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Messages - Vigilance

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Interzone / Re: Atheism
« on: February 20, 2014, 05:47:10 PM »
Humanism is the result of Christian moral philosophy put under scrutiny by our formal schools of rationalism. It is the product, if you will, of jettisoning the inconsistencies within the Christian tradition and as practiced by Christian institutions. The core ethics however, are largely the same.

It's important to stress, that the death of God in popular and intellectual circles leaves the moral philosophy of humanism with the task of justifying itself. No longer could it rest on a metaphysically objective axiom - the belief in God the Father.

If you take the work of Descartes and apply his thinking to your ethical system, you will be led to the conclusion that objective morality can be found manifesr in physical reality. Science, as the mode of inquiry most suited to the study of physical reality, was and is the natural tool used to justify humanism.

Everyone is free to pass moral judgment on humanism, but as I said with science, let's understand the thinking that got us to where we are. I do believe there is a profound lack of clarity on this whole subject.

Interzone / Re: Atheism
« on: February 20, 2014, 03:37:58 PM »
The value of empiricism is that it was no longer enough to simply shore up an argument or a position that met the rules of logic, you had to demonstrate it. It had to be proven against reality as it can be repeatedly ddemonstrated to other observers.

The limitations are obvious. Empiricism is not applicable to metaphysics which is "the stuff beyond physics." Empiricism is time sensitive. Pure positivism could be used to reject truths which are true but lack in evidence buried over time, burned, destroyed. Finally, that many events/phenomenon are downright impossible, or even notoriouslt difficult to produce/reproduce.

The problems with scientists, science or what have you are do entirely to the underpinnings of all modern thinking, not the discipline itself.

Go right back to the beginning, as I mentioned already, to Descartes.

"I think, therefore I am" which means: To be, is to be known. To be known is to be defined. To be defined is to be quantified. And so on.

It shouldn't be much from there to trace out how we got to strict physicalism qua the mechanical cosmos. All the hubris, the suppositions and the belligerence that is attributed to partisans of this type of thinking has its origins in Descartes and his essential proposal that only that which can be known, by way of the process described, can be said to exist.

I think it's helpful, so that we don't join the chorus of babbling babboons to separate science as a mode of inquiry and the modern mode of thinking that uses and guides it.

Kingdomgone, Grecocastro and all onlookers, please take note.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 19, 2014, 11:21:21 PM »
Whether you are or are not a great person was and is of no significance to me, Capiche? I never wanted to actually discuss the matter.

With that in mind: The thing that chapped my ass is that the ambiguous self characterization is all you gave me as reasons why my view was incorrect. Honestly I'm not inclined at this point to believe there is any substance to what you have to say about objectivity or human perception strictly based on your responses to me. For all the talk about reality, I don't think it's a terrible task to correspond your perceptions with reality as I made attempts to do.

For the record, I still value what you have to say from a spiritual and metaphysical point of view.

Right outta the gate tree's been a copy-crow. I can't get anything from him that didn't originate from you or the unintentional cult of personality that's developed. Key word being unintentional.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 19, 2014, 10:27:46 PM »
I think that "historically great person" was unclear, meaningless even. You could have told me you are John Lennon without a loss or gain in clarity.

You'll have to forgive my frustration. I'm legitimately interested in the question of objectivity. Further, I feel I gave you the world in defense against your objections. I took the time to clear everything up as best I could and tie my beliefs about human perception to some hard limits imposed on it by the reality of the human condition. It's a bit of a kick in the balls to be told I am wrong because you happen to be John Lennon and that's the crux of your objections. Da fuq?

Not that I think John Lennon was a great person or anything, just the first name that came to mind.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 19, 2014, 09:49:58 PM »
I have a keen eye for ambiguity. I also know the dangers inherent in assumption.
I try never to assume intent from writing I see as ambiguous.
Most writing is ambiguous.

Really? Really?

You basically told me that my entire premise on the limitations of human perception is flawed based on a completely ambiguous self-conception as one of histories great men, standing head over shoulders above everyone else. I was going to completely ignore that poppycock too.

Interzone / Re: Sanity.
« on: February 19, 2014, 03:48:40 PM »
The entire project of civilization is to gain a sense of being protected from what is perceived as a hostile reality.
As a result, reality itself does not change. People's perception of it does.

The first part is social contract theory and a bit of projection.

Not so. Simply observation. Co-operation solves a multitude of problems. Even imaginary ones.

Except that the trajectory, accomplishments, technology and social organization of real civilizations is determined by two large factors:
1) Energy flow
2) Dominant cultural narratives.

Rome developed things like steam engines and latin empires had wheels. The former never industrialized and the latter used wheels as children's toys. Why? It's a matter of narratives. The Romans inherited the Greek intellectual tradition which emphasized Man's subservience to Nature. You'll notice after Rome's fall, in the hot bed of culture and ideas, there gradually emerged the idea that man was lord over nature. An idea that caught on especially forcefully with the gradual discovery of the energy potential locked within fossils. Energy and stories.

Interzone / Re: The 'hubris' of atheism/science/physicalism - and the rest
« on: February 19, 2014, 03:34:34 PM »
There's always hubris in the midnight hours of civilization. The only meaningful response to this is to preserve the methods not necessarily the specifics of the formal schools of your dying civilization.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 19, 2014, 03:30:32 PM »
What makes you think you are equipped to determine that my perceptions are not capable of sensing a complete picture? You may be right inasfar as that applies to you. But how can you know it applies to me?

The whole reason I persist in writing anything on the internet, is that I have something very rare to impart.
I certainly don't do it for my health, or for any other reason.
There have, throughout history, occasionally been men who have stood head and shoulders above the rest.
Can it be so very difficult to imagine I might be one of those men?

I see that it can. In fact it never even occurs to anybody but a very, very few, that this might be the case.
This is reality. It can be a very difficult thing to face. But it is reality, and I bow down before it.

By the way: what does 'clout' refer to?

You know with the amount of time we've existed as a species and reflected on our limitations our strengths and our hardware, we've come to posses something of a degree of a fucking clue what those are. I mean this in a very broad sense, but there is something of a consensus between people who dedicate their lives to understanding the nature and the mechanics of the brain that the autonomous process I described has a degree of accuracy and weight behind it.

There are limits to the data our senses collect. The mental modeling our brain does is not a presentation of the raw data. What the brain chooses to display, how it displays it is an artifact of the development of our species over time in response to environmental pressures and an adapting toolkit which includes the data gathering senses.

All of this is not anecdotal, it is not conjecture. You are a human being like I am. Our brains will process the same information to a degree of difference and this is certain, however that speaks nothing towards the limitations of human perception.

By clout I mean the amount of times I had to reword myself before you understood that I was understanding you. I don't mean it in a bad way just that it's been a ride, man.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 18, 2014, 11:11:30 PM »
Your perceptions are not a complete picture and certainly not "reality as it is" but reality filtered by sense, compiled, sorted and presented by brains. The idea that humanity has access to objective assessment of reality qua Absolute Truth is unfounded. You appear to contest this assessment. It's hard to tell because a lot of clout has had to be cut through to get us to this point.

Interzone / Re: Sanity.
« on: February 18, 2014, 09:57:05 PM »
Folks like to talk about "reality," as if it were a concrete thing, fixed and unchanging, but I submit to you that reality is nothing at all, and is constantly in a state of flux.  It is there to be molded, to be shaped and formed by the right hands at the direction of the right mind.

Oooh I like where this is going - hope you fellas don't mind if I chime in.

Dylar - the 'reality' you speak of; is your example not simply one 'reality' which humans can perceive? Crow seems to be speaking of a 'reality' beyond humans' scope.  Perhaps, another 'reality' exists - that of the cosmos and its happenings, or supernatural beings that dictate the direction of the universe, or maybe something entirely different. Of course, that begs the question - is THAT the ultimate, concrete 'reality'?

Also, another thought: is 'reality' fixed and unchanging? Or can it/does it change?

You can take the fact that birds ARE dinosaurs to be evidence for either conclusion and that's the fun.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 18, 2014, 09:44:26 PM »
The only thing I didn't like about his translation was the lack of artistry.

The most simple way I can put what I'm getting at is like this:

You can escape analysis of your perceptions but you can't escape your perceptions.

This is the divergence I've tried hard to underline.

Interzone / Re: Sanity.
« on: February 18, 2014, 09:40:35 PM »
The entire project of civilization is to gain a sense of being protected from what is perceived as a hostile reality.
As a result, reality itself does not change. People's perception of it does.

The first part is social contract theory and a bit of projection.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 18, 2014, 08:49:51 PM »
Those are from the Mitchell translation no?

We've had the conversation about the "I" you and I. I don't know if you noticed but I was careful to chose to include that the brain presents a "picture" of reality to us, so as to avoid any unnecessary conflation between the self and the brain.

I hope you can see where I'm coming from when I say that its "autonomous operation" is the reality in which we dwell. Each brain processes information just a bit differently from one to the next and to greater degrees from one species to the other. That really brings us full circle back into objective statements of right and wrong.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 18, 2014, 07:29:05 PM »
Seriously? One of the better innovations of truth seeking has been in seeing how well ideas hold up to scrutiny. That usually happens through other people poking holes, finding discrepancies, outright refuting something.

I described, or rather restated an operation of the brain, a specific one at that. You seem to concern yourself with the operations that are piled on top of that very basic program. The "rational" analysis if you prefer, of the "picture" painted by that program is a different animal. Well it is one of the innovations of the human animal really.

If the flash light metaphor is applicable to anything here. It is the incompleteness of the picture compiled by the sense, filtered processed and presented to the self by the brain.

You probably turn off the rational side like creatures without such adaptations, but to say that you just don't use your brain or any of its operations is inaccurate.

Oh and the brain-program described has a tremendous effect on objective statements and the access to absolute truth.

Interzone / Re: The way things are - The way things ought to be
« on: February 18, 2014, 06:08:44 PM »
I'm sorry but the flashlight is not an accurate metaphor of the type of operation that has been presented. I'd welcome a refutation of the stated mode of operation if you have one.

You're right, my desire is for productive conversation. We have enough semantics and copy-crows around here. The desire is to get somewhere. Which by the way began to happen in that atheism conversation between Imp and myself. So I know it's possible.

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