The Instigator
Comeatmebruh666
Pro (for)
The Contender
BrettBoelkens
Con (against)

There are absolute truths about existence.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Debate Round Forfeited
Comeatmebruh666 has forfeited round #3.
Our system has not yet updated this debate. Please check back in a few minutes for more options.
Time Remaining
00days00hours00minutes00seconds
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/18/2017 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 6 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 401 times Debate No: 103244
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (14)
Votes (0)

 

Comeatmebruh666

Pro

This argument is addressing the question "Are there absolute truths about existence?" and I will let con decide all the definitions if he is willing. Let the debating begin.
BrettBoelkens

Con

What is truth? It should likely be appropriated to that which conforms to reality. That what is. But here we get to the difficult part, how do we find out what is true? Are we just brains in a vat? Are we in the matrix? Are our senses reliable, and if so, how? To find out what is true, it is required to go to the bedrock of epistemology, How do we know our reasoning is correct? Sadly, no matter what the answer is, this is a circular argument. If one supplies reason as the foundation of their own reasoning, you're using your reasoning to support your own reasoning. But then if our reasoning isn't supportable, then one can't reasonably say that it isn't supportable since one is using their reasoning to say their reasoning is unsupportable. One can not say that it is impossible to know anything since you must know that it possible to know that is impossible to know anything. Therefore one must say that one can not know anything, not even this.

But some disagree, there may be some superficial truths we could find. First, there is existence. Existence exists. Second, there is at least one mind, the one that is conscious. It may be possible that there are no other minds, and everyone is just philosophical zombies. Or we just are crazy and imagine everyone else exists. I don't think anyone would disagree that those are right, even though they are still using reasoning. Some add mathematical proofs into this category, but I don't think they have good evidence that they should. Mathematics must be done under certain logical rules, like the Law of Noncontradiction and such. But what evidence do is supplied that those laws of logic are correct.

So in conclusion, besides some very superficial truths, I don't think that there are any absolute truths, due to our lack of a method to find absolute truth. Unless we find some new epistemologically sound way to find truth, we're stuck. And the sad thing is, we are both presumingly using reason to argue our positions, and as said before, reason is likely unreasonable.
Debate Round No. 1
Comeatmebruh666

Pro

Thanks you for responding so quickly, and providing the basis of my argument. First lets start with the BIV argument. You kindly proved that we cannot deduce anything from our experiences and senses, which is fine with me. I'm going to assume your reasoning on reasoning is based on the principles of Socratic wisdom and if it was then I will also agree with that but some things are still demonstrable, such as the truths I will list next.

Second of all you start specifying a truth which everyone excepts. The fundamental truth of existence and this will be the truth I will be fighting for. Because I believe that existence is a fundamental truth, that was proved by Ren" Descartes, and because I presume you've heard the quote from him I shan't write it here. Also I am one of those people who do believe logic and mathematics are also absolutely true because they can be modified to work in any set of scenarios. For example if there is a part of logic which doesn't work in a given scenario we can just discard it, or if logic doesn't work at all in a scenario then we just discard it and thus it still works.

And yes we will for the sake of the argument assume that reason can be used in an argument. Let's stay away from Socratic wisdom in that regard. Because it would only impede the reasoning, thereby ending the whole debate.
BrettBoelkens

Con

My position in this debate, if I didn't make it clear enough in the primary round, is that there are no truly meaningful truths in the universe. It is much like if someone told you there are girls at a bar, but when you arrive you find an 800-pound female crack addict, a 90-year-old with Alziehmers missing fingers, and an anorexic goth with a wildly worrying fascination with blood and guts. It was, in fact, true that there were girls in said bar, but for most people, it's irrelevant to the original statement. However, it does not mean that anything meaningful whatsoever comes out of it. It is ordinarily assumed when someone says that there are girls at a bar, they more likely than not mean girls with more of a flirtatious streak with a bit of minx in them. The same applies to the statement about absolute truth.

Truths do exist, such as existence existing. This is obvious. By extension, if we are judging purely by merits, you have one. But truly no good debate really goes like that, does it? Surprisingly we both agree substantially on the points about epistemology, disagreeing only on logic and mathematics. I personally don't think that unless logic and mathematics have some connection to reality, they really aren't very useful(as a digression, I once had to teach a bikini-clad teen geometry while her father was drunk at a pool party). My position is that there are truths, that they aren't helpful or useful. I don't know how knowing existence exists really helps.

My position is not self-refuting, merely paradoxical. I personally think that the foundation of epistemology is much like trying to find the uncaused cause of the universe, or if there are just turtles all the way down. At some point, all the rules break down.

I do not think that I know what I do not know. -Socrates

As an aside, I believe you would enjoy Monty Python's Philosophy Song. Here's my favorite part

Aristotle, Aristotle was a bugger for the bottle
Hobbes was fond of his dram
And Rene Descartes was a drunken fart
"I drink, therefore I am"

Yes, Socrates, himself, is particularly missed
A lovely little thinker
But a bugger when he's pissed

Debate Round No. 2
This round has not been posted yet.
This round has not been posted yet.
Debate Round No. 3
This round has not been posted yet.
This round has not been posted yet.
Debate Round No. 4
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Comeatmebruh666 5 months ago
Comeatmebruh666
Surgeon, I must say that epistemology and metaphysics isn't postmodernism, it's traditional philosophy and thus more to the modernist philosophy and less to postmodernism. Postmodernism is more to social philosophy, you know marxism, anarchism and social nature of construction of nature, I would like it if you'd even take the time to know what you're talking about.

Also I would like to criticize your stance on ontology as you're unaware that senses, from a philosophical stand point, are irrelevant and unreliable as there is no sufficient test or argument to be made on that side of the debate, unless someone comes up with a way to logically conclude, that this isn't just a dream/biv/any other existential example of how our senses could be unreliable, and thus not reliable. So unless you've come up with a solution that provides sufficient evidence that this world isn't just in my/your/our head(s) then start making one up to support your claims of self refutation. Also your hypothesis of how the senses provide us with concepts can be refuted with the same argument by saying that the concepts are just dreams or fed through a monitor in a vat.
Posted by Comeatmebruh666 5 months ago
Comeatmebruh666
Surgeon, I must say that epistemology and metaphysics isn't postmodernism, it's traditional philosophy and thus more to the modernist philosophy and less to postmodernism. Postmodernism is more to social philosophy, you know marxism, anarchism and social nature of construction of nature, I would like it if you'd even take the time to know what you're talking about.

Also I would like to criticize your stance on ontology as you're unaware that senses, from a philosophical stand point, are irrelevant and unreliable as there is no sufficient test or argument to be made on that side of the debate, unless someone comes up with a way to logically conclude, that this isn't just a dream/biv/any other existential example of how our senses could be unreliable, and thus not reliable. So unless you've come up with a solution that provides sufficient evidence that this world isn't just in my/your/our head(s) then start making one up to support your claims of self refutation. Also your hypothesis of how the senses provide us with concepts can be refuted with the same argument by saying that the concepts are just dreams or fed through a monitor in a vat.
Posted by Comeatmebruh666 5 months ago
Comeatmebruh666
Surgeon, I must say that epistemology and metaphysics isn't postmodernism, it's traditional philosophy and thus more to the modernist philosophy and less to postmodernism. Postmodernism is more to social philosophy, you know marxism, anarchism and social nature of construction of nature, I would like it if you'd even take the time to know what you're talking about.

Also I would like to criticize your stance on ontology as you're unaware that senses, from a philosophical stand point, are irrelevant and unreliable as there is no sufficient test or argument to be made on that side of the debate, unless someone comes up with a way to logically conclude, that this isn't just a dream/biv/any other existential example of how our senses could be unreliable, and thus not reliable. So unless you've come up with a solution that provides sufficient evidence that this world isn't just in my/your/our head(s) then start making one up to support your claims of self refutation. Also your hypothesis of how the senses provide us with concepts can be refuted with the same argument by saying that the concepts are just dreams or fed through a monitor in a vat.
Posted by Comeatmebruh666 5 months ago
Comeatmebruh666
Surgeon, I must say that epistemology and metaphysics isn't postmodernism, it's traditional philosophy and thus more to the modernist philosophy and less to postmodernism. Postmodernism is more to social philosophy, you know marxism, anarchism and social nature of construction of nature, I would like it if you'd even take the time to know what you're talking about.

Also I would like to criticize your stance on ontology as you're unaware that senses, from a philosophical stand point, are irrelevant and unreliable as there is no sufficient test or argument to be made on that side of the debate, unless someone comes up with a way to logically conclude, that this isn't just a dream/biv/any other existential example of how our senses could be unreliable, and thus not reliable. So unless you've come up with a solution that provides sufficient evidence that this world isn't just in my/your/our head(s) then start making one up to support your claims of self refutation. Also your hypothesis of how the senses provide us with concepts can be refuted with the same argument by saying that the concepts are just dreams or fed through a monitor in a vat.
Posted by Comeatmebruh666 5 months ago
Comeatmebruh666
Surgeon, I must say that epistemology and metaphysics isn't postmodernism, it's traditional philosophy and thus more to the modernist philosophy and less to postmodernism. Postmodernism is more to social philosophy, you know marxism, anarchism and social nature of construction of nature, I would like it if you'd even take the time to know what you're talking about.

Also I would like to criticize your stance on ontology as you're unaware that senses, from a philosophical stand point, are irrelevant and unreliable as there is no sufficient test or argument to be made on that side of the debate, unless someone comes up with a way to logically conclude, that this isn't just a dream/biv/any other existential example of how our senses could be unreliable, and thus not reliable. So unless you've come up with a solution that provides sufficient evidence that this world isn't just in my/your/our head(s) then start making one up to support your claims of self refutation. Also your hypothesis of how the senses provide us with concepts can be refuted with the same argument by saying that the concepts are just dreams or fed through a monitor in a vat.
Posted by Comeatmebruh666 5 months ago
Comeatmebruh666
Surgeon, I must say that epistemology and metaphysics isn't postmodernism, it's traditional philosophy and thus more to the modernist philosophy and less to postmodernism. Postmodernism is more to social philosophy, you know marxism, anarchism and social nature of construction of nature, I would like it if you'd even take the time to know what you're talking about.

Also I would like to criticize your stance on ontology as you're unaware that senses, from a philosophical stand point, are irrelevant and unreliable as there is no sufficient test or argument to be made on that side of the debate, unless someone comes up with a way to logically conclude, that this isn't just a dream/biv/any other existential example of how our senses could be unreliable, and thus not reliable. So unless you've come up with a solution that provides sufficient evidence that this world isn't just in my/your/our head(s) then start making one up to support your claims of self refutation. Also your hypothesis of how the senses provide us with concepts can be refuted with the same argument by saying that the concepts are just dreams or fed through a monitor in a vat.
Posted by Surgeon 6 months ago
Surgeon
I must admit my dis-taste for this kind of Post-Modernist deep skepticism. "Are the senses reliable" is just self refuting. The senses provide the percepts for the mind to form concepts, so if the senses are not reliable then neither are the concepts used to deny their reliability. This is an invalid position Con is taking. Taking his deep skepticism to its logical conclusion, means he cannot be sure about his own position. Pro wins by default already.
Posted by Ockham 6 months ago
Ockham
Con just refuted his own position by admitting that there are at least two absolute truths. If Pro picks up on that he will probably win.
Posted by canis 6 months ago
canis
There are "absolutes".. Truth is one of them. In fact only truth exist. "not truth" is only words..
Posted by Lilieze 6 months ago
Lilieze
1+1=2. That's an absolute truth.

This car is moving at 60 miles per hour. That's a relative truth.
This debate has 2 more rounds before the voting begins. If you want to receive email updates for this debate, click the Add to My Favorites link at the top of the page.