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Presuppositionalism

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Posted 12/1/18 , edited 12/2/18
So I've been interested in arguments for/against the existence of God for a while now, and sometime back I came upon presuppositionalist apologetics. Essentially, these apologists use a variant of Kant's transcendental argument for god, which says that logic, as a process, must have a prior justification, and the only possible justification is an 'unlimited being [i.e. god]'- so we are justified in presupposing the existence of such a being even if we can't prove it. Presuppositionalists put the argument on steroids, though. Basically, it goes like this:
1.1 God is the source of truth and logic.

1.2 By denying the existence of god, you are undermining truth itself, and can't know that there is such a thing as truth.

1.3 If you can't know there is truth, you can know literally nothing.

AND MOREOVER:

2.1 God revealed himself to us through the Bible and by 'writing on our hearts' the fact of his existence.

2.2 Since God is the source of truth and is by definition truthful, we know that he exists, and so does truth.

2.3 Since we know there is a source of truth (because he told us), truth itself, logic, etc., can follow.

FINAL CONCLUSION:
Atheists don't have a coherent worldview, much less a right one. Christians on the other hand, do. (To be clear, The argument isn't precisely that you can't know anything as an atheist, but that you have no reasonable claim to knowledge.)
Further implications include the idea that there are no real atheists.

DON'T JUMP ON ME YET!!!
Obviously, the above arguments beg the question at every turn. But pointing that out isn't enough for the presuppositionalist. He will tell you that his argument is 'virtuously' or 'epistemologically' circular. And if you give an inch, they'll take a mile. An (honest) admission that it's theoretically possible that you're wrong about absolutely everything you know (see: solipsism and hard skepticism) gives them perceived room to barge onward with the ridiculous assertions.
That brings me to the point of this thread. I've made up a mirror argument, and would like input regarding similarities and differences between mine and theirs, opinions regarding the success of my argument as an analogue, and advice on improving the analogy.
My argument goes like so:

3.1 Logic presupposes 'being' (the existence of something- anything) and consciousness.
3.1 A) Logic presupposes being, because a thing cannot be and not be. Referring to a thing itself, not our perception or conception of it.
3.1 B ) Logic presupposes consciousness because it stems from descriptive 'laws of thought' which are not of independent existence.

3.2 There is a self-evident conscious being ("Cogito ergo sum")

3.3 Logic, by definition, entails truth.

3.4 Conscious beings are justified in accepting logic and truth.

That does it for the first part, the refutation of their argument. I'd like to take it a step further and turn around the second part of the argument, but haven't gotten that far.

If some part of this post doesn't make sense let me know. I wrote it all out, accidentally deleted it, then rewrote it from memory as best I could. Looking forward to your ideas.

IMPORTANT: For the record, this thread isn't about whether or not god exists, except as it pertains to this particular brand of apologetics.
For a more complete understanding of the apologists' position, here are a couple of debates that might help:
Panel debate:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUKIVV48LOk
Sye ten Bruggencate vs Matt Dillahunty:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OL8LREmbDi0
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Posted 12/1/18 , edited 12/1/18

foraslan wrote:

which says that logic, as a process, must have a prior justification,

It's easier to just stop and refute it here with a simple "No, it doesn't." and a "Prove it.".

Although, I'm not really a fan of philosophy of which I view as extremely archaic and increasingly more so obsolete in the face of modern science, so I'm not the best person to answer this question.

As you said, the argument from presupposition will inherently always beg the question, so really there is no need to seriously refute it unless the speaker can give a more nuanced and balanced argument.
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Posted 12/1/18 , edited 12/1/18

XxDarkSasuxX wrote:
It's easier to just stop and refute it here with a simple "No, it doesn't." and a "Prove it.".

Although, I'm not really a fan of philosophy of which I view as extremely archaic and increasingly more so obsolete in the face of modern science, so I'm not the best person to answer this question.

As you said, the argument from presupposition will inherently always beg the question, so really there is no need to seriously refute it unless the speaker can give a more nuanced and balanced argument.


In principle I agree, but it's not that easy in practice. The argument sounds reasonable on first glance (most good scientific hypotheses are rooted in prior observation, and all deduced knowledge stems from prior premises), especially to someone already persuaded that they're right. My hope is that if a substantially similar argument can be formed for the opposite position, they'll be able to see the problem- or at least I'll be able to frustrate them as much as they do me.
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

foraslan wrote:

In principle I agree, but it's not that easy in practice. The argument sounds reasonable on first glance (most good scientific hypotheses are rooted in prior observation, and all deduced knowledge stems from prior premises), especially to someone already persuaded that they're right. My hope is that if a substantially similar argument can be formed for the opposite position, they'll be able to see the problem- or at least I'll be able to frustrate them as much as they do me.


So what is your standpoint on the matter
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

AnimeObserver123 wrote:

So what is your standpoint on the matter


Like, other than what I've already written? I'm not sure what you mean, since I thought my OP and that comment would have made it clear.
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18
I think it's like skipping to the end of a novel to just say "God is the source of truth and logic." from the get go. To base a whole argument on such a prematurely outlandish claim is hardly worth debating.
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

foraslan wrote:


AnimeObserver123 wrote:

So what is your standpoint on the matter


Like, other than what I've already written? I'm not sure what you mean, since I thought my OP and that comment would have made it clear.


My bad
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18
There actually isnt a god.

Just humans destroying the world day by day.

There isnt an actual argument.

Just because someone wrote the bible, that doesnt mean god exists.

To believe that only the few were the only ones to truly experience god, complete and utter nonsense


God doesnt exist, just a thought in our heads.

God does more harm than good by creating a dictatorship, it leaves no room for living beyond gods reasoning, brainwasing people.

Thats not god, god never wanted people to support a salesmen of god, god never wanted to build churches, God never wanted people to repent for their sins.

God doesnt want us to live life for ourselves, god repressed and held society down, creating a belief that destroys and kills, victimizes and tortures people.

There is no god, just mankinds disgusting nature of a perfect world.

To believe god exists, do what you will. Sing and pray, dance and laugh, look up to the sky and believe something is there.

The moment you start spouting off about god and his existence, thats when i come into play.

Family friendship and culture are the only thing that exists in this world



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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

Humms wrote:

There actually isnt a god.

Just humans destroying the world day by day.

There isnt an actual argument.

Just because someone wrote the bible, that doesnt mean god exists.

To believe that only the few were the only ones to truly experience god, complete and utter nonsense


God doesnt exist, just a thought in our heads.

God does more harm than good by creating a dictatorship, it leaves no room for living beyond gods reasoning, brainwasing people.

Thats not god, god never wanted people to support a salesmen of god, god never wanted to build churches, God never wanted people to repent for their sins.

God doesnt want us to live life for ourselves, god repressed and held society down, creating a belief that destroys and kills, victimizes and tortures people.

There is no god, just mankinds disgusting nature of a perfect world.

To believe god exists, do what you will. Sing and pray, dance and laugh, look up to the sky and believe something is there.

The moment you start spouting off about god and his existence, thats when i come into play.

Family friendship and culture are the only thing that exists in this world





TLDR:

God doesn't exist because someone wrote the bible. If someone says they have experienced God it must be nonsense. Blames God afterwards for making a dictatorship and then accuses people of being brainwashed. Claims to know what God isn't and what God wants. Then continues to blame God for all the woes on earth.

So to recap God doesn't exist but you know what he wants and that people who believe in him are dum dums and every bad thing ever is because of God

The thread isn't about the existence of God btw
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

Yellowkitty96 wrote:


Humms wrote:







TLDR:

God doesn't exist because someone wrote the bible. If someone says they have experienced God it must be nonsense. Blames God afterwards for making a dictatorship and then accuses people of being brainwashed. Claims to know what God isn't and what God wants. Then continues to blame God for all the woes on earth.

So to recap God doesn't exist but you know what he wants and that people who believe in him are dum dums and every bad thing ever is because of God

The thread isn't about the existence of God btw


No the thread is about the argument of the existence of god, even when i said there is no argument, in my mind, there is no argument on the existence VS non existence. So my argument is the non existence of god. So saying that this thread isnt about the existence of god...... what?

I didnt say people are dumb for believing in god, you just assume that, and assuming something is wrong. There are a lot of very educated a logical people who believe in God. Let them believe in god, I don't care, just don't go preaching it, or ill preach right back sister.

I don't assume that god doesnt exist. It is my argument that god doesnt exist

God can be blamed for almost everything.

unless you just want to say that humans are the cause of every problem, and God was never a part of any problem in our world, sure, your fleece is looking rather bright today.

I guess Humans would never be humans without God, we wouldn't use common sense not to rape people or murder people.



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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18
its illogical to assume that logic cannot exist independent of outside phenomena
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

Humms wrote:


Yellowkitty96 wrote:


The thread isn't about the existence of God btw


No the thread is about the argument of the existence of god, even when i said there is no argument, in my mind, there is no argument on the existence VS non existence. So my argument is the non existence of god. So saying that this thread isnt about the existence of god...... what?

I didnt say people are dumb for believing in god, you just assume that, and assuming something is wrong. There are a lot of very educated a logical people who believe in God. Let them believe in god, I don't care, just don't go preaching it, or ill preach right back sister.

I don't assume that god doesnt exist. It is my argument that god doesnt exist

God can be blamed for almost everything.

unless you just want to say that humans are the cause of every problem, and God was never a part of any problem in our world, sure, your fleece is looking rather bright today.

I guess Humans would never be humans without God, we wouldn't use common sense not to rape people or murder people.





Yellowkitty is right, the thread is not a general "Does God exist?" thread. It is specifically about presuppositional apologetics- how both Christians and atheists relate to the arguments, and what to do about people who subscribe to the idea talking past the people they're arguing with. If you would read the OP through, and especially the second half, you would see that I'm hoping for people to criticize my (presumedly) analogous argument.
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

foraslan wrote:


Humms wrote:


Yellowkitty96 wrote:


The thread isn't about the existence of God btw


No the thread is about the argument of the existence of god, even when i said there is no argument, in my mind, there is no argument on the existence VS non existence. So my argument is the non existence of god. So saying that this thread isnt about the existence of god...... what?

I didnt say people are dumb for believing in god, you just assume that, and assuming something is wrong. There are a lot of very educated a logical people who believe in God. Let them believe in god, I don't care, just don't go preaching it, or ill preach right back sister.

I don't assume that god doesnt exist. It is my argument that god doesnt exist

God can be blamed for almost everything.

unless you just want to say that humans are the cause of every problem, and God was never a part of any problem in our world, sure, your fleece is looking rather bright today.

I guess Humans would never be humans without God, we wouldn't use common sense not to rape people or murder people.





Yellowkitty is right, the thread is not a general "Does God exist?" thread. It is specifically about presuppositional apologetics- how both Christians and atheists relate to the arguments, and what to do about people who subscribe to the idea talking past the people they're arguing with. If you would read the OP through, and especially the last couple of paragraphs, you would see that I'm hoping for people to criticize my (presumedly) analogous argument.


Alright its sunday, and i feel like typing

Im pretty sure when i say god doesnt exist to someone who thinks god exists, am I really going to sit down and collect all of their points about the existence of god and reply, well you have good points and i agree, now heres what i think.

It doesnt matter if you reword it to still be in favor of existence.

I wont take an argument over the existence of god, im not foolish. However i will gladly tell you that god does not exist and only exists as a strong independant thought that is carried through millions of people who support it.

There is no power against me. Fuck, even my religious aunt stopped saying grace at the christmas table.

You realize why you just wasted time considering the existence of something we have no control over.

Like if i decided to say, this piece of wood is my god, and if you disobey it you will be punished.

1. There is an actual physical representation of the god in question in real time.

2. That piece of wood will not speak for itself, and thus an individual must be the voice of god. It will also not act upon others disbeliefs and sins, so therfore an individual must act for god in order to punish someone

So there you go, in one way or another there is a loophole. We can even say a person claims to be God, embodiment of God, back then the wealthy and powerful would probably get away with it, but today people just think youre a moron.

No, today the advocates of god just get paid an absurd amount of money to keep the belief system alive and well. Disgusting really.

When will people thank themselves for putting food on the table, god knows he aint paying for it

I believe in money, you should join my religion. Its called reality

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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

Humms wrote:






This thread isn't about selling religion or Atheism. It appears that you keep ignoring that.
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Posted 12/2/18 , edited 12/2/18

Cardamom_Ginger wrote:


Humms wrote:






This thread isn't about selling religion or Atheism. It appears that you keep ignoring that.


I will not acknowledge there are 2 sides to the argument

so you can't refine your arguments
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