The Instigator
coolman
Pro (for)
Losing
21 Points
The Contender
joze14rock
Con (against)
Winning
24 Points

You are God, and I do not exist.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/14/2007 Category: Religion
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,803 times Debate No: 434
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (14)
Votes (15)

 

coolman

Pro

For the philosophers...

Okay, by 'God' I mean you are the creator and controller of the Universe, although you may not realize it. Consider this, all of your senses, thoughts, perceptions, and emotions are the result of neurological reactions to various stimuli. Therefore, it is not unreasonable to say that your "brain" creates these senses without you actually encountering them in a true, physical world. Everything you see, feel (emotionally and physically), smell, and hear, is nothing more than a product, or fabrication of your own mind, including me. Your computer, this website, this debate, and I have all been created by your mind to entertain itself. In your created reality, you will respond to this debate, and then you will fabricate my response in return. Just because you don't realize this is true doesn't mean you can prove it is false.

My [as if I exist, but I don't ;) ] hope for this debate is to produce arguments attempting to prove that this cannot be true. I will say this isn't possible, for everything you've ever read, heard, learned, and believed has just been a fabrication of your own mind.

And voters, don't vote based on your personal beliefs, rather vote on whether or not you think the responder has proven the statement wrong, as I have explained it in this opening argument.
joze14rock

Con

Oh what a splendid debate that you have started!!
Thought pattern that was so evident in the Matrix
You're whole argument is a classical Philosophical skeptical argument that the Ancient Greek Sophists loved to bust out. The fact of the matter is that there is no philosophical counter argument that totally refutes Skepticism because the skeptic (like you) doubts that this reply is not authentic because it is just a fabrication of my own mind. Everything that I am doing is made up through my mind alone, so it is as I'm my own mini god.
You, this computer I'm typing on, the room I live in, etc -> all does not exist. The only thing that really exists is me. Everything else, as you said, is a fabrication. This is your argument, also known as the Egocentric Predicament.
Egocentric Predicament: term coined by Ralph Barton Perry, is the problem of not being able to view reality outside of our own perceptions. All worldly knowledge takes the form of mental representations that our mind examines in different ways. Direct contact with reality cannot be made outside of our own minds; therefore, we cannot be sure reality even exists. There is no such thing as certainty
Now I'm going to outline my counterarguments to the Egocentric Predicament:
1) Limits to skepticism
2) Rene Descartes famous ‘Cogito ergo sum' ("I think therefore I am")
3) The brief argument on the support of an omnipotent God apart from our own mental will
I will spare people philosophical tangents. Many philosophers, like Kant and Locke, have great epistemological treatises that try their best to not necessarily refute skepticism, but prove that we exist in a world that is apart from ourselves.
I will speak pragmatically, and keep my philosophic confusions to a minimum.

1-
The reason why your whole argument is that of a skeptic is because you doubt existence and a world apart from oneself, even though human existence infers that we live in a world that is not subject to our own will.
A skeptic, like you, who doubts existence, ends up doubting every aspect of life. Pragmatically, doubting everything is just not realistic. If we doubted everything we come across, we wouldn't be able to live. I would wake up one day and ask myself, why should I get up? Why did I even go to sleep in the first place if it is purposeless? Why do I even want to live?
Furthermore, if the whole world was a fabrication of my mind, why would this fabrication fill itself with evils that sometimes suffer my fabricated well being?
In other words, if we say that the mind (or "my" mind, from the skeptical point of view) is what creates the world, then why does my mind create a world that actually damages my own mind? Why does my brain create such a painful emotional and mental fabrication like my girlfriend breaking up with me or being made fun of by others?
Logically, if my mind was the creator of everything, wouldn't it want to preserve itself? Realistically, emotional and mental trauma seems to do the opposite to the mind, leading of course to suicide. And of course the skeptic doubts everything in life, so it doubts life as well. So there is no purpose to live. Why don't we all just kill ourselves because life is good for nothing!! This is just not pragmatic.
"If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark. Dark would be a word without meaning." – (Mere Christianity by C.S Lewis)
Skepticism has major problems that if applied to our existence and world, we find out that we wouldn't be able to live. Thus, we should disregard the skeptical argument, and just take it as a given that WE DO EXIST. Now on to prove that a God exists apart from our mental capabilities.

2-
I think at this point I have shown that the skeptic ridicules human existence into a pit of meaninglessness. This is similar to what the famous French mathematician and philosopher Rene Descartes originally had to do so to ultimately prove that there is certainty. "I think therefore I am" is not necessarily an ontological statement though,
"He was concerned to discover some knowledge of real existence which could not be doubted under any conceivable circumstances. The cogito represented for him his first piece of certainty about existence, for it cannot be doubted, he held, without absurdity and contradiction. This certainty was intuitive, for, however much we explore and analyze the cogito, once it is understood it cannot seriously be doubted. If this is sound, the cogito at once vindicated Descartes method and established the possibility of that method being the key to additional real knowledge about existence, God, and nature. The singularity in thought is this: since the act of the mind is reflective, the cogito establishes, not my existence, but the knowledge of my existence… to say that I think and know that I think is to say that I am a thinking being at least; whatever else I may be is another matter." James Gordon Clapp
Descartes argues that the one thing we know for sure, that no skeptic or evil demon can take away, is the fact that we are a thinking thing, or substance. And by our thinking (or reason) we can understand that something is real separate from something else. In other words, their are things that exists that are not dependent on something else (refuting what the skeptic would say: the world is dependent of the mind)
"By substance, we can understand nothing else than a thing which so exists that it needs no other thing in order to exist." (Principles of Philosophy by Descartes) It is only evident that God satisfies this definition
In other words, to believe in an all powerful God is separate from our own human reason because our humanity cannot comprehend such grandness known as perfection.

3. At this point, all I must do is to give a brief argument for the existence of an omnipotent God. Keep in mind that philosophy cannot prove the existence of God, but can only show the possibility of His existence. I have already proved that God has to be apart from human reason only insofar that God is omnipotent and omniscient. God should be held to high regard, that is, a God beyond human comprehension. His essence, then, must be unknowable, insofar that if he was knowable he would be controllable. But God is omnipotent to the extent that He is not controlled and not controllable. (It's good to note: The Bible says that no one has ever seen God's face, so it should follow that the Biblical God is unknowable to the human mind; He is what He is -"I AM THAT I AM" – See Leo Strauss "Progress or Return"). Ultimately, to believe in something beyond our human comprehension is to have faith, and not wisdom, of his existence.

I think I'll end Round 1 with a splendid quote from Albert Einstein:
"A human being is part of a whole, called by us the Universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest--a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."
Debate Round No. 1
coolman

Pro

You said, "The fact of the matter is that there is no philosophical counter argument that totally refutes Skepticism." That sounds like you are AGREEING with my primary argument for which I've asked a dispute. Still I will go on to respond to your other arguments.

First of all, your quotes and your knowledge of history and philosophy are no good here, for they have all been created by your mind. Albert Einstein, Skepticism, Ancient Greece, Ralph Barton Perry, Rene Descartes, Kant and Locke, C.S. Lewis, James Gordon Clapp, Leo Strauss, the concept of an external and omniscient God, the Bible, even the movie The Matrix, are all figments of your own mind.

However, I will humor your arguments.

>>"If we doubted everything we come across, we wouldn't be able to live."

You are assuming that you, 'your own mini-God' as you stated, KNOW that you are just that. Obviously, you don't know this any more than you KNOW that an omniscient God is real. You don't doubt everything you come across, because you don't know that you are the creator of your reality.

>>"...why does my mind create a world that actually damages my own mind?"

Is this not the nature of the 'humans' in the world you have created anyway? People do things to hurt themselves all the time. They do drugs, they get angry, they hurt others, some inflict pain on themselves, others end their own lives. The reason for this is likely because this is too, the nature of your own mind which created them. As a parallel to your argument of an omniscient God, you create them in your own image. The mind isn't perfect, therefore neither is your world. Because you don't know WHY something is, doesn't mean it isn't. How many "Why"'s could you place against the concept of an omniscient God? Countless. Why did HE create the world? Why would HE create a world containing pain, anger, suffering? You don't know why, so why are you favoring that side of the argument?

>>"Logically, if my mind was the creator of everything, wouldn't it want to preserve itself?"

Again, you are assuming that your mind is aware of this.

>>"Descartes argues that the one thing we know for sure, that no skeptic or evil demon can take away, is the fact that we are a thinking thing, or substance."

Yes, you know that YOU are a thinking thing, or substance. But you cannot know that I am a thinking thing, or anyone/anything else for that matter. You do not KNOW anything beyond your own comprehension, so how does that prove anything. How can you make these 'separations', unless you want to claim to share consciousness with others.

>>"I think at this point I have shown that the skeptic ridicules human existence into a pit of meaninglessness."

You say that to be the creator of your world, you are the only meaningful being in it. Would you say, in regards to the concept of an external omniscient God, that type of God also carries out a meaningless existence. The Christian God for example? Is his existence meaningless? You can not say this about one idea without it also applying it to the other.

>>"Keep in mind that philosophy cannot prove the existence of God."

...Right...no more than it can prove that you are not the God of your own reality.

>>"God should be held to high regard, that is, a God beyond human comprehension."

Is the concept of being the God of your own world not beyond human comprehension as you know it?

>>"Ultimately, to believe in something beyond our human comprehension is to have faith, and not wisdom, of his existence."

Is it not possible to have faith in the belief that you are the creator of your reality?

--------------
Your remarks are intelligent and logical, and I appreciate the discussion. I still, however, don't believe that anything said can prove against the possibilty. I don't even think anything can be said that allows your concept of an external God carry's more weight.
joze14rock

Con

I see.
I must admit that I'm annoyed by the type of rhetoric you blabber out. But as a philosopher, it's a natural reaction because you, as a skeptic, make philosophy utterly pointless.

Now, I quoted authoritative people like C.S Lewis and Rene Descartes not to refute your argument but to show you that authoritative minds have challenged your type of skeptical argument.
But of course, what you believe, these authoritative minds are concoctions of my own mind.
Yet if the world only REALLY started at my birth then these people are really just contradictions of my own mind. It is as if my mind built this type of world to deceive me and make me believe that we are apart from the world (like in the Matrix) but my mind is also trying to hint to me that this is just a huge fabulation (through Descartes and C.S Lewis, furthermore even yourself!)

But fine, I will play your little game.
When I say that there is no counter argument against skepticism, that didn't mean that I am submitting to you, but rather I'm showing you the absolutely ludicrously determined mindset you have. For while you preach that all this is purposeless, you started this debate for a purpose of your own, that you claim, is a concoction of my own brain- which is all a contradiction.
You as a skeptic doubt everything, as according to what my brain created, and so my brain is a contradiction, like I said before.
Now that you have admitted that I am a "thinking thing" you must also understand that as a "thinking thing" their can be no such contradiction- reread Descartes argument.

But that's not important. Actually nothing is. Because everything doesn't matter. You still don't prove a purpose for me living as a skeptic. Actually, if you are trying to convince me to follow your point of view as a skeptic,
Then my brain is trying to make me something opposite than what it wants. Like I said before, it's a contradiction that leads to these kinds of troubling situations:
As a figment of my imagination, you should give a purpose for me to live!!
Or at least my Brain should give me purpose to live through different means, because If I die this whole world dies with it. And so then my brain has no relative meaning and probably dies with it.
Or I can say that after this life I just start another life because my brain creates another world for me, and so it doesn't matter. So I can just keep killing myself over and over, and I will be "reincarnated" each time into a new world that my brain made. So I'll kill myself over and over until my brain creates a world I like.
I would love to be Jessica Alba's panties!! Oh… but I can't because we have already established that I am a "thinking thing." So my brain must create me as a thinking thing every time so it guarantees its survival

Furthermore, just like the Big Bang has its troubling instigator, I can't help but wonder what, who, or how my brain became the ultimate creator of this world I live in.
Just like the Big Bang, something must have initiated the universe.
Unless we conclude that my Brain has always been. But we can't do that because this universe that my brain has concluded consists of time and space. But of course, my brain makes me believe that the Universe consists of time and space.
I think I have affectively disproved the Big Bang theory.
Yet, I still can't help but wonder how my brain started being. Maybe it has always been. Thus it will ALWAYS be. So that leads back to the Jessica Alba dilemma- I can kill myself infinite amounts of times till I come across a world I like!

I assume that life and living is the most important premise in this argument. Because, like you said, without it this world doesn't exist.
I, this world that I am in, don't assume that I'm my own mini-god.
I assume that the instigator of this world, as you say ‘my brain', is a mini-god. But MY own GOD-like brain seems to limit me in this world. And if my own God-like brain is a contradiction to myself in this world by limiting, then I can't be a "thinking thing" because everything has already been predestined. Being a "thinking thing" means that I have the ability to think on my own, but you as a skeptic would say that my brain makes me think that I have such ability. So I'm not really a "thinking thing"
Which you earlier admitted that we were:
"Yes, you know that YOU are a thinking thing, or substance"
No, actually I don't really know that I'm a thinking thing in this world.
But I can prove that I am, which again is another contradiction in this world that my God-like brain has created.

The quote from C.S Lewis then comes into effect:
"If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark. Dark would be a word without meaning."
If I knew that I was limited in this world, I should not have ever found out that my God-like Mind that created this world is unlimited, because there is no way to find that out in a skeptic's viewpoint!

I think its beneficial to MYSELF to have faith that I'm apart from the universe than the creator of the universe, because as human who would believe that my BRAIN is GOD then I can just manipulate these skeptical viewpoints, which is no way to pragmatically live. Like I said, I would love to be Jessica Alba's panties… let me think it and I'll be it.
The only way to make this world and existence meaningful is to take the viewpoint that we are apart from this world.
There is no successful way to totally refute skepticism. All one can do is show its complete foolishness, unreasonableness, irrationality, etc

And please don't mock me by saying you will "humor me"
Because the fact of the matter is that you are a hypocrite with just attempting to initiate this debate. A skeptic wouldn't care to follow this through.
Don't go through my arguments
Point by point-
Because in doing that, you are claiming that there is a possibility of a world apart from my own. But of course, my brain can be fooling me, in which it is a contradiction.
My very being is a contradiction so there is no purpose in living.

I'm going to go commit suicide right now…. Right.

Life and Living is the only way to disprove your skeptical argument, in which I have done.
Debate Round No. 2
coolman

Pro

It seems that you have taken an angry and defensive turn on me. And for that I apologize, it was not my intention to insult you. Allow me to clarify, by saying I would "humor" your side I wasn't trying to mock you or discredit your stance, rather I was just covering my tracks so that readers would not take my "suppose you are right" statements as my submission to you. It disappoints me that you have moved on to personal attacks, such as saying that the logic I "blabber out" is annoying, calling my stance in this debate "ridiculous", mocking me by calling my argument a "little game", and calling me a hypocrite in starting this debate because a hypocrite wouldn't care to follow it through.

For the record, I am not a skeptic. I am a Christian and I believe in God, Jesus Christ, Satan, Heaven, Hell, the whole bit. But I also enjoy logical, rhetorical, and philosophical questions. I am fascinated by the complexity and capabilities of the human mind, and therefore also fascinated by questions that are beyond human comprehension. I also make a conscious effort to be open minded to other ideas. I have seen too many people pursue a faith blindly, without any knowledge or consideration of the alternatives. My purpose of this debate was not to prove that Skepticism, as you call it, is TRUE, rather to prove that it is POSSIBLE and cannot be disproven. That is why in my opening argument I asked voters to vote based on THAT aspect of the debate rather than their personal beliefs. Because if I were to vote on this topic based on my beliefs of truth, I would vote against it. But, per my request in my opening argument, I would vote, despite my beliefs, that it is POSSIBLE. This is why in my second argument, I wasn't trying to force your submission to me, I was simply pointing at that you were agreeing with the very thing I asked someone to dispute, that "there is no successful way to totally refute skepticism." I had never intended to insult your argument. You obviously have sufficient knowledge of philosophy and religion. Your points were great reasons for someone to believe that skepticism is not true, but I will still hold that they are not reasons for someone to believe that it is not possible.

With all that said, I will continue with my final argument:

You continue to say that skepticism results in a purposeless existence. However, I again make the comparison between the idea of being your own god, or believing in an external God. What is God's purpose? Either way you look at it, can you define a purpose for God? If you are saying that a being that creates and controls its own world and has ultimate knowledge is purposeless, wouldn't that mean that an external God has no purpose either?

Also you continue to say that you can't be your own God because then you should be able to control time, space, events, and conjure up anything you desire at your whim. Still, you are assuming that you have knowledge of the nature of your being and assuming that's how it SHOULD be. You are basing that assumption on the common conception of an external God, and assuming that they should be the same. Why is it not possible that the nature of your being is different. It is as it is whether or not you know why. Maybe your quest to find proof of an external God is your mind's subconscious way of searching for an answer of its own existence.

As for your unusual, yet humorous Alba-panties argument, you again assume that your mind has a conscious choice and control over the world it creates.

(Sorry if I continue to go through each of your points and supply a counter-argument, but isn't that the purpose of a debate?)
Now with the Big Bang example, yes I agree it has its issues because by your comprehension something HAD to initiate it. What about an external God? When and how was He initiated? And if He is not limited by time - is and always was - then why can't this too be the nature of a 'self'-God that creates its own reality(ies). And I still think it's possible for you to be your own mini-God, not a separate being created by your brain. It must just not be the nature of your being to allow for limitless ability manipulate your reality. As for THIS reality you have created, it must have been the desire of your mind to create a realistic world. Because without placing limits on itself, its world would become utter chaos. Therefore, you yourself would still be a 'thinking thing.'

There is my final argument. Maybe your real argument with this debate is that you believe it is a waste of time and find me ignorant for posting it, because the POSSIBILITY of it is so obviously impossible to disprove.
joze14rock

Con

I want to first begin by deeply apologizing. Writing limits us as compared to speaking. I did not mean to be abrasive and rude. When I said that I'm utterly annoyed, I meant that any philosopher would be. It's just a natural reaction. I should have not used the word "blabber" for it does have negative connotation, I apologize.
And for the course of this debate you are a skeptic. I didn't mean who you really are, because you're right- I don't know you. But with what you told me, I have much deep respect at your inquiring for truth. I myself am a Christian as well and I do know what you mean that most people follow the faith blindly.
Now keep in mind, I don't call it Skepticism. It's the official Philosophical term that labels the stance you're taking in this debate.
No philosophical argument can fully overturn Skepticism. The only way to overturn Skepticism, which is the course I take in this debate, is not by philosophical means, but by pragmatic means. In other words, I'm showing that one can't live in the world of Skepticism (Jessica Alba's panties). I only used philosophy sparingly to merely support my stance (Descartes).
I apologize for sounding harsh and did not mean it to go that way. Please understand, as a philosopher, it is just a natural reaction I get when I face a skeptic in an argument, who can readily throw any philosophic argument out the window.
Final Argument:
Skepticism does result in a purposeless existence. For if I believe that my mind is the ultimate creator of this world then I can take advantage of such a belief. Like I said, I can kill myself infinite number of times till my God-like brain creates a world that I find satisfying (Jessica Alba's Panties). Or the other viewpoint, like I said earlier, if I kill myself right now then my brain might die as well, so this whole world would be destroyed as well and so everything would be meaningless. This is where my Descartes argument comes in where I argue that not all things are dependent on other things. For if this world is a concoction of my brain, then this world is dependent on my brain- which means that if I die, then this world dies with it and everything is meaningless. -> Either way, this is no way that human being can live from this skeptic point of view.
After a brief skirmish below with a commentator, I would like to reiterate that I merely wanted to show the POSSIBILITY of an external God and not argue necessarily for one in this debate. Now, when I argue for an external God I also argue for an Omnipotent, and thus Omniscient, God- meaning that this God is beyond human comprehension. And when I argue for this, it follows that we cannot understand this External Omnipotent God's purpose and plans. But it gives the possibility for this God to have a purpose for this Universe, if he is a creator and/or manager of this Universe.
Now what I say is that if my own God-like brain limits me in this world that it created for me, then I'm not a "thinking thing," as Descartes would call it. For a thinking thing is not limited by contradiction (as the God-like brain would be in limiting me in this world but make feel that I am ultimately free) or restriction (my God-like Brain that created this world for me determines everything for me, including my thoughts). Arguing for an external God does allow for contradiction, only if He were omnipotent (for we can never understand things beyond our comprehension) and an external God can allow restriction (laws of nature, physics, time, etc).
I don't say that I, in this world, will be able to control time, space, events, etc, but my God-mind would be able to. But if that is the case then there is a contradiction – while my brain is ultimately God-like, this world limits my brain – which I just stated above, cannot happen.
You're right, I'm ASSUMING that my Brain is God-like. And if take this assumption (skeptical viewpoint) and make it a lifestyle, I end up dying- so thus living as a skeptic is no real way to live (e.g. Jessica Alba's Panties). As for believing in an external omnipotent God, I can readily say that I can never understand what God has in plan for me until after the fact (as most Christians would say). Keep in mind there is no such quest for me to find proof of an external God. I have no quest, I merely have faith that one exists. (This of course is another debate) Wisdom, Philosophy, Logic etc cannot prove the existence of an omnipotent God. Faith is the only thing that can. So, you can say as a skeptic, that my God-like brain gave me false faith to believe in an external God- which again is another contradiction between my God-like brain and myself in this world, which cannot happen.
I assume that my God-like Brain has control over the world it creates, not myself in this world it created for me- because obviously I don't have control over this world. Hell, if I did, then I would use my powers to have Jessica Alba in front of me naked right now! The assumption I take though, is the fact that my God-like Brain has control over this world. And if that's the case, I can manipulate that control. I can kill myself right now and hope for a better life next time my God-like brain creates a world for me (assuming that my death in this world doesn't lead to an ultimate destruction of my God-like brain as well).
It's like blackmail.
I think my main and overarching point that I believe voters will side with me on is that no one person can live as a skeptic. Living as a skeptic will lead to these ludicrous assumptions that I can kill myself infinite amounts of times or that I can manipulate my God-like brain so I can have the life I want. I can readily commit suicide right now if truly grasped Skepticism. Now a brief answering of the question you raised- The reason why an infinite existing God-like brain is not possible is exactly what links back to the C.S Lewis quote. If my brain created a world every time I died, I should be able to understand what perfection is. Because perfection is not something apart from this world (external God) but IS this world, if we assume that my God-like brain is infinite existing. By that assumption, I should be able to understand perfection by just studying how the world is constructed. But that's not the realistic case, and man (or "me") don't know what perfection is and just grasp an inference of what it can be. St. Augustine's famous inference of the Divine (Just think of the Pythagorean Therom- we can't see a2+b2=c2, but we can conceptualize it).
If it was the "desire of my mind to create a realistic world" for me, then it is in contradiction with who I am in this world. My God-like mind may have wanted to create a realistic world for me, but who I am in this world does not want to live in this realistic world. If I had the power right now I would end this world's hunger, stop global warming, give money to all people, etc.
My argument of contradiction is that my mind did not create this world because their can be NO contradiction between a God-like mind and me in this world- in which there is if you argue as a skeptic. And I would not be a "thinking thing" because I would be limited in what I think because my God-like brain tells me what to think in this world. As Descartes argued, a thinking thing is not restricted in his thoughts.
I do believe it's a waste of time, no offense. Because if I lived as a skeptic I would just kill myself. You are not a true skeptic, but argue as one. And so in that case, I don't believe you fully grasp how it is like to BE a skeptic.
"When one admits that nothing is certain one must, I think, also admit that some things are much more nearly certain than others... Certainly there are degrees of certainty, and one should be very careful to emphasize that fact, because otherwise one is landed in an utter skepticism, and complete skepticism would, of course, be totally barren and completely useless"
-Bertrand Russell
Debate Round No. 3
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by candice 8 years ago
candice
Wonderful debate! Hopefully people truely read, and take in the argument's before voting... and don't have a preconceived notion of the victor.
Posted by mdb2290 9 years ago
mdb2290
This seems fairly easy for "con" to win. The point of a debate is to convince others that your arguments are best. You do not need to convince yourself. In other words, the only proof you need is to point out that each person reading this debate, and even the "pro" debater has knowledge that they are not the figment of another's imagination (which is why this is perplexing to all of us). I don't need to believe that my mind is not omnipotent, it's impossible, but to win all you need to do is point out that everyone reading this debate knows my mind is not omnipotent. (even though they can't prove theirs is not) A bit confusing, but I hope you all get the point.
Posted by joze14rock 9 years ago
joze14rock
aremisasling:
I appreciate your honesty and sincerity. Their are people out there who can present A WAY better case against skepticism than I can. The academic theologians and philosophers who have being doing this for decades could destroy me in such a debate.
I will not lie, my personal convictions with my religion influenced my line of rhetoric, and thus omnipotent God argument. But I understand that such argument isn't universal, so i tried to brush it away through the debate but my opponent kept bringing it up, which I personally had no problem with. But i made sure to minimize that argument as much as I could.

Again thanks for the feedback and I apologize for any rudeness and abrassiveness. I tend to get excited in a heated debate.
Posted by aremisasling 9 years ago
aremisasling
I never said your argument hinged on an omnipotent god. I just happened to object to that particular assertion and though the comment section an appropriate place for such an objection. Your arguments are well-researched and well-founded and despite my reservations on the omnipotent god portion of the early part of the debate(especially since it wasn't the cornerstone of the debate), I'm actually voting on your behalf as you make a good case. As an amateur I'd need a desk reference set to keep up with your citations as many of my friends studied philosophy and religion at an academic level, but I did so only as a personal interest and at not nearly so deep a level. On the Descartes line as well as likely several others I'll humbly admit defeat. My apologies for letting my own emotions get out of hand.

Aremis
Posted by joze14rock 9 years ago
joze14rock
Just because this is a classic "textbook philosophical argument" doesn't mean that this debate should follow a strictly philosophical route.
And my opponent, by inference of the third round he posted, doesn't even know what a philosophical skeptic is. No my opponent was not looking for such a philosophic argument, and so vote me down or whatever, i don't care.
And how many times do I have to say this: My arguments do not exclusively focus on the existance of an omnipotent God.
I also argued that one can't live life if one is a skeptic of his own existence! That, I would say, is the forefront argument I present (Jessica Alba's panties... hello?)
Not the existence of God. So please leave me alone about that. Disregard that argument, whatever.
And okay, if you disagree with Descartes and his reference to God. But I must say that I quoted directly from a renown scholar, so debate with him about it, and also keep in mind Descartes himself was a devout Christian and refined his philosophical ideas around the Christian God.
YOU DO NEED A GOD IN THIS CONTEXT. Please read Descartes. Please, before I go philosophical on your as*
I do appreciate your comments. Don't get me wrong. I just don't know what you want me to say? I disagree and I do believe a brief prooving of an omnipotent God was necessary, but I didn't revolve the debate around that.
An omnipotent God would mean he is beyond our comprehension, so if my Brain is a creator-God, why would my brain limit me in this world in knowing such power- that is where my contradiction argument comes in which I link to Descartes who says that thinking thing can't contradict. <- THIS OF COURSE IS A SHREWD SYNOPSIS OVER MY ARGUMENT, so please don't get me wrong.

I think it would just be better if you called me dumb if you don't understand it.
Posted by aremisasling 9 years ago
aremisasling
Being as it is a textbook philosophical argument, I would say this is within the pervue of philosophy. From what I gather of what he has said so far, I expect your opponent was looking for such an argument. I still think a god of any kind is irrelevant here as you've made no case as to why the addition of a god helps your argument in any way.

I object to the Descartes quote because it doesn't say anything about a God or even imply it. It simply states that he disagrees with the idea that we create the universe in our minds by saying that other things exist without relying on outside forces. God doesn't come into it at all. I don't even really care to debate the existance of God, I merely wanted to point out that you don't need a god in this context. Regardless of whether or not you think it works better or even if you can prove it, it doesn't matter to this debate until it becomes an integral part of the proof, which it isn't. It doesn't help or hurt your case, it just makes an unnecessary reference to a deity.

I do see that your argument has gone a different direction in later discussion. I brought it up in comments becase I thought it needed to be said. As a commenter and not a debater in this instance it is not my duty to refute the latest argument, merely comment on what I feel needs saying. I didn't even have to say anything material in comments, I couldn've said 'you're dumb' or something banal like everyone else on the net. I jsut decided to actually bring up something that was said.
Posted by Darth_Grievous_42 9 years ago
Darth_Grievous_42
I think you did steal this from Fenrir. But it is much more indebth.
Posted by joze14rock 9 years ago
joze14rock
And you're wrong
I quote C.S Lewis
because he's the most pragmatic thinker that I could think of at this moment.
If I started referencing Kant's Categorical Imperative or going to Hegel's view of History,
then I end up going on philosophical tangents where people wouldn't want to read it (That's why I kept Descartes limited).

C.S Lewis is not a philosopher. Nor do I claim that he is. But he says things that all people will understand- and all can either disagree or agree.

I never claim that this debate is a philosophical argument. Most people don't live in the world of philosophy.

"Both myth and science consider everyday experience to be lacking inteligibility in its own terms. Most of us are able to get along in the world by ignoring about fifty percent of it and concentrating on those things which fall into place. Neither the poets nor the scientists can live in such a world."
- Robert D. Sacks
(Commentary on the Book of Genesis)

Their is a limit to philosophy. You can only question so much before you just look like a fool to regular people.
Posted by joze14rock 9 years ago
joze14rock
Well i disagree. I do believe that arguing for the existance of an omnipotent God, apart from ourselves, (not Creator God) is important for this debate.
Their is a huge difference between an omnipotent God and a "creator God", as you like to call it.
Omnipotent God means He is all powerful, and thus all-knowing, but that doesn't necessarily mean that he created the universe
(This is what most free lance Deists, like Thomas Jefferson, believed).

I'm not trying to prove the existence of God, i'm just trying to disprove that my Brain is not God. My quote from Descartes, as I said in the second round, was not suppose to refute his argument but show the possibility of a God apart from ourselves.
Keep in mind my arguments are not exclusively focused on proving the existance of an omnipotent God~! Please reread my second round reply.

I didn't mean to sound like I contradicted myself. Keep in mind i'm writting this in a rush while I organized my thoughts for my 3rd and final round.
What I said is that this Omnipotent God can work outside of time, but doesn't. He follows the rules of nature (Spinoza) and so doesn't tamper with time, EXCEPT for the exception of Miracles (which Spinoza disagrees that their is such thing, while I do believe their are such times that God does break the laws of nature- miracles)
I just have to give the example of a Ressurecting Body in the New Testament.
No, i'm not going to write a whole paper for you saying why an Omnipotent God is preferred over you "elegant view." If you would like to start a debate over it and challenge me, please feel free to do so.
I'm just giving you a brief argument for why an omnipotent God is preferred.

I do believe that their is a huge difference between Philosophy and the Bible. The Bible is not a philosophical book. Nor does it claim to be. Philosophy teaches autonomous understanding while the Bible teaches obedient love. (Leo Strauss "Progress or Return"
Posted by aremisasling 9 years ago
aremisasling
I believe if you read the statement of intent the debate is NOT over wether or not there is a creator god outside of ourselves, merely that we are a creator god.

I posted on the existence of God expressly for the fact that arguing for the existence of a God outside of us is actually irrelevant to the discussion unless the existence of that outside God provides some additional information that merely disproving that we are God does not. I don't believe your argument does and I posted a statement that challenges it's relevance based on an alternative explanation.

Your quote by Descartes about showing that we can observe things whose existance is not dependant on other things is a good refutation to the original statement, but a bad proof of god. It only shows that other things don't need us to exist.

In answer to your reply to me, you have contradicted yourself. You state that God follows his own laws including time, but reference an article that expressly discusses the necessity of him to act outside of the rules of time. In addition, the referenced Spinoza Treatise still does not answer how a God, inside or outside of time, makes any more sense than a universe that can do the same.

And to top it all off, both sources use scripture as their primary source and do not appeal directly to reason or observation. That is all fine and good if scripture was universally accepted as the foundation for all philosophical discussion or if we were discussing specifically views of the Abrahamic faiths on the subject, but the very nature of this debate suggests, nay demands, that neither are assumed in this case.

I think you'll find that CS Lewis is not generally viewed in the philosophic world at large as an authoritative source. My hunch is that you just reference these works because you assume no one will go through the trouble of actually reading them.
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