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Why Relativism Fails

Why Relativism Fails
December 11, 2008, 11:31:39 PM
Quote from: Vijay Prozak
Relativism is a funny name because it is an attempt to politicize a scientific "discovery." Only fifteen to twenty thousand years after the ancient Indian Aryans wrote a book called the Mahabarata in which they described, among other things, the explanation of the observational fallacy which we now know as "relativity," science came up with a simplistic doctrine of the same and expressed it in symbolic math. Those who wanted to gain political power saw their chance. They portrayed all of society up to that point as an ignorant conservative herd, and created a "new" idea, called "relativism." Relativism states, in short, that the individual only knows what he or she has experienced, and it is as real to them as any reality, thus when we make decisions involving those individuals, we have to consider what's inside their heads to be as real as the reality we all share.

When you look at it that way, of course, relativism is revealed as the sham it is. If you boil it down even further, you see that relativism is basically the doctrine that we can each believe what we want, and there is no reality check, ever. In short, reality checks are made illegal by the doctrine of relativity, even though reality has always been consistent for all of us equally. Even calling relativism a "new" belief runs afoul of reality, as the belief of relativism has been around for a long time, but in the past we called it something different: "insane." Our time is unhealthy, of course, so to claim that health exists is like saying the emperor is stark naked when the newspapers say he is not.

This is from an article that Prozak wrote, which summarizes the problem of relativism well.  I'm posting this here to continue a discussion that was derailing another thread.

Relativism stems from the idea that all people's perceptions of reality are equal.  This itself is derived from liberal egalitarianism.  By implication, it rejects any form of empiricism (science, for example).  So according to relativism, what is true is what everybody decides is true.  In other words, it's a form of absolutist democracy.  Relativism is ultimately flawed because it confuses people's perceptions of reality with reality itself.  This philosophy is ultimately suicidal, so I would recommend we work to remove it from society.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 01:28:22 AM
Relativism boiled down to simplicity is accepting all truth's as valid, whether or not you believe it as such has no bearing on "Your" reality.

I also fail to see how it in itself is harmful to A.N.U.S when most people I know of wouldn't understand the idea, unless they are currently taking a spiritual path, which many I know are. It is an idea which to an person who dabbles in egoism and duality is less than desirable.

This thread itself "fails" to see other view points and is working against the universe.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 01:55:54 AM
First, relativism is harmful to everything, not just ANUS (which I'm am neither part of nor speak for, by the way).

Second, let me clarify some things.  Accepting all truths as valid is fine, as long as the claims are actually true.  The problem is that relativism accepts all truth claims as valid without justification.  This allows for mutually exclusive claims to be considered true.  Since mutually exclusive claims can't be true by definition, relativism is a flawed philosophy.

It's pretty easy to see how this can play out in reality:
Person A: HOLY SHIT THERE'S A FUCKING BEAR BEHIND YOU!
Person B: That may be true for you, but not for me.
Person A: *runs away
Person B: *massages penis
Bear:  *tears motherfucker to pieces

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 02:25:19 AM
So, you're pandering to this "crowd" with using outlandish examples which lack common sense! I get it!

I fail to see your "evidence" just because of this, nor do I see how this validates the failure of it either.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 02:39:51 AM
common sense is antithetical to relativism. dur.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 02:57:00 AM
common sense is antithetical to relativism. dur.

Antithetical to someone who believes that a human being would lack it.

I must have forgot my absolutist, limiting beliefs elsewhere.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 03:03:46 AM
So, you're pandering to this "crowd" with using outlandish examples which lack common sense! I get it!

I fail to see your "evidence" just because of this, nor do I see how this validates the failure of it either.

I'm not pandering to anyone here.  Multiple people on this forum have been promoting relativistic views and I'm trying to point out the failure of this view.  The example was outlandish because it was supposed to be funny.  Also, I didn't claim to provide any evidence in my post, only arguments.  Do you even know what the difference is?

Allowing for mutual exclusive claims to be true at the same time is a logical fallacy.  Therefore, relativism is illogical.  If you want a real world example of this then how about this: Some people believe that Bigfoot exists, while others don't.  According to relativistic philosophy both of these claims must be seen as equally valid and true.  Either Bigfoot exists or he doesn't.  By definition something cannot both exist and not exist at the same time.  Do you see what I'm saying?

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 03:26:11 AM
Quote
I'm not pandering to anyone here.  Multiple people on this forum have been promoting relativistic views and I'm trying to point out the failure of this view.  The example was outlandish because it was supposed to be funny.  Also, I didn't claim to provide any evidence in my post, only arguments.  Do you even know what the difference is?

I see what you are saying, however this is just your perception of the idea much like the author's.



Quote
Allowing for mutual exclusive claims to be true at the same time is a logical fallacy.  Therefore, relativism is illogical.  If you want a real world example of this then how about this: Some people believe that Bigfoot exists, while others don't.  According to relativistic philosophy both of these claims must be seen as equally valid and true.  Either Bigfoot exists or he doesn't.  By definition something cannot both exist and not exist at the same time.  Do you see what I'm saying?

Relativity isn't rooted in logical thought, neither is Universalism. Both have the same idea just one extreme, both allowing for two truths to remain at the same time. The only difference is your application of what you believe to be true, such as your disbelief in bigfoot. I do believe the parent of relativity is the idea of Oneness. Intuition is discounted as if it doesn't exist in the article, that's my only problem with it.

So in reality the author stretched the idea out of outlandishness, to frame it as if it's stupid, moronic and bad.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 03:33:18 AM
Quote from: Mirdautas_Vras
Relativity isn't rooted in logical thought

Good.  So we both agree that Relativity is illogical.  If you believe using an illogical philosophy to understand reality is the way to go, then be my guest.  However, I would suggest that logically based philosophies would be a better idea.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 03:38:23 AM
droves of human beings lack common sense. ever met a meth addict? or a woman who stays loyal to a man abusive enough to endanger her well-being, telling herself that he'll change? it may be a cliche to say, but common sense really is not all that common.

you seem to be mistaking a willingness to accept verifiable realities as absolutism. calling it limiting is obfuscation, not to mention a value judgment - there are boundaries to any worldview. those boundaries can be defined by the world outside of the individual. or, as in relativism, they can be determined solely by what the individual perceives(or even, chooses to perceive). it's a weakness, and is again antithetical to common sense, as common sense dictates that the individual does not create the world, but that the world creates him.

calling an example outlandish does not invalidate it. all that says is that you don't like the example, as you've done nothing to actually discredit it.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 03:43:48 AM
Quote from: Mirdautas_Vras
Relativity isn't rooted in logical thought

Good.  So we both agree that Relativity is illogical.  If you believe using an illogical philosophy to understand reality is the way to go, then be my guest.  However, I would suggest that logically based philosophies would be a better idea.

Logic and Illogic are part of the same, continuum so to speak. Both are used in daily life, in behaviors, decision making and leading. I've been leading an life rife with illogical patterns and am able to see truth in both options. But to say X is better than Y, when a Y/X combo serves another better, is also illogical.

Note: I don't endorse using such all the time, you have to have some discipline in life.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 03:56:56 AM
droves of human beings lack common sense. ever met a meth addict? or a woman who stays loyal to a man abusive enough to endanger her well-being, telling herself that he'll change? it may be a cliche to say, but common sense really is not all that common.

You're just discounting emotion behind the act which is the cause of such happenings, perhaps a bit of empathy? No on says you have to take on their burden.

Quote
you seem to be mistaking a willingness to accept verifiable realities as absolutism. calling it limiting is obfuscation, not to mention a value judgment - there are boundaries to any worldview. those boundaries can be defined by the world outside of the individual. or, as in relativism, they can be determined solely by what the individual perceives(or even, chooses to perceive). it's a weakness, and is again antithetical to common sense, as common sense dictates that the individual does not create the world, but that the world creates him.

You are willing to accept one reality as the reality for ALL people, as if it limited by your views. Well in reality isn't it true we are created both by the world and the creation of our own reality? Are you discounting your connection to the universe? Weakness, who is judging value now? If you cannot see the connection of it all you will continue to believe it's antithetical.

Coincidentally, it is a paradox as we all are part of one reality. The idea is to accept the paradox and see it how it is, but I don't believe seekers of the DLA follow paths of Buddha, Osho and the like.

Quote
calling an example outlandish does not invalidate it. all that says is that you don't like the example, as you've done nothing to actually discredit it.

Much like yours has done nothing to discredit mine! What a coincidence.


Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 04:01:38 AM
I couldn't agree more that people make illogical decisions and engage in illogical behaviors, even in leadership positions.  And the world is paying a terrible price for it.  The problem with human beings is how illogical they are.  People don't understand how to justify beliefs, form opinions, or make decisions.  This is why so many people appear to be stupid, even if they have a high IQ, are well educated, etc.

Also, we aren't connected to the universe, we ARE the universe.  We are part of the universe, not separate from it.

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 06:02:02 AM
discounting emotion isn't relevant to the statement. in fact, i do the exact opposite by saying these behaviors *are* emotional - and not common sense. it seems you're trying to redefine the term to suit your needs. common sense refers, as far as i know, to the ability to let go of emotional reactions when such reactions would cause one to expect results that end up being different to those which actually occur. another term for this could be "logic." if your definition of the term differs from that which is known, define it first, because all discourse becomes useless if we simply make noises that could potentially mean anything

depending solely on one's own perceptions for formulating an idea of what is true is a weakness because it relies on ego. the individual is weak, as compared to the world. it is not a huge step to go from there to: the value of the individual is weak as compared to that of the rest of the world. same for the validity of the individual 'truth' as opposed to the unchangeable aspects of the world. calling it a weakness is not a value judgement, unless you see being weaker than something else as a frightening possibility. it's reality, though. bear's brain is weak compared to man's; man's arms are weak compared to bear's.

being able to accept one reality as reality-for-all can mean one of two things. the first is that one takes the limited amount of knowledge they have, and assumes it applies to the universe at large - this would be worthy of destruction, and if this is what you are trying to devalue, i think we're all on your side. but the second is that one accepts that there are aspects of reality of which you, as an individual, are not aware. this means that you are aware that you have significant limitations, as an individual, and that these limitations are much greater than those of the universe as a whole. there are aspects of life to which one is exposed that are not exposed to others, but Boeing 747s do exist even though a Jivaro shaman is not aware of their existence. the earth orbited the sun before Copernicus stated otherwise. these things are not pragmatic to those whose lives are unaffected by them, and thus they CAN afford to be ignored by those same people - but to say that they magically disappear without knowledge of them is to place human knowledge on a pedestal above reality itself. egoism, essentially

as for me not discrediting you - you didn't give an example of anything, so there was nothing i was trying to discredit. retorting with the fifth-grade 'i know you are but what am i' argument is just deflection, as it furthers nothing. the criticism you levied against JewBob's example was empty and meaningless to anyone but your own self, because there was nothing about it that extended beyond how it made you feel. i can't speak for anyone else, but i don't care how it made you feel, just as you shouldn't care how it makes me feel. i found the example valid because it was a metaphor that maintained all aspects of the trait being parodied. if you find it faulty, say how

Re: Why Relativism Fails
December 12, 2008, 07:41:57 AM
I think you misinterpreted what I said from the other thread. I'll try to be more clear. Social sciences are based upon relativitism. Hard sciences are based upon objectivism. Psychoanalysis is social science. Neuroscience is hard science. Defining something using relativism fails. I believe most here believe this.

Edit: science on the brain