Philosophical Conundrum

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by Brian J. Rivera, Aug 30, 2014.

  1. So I'm starting philosophy class tomorrow and I'm nervous. Anyway to get my boots wet I would like to ponder a question with you.

    As human beings there are two worldviews that we can subscribe to. The first states that our inferences can be used to draw facts from the universe. (This thinking has helped the fields of science, medicine, policing, etc.) The second suggests that our inferences cannot be used to draw conclusions from the universe because what lies beyond may be so drastically different.(This type of thinking has proved to be correct in some mathematics equations, it has also been shown to be effective in some scientific studies such as Schrodinger's cat, and even in some cases it has shown to be correct about serial killers.)

    So what do you guys think it is?
  2. #2 Brother Paul, Aug 30, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2014
    Both! There is a sense in which either can be true. Our physical perceptual limitations even effect the instrumentation we develop to extend our senses. So in the theoretical end we stretch our imaginations outside of what we "know" and venture into possibilities which then lead to see from different perspectives and even unusual discoveries. A pure materialist cannot see beyond the box or think outside the box and only rely on what they can perceive or demonstrate about the box (Universe). This leads to the two positions. Philosophy forces one to think in what we consider logical terms (but even this has its flaws because some things defy logic and there by necessity is a degree of uncertainty), but I am speaking of purely scientific reasoning as it has its limits as well.

    Consider some of the limitations of scientific reasoning here paraphrased from the book Living Philosophy

    Science cannot answer questions about value. For example, there is no scientific answer to the questions, "Which of these flowers is prettier?" or "which smells worse, a skunk or a skunk cabbage?" And of course, there's the more obvious example, "Which is more valuable, one ounce of gold or one ounce of steel?" Our culture places value on the element gold, but if what you need is something to build a skyscraper with, gold, a very soft metal, is pretty useless. So there's no way to scientifically determine value.

    Science can't answer questions of morality. The problem of deciding good and bad, right and wrong, is outside the determination of science. This is why expert scientific witnesses can never help us solve the dispute over abortion: all a scientist can tell you is what is going on as a fetus develops; the question of whether it is right or wrong to terminate those events is determined by cultural and social rules--in other words, morality. The science can't help here.

    Finally, science can't help us with questions about the supernatural. This would be like a limited creature inside a box, never having even been to all places in the box, trying to make assertions regarding the nature of being outside the box. The prefix "super" means "above." So supernatural simply means "above (or beyond) the natural." The toolbox of a scientist contains only the natural laws of the universe and instruments designed by outside intelligent forces (the experimenter) from and regarding things only of the natural aspects of the universe they perceive or are aware of (forms, forces, and their functions and interactions). Supernatural questions are therefore outside their reach BUT because it cannot prove them, or find proof of this, does not negate the possibility of its/their existence.

    Science can't tell you how to appropriately use scientific knowledge we discover.

    Applied scientific rreasoning is limited by our perceptual abilities, our intelligently designed instruments and experiments, and our ability to, rightly and without hoped for bias, interpret properly the evidence free of preconceived conclusions dictating that interpretation. Secondly, it is mostly limited to the present regarding these factors (not accurately knowing the past and only able to speculate possible futures). Thirdly it is impotent in revealing most purpose of things. It can tell us how something happens but not always why.

    Finally applied scientific reasoning cannot deal with the unique. Personal experience , especially those confirmed by many (which makes it empirical), cannot be always tested or defined or even denied by anything science can do however not making these any less important or real. A signal received from space that is not regular may not be repeated for centuries therefore, it is real and true, yet outside the scientific definition of proof or evidence, thus the inability to prove something scientifically by materialist definitions of proof and evidence cannot and do not negate the reality of something. The applied scientific method therefore falls quite short in many instances in matters regarded as part of the arts, philosophy, and theology to confirm or negate issues these create or bring to our attention.

    So therefore we can draw many inferences directly from the Universe, and at the same time we cannot draw many from only the Universe.

    May the Lord enable you to grasp the deep thinking you are about to venture into and allow you to use this to His glory...

    In His love

    brother Paul
  3. Dude that message was like a gift from the most high. I also have a sort of answer to this. I've been struggling with which worldview to stick . Personally I like your solution which is sticking to both. The first allows us to infer gods existence by evidence, but the second says we can infer God's existence beca use of mystery. Since the universe is so mysterious we have to assume that other parts are so drastically different that it would have laws to allow a supernatural begining.
  4. Note when I say super natural I actually mean metaphysical.
  5. Amen! Even quantum physics is mathematically seeing the theoretical possibility of other realms (dimensions) co-existing with our own. Biblicaly we may see these as angelic realms but even the science is indicating the possibility. Also if one REALLY ponders what empirical evidence really is a wonderful realization unfolds...

    So one cannot “prove” there is not a God, gods, or anything outside of the natural order (outside their box) by merely natural means (by only using inside the box means), again THAT”S ABSURD to even imagine such a thing….

    So no one can “prove” by materialist limited definition of proof that there is a God but that however does not mean there is not evidence for such a being…

    All we absolutely know for sure (scientifically speaking) is NO ONE can “prove” by any means (empirical or purely material) that there IS NO GOD…I am sure you agree with that (I hope)...Philosophy 101 tells us no on can prove a universal negative...

    Now listen carefully…because millions throughout the ages have personally experienced God (as well as other phenomena outside of what YOU would call the natural order), observed the effects of such a being, tested what He has claimed and found it to be true…(regardless of whether or not you have)! This historically verifiable fact alone (not even considering other things like the purely prescient nature of Biblical prophecy, and other matters) IS empirical evidence that there is a God…

    Now consider what is empirical evidence

    Empirical = based on, concerned with, or verifiable by observation or experience rather than theory or pure logic; originating in or based on observation or experience; relying on experience or observation alone often without due regard for system and theory ; capable of being verified or disproved by observation or experiment.

    So to believe there is no God one must be in denial of the empirical evidence of millions of people from every walk of life from every culture (both genders) and all different ages thoughout time. Do you deny all this empirical evidence? Many have seen Him (though maybe you have not). Many have heard His voice (though maybe you have not). Many have been transformed and forever changed (though maybe not you). Prophecy rebukes the accusation from statistical probabilities (but you cannot see that many things have been prophesied that came to pass). Too many people have been healed to be blown off by the “mere coincidence “ argument. You can test Him and do what He says and see for yourself if you do not get the promised result (some are afraid and like being their own lord - Gen. 3:5). I could go on but you can see how absurd a position it is to believe with any conviction that God is not.
  6. Never really thought about it that way. Just curious what is your stance on the problem of . I heard about freewill bubut I also heard a response that states "ccops impede on our rights so why can't god?
  7. Sorry Brian I do not understand your question. Somethings force or motivate our decisions and within our circumstance we decide moment by moment so both causation and free will play a role but IMO free will is not merely a set of random chemical brain reactions (though plenty of those are involved). Experience, preference, fears, faith, and many other factors influence but do not necessarily CONTROL our responses...IMO they do however influence them. So whether I choose the blue pants or the green today, for me, is not a matter of the universe/nature, or God imposing a choice into my mind, but I may choose the blue over the green because the green ones have a slight irremovable stain, or because I have to wear a certain shirt/tie combo, or because my wife likes the blue pants...or any number of other influences in my free choice to select my own pants. Was that the idea? Does this even make sense?
  8. It had to do with the problem of evil. Many state freewill is the reason god cannot interfere, but a response is that we can impede each others rights. (Ie cop arresting pedophile) so the question raised is why can't god just interfere on our freewill if cops can?
  9. Oh I see, sorry! The fact is that He can but chooses to not do so. Why? Now not professing to judge His motives (for His ways are higher and His thoughts higher) IMO because in the beginning He gave man a certain dominion over this realm (an under-shepherd) so interfere in every instance would be to violate His own promised blessing (but God is faithful)....that does not negate the fact that sometimes (when it suits His will for His purpose or in working all things together for our good) He does just that, but not always.

    Now God is not at fault that the man to whom He promised this dominion gave away the deed to the ranch by disregarding His loving guidance (thou shalt not...because if you do) and followed the reasoning of the serpent believing it would make him a god unto himself (Genesis 3:5) God foreknowing mankind would fall into this conundrum pre-planned the resolve (Jesus Christ) and even promised them it would happen one day (Genesis 3:15) God did intervene but to do so He became a a sinless man won back or ransomed those in bondage to their new lord (Satan)....

    Hebrews 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; 15 And deliver ( to snatch away, rescue, save) them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

    Death was not a punishment for partaking of the fruit of the tree, it was the consequence that would surely occur...

    So God could always intervene and immediately extinguish all evil but then none of us would be here...but He loves us and so while we were yet sinners Christ died for us...the son of God became a son of man so the sons of men could once again become the sons of God

  10. I would suggest that "application" falls to strategic complexity for more than ethical or optimum methodologies do themselves.
  11. The Lord does not interfere with mans right to choose, but once you ask him to be your Lord and saviour he takes that as your free will choice to become his son. Once you belong to him he starts his work in your life to bring you to a level of sanctification. If you get off track his will bring you back by either discipline or punishment weather you want it or not. Just like any good father would do to his kids in whom he loves. As for interfering in the lives of other people we can not change their will nor do we have any power over them, but we do have authority over demonic spirits that interfere in their lives, and we can prevent these spirits from continuing harassing them through prayer.
  12. Philosophy is only one of the tools*** of man...

    ***Although during class, to protect one’s grades , one is not to demean the subject as it can flare up the Philosophy Professor, it is his job... : )

    I got good grades in this subject not that am good on memorizing, more on I like to make classify/branch out the topics, and i found it helpful during exams: as the question usually is “what are the”,,, more than “what constitutes”…

    One reason I like Wikipedia for branching it out : )

  13. Ultimately, no, our inferences cannot be used. For periods of time or scope of observances, yes, they can be used until the scope becomes either too big or too small to remain under our laws of motion or relativity.
    Like a cow which produces milk for a period of time, you can count on the milk being there during that period of time. Eventually the cow will need bred again to revive the milk producing capabilities. During this time you cannot count on the milk to be there.
    As so often the case is, it is determinant on the circumstances of the applications.

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