The Instigator
InsaneSanity
Pro (for)
Winning
4 Points
The Contender
PowerPikachu21
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Proving your existence to another person is impossible

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
InsaneSanity
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/28/2015 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 429 times Debate No: 83146
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)

 

InsaneSanity

Pro

Hello, I have attempted this debate before, and seen it done, but both the person who did it first and I were trolled by vi_spex. If you want to know how then look at any debate they have ever done. Also we must both prove our arguments to be true rather than simply refute the other person's arguments. Here is my first argument. :)

If you existed, then I would not be able to tell the difference between that and if you did not exist. Rene Descartes quote "cognito ergo sum" does not apply here, because it can only be used to prove existence to oneself. I do not know that you think, so I do not know that you are. I have not seen you, I have not heard you, I have not recognized you with any of my senses, which means that I have no proof that you exist.

This argument was fairly short, but I imagine that they will get better by the next round because we will have both made our starting points. :)
PowerPikachu21

Con

I will be arguing that proving existence to another being is NOT impossible.

First, however, definitions must be given. Since Pro never gave a definition in Round 1, I'll give some.

Exist: "have objective reality or being"

Computer Virus: a malware program which can damage your computer, even to the point it becomes unusable.

Point 1: I accepted this debate.

If I don't exist, then how am I debating you? You could assume I'm a robot, but even then, I still exist. I've also accepted other debates, so those people know I'm an existing user of this website. Even if I'm a computer virus, I still exist. (Source: My own profile shows debates I've entered, proving other people know I'm a user) Pro must prove either A) A computer virus doesn't exist, or B) a non-existent user can enter a debate.

Point 2: Other people saw me.

Seeing is believing! I go to school, and many people saw my face and body, and know me. These people know I have objective reality in this world. Sure, you may question this, but 1,000 people don't use this site, and are in another country, therefore don't know I exist. But I don't need all 7 billion people on Earth to see my face to negate the resolution, just the viewers of this debate need to know, and they probably do.

Pro must refute my arguments, as well as show why I likely may not exist, despite the fact I'm debating him right now. And with that, I'm sure I got this in the bag.
Debate Round No. 1
InsaneSanity

Pro

Thanks for accepting this debate! However I'd like to ask you to make sure to check someone's gender on their profile before saying "him" as you did at the end. We are not all male. I am agender, I don't have a gender, so I go by they. It's okay though, I'm not mad. Now without further ado, I shall hop into my argument.

You have said that people see you at school every day, but that does not matter to me or anybody who is reading this (if indeed any of us exist). If you did not exist then those words could still happen.

Are dreams reality? Most people would say no. Do you believe that you are in a dream when you are dreaming? Rarely. It is possible that there are dreams within dreams, so that what we know to be "real life" is only a dream, and therefore not real.

I have proven that people outside of this website seeing you cannot be proven to me or anyone reading this, and that I could be debating this even if it was a dream, and not reality. Thus my original points still stand. You should vote pro!
PowerPikachu21

Con

Now I see why this debate is in the "philosophy" category. Anyways, this is what I have to say.

Rebuttal:

"Do you believe that you are in a dream when you are dreaming?" Actually, it depends on whether the reader is capable of lucid dreaming. As for me, usually I can only tell the difference between dream and reality after I wake up.

Speaking of which, there are some differences between dream and reality I can think of.

Dream: Takes place in the subconscious, usually when asleep. Pretty much anything can happen, and if you're capable of lucid dreaming, you can do anything. Dreams usually don't take place on a specific date, and you most likely aren't in a real place.

Reality: Once you wake up from a dream, you can be certain you are awake, and in reality. You can't do anything you want, as physics act as a boundary. Reality takes place on a specific date, and you definitely are in a real place.

Since dreaming and reality aren't the same thing, why assume reality itself is a dream? Sure, we could be dreaming, but what species can sleep for 50+ years, without anything but rest?

Defense:

"You have said that people see you at school every day, but that does not matter to me or anybody who is reading this"

I concede I cannot prove to you I have been seen, but that's irrelevant. Since I exist, I am able to interact with people, who also exist, and impact the world. The resolution is not "Con must prove he exists", but rather "Is proving your own existence impossible?", and I have shown that I interacted with other people.

"If you did not exist then those words could still happen."

What? I would like Pro to explain how a non-existent being can speak, or even type. This doesn't make sense.

Argument:

Point 1: I proved how I exist

How many people knowing my existence does it take to disprove the resolution anyways? I doubt it's more than 10, which I have more than 20 acquaintances, both in reality, and this website. The question, however, is "Does humanity itself exist?".

Point 2: Does humanity exist?

In order for me to prove humanity's existence, we must ask these questions:

1. Can we see humanity?

To answer this question, just walk outside. You can see many people in your neighborhood. Since we can see humanity, it probably exists.

2. Does humanity impact society?

To answer this question, well, I made a list here: YouTube has youtubers, who exist and either talks about their own life, play video games, or even teach the viewers some things. Famous scientists invented things, such as Thomas Edison made the light bulb. (Someone might say Edison doesn't exist, but somebody had to have created the light bulb, otherwise it wouldn't exist!) Doctors cure sick patients. The patients are able to get sick since bacteria got into their bodies, which couldn't happen if the patient doesn't even exist. Since humanity can impact society, it must have some form of existence.

3. Can we touch humanity?

Yes we can. I'll just stop here to avoid innuendos.

Under these criteria, humanity most likely exists. You can't physically see me, but just me being capable of posting this argument would suffice as proof, wouldn't it?

This is round 2 out of 3, so I'm a little worried. But alas, what are Pro's thoughts?
Debate Round No. 2
InsaneSanity

Pro

Hello, sorry for the wait, I forgot about this website for the past two days, because life happened. Still happening in fact but I need a break from it.

"Actually, it depends on whether the reader is capable of lucid dreaming."
That is a valid point, and many people DO know when they are dreaming. However, this does not mean that only one layer of a dream could exist. Lucid dreamers know at least when they are in the layer of a dream past this one if this is a dream, but how can we be certain that that applies for all layers of dreams? Maybe it is impossible to know that you are dreaming, and you think that you are dreaming when you are in fact dreaming inside of another dream.

"Dream: Takes place in the subconscious, usually when asleep. Pretty much anything can happen, and if you're capable of lucid dreaming, you can do anything. Dreams usually don't take place on a specific date, and you most likely aren't in a real place."
That has a lot of usage for the word "usually". When you dream you are convinced that you are awake, and if awakeness is really a dream then why shouldn't it work the same way? How do we really know the difference when they seem the same?

"Reality: Once you wake up from a dream, you can be certain you are awake, and in reality. You can't do anything you want, as physics act as a boundary. Reality takes place on a specific date, and you definitely are in a real place"
I have already pointed out that dream layer 1 and 2 could be different, maybe physics in the "real" world aren't how the truly real world works. Also your statement of being in a real place is just an assumption. It has nothing to back it up anymore than saying that dreams are also a real place.

"I concede I cannot prove to you I have been seen, but that's irrelevant. (rest of paragraph) and I have shown that I interacted with other people.
These people do not know that you exist either. All they know is that their brain is processing certain colours and sounds, which may or may not be real. They could also be dreaming for all they know.

"What? I would like Pro to explain how a non-existent being can speak, or even type. This doesn't make sense."
Riiiiight, that was stupidly worded on my part. If this is indeed a dream, then how can anyone know that the people on the other end are not simply their own brain making that up, and therfore themself? It is easily possible that that is so.

Rebuttal to point one
I have already proven that your aquaintances, if they too are not a dream, do not know if you exist. They merely suspect so. It has not been proven.

Rebuttal to point two
These visions of humans that we see could also be our own brains. You don't know who is real, who isn't, or even if anyone is real.
Again, if this is a dream, then all of those things you see are being invented by your mind, so they are an integral part of you, not their own entity. YouTube is your brain, Edison is your brain, bacteria are your brain, EVERYTHING could be your brain.
Please do avoid innuendos.... But a dream can cause the sense of touch to occur, therefore touching humanity does not prove its existence.
Also, just because humanity exists does not mean it exists in this layer of a dream. If it is true that each person is alone in this layer of a dream, so the only person in the dream world, then that does not mean that humanity does not exist in the real world.

Added argument:

Have you heard of the experience machine[1]? It's a concept of a dream-like machine, that would be perfectly designed to prevent you from realizing that you are not in real life, and it would be pre-programmed so that you would get to "do" whatever you want. We would not know of our aquaintances non-existence if we were in this machine.

Source
[1] http://www.uky.edu...

P.S. Smiley face! :)
PowerPikachu21

Con

PowerPikachu21 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by Vox_Veritas 1 year ago
Vox_Veritas
Solipsism.
Posted by feelthebernie 1 year ago
feelthebernie
I had this debate with vi_spex too. It's hard to take him seriously
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by wipefeetnmat 1 year ago
wipefeetnmat
InsaneSanityPowerPikachu21Tied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's argument was logical and imo C?n failed to give an equal argument. Conduct is for forfeit.