Everybody believes in a worldview!
Debate Rounds (4)
1. If I exist, then I have a belief in a worldview.
2. I exist.
3. Therefore; I have a belief in a worldview.
This argument applies to all humans naturally due to us having the ability to have abstract thinking. So I have heard many people say they don't believe in God, not because they don't believe religion, but because they don't believe in anything. I had one person tell me that he holds no beliefs, rather he conceives in concepts as they serve to a function. To me that is a perfect description of the word belief. To say "I don't believe in anything" I say is self-contradictory. You would have to apply the statement to itself making it newly worded as I don't believe in being able to not believe in anything...thereby believing in something. Everybody believes in something, in fact many things. Most will admit they believe in other individual minds separate from their own, or the fact that this world exists outside of their mind and is not just a dream.
This all boils down to certain Atheists that claim they don't believe in anything to escape the reality that they "believe" in Atheism. To admit they believe in Atheism would require them to provide evidence specific to their worldview.
However not to take away from the original subject of this debate...I state that everybody believes in something when it comes to metaphysics, or rather a worldview. Weather your an Atheist, Christian, Agnostic, or any other, you have a belief. Simply denying being apart of any category may feel like an individual has lifted the label of that category but has not excluded them from a certain categorical position. For example saying your no longer human, that you feel you have evolved and no longer respect the title as human for yourself, does nothing to take away the fact that you are still human as a human is defined.
As for defending premise # 2, I will let it be self supporting.
Looking forward to a response to this argument.
I will accept to enter this debate versus Mr. crede as long as we remain true to the resolution that "Everybody believes in a worldview". Everybody should be defined as all peoples, worldview should be defined as 2. A collection of beliefs about life and the universe held by an individual or a group- the free dictionary. The key word will be believe/belief which Miriam Webster defines as to accept something as true, genuine, or real. I now move on to my case. Disclaimer, sources need not count for or against as long as no statistical claims are made.
Contention 1 - skepticism
We must first look to the concepts of skepticism. Instead of scientific or religious, we turn to pyrrhonism and academic skepticism which states that knowledge of truth is impossible and we should refrain from making truth claims. When we look to the resolution we see the claim "Everybody believes in a worldview" it becomes clear the con need only prove the possibility or give example of how a sole/one belief free person may exist to prevail in these rounds. Looking to academic skepticism the idea is expressed that the knowledge of truth is impossible. According to the prior stated definition, to believe would require the acceptance of truth of something but this is negated. Now the claim could then be asserted that one believes in academic skepticism but it goes hand in hand with pyrrhonism. This makes truth claims (such as one "believes in academic skepticism") non-plausible and ultimately outside the philosophy. These views have existed since pre-A.D. times and were even similar to Platonism. To reject the possibility of existence of a single belief free individual over nearly 3 millenia is ridiculous. Rejection of a claim may be a belief under some definitions but the mindset that there is no absolute truths is a middle ground with no acceptance but an eternally open perspective.
Contention 2 - isolation and illusion of belief
When we look to the term worldview we are recognizing ideas that are either held by majority and or permeate the globe. To claim everyone has a belief in a world view ignores all individuals in isolated climates and regions. We can look to African tribes and to see that in such a community the outside world even until modern day is not known to exist . Cases also exist where certain peoples where forced to be kept in solitude such as basements or closets by abusive adults or parent ending many time in a global shut out and children who receive no education. More examples include children who never receive any form of education,those who become comatose, severely mentally handicapped, and split personality persona's that are self aware but only represent repressed parts of ones active self. Now onto the illusion of belief, we can first look to elements of hard and soft determinism that tell us that bio-chemical impulses in our brain coupled with our outside environment cause many of the actions and beliefs of man. Hard determinism would suggest all are controlled. Even if the science is rejected many cases of indoctrination exist and we consider those manipulated or brainwashed. So it shows that forced beliefs are still not our own or personal.
Contention 3 - Religious aspects
Finally, we look at the religious aspect which is not included in the resolution but discussed. It is quite possible and cases are in existence of people with no opinion at all of religion or no education of any religion. If the outside world defines said individual in a class or group that in no way means the individual being judged has a belief, simply that others do. Religion and metaphysics are terms tossed around by the highly educated but we can still look back to an uneducated or skeptic mindset and see them both debunked as components or all self aware and or self recognizing being.
In conclusion the con side rests for now and turns the floor back to pro for rebutting. Good luck to pro.
I very much enjoyed your definitions of worldview and belief. In fact, to save time I will just reference those definitions to show we have the same ideas regarding those key words.
Cons 1st contention: skepticism
I’m surprised that you referenced Pyrrhonism and Academic Skepticism as they assert that absolute truth cannot be known, not even the very statement that absolute truth can be known could even be known. You then restate my resolution of “everybody believes in a worldview.” You assert that the word belief requires a truth and is therefore negated because of Pyrrhonism and Academic Skepticism. Two problems with this logic:
1. Pyrrhonism and Academic Skepticism in stating absolute truth cannot be known is a logical fallacy in the form of a circular argument. It asserts, or rather presupposes the conclusion in the premise. Just adding at the end of the statement by saying, “not even being able to know if the statement truth cannot be known could be known” does nothing to correct this fallacy. It still presupposes that truth cannot be known without any evidence being given. It asserts the conclusion in the premise making it a circular argument and logically fallacious.
2. Even though I reject that absolute truths cannot be known…lets just say that truth can never be known for arguments sake. This does nothing to show logically that one will not have a worldview. You equate the word belief to having an acceptance of truth and therefore wrong because truth cannot be known. You forget that there are often relative truths, or even in the words of academic skeptics…”a plausible truth.” An absolute truth is not needed to have a belief, rather just any form of a justification. Therefore to say if absolute truths don’t exist, then a belief in a worldview cannot exist, is not logically justified. Even believing in Academic Skepticism as a worldview is perfectly plausible if you acknowledge relative or probable truths.
Lastly on this subject…saying there are no absolute truths never will be a middle ground for me. It just holds no water in the realm of Philosophy and Logic.
Cons 2nd contention: isolation and illusion of belief
Your first sentence in this contention is not in line with the definition you give for worldview. You are asserting here that a worldview is a view held by the world or a majority. Your definition which I agree with is how an individual, often shared with others but not necessarily, views the world however the world has thus far presented itself to the individual. So no matter who or where you are, you can possess a worldview. Even the person locked in his basement his whole life can have a worldview, even though it is very narrow and shielded to larger ideas of worldviews.
Your illusion of belief using soft determinism presupposes that the physical reality we experience is all there is…denying the supernatural…again this is a worldview. Then you say that brainwashed individuals don’t have their own worldview because it was forced upon them. Again this is true, or relatively true to that person, and in so makes it their own. In some cases another worldview will take over…but the individual’s ownership of his worldview was never non-existing.
Cons 3rd contention: religious aspects
People who have never heard of any popular worldview or religious aspect still can and do have worldviews. People that have never heard of these things are probably some form of uncivilized peoples and never have been exposed to such ideas. History shows us that these kinds of people, as shown in current day indigenous tribes located in uncivilized areas, are deeply religious. They believe in the supernatural and have ideas of right and wrong in how it relates to their reality. Even if they were not religious in that aspect they would have a worldview of purely action-reaction combined with self-survival.
This round I'm just rebutting the Con’s argument and so now it is back to you sir. Good luck Con!
Thanks to pro response. I will begin by attacking my opponents case then move onto refuting his attacks while building my case further.
We first needs look at his three step structure determining that everyone holds worldviews. Now he claims step 2 to be self-supporting but we see multiple flaws there in and in the cycle. First, we must see the failure of the claim that self-recognition of existence equals a holder of worldviews. Many animals and marginal humans prove to be self-aware but the cycle then demands that we accept animals hold world views as do newborn infants and those with advanced Alzheimer's and severe short term memory loss. Of course we see that impairments stop them from having worldview. This can be linked to my claim under contention 2 of uneducated children who then are working off evolutionary tendency and the multi-personality persona such as repressed 2 yr olds (ex. Sybil). Second, we see that it is not a self-supporting claim that we exist since true knowledge of such a thing is not possible.
Moving down we look to crede's contention one statements of not holding beliefs being a belief or "self contradictory. Pyrrhonism and Academic Skepticism will show this to be false and as I pick apart my opponents attacks later we will see it to be correct. Furthermore he even state's "Most will admit they believe" which does leave the minority who do not believe.
Further down we see a quick claim against atheist but Pro steps away to not "take away from the original subject". Con agrees with said claim thereby I would strike it out of the rounds.
Finally we look to Pro's last paragraph where he makes the assumed claim all people hold world views and then gives a faulty analysis and example. They show to be faulty because his example states that outside beliefs forcibly create our own. Reality of being human or not through societies vision or opinion only proves our opinion of what is perceived to be a majority view. In no way does it demand we have a belief and the example is unfair as it a human with a belief "you feel you have evolved".
Now onto my opponents attacks and rebuilding.
We look to the two attacks placed against Pyrrhonism and Academic Skepticism and see the errors in both namely.
Attack #1 : My opponent would like to claim the logic to be circular but this is not the case. I would like to point out his quote was not taken from my case but in addition we see that they are two philosophies that any individual could hold both true as parallels to one another. Neither theory forces us to check against the other but it is very possible a skeptic could walk with both. Link this back to the notion that Con needs only show the possibility or existence of one sole individual with no beliefs (which was never refuted).
Attack #2 : The main issue we run into is interpretation of definitions. We both agreed belief to be Acceptance of truth. Thus we can see absolute truths always come into play because holding a belief means we accept it to be the truth. Relative truth needs more examples or further justification and "plausible truths" fail in the scenarios of jointly having Pyrrhonism in the mix. Thus possibility of holding no beliefs remains intact.
Attack on contention #2
I concede that I failed to change my definition to be in line. Even so pro only argues it those isolated CAN have beliefs but it is just as likely or more so that they do not, especially in regards to the children of isolated individuals who receive no education.
Next, when looking to determinism it is not a held belief. The biochemical forces exist much like evolutionary drive to breath and eat are not beliefs but actions that occur. Finally,in brainwashing held views one does not accept as truth is not there own and breaks the agreed definition of belief.
Attack on contention #3
My opponent ignores my claim that an individual can choose to be apathetic to religion and that outside views have no effect on a state of belief.
As I originally stated, this argument applies to humans due to us having the ability to have abstract thinking. Assuming animals are self-aware, there is nothing to say they have abstract thought. It just shows they can navigate through life with self-preservation. Even still, unless one can communicate with an animal concerning matters of metaphysics you don't know if they have a worldview or not. Con then referenced infants, and the mentally handicapped. Again, if they don't have the ability yet, or inhibited by a mental condition, to say, speak, or conceive the idea of "I exist" then they are excluded from my premises.
Next Con attacked premise 2.
I was surprised at this because I thought for sure that anybody who denies his own existence isn't a sincere seeker of truth. Even if I don't really exist, at a minimum "I exist" is a relative truth. Again Con is presupposing with no evidence that absolute truths, such as my existence, can not be known.
Con quoted my first argument when I said, "most will admit they believe," to follow with a minority then don't believe. This quotation was taken out of context. If you continue the quote it reads: "Most will admit they believe in other individual minds separate from their own." The minority now in full context don't believe in separate minds from their own, which in turn is a belief. Never did it mean one is completely without beliefs.
Con quotes my original argument, "They show to be faulty (my examples of people fitting into categories) because his example states that outside beliefs forcibly create our own." I was trying to show that the words we use to define ideologies don't themselves create the ideology, rather are just tools to communicate certain concepts. For example examine the following dialogue between myself and Mr. X;
Pro: Do you believe in God?
Mr.X: I don't believe in anything.
Pro: So included in that you thereby don't believe in God?
Pro: So you are an Atheist.
Mr.X: No I don't believe in anything.
This is to show even though Mr. X denies the existence of God, and denies being an Atheist, he is still an Atheist if he continues to affirm there is no God. Atheist is just a word for one who does not believe in a God. People hold these words as labels and think the word itself is the worldview. But it is just a word used in communicating a certain definition. One must take away the feeling of a label and just look at the definition for it to become apparent to them. So Mr. X is an Atheist, just not self-proclaimed.
Next we go to Con's defense of my 1st attack on his 1st contention. I never argued that Pyrrhonism and Academic Skepticism were incompatible with each other. I took the root of both forms of skepticism that state absolute truth can not be known. I then showed how this statement is self-refuting thereby denying the idea that absolute truth can not be known. I am not throwing one out because of the other, rather I'm throwing both out on the fact that their root skeptic claim on truth, is logically fallacious. Con then misunderstands his goal for winning this debate by stating: "Con needs only show the possibility or existence of one sole individual with no beliefs (which was never refuted)." The correct statement would be that Con needs to show how an individual, who can conceive of the concept "I exist" (premise 2), could possibly not have a worldview. Of course I have refuted an individual can not hold a worldview, hence this entire debate.
Con's defense of my 2nd attack on his 1st contention is also incorrect. First Con states truth can not be known. Then he states belief requires an acceptance of truth. The fact that I say I believe in God thereby either refutes his truth claim, or his definition of belief. I gave an alternative of relative truth to patch this logical inconsistency yet Con rejected it leaving himself in another circular argument.
To be continued!
Looking to the discussion of the existence and self awareness my opponent is failing into the abusive position of skewing the grounds of debate. He did claim that the debate applies to "all humans naturally due to us having the ability to have abstract thinking." The issue comes in when he interprets his phrase to say not "all humans", but all humans who prove to have abstract thinking premises are faulty as they exclude all marginal humans and in his opinion require communication of ideas of abstract thought which he automatically defines as beliefs. He claims "if they don't have the ability yet, or inhibited by a mental condition, to say, speak, or conceive the idea of "I exist" then they are excluded from my premises." yet we see in all my examples the individuals conceive that they exist. Infants have self preservation which would acknowledge self awareness. The same applies to the uneducated and severely mentally impaired and even a mufti personality persona who knows it is alive.
Moving to the next Pro statement he merely runs a personal attack saying I am not a seeker of truth. Then claims I provide no evidence to the concept that we can not know truths to be absolute.......theory makes it clear that there is no absolutes yet he wants me to provide evidence to prove my position true. This is not possible under skepticism other than to note what we perceive as both relatives and absolute truths have changed over time showing no constants.
Next we see a dialogue from Mr.x to Pro about atheism which Pro even said takes away from the original debate and I agreed in round 2 and claimed we strike it out. I have already made the argument that the whole dialogue is flawed as Pro is using an individual who he writes the dialogue for and give him beliefs under his own framework/premise.
Now looking to Pyrrhonism and Academic SkepticismI understand pro calls them circular and self-refuting but they are not. A skeptic is a skeptic of all things, even his own philosophy. I leave this to the voters but it seems understandable that free will allows for a person to walk between the parallels of these theory's as my prior example stated. Pro wants hard evidence or absolute truths claiming my philosophy,y which holds that there are none, is greater than his. I only needs show it possible for a human not to hold beliefs, I need not prove skepticism is the true way to think.
We must look at how the Con wins the debate as Pro argues the individual I prove to have no world views must also conceive "I exist". Let us once more look to the many examples I have given that the Pro refuses to address other than saying they fall out of his premise (obviously he would not want to include marginal humans that debunk his claim.) 1. Infants are self-aware thus they conceive they exist. 2. Those never educated work on evolutionary drives. 3. multi-personality know and can claim they exist while knowing nothing of reality and simply stating the main persona beliefs while holding none. 4. Advanced Alzheimer's patients know they are a person but asked any question of belief the could immediately forget or change the answer (did the ever really hold it?) 5.Round 2 attack on contention #3 argument where I stated those apathetic to religion use free will to have no belief or view simply by not thinking or caring about it. 6. Determinism - pro simply stated it requires a belief but never attacked the fact that environment and bio-chemicals force certain beliefs and similarly he drops indoctrination and how beliefs of other forced on to us may not be our own but merely actions and comment that would appear to favor said beliefs.
Finally to pro's last statement he states a circular argument but this proves false I do state truth can not be known under skepticism but my position is not proving skepticism it is showing under our agreed term of belief he can have his but I can show one without belief.
For this final round, I will finish my round 3 rebuttal of Con’s round 2 defense. I will then address certain key points regarding his round 3 segment, and then finish with my conclusion.
3’rd round rebuttal Part 2 of 2
Con’s defense on his 2nd contention presupposes that children, or the uneducated would not likely have a worldview. No evidence is given for this. In fact I gave contrary evidence that the uneducated are more religious than the educated. Con also talks about the involuntary actions our body does to sustain life and how it is not a belief system, rather it causes the actions and beliefs of man. Again this is another presupposition that religion (God) is not true, and in stead was just an agreement for life’s justification by an evolving man. Even still this argument does nothing to show that an abstract thinking individual would not have a worldview. As for the “brainwashed,” Con here is stating an adopted belief system is invalid because it wasn’t conceived by the individual. Or perhaps it is unless it passes this imaginary line from belief to brainwashing. Again even if this were true, it doesn’t take away the fact that the individual possesses a world view.
Con’s last defense on his 3rd contention is also false. If one were apathetic to religion they still hold a worldview. It would most likely leave one self at the center of the worldview. Self promotion and survival to all different degrees would be the most likely governing factor in this worldview.
The abstract mind:
I will show Con’s interpretation of an abstract thinking mind is incorrect. To be self-aware as an infant, or a mentally handicapped person, can demonstrate their ability to function physically in this world. However it does not mean they can conceive of themselves being apart of a larger picture consisting of their existence in a world, or the universe itself. To be self-aware does not mean abstract thinking. Being self-aware by showing the ability to function to sustain life is not the same as having abstract thought. The ability to ponder the question: “do I exist, and if so why do I exist,” and other metaphysical issues is the ability of a mind capable of abstract thought. So yes, infants and the severely mentally handicapped are excluded from my premises. I think this is also taking away from the obvious intent of the debate, but since I didn’t make it clear I will defend it.
From what I am understanding is that Con states that an absolute truth is possible, however remaining a skeptic might continually unfold a newer truth. As an analogy one who is counting to infinity admits that infinity does exist, but will always be counting without ever reaching it. I understand this, however when it pertains to a worldview it only shows one will have a worldview until he finds a more true worldview to replace the prior.
Conclusion and Thanks
In this debate I have demonstrated to the best of my ability that an individual, capable of conceiving the concept “I exist,” has a worldview. I have demonstrated that stating “I don’t believe in any worldview” does not subtract from the reality that one actually has a worldview, rather is an attempt to remove a label. I have shown that an absolute truth is not necessary to have a belief, that relative truths can sustain a belief and create a worldview. I have shown how a committed skeptic who believes in always maintaining there is no absolute truth in search of a higher truth still maintains a worldview, even though the skeptic is willing to abandon it for a new one when a more plausible reality is presented.
In conclusion I state that since my 2 premises are true, the conclusion is true.
I want to state in no way did I mean anything to be taken as personal attacks as I’m a firm believer in intellectual debate minus emotion.
Thank you for reading and voting on this debate. Thanks to AgencyOfMan for being such a well rounded debater in manner and tact.
To conclude I will cover Pro's statements then end with the reasons that the Con has proved it possible for one to possess no worldview. When looking to Pro's final rebuttal let us pull apart the fallacies line by line. Pro addresses uneducated children and states they are more religious but that evidence is truly linked to the African tribe arguments I already said I predefined and dropped. If a child never was taught or heard of any religion could he have any belief of religion? Obviously not. The cases I explained where children with zero education, how could they from beliefs on anything?. Now we look to determinism and his only argument is that I suppose no god exist, but why should we suppose a god does? (The answer = our own beliefs, which as I have said does not force the belief formation of others) Link this to my above stated evidence that in uneducated children there would be no religion.
Pro key points
The abstract mind : the con gave multiple examples that the pro attempted to shoot down but I leave it up to the voter if the infants, uneducated children, or mentally retarded should be involved. Even if it is decided by readers they are not let us look to two examples the Pro never said a thing about thus they stand as examples of people with no beliefs. We look to Alzheimer patients who recognize their existence but can not hold and continuous beliefs. More importantly I cited and example in three rounds which was that of multi-personality persona's who know they exist, ponder their existence but share no personal beliefs. Pro simply ignores these points and claims I have no evidence.
The Skeptic and apathy:
Here Pro ignores the concept that allows any belief which is at root free will. One could simply never care or think of religion. You can not have a belief in something you have never put any thought toward and the argument Pro places all include the phrase"most likely". Pro is obviously upholding his opinion so why should his belief or opinion of what would most likely occur be accepted as having merit.
Similarly does a human not possess the free will to walk between the parallels of the 2 skeptic philosophies? Pro wants me to prove why someone would but that is a misplaced burden. I need only prove as pro even said "Con needs to show how an individual, who can conceive of the concept "I exist" (premise 2), could possibly not have a worldview". Read carefully, how one COULD possibly. Not why one would or what proves one would. Just that it is possible and in my prior rounds and last paragraph I even gave an example (once by name , Sybil's personalities).
So let us wrap up this debate by flying by all the key reasons the Con side should be called home.
How Con wins:"Con needs to show how an individual, who can conceive of the concept "I exist" (premise 2), could possibly not have a worldview".
Examples that Con has presented: 1. Uneducated children: This point proves no beliefs can stem out of a lack of knowledge. 2. Mentally handicapped: this simply called upon the question of marginal humans. Pro demands that only humans thinking abstractly should be counted and I would agree to how he defines abstract except he asks for proof. Proof in his opinion comes from communication but that always leads to what he claims to be a belief.
Examples that Pro never addressed: We look to Alzheimer patients who recognize their existence but can not hold and continuous beliefs. More importantly was that of multi-personality persona's who know they exist, ponder their existence but share no personal beliefs. Pro simply ignores these points and ignores the concepts of free will.
Simply put, to sum up all the words. We must answer Does everybody have a worldview? If you have read what I typed, if you read the examples,skepticism,determinism,freewill, and more does it not add up to one soul that has no beliefs? It does and must.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by NewCreature 5 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: The debate is won when Con agreed to the debate. Every one of his positions was a worldview that comprised his worldview.
Vote Placed by CosmicAlfonzo 5 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con's position wasn't really that convincing to me. It seems that in this debate, a worldview could be as simple as a "belief". Even if you take the position of the extreme skeptic, you still believe in something, even if you can not know it. A solipsist even believes in something. Though the beliefs of the mentally handicapped may yield very inconsistent beliefs and even changing beliefs, they still have beliefs. Even those who place their faith in others have beliefs.
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