The Instigator
Grapes42
Pro (for)
Winning
8 Points
The Contender
1111111111
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

The intellect is immaterial

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Grapes42
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/30/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 794 times Debate No: 44904
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (0)
Votes (2)

 

Grapes42

Pro

By intellect I mean the rational thinking aspect of the person. By immaterial I mean the intellect is not made of matter.

I will be using a formulation of an argument by St. Thomas Aquinas, below.

1. In order for the intellect to have knowledge of X, the intellect must at least have some sort of interaction with X or with Y, if Y can produce knowledge of X.

2. The concept of truth is not a material object and no interaction with a group of material objects can produce knowledge of the concept of truth.

C: The concept of truth must be immaterial and the intellect must also be immaterial in order to interact with and therefore know the concept of truth.

The above argument is logically valid. Con must provide a reason as to why one of the two premises should be doubted in order to doubt the conclusion.

Thank you
1111111111

Con

In this debate, I will take the con side and argue against my opponents arguments.
First of all, I would like to make a comment about Aquinas himself, who was an essential theologian and philosopher in the 13 century. As much as I admire his writings and his extreme intellect, he isn`t up to date. In the 21st Century, most of the scientists and philosophers regard him as a historical figure. Apart from that, his books mostly lie in dusty bookshelves, waiting to be read. Thats how out of date this man is.

Argument 2 sounds invalid. You`re making a distinction between the material and immaterial world. Thoughts, language etc.. are all physical(in my opinion) We learn through our senses, we pick up information on a daily basis and these thoughts lie in the neurons. I wouldn`t understand why thought and physical world couldn`t go hand in hand.
The concept of truth lies only in the language. Fact. Without words, any kind of communication, there would probably be no thoughts. So is the concept of truth immaterial? Pronouncing a word, formulating a sentence, producing a sound, would you call that immaterial?
Thank you for a thought provoking round.
Sorry btw I wrote my argument in like 10 minutes. Going out of town now.
Debate Round No. 1
Grapes42

Pro

I thank Con for his rebuttal.

Obviously it is not central to the debate, but while Aquinas is a fugure from the past it does not mean that his argument is necessarrily out of date. Philosophical arguments don't necessarily rest upon claims of modern science, but are timeless reflections upon the logical framework of reality. Also, some philosophers today still do use this type of argument.

Now, do I have to concede that there is an implicit premise from the original argument that needs to be said, so here it is.

"Only something immaterial can interact with something else that is immaterial".

So, if the intellect is to interact with an immaterial thing then it must be immaterial. Of course I am arguing that the concept of truth is immaterial. The reason for this is found in the premises of the original argument. To expand, the concept of truth is not something that we can find located in the physical world. I can't go on a walk and say "oh look there's truth sitting over there on a bench". Rather, it is a universal predicating idea.

Now as a Christian I believe that Jesus has a material human form and that He is the Truth, but He is the Truth because He is the universal predicating form of truth in His divinity, but that is an aside.

So, the overarching point is that truth is a universal concept, it is not a particular thing. And no set of particular things can grant one an overarching concept.

So, while Con says that saying a sentence is a material action I can agree, but the overaching concept of truth that predicates the meaning of the words in the sentence cannot be produced from a material object nor the material objects that the words produce.

Thank you
1111111111

Con

1111111111 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
Grapes42

Pro

Ok well Con forfeited the round. So I am not sure what to do. I maintian my same position as before.
1111111111

Con

1111111111 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Grapes42

Pro

Ok well Con forfeited another round.
1111111111

Con

1111111111 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
No comments have been posted on this debate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by zmikecuber 3 years ago
zmikecuber
Grapes421111111111Tied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by Wylted 3 years ago
Wylted
Grapes421111111111Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
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Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro gets conducts because of FF. Con never refuted any of pro's final arguments. Arguments go to pro.