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regi

An Objectivist Riddle (ontology)

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2 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

All that exists is matter and energy in space and time.  There is nothing else.

 

How do you know?  Mathematical proof?  A double blind study?  Religious faith?

 

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17 hours ago, jts said:

How do you know?  Mathematical proof?  A double blind study?  Religious faith?

 

No one has seen and verified anything else.  And all the constructs in natural philosophy reduce to matter and energy.  If we were smart enough (we aren't)  we would not need anything more than matter and energy to explain -everything- that we see or detect.  We use other constructs to aid our limited brain power.

 

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19 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

All that exists is reductionism (to the max)?

--Brant

does reductionism exist?

Reductionism (warts and all) is still the most successful program in the natural sciences.

 

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3 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Reductionism (warts and all) is still the most successful program in the natural sciences.

Wasn't my question(s), but thanks for that answer.

--Brant

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5 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

No one has seen and verified anything else.

That which is seen and that which sees it are not the same thing.

I know I can see, (just as you do), but I cannot see my seeing. I know I can see, (just as you do), not by seeing it, but by seeing.

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7 hours ago, regi said:

That which is seen and that which sees it are not the same thing.

I know I can see, (just as you do), but I cannot see my seeing. I know I can see, (just as you do), not by seeing it, but by seeing.

I should have been more specific.  Seen as in perceived,  sensed,  detected (with a device or instrument).  Everything is physical (but not  necessarily massive)..  Fields such as the E.M fields, gravitational fields,  Higgs field etc are included (they are all mediated with bosons). 

I am stating the total and complete materialist position.  We sometimes  conceptualize aor visualize these things in what appears to be a non-material fashion but that is just a subjective illusion or image because our mental powers are limited.  After all  we have three pound brains  and  a few pounds of related neural tissue.  There is just so much that such organic stuff can do.

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1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

I am stating the total and complete materialist position.

Which I very much appreciate. You are at least consistent which not all physicalists (materialists) are.

1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

that is just a subjective illusion or image

That is what I question. What, exactly, is it that suffers from this illusion?

I'm a materialist but I believe material or objective reality includes more than the mere physical. I do not believe in anything mystical or supernatural. Life, consciousness, and the human mind are perfectly natural attributes of reality and do not exist except as attributes of physical living organisms, but are not themselves physical attributes. I think the strict physicalist form of materialism you hold limits one's ability to comprehend the full nature of material existence. My view does not conflict or in any way invalidate your view, because my view of life and consciousness depend on the validity of the nature of the physical. The physical is all that can be consciously perceived, seen, heard, smelled, tasted, and felt as well as all perception of the physical body called interoception (internal pain, emotions, etc.) but believing what is perceived is all there is ignores the fact of the conscious perception itself.

So now we both can be consistent, and you'll understand I do not consider your view incorrect, I only view it as incomplete and you'll no doubt consider my view as advocating what cannot be known because it cannot be perceived. That is what I advocate. I don't know I perceive by perceiving it, I know it because I do it.

Randy

 

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3 hours ago, regi said:

Which I very much appreciate. You are at least consistent which not all physicalists (materialists) are.

That is what I question. What, exactly, is it that suffers from this illusion?

I'm a materialist but I believe material or objective reality includes more than the mere physical. I do not believe in anything mystical or supernatural. Life, consciousness, and the human mind are perfectly natural attributes of reality and do not exist except as attributes of physical living organisms, but are not themselves physical attributes. I think the strict physicalist form of materialism you hold limits one's ability to comprehend the full nature of material existence. My view does not conflict or in any way invalidate your view, because my view of life and consciousness depend on the validity of the nature of the physical. The physical is all that can be consciously perceived, seen, heard, smelled, tasted, and felt as well as all perception of the physical body called interoception (internal pain, emotions, etc.) but believing what is perceived is all there is ignores the fact of the conscious perception itself.

So now we both can be consistent, and you'll understand I do not consider your view incorrect, I only view it as incomplete and you'll no doubt consider my view as advocating what cannot be known because it cannot be perceived. That is what I advocate. I don't know I perceive by perceiving it, I know it because I do it.

Randy

 

I have no argument with you.  We Materialists must stick together (primarily by electromagnetic  molecular bonds).

 

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2 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

We Materialists must stick together (primarily by electromagnetic  molecular bonds).

Did you try picturing that? :D

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On 10/8/2017 at 6:24 AM, regi said:

[1] Material existence is comprised entirely of existents. Or is it?

[2] The view that all of existence consists of all the existents there are is technically called an "entity ontology" in contrast to the opposite view called a "matter ontology." The entity ontology is implied in some philosophies (Locke, for example) and explicitly in others (Rand, for example). Rand said that only entities exist. In that view, "matter," is simply, "all the material entities."

[3] Based on the explicit entity ontology, Objectivism holds an entity view of cause. According to that view, it is an entity's nature and attributes that determine or "cause" its behavior. That is also the basis for the Objectivist argument for volition. They dismiss the "determinism" argument against volition (everything has a cause therefore everything is determined, by simply saying, for volitional beings, volition is the cause of their behavior.)

[4] The entity ontology is contradicted by another Objectivist assertion, however, "matter can be neither created or destroyed." But if matter is only entities, that could not be. Entities are created and destroyed all the time. If we try to get around the problem by saying matter can change its form we have adopted a matter ontology, because entities do not change from one kind of entity into another by some kind of transmutation. Some entities simply cease to be. Other entities come into existence that never were before; for example, every human being.

[5] If something can be neither created or destroyed, we must always have the same amount of it. When one thing changes into another, or ceases to be, or a new thing comes into existence, what is it we still have the same amount of? When the lamb becomes lamb stew, what is the thing, of which, there is still the same quantity? It certainly isn't lambs?

There's too much commentary in this thread to read, but I'll take a stab at the riddle [Disclaimer: Since the riddle is described as Objectivistic, I have to admit I don't know if my thoughts are Objectivistic, although I certainly lean Objectivist.]:

[2]

I'm not familiar with the terms "entity ontology" and "matter ontology."  But I make a distinction between existents and entities, and in it, the former subsumes the latter.  Thoughts of consciousness and characteristics of entities are also existents.

I don't know the context behind Rand's saying that only entities exist.  I'm more interested in philosophic truth than merely what she said though, and in the most fundamental sense, no, only existents exist.  Rand's supposed saying is too narrow as it excludes thoughts and characteristics. 

So I'd revise Rand's supposed view: Matter is what comprises entities.  And individual units of matter are constituent entities of the subsuming entity.

[4]

Because matter is not only entities, the rest of the riddle no longer stands.

But suppose Rand did say that only entities exist.  Perhaps the context was material existence (perhaps that's your reason for invoking [1]).  And perhaps Rand was conveying how matter consist of existents (as I earlier said).  Recognizing and identifying constituent existents is a metaphysical issue of perception (and some constituent existents require instruments to allow us to perceive) and an epistemic issue of specificity.

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