The Tranny and the 'Great debate community'

Which sounds a bit like Harry Potter, or Tin Tin, or a whole host of Enid Byton novels.

In my mind I have already re-named it, the 'safe debate community'. For reasons that might become clear or they might not.

I have been a member of this community for a number of years. Never contributed much, mostly a bunch of people showing off their symbolic logic. However, a recent post caught my eye.

Not because of the post, but the content of one of the comments, by the original poster. Steve McRae I forget what it was exactly now, but the practical upshot was someone arguing that atheism is a 'belief', or requires 'belief'.  This was still related to the original post, loosley speaking. So off we went. This all became a bit odd, as the complaint was people 'hijacking' his thread. Odd since he introduced the new theme.

If the thread had been 'hijacked' it was by himself. The practical upshot of this was another thread popped up on the actual theme, and off we went again.

Now: for a number of years I have been arguing that Plato's notion of knowledge as 'true justified belief' isn't a useful definition of knowledge.  "True justified data" seems much closer to the truth. It seems counter intuitive that knowledge should require 'belief'at all.

I have also argued over recent years that belief is redundant. Arguments lead to logical conclusions, 'belief' doesn't change this. Those logical conclusions might ultimately be true, or they may not. I cannot answer that without being omniscient. And it was acknowledged on the thread that belief has no influence on the truth or falsity of a claim.

So why 'believe'?

So I also argue I have no belief's.

It may be that all of these arguments may be unsustainable in the long run. At this point I am more interested in whether rebuttals are sustainable? If not then this has quite important implications. Aspects of Epistemology change, doxatic logic dissapears, etc...

So.. I am immediately accused of being stupid. Which whilst not that unusual, seemed a bit strong as an opening salvo. But hey ho...

Among his various attempted rebuttals were, numerous assertions that I had beliefs. I argued that these assertions do not show where and how belief is required. He then described my statements 'a belief' individually. All without showing how or why they were 'beliefs'.

At a couple of points he cheerfully attempted to define me as an 'unreasonable reasoner', using symbolic logic. (A person who claims not to believe what they actually do believe.) Which might be sustainable if it wasn't imediately problematic, since this is doxatic logic, and needs 'belief' to be a genuine and useful tool. And as far as I am aware as a paradigm simply assumes 'belief', rather than demonstrates it is required.

So, on we go.

In the previous thread PhD's and Epistemologists had been wheeled out as 'all taking a different view to me. Which is fine, but doesn't demonstrate where belief is required or that I actually have 'belief's' at all. I.e. an appeal to authority. Which was immediately denied if course.

Next a declared PhD (Alex Malpas) was wheeled in. For the most part he was fairly reasonable, and eventually got as far as the definition of a 'belief' as "something thought true". Which is the best attempted rebuttal to date. And one I have previously considered. Unfortunately this doesn't logically rebut the proposition either. Firstly its unsatisfactory since it simply defines a thought as a belief. Its not clear to me that follows, and it seems to create an equivocation. Are thoughts really 'beliefs'?

Secondly and more importantly, as an argument it doesn't address the premise, "if logic leads to a conclusion and evidence supports that conclusion, belief is redundant. Belief has no role, belief is ego declaring it knows the answer. Therefore thinking something true is logically irrelevent to the proposition.

The assumption throughout, from the other side, seemed to be that somehow I was a 'troll', and I really am not. Stubborn, pig headed and persistent yes, but really not interested in just winding people up.

Now another objection then became that I was redefining 'belief' to suit myself. And I really can't see how that might be so. I accept that 'thought to be true' is a dictionary definition of 'belief'. My proposition is that if a claim is logically valid belief in the claim is redundant.

Logically this doesn't mean a) that it should be, or b) That I or anyone need to think a logical conclusion is 'true'. Logic can often lead to false conclusions. Sometimes even when they are evidenced, logical conclusions. Though more often in that instance the logic merely adjusts and turns out not so much to have been 'false' as merely incomplete or innacurate.

But if its not a logical conclusion then why entertain it at all?

Another accusation tossed out was that I was a 'robot' or a philosophical zombie, a notion that I would lack conscious experience or sentience. Its not entirely clear how this would supposedly follow from a lack of 'belief'.

Another accusation tossed out was that I was not worth talking to. Which still doesn't demonstrate 'belief' is required.

Another was that I was ignoring everything others were saying. Which I really wasn't. And I acknowledged what other people had actually said in various places.

Then it became me declaring that he and others had claimed the conclusion of a logical evidenced argument required belief. Which again its hard to see how that follows from what I actually posted.

That the western world is in an epistemological crisis (fake news) at this point seems fascinating. There is so much information, and we really don't have a clear idea of what news claims are true any more.

Sometimes this is because of ignorance, and propaganda from all sides of all arguments. But also because we know that in a few years, evidence will suggest something new, and a new story will be written. Some people then demand certainty, the religious right, christians, Islam, "This is the truth', emphatifally, no argument. Blind faith. Deny science.

For others its a matter of disbelieving everything they hear, prehaps they are right.

For others it is choosing what to believe. As if beliefs were a product, selected from a shelf.

And then I and a few others wonder if 'belief' is even necessary. Let alone an adequate definition of 'thinking something true', or 'describing a logical conclusion, with a degree of uncertainty.

For this irate poster, the thought that belief itself might not be required, seemed utterly intolerable. It was as if I had killed the sacred cow by even asserting it. I read the thread a couple of times, and was left with the impression that the irate person was king in this little kingdom and was more interested in promoting that notion, than actually addressing the argument.

I also drew the impression that McRae had a particular attatchment to doxatic logic, which would be severely disrupted if the notion of 'belief' were abandoned.

As I noted above that the closest to a rebuttal I have encountered is the idea that 'thinking something true' is a 'belief'. I don't really see that this needs to be owned, I can recognise the logical truth of a statement or argument without asserting it to be definitively true, or 'believing' it to be true. It seems like a need of the ego to assert that it knows and possesses a 'truth'. It seems more honest to say I cannot commit to 'believing' this, but it is clearly logically true and/or evidenced. I might even propose that I follow the hypothesis, if it has not been refuted, without needing to resort to 'belief'.

I am apparently not alone in exploring this theme, and ironically the writer also has the surname Walker.

https://www.nobeliefs.com/beliefs.htm

Now as things devleoped, the irate poster seemed to decide to interpret my comments in the most negative way possible, and essentially manufactured an excuse to eject me from the community. A brief PM conversation followed and he subsequently blocked me.

Which is no biggie, since I have been blocked and ejected, by racist, homophobic, and delusional (e.g. flat earthers and creationist)  posters and communities more times than I can remember.

However the tone set by this irate poster, and the self defeating rhetoric employed, seemed to me to reinforce the notion of a closed esoteric little kingdom, so locked into habitual thinking that it was functioning more as a cult, than anything to do with debate.

On the up side it felt significant enough to write about so.....There we go.

Popular posts from this blog

Sex objects. (Who to, or to what sex objects, we don't really know)

Who am I? Part the First.

Why Yeshuah is a myth.