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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by reason View Post
    His approach is irrelevent. All that is relevent are his ideas, and whether or not they are true.
    So, if his approach is just making random conjectures it makes no difference? He can randomly guess that the earth revolves around the sun, and in this case his idea seems to be true though he came to it through no reasoning whatsoever. He may be speaking the truth, but he cannot prove his idea to others in this method.

  2. #22
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Didums View Post
    The goal of science is to predict through careful observation, and to be able to predict events in a given context is to know the truth to some extent. The goal of philosophy is to reason the truth through logical inquiry, and to be able to reason the truth logically one may be able to predict. (I haven't taken philosophy yet but this is how I understand it)
    Already you're in trouble, because you're using truth as if it's this absolute thing. The point is that what one person calls "Truth" may not correspond to what another person calls "Truth." And in the same way, their methods for excavating their respective "Truths" can differ. One can start to argue that the other doesn't have the "right" methods for finding real truth, but his argument is pointless because they're both talking about different things. No one's right and no one's wrong in their definition because Truth has no inherent definition; the definition is up to the person using it.

    The post above this one has the same issue.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatsWhatHeSaid View Post
    Already you're in trouble, because you're using truth as if it's this absolute thing. The point is that what one person calls "Truth" may not correspond to what another person calls "Truth." And in the same way, their methods for excavating their respective "Truths" can differ. One can start to argue that the other doesn't have the "right" methods for finding real truth, but his argument is pointless because they're both talking about different things. No one's right and no one's wrong in their definition because Truth has no inherent definition; the definition is up to the person using it.

    The post above this one has the same issue.
    In my other posts I demonstrated that I understand that completely. Of course there is no "ultimate truth", our perception is too limited to conjure up such a thing, and it could only be interpreted subjectively through our narrow range of objective methods.

    What I'm saying is exactly that truths only apply to given contexts and certain methods, that truths in one field may not coincide with truths in another. It doesn't diminish the meaning of the truths, just confines them to their subject matter.

  4. #24
    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reason View Post
    His approach is irrelevent. All that is relevent are his ideas, and whether or not they are true.
    I retract my earlier statement about us speaking to different topics.

    Your later points underline this distinction.

    Scientist v. Philosopher is moot. Each position I offered describes semantic qualifications of truth, as a negotiable/divisible entity depending on intellectual heritage.

    As a sidebar, this realization comes as something of an ironic illustration of your apparent point.

  5. #25
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Didums View Post
    Of course there is no "ultimate truth", our perception is too limited to conjure up such a thing, and it could only be interpreted subjectively through our narrow range of objective methods.
    I don't think that's what's being. This is a semantic issue, not a epistemic issue. It's not that there's no objective reality because we have a problem with our perception or anything near that. It's that when I use the word truth, I may be talking about something different from what you're talking about, like the pencil/key analogy.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatsWhatHeSaid View Post
    I don't think that's what's being. This is a semantic issue, not a epistemic issue. It's not that there's no objective reality because we have a problem with our perception or anything near that. It's that when I use the word truth, I may be talking about something different from what you're talking about, like the pencil/key analogy.
    Hence:
    Quote Originally Posted by Didums View Post
    truths only apply to given contexts and certain methods, that truths in one field may not coincide with truths in another. It doesn't diminish the meaning of the truths, just confines them to their subject matter.
    Like how Quantum Mechanics and General Relativity do not agree on Black Holes.

  7. #27
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Didums View Post
    Hence:

    Like how Quantum Mechanics and General Relativity do not agree on Black Holes.
    But in that example, both fields have adopted the same theory of "truth" (correspondence) haven't they? Both are saying "we believe something is true when it corresponds to reality." One field predicts that A corresponds, another predicts B. Both are using the same theory because they agree on the same definition of truth. There's no semantic disagreement here.

  8. #28
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    So, if one group comes together and says "We believe black holes exist because we observe their effects on spacetime and energy" and another group says "We believe black holes don't exist because it is logically impossible to fit an increasing amount of matter into a single point" thats the kind of disagreement you speak of?

  9. #29
    no clinkz 'til brooklyn Nocapszy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reason View Post
    [Note: I have posted something very similar to this somewhere on MBTICentral before; this is a rewritten version.]

    Suppose that a scientist is searching for theories which correspond to the facts, and by convention he labels such theories 'true.' One day a philosopher asks the scientist whether he has succeeded. Although the scientist has discovered some useful theories, each has its problems and he does not think any are true. But the scientist is then told by the philosopher that his theories must be true. He is then convinced by the philosopher that a theory is not true because it corresponds to the facts, but because it has instrumental value.
    Does this mean that, if a fact is such that there's a land where no man can ever see, or interact with, then the theory based on that fact is untrue, simply because there can't be any instrumental value?


    Disabused of the correspondence theory of truth, the scientist now adopts to the pragmatic theory of truth. Prior to his conversion, the scientistís search for truth meant searching for theories which correspond to the facts, but now that is replaced by a search for theories with instrumental value.

    But is this a sensible move by the scientist? The original aim of the scientist's search was the discovery of theories which correspond to the facts, and even though he may no longer label such theories 'true,' nothing else need change.

    Suppose that the scientist lost his car keys and searched thoroughly to no avail. The philosopher then convinces him that the word 'key' really refers to a writing utensil, and therefore, advises that he search for that instead.
    The philosopher is a wily bastard isn't he?
    The scientist seems not to have much wit*: How certain are you that he's not a scientologist?

    ...

    In any case --
    The scientologist doesn't recognize that what the car needs remains the same even since the philosopher re-routed the scientologist's vocabulary.

    What's the point of this part of the story? Even after having read, several times, the next section of your post, I fail to see what sense you're trying to make.

    Words do not have real or essential meanings. For example, the word 'post' can refer to many different things--including a piece of wood set upright into the ground as a marker, a starting point at a racetrack, or an electronic message sent to a forum. But do these alternative interpretations constitute theories of post? Would it be sensible to argue about which theory of post is correct? The meaning a word is not a matter of discovering its real or essential meaning, but of negotiating a conventional use and interpretation. And although this principle is uncontroversial regarding words like 'key' and 'post,' it is often forgotten when discussing the word 'truth.'
    And what a nasty problem this is.

    So then, you mean to say that...
    What the fuck are you saying? I'm searching with difficulty for cohesion.
    You've misaligned an analogy.



    *The scient(olog)ist has theories based on facts that don't correspond with the results -- facts that would follow experimentation: other facts. So his theory must be based on the wrong facts. Or too few of them.
    So he doesn't really have theories based on facts.
    He has theories based on incomplete data, otherwise they would correspond to the world, which was, I remember, his original intention, with invariable accuracy and this entire discussion would never breathed its first breath.
    On top of that, he trusts a philosopher, who, no doubt, works in construction, and dismisses the notion of his failure and, instead of correcting his theories so that they're not only proven right, and are based on facts.
    This entire incident is highly akin to the problems struck out by euphemism.
    we fukin won boys

  10. #30
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Didums View Post
    So, if one group comes together and says "We believe black holes exist because we observe their effects on spacetime and energy" and another group says "We believe black holes don't exist because it is logically impossible to fit an increasing amount of matter into a single point" thats the kind of disagreement you speak of?
    I think it would be more like one person saying that black holes exist because we have evidence for them (correspondence), while the other person says black holes exist because they make our theories of the universe more coherent (pragmatic).

    Superstring theory is a good example. We don't have evidence for them, but they make physics more coherent and elegant. The pragmatists would say "this is truth because it helps us understand the world better." The correpondence theorists would say "that's not truth because there's no evidence." At least, this would be the case if the 2 paragraphs I skimmed in Wikipedia were well-written.

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