as some 13th century monk's mumbo-jumbo. I don't blame you, most modern day scientists as well as new-age philosophers think the same way so you're in the majority here. Except you're all wrong.

trulyenlightened wrote:Also, I'm confused over your not understanding the significance of how time allows for small changes to become more pronounced changes. Or why time is necessary to allow for trial and error, genetic variation, speciation, etc. Given enough time almost anything is possible. Although time is relative, it is still a dimensional property of our Universe, not a gap-filler.


Do you really think we haven't thought this through? :shakehead:

Do you understand the difference between an accidentally order causal series that does not preclude an infinite regress as a possibility, and an essentially ordered causal series that necessitates a first cause, thereby precluding an infinite regress as a possibility? For goodness' sake man, either engage in the topic or quit building straw men, the field is full of them.

trulyenlightened wrote: The mistake that you make is that Aquinas did not have the scientific tools that we have today. He could not use the CMB radiation, or the hubble telescope to verify that the Universe had a beginning and is expanding. He did not have quantum physics to verify a quantum gravity and a quantum vacuum, to hypothesize how the Universe may have started. His premises are based entirely on inductive reasoning. We are seriously talking about apples and oranges. Maybe you can give me a preview, or an example of how any metaphysical argument on any topic would end? Don


You keep perpetuating your error, looking at our universe. What I am telling you is that Aquinas' arguments apply not only to our universe, but across all reality and to all times and any universe with any laws of physics, including a multi-verse with infinite universes and across any quantum fields your heart desires.

And metaphysical arguments can end like any other logical argument. They are presented as a set of premises with a necessary conclusion that follows from the premises. You want to end the argument all you have to do is show that one or more of the premises is not true or that the conclusion does not follow from the premises. It really is that simple, logical.


It is becoming tedious to keep highlighting all the straw man and misrepresentation that I have to respond to. If you are going to accuse me of something, at least make sure it is accurate. For example, Byblos quoted "Truth is, at the very foundation of philosophy in general and metaphysics in particular, is logic and reason. Dismissing it will completely undermine science". I responded to his comment by asking two question, "I do agree that logic and reason had to come from somewhere. But why philosophy and the metaphysical(1st question)? Couldn't logic and reason be only the evolved results of our physical experiences in our early struggle for survival(2nd question)"? So show me where I made a truth claim that logic and reason DID come from philosophy and the metaphysical? You can't can you? So why would you state, "You have it backwards. Logic and reason did not come from philosophy and metaphysics, it is the other way around"? Other than existence, I have no idea what are the attributes of reality. Let's move on.

The Borneo analogy was to illustrate difference in mind sets, and the survival priorities between urban and primitive mind sets. But never mind, it is obvious where that will lead. Since you have stated that,"Metaphysics is not in the business of offering evidence, that's the domain of science", then how are my assumptions wrong? Does the Metaphysical offer scientific facts, data, evidence, proofs, or have any practical application? Is there a Metaphysical Theory? I have already stated that I can only bring common sense and intuition to the table, but these can be fooled and not always dependable. Maybe you can site a practical application of any metaphysical argument? Otherwise, it's just pseudo-sophistry and semantics. I assume that you know that you have the burden of proof, since you are in the minority and are claiming that the majority is wrong. So let's hear any proofs on any topic.

All I said was that time is necessary for change to have occurred. I'm afraid your causal analyses is far too obfuscating and ambiguous for me. But I'm sure you know what you mean. The problem that you seem to have, is that you assert and accuse me of everything, but never provide the evidence to back it up. I demonstrated that Aquinas's premises were clearly false. But instead of showing me how I was wrong, you simply asserted it. It is irrelevant if his arguments extend into all realities, it is still wrong. Don

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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby Byblos » Tue Nov 21, 2017 12:11 pm

trulyenlightened wrote: It is becoming tedious to keep highlighting all the straw man and misrepresentation that I have to respond to. If you are going to accuse me of something, at least make sure it is accurate. For example, Byblos quoted "Truth is, at the very foundation of philosophy in general and metaphysics in particular, is logic and reason. Dismissing it will completely undermine science". I responded to his comment by asking two question, "I do agree that logic and reason had to come from somewhere. But why philosophy and the metaphysical(1st question)? Couldn't logic and reason be only the evolved results of our physical experiences in our early struggle for survival(2nd question)"? So show me where I made a truth claim that logic and reason DID come from philosophy and the metaphysical? You can't can you? So why would you state, "You have it backwards. Logic and reason did not come from philosophy and metaphysics, it is the other way around"? Other than existence, I have no idea what are the attributes of reality. Let's move on.

The Borneo analogy was to illustrate difference in mind sets, and the survival priorities between urban and primitive mind sets. But never mind, it is obvious where that will lead. Since you have stated that,"Metaphysics is not in the business of offering evidence, that's the domain of science", then how are my assumptions wrong? Does the Metaphysical offer scientific facts, data, evidence, proofs, or have any practical application? Is there a Metaphysical Theory? I have already stated that I can only bring common sense and intuition to the table, but these can be fooled and not always dependable. Maybe you can site a practical application of any metaphysical argument? Otherwise, it's just pseudo-sophistry and semantics. I assume that you know that you have the burden of proof, since you are in the minority and are claiming that the majority is wrong. So let's hear any proofs on any topic.

All I said was that time is necessary for change to have occurred. I'm afraid your causal analyses is far too obfuscating and ambiguous for me. But I'm sure you know what you mean. The problem that you seem to have, is that you assert and accuse me of everything, but never provide the evidence to back it up. I demonstrated that Aquinas's premises were clearly false. But instead of showing me how I was wrong, you simply asserted it. It is irrelevant if his arguments extend into all realities, it is still wrong. Don


What is becoming crystal clear (and yes, very tedious) is the fact that you have no interest in an honest discussion. I had come to that conclusion from our previous exchanges but I figured I'd give you the benefit of the doubt. I was wrong.

Carry on.
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby abelcainsbrother » Tue Nov 21, 2017 1:19 pm

RickD wrote:
trulyenlightened wrote:
abelcainsbrother wrote:What Aquinas came up with is genius for making a philosophical point and yet so simple to understand and in the 13th century too. I doubt he knew then that science would one day hundreds of years into the future confirm him correct,yet science has.It is simple but packs a powerful philosophical punch on logic and reason in our world.

1.All things have a cause.
2.All things THAT HAVE a cause are caused by something else.(notice that this only applies to things that have a cause)
3.All things are willed into existence.
4.There can be no infinite regression.

So simple yet so brilliant.


Your first premise state that, "All things have a cause". You then state the same thing differently, "All things that have a cause, are caused". This is an unnecessary premise, since you have already stated that, "All things 'DO' have a cause". Then you inversely restate the same premise, by stating that all causes are applied only to things that have a cause. But this now becomes a contradiction since, "All things 'DO' have a cause". Then out of nowhere you claim, "That all things are willed into existence". This creates many problems. How do you know this? What evidence supports this premise? The other premises can be supported, but not this one. In other words, what causes, "All things 'to be' willed into existence"? Finally, another unrelated and unsupported premise. "There can be no infinite regression". This is another contradiction. If all things are caused, and there is no infinite regression of causality, then at least ONE thing is not caused. Therefore, "All things are 'not' caused". This argument self-implodes because it uses its two conclusions as part of its premise.

I suppose for those living over 750 years ago, this kind of logic may appear simple and yet brilliant. But for the more evolved critical thinkers of today, it is not. Don

ACB,

You just misrepresented Aquinas.


It is still true and it is based on Aquinas's 5 ways.I have just norrowed it down and simplified it focusing on the things that pack more of a punch.Don't worry he cannot refute it and be intellectually honest.I know he tried to but he has'nt. But what is weird is how all of his scientific knowledge completely goes out the window and he cannot see how the science he knows so well confirms these things true,plus the reality around us. There are probably ways to make alot better argument for Aquinas than I can,but what I wrote is still based on Aquinas's 5 ways.It is not my specialty,but I know enough about it to get by.
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby RickD » Tue Nov 21, 2017 1:39 pm

abelcainsbrother wrote:
RickD wrote:
trulyenlightened wrote:
abelcainsbrother wrote:What Aquinas came up with is genius for making a philosophical point and yet so simple to understand and in the 13th century too. I doubt he knew then that science would one day hundreds of years into the future confirm him correct,yet science has.It is simple but packs a powerful philosophical punch on logic and reason in our world.

1.All things have a cause.
2.All things THAT HAVE a cause are caused by something else.(notice that this only applies to things that have a cause)
3.All things are willed into existence.
4.There can be no infinite regression.

So simple yet so brilliant.


Your first premise state that, "All things have a cause". You then state the same thing differently, "All things that have a cause, are caused". This is an unnecessary premise, since you have already stated that, "All things 'DO' have a cause". Then you inversely restate the same premise, by stating that all causes are applied only to things that have a cause. But this now becomes a contradiction since, "All things 'DO' have a cause". Then out of nowhere you claim, "That all things are willed into existence". This creates many problems. How do you know this? What evidence supports this premise? The other premises can be supported, but not this one. In other words, what causes, "All things 'to be' willed into existence"? Finally, another unrelated and unsupported premise. "There can be no infinite regression". This is another contradiction. If all things are caused, and there is no infinite regression of causality, then at least ONE thing is not caused. Therefore, "All things are 'not' caused". This argument self-implodes because it uses its two conclusions as part of its premise.

I suppose for those living over 750 years ago, this kind of logic may appear simple and yet brilliant. But for the more evolved critical thinkers of today, it is not. Don

ACB,

You just misrepresented Aquinas.


It is still true and it is based on Aquinas's 5 ways.I have just norrowed it down and simplified it focusing on the things that pack more of a punch.Don't worry he cannot refute it and be intellectually honest.I know he tried to but he has'nt. But what is weird is how all of his scientific knowledge completely goes out the window and he cannot see how the science he knows so well confirms these things true,plus the reality around us. There are probably ways to make alot better argument for Aquinas than I can,but what I wrote is still based on Aquinas's 5 ways.It is not my specialty,but I know enough about it to get by.

ACB,

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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby abelcainsbrother » Tue Nov 21, 2017 1:43 pm

trulyenlightened wrote:
abelcainsbrother wrote:What Aquinas came up with is genius for making a philosophical point and yet so simple to understand and in the 13th century too. I doubt he knew then that science would one day hundreds of years into the future confirm him correct,yet science has.It is simple but packs a powerful philosophical punch on logic and reason in our world.

1.All things have a cause.
2.All things THAT HAVE a cause are caused by something else.(notice that this only applies to things that have a cause)
3.All things are willed into existence.
4.There can be no infinite regression.

So simple yet so brilliant.


Your first premise state that, "All things have a cause". You then state the same thing differently, "All things that have a cause, are caused". This is an unnecessary premise, since you have already stated that, "All things 'DO' have a cause". Then you inversely restate the same premise, by stating that all causes are applied only to things that have a cause. But this now becomes a contradiction since, "All things 'DO' have a cause". Then out of nowhere you claim, "That all things are willed into existence". This creates many problems. How do you know this? What evidence supports this premise? The other premises can be supported, but not this one. In other words, what causes, "All things 'to be' willed into existence"? Finally, another unrelated and unsupported premise. "There can be no infinite regression". This is another contradiction. If all things are caused, and there is no infinite regression of causality, then at least ONE thing is not caused. Therefore, "All things are 'not' caused". This argument self-implodes because it uses its two conclusions as part of its premise.

I suppose for those living over 750 years ago, this kind of logic may appear simple and yet brilliant. But for the more evolved critical thinkers of today, it is not. Don



Yes name anything in our world that does not have a cause if you disagree with it.Look around you right now at everything around you and keep going and even try to use your scientific knowledge too because you should be able to go all the way back to the singularity if you really think about it.

It might seem like a contradiction to you that not all things have a cause but God does not have a cause because he is eternal,besides these principles are based on things in our world,not outside our world.

We have reality all around us. Again yes all things are willed into existence again look all around you at everything around you that is there because it was willed into existence and keep going.Because all things are willed into existence including the singularity.You cannot be in reality and think any other way.

And yes there can be no infinite regression based on these principles that make up everything around us and in our world because all things have a cause in our world so this prevents infinite regression from being able to be done.You cannot go back back far enough and even billions of years is nothing compared to eternity,but time will not change the fact that all things have a cause.

Therefore based on everything around us,reality,science and based on logic and reason there must be an uncaused first cause to get everything going over billions of years going back to the singularity and this would be our eternal God that did it.
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby Nils » Tue Nov 21, 2017 1:49 pm

Byblos wrote:Topic 0: I don't mean to be dismissive but I really have no clue where you're going with topics 1 thru whatever, except extreme skepticism, that is. So unless you want to admit extreme skepticism right now and save us all a boat load of time and effort, I suggest we follow a different track, one in which our senses and power of reason are reliable enough to discover the world around us.

As I mentioned in the other thread, if you think I will be arguing infinite regress, therefore uncaused cause, you could not possibly be more wrong. I just wanted to get that straight right off the bat, in case you're formulating your posts on that basis.

So from what perspective am I coming from with this PSR thing. First, the definition of the Principle of Sufficient Reason is pretty basic: Everything must have an explanation. You can't get more basic than that, really so if you disagree with that we might as well just quit the conversation now. If you do agree, let's move on.

If everything must have an explanation, there are two possibilities:
1. Either the explanation is extrinsic (outside of the thing it explains), or
2. The explanation is intrinsic (self-explanatory)

So we've gone beyond the definition to list all the possibilities and, again, I don't think there's a third option here.

Now what can we say about the explanations themselves?
There are two types of explanations:
1. Either the explanation requires an explanation extrinsic to itself, in which case it is contingent on that extrinsic explanation, or
2. The explanation is fundamentally self-explanatory and, therefore absolutely necessary (not contingent on any other explanation)

And once again those are the only two possibilities.

I'm going to stop here for now and let you comment or ask questions for clarification. We'll see how things develop from there.


Byblos,
Long ago I posted the questions below but you probably missed in the rapid flow of post. But here it is again.

- What do you mean by "self-explanatory"? Please give some examples.
- What do you mean by saying that a self-explanatory explanation is "absolute necessary"?

Nils

PS As RickD assumed I got a bit confused so I started a new thread on Aquinas in God and Science.

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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby Byblos » Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:27 pm

Nils wrote:
Byblos wrote:If everything must have an explanation, there are two possibilities:
1. Either the explanation is extrinsic (outside of the thing it explains), or
2. The explanation is intrinsic (self-explanatory)

So we've gone beyond the definition to list all the possibilities and, again, I don't think there's a third option here.

Now what can we say about the explanations themselves?
There are two types of explanations:
1. Either the explanation requires an explanation extrinsic to itself, in which case it is contingent on that extrinsic explanation, or
2. The explanation is fundamentally self-explanatory and, therefore absolutely necessary (not contingent on any other explanation)

And once again those are the only two possibilities.

I'm going to stop here for now and let you comment or ask questions for clarification. We'll see how things develop from there.


Byblos,
Long ago I posted the questions below but you probably missed in the rapid flow of post. But here it is again.


My apologies, I did miss it.

Nils wrote:- What do you mean by "self-explanatory"? Please give some examples.
- What do you mean by saying that a self-explanatory explanation is "absolute necessary"?


As it turns out, from logic and reason alone, we can say a great deal about a thing being self-explanatory. But before we can give example(s), we must first agree on the definitions and agree on whether or not there any other possibilities.

So first, do you agree that, according to the PSR, everything must have a reason? If yes, then do you agree that there are only 2 possibilities, i.e.

1. Either the explanation is extrinsic (outside of the thing it explains), or
2. The explanation is intrinsic (self-explanatory)

And if you so far agree, then do you further agree that

There are only two types of explanations:
1. Either the explanation requires an explanation extrinsic to itself, in which case it is contingent on that extrinsic explanation, or
2. The explanation is fundamentally self-explanatory and, therefore absolutely necessary (not contingent on any other explanation)

If you agree, we can go further. If not, tell me why and what other options there are.

Nils wrote:PS As RickD assumed I got a bit confused so I started a new thread on Aquinas in God and Science.


I will respond in the other thread regarding Aquinas' 2nd way but since this one is already referencing the PSR, let's see how that develops.
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby Kurieuo » Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:20 pm

Philip wrote:K, I really enjoyed that. There is a lot to digest in it - and so it would be great to sum up the professor's key ideas in simple-sentence paragraphs.

Some key points in the video:

  • Feser was an Atheist philosophy of religion lecturer.
  • Feser thought he knew all about Aquinas' arguments for God.
  • To make Aquinas more interesting to his students and other traditional arguments, rather than using passed on materials where he'd easily shoot down the arguments, he looked into Aquinas more closely to make it a more interesting debate. See how far he could take the traditional arguments for God.
  • As time went on, he realised a lot of the objections routinely raised against Aquinas and his arguments are based upon caricatures -- based upon strawman and things that are misunderstood or never said.
  • Feser got more deeply into it, and thought the arguments aren't actually that bad, to that they're interesting, to that they're quite powerful until eventually he became convinced by their arguments.
Many philosophers who comment on Aquinas have perhaps taken a few classes in philosophy of religion. Perhaps an intro class or the like, but their interest is actually elsewhere. Stock arguments and pushbacks are presented perhaps on a sheet or two of paper as it is quickly covered. I've seen such done with Craig's arguments as well. Unless you really know more deeply, perhaps do an essay on it, than such are often given rather superficial treatment by the lecturer who is just trying to give a broad spectrum. Unless a student actually reads Aquinas' arguments closely themselves, gives serious treatment to a critical research assignment on it, then they're just going to scrape the surface which is full of distraction and strawmen.

There are many (philosophers) who may comment on Aquinas, and this is what Byblos is getting at -- and then Jac before him would always express -- but they've not really looked deeply into his arguments and read them for themselves but have often just absorbed the caricatures presented to them in their classes. People absorb education material, and then love to think they are now "educated" and in the know. Fact of the matter is, as time has gone on, I've had to revise how I understood Aquinas myself based upon Jac's analysis and Byblos' own pushing. How he was presented to me in class, by a lecturer who was Catholic and believed in God, was basically Aquinas providing classic arguments but now dated and well answered. It seems, the only thing that was well answered were caricatures and strawman understandings.

I'll be buying a copy of the Feser's recent book, Five Proofs of the Existence of God. He writes very clearly and I'm sure it'll be a good read. If TrulyEnlightened really wants to go the extra mile to treating Aquinas' argument fairly and justly then I'd recommend this book to him too.
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby RickD » Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:45 pm

I just ordered Feser's Five Proofs.

:rockcool:
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby Kurieuo » Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:56 pm

RickD wrote:I just ordered Feser's Five Proofs.

:rockcool:

Just don't become Catholic. :P
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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby RickD » Tue Nov 21, 2017 5:11 pm

Kurieuo wrote:
RickD wrote:I just ordered Feser's Five Proofs.

:rockcool:

Just don't become Catholic. :P

I just now realized Feser is catholic.

:pound:

His book is Five Proofs For The Existence of God, not a Mary worshiping manual, right?
:mrgreen:
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9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

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Re: Skepticism and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

Postby abelcainsbrother » Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:18 pm

RickD wrote:
Kurieuo wrote:
RickD wrote:I just ordered Feser's Five Proofs.

:rockcool:

Just don't become Catholic. :P

I just now realized Feser is catholic.

:pound:

His book is Five Proofs For The Existence of God, not a Mary worshiping manual, right?
:mrgreen:



I will be ordering it and like I've explained before I'm good at picking out the good stuff and shunning the bad stuff and so I won't be becoming a Catholic.I will pick out the good stuff and shun what might be bad stuff.Alot of times a book can be mostly right but it can have bad stuff in it too and its the other way too a book can be mostly wrong but have good stuff in it.The important thing is to pick out the good stuff and shun the bad,not just believe everything it says because you like the person,etc.
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