Sunday, February 04, 2018

Being Skeptical of doubt






Regular posters Skeptical and Kristen rise issues regarding faith, belief, and rationalization thereof, from the comment section (WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 31, 2018):

http://metacrock.blogspot.com/2018/01/premises-4-7-ts-argumet.html?showComment=1517721925858#c4266919942066958615


Kristen said...
In my own life, I believed as a child, rejected belief and the arguments of belief in my early teens, and returned to belief in my later teens. So what changed? I had some personal experiences in my mid-teens that I could not overlook, that appeared to me to be divine, which I could, I suppose, have simply dismissed, but they were-- well, compelling! And which then became part of my rational warrant to believe.


Im-skeptical said...

Kristen, you speak of experiences that you interpret as divine. That is the kind of thing that I call a-rational.
Notice that she never told us what those experiences are, he asserts they are rationalizing. For  all he knows she could have been called before the throne of God in the seventh heaven but he asserts this must be rationalization. He gives no basic reason why she would need to assume its divine. Skeptical is asserting the nature of the case without knowing the facts; the germ of belief is out there waiting to infect us.

 Im-skeptical said...

Many so-called ex-atheists (including most of the Christians I talk with, it seems) never really abandoned their belief. They simply put it in the closet. And then it came back - but not because of any logical argumentation. As you said yourself, you had those experiences. And that's the real reason for your return to belief.
I see this statement in that light, that he must think belief as some kind of germ, because he can't accept it on it's own terms he has to reduce it to some involuntary condition that the faithful can't understand or resist. He asserts this without knowing a single argument or the nature of the experiences. He does this in place of answering the argument presented on the blog. That is clearly ratiocination. Experience is not antithetical to reason. If we don't have knowledge of the world, which is essentially experience our ideas are self referential, logic is tautological. Doesn't tell us anything.

im-skeptical said...

The logical arguments for theistic belief come after one has already accepted belief (most often on an a-rational basis, as I said). Those arguments provide what most people would call their rational basis for belief (but were never their reason for believing in the first place). And it is those same arguments that someone like myself rejects along with theistic belief.

"Most often the rational basis I said." in other words evoking his paradigm that belief is a  germ and not a set of ideas and (one need not even address arguments or even know the details of experiences) answering the arguments is irrelevant. He asserts that no one ever bases belief in argument  but of course they do.I have actually convinced people to believe in God based upon my arguments.He asserts this cannot be. That's obviously a rationalization itself. Now I agree that real faith is a complex and dynamic process. No one does launch into a life time of faith based upon one argument, Rather the conversion process is a dialectical and dynamic one based upon an interplay of experiences and arguments. You have to have reasom to interpret experiences.

He sets up reason as some kind of ultimate standard to which all forms of belief must adhere, but when push cones to shove he doesn't even  bother to reason about the  God argument he's assailing . Moreover, most atheist make a big thing out of being empiricists and will deny the necessity of deductive argument in the face of empirical data. But he seems not to get the connection between experience and empirical knowledge. He eschews the notion of understanding experience: "...you speak of experiences that you interpret as divine. That is the kind of thing that I call a-rational.." Experience is antithetical to being rational most atheists laud empiricism. I understand he's not speaker of being irrational but a-rational, or outside of reason.

Kristen has not told us of her religious experiences in the comment section and yet she has written about some of them,I quote from her blog because it is available in the public record.[1]In her review of my book the trace of God she discusses overprices she had that fit the criteria of mystical experience: she also talks about the reasoning process that at one point led her back to faith.

For months I struggled, suspended between faith and doubt.  And then an online friend ... showed me that the real problem was that I was letting the skeptics determine the rules of engagement, playing the rationalists' game on their own playing field. They said my God was a big imaginary friend in the sky.  They made it sound so silly. But Doxa helped me see that I didn't-- and needn't-- believe in that little straw-man deity anyway.The scientific rationalists said I needed to question all my assumptions.  But I began to understand that they were leaving most of their own assumptions unquestioned.  Could their assertion that everything that is real can be scientifically verified, itself be scientifically verified?[2]
Her experiences are validated evidently by the 200 studies I analyze in the book, but we also see her using reason and experience together in a whole faith making process. [3]

I once wrote an article that focuses on the process of faith or doubt in response to facing trials in life, This topic is more about the initial motive for belief, Skep has done nothing to show us he understands that process or that he has any valid s things to say about it. I recommend reading this other essay too because it';s very goof for exposing the hypocrisy of skepticism. Here's a sample.
O but look at the nature of religion and religious people. It's all based upon lies and religious people are hysterical and stupid so of course it has to be that I'm just rationalizing. They are not rationalizing they are brave men of science. This is kind of perpetual knee jerk doubt is just the kind of penetrating insight people have when they become incurably skeptical. But where I come from we have another name for it. It's called "bigotry." I define rationalization as the refusal to think deeply about an issue but putting up a self deceiving pretense of thought by going through the motions of critical thinking without looking deeply at one's own interest or prejudices. That's what those guys are doing. I'm not doing that becuase I was an atheist. I had doubt. I was one of those perpetual doubters who said as long I have an excuse for doubt or a breath I will continue to doubt. I struggled thought that by honestly confronting the nature of my experiences and thinking as deeply and logically as I could about them. I came to the conclusion of faith. I don't see any evidence that would disprove or overturn the warrant for belief that I have discovered. I don't see any reason not to credit God with the good and refuse to blame him for the bad. That is logical and consistent given what I know about God. What is not logical is the circular reasoning that says "there's no evidence for God's reality, but the evidence that people put forward must be wrong, must be rejected, because there's no evidence."[4]



Sources


[1] Wordgazer, "Book Recoemdatiom, The Trace of God by Joseph Hinman," Wordgazer's words, blog (Saturday, May 31, 2014)
http://krwordgazer.blogspot.com/2014/05/book-recommendation-trace-of-god-by.html
(access 2/4/18)

[2] Ibid

[3] Joseph Hinman, The Trace of God: Rational Warramt for Belief, Colorado Sproimgs, Grad Viaduct Publishing, 2014, no page. available on amazon"
https://www.amazon.com/Trace-God-Rational-Warrant-Belief/dp/0982408714

Ground breaking research that boosts religious arguments for God to a much stronger level. It makes experience arguments some of the most formidable.Empirical scientific studies demonstrate belief in God is rational, good for you, not the result of emotional instability. Ready answer for anyone who claims that belief in God is psychologically bad for you.


[4]Joseph Hinman, "Rationalizing Faith or rationalizing Doubt?" Metacrock's blog, (Sep. 11,2013).
http://metacrock.blogspot.com/2013/09/rationalizing-faith-or-rationalizing.html
(access 2/4/18)

see my book, The Trace of God Rational Warrant for belief on amazon



58 comments:

im-skeptical said...

Joe, you don't understand anything I say. NOTHING. You don't listen, and you don't comprehend. You only disagree - and without ever bothering to find out what I mean.

I was discussing the difference between what is rational and what is a-rational. I didn't make any pronouncements about what is good or bad, about what is valid or otherwise. I didn't say anything about "rationalizing". I don't deny that we ALL use a-rational processes. I wasn't trying to point out any fault, or to place "my side" above yours.

Did you pay attention to the part of the conversation where both Kristen and I were agreeing with each other? Why do you try to turn it into a battle? What's the matter with you, anyway?

Joe Hinman said...

bull shit. te quotes are it;s obvious.you have a responsibility to make yourself understood,

Im-skeptical said...
Many so-called ex-atheists (including most of the Christians I talk with, it seems) never really abandoned their belief.

you are making an assumption about what is going on in Kepler's minds,you are also disingenuous because you do the double mind thing, believe/not-believe thing too. But you assert for yourself it's hypo ethical,but for believers because they come Danone the side of belief you assert they weren't really serious about unbelieving,,


"They simply put it in the closet. And then it came back - but not because of any logical argumentation. As you said yourself, you had those experiences. And that's the real reason for your return to belief."

assertion with no support

im-skeptical said...
The logical arguments for theistic belief come after one has already accepted belief (most often on an a-rational basis, as I said).

ignorant and based upon no support,no research,

Those arguments provide what most people would call their rational basis for belief (but were never their reason for believing in the first place). And it is those same arguments that someone like myself rejects along with theistic belief. 7:23 PM [Image]

most of my post was sabot the mutually reinforcing nature of a dialectical process of experience and reason you contently do not understand that and said nothing about it,

I acknowledged that you know the distinction between a rational and irrational I said thaht in the article,but your post still has problems,





im-skeptical said...

you assert they weren't really serious about unbelieving
- Let me quot YOU, Joe: "anger at God cums first, rationalization rebellion with pseudo logic comes after". What are you telling us? That for you, atheism is based on anger and rebellion against God. But a real atheist cannot be angry at God. It is logically impossible. You have to be a theist (or a closet theist) to be angry at God. An atheist doesn't believe God exists, and so he can't possibly be angry at God.

assertion with no support
- Kristen told us about her religious experience. And she said that it was her reason for believing. You also base your belief on religious experience. What more support would you like me to provide.

ignorant and based upon no support,no research
- Allow me to quote from the Catholic catechism: What moves us to believe is not the fact that revealed truths appear as true and intelligible in the light of our natural reason: we believe "because of the authority of God himself who reveals them, who can neither deceive nor be deceived".28 So "that the submission of our faith might nevertheless be in accordance with reason, God willed that external proofs of his Revelation should be joined to the internal helps of the Holy Spirit."29 Thus the miracles of Christ and the saints, prophecies, the Church's growth and holiness, and her fruitfulness and stability "are the most certain signs of divine Revelation, adapted to the intelligence of all"; they are "motives of credibility" (motiva credibilitatis), which show that the assent of faith is "by no means a blind impulse of the mind".30
This tells us that we submit to faith first, and it isn't because of "natural reason".

most of my post was sabot the mutually reinforcing nature of a dialectical process of experience and reason
- And you continue to ignore the fact that I was not attempting to rebut your post.

Mike Gerow said...

I think, if you admit that belief has rational warrant, you got some troubles here, skep...

As per your short comment to me on the other thread, an existential/a rational choice would be one where there was no (logical) mechanism for decidability, a choice between two (or more) neutral, equal, or unrelated possibilities.

So, as such, how could belief & unbelief be "asymmetrical" as you claimed (even if unbelief only consists of choosing not to make a choice), since, in purely existential terms, a non-decision has to be seen as equally a form of decision also....

Seen this way, I think your comment might be boiled down to something like, "vanilla is more rational than chocolate" or "chocolate is arational, vanilla is rational" ...if you know what I mean? Iow, to defend that comment, you'd have to show see asymmetry between an arattional choice and an arational non-choice (specifically, given a situation where is no decision-making mechanism to guide you.)

Mike Gerow said...

....Iow, are you only making an "existential" choice yourself in choosing unbelief over belief unless given a logical - i.e. Logically compelling - i.e. mechanistic - reason for belief...if you already admit that belief isn't incompatible with being logical?

&, if so, where is the asymmetry?

im-skeptical said...

I think, if you admit that belief has rational warrant, you got some troubles here, skep...
- That depends on how we come to belief (which is what I was talking about). You can become a believer for other-than -rational reasons, like a religious experience. You might then come up with logical reasons foe believing. This is what the catechism describes. In that case belief could have rational warrant, but it was still motivated originally by an a-rational process. That's what I was saying, and there's nothing contradictory about it. It is consistent with what we observe.

How can belief and unbelief be asymmetrical? Once again, remember that I'm not saying it must be. I'm only talking about what we observe. Take Joe's example of being angry at God. That's what he call atheism. But it isn't atheism at all. You have to believe to be angry at God. But what about real atheists? Have you read any of their stories? They invariably speak of logical problems with the biblical stories. They talk about the incoherence of belief. They never say "I felt something calling to me" or "I felt the presence of the non-Godly spirit". Compare that to what theists say. Read Kirsten's experience. It isn't about logical arguments at all, but it is quite typical. This is the asymmetry I'm talking about.

Mike Gerow said...

Joe was just making up a counterexample to your claim of "asymmetry"....

Also, sure, but there's other ways of interpreting mystical experiences besides theism anyway: cf a lot of Buddhistic ideas. So the choices and motivations are more complicated than just having an experience.

Okay so, is the choice of not believing unless motivated by a compelling logical argument also an equally arational choice? After all, some decisions sometimes have to be made arbitrarily somehow, outside of logic. (Eg, we could concoct a moral dilemma - like maybe a 50% chance to save 5 people vs a 90% chance to save only one? - where there would seem to be no calculus to help us choose, but doing nothing would still seem the least moral choice.)

So, for the sake of argument, if it would also be equally rational to believe, then...what?

im-skeptical said...

Okay so, is the choice of not believing unless motivated by a compelling logical argument also an equally arational choice? After all, some decisions sometimes have to be made arbitrarily somehow, outside of logic.

- I'm not sure what you're getting at. Are there examples of atheists who did not arrive at their non-belief by a rational process? Of course, and I never tried to deny it. But consider the set of people who think about and have some understanding of logical arguments for belief (including both theists and atheists). From among those, the ones who convert from atheism to theism typically do so for reasons like what Kristen described. Those who convert in the other direction typically do so because of logical arguments. That's just an observable fact. I urge you to read their conversion stories. You'll see what I mean.

Mike Gerow said...

Well, the qusstion is....

"Is it logical to choose to choose to be convinced by logical argumentation only, or is that too an existential choice?"

....The great logician, Kurt Godel proved, after all, that systems of logic (of any worthwhile scope) can't self-validate, can't ground or prove their own axioms.....and your problem here is is more complex if you admit belief MAY have rational warrant, may not be inconsistent with logic, even if not originating in logical argumentations, since neither can you bootstrap your preference for logic by using logic....

im-skeptical said...

I am an empiricist. I'll leave it to the philosophers to worry about whether anything can be proven. Empiricists ground their beliefs in observation. Given the fundamental assumption that we are justified in believing something based on the evidence of the senses, we can say we have rational warrant for believing things that are objectively observable in our world. And logic IS based on objective observation. We cannot say there is rational warrant for believing things that have no basis in objective observation.

Mike Gerow said...

Okay, you're saying that theism doesn't have rational warrant after all?

im-skeptical said...

Theists claim it does. That goes back to the many and lengthy discussions I have had with Joe. But I would remind you that Joe's claim is still based on objective observation. He just goes too far in how those observations should be interpreted.

Kristen said...

Going back to my example of believing my husband loves me: we already established that this has no basis in objective observation. It is supported by objective observation,but that is not its basis. And yet there is still a rational warrant to believe. Empiricm has limits.

Joe Hinman said...

im-skeptical said...
Theists claim it does. That goes back to the many and lengthy discussions I have had with Joe. But I would remind you that Joe's claim is still based on objective observation. He just goes too far in how those observations should be interpreted.

what part of dialectic don't you understand?

Joe Hinman said...

m-skeptical said...
I am an empiricist. I'll leave it to the philosophers to worry about whether anything can be proven. Empiricists ground their beliefs in observation. Given the fundamental assumption that we are justified in believing something based on the evidence of the senses, we can say we have rational warrant for believing things that are objectively observable in our world. And logic IS based on objective observation. We cannot say there is rational warrant for believing things that have no basis in objective observation.

Logic is not based upon observation, Without observation there's no food for thought, the logic itself is not based upon the observations.

claimig empiricism and lack of evidence is spurious especially when one has 200 empirical studies and you refuse to read one.''I still observe you have not made a single statement about the argument itself. you re just doing a little bait and switch where take us off the argument with a lot psychobabble about ideas you don't really understand

im-skeptical said...

Kristen, I'm merely saying that what we call "rationally warranted" is based on logic or derived from properly basic beliefs (as would apply with evidence of the senses). So something that is believed on the basis of emotional feelings, for example, would not be considered rationally warranted. This is not an argument that there's anything wrong with that. We all act on the basis of feelings and emotions. Yes, I agree that there is rational warrant to say something like "My husband loves me", because you can observe the way he behaves and the way he treats you. To say "God loves me" is not based on any observable fact. It's not rationally based, but it's something you feel.

im-skeptical said...

Logic is not based upon observation, Without observation there's no food for thought, the logic itself is not based upon the observations.
- OK. Let me put it another way. The world works in a way that is consistent with what we call laws of logic (just the same as laws of physics). We observe the way things work in our world, and from that we derive our understanding of logic. Everything we know about logic is based on observation.


claimig empiricism and lack of evidence is spurious especially when one has 200 empirical studies and you refuse to read one.
- But I have, Joe. That's why I know for a fact that your conclusions are not justified. You read far too much into those studies, and draw conclusions that they don't really support. Not to mention the fact that your "Argument From God Corrolate [sic]" is fatally flawed, as I have also pointed out (here).



'I still observe you have not made a single statement about the argument itself.
- OK. Since you insist, I'll make a post today. Wait for it. There's so much wrong with it, I don't think I can cover it all, but I'll at least hit some highlights.

Kristen said...

IM, I think your limitations on the bases for rational warrant, and on what constitutes properly basic beliefs, are unwarranted. As is being said, there is logic that is not solely from observation. There are also experiences that are not received through our five senses. If you have pre-determined not to accept any of these, based on your own philosophy, it does not follow that what you have pre-determined to be rational warrant, is all that rational warrant can include.

im-skeptical said...

Kristen, I am an empiricist. Empiricism has a long tradition in philosophy. You might say it is the gold standard of epistemology. I understand that theists need more, because empiricism does nor warrant belief in God. So we see things like Reformed Epistemology, in which theists claim that their feelings about God constitute properly basic belief. No argument or objective evidence needed, thank you. (That's what Plantinga tells us.) If that's good enough for you, fine. But be honest enough to admit that the only reason anyone would accept such an epistemology is to justify what they already believe. And it isn't applicable to any part of our understanding, except for that one thing - belief in God. Most honest philosophers would call it the ultimate case of special pleading.

Joe Hinman said...

m-skeptical said...
Kristen, I'm merely saying that what we call "rationally warranted" is based on logic or derived from properly basic beliefs (as would apply with evidence of the senses). So something that is believed on the basis of emotional feelings, for example, would not be considered rationally warranted.

not true according to Planting. emotion can be properly basic,


This is not an argument that there's anything wrong with that. We all act on the basis of feelings and emotions. Yes, I agree that there is rational warrant to say something like "My husband loves me", because you can observe the way he behaves and the way he treats you. To say "God loves me" is not based on any observable fact. It's not rationally based, but it's something you feel.

here you are trying to use doubt as proof, just because you doubt God exists is not proof that one's sense of love of God can't warrant belief,

7:40 AM Delete
Blogger im-skeptical said...
Logic is not based upon observation, Without observation there's no food for thought, the logic itself is not based upon the observations.
- OK. Let me put it another way. The world works in a way that is consistent with what we call laws of logic (just the same as laws of physics). We observe the way things work in our world, and from that we derive our understanding of logic. Everything we know about logic is based on observation.

I agree generally but there are laws of logic that are not observed from the wrod,


claimig empiricism and lack of evidence is spurious especially when one has 200 empirical studies and you refuse to read one.

- But I have, Joe. That's why I know for a fact that your conclusions are not justified. You read far too much into those studies, and draw conclusions that they don't really support. Not to mention the fact that your "Argument From God Corrolate [sic]" is fatally flawed, as I have also pointed out (here).

you are very good at understanding methodology ,Ihe worlds leading researcher in the field vs this guy who wants to win an argument on a message board I think you see,

'I still observe you have not made a single statement about the argument itself.

- OK. Since you insist, I'll make a post today. Wait for it. There's so much wrong with it, I don't think I can cover it all, but I'll at least hit some highlights.

7:52 AM Delete

I did go to the trouble to write a book you know

Kristen said...

Returning, IM, to something I said in the material Joe quoted from my blog above-- you cannot verify through empiricism that everything that is real can be apprehended empirically. If mine is the ultimate case of special pleading, yours is the ultimate case of begging the question.

im-skeptical said...

From the perspective of an empiricist, Reformed Epistemology is the ultimate case of special pleading. Look up the definition. From your perspective, I suppose, it's what justifies belief.

im-skeptical said...

OK. I've made comments addressing your Argument from TS here.

Kristen said...

IM, I'm not sure what made you assume that I don't know much about epistemology. I do know something about it. In any event, there are inconsistencies in many of your statements. You insisted to Joe that you weren't talking about rationalization-- but then you point-blank told me that I ought to be "honest enough to admit" that to go beyond the empirical in terms of epistemology, is only to "justify" what I already believe (in terms of religion). "Rationalize" and "justify" are actually synonyms here. I"m not, in fact, inclined to admit anything of the sort, and it has nothing to do with dishonesty.

You call it "special pleading" because from the point of view of empiricism, nothing can be known except through sense experience. But I am not specially pleading for religious knowledge as the only exception to your rule-- not mine!-- that the only way we can know anything is empirically. I have taken pains to show that by discussing the case of marital love. You went right back to insisting that the only way I can REALLY know my husband's love is through experiencing his behavior. I say again that behavior can be a ruse. There are other ways to know love than through sense experience. But married love is not religion. So I'm not making a special pleading for religion. It only seems like that to you because you have pre-determined that we can only know things empirically-- including marital love. Even logic, to you, is based in sense experience. Rationalism, however, is another form of epistemology, often juxtaposed to empiricism, that says this isn't true.

Looking at your last comment to me, I am tempted to use your own words back to you: From the perspective of a non-empiricist, Empiricism is the ultimate case of begging the question. Look up the definition. From your perspective, I suppose, it's what justifies unbelief.

Joe Hinman said...

here is the I am skeptiocal uote of the day:

"I must admit that I am not familiar with Derrida's work, but I'll try to explain it from Joe's perspective, and walk through his argument, step by step. So without further ado, let me state Joe's argument here:"

I don't what I'm talking about but I'm going to explain it (from another person's point of view no less) gotta love this guy,

im-skeptical said...

Kristen: I'm not sure what made you assume that I don't know much about epistemology
- Part of the problem I often encounter in these conversations is the tendency of people to read more into my words than what I actually said. I did not say that you don't know about epistemology. I don't understand why you should think so.

You insisted to Joe that you weren't talking about rationalization
- I wasn't. I tend to use words in the way the dictionary defines them. True, justification is part of that definition, but it is not synonymous with justification. To rationalize is to attempt to explain something logically, often when the logic isn't really applicable. But that's not what I was talking about. I was talking about using a-rational (non-logical) processes. They are not the same thing. If you justify something a-rationally, that is NOT rationalization. Reformed Epistemology is justification without any basis in logic (it is based on a-rational inner experience). That is not rationalization, by the definition of the word.

You call it "special pleading" because from the point of view of empiricism, nothing can be known except through sense experience
- No. I call it special pleading because it is the exception to the rule that applies in all other matters. We do know things through our senses. But RE claims that there is one thing we know by virtue of subjective feelings alone. That's special pleading. You say that you know love through something other than your senses. The fact of the matter is that without your senses, you wouldn't even know your husband exists.

Looking at your last comment to me, I am tempted to use your own words back to you
- I really didn't mean it as an insult. I am simply trying to explain what RE is, according to my understanding. I hope you can see what I'm saying. If it was anything other than something that you have a personal attachment to, you probably agree with me. For example, if I claimed to "know" some historical fact in the absence of any documentation or evidence, but simply because I have a "feeling" about it, would you say my claim is justified? Any reasonable person would say no.

Joe Hinman said...

You call it "special pleading" because from the point of view of empiricism, nothing can be known except through sense experience
- No. I call it special pleading because it is the exception to the rule that applies in all other matters. We do know things through our senses. But RE claims that there is one thing we know by virtue of subjective feelings alone. That's special pleading.


that is not special pleading, special pleading is not just any time one thinks he has the only avenue to truth. First of all that is not any kind of "claim" by religious experience. Religious experience doesn't make claims it's not a systemic philosophy. Special pleading is a logical fallacy not a epistemology.

If one were to claim that RE is the only way to know God or even just a valid way to know God that is not special pleading, It would have to first agree to some set of rules in order to say this is the exception. No one says RE is a valid way to know God as a rule. It's not a rule that RE his valise it just is.



You say that you know love through something other than your senses. The fact of the matter is that without your senses, you wouldn't even know your husband exists.

you have no basis such a claim, you are trying to assert an epistemic authority you don't have. Your assertion that the senses are the only way to know is not a claim backed by the senses,

im-skeptical said...

If one were to claim that RE is the only way to know God or even just a valid way to know God that is not special pleading

- Joe, that is just moronic. That is not what RE says, and not what I said. RE claims that the private inner feeling of God constitutes epistemic justification for belief of God's existence, with no evidence or argument required. LOOK IT UP. That belief is regarded as "properly basic" (in reformed epistemology), just as belief that a tree exists would be properly basic if we can see it (in traditional epistemology). What makes it special pleading is the fact that this properly basic belief in God based on inner feelings is the exception to the rule. For anything else, we would need the evidence of the senses to believe it exists. This is classic special pleading. LOOK IT UP.

Joe Hinman said...

If one were to claim that RE is the only way to know God or even just a valid way to know God that is not special pleading

- Joe, that is just moronic. That is not what RE says, and not what I said. RE claims that the private inner feeling of God constitutes epistemic justification for belief of God's existence, with no evidence or argument required.

there is no official books of RE claims Religious experience does not have a mind of it's own.It's a term for a group of experiences different people have.,Some people may claim that but not all do. You can't assert any time one has a RE one is automatically asserting this is the only way to know God, I don't claim that,



LOOK IT UP.

Look what up exactly? the systematic claims of religious expedience? what an idiot.
I wrote a book about religious experience I never found a source of official claims all RE people make.



That belief is regarded as "properly basic" (in reformed epistemology), just as belief that a tree exists would be properly basic if we can see it (in traditional epistemology).

I'm not into reformed epistemology most of those guys don't accept mystical experience. That;s one faction it/s not"the official authority."


What makes it special pleading is the fact that this properly basic belief in God based on inner feelings is the exception to the rule.

what rule? There is no official rule nook of epistemology,

I made charge that you can't prove any of your assertions through the five senses. You can't prove your arguments through the method you defend as the only valid method




For anything else, we would need the evidence of the senses to believe it exists. This is classic special pleading. LOOK IT UP

no you don't. you are telescope ignorant of Whiteheadand pretension

typical of your ignorant non thinking bravo about mystical experience, the studies prove it's real, it's quantifiable it's something that is documented to transforming lives; Most shrinks agree, half the shrink actually seek it, It does not work through the five senses.

there's a huge body of working the military that shows a valid nature of intuitive thinking,you completely invigorated all that stuff I documented on the magical thinking thinking post.

A study of the sense of presence shows that 60% of the time when respondents thought someone was looking at them they were,

Joe Hinman said...

you probably agree with me. For example, if I claimed to "know" some historical fact in the absence of any documentation or evidence, but simply because I have a "feeling" about it, would you say my claim is justified? Any reasonable person would say no.

different methods for different kinds of questions. you can't expect the same thin to work for all issues,

Kristen said...

IM, you've made it clear where you're coming from, and I don't see much point in continuing to try to convince one another.

But I'm going to tell you a couple of stories. The fact is, these are things that actually happened to me, and I simply can't explain them in terms of my five senses.

The first happened when I was about 8, so my sister must have been 10 or 11. She woke up one night screaming, and said she had had a nightmare that she was in a house that was on fire. She said it seemed so real, she felt like she was there. She'd never been in a house fire, so it wasn't a memory. The next day we found out that the house of one of her best friends at school had burned down that night.

The second happened when I was in college. One of my girl friends was working as part of a traveling group, and I had agreed to pray for them regularly. One afternoon I had this overwhelming urge to pray for one of the group. Now, keep in mind, I had never met any member of this team except the one girl who was my friend. I knew the other members only by name, and by the brief descriptions my friend gave me. I called my friend and asked her, "What's the matter with X?" She was very surprised. She said, "How did you know? He was admitted to the emergency room today, but he's going to be all right."

I know that to you these are just anecdotes. But they really did happen to me, personally. They were not religious experiences; they were not about God or an experience of God. But first my sister, and then myself, felt things that turned out to be real events, but not through sense experience. So you'll have to let me go on believing that there are other ways of knowing things.

im-skeptical said...

Joe: there is no official books of RE claims Religious experience does not have a mind of it's own.
- Please try to follow the conversation, Joe. I was talking about Reformed Epistemology, as espoused by Alvin Plantinga. (And I did spell it out a number of times.)


I'm not into reformed epistemology most of those guys don't accept mystical experience. That;s one faction it/s not"the official authority."
- Joe RE is based on inner experiences of God.


what rule? There is no official rule nook of epistemology
- Yes, there is. Epistemology tells us what constitutes justified belief, according to some well-established criteria (or RULES).


You can't prove your arguments through the method you defend as the only valid method
- I didn't say there is only one valid method. I said RE is special pleading. And it is.


you are telescope ignorant of Whiteheadand pretension
- I see plenty of pretension in you.


typical of your ignorant non thinking bravo about mystical experience, the studies prove it's real, it's quantifiable it's something that is documented to transforming lives; Most shrinks agree, half the shrink actually seek it, It does not work through the five senses.
- Yes, it's real. The part about transforming lives is your own unjustified conclusion. No causal relationship has EVER been demonstrated. Not by any of your "200 studies".


there's a huge body of working the military that shows a valid nature of intuitive thinking,you completely invigorated all that stuff I documented on the magical thinking thinking post.
- Talk about going off on a tangent. I did't say intuitive thinking was not valid. I argued the opposite. Right here in this thread.

A study of the sense of presence shows that 60% of the time when respondents thought someone was looking at them they were
- Read all about it.


different methods for different kinds of questions. you can't expect the same thin to work for all issues
- Special pleading works for your religious belief.

im-skeptical said...

Kristen, There are many such anecdotes. They are noteworthy because of their coincidental nature. But there are many, many more times when the coincidence doesn't occur. We just don't pay attention to that. If you have a thousand dreams, and one of them happens to match a real event, that's the only one you attach any significance to. All the rest are just dreams. But that one dream is no different from the rest.

7th Stooge said...

You, skep, say that you base your beliefs on observation, but that grounding is itself based on a belief. Your belief in observation can't depend on an observational basis without circularity.

There are justifiable beliefs we have that aren't based on observations, ie beliefs about rights, morality, math and logic, consciousness, intentionality, rational norms, etc. So I agree with you that it's rational to base (some) beliefs on observations, but that rational basis can't depend on an observation and not all rational beliefs are observational.

im-skeptical said...

Your belief in observation can't depend on an observational basis without circularity.
- I don't "believe in" observation. I accept one foundational assumption: the evidence of the senses provides epistemic justification for belief. Now you may say it's really just a belief, but if you do, you would have to say the same thing about your own foundational assumptions, whatever they may be. I that case, you are saying that everybody bases their beliefs on circular reasoning. We all need to make some kind of foundational assumptions, or we would have no reason to believe anything at all. The one that I make is perfectly reasonable. It is the single most universally accepted foundational assumption in epistemology.


There are justifiable beliefs we have that aren't based on observations, ie beliefs about rights, morality, math and logic, consciousness, intentionality, rational norms, etc.
- Here, it is important to distinguish between different kinds of belief. You van believe something as a matter of fact, or a matter of judgment. "Grapefruit tastes good" may be something you believe, but it is not an objective fact. Matters of judgment or opinion don't require epistemic justification of the same sort as matters of fact. That includes statements about morality and rights. Yes, I know many will insist that these things are objective facts, but they aren't. Different people have different opinions about them. Rules of math and logic, on the other hand, are considered objective fact. And just like every objective fact, they are observable. We understand them because we observe how things work in our world, and we observe that these rules always hold. Claims about things in other categories like intentionality ("aboutness"), souls, and the like are not based on objective observation, nor are they beliefs that are rationally based.

Kristen said...

IM, I know that you have to account for things that don't seem to fit into your view of things, by coming up with an explanation for them. We all do that. And so you explain my stories as coincidences viewed through confirmation bias. I don't blame you; you didn't experience them. But I will say that it is simply not the case that I have commonly felt an overwhelming urge to pray for someone I didn't even know, and sought to find out why, and discovered that it was just my imagination, that nothing was actually wrong-- and so the one time there was (by coincidence) something actually wrong, I remembered only that and forgot the others. This is simply not true.

It is also not true that my sister commonly or frequently woke up screaming from nightmares, and so this one time, when something real (by coincidence) corresponded to her nightmare, we all remembered only that occasion, and forgot all the others. No, my sister was not subject to nightmares, or to waking up screaming, as a common or frequent thing at all. These are not things I can convince you of, so there's no point in saying any more. But you were not there, and I was. That's all.

im-skeptical said...

Kristen, I once had a conversation with a Christian who told a story about a miracle that he had personally witnessed. He said he was in his home, drinking with some friends. There was a stack of video games on top of the TV. He closed his eyes for a moment, and then the video games were on the floor, half way across the room. He insists that nobody touched them. I suggested a plausible explanation for this event that doesn't involve a miracle. He became emotionally upset with me, and refused to believe that it could have been anything but a miracle. I don't believe it was a miracle, despite his protestations. I think that's what he really wanted to believe. I didn't try to argue with him any further.

Kristen said...

IM, I agree. No point in arguing about these things. Nothing will convince you that what happened to me was anything other than coincidence. Nothing will convince me that it was mere coincidence. So there we are.

But as for the topic of circularity (which I also mentioned, calling it "begging the question"), it isn't quite true that our beliefs about epistemology necessarily result in circular reasoning, or that everyone bases their beliefs on circular reasoning. The issue of circular reasoning most often arises in cases where someone's beliefs narrowly limit a topic. Then, from within that limitation, they assert the reasoning for that limitation. Certain kinds of Christians use what the Bible says to support why the Bible should be taken as literally true. That's obviously circular.

But I could say, "My epistemology says knowledge can come from the five senses, or from abstract logic, or from divine revelation, or from many other possible sources." It is not then circular reasoning to say, "My knowledge that knowledge can come from many sources, has probably come from one or more of those sources." Because the statement is not self-limiting, it is not circular. However, to say, "My knowledge that knowledge can only come from sense data, comes itself from sense data," is circular. Can sense data alone tell us that knowledge can only come from sense data? How can it do so?

im-skeptical said...

I don't know if you read my answer to 7th Stooge at 1:49 PM. We all make foundational assumptions. That's not circular reasoning. But you raise a good point. If one makes a limiting assumption as you describe, and then bases their beliefs on that, I would agree with you. Notice, however, the way it was stated. I didn't say "only". That is not the fundamental assumption of empiricism. We believe the senses are a source of valid information upon which we can base our beliefs. The question then becomes What other sources might there be? It turns out that there is overlap between different epistemologies. We accept the validity of logic. We just disagree on where it comes from. But there are other things, like subjective feelings, that we have examined closely, and we can see that these things are deeply flawed. We know that our emotions make us believe things that aren't true. That's simply a fact. It's not a trustworthy source of belief. And it turns out that divine revelation is another category of inner feelings. Why doesn't God reveal the same thing to everybody? Could it be that it isn't objectively real?

If you are serious about epistemology, you owe it to yourself to discover genuine sources of knowledge. If you have a different agenda, you can pursue that, possibly at the cost of sacrificing truth.

Joe Hinman said...

m-skeptical said...
I don't know if you read my answer to 7th Stooge at 1:49 PM. We all make foundational assumptions. That's not circular reasoning. But you raise a good point. If one makes a limiting assumption as you describe, and then bases their beliefs on that, I would agree with you. Notice, however, the way it was stated. I didn't say "only". That is not the fundamental assumption of empiricism.

True, good point But it's not us it's you. Or it's both both. You tend to overstate your position and lean to the ideological at first then correct yourself ok but you never acknowledge your fault. We expect you to take the heavily ideological side. We probably all do this as well.


We believe the senses are a source of valid information upon which we can base our beliefs.

you sound like you are speaking for an organization, the epistemology scouts.


The question then becomes What other sources might there be? It turns out that there is overlap between different epistemologies. We accept the validity of logic. We just disagree on where it comes from. But there are other things, like subjective feelings, that we have examined closely, and we can see that these things are deeply flawed. We know that our emotions make us believe things that aren't true. That's simply a fact. It's not a trustworthy source of belief.

that's a real mistake. you asserting that if subjective feeling doesn't give you the answer to all kinds of questions then it has no p;ace in life. Feeling ca,'t be trusted because it does't lend itself to objective answers. you are tailoring your prejeuidce to what you think is the basis of religious belief.



Joe Hinman said...

(1) Religious belief employs the same verity of epistemic approaches as does any other kind of thinking.

(2) Religious experience itself is not merely based upon subjective feeling, The subjective feeling goes with it as a kind of side effect,it's not the basis of mystical experience. The point of it being "mystical" is that it so transcends our ordinary experience that it defies an actuate and comprehensible description; of course you are over looking the fact that mystical experience is proven to be an effective life transforming agent.So un that case the feelings are indicative of one thing beyond both reason and feeling that is valid.

*3) you totally ignore what I said about military research on the intuitive showing that it can be effective, so it depends upon the context, It depends upon what kinds of thing you are trying to learn from it.




And it turns out that divine revelation is another category of inner feelings. Why doesn't God reveal the same thing to everybody? Could it be that it isn't objectively real?

No it's not.revelation employs a variety of forms. God does reveal the same things a lot of times But the major reason he doesn't generally is because we have to filter knowledge trough the deep suture of our own mental and cognitive and precognitive faculties.

If you are serious about epistemology, you owe it to yourself to discover genuine sources of knowledge. If you have a different agenda, you can pursue that, possibly at the cost of sacrificing truth.

listen to the amature instruct the experts, I know far about philosophy than you ever will young man. (I got young manned once myself I've been waiting years to do it to someone else,-)

Joe Hinman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe Hinman said...

hey Skep the armature comment was a joke,I appreciate your depth of thought on epistemology.

Joe Hinman said...

Skep this is the statement of yours that set me off: "
"If you are serious about epistemology, you owe it to yourself to discover genuine sources of knowledge. If you have a different agenda, you can pursue that, possibly at the cost of sacrificing truth."

that is pretentious and self aggrandizing, But as Dylan says:


In a soldier's stance, I aimed my hand at the mongrel dogs who teach
Fearing not that I'd become my enemy in the instant that I preach
My existence led by confusion boats, mutiny from stern to bow
Ah, but I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now

Yes, my guard stood hard when abstract threats too noble to neglect
Deceived me into thinking I had something to protect
Good and bad, I define these terms quite clear, no doubt, somehow
Ah, but I was so much older then I'm younger than that now

im-skeptical said...

We expect you to take the heavily ideological side. We probably all do this as well.
- Joe, I'm not nearly as ideological as you seem to think. I'm much more pragmatic. I use what works. Religion produces false beliefs. Science works. Empiricism works. That's why I call myself an empiricist. It's not any kind of ideological devotion. It's simply a matter of examining the possibilities as objectively as I can, and using the things that work (as best I can tell), and rejecting the things that don't.

you sound like you are speaking for an organization, the epistemology scouts.
- I think there's some projection going on here. When I say "we", I mean humanity in general, or any subset of it that is pertinent to my point. I don't belong to any organizations. I have no affiliations to which I must be loyal.

that's a real mistake. you asserting that if subjective feeling doesn't give you the answer to all kinds of questions then it has no p;ace in life. Feeling ca,'t be trusted because it doesn't lend itself to objective answers. you are tailoring your prejeuidce to what you think is the basis of religious belief.
- No, Joe. I am asserting that subjective feelings produce false beliefs (much more so than objective reality as discerned by the senses). I think that the reason you are so attached to them is because they do give you the answers you want to hear. But that doesn't make those answers true.

Religious belief employs the same verity of epistemic approaches as does any other kind of thinking.
- Religious belief is prone to accepting the validity of epistemic approaches that are rejected by more objective observers due to their unreliability.

of course you are over looking the fact that mystical experience is proven to be an effective life transforming agent.
- That's your interpretation of the data. You need to show causation, and you haven't done that.


you totally ignore what I said about military research on the intuitive showing that it can be effective, so it depends upon the context, It depends upon what kinds of thing you are trying to learn from it.
- You totally ignore what I had to say about intuition.

God does reveal the same things a lot of times But the major reason he doesn't generally is because we have to filter knowledge trough the deep suture of our own mental and cognitive and precognitive faculties.
- Isn't it ridiculous that God is unable to communicate more effectively?

that is pretentious and self aggrandizing
- The wording I chose was carefully considered. Read it again, but leave out the parts that I didn't say. I didn't advocate any particular position or belief. I didn't say mine is better than yours. This is something that makes conversing with you difficult. You always want to read things into my words. You always try to make me out to be some kind of ideological extremist, when in fact I'm nothing of the sort.

Joe Hinman said...

m-skeptical said...
We expect you to take the heavily ideological side. We probably all do this as well.
- Joe, I'm not nearly as ideological as you seem to think. I'm much more pragmatic. I use what works. Religion produces false beliefs. Science works. Empiricism works.

when you say:It works: you only mean it works to bolster your bigotry. Neither science nor epistemology work to disprove religion,they are not possessed to religion.
Epistemology doesn't "work" it's not part of atheism, it's not a technique or a party line.



That's why I call myself an empiricist. It's not any kind of ideological devotion. It's simply a matter of examining the possibilities as objectively as I can, and using the things that work (as best I can tell), and rejecting the things that don't.

empiricism is an ideology, It's not equivolant to epistemology it;s a subset,

you sound like you are speaking for an organization, the epistemology scouts.

- I think there's some projection going on here. When I say "we", I mean humanity in general, or any subset of it that is pertinent to my point. I don't belong to any organizations. I have no affiliations to which I must be loyal.

party line

that's a real mistake. you asserting that if subjective feeling doesn't give you the answer to all kinds of questions then it has no place in life. Feeling ca,'t be trusted because it doesn't lend itself to objective answers. you are tailoring your prejudice to what you think is the basis of religious belief.

- No, Joe. I am asserting that subjective feelings produce false beliefs (much more so than objective reality as discerned by the senses). I think that the reason you are so attached to them is because they do give you the answers you want to hear. But that doesn't make those answers true.

there is no objectivity. People are only capable of varying degrees of subjectivity Intuitive sense works in some areas as and it Ephesians the subjective nature of feeling because it;s based upon pretension. The myth of objectivity is a smokescreen behind which hides all manor of subjectivity.

Religious belief employs the same verity of epistemic approaches as does any other kind of thinking.

- Religious belief is prone to accepting the validity of epistemic approaches that are rejected by more objective observers due to their unreliability.

No it's not That is only the casein certain forms of popular piety

of course you are over looking the fact that mystical experience is proven to be an effective life transforming agent.

- That's your interpretation of the data. You need to show causation, and you haven't done that.

No that's the position of the majority of people who study it,



9:43 AM Delete

Joe Hinman said...

you totally ignore what I said about military research on the intuitive showing that it can be effective, so it depends upon the context, It depends upon what kinds of thing you are trying to learn from it.

- You totally ignore what I had to say about intuition.

that's because it;bull sit, since ignore the research you don't even live up to your own so called "empiricism"

God does reveal the same things a lot of times But the major reason he doesn't generally is because we have to filter knowledge trough the deep suture of our own mental and cognitive and precognitive faculties.

- Isn't it ridiculous that God is unable to communicate more effectively?

Isn't it ridiculous that we don't listen when he talks? isn't it seditious that we hind behind the myth of objectivity to justify our own subjective prejudices?

that is pretentious and self aggrandizing
- The wording I chose was carefully considered.

I'm sure it was, most pretentious, pompous self aggrandizing is

Read it again, but leave out the parts that I didn't say. I didn't advocate any particular position or belief. I didn't say mine is better than yours. This is something that makes conversing with you difficult. You always want to read things into my words. You always try to make me out to be some kind of ideological extremist, when in fact I'm nothing of the sort.

you can;t bull shit a bull shitter,

im-skeptical said...

How is it pretentious and self aggrandizing to say "If you are serious about epistemology, you owe it to yourself to discover genuine sources of knowledge"? Pretentious and self-aggrandizing is this: "My argent is written for intellect people with a sophisticated educational background". That is the stuff of a pompous ass.

Joe Hinman said...

Skep you statement cold be interpreted in a bad light, When I realized that is what I was doing I broke off the attach. It could just as easily be understood innocently I would rather see it that way,

7th Stooge said...

- I don't "believe in" observation. I accept one foundational assumption: the evidence of the senses provides epistemic justification for belief. Now you may say it's really just a belief, but if you do, you would have to say the same thing about your own foundational assumptions, whatever they may be. I that case, you are saying that everybody bases their beliefs on circular reasoning. We all need to make some kind of foundational assumptions, or we would have no reason to believe anything at all. The one that I make is perfectly reasonable. It is the single most universally accepted foundational assumption in epistemology.

But don't you "believe" that observation is the only true epistemic justification for belief? I agree with you that observation is ONE epistemic justification for belief but not the only one. For instance, the belief you have that observation is a justifiable foundation for belief is not itself based off of an observation. Yes, we all have to have foundational assumptions in order to form beliefs. That was my point: the idea that there's only one legitimate foundation is wrong because it can't satisfy its own conditions.

- Here, it is important to distinguish between different kinds of belief. You van believe something as a matter of fact, or a matter of judgment. "Grapefruit tastes good" may be something you believe, but it is not an objective fact. Matters of judgment or opinion don't require epistemic justification of the same sort as matters of fact. That includes statements about morality and rights. Yes, I know many will insist that these things are objective facts, but they aren't. Different people have different opinions about them. Rules of math and logic, on the other hand, are considered objective fact. And just like every objective fact, they are observable. We understand them because we observe how things work in our world, and we observe that these rules always hold. Claims about things in other categories like intentionality ("aboutness"), souls, and the like are not based on objective observation, nor are they beliefs that are rationally based.

You assume that beliefs about rights and morality are matters of taste or judgment because there are differences of opinion about them. But differences of opinion about something doesn';t mean that there's no fact of the matter. You would have to make an actual argument for why one (differnces of opinion) mean the other (no fact of the matter). You're just assuming, without argument, that observation is the only route to knowing objective facts.

Mike Gerow said...

That was my point: the idea that there's only one legitimate foundation is wrong because it can't satisfy its own conditions.

Well, it may not be wrong! It could still be right, but it's still unjustifiable? (If I understand you right?)

Yeesh, these convo's!

Mike Gerow said...

Rules of math and logic, on the other hand, are considered objective fact. And just like every objective fact, they are observable. We understand them because we observe how things work in our world, and we observe that these rules always hold.

Don't kid yourself.... Not even the laws of maths and logics are settled. There's lots of alternative systems that also work, & like everything else, the axiomatic systems that math and logic are assumed to be based in (eg the ZF set theorectical axiomatiration) have been challenged many times with differing accounts. The extent to which the existing predominant systems have held on not because they're better than other proposed options but just because they're entrenched is an open question too.

im-skeptical said...

But don't you "believe" that observation is the only true epistemic justification for belief?
- I believe that we should avail ourselves of every legitimate source of knowledge. I also believe we should examine the sources we have to find out how reliable they really are, and to understand what might be sources of false knowledge.

differences of opinion about something doesn';t mean that there's no fact of the matter.
- True. But it is a prima facie indicator. One should then ask whether there is an objective fact to be observed. I don't see it. Can you point it out to me? I think all you can do is to state your own opinion. If you think there's a fact there, show it to me.

You're just assuming, without argument, that observation is the only route to knowing objective facts.
- That's what you say.

Mike Gerow said...

"Why people don't like AC" .....

http://www.goodmath.org/blog/tag/axiom-of-choice/

im-skeptical said...

Don't kid yourself.... Not even the laws of maths and logics are settled.
- To the extent that rules of logic are demonstrated to be false, we should not consider them to be fact. To the extent that they are applicable in some domain, we should regard them as factual within that domain.

For example, you might point out that there are alternative geometries. Does that imply that the rules of Euclidean geometry are not facts? No. But we have to recognize the domain of applicability.

Mike Gerow said...

well, Euclidean geometry is "useful" where things have sufficient (approximate) flatness. To build things, eg.

Moral systems are useful too, perhaps, when people don't want to kill each other quite so often or whatever.....

From a pragmatic pov, it' would be hard to say that geometry is more useful than morals?

What makes geometry more "true" than morality then?

im-skeptical said...

An argument based on equating "useful" with "true"? You should know better.

Mike Gerow said...

Hmmm..... Well, if pragmatism isn't it, what's your measurement for "truth?"

If the grounds of math and logic aren't settled and established, as I suggested, do you still have a big overarching signifier that grounds yourr beliefs?

;-)