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The "Problem of Logic"

Cody_Franklin
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3/23/2010 3:18:17 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I was sitting in German class today, and I was rather bored; so, I worked on developing an argument against the idea of God's existence that I'd used in a couple of previous debates, and I tried to expand it into a syllogism. Some of the premises are probably redundant/unnecessary, and I'm sure that it's probably just a "big picture" version of all other arguments against God (not to mention that I'm sure some famous philosopher has already "used" it); but, all of that notwithstanding:

1. The laws of logic are a priori true: A is A, A can't be ~ A, and something must either be A or ~A.
2. The laws of logic, being inexorable facts of reality, cannot b ignored, avoided, or overridden.
3. :. Anything which exists in reality is bound by the laws of logic.
4. To be able to interact with men, God must exist in reality if he does exist.
5. :. If God exists, he is subject to the laws of logic; for example, God is God.
6. If God exists, he must be omnipotent; that is, he must have unlimited power and authority.
7. God cannot ignore, avoid, or override the laws of logic.
8. :. God's power is defined by the facts of reality, limiting his powers to the logically possible (see: Paradox of the Stone).
9. :. God's possible range of action is limited by a higher authority (either the laws themselves, or the creator thereof; the latter, though, suggests infinite regression).
10. :. God cannot be omnipotent.
11. :. God cannot exist.

It probably needs a bit of fine-tuning, but eh. Discuss anyway.
mongeese
Posts: 5,387
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3/23/2010 3:22:42 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
The main problem is Point 6: you assume that God must be omnipotent, and then assume a definition of omnipotence that you cannot actually verify.
You mostly just rewrote the Problem of the Stone in a more complicated fashion.
Xer
Posts: 7,776
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3/23/2010 3:23:24 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Basically the omnipotence paradox.

It's pretty easy to refute this, as theists on this site have done it many times before.
FREEDO
Posts: 21,057
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3/23/2010 3:29:25 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:23:24 PM, Nags wrote:
Basically the omnipotence paradox.

It's pretty easy to refute this, as theists on this site have done it many times before.

They have tried.
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
FREEDO
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3/23/2010 3:30:42 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I think what you have here is sound except only if your definition of God is that he must be omnipotent.
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
Reasoning
Posts: 4,456
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3/23/2010 3:32:46 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Thomas Aquinas had a narrower conception of omnipotence. According to Aquinas, God is able to do anything possible; he can part the red sea, and he can restore the dead to life, but he cannot violate the laws of logic and mathematics.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
Reasoning
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3/23/2010 3:34:08 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:22:42 PM, mongeese wrote:
The main problem is Point 6: you assume that God must be omnipotent, and then assume a definition of omnipotence that you cannot actually verify.
You mostly just rewrote the Problem of the Stone in a more complicated fashion.

Not so. God can surely create a stone which he would then be unable to lift. He cannot however make 2+2=5.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
mongeese
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3/23/2010 3:38:17 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:34:08 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:22:42 PM, mongeese wrote:
The main problem is Point 6: you assume that God must be omnipotent, and then assume a definition of omnipotence that you cannot actually verify.
You mostly just rewrote the Problem of the Stone in a more complicated fashion.

Not so. God can surely create a stone which he would then be unable to lift. He cannot however make 2+2=5.

No, God cannot create a stone which he would be unable to lift. After all, what characteristic of the rock could possibly make it unable to be lifted by God? Its mass? The rock would have to have beyond infinite mass, a mass that isn't even a mass, but a supermass, for God to be unable to lift it. Such a rock cannot exist.
mongeese
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3/23/2010 3:39:18 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:29:25 PM, FREEDO wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:23:24 PM, Nags wrote:
Basically the omnipotence paradox.

It's pretty easy to refute this, as theists on this site have done it many times before.

They have tried.

And succeeded. From where do you conclude, from the myraid definitions avaliable for "omnipotent," that omnipotence includes the ability to alter logic?
Reasoning
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3/23/2010 3:42:14 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:38:17 PM, mongeese wrote:
No, God cannot create a stone which he would be unable to lift. After all, what characteristic of the rock could possibly make it unable to be lifted by God? Its mass? The rock would have to have beyond infinite mass, a mass that isn't even a mass, but a supermass, for God to be unable to lift it. Such a rock cannot exist.

Why can't God create a stone and simultaneously remove his ability to lift it? After all, the omnipotence of God is merely an empirical fact, not a law of logic and therefore as an omnipotent being he must be able to create a stone which he cannot lift.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
mongeese
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3/23/2010 3:45:26 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:42:47 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Well, my problem is, if God cannot change/alter the laws of logic, then he certainly didn't create them. This begs the question, from where did these laws originate?

You yourself stated that the laws of logic are a priori true. I guess I could compare it to computer programming: even though almost all of the rules for the program can be written by the programmer, a bit still cannot be both 1 and 0 at the same time.
Reasoning
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3/23/2010 3:48:59 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:42:47 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Well, my problem is, if God cannot change/alter the laws of logic, then he certainly didn't create them. This begs the question, from where did these laws originate?

They didn't originate from anywhere. It isn't like they actually exist in some strange platonic form.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
Cody_Franklin
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3/23/2010 3:49:48 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:45:26 PM, mongeese wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:42:47 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Well, my problem is, if God cannot change/alter the laws of logic, then he certainly didn't create them. This begs the question, from where did these laws originate?

You yourself stated that the laws of logic are a priori true. I guess I could compare it to computer programming: even though almost all of the rules for the program can be written by the programmer, a bit still cannot be both 1 and 0 at the same time.

Right. If these laws exist independent of God, and define the range of action available to God, it's fair to assert that their authority supersedes the authority of God.
Cody_Franklin
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3/23/2010 3:51:16 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:48:59 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:42:47 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Well, my problem is, if God cannot change/alter the laws of logic, then he certainly didn't create them. This begs the question, from where did these laws originate?

They didn't originate from anywhere. It isn't like they actually exist in some strange platonic form.

That's the point I'm making. They didn't just pop up out of thin air, and God can't alter them. They're just facts of reality.
mongeese
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3/23/2010 3:51:57 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:49:48 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:45:26 PM, mongeese wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:42:47 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Well, my problem is, if God cannot change/alter the laws of logic, then he certainly didn't create them. This begs the question, from where did these laws originate?

You yourself stated that the laws of logic are a priori true. I guess I could compare it to computer programming: even though almost all of the rules for the program can be written by the programmer, a bit still cannot be both 1 and 0 at the same time.

Right. If these laws exist independent of God, and define the range of action available to God, it's fair to assert that their authority supersedes the authority of God.

True. Except abstract laws don't have authority.
Reasoning
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3/23/2010 3:52:24 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:49:48 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Right. If these laws exist independent of God, and define the range of action available to God, it's fair to assert that their authority supersedes the authority of God.

The laws of logic do not exist, per se. There does not exist somewhere some form known as the law of identity that supersedes the power of God.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
Cody_Franklin
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3/23/2010 3:54:24 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:52:24 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:49:48 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Right. If these laws exist independent of God, and define the range of action available to God, it's fair to assert that their authority supersedes the authority of God.

The laws of logic do not exist, per se. There does not exist somewhere some form known as the law of identity that supersedes the power of God.

Again, right. It's not a tangible form. It's merely a fact that the actions of God cannot contradict. God cannot create a situation in which A is also ~A. They're binding facts outside of which God cannot operate.
wjmelements
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3/23/2010 3:55:07 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:42:47 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Well, my problem is, if God cannot change/alter the laws of logic, then he certainly didn't create them. This begs the question, from where did these laws originate?

Human conception. They are abstract.
in the blink of an eye you finally see the light
Cody_Franklin
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3/23/2010 3:56:11 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:51:57 PM, mongeese wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:49:48 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:45:26 PM, mongeese wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:42:47 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Well, my problem is, if God cannot change/alter the laws of logic, then he certainly didn't create them. This begs the question, from where did these laws originate?

You yourself stated that the laws of logic are a priori true. I guess I could compare it to computer programming: even though almost all of the rules for the program can be written by the programmer, a bit still cannot be both 1 and 0 at the same time.

Right. If these laws exist independent of God, and define the range of action available to God, it's fair to assert that their authority supersedes the authority of God.

True. Except abstract laws don't have authority.

Only in the sense that they aren't "enforced", even though you could probably say that the laws of logic are "self-enforcing", given that one cannot act contrary to them, even if one is an almighty deity. Whether you say that they have more power/authority/whatever is irrelevant; my point is, the laws of logic seem to have God "one-upped", in the sense that God has no control over them.
Cody_Franklin
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3/23/2010 3:57:24 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:55:07 PM, wjmelements wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:42:47 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Well, my problem is, if God cannot change/alter the laws of logic, then he certainly didn't create them. This begs the question, from where did these laws originate?

Human conception. They are abstract.

The facts of reality aren't contingent on human conception. A would be A even if humans had not made that discovery.
Cerebral_Narcissist
Posts: 10,806
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3/23/2010 3:57:51 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:18:17 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
I was sitting in German class today, and I was rather bored; so, I worked on developing an argument against the idea of God's existence that I'd used in a couple of previous debates, and I tried to expand it into a syllogism. Some of the premises are probably redundant/unnecessary, and I'm sure that it's probably just a "big picture" version of all other arguments against God (not to mention that I'm sure some famous philosopher has already "used" it); but, all of that notwithstanding:

1. The laws of logic are a priori true: A is A, A can't be ~ A, and something must either be A or ~A.
2. The laws of logic, being inexorable facts of reality, cannot b ignored, avoided, or overridden.
3. :. Anything which exists in reality is bound by the laws of logic.
4. To be able to interact with men, God must exist in reality if he does exist.

Flaw one. Not all religions subscribe to an interventionist God.

5. :. If God exists, he is subject to the laws of logic; for example, God is God.
: 6. If God exists, he must be omnipotent; that is, he must have unlimited power and authority.

Flaw two, though most, maybe all monotheistic religions claim that God is omnipotent, a subjective claim is not objective truth. There is no logical requirement for God to be all powerful. This also ignores the issue of Gods, who are seldom claimed to be all be omnipotent.

7. God cannot ignore, avoid, or override the laws of logic.
8. :. God's power is defined by the facts of reality, limiting his powers to the logically possible (see: Paradox of the Stone).
9. :. God's possible range of action is limited by a higher authority (either the laws themselves, or the creator thereof; the latter, though, suggests infinite regression).
10. :. God cannot be omnipotent.
11. :. God cannot exist.

It probably needs a bit of fine-tuning, but eh. Discuss anyway.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
MTGandP
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3/23/2010 3:59:59 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
God can surely create a stone which he would then be unable to lift. He cannot however make 2+2=5.

But God can do anything that is physically possible, as you said. So that means God can lift this rock, which means that he actually cannot create a rock which he would then be unable to lift.
Cody_Franklin
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3/23/2010 4:01:53 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:57:51 PM, Cerebral_Narcissist wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:18:17 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
I was sitting in German class today, and I was rather bored; so, I worked on developing an argument against the idea of God's existence that I'd used in a couple of previous debates, and I tried to expand it into a syllogism. Some of the premises are probably redundant/unnecessary, and I'm sure that it's probably just a "big picture" version of all other arguments against God (not to mention that I'm sure some famous philosopher has already "used" it); but, all of that notwithstanding:

1. The laws of logic are a priori true: A is A, A can't be ~ A, and something must either be A or ~A.
2. The laws of logic, being inexorable facts of reality, cannot b ignored, avoided, or overridden.
3. :. Anything which exists in reality is bound by the laws of logic.
4. To be able to interact with men, God must exist in reality if he does exist.

Flaw one. Not all religions subscribe to an interventionist God.

The "intervention" part of it was more for decoration. Not a necessary part of the overall argument.


5. :. If God exists, he is subject to the laws of logic; for example, God is God.
: 6. If God exists, he must be omnipotent; that is, he must have unlimited power and authority.

Flaw two, though most, maybe all monotheistic religions claim that God is omnipotent, a subjective claim is not objective truth. There is no logical requirement for God to be all powerful. This also ignores the issue of Gods, who are seldom claimed to be all be omnipotent.

The omnipotence I'm essentially referring to has little to do with actual "power". It's more geared toward the idea of having boundless authority. If a God isn't omnipotent in the sense of having ultimate control, what kind of "deity" is it anyway?

And, for the most part, I was dealing with the Christian God, and similar monotheistic deities. I'm sure the overall argument could be molded to fit polytheism.

7. God cannot ignore, avoid, or override the laws of logic.
8. :. God's power is defined by the facts of reality, limiting his powers to the logically possible (see: Paradox of the Stone).
9. :. God's possible range of action is limited by a higher authority (either the laws themselves, or the creator thereof; the latter, though, suggests infinite regression).
10. :. God cannot be omnipotent.
11. :. God cannot exist.

It probably needs a bit of fine-tuning, but eh. Discuss anyway.
Cody_Franklin
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3/23/2010 4:03:31 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:59:59 PM, MTGandP wrote:
God can surely create a stone which he would then be unable to lift. He cannot however make 2+2=5.

But God can do anything that is physically possible, as you said. So that means God can lift this rock, which means that he actually cannot create a rock which he would then be unable to lift.

Right. Which means that God's powers and abilities are limited to the realm of the logically possible.
mongeese
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3/23/2010 4:14:47 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 4:03:31 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:59:59 PM, MTGandP wrote:
God can surely create a stone which he would then be unable to lift. He cannot however make 2+2=5.

But God can do anything that is physically possible, as you said. So that means God can lift this rock, which means that he actually cannot create a rock which he would then be unable to lift.

Right. Which means that God's powers and abilities are limited to the realm of the logically possible.

Except, there is nothing outside of the realm of the logically possible. It's not really binding if it has no real barriers.
mongoose
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3/23/2010 4:15:43 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
The problem is your definition of omnipotence. A better definition is that one is bound only by the rules of logic. This solves everything.
It is odd when one's capacity for compassion is measured not in what he is willing to do by his own time, effort, and property, but what he will force others to do with their own property instead.
popculturepooka
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3/23/2010 4:16:58 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 4:14:47 PM, mongeese wrote:
At 3/23/2010 4:03:31 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
At 3/23/2010 3:59:59 PM, MTGandP wrote:
God can surely create a stone which he would then be unable to lift. He cannot however make 2+2=5.

But God can do anything that is physically possible, as you said. So that means God can lift this rock, which means that he actually cannot create a rock which he would then be unable to lift.

Right. Which means that God's powers and abilities are limited to the realm of the logically possible.

Except, there is nothing outside of the realm of the logically possible. It's not really binding if it has no real barriers.

This is exactly what I was going to say.

Seriously, arguments like this are so easy to refute I'm amazed so many people still use them.
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mattrodstrom
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3/23/2010 6:30:06 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/23/2010 3:57:24 PM, Cody_Franklin wrote:

The facts of reality aren't contingent on human conception. A would be A even if humans had not made that discovery.

It certainly SEEMS that way

lol
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."