The Instigator
Rational_Thinker9119
Pro (for)
Winning
9 Points
The Contender
delgadojustin2146
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

We Cannot Be 100% Certain That There Is An External World Beyond Experience And Perception

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Rational_Thinker9119
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/20/2013 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 857 times Debate No: 42723
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (6)
Votes (2)

 

Rational_Thinker9119

Pro

The resolution is straight forward. First round for acceptance; no argument.
delgadojustin2146

Con

Are you saying we can't know anything for sure since it's all subjective? Also if you are saying that you are only limited to your own perception, how would you know that since you cannot transcend your own perception? And if you are only limited to your own perception how can you give an account for anybody else's perception?
Debate Round No. 1
Rational_Thinker9119

Pro


Introduction


The first round was just supposed to be for acceptance, not for arguments or questioning. However, I will respond to my
opponent's concerns


Addressing My Opponent's Concerns


"Are you saying we can't know anything for sure since it's all subjective?"


I will explain what I mean in further detail in the next section.


"Also if you are saying that you are only limited to your own perception, how would you know that since you cannot transcend your own perception?"


Why would I have to transcend my own perception to know that? This doesn't seem required at all.


"And if you are only limited to your own perception how can you give an account for anybody else's perception?"


We can't know 100% whether or not whether anybody else exists. I could just be a figment of your imagination, as could
everyone else on here. However, this doesn't effect the resolution sufficiently. Regardless, there are certain arguments that suggests other minds. For example, the argument from language. This presupposes someone else to communicate with. The very fact that we are using language presupposes other minds. Also, every time I raise what seems to be an arm to eat, consciousness is behind it. If I see another arm moving that way, this suggests there is consciousness behind that person. This doesn't mean it is 100%, but still reasonable to believe.


My Argument


Perception is something that cannot be an illusion. As Descartes said:


"I think, therefore I am"


Even if everything you perceive is an illusion, the fact that you perceive cannot be.


The reason nothing can be known beyond perception is simple. If you think you are experiencing a TV show, that doesn't prove there is a TV. It proves that there is a perception of a TV. When you touch it, you have a feeling of a TV, and a sensation of something solid, but that doesn't prove there is something solid. It would be a non-sequitur to say that because you have a perception of X, that therefore, X exists.

When you dream , you have perceptions of lots of things that don't exist. I have had perceptions of mountains which my mind just conjured up. Who is to say the external world isn't a dream?

We have no way of knowing. The fact that we have no way of knowing is illustrated by this picture:



If you see, touch, smell, taste, feel in any other way, or/ and hear a candle; that only proves a perception of a candle. There is no way to know that any candle exists, or any other external object with 100% certainty.

The resolution has been established.
delgadojustin2146

Con

What is your standard of truth?
Debate Round No. 2
Rational_Thinker9119

Pro

The question should pertain to a standard of knowledge. This could be either a priori knowledge, a posteriori knowledge ect...
delgadojustin2146

Con

delgadojustin2146 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Rational_Thinker9119

Pro

My opponent forfeited the last round. All arguments extended..
delgadojustin2146

Con

delgadojustin2146 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by dtaylor971 3 years ago
dtaylor971
THis one is going to interesting.
Posted by delgadojustin2146 3 years ago
delgadojustin2146
Yes we can be absolutely sure of things. To say we can't you'd have to be absolutely sure of that. You'd end up saying, " I'm absolutely sure that we cannot be absolutely sure." That wouldn't make sense.
Posted by Rational_Thinker9119 3 years ago
Rational_Thinker9119
Well, of course we can all be sure of one thing; we experience. Even if everything we experience is an illusion, the fact that we experience cannot be.
Posted by dtaylor971 3 years ago
dtaylor971
Only a noob would accept this debate. Can anyone ever be 100% sure about anything, even one's own existence?

Anyway, I'll keep an eye on this debate. Seems interesting.
Posted by Rational_Thinker9119 3 years ago
Rational_Thinker9119
I am arguing in favor of the notion that the resolution is true. We cannot know there is anything beyond our perception and experience. The only thing we know exists for sure is consciousness.
Posted by SocietyChanger 3 years ago
SocietyChanger
What is the argument and what side are you representing? I'm a bit confused.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by NightofTheLivingCats 3 years ago
NightofTheLivingCats
Rational_Thinker9119delgadojustin2146Tied
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by MassiveDump 3 years ago
MassiveDump
Rational_Thinker9119delgadojustin2146Tied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Derp.