I cite Byblos last post in our conversation and reply after it.
Page 10 #141 Post by Byblos » 27 Nov 2017, 16:40
- - - - - -So Nils, getting back to this thread and your last post to me. But first I wanted to address this little nugget of wisdom from our friend:
trulyenlightened wrote:Our reality is the result of quantum interaction with the the many fields(electromagnetic, gravity and anti-gravity, Higgs, Quantum, Strong), etc) that permeate the ether of space-time.
That's pretty much what the materialist's argument for reality boils down to and it is precisely why I suggested the PSR, i.e. to show the utter incoherence and self-defeating nature of such an argument. The argument terminates with inexplicable, brute force facts which is a violation of the PSR. If you ask the materialist the next logical question: well, where did these fields and their laws of interactions come from, what is their explanation (as demanded by the PSR)? The ultimate answer to their relality must invariably be 'because that's the way is'.
There are 3 principles that must be assumed for scientists to do what they do so successfully and I will repeat them:
1. The law of non-contradiction
2. The principle of causality
3. The principle of sufficient reason
And 'because that's the way it is' violates at least 2 of the 3, thereby not only undermining the very science they hold so dear but also end up explaining nothing in the process. It is like a hamster climbing the ladder of knowledge on a quest for ultimate knowledge, knowing full well the ladder he chose is a wheel that spins interminably.
So moving on from that, let's see if we can come up with a more plausible answer than 'because that's the way it is', something that might not violate the PSR.They may be new to you but they're not new at all. Leibniz is probably the philosopher most often associated with the PSR.Nils wrote:But yours arguments are new to me so don't be too upset by my comments.I will definitely post of logical syllogism of the argument and it will be detailed (because I will most likely quote verbartim from Feser's book). But first, let's examine yours.Nils wrote: Here I would like to see how your argument goes in more detail - a logic schema with premises and conclusions.Nils wrote:Here is my understanding (for what it is worth). Note that this is only a draft, just a fast try.Yes.Nils wrote:P1. Everything must have an explanation (PSR)That's already a violation of the PSR since everything must have a reason. So no, according to the PSR the mutiverse either has an explanation exterinsic to itself or it is self-explanatory.Nils wrote:P2. A multiverse has no explanation (everyone agrees, I think)Only if the multiverse's explanation turns out to be exterinsic (and as we will see, it is).Nils wrote:C1. Hence, there has to be some other thing that explains the universeI know you probably meant well but again, that's a violation of the PSR. EVERYTHING needs an explanation. But reason demands that at least one explanation must be inherent in the thing itself (intrinsic, self-explanatory), otherwise we'd have an inifinite regress of extrinsic explanations and end up explaining nothing at all.Nils wrote:P3. There is another thing that doesn't need an explanation (self-explanatory, pure actuality)It doesn't have to be all those things (as if those are assumptions we are sneaking into the argument). Those are attributes that we deduce from its self-explanatory nature. Let's take a few of them for now.Nils wrote:P4. That other thing has to be intelligible, immaterial, timeless, immutable, which is subsistent existence itself.
- Immaterial: since matter is contingent by nature (it can be or not be), or in more aristotelian jargon, it is a mixture of potentiality and actuality, then the self-explanatory entity must be immaterial.
- Immutable: Anything that changes is a mixture of potentiality and actuality. Since a pure actuality has no potential whatosever, it stands to reason that it is also changeless or immutable.
In fact, extending the potentiality/actuality idea further, from reason alone we know that this entity must be pure actuality with no potential whatsoever. For if it had any potential to be actualized, it would then depend on some other extrinsic explanation. Therefore it would not be self-explanatiry.Correct.Nils wrote:P5. That thing we call God
C2. There is a God that is self-explanatory, pure actuality, intelligible, immaterial, timeless, immutable, which is subsistent existence itself.Let me know what you think so far. We can continue discussing other attributes including intelligence.Nils wrote:I would like to see a motivation for P3 and P4.
Byblos, I missed your answer in November, there were another discussion ongoing. Your comment in the thread Essence and Existense reminded me.
Your argument seems rather straight forward to me.
1. To be able to use the scientific method (or to be rational) you need the Principle of sufficient reason. (PSR)
2. PSR requires that you are able to give reasons for everything.
3.Either the explanation requires an explanation extrinsic to itself, in which case it is contingent on that extrinsic explanation, or
4. the explanation is fundamentally self-explanatory (not contingent on any other explanation)
5. To avoid endless iteration you need at least one self-explanatory explanation.
6. You give some attributes that follows from that an explanation is self-explanatory as immaterial, immutable, and absolutely necessary and there may be more.
What I am missing is an explanation of what is required for an explanation to be self-explanatory. Are the attributes you mention sufficient? Even if the attributes seem to be reasonable for a self-explanation I have difficulties to see that they are sufficient. When it comes to the bottom line there is a difference between an entity that exists and an entity that doesn’t exist and the difference has to be explained or there is no explanation at all. In the latter case the entity is unexplained. How can the concept of self-explanation help?
Can the requirement of absolute necessity help? It does exclude the possibility of a world without the entity but how can you prove that an entity is absolute necessary?
And then you still have to show that absolute necessity implies that the entity is self-explained.