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  1. #21
    Senior Member TheLastMohican's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    Could you experience a square-circle?
    What do you mean by a square-circle? Is this supposed to be something we cannot comprehend literally?

  2. #22
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    Experience could disprove what?

    Are you saying it is possible to experience a square-circle?
    Not at all. I'm saying it may be possible to experience something other than a square-circle that would disprove a square-circle. You don't have to experience an idea to disprove it, because you can experience other things that disprove the idea. Let's say I made the claim that a meteoroid hit and destroyed New York yesterday. Do you have to live in New York to disprove the idea? Or could other experiences, such as watching the news disprove that idea? We have reason so we don't have to directly experience an idea to disprove it, we can use associated experiences to disprove it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Duke of York View Post
    I guess we're mostly on the same page then, except I think that there is an ideal reasoning that no human has truly reached; but some of the greatest minds have been able to reason largely above their own plane of experience, and form concepts that defy reasoning that stems only from experience. Very few people could do that, though.
    Well I believe in God even though I have never experienced him, so perhaps that proves I am capable of understanding concepts that defy reason largely above the plane of experience. What do you think? I suppose it is also possible that I'm guessing at a possibility, but won't I look like the genius if I am proven right? Maybe that is all higher reasoning really is...people making guesses based on the available information. If they are proven right for those guesses, it would sure make them seem like they were capable of reasoning beyond their own experience, but the reality is they were just the lucky ones who had enough experience to make the right guess. So what does Occam's Razor suggest for you? Do you think some people are capable of superhuman reasoning that transcends experience or do you think some people are just better guessers than others when it comes to interpreting the experience they have?

    BTW, are studying philosophy and/or debate currently? You seem quite good at this sort of thing, and expressing your views coherently with precise wording (more precise than mine, I admit).
    One word. Experience.

    Thank you though.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  3. #23
    Senior Member TheLastMohican's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    Well I believe in God even though I have never experienced him, so perhaps that proves I am capable of understanding concepts that defy reason largely above the plane of experience. What do you think?
    I also believe in God, and that is another example of a concept that we can try to imagine, but cannot fully understand. Yet we still believe God exists. I do not think that belief defies reason, though. Their are a number of philosophical ideas that support his existence, along with rational conclusions based on scientific evidence. We are not just guessing in the dark; you can't have much confidence in something that you make up arbitrarily.

    I suppose it is also possible that I'm guessing at a possibility, but won't I look like the genius if I am proven right? Maybe that is all higher reasoning really is...people making guesses based on the available information. If they are proven right for those guesses, it would sure make them seem like they were capable of reasoning beyond their own experience, but the reality is they were just the lucky ones who had enough experience to make the right guess.
    Some of those really weird concepts (which may turn out to be true) required some pretty big leaps of imagination to conceive of. Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity has been more or less proven, and it is such a weird-sounding idea to the Newtonian physicist. Your theory is probably true for most cases, but I think there are exceptions. When we are talking about some of the greater strainings of human mental flexibility, then I think we cannot really tell unless we ask they person who came up with the idea. With some of the simpler concepts, we can usually trace the reasoning after the fact. It is a very complicated question, though, so my answer is mixed.

    So what does Occam's Razor suggest for you? Do you think some people are capable of superhuman reasoning that transcends experience or do you think some people are just better guessers than others when it comes to interpreting the experience they have?
    Aha...you knew about Occam's Razor and yet you claim to be an amatuer? (I had to look it up.)
    I'm afraid I do not understand how Occam's Razor applies to answering your question, though.
    Hard to say (see my rambling above). When I think of someone like Newton, I lean towards superhuman reasoning, since it would be pretty hard to guess all the stuff he got correct. But the beauty of his Principia is that one principle leads to another, and they all support each other, so if he guessed one or two things correctly, he could construct the rest of it using a little math background and some commen sense.

    One word. Experience.

    Thank you though.
    Your welcome. Experience...me too. But so often when I try to have a debate with someone, the person spews forth emotional and/or illogical statements, and when I disprove them or use too many big words in my explanation, all I get in response is or :steam: or or .
    It gets pretty frustrating.

  4. #24
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Well I guess we will just have to agree to disagree when it comes to the potential of human beings to reason. What I meant by asking you to apply the concept of Occam's Razor was to consider if the two options were equal, which would be the simpler explanation, because that one is most likely to be true. I reason that the simpler explanation is that people are capable of inventing extraordinary concepts in their mind, based completely on intuition and the available information. However, I imagine that these are still only hunches and visions of what might be true, not a superhuman ability to reason beyond experience. They just seem that way in retrospect after they have been proven.

    In essence, many of Einstein's theories would have just been leaps of faith on his part based on what he reasoned could be true, and as they have been proven true, it makes him appear as if he had superhuman capacities to reason, when in actuality, he simply had amazing intuition, much of which he derived from his reasoning from the available information.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  5. #25
    Senior Member TheLastMohican's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    Well I guess we will just have to agree to disagree when it comes to the potential of human beings to reason. What I meant by asking you to apply the concept of Occam's Razor was to consider if the two options were equal, which would be the simpler explanation, because that one is most likely to be true. I reason that the simpler explanation is that people are capable of inventing extraordinary concepts in their mind, based completely on intuition and the available information. However, I imagine that these are still only hunches and visions of what might be true, not a superhuman ability to reason beyond experience. They just seem that way in retrospect after they have been proven.

    In essence, many of Einstein's theories would have just been leaps of faith on his part based on what he reasoned could be true, and as they have been proven true, it makes him appear as if he had superhuman capacities to reason, when in actuality, he simply had amazing intuition, much of which he derived from his reasoning from the available information.
    Fair enough. It was a good, civilized debate while it lasted. (I also post at the INTJ forum. It's nice there, but the debates...whew. Lots of "brick walls," but some people will just not drop the subject even when it is clear there can be no meeting of the minds.)

    Do mind me asking what your type is? I gather you are not an INTJ, but you seem pretty close to me. INFJ? INTP? (When someone is called the "typeless" one, I just get more curious.)

  6. #26
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duke of York View Post
    Fair enough. It was a good, civilized debate while it lasted. (I also post at the INTJ forum. It's nice there, but the debates...whew. Lots of "brick walls," but some people will just not drop the subject even when it is clear there can be no meeting of the minds.)

    Do mind me asking what your type is? I gather you are not an INTJ, but you seem pretty close to me. INFJ? INTP? (When someone is called the "typless" one, I just get more curious.)
    INFJ.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

  7. #27
    Senior Member TheLastMohican's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    INFJ.
    I knew it! Well, kinda.

    I am wondering why so few people have posted here...does the topic sound that boring? I hope the thread doesn't die off, since the subject matter seems so rich.

    People, we need some more opinions here! Any true Rationalists? Or Empiricists who are not "tempered by reason?"

  8. #28
    desert pelican Owl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duke of York View Post
    What do you mean by a square-circle? Is this supposed to be something we cannot comprehend literally?
    Well, if somone said that he understood that something could be both a square and a circle at the same time, in the same respect, that would mean that he didn't understand either what a square is or what a circle is.

    In this sense, a square-cirlce is not something that can be comprehended.

  9. #29
    desert pelican Owl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    Not at all. I'm saying it may be possible to experience something other than a square-circle that would disprove a square-circle. You don't have to experience an idea to disprove it, because you can experience other things that disprove the idea. Let's say I made the claim that a meteoroid hit and destroyed New York yesterday. Do you have to live in New York to disprove the idea? Or could other experiences, such as watching the news disprove that idea? We have reason so we don't have to directly experience an idea to disprove it, we can use associated experiences to disprove it.
    Must we refer to some experience in order to prove or disprove something? Is there no a priori knowledge?

  10. #30
    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    Must we refer to some experience in order to prove or disprove something?
    Yes.

    Is there no a priori knowledge?
    No. Even if there was, what difference would it make without the experience to interpret it? "A=A" only if you know what "A" means and what "=" means. A priori was devised from human reason, which in turn was derived from human experience. That is how all knowledge has been accumulated. It's a short cut in reasoning, but just like everything else, it too had to be learned.

    The only knowledge we are born with is that which is encoded in our genes. That information manifests itself in our instincts and the resulting behaviors. So you could make the argument that DNA is the true a priori, but even it has manifested itself from the experience of countless species through evolution and if we were all to cease to exist then it would cease to exist with us.
    Quote Originally Posted by Silently Honest View Post
    OMNi: Wisdom at the cost of Sanity.

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