The Instigator
Pro (for)
4 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

Debate about whatever you want

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Post Voting Period
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after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/4/2015 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 821 times Debate No: 74764
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (8)
Votes (1)




Hello and welcome to, "Debate whatever you want"! This is your host, 9spaceking.
Here are the rules:
-Round one you decide your topic. You also decide which side you are on (and by default I am on the opposing side)
-Round two, we debate. We construct our arguments.
-Round three, we argue. We rebut our arguments and make new ones if we want.
-Final round, we conclude by refuting while trying our best to not make new arguments

As for the topic, it CANNOT be:
-A "big issue"
-Something that is not debatable (White is black; 1+1 is over 9,000; George Washington will be elected next president,etc.) If you are unsure about this, then private message me.

Bonus kudos if you manage to come up with a topic that I've never debated before.


RESOLVED: Rationalism is a sound position

9space goes PRO, 18K goes CON

In epistemology, rationalism is the view that "regards reason as the chief source and test of knowledge." This is the view contra to that of empiricism, which states that "knowledge comes only or primarily from sensory experience." CON position will not argue in FAVOR of Empiricism, but rather, will deny Rationalism

A sound argument is a valid argument with true premises; in this debate, hence, PRO will argue that Rationalism as an Epistemological Position, provides a sound ANALYSIS of the finding of what one calls TRUTH

(Resolved is not part of the debate motion)

Good luck to all! May the best deb8r win!

Debate Round No. 1


The burden of proof
My friend, why do you have to make it so easy on you? You say all you have to do is to refute that rationalism is. But let's take a closer look at these two. Arguably, these two are, well, complete opposites. To put simply, the former, rationalism, is from "priori knowledge", knowledge gained beforehand. Such examples are in mathematics, gemetry, and logic--if the premise is correct, then the following facts listed will also be correct. On the other hand, Empiricism is the "postriori" knowledge, the knowledge gained from experience. This covers just about everything else, such as how to play the piano, swim, and jumping, although it is not entirely physical related, of course. However, note that in the real life, our knowledge comes from BOTH combined together. It makes sense. You can't exactly prove from mere experience that "3+3 equals 6 because I have three apples and then I had three more apples and now I have six apples". To clarify this, let us think that a man in experience has only seen trees with green leaves. Therefore he reasons that all trees' leaves are green. [But using rationalism, one would think through, knowing that the leaves have special chemicals that turns them yellow in the fall] But he is wrong, because experience can only last so long. Experience must be combined along with reason in order to be fool-proof. (While on the other hand, logic is solid and unmoving, and does not necessarily have to come from experience).

And speaking of logic's solitity, let us move on to my first argument...
Thinking through can deduce many things that work out
A famous thinker of rationalism is Descartes. You've probably heard of his unbeatable argument, "I think, therefore I am." Is this really from experience? Are you there whenever you think about yourself? Sure you are, but from mere experience you cannot deduce that you will always be there regardless of the circumstance. Only by using logic can you know that if you can think, you are there, even if a devil is trying to fool you into being "absolutely nothing".

This is explained in one of his other experiments. He had used a wax candle as an example. As you observe a wax candle burn, the color changes, the smell becomes different, and the size dwindles down. If you have no reason or logical deduction, and mere experience, we can be confused and even think that we are seeing a different thing. However, by using human intuition, we know that the wax candle is still a wax candle, just merely changing size or form.

Any of our five senses can be fooled
You may notice that I am dismissing empiricism further and further. Why is that? Well you see, by dismissing empiricism, I further support rationalism. These two theories are truly opposites, for if I support one then I must disprove the other, and if I support the other, rationalization must be put down. That is how my opponent attempts to avoid the burden of proof by trying to say that denying rationalism does not mean favoring empiricism, but saying rationalism is not sound means empiricism is nearly the only way of thinking! [Think about it, without reason, we only have experience to lay back upon.]

A good example of why empiricism is not trustworthy is the infamous eye optical illusion.

Pictured above is only one of the few well-known eye optical illusion. Even with experience, you can only suppose that the circle is bouncing about, moving like you're on LSD. As you can see empiricism is really not to be trusted. On the other hand, with reason you can tell that in reality the picture is perfectly still, even if your eyes tell you otherwise.

But at the end...
In the end, I really don't have to prove rationalism to be more powerful than empiricism. In fact, my opponent COULD indeed try to prove empiricism better, but it actually wouldn't prove rationalism to be false. Both systems have their own flaws, and saying purely, 100% using one over another is completely pointless. But of course, according to the resolution, I have to prove rationalism sound, being able to prove the truth. While sometimes it indeed can be flawed, and human intuition cannot always just "think" and "prove" that, for example, God exists, or perhaps eternal souls, they are still vague topics (which even experience has yet to fully prove or disprove). However, I believe I have managed to prove enough that rationalism does indeed, most times prove the truth, and is therefore trustworthy, or in the words of the resolution, a sound system.


18Karl forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


All previous arguments extended.
We can see from his forfeit, and logically deduce that he will lose conduct point for the forfeit, even though the voting has yet to begin. We know from the morals and instilled rules that forfeits will indeed make you lose conduct point assuming the conduct of both parties are equally good to start with. As we can see rationalism is indeed valid, which is what I'm trying to stress. Even just by thinking something alone, going with your gut and instincts, can be sound and find the truth. "Sound" does not mean 100 percent true, (as truisms would be nearly impossible to argue), but true for most of the time. And I have proven it through my examples and my use of logic.


18Karl forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


Sadly my opponent has forfeited two rounds in total. That means even if he completely refutes my case it is a blitzkreg and very unfair. Thus, I win.


18Karl forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by 18Karl 2 years ago
ayyy you beat a boy who had to study for final exams GG
Posted by 9spaceking 2 years ago
lol once again I beat an unbeatable XD
Posted by 18Karl 2 years ago
I'll choose something fun C; trust me. I was initially going to do "RESOLVED: Psychoanalysis is pseudoscientific," but I'll find something else cos that would be too hard on your part
Posted by 9spaceking 2 years ago
aw man, I will lose.
Posted by Wylted 2 years ago
I got beat to it, dang it
Posted by 18Karl 2 years ago
<3 9space!
Posted by 9spaceking 2 years ago
As long as the topic is debatable, it's fine.
Posted by EAT_IT_SUKA 2 years ago
Can I provide my own definitions?
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by tejretics 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro gains conduct due to Con's forfeiture of the majority of the debate. Con forfeited all rounds with the exception of the first, and forfeiture is rarely considered acceptable conduct in any, formal or informal, debate setting. Thus, Pro gains conduct. Con's forfeiture hindered their ability to refute Pro's claims that rationalism is a sound position in any manner, and Con also failed to present a case or to negate the resolution and demonstrate epistemological rationalism to be unsound in any manner. Pro showed he did not need to demonstrate rationalism was *correct* so much as *sound* and logically/epistemologically valid, which Pro succeeded in doing. Therefore, arguments and conduct go to Pro. As always, happy to clarify this RFD.