The Instigator
Pro (for)
23 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
13 Points

God most likely exists

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 11 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/12/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 15,181 times Debate No: 52319
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (251)
Votes (11)




Good evening/afternoon/morning/midday, ladies and gentlemen. Sswdwm and I don't always see eye-to-eye on issues, and after having many enjoyable forum debates, we've decided to take it to the real thing. The resolution for this debate shall be...

God most likely exists.

I shall argue in favor of the resolution, and provide argumentation that God most likely exists. I shall carry the burden to prove the truth of the above statement. My opponent shall have the burden to cast a reasonable amount of doubt upon the soundness of my arguments.

God shall be defined as "The mind which grounds reality." So I'm not going to be arguing that there is an all-loving God, and that Jesus is God, and we must accept the Bible or burn in hell for all eternity. This is a philosophy debate, not a theology one. Rather, I shall argue that there is an intelligence behind reality.

Round 1 is for acceptence and any other pleasantries Sswdwm would like to exchange before we get to the nitty-gritty.
Round 2 is for me to make my case, and my opponent to provide rebuttals.
Round 3 is for rebuttals.
Round 4 is for rebuttals and conclusions. Also, no completely new arguments in this round. This means that I can't suddenly bring up a completely new argument for the existence of God, and that my opponent can't suddenly bring up a completely new rebuttal against my arguments.

I think that's about it... Standard rules apply. No yelling and semanticizing opposing arguments and such nonsense. Not that I expect that from my opponent though. :) Also, please vote as fairly as possible.

Thank you, and I look forward to an enjoyable debate!


Thanks for making the offer Pro. I look forward to our oncoming debate.

To fulfil my burden of a compulsory informal pleasentry I will state the following:
1. Pro has a nicer usename than me.
2. I quietly screamed "Yes!" when I recieved the challenge offer.

With that aside, I will be supporting the negation of this resolution. To clarify this will not necessarily and is unlikely to be the anti-thesis to Pro's position. Instead I will show that Pro's position is unconvincing.

Best regards, and best of luck! Over to Pro!
Debate Round No. 1


In the course of this debate, I shall defend the existence of a cosmic mind which grounds reality. The premises might seem readily acceptable, however the conclusion will be counter-intuitive to many. Please do not let this affect your consideration of the argument.

I shall summarize the argument, and then get into defending the premises. Please note that when I speak of “mental” I mean something which is contrasted to mindless physical matter in the philosophical sense. So we could read P1 as the logical obverse, "No mind is non-mental" [1] which basically states that mind isn’t reducible to something like mind-less physical matter.

P1 Mind is mental
P2 Nothing mental can interact with what is non-mental
C1 Nothing mind interacts with is non-mental
P3 Mind interacts with reality
C2 Reality is mental

I. P1. Mind is not matter.
Off the top of my head, I can think of about ten different arguments to defend this premise. But for now I shall stick to one which I think is very convincing and will save the most room.

P1: IF mind is matter, THEN solipsism is impossible (exists in no possible worlds).
P2: Solipsism is possible (does exist in some possible world).
C: Mind is not matter.

Metaphysical solipsism is the position that all that exists is your mind [2]. You might think there’s a real world out there, but in reality, that’s all an illusion.

We also might substitute Descartes’ evil genius simulating the world around us [3].

So is there a possible world where all that exists is minds?

There are good reasons to believe this.

(i) This seems perfectly possible. There are no explicit contradictions in it. It certainly isn’t prima facie impossible. So we should accept it as a logically coherent possibility.
(ii) It’s quite conceivable.

If mind were made up of matter, it would be utterly impossible for it exist apart from matter. It's like saying “It’s possible for this pen made out of plastic to exist when plastic does not exist.” That’s absurd.

Secondly, metaphysical impossibilities aren't even conceivable. Can you conceive of a square triangle? Or the part being greater than the whole? No. Because they're metaphysical impossibilities, which are incoherent in themselves. Consequently, if something is conceivable, it must be at least metaphysically possible. There's a "thing" there for us to understand and conceive, unlike impossibilities.

Now please do not confuse metaphysical possibility with physical possibility. See the diagram below...

So when I say that it is metaphysically possible, all I'm saying is that it's logically coherent, and could be the case in a possible world.

So metaphysical solipsism seems at least metaphysically possible.

Now P1 is much easier. It's just an application of Leibniz's law [4]. If the mind were some sort of physical or mindless substance, then this mindless something would have the same properties as the mind. But importantly, this includes modanic properties; properties of possibility.

To illustrate…

Thing 1 Thing 2
XYZ qualities XYZ qualities
Exists in possible world A Exist in possible world A
Exists in possible world B Does not exist in possible world B

Since these two things have different modanic properties, they can’t be the same thing.

The reason I think this argument is so strong is because it goes much deeper. Recall, that in order for the argument to succeed, I must just show that it is logically coherent for there to be a world in which only your mind exists, and matter does not exist. But wait! It might be the case that this world is a solipsistic one. So solipsism is not just a far off abstract possibility; it's a very real and immediate one.

Make sure you understand this argument before proceeding.

II. P2. Seperate substances cannot interact.
I shall now debunk substance dualism and property dualism.

1. Substance dualism.
Substance dualists hold that there are two completely different types of "stuff." [5] There's "mind stuff" and there's "physical stuff." But if mind isn't physical, how can it interact with matter as it obviously does? Does the mind put an electric charge into the brain? Does the brain affect the mind in the same way? In other words, interaction would have to come about through a common property which both mind and matter share. Some bridge which gaps between mind and matter.

See the diagram below:

But there's a problem here. Because separate substances, by definition, do not share any properties. If they did, they wouldn't be separate substances to begin with.

So the notion of there being two completely different substances which somehow cause each other is incoherent. But the mind most certainly does interact with reality! Thus, there can't be two separate substances.

2. Property dualism.
"Alright," you might say, "but affecting the brain affects the mind. So maybe the mind isn't a separate substance, but is a property of the brain."

This is property dualism. It holds that there is one type of substance, "matter", but that matter has physical properties as well as mental properties. And mental properties is where the mind is.

See the diagram below:

Now this leads to major problems of epiphenomenalism and no free will, which I'll probably get into in later rounds.

But besides having highly counter-intuitive problems, property dualism gets even worse.

Let's take an example of a property. Let's say, "a ten pound rabbit." Now the property "10 lbs" is said of "rabbit." By itself, "10 lbs" isn't even a thing. Have you ever gone outside and seen a "10 lb"..... a 10 lb what exactly? Oh yknow, just a 10 lb.

As you can see, properties are abstractions of a substance. By themselves, they're not really a thing. In fact, it's entirely impossible for them to exist by themselves, since they're abstractions! They exist only inasmuch as the substance they are a property of exists. Properties aren't things. They're properties of things.

But remember the solipsism argument. We saw that it's perfectly possible (metaphysically) for the mind to exist by itself. There's nothing incoherent about that. If the mind were just a property like "10 lb" we wouldn't be able to coherently describe it as a thing in itself. However, we surely can. Thus, the mind cannot just be a property like "red" or "10 lb."

There is also the huge problem of free will, which I touched on above. So property dualism is epistemic suicide, highly counter-intuitive, and even just plain impossible.

Sounds like a defeater to me.

III. P3. Mind interacts with reality.

Now as we've seen, mind is fundamental. I've shown that it's fundamental ontologically, as well as epistemically.

But mind obviously does interact with the reality we experience If I stub my toe, it hurts. I feel the pain. My mind has been affected. I can also make choices. This seems self-evident. Mind affects reality, and reality affects mind.

IV. Explanatory power
Now I've given good arguments to believe in idealism (all is mind), but it also has a huge ability to explain things.

Any science is compatible with idealism. To bring up science is a futile task, since it's perfectly compatible with idealism. Furthermore, idealism can explain how mind and reality interact both ways. It can also explain the existence of the mind, something materialism has an immense difficulty doing, as shown in Chalmer's Hard Problem [6].

V. Occam's Razor.
Technically, Occam's razor is only supposed to be applied when competing hypotheses have equal explanatory power, but I'll put this out there anyways. Idealism is highly favored by Occam's razor. It doesn't make the assumption of two separate substances, like dualism, but it also doesn't make the assumption that mind is identical to some neurons firing in my brain.

As Sam Harris says

"There is nothing about introspection that leads you to sense that your subjectivity is at all dependent or even related to voltage changes and chemical reactions going on inside your head. You can drop acid, you can meditate for a no you get a glimpse that there is a hundred trillion neurons in your head." [7]

Theism follows from this form of idealism. Remember that the conclusion follows necessarily; reality is mental. Now since reality is mental, and is independent of our minds, there must be another mind to ground it. True, it might be the case that reality is projected by our subconsciousness, and solipsism is true, but even then, God would exist... in other words, God, defined in this debate as the mind that grounds reality would still be there. I would be God. Of course, I don't think this is the case, since the world seems to go on regardless of me, but fleeing to the mysterious embrace of solipsism won't help my opponent any.

Remember when I said up there that the premises might be easy to defend, but the conclusion would seem counter-intuitive? Well now I think you see what I mean. Remember, the conclusion follows with necessity. If the premises are true, we cannot escape it; the conclusion must also be true. It might be a tough pill to swallow, but if it's true, all we can do is gulp.

Thus, I have shown that it is most likely the case that reality is mental, and as such, there is a God, a mind which grounds reality.

Thank you.




Thanks Pro for that powerful opening statement.


Pro has argued against mualism and materialism, for this round I will concede dualism and concentrate on defending materialism. I don’t intend to argue for it, only to maintain is as a possibility, which is enough to demonstrate Pro’s argumentation unsound.

The Conclusion:

The part Pro actually argues for God I found to be remarkably weak, I will attempt to formulate it as follows:

P1. Everything in reality is mental

P2. ??

C. Reality requires a mind to ground it.

The reason why I bring this up is because later on, ‘mental’ only refers to a ‘same-stuff-as-mind’ reality. I freely grant this latter proposition, that everything in reality is the same stuff of mind, but I see no reason why a mind is required to ground it. Without the missing P2, this quickly becomes a simple argument ad ignorantum. I’m sure Pro will be happy to provide the argumentation for this in the next round.

Furthermore this does not distinguish between ‘major’ and ‘minor’ mental realities, the ‘major’ mental reality could be anything, from a mind (God), to a CPU simulating everything, which itself is bound by it’s own ‘physical’ universe. To this effect, the above argumentation is also a fallacy of composition, where Pro asserts the ‘parts’ of the universe (mental) represent the whole.

‘The bit where Pro attacks materialism…’:

Of course, a materialist’s main beef is going to be with the solloisistic argument.

P1: IF mind is matter, THEN solipsism is impossible (exists in no possible worlds).
P2: Solipsism is possible (does exist in some possible world).
C: Mind is not matter.

However this argument is missing a number of assumed premises and presuppositions which are filled in as follows (and made more user friendly)

P1. If mind is matter, in a material universe, then solipsism is impossible

P2. Solipsism is a metaphysically possible explanation for the universe

C. Mind is not matter in any metaphysically possible universe

When you fill in the additional presuppositions, it’s clear the argument is no longer logically valid. And the following white flags are raised:

  1. 1. Is solipsism actually a metaphysically possible universe?
  2. 2. It doesn’t address that a physical mind is impossible in an immaterial universe.
  3. 3. The actual conclusion from this could be: C1. Mind can exist in a mental universe.

But what form of mind? This requires an additional premise:

P4. Material ‘stuff’ cannot exist in a mental universe

C2. Mind is immaterial

Which has seen poor support within Pro’s opening argumentation.


Where I will agree with Pro, is that solipsism is likely a logical possibility, but I do not accept that it’s a metaphysical possibility. A logical possibility goes into the same bag as Goldberg’s Conjecture, which may or may not be true, but if true will be true in all universes. Similarly for immaterial minds, it is a logical possibility that mind (and everything else) is purely immaterial, but does not fall into the category of metaphysical possibility.

The only demonstration we have seen from Pro of metaphysical possibility is just that it’s conceivable. I see absolutely no reason to accept this to be the case. Pro may argue for a category error, but then let’s go to a more ambiguous example:


I will leave the issues of epiphenomenalism and free will to the next round, at first glance I don’t see the issue, as clearly if mind is itself a complex array of physical processes, akin to the perspective of a next-generation working computer, then it follows that anything that affects those physical processes will share properties of the physical stuff the ‘mind’ is made from, which yields no contradiction with physical minds. Furthermore the implication from this is there is essentially no free will.

Explanatory Power & Occums Razor:

In an idealist universe, everything is mental. That being then case, if you are perceiving a cup of tea in front of you, if they cup of tea still there when you are no longer perceiving it? This is trivially explained in a materialistic universe, but requires an additional assumption in an idealist one, namely that’s being sustained/constantly perceived by something else/the grounding mind, which in this case is God.

In other words, materialism, another variant of monism, does not suffer any more from Occum’s Razor assumption than idealism does.

Where Materialism does better:

The ‘common sense’ argument I will throw out here, because I think it does at least give an inductive argument for materialism over idealism.
1. In materialism, mind necessarily depends on matter, and any effect on the matter the mind is constituted of, must have an effect
2. In idealism [1] mind is not necessarily dependant of matter

In this physical universe, we find the predictions of [1] to be trivially true. It is true it is compatable with idealism, but is more precisely empirically explained by materialism and is therefore a better theory.

Another area where materialism does a much better job of explaining reality than idealism are optical illusions:

If reality were purely mental, or even solipsistic, then this above example and many others are poorly explained by an idealistic universe. If everything is mental, then everything is just a perception, that being the case why should they change due to second order factors, like shadows? This is trivially explainable by assuming the mind is material, and it’s conceptions are purely a model of the reality it perceives (which is not dependant of the mind).


I look forward to Pro filling in the white flags I have raised in this rebuttal.

Debate Round No. 2


Thanks for the excellent rebuttal.

Remember that my argument is

P1 Mind is mental
P2 Nothing mental can interact with what is non-mental
C1 Nothing mind interacts with is non-mental
P3 Mind interacts with reality
C2 Reality is mental

As I expected, my opponent has attacked only P1. Remember, that if I can defend P1, the conclusion follows necessarily and inescapably.

My opponent claims that even if the above argument is true, it doesn’t prove God. Let me explain.

Materialism argues that there is only one type of substance, and that this type of substance is physical stuff. The mind, therefore, is reducible to physical matter.

Idealism, on the other hand, states that there is only one type of substance, but this substance is “mental”. Mind is not irreducible to physical matter for the idealist, but physical matter is reducible to mind.

Let’s say you’re baking a cake. You take ingredients and mix them up, put it in the oven, and out comes the cake. The materialist says that these ingredients you made the cake out of are physical in nature. The idealist says that these irreducibly ingredients are mental in nature.

So if I can show that the mind is irreducible, then I have shown that “mind stuff” is the basic ingredient.

P1: Whatever is mental is either (i) a mind or (ii) caused by a mind.
P2: Reality is mental
C: Reality is either a (i) mind, or (ii) caused by a mind.

For the sake of this debate, either option will do, since in either case, there’s a mind behind reality.

My opponent also objects that reality could be caused by a CPU which is physical and not mental. But once again, this doesn’t work, since the interaction between this CPU and our minds would be impossible as I have shown.

My opponent, as you will recall, is arguing for materialism. This means that he is not arguing that physical matter has other “mental” properties, but rather that our minds are, in some way or another, the same thing as physical matter. To put this in philosophy terms, he is arguing for a reductionist form of the mind, not an emergent one. He’s not saying that if you mix up certain physical parts then poof! Out comes a non-physical mind. He’s saying that the mind just is physical.

He also argues that materialism makes sense of the world better than idealism, and gives examples of the mind’s dependency on the brain, and optical illusions. He claims that materialism makes more sense of the necessary connection between brain and mind. But who is to say that there is a necessary connection between brain and mind? He surely hasn’t shown this. In our world, yes, there is a connection between the two. But is this the case in all worlds, which is what it means for something to be “necessary”? We haven’t been given any reasons to think this. Remember the diagram above? Well I’ll admit there is a relationship between mind/matter in our physical world, but not necessarily in all metaphysical situations.

In regards to optical illusions, he is also mistaken. Idealism doesn’t say that science needs to change how it functions. All it says is that the philosophical presuppositions science assumes need to change. So under idealism, there are still atoms, quantum particles, black holes, etc. The difference though, is that materialism says these things are, in their philosophical nature, physical. Idealism says that in their nature, they are mental. So science works exactly the same on idealism as it does on materialism. The difference between the two is the ontological nature of reality.

My opponent also says that materialism is favored by Occam’s razor. Under materialism we don’t need God, but under idealism we do. So materialism makes less assumptions, right? Once again, this is assuming that idealism and materialism are on equal footing as far as explanatory power goes (which they’re not, as I’ve shown) and that reality can go on without a mind. I am intending to show that it cannot. So if my argument succeeds, this is completely irrelevant. Occam’s razor might favor the position that there’s no black holes, since that is an unnecessary assumption, but we have evidence that they exist, and positing black holes explains things much better.

And remember, the only part of my argument Con has disagreed with is the premise that mind is irreducible to matter. The heart and soul of this entire debate rests upon that one premise.

Consequences of materialism
My opponent argues that if materialism is true, then we don’t have any free will, and that's just the way it is.

The problem is that we most definitely do experience something like free will. Free-will seems obviously true. Sure, it might end up being false, but we do experience at least the illusion of it. Materialism needs to explain why we experience such an incredibly strong illusion of something that doesn’t exist, and it has a lot of trouble doing so. But idealism can easily explain why we think there is free will. Because we have it!

So I shall argue that there are numerous reasons to believe that the mind is immaterial, and it able to explain things, such as free will and the self. Materialism fails on both accounts.

Defending P1
Let’s get into the main part of the disagreement. Strap on your seatbelts because this might be a bumpy ride.

Dissimilarities of mind and matter
Suppose you had never before seen or even heard of a rabbit. Suppose you also had never seen or heard of chewing tobacco. Now suppose I showed you a picture of both.

"Now" I ask you, "how do you know that these aren’t the same thing?"

You laugh at first, but then realize I am completely serious.

"How do you know?" I repeat.

"THAT" you point at the rabbit "is a small fuzzy cute animal. But THAT is a paper package filled with black shredded stuff."

I still insist "But how does that mean they're different things? They still might be the same thing for all we know."

At this point, I think most people would be frustrated and flabbergasted. They'd probably throw up their hands and say "Look, dude, they're completely dissimilar. They're just completely different types of things."

And you would be perfectly justified in making that inference. If I wanted you to believe otherwise, I should show you that a rabbit and chew are actually the same.

What is physical matter, the brain, composed of? Grey tissue. Neuron firing. Stimulation of C-fibers. Shifting in voltage. Chemicals releasing.

But what is "mind"? The self. Sensations. What something feels like. Beliefs. Desires. Thoughts.

Let me put it this way. How much does my belief that "it is raining today" weigh? How many centimeters "long" is the self?

Since we are justified in making the inference that a rabbit and a pouch of chew are not the same thing, we are also justified in making the inference that neural patterns and what I feel when I step on a lego are different things.

If the rabbit and the chew were the same things, then when we look at the picture of the rabbit, we’re also looking at the chew. But if the mind is the same as the physical matter of the brain, then every time I introspect, or look inside myself, I am looking at neurons.

We can identify the rabbit as much as we like, and we will never be aware of the pouch of tobacco. The thought will never enter our heads. This makes absolutely no sense if they’re the same things.

But we can do the same with the mind! We can understand everything there is to know about neuron firing patterns, but this won't tell us what something actually smells like to that person. So if the C-fiber stimulation and the pain I feel when I step on a lego were the exact same thing then they wouldn't be such completely dissimilar things. But you could scan my brain however many times you like, identify neurons, but you will never “feel” my pain.

In other words, mind is inherently first-person, while matter is inherently third-person. They’re completely dissimilar.

My opponent isn’t comparing apples to oranges.

He’s saying apples just are oranges.

My opponent claims that solipsism might be metaphysically possible, but we don’t know for sure. He compares it to Goldberg’s Conjecture. Since we can’t know whether or not Goldberg’s Conjecture is metaphysically possible, we can’t know that solipsism is metaphysically possible as well.

But there’s a problem here. Unlike in Goldberg’s Conjecture, we can analyze the properties of physical matter, and the properties of the mind, as we have done above. We can compare the two, and see that they are actually quite different in their nature. Thus, we can conclude that it’s perfectly metaphysically possible for the mental states to exist apart from the brain states, and it’s also perfectly conceivable.

Contrast this to Goldberg’s Conjecture. In the case of Goldberg’s Conjecture, we cannot yet analyze the properties of an infinite amount of numbers. We just don't know. This is a very obscure and complicated example and should not be compared to the obvious example of the mind.

So my opponent’s analogy does not hold. In the case of solipsism, we can easily examine mind and easily examine the properties of physical matter. This is not the case with Goldberg’s Conjecture. To compare the mind, which is what we know most immediately (in fact, all we ever know) to an infinite amount of numbers which the greatest mathematicians cannot find an answer to is not a valid analogy at all.

He also asks how I know this is conceivable? Well how do we know it is conceivable that the rabbit might exist while the chew doesn’t? Because they’re completely different things.

My opponent also argues that my argument is invalid. However, this is a modus tollens argument which is perfectly valid.

P1 IF mind is matter, THEN there is no possible world in which solipsism is the case.
P2 There is a possible world in which solipsism is the case.
C Mind is not matter.

As I have defended P2, which my opponent has attacked, the argument remains.

Thus, we have seen good reasons to believe that the mind is immaterial. Unless, of course, my opponent can give us arguments to think otherwise.

The resolution remains affirmed.


Thanks Con,


In retrospect it might have been wiser to attack more points than my opponent’s dismissal of materialism & reducibility of mind to ‘physical stuff’, but I will stick to my guns for the remainder of this debate, first and foremost because holding this at least as an equally valid explanation invalidates my opponent’s argument for idealism, and secondly because this is my own position.


The core assumption of materialism against idealism is that mind is necessarily reducible to physical brain states. I’d sooner add some word salad to Pro’s description of the mind, as it’s a result of the brain and the physical processes the brain undergoes (which themselves may be fully reducible but our science doesn’t go that far). It seems Pro does not accept this assertion, which is surprising since the core contention I originally thought was what the ‘stuff’ the brain is made of actually is. Is this stuff itself ‘mental stuff’ or ‘physical stuff’?

Note that when I refer to ‘physical stuff’, I simply mean ‘non-mental stuff’, therefore any argument made by my opponent into burdening me with the problem of a priori or a posterori knowledge of the ‘stuff’ is irrelevant, I only need to demonstrate that asserting it is a mind is unsound.

Free Will:

I will be the first to say, if free will was demonstrated to be absolutely true then materialism would be false. Materialism directly implies that our decisions, emotions, and perceptions are purely physical manifestations, and while the brain

It is true we ‘seem’ to experience free will, indeed we ‘seem’ to experience many things. Our mind is excellent at deceiving itself. For example, you are reading this text, think to yourself ‘how much of what I see is in focus?’. The truth is only a tiny fraction of your visual field is actually in focus, and the peripheral . Another example the blind spot we have in our eyes. It’s rather significant, roughly ten times the size of the full moon (!), but we never perceive this definitive hole in our vision.

This of course doesn’t prove free will doesn’t exist, it does prove that Pro’s appeal to our intuition regarding the brain itself is a disaster waiting to happen, however. Furthermore we are quite capable of manipulating people’s emotions today with various neurostimulants (marijuana, cocaine, etc) which affect their decisions. This also doesn’t disprove free will, but it’s a direct prediction of what would be the case if it was not true, more than enough to hold this conclusion questionable.

Materialism’s Explanatory Power:

In materialism this has the direct prediction (and potential falsification) that anything that affects the physical nature of the interactions that occur within the brain, short circuiting, neurotics, damage, etc will inevitably have an effect on the perception of consciousness. Of course this holds absolutely true in the universe we currently live in. This of course does not falsify idealism as I already explained last round, but it does mean that materialism is a better, pragmatic, explanation.

Arguments against Idealism:

My opponent made the following concession:

But who is to say that there is a necessary connection between brain and mind? He surely hasn’t shown this. In our world, yes, there is a connection between the two.

Obviously I am not going to be able to conclusively show that various physical states that represent our exact ‘experiences’. A more compelling demonstration that our mental states are directly representable as physical states is in the following TED talk[3], with astonishing demonstrations that we can in principle, even see the images produced by the brain. What more of a demonstration would Pro require to show that mind is fully dependant of the brain?

Pro’s Argument for God:

Given that we have evidence demonstrating the mind’s dependence of matter, and the occum’s razor favoured explanation that mind is reducible to states of matter, we can conclude that materialism is a reasonable, self-contained explanation for reality.

Our universe in the context of Pro’s Idealism (warning, possible strawman) however, from what I have presented above, if idealism is true then the best explanation favoured by occum’s razor is that human consciousness is manifest from the ‘mental matter’ our universe appears to be made of. And this ‘mental matter’ are the perceptions of Pro’s proposal god.

This, plainly, requires an additional entity to materialism. The reason being I have already explained, the unperceived things we can assume to still exist in some form. The tree that falls in the forest when nobody is looking does make a sound. This seems to necessitate a ‘perceiver’, or God.

Therefore Pro’s argument that reality is a mind becomes a necessary one to explain some stuff, and therefore becomes a required assumption.

Logical Possibility/Conceivability/Metaphysical Possibility:

This is the crux of the argument, is solipsism metaphysically possible or not? I have given a few examples of conceptions that are logically impossible, and possible truths that could be logically impossible.

This alone dispels the notion that what is logically possible is not necessarily metaphysically possible, especially the ‘impossible shapes’ I have given. It is conceivable that logically impossible things could occur, therefore by Pro’s current line of reasoning that which is conceivable is metaphysically possible.

However, it’s clear this line of argumentation isn’t even valid how it’s been presented so far, which appears to be as follows:

Everything that is metaphysically possible is logically possible and conceivable

  1. 1. Sollopsism is logically possible
  2. 2. Sollopsism is conceivable

C. Sollopsism is metaphysically possible.

This however, obviously, is not a valid argument. ‘All Irishman are called Jim, Person A is called Jim, Jim is an irishman’ is also obviously invalid, as this Jim could be from somewhere other than Ireland, and I have already illustrated this with the Venn Diagram below.

I see no reason to conclude that Pro demonsttrates what he's attmepting to demonstrate with hsi current line of reasoning.

Attempted reducto ad absurdum:

Let me attempt to represent/strawman the overview of my opponent’s fuzzy rabbit/tobacco argument argument.

1. Experiences/sensations cannot currently be described with physical terms

2. Physical things are describable in physical terms

C. Experiences are not physical

However, this argument is invalid, and requires premise 1 to map onto the following premise:
1ii. Experiences/sensations are not describable with physical terms

Which quite obviously, an argument ad ignorantum, and really says nothing more than ‘I cannot imagine how they could be described in physical terms, therefore it’s not physical’. That is not me asserting that itis physical (although I do hold that position).

Let me give another example we have a better grasp on. The internet is an ever-flowing web of information, pictures, documents, movies etc are always in motion at any one time along the channels. What’s more, we actually know how much the ‘internet’ weighs. Since the internet is trivially reducable to the mass of elections and energy of photons within the system, we can calculate the internet weighs ~50 grams.

Of course the internet is not conscious, but it’s probably our closest example to it, and therefore the physical representation of it should be taken seriously.

‘Same stuff’:

I really don’t see what my opponent’s argument attempts to prove, as this seems to be a trivial reverse-fallacy of composition (the whole doesn’t necessarily need to be made of those specific parts), I presume this is some form of an explanatory gap argument.


I hold that P2 is unsound, and doesn’t provide much explanatory power at all, in fact the explanatory power of materialism is much more in line with current observations, therefore we almost have a positive case for conclusing P2, and therefore the entire resolution false.

Back to Pro for the final round!





Debate Round No. 3


I'd like to whole-heartedly thank Sswdwm for suggesting this debate and for doing such a great job in it. Give him a round of applause for not being as long winded as me! Best of luck to him in the voting!

My opponent drops my arguments for God. So if I can show that reality is mental, then God's existence follows necessarily. (Since of course, mind is fundamental, and can't interact with non-mind, reality must be mental).

Materialism, free will, and explanatory power
My opponent wants some clarification on the mind and brain in idealism. Now there's many different versions which could work for this. We could argue that the brain is mental in nature, or that the mind is self-collapsing wave functions, etc. However, I'd rather argue that the mind and the brain are two different things. Not different types of things, but still different things. And affecting one affects the other, since there's a connection between the two. In other words, we are "embodied" minds. Under idealism, disembodied minds, such as God or angels are also perfectly possible.

So the brain affects the mind, and the mind affects the brain. However, the brain has more of an impact on the brain than the mind. We have to really focus our minds on something to break bad habits, and it's much easier for the brain to affect the mind through hormones and drugs, than it is for the mind to control the brain.

My opponent also admits that if free will is true, materialism is false. The reason is that there just is no place for free will if everything is physical. Whatever is physical is either random or causally determined. There's no "free agents" in physicalism. For materialists, free will can't exist.

Now I've asked my opponent: If free will can't exist why is there such a huge illusion of it. He's given examples of times when we think there's something there, but it's not. Well yes, I've admitted that free-will could be an illusion, but if free-will is an illusion, my opponent needs to show how.

Either free-will is metaphysically possible or it is not. If it's metaphysically possible, it's the best explanation for what we experience and materialism is false. If it's metaphysically impossible, my opponent needs to show how we can be under the illusion that there exists something which is completely impossible in principle.

I also don't understand my opponent's examples of "impossible shapes." The example he gives isn't an impossible shape. It just looks like it. But under further examination, we can see that it's not really an impossible shape, just that is looks very similar to one

Now onto explanatory power. There's..

(i) Good reasons to believe that idealism is true.
(ii) It makes sense of free-will and the idea of mind being first person and matter third perso

But on materialism...

(i) Absolutely no good reasons to believe it.
(ii) Can't explain free will (the illusion thereof) and can't explain how there can be "first-person" (a property that physical matter just doesn't have).

Arguments against idealism
My opponent references a TED talk, but all the talk states is that there's an intimate relationship between mind and brain. That affecting the brain affects the mind. But this doesn't show that the mind just IS the brain.

My opponent is affirming the antecedent it seems... (Correct me if I'm wrong)

P1: IF mind is matter, THEN there would be an intimate relationship between the two.
P2: There is an intimate relationship between the two
C: Mind is matter.

But this is invalid. If he formulated it

P1: If there is an intimate relationship between mind and matter, THEN mind is matter.
P2: There is a relationship.
C: Mind is matter

I'd see absolutely no reason to accept P1 as true.

Under one formulation, his argument is invalid. Under the other, the premises aren't shown to be true. Both are unsound.

Furthermore, they need a monitor to show the images that they interpret from the information in the brain. This just goes to show that the images and the information in the brain aren't the exact same thing.

From the talk...
"They've been able to decode brainwaves into recognizable visual fields"

Well this doesn't work. Because if the brainwaves just are visual images, we shouldn't need to "decode" them.

Occam's razor
Yes, idealism posits an extra entity, God, to ground reality since this is needed in principle. But, as I've argued many times, there are good reasons to think that we need this entity, and the idealistic worldview makes more explanatory sense of the world.

So Occam's razor shouldn't be applied.

Bunnies and chew
Now this argument didn't merit much response from my opponent, but let me try to be more succinct. I'm not sure how to put analogous reasoning into proper logical form, so bear with me.

P1. The bunny/chew comparison is structurally the same as the mind/brain comparison.
P2. We are perfectly justified in inferring that the bunny is not the chew, even if they are causally related.
Therefore, we are justified in inferring that the mind is not the brain.

Now I've defended both of these. So my opponent needs to show (i) that the analogy does not hold, or (ii) the analogy does hold, but we cannot infer that the bunny is not the chewing tobacco.

Let's push the analogy further.

Suppose every time that the bunny hops forwards, the pouch of chew gets bigger. When the rabbit turns, the pouch of chew rotates. This happens, every. single. time.

Now we can look at the rabbit, and see what it's doing, and then (presumably) infer what the chew is doing.
Let's say that there is such a close relationship between the two, that someone even gives a talk at TED that we can monitor the bunny's activity and then find out what is happening to the chew!

We'd probably still say (or we should), "Just because they're somehow causally related, this does't mean they're the same thing."
Which is what I'm saying here. Just because two things are extremely related, this proves absolutely nothing. Nil. Nadda. All it shows is that two completely different types of things are somehow related to each other.

And once again, my opponent is not arguing that the mind is a property of the brain, but that the mind just is the brain.

So this argument holds.

His internet analogy is also flawed. What does he mean by "the internet"? Does he mean the mental sensations I have when I look at my computer screen? Or does he mean the physical energy of the electricity? He's equivocating the mental images and sensations I have when I'm on my computer with electricity, which is exactly what we're arguing about.

This is essentially the old "Well, if you didn't know water was H20, you'd think they were different things!" argument. But, as I've shown above, and as atheist philosopher Thomas Nagel points out, this rests on equivocation.

"We ordinarily identify water by its perceptible qualities qualities, but our perceptual experiences aren't part of the water; they are just effects it has on our senses. The intrinsic properties of water, its density, electrical conductivity, index of refraction, liquidity between 0 and 100 degrees centigrade, etc., are all fully explained by H20 and its properties. The physical properties of H20 are by themselves sufficient for water." [1]

Also, as mentioned earlier...
P1: IF mind is matter, then when we introspect we are examining neurons (doing neuro-science)
P2: We aren't doing neuro-science every time we introspect.
C: Mind is not matter.

Due to my opponent's passing over of my above argument, I don't think his objections to my solipsism argument work. He's also dropped his Goldbach's Conjecture example.

Let's put it this way. Either solipsism is metaphysically possible, or it's not. If it's metaphysically impossible, then this is either explicitly so, or implicitly so.

It's obviously not explicitly contradictory.

Also, given the dissimilar nature of mind and matter, as argued above, it's most likely not implicitly contradictory.

Therefore, it's metaphysically possible.

My opponent's diagram is also wrong. There is a section where some things are conceivable and metaphysically impossible.
If something is impossible, it means it's a "non-thing". Our minds only grasp and perceive actual things. This is simple apprehension, the first act of the intellect. When I say "dog" you just simply understand what a dog is. You don't even need to have a visual image, you just understand it. But if "dog" wasn't a thing (as metaphysical impossibilities are) it couldn't exist in your intellect in the way it does.

So if something can exist coherently in your intellect, it must be metaphysically possible.
Now it might be the case that we can't really conceive of solipsism and just think we can. We might think we can conceive of a square-triangle, but we'd actually be conceiving a triangle with square attributes, or something in between a square and a triangle.

But I've already rebutted this. We can easily examine the properties of the mind, and examine the properties of physical matter. So the possibility that we're mistakenly conceiving of solipsism is very slim, since we understand very very thoroughly what the mind is, and its properties. We're not saying that "solipsism is metaphysically possible" because we just don't know enough about the mind. We're saying, that because we know the mind, and we know matter, it's easy to see that solipsism is conceivable.
But, as I've defended, there's nothing explicitly or implicitly contradictory about solipsism. This reaffirms its metaphysical possibility.

So we've been given several good reasons to think that mind is not material. 1. It's not comparing apples to oranges, or bunnies to chew, it's saying that they just are the same thing. 2. Solipsism is metaphysically possible, as demonstrated by its conceivability and plausibility.

The premises of my argument remain defended. Mind is fundamental. Reality is mental, and whatever is mental has a mind behind it. Therefore, it follows with necessity that there exist a mind which grounds reality.

[1] Mind and Cosmos, Thomas Nagel, p.40-41



I am most grateful to Con for a most stimulating debate. Regarding the debate itself, I realize I perhaps should have maintained more objections and points, but I believe I have hit the jugular on the core ones. I will summarize these points and keep my round concise and powerful so not to distract from these main issues.

Final round debate format:

I’m aware my arguments are going to tread on the fine line between ‘introducing new rebuttals’ and ‘re-enforcing existing rebuttals’, I’m pretty sure what will follow is acceptable given Pro’s presentation in the last round, but just noted I am aware of this grey area.


My opponent’s argument for reality must have been caused by a mind/is a mind I had already addressed in the first round, the additional premise “P1: Whatever is mental is either (i) a mind or (ii) caused by a mind.” was countered with by the CPU analogy, where the overall mind is physical and causing a pseudo-idealistic reality.

My opponent attempted to rebut this with the fact that the CPU cannot interact with the minds, this is true only if materialism is false, which is the point the argument was attempting to make, even under the all the assumptions Pro gives, it doesn’t equate to arguing for god. It only argues that everything is ‘mind-stuff’. Even under the assumption everything is mind-stuff, this same stuff need not arise from an immaterial overall mind. So my original point on this stands as Pro has not demonstrated P1, and therefore his entire conclusion even if P2 is true.

Mind-Brain Separation:

Pro is quite set on the mind & brain being two different entities. The issue as I pointed out is this doesn’t explain anything at all, it just sets the problem as most easily seen and leaves it at that. I have argued that we see very strong evidence of the type of relationship between mind & brain we would expect if the mind were just a physical state of the brain. It is true that it does not rule out a separate mind & brain, but it is a specific prediction of what you would expect if the mind & brain were the same thing.

We have physical damage, drugs, mental imaging which I had already mentioned as well as large complex networked systems such as the internet, which carry images text etc. which experiences similar philosophical problems as we have when talking about consciousness. It is possible to ‘weigh’ what makes the images, text etc. on the internet in practice once we understand intricately what physical process give rise to the ‘immaterial’ ideas on it, there is no reason to think this cannot be the case with consciousness. It is true it’s not absolute proof that mind and brain are the same thing, but it is most elegantly, simply and pragmatically solved by making this (justified) assumption.

This appears to be the point Pro is raising with the Bunny & Chew thought experiment, however the flaw is the ‘point of view’, introspection and ‘extrospection’ are unsurprisingly going to lead to different views on the same thing. The inside of your house is different to what’s outside. Therefore Pro needed to demonstrate that we really are looking at different things and that this ‘point of view’ issue is not a factor [1].

My beef with Idealism:

You will have noticed my saying multiple times throughout this debate that ‘it does not disprove/falsify idealism’. That is because - it can explain virtually anything one can throw at it, one can always add an assumption to explain an observation, in this case Pro adds an assumption of a ‘link’ between brain & mind, with no reference as to what this link is nor how we would expect it to behave to test it. This additional assumption is susceptible to Occum’s Razor as I have already argued.

Free Will & Reality Perception:

Once again I do not entertain the notions of ‘it seems like we have it, so we have it’. Pro needs to do much more than this to satisfy the positive burden of proof he has to demonstrate we have genuine free will, which I assert he has not done so this debate. Appeals to intuition especially when regarding consciousness are a sure-fire way to get the answers wrong.

Pro drops my points regarding optical illusions & the blind spot, which are very real indications of our brain perceiving reality as opposed to all of reality and our own consciousness being part of a grand mind. I can only assume additional assumptions are required to explain these observations in the light of idealism, why should colours be different when surrounded by a pseudo-shadow? Once again these observations are readily explained by a materialistic mind, but not as easily explained by an idealistic one. Moreover it really does call what conclusions we can make from what ‘seems obvious’ from introspection (such as free will) into question.

Ironically enough, disproving free will still does not disprove idealism, as the idealist can just assume a ‘materialistic world’ in a grand mind (which is an extra assumption), but the lack of is as I’ve argued on several points, much better explained by a materialistic one. There are good reasons to think this is the case, as I already argued, such as emotions triggered by drugs which affect our ‘free will’ or choices.

Pro summarises my argument on the ‘connection’ between mind & brain:

P1: IF mind is matter, THEN there would be an intimate relationship between the two.

P2: There is an intimate relationship between the two

C: Mind is matter.

The argument is deductively invalid, yes, it is inductively valid however. And is a better explanation than my opponent’s idealism proposal, which seems to explain anything given the right assumption.

Pro makes the argument regarding ‘decoding’ visual refutes itself as evidence for a synonymous brain/mind, I don’t see how this argument leads to this conclusion, and seems to fall under the ‘introspection/extrospection’ issue I highlighted in this round.

Occam's Razor:

One can go through this debate and look at the assumptiosn that must be made for each view of consciousness to work and be true. Materialism makes the assumption of there being brute ‘stuff’ (material) and the reducability of consciousness to non-conciousness, and I have justified this assumption with a number of arguments.

In idealism two assumptions need be made, first that all ‘stuff’ is a perception of a mind and secondly that there is a ‘link’ between the brain & the mind. Pro has given no reason to accept #2 and #1 is a more complicated assumption than material being a brute fact.

Therefore it seems materialism wins on the basis of assumptions

Moreover this grand mind Pro has asserted last round is disembodied, yet we have zero examples of any disembodied minds existing in reality as we have seen thus far, which seems to be another assumption.


I never did drop my point on the Goldberg’s conjecture, and the argument made against it seemed to be irrelevant. I only demonstrated that the Goldberg’s conjecture is a logical possibility, and might be metaphysically possible, this point stands on it’s own. The bigger point, that sollopsism seems to be a logical possibility and not necessarily a metaphysical possibility is what I was holding in contention. It is true you can analyse the properties of mind & matter to get a logical solution, but everything up to this point I have argued otherwise. Therefore the rebuttal against whether or not sollopsism is metaphysically possible stands.

My opponent has dropped my point on my very simple “All Irishman are called Jim, Person A is called Jim, Jim is an Irishman” rebuttal to this, and I have given a number of examples of conceivable, yet logically impossible objects in my first round, which reinforces this statement.

Simply stating it is conceivable and logically consistent is not enough to justify metaphysical possibility and my opponent has done nothing to address this critical point further beyond restating his original contentions regarding it. Which is what my opponent has done last round.

“So if something can exist coherently in your intellect, it must be metaphysically possible.”

This connection, the axiom S5 is one my opponent needs to demonstrate. Unfortunately I cannot give any positive anti-arguments against this now but the unfulfilment of the BoP on this part is sufficient to rebut this point.


As I have argued, materialism makes fewer simpler, much more testable and more reasonable assumptions than idealism does. Moreover I have demonstrated that idealism is more of a theory of ‘anything’ than a theory of everything and have demonstrated that the solipsism argument against materialism rests on unsound assumptions.

Therefore, the resolution is negated, vote Con!

Final Words:

Once again I greatfully appreciate Pro putting in the time and effort and agreeing to this most interesting debate. I look forward to debating him again in future, now I leave this debate in the hands of the voters, best of luck!


[1] It appears this argument is a new argument (albeit using the same ‘props’) of Pro’s in the final round, so I think this new rebuttal is justified given the circumstance.

Debate Round No. 4
251 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Harper 1 year ago
The big flaw on Con's side is that he doesn't mention how consciousness may not be one and the same as the brain or even a property of it but that 1. consciousness is emergent (i.e. it is a result of the neurons firing and chemicals being released) and 2. it doesn't have to be a property of the brain or the same as the brain to be dependent on the brain's existence (apple seeds are different from apples (i.e. not a property since it can be thought of as an "object" on its own), but you cannot have apple seeds in a world without apples).

And then Pro goes on about how just because consciousness may be dependent on a physical brain in our world, that it may not be so in other possible worlds. You could very well say that just because circles are not squares in our world that they could be in another. It violates logic, because consciousness is *defined* by the fact that it is a consequence of a living, physical brain. You cannot find it just floating around, without any sort of causation or origin. That's another thing Pro fails to address: where did that consciousness come from? Did it just appear?
Posted by Envisage 2 years ago
After reading this debate again it is clear that everyone who voted me simply did not understand the debate.

I disagree with like 30% of what I wrote, and they were the most important 30%.

... Yet I find the argument less convincing now...
Posted by zmikecuber 2 years ago
thanks! :D
Posted by Envisage 2 years ago
Congratulations zmike!
Posted by Sswdwm 2 years ago
I'm waiting for 9,000 views lol
Posted by Christian_Debater 2 years ago
Im wondering if some people are waiting till the last minute to vote bomb =/
Posted by Envisage 2 years ago
What I proposed*
Posted by Envisage 2 years ago
True zmike but why I proposed there is idealism is basically exactly what materialism is except everything is mental, and a mind is required to ground it.

So the explanatory power is the same except the extra assumption.

Materialism seems inductively demonstrable, if all the predictions come true, and if we can determine we have no true free will, our conscious thoughts are reducible to brain activities and that conciousness is corruptible. Then it seems idealism gets pushed back to the scenario where it falls to Occums razor.

It's a long winded approach though, probably need to work in something simpler for future debates, or just one aspect (free will/corruptability) and so something akin to what you did with solipsism.

Would a modal argument for a conceivable world with zero concious beings hold weight? I thought if this in the debate the the first objection I could think of is by conceiving of a world, you yourself become part of this conceivable world by conceiving it (so a world without consciousness's conceivabioity is questionable)
Posted by Christian_Debater 2 years ago
@Romanii True enough, it explains all the vote bombs

@zmikecuber I sent a report too. It seems very common on this debate.

I'll try to send a vote, but I'm really procrastinating on reading all of this.
Posted by zmikecuber 2 years ago
Anooother 7 point votebomb with literally no rfd?!? lol...
11 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by donald.keller 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro set the debate against himself by saying "Most Likely" instead of "possible". But through out the debate, Pro held on to his idealism argument until the end, while Con drop numerous arguments, like his CPU argument, which wasn't strong to begin with. As for sources, Con linked back to a blog, while Pro's were more reliable. I see a vote based on the voter's low intellect and extreme laziness, she should fix that...
Vote Placed by Pitbull15 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: This was too close to call... I think they both did an equally good job of debating. Good job, you two.
Vote Placed by Sagey 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro made many irrational assertions that I could not follow and used misquoted Sam Harris who did not mean his statement to be construed that way, as Sam meant the opposite of what Pro is stating if you listen to the rest of Sam's argument. Found some grammar/spelling mistakes in Pro's arguments, didn't find any in Con's. Con pointed out much, but not all of the irrationality in Pro's misguided assumptions. Essentially, Con's arguments had less holes than Pro's.
Vote Placed by Rational_Thinker9119 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con admits himself that he had new rebuttals in his last round (conduct Pro). Spelling goes to Pro, as Con made several errors. Such as: "...purely physical manifestations, and while the brain" Sentence wasn't completed, and no period. "Therefore it seems materialism wins on the basis of assumptions" No period. There were a few typos too, but there is a character limitation. Sources go to Pro. Not only did he have more sources, but his were more reliable (the SnowBrains link from Con was to a someone's blog for example, which could have been posted by anyone). Pro argues for Idealism, then argues that God is the best inference. Con attacked in several ways, for example, by claiming that just because something is logically possible, doesn't mean it is metaphysically possible. However, this is being to strict in this case. I feel Pro made a solid case against Dualism and Physicalism, while Con's rebuttals were based mainly on misunderstandings Pro's arguments.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Note that "God" is defined by Pro in a way unrelated to any religious concept of God, because religion deals with "ultimate power" (see Wikipedia) and that's not claimed. Still, Pro can possibly prove the resolution, even if it's not particularly interesting. So what is the meaning of "the mind that grounds reality"? Pro must prove that nothing mental can interact with something non-mental. Conventionally, human senses are conceived as the means of interaction, so how does Pro get rid of that possibility? Pro claims that if mind and material had any common properties then they couldn't be separate substances. Con's defense of materialism seems adequate to get rid of the oddly defined God, by it would have been easier to attack the necessity of separate things being unable to interact.
Vote Placed by CynicalDiogenes 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Both sides argued really well, and I must admit it took me a long time to understand a lot of the arguments.The whole debate finally boiled down to whether idealism or materialism is true, and I felt Pro's arguments were slightly better as Con was not able to refute several of his arguments, while Pro was able to adequately refute several of the objections raised by Con.
Vote Placed by iamanatheistandthisiswhy 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con decided to rightly attack the premises of the argument, and by doing this forces Pro to show that their is no interaction between mind and brain. However Con showed that this interaction is the case and as such the proposition is defeated. As this proposition is defeated then the greater argument "god exists" is naturally defeated and so I award Con argument points. I was hesitant to vote this way after round 3 and Con's internet argument. However, I believe that this was clarified in round 4 by Con and so my vote was asserted. I would suggest Con is more explicit with this internet argument in future, as it was confusing on first reading. Great debate.
Vote Placed by n7 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments
Vote Placed by Romanii 2 years ago
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Vote Placed by philochristos 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Well, this was interesting. I think I understood most of it, but unfortunately, I don't think I understood enough to make a competent vote. The debate appears to come down to where idealism or materialism is true, which are completely opposite views of reality. Assuming Pro's arguments for idealism are sound, I don't think he said enough to justify the claim that there is a single mind behind reality, which is what he would have to do to prove God. However, Con didn't challenge him on that, so no biggy. Con just challenged him on his idealism and explained why he thinks materialism is true. I don't agree with idealism or materialism, but if I had to choose, I'd go with idealism. But I don't want to vote my bias, so I'm just going to have to leave this alone. Sorry.