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In Defense of Idealism

dylancatlow
Posts: 12,243
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5/5/2015 1:13:40 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
Idealism rejects the notion that epistemology and ontology can even by tentatively separated on the grounds that reality is mental to whatever extent we can meaningfully refer to it. The distinction between a "mental" and "non-mental" reality is indeed meaningless, for both are embedded in our cognitive processes (are identical to their mental descriptions) and thus mental. One might be tempted to object that there's no reason to think the "true" reality is knowable to us at all. However, this is not a valid argument. First, "reality" is totally comprehensive by definition, which means we can be sure we've left nothing out, including any supposed "noumenal (true) reality". Since "reality" is theory, everything which is real is obviously part of that theory, and thus mental. You can't claim that the definition of reality is flawed without referring to it and thus establishing its definition. Second, even if we cannot directly refer to "non-mental" aspects of reality, we can be sure they would possess the property "existence", and since "existence" is mentally defined, everything is necessarily mental.
ShabShoral
Posts: 3,228
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5/5/2015 1:14:37 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/5/2015 1:13:40 AM, dylancatlow wrote:
Idealism rejects the notion that epistemology and ontology can even by tentatively separated on the grounds that reality is mental to whatever extent we can meaningfully refer to it. The distinction between a "mental" and "non-mental" reality is indeed meaningless, for both are embedded in our cognitive processes (are identical to their mental descriptions) and thus mental. One might be tempted to object that there's no reason to think the "true" reality is knowable to us at all. However, this is not a valid argument. First, "reality" is totally comprehensive by definition, which means we can be sure we've left nothing out, including any supposed "noumenal (true) reality". Since "reality" is theory, everything which is real is obviously part of that theory, and thus mental. You can't claim that the definition of reality is flawed without referring to it and thus establishing its definition. Second, even if we cannot directly refer to "non-mental" aspects of reality, we can be sure they would possess the property "existence", and since "existence" is mentally defined, everything is necessarily mental.

If idealism is true, what you just said is just what you think.
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dylancatlow
Posts: 12,243
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5/5/2015 1:16:18 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 5/5/2015 1:14:37 AM, ShabShoral wrote:
At 5/5/2015 1:13:40 AM, dylancatlow wrote:
Idealism rejects the notion that epistemology and ontology can even by tentatively separated on the grounds that reality is mental to whatever extent we can meaningfully refer to it. The distinction between a "mental" and "non-mental" reality is indeed meaningless, for both are embedded in our cognitive processes (are identical to their mental descriptions) and thus mental. One might be tempted to object that there's no reason to think the "true" reality is knowable to us at all. However, this is not a valid argument. First, "reality" is totally comprehensive by definition, which means we can be sure we've left nothing out, including any supposed "noumenal (true) reality". Since "reality" is theory, everything which is real is obviously part of that theory, and thus mental. You can't claim that the definition of reality is flawed without referring to it and thus establishing its definition. Second, even if we cannot directly refer to "non-mental" aspects of reality, we can be sure they would possess the property "existence", and since "existence" is mentally defined, everything is necessarily mental.

If idealism is true, what you just said is just what you think.

Idealism =/= solipsism, as you know. But thanks for your consideration.