The Instigator
happypancakeeater
Pro (for)
Winning
19 Points
The Contender
ZachParton
Con (against)
Losing
3 Points

The only thing we can be certain of is our existence.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/24/2008 Category: Science
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,393 times Debate No: 2172
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (5)
Votes (6)

 

happypancakeeater

Pro

This debate will be a discussion of subjectivist and objectivist frames of reference aswell as the possibility of a priori knowledge. Your references can include anything from Berkeley, Kant, and Hume to your own experiences. Please enjoy yourself and think outside the box!
ZachParton

Con

I disagree with you on one simple point. The fact that we can be sure of our existence. I ask you to define existence as this is your debate, but for my argument, i will use the philosophypages.com definition

Instantiation in reality, or actual being.

We assume that we, or moreover, our conscious exists, because that is how our interactions are on a daily basis. I would submit, that we are simply embodiments of a higher consciousness, or energy/energy level. we are the embodiments of a single energy, and therefore, any instance we create, is simply that of that higher energy. therefore, saying that we exist, is a fallacy. by saying we instantize (i warn, i make up words), we are simply proving the existence of the higher energy or force
Debate Round No. 1
happypancakeeater

Pro

There are three problems with your argument:

First: If we were some part of a higher being we would exist.

Second: There is no higher being. Our consciousnesses are what they are, which is to say that we exist because we percieve. Since I don't percieve "higher being", my existence is all that there is to existence. I cannot know anything beyond my perceptions. Existence is a de facto idea. We "are what we are", so unless you can make me aware of this "higher being", it doesn't exist.

Third: Descarte's statement "I think, therefore I am." is the truest definition of existence. It is the ONLY definition of existence that is universally true for things that exist in the way that we do.
ZachParton

Con

I will refute first your arguments, then move on to a rebuilding of mine own.

1. We do not exist, a higher force exists.

2. I agree, there is no higher being. what there is is a higher force. The fact that all humans think in the same manner is a level of connectivity that surpasses perceptions or experiences.

3. I disagree with your definition of existence on the ground that it entitles itself, and therefore cannot be used in the realm of debate. even if you do not concede that fact, you recognize that existence is universal. thinking must not be the basis of existence only that which exists must be the basis, therefore i argue my definition in superiority. Only on thing exists. a higher force that is the universe

My arguments stand firm against the existence of ones-self
Debate Round No. 2
happypancakeeater

Pro

First:
Your answer to my first point doesn't prove that we don't exist. At most, they assert that we exist as some part of a higher being.

Second:
For clarification, the higher force will be labelled as "being" in the debate because the force is assumed to exist so it "is" and therefore would "be."

Third:
All definitions of existence entitle themselves because existence is (ironically enough) "issing" or "being", thus it is still a valid definition in the debate. I never stated that existence was universal. I simply assumed that you exist and many like you exist. I also assumed that you exist the same way that I do. Existence extends only to that which I percieve. If I assume that you are similar to me, I can also assume that you are typing and responding on a computer, but remember that all of this is based on assumption. This reinforces the point that the only thing I know with absolute certainty is that I exist.

Lastly:
At this point in the debate, even if you were granted all your arguments, I would still be winning. This is because the only thing you challenged was my existence. You've lost that argument because even if I am some part of a higher force I still exist as that part. I may not have a distinct existence, but that doesn't negate my existence. Secondly, I know I exist because I am and it is impossible for me to not exist because my existence is what I am right now. Lastly, assuming you exist, you know I exist in some form (no matter how small) because you are recieving input on your computer screen from me. It doesn't matter how I exist. I simply exist in some way, and that existence is the only thing that I can be absolutely sure of.
ZachParton

Con

I will respond to your first contention in a moment.

On to your second one, a being implies will, and embodiment.

Third: by your definition, everything MUST exist, if i say it does. i perceive it does, so by your definition and arguments, the original statement you made is false. a negative burden is simply to disprove the original statement, and through your arguments, i have. Descartes objectivity has come into question, so i dont even believe your resources are credible. simply because one says something does not make it true. i urge you to contend me on this point.

on your summary, i would argue that even though we are part of a higher force, we alone cannot stand, cannot exist.
Debate Round No. 3
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by ZachParton 9 years ago
ZachParton
you can. i have a lot of work to do today, so ill try to stop in and make some arguments!
Posted by happypancakeeater 9 years ago
happypancakeeater
great, do you want to start it or do you want me to?
Posted by ZachParton 9 years ago
ZachParton
mm this was a good debate, i took a side that i don't necessarily agree with, but it was fun. ill take you up on debating it further sometime in the future.
Posted by blond_guy 9 years ago
blond_guy
"If we were some part of a higher being we would exist."

good point.
Posted by happypancakeeater 9 years ago
happypancakeeater
We'll debate the points you brought up in your last rebuttal separately. You are correct about the negative burden. The problem is that I have effectively proven that we only know that we exist of ourselves. We don't know why or how, but that is unimportant to my argument. At the end of this debate I still win because I've proven my thesis. Lastly, I didn't reference Descartes because he is proof of concept. I referenced him because he has the most concise definition of "being." In philosophical arguments, the only legitimate reference would be to a syllogism or lengthy proof.

Here's how we should split the arguments for future debates:

1. Possible proof of a higher existence and relevance to our existance.

2. Being and existence and the difference between them.

You may start them and challenge me if you wish.
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by rofflewoffles 7 years ago
rofflewoffles
happypancakeeaterZachPartonTied
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Vote Placed by Niduki 9 years ago
Niduki
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Vote Placed by blond_guy 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by happypancakeeater 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Tatarize 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Korezaan 9 years ago
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