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  1. #1
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    Default What I Believe in

    Recently, I have noticed a pattern. The pattern is this: after putting forth some different possibilities a person asks, "what do you believe?" Yet it has become so frequent in recent history that my instinct is to greet this question with an ironical smile. This smile is convoluted to say the least and reflects the frequency with which I am asked that question, my anticipation of the reaction to my answer, and perhaps a sense of shame for having tilted my head up and slightly to the left and having to actually think about what I believe. One may think that strong beliefs would not require deep contemplation, but instead should be immediate. But this is not the case with me. As soon as a person asks what I believe in I get stuck in chess, paralyzed by deep contemplation of logical combinations.

    The professor who asked me this question the other day could not have known the meaning behind the mechanical head-tilt to the upper-left followed by a crooked smile. He could not have known that the immediate answer I calculated, and always calculate when asked this question, is that I am an atheist and whenever the question of belief comes up nothing comes to me at all. If anything I have a lack thereof. The smile, the contemplation, all of that is if anything a consideration of how to answer this question in a diplomatic way. For example, I am inclined to say, "I believe in magic," with a slight ring corresponding to the popular song but that would be to mock the person asking the question. So I do not. Part of the pause and contemplation is really a reflection of how I want to go about answering the question so as to not completely condescend from heights unknown to man. They seem to put such high hopes in what I might conjure as if I am a magician or something, that I might churn out some logical combination or insight that will unearth all kinds of new ideas in them that as yet have no names. How cruel would a thinker have to be to give an answer that only mocks them for having asked the question?

    Furthermore, I have resigned myself from engaging in ethical debates, except to clarify or contradict the position of others. This followed automatically once I decided that I want to be a logician on the side; and that the business of ethics could be no business of mine for it could only lead to error in thinking. This is based on the supposition that if a logician is on one side of an issue he is on the wrong side; for taking sides inevitably stifles one's ability for sober and dispassionate logical thinking. On that note, logic is what makes it all stick. Logic is to philosopher as telescope is to astronomer: a tool of discovery. It might be said then that I believe logic will lead me to higher truths and that a problem that is invented by the mind can be solved by it.

    My entire psychology obeys the laws of mathematics. It is a system built on a set of axioms and with clearly defined rules of inference. As such, it is perfectly predictable, and with enough information could be predicted from start to end. Every day I follow the same routine. I leave nothing in my life to chance; I only follow methods that have proven to work over and over again. I am completely formulaic; my capacity for improvization is low. I am linear in logic; nonlinear with an initial intuition, but then I drive my intuition forward in a linear way through rational thinking. I have difficulty following the thought process of other humans as they often depend on different sets of assumptions. When humans reason incorrectly with confidence it can make it difficult to sort out the information. For example, on a daily basis I hear stories that proceed in the following manner. "Like..either I'm going to the grocery store or I'll go and get gas. I am not going to get gas, so I'll go to the mall and pick up some shoes" Here we have A or B, not B therefore Z. This way of thinking is completely alien to me. Yet, even though people do not always reason in a logically valid manner, they nevertheless follow rules. All things in the entire universe, both animate and inanimate, take place according to rules; nowhere is there to be found any irregularity. Should one try to jump as high as the empire state building or run as fast as the speed of light one will soon discover one is unable. Even when logic proper is wanning, humans follow physical, biological, and psychological rules. Nevertheless, from this we can deduce what I do not believe in:

    (1) I do not believe in disorder; for rules entail order. As such, when people say things like "I'm disorganized" they are really referring to their lack of efficiency rather than any objective statement about the organization of the world.

    (2) I do not believe in spiritualism or mysticism of any kind. But, I do think it is a reasonable conjecture that there are life forms elsewhere in the galaxy; after all, we were able to form.

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    Upon reading your post, which follows pretty much the same method of 'belief' I follow by the way. I can't help but notice that the irony is great in your method of formulating belief and logic.

    If everything follows a set of rules. Then what we see as the illogical and irrationality is really actual logical, but just beyond our capability of understanding.. And if you think it through, it pans out. Which is ironically funny, because it basicly means it doesn't matter how we think or do, what we belief in, and so on. Because we simply can't go 'wrong', when you look at the grand scheme of things. Because everything you say, do and think, can be logically explained.

    Well, that's pretty logical ofcourse. But that paradox basicly wipes logic of it's value. How can you strive logic, if it's 100% garanteed? Why make an issue out of logic, when it is incapable of being a problem.

    Anyhow, I'm just Ti'ing your Te here, so I'll stop. :P
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

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    All things in the entire universe, both animate and inanimate, take place according to rules; nowhere is there to be found any irregularity.
    How would one ever arrive to the conclusion something doesn't take place according to rules?


    Also, don't you think a rule is bound by it's sphere and context? Don't you think perception plays a part in it all?

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    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sytpg View Post
    How would one ever arrive to the conclusion something doesn't take place according to rules?



    Just about everyone that believe in whatever diety or form of God, that existed pre-existance? :P

    Quote Originally Posted by Sytpg View Post
    Also, don't you think a rule is bound by it's sphere and context? Don't you think perception plays a part in it all?
    A rule isn't bound by anything, our interpretation and understanding of the rule however is. I think that is the best way to look at logic.
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffywolf View Post
    If everything follows a set of rules. Then what we see as the illogical and irrationality is really actual logical, but just beyond our capability of understanding.. And if you think it through, it pans out. Which is ironically funny, because it basicly means it doesn't matter how we think or do, what we belief in, and so on. Because we simply can't go 'wrong', when you look at the grand scheme of things. Because everything you say, do and think, can be logically explained.
    That's the issue I have with the whole concept. There are always axioms on which we base any further assumptions. But isn't scientific evolution a history of proving previous held beliefs wrong? And isn't it all a matter of perception?

    Is the world round or is it merely there and we call it round? Is it any more round (in reality) than it is flat as far as walking down the street? Could we look at the world from a perspective so zoomed out that calling it round was no longer true?

    All axioms are based on perception. As subjective as their definition and language and meaning,The truth is we are making the rules. So if we assume in advance and believe it is rule-based...i guess it probably becomes so....in our mind anyway.

    Rules are shaped by perception. The question isn't whether they hold true or not...it's if we can twist them so that they do....according to our preconceived idea of what is truth i mean...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Provoker View Post

    Furthermore, I have resigned myself from engaging in ethical debates, except to clarify or contradict the position of others. This followed automatically once I decided that I want to be a logician on the side; and that the business of ethics could be no business of mine for it could only lead to error in thinking. This is based on the supposition that if a logician is on one side of an issue he is on the wrong side; for taking sides inevitably stifles one's ability for sober and dispassionate logical thinking. On that note, logic is what makes it all stick. Logic is to philosopher as telescope is to astronomer: a tool of discovery. It might be said then that I believe logic will lead me to higher truths and that a problem that is invented by the mind can be solved by it.
    Eh. Not if you're referring to your online behavior. Offline, I have no basis for discrimination.


    Quote Originally Posted by Provoker View Post
    My entire psychology obeys the laws of mathematics. It is a system built on a set of axioms and with clearly defined rules of inference. As such, it is perfectly predictable, and with enough information could be predicted from start to end. Every day I follow the same routine. I leave nothing in my life to chance; I only follow methods that have proven to work over and over again. I am completely formulaic; my capacity for improvization is low. I am linear in logic; nonlinear with an initial intuition, but then I drive my intuition forward in a linear way through rational thinking. I have difficulty following the thought process of other humans as they often depend on different sets of assumptions. When humans reason incorrectly with confidence it can make it difficult to sort out the information. For example, on a daily basis I hear stories that proceed in the following manner. "Like..either I'm going to the grocery store or I'll go and get gas. I am not going to get gas, so I'll go to the mall and pick up some shoes" Here we have A or B, not B therefore Z. This way of thinking is completely alien to me.
    ISTJ, for your consideration.

    Quote Originally Posted by Provoker View Post
    Yet, even though people do not always reason in a logically valid manner, they nevertheless follow rules. All things in the entire universe, both animate and inanimate, take place according to rules; nowhere is there to be found any irregularity. Should one try to jump as high as the empire state building or run as fast as the speed of light one will soon discover one is unable. From this, we can deduce what I do not believe in:

    (1) I do not believe in disorder; for rules entail order. As such, when people say this they often are referring to their lack of efficiency (i.e. the current arrangement is not such that they can access things in a timely fashion). In this sense, people often say, "I am disorganized" but I remind them that there is an order it is just not arranged in such a way as to maximize efficiency.

    (2) I do not believe in spiritualism or mysticism of any kind. But, I do think it is a reasonable conjecture that there are life forms elsewhere in the galaxy; after all, we were able to form.
    Brevity, my friend. Brevity.

    Not to unfairly critique, but for saying so much, you offered very little.

    You don't 'believe' as an ideal, and instead require empiricism to formulate an opinion. You enjoy routine, and depend on it as an accessory to your model of thinking. Defending a position during a debate doesn't make sense to you, as doing so requires you to inject personal bias, which destroys opportunity for advancing personal comprehension.

    All of this makes sense. Condensing it into a better format would make you suitably less 'mysterious'. Not sure if that's what you want, though.

    Carry on.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sytpg View Post
    That's the issue I have with the whole concept. There are always axioms on which we base any further assumptions. But isn't scientific evolution a history of proving previous held beliefs wrong? And isn't it all a matter of perception?

    Is the world round or is it merely there and we call it round? Is it any more round (in reality) than it is flat as far as walking down the street? Could we look at the world from a perspective so zoomed out that calling it round was no longer true?

    All axioms are based on perception. The truth is we are making the rules. So if we assume in advance and believe it is rule-based...i guess it probably becomes so....in our mind anyway.

    Rules are shaped by perception. The question isn't whether they hold true or not...it's if we can twist them so that they do....according to our preconceived idea of what is truth i mean...
    Well, then ask yourself the one important question that you can ask yourself based on all this hypothetical mumbo jumbo.

    How do you choose to live your life?

    Because, there is no other reason to speculate on 'the ultimate big picture' apart from that one question. And through our choices in life, we sample small bits and pieces of the big picture according to our own perceptions and truths.

    The irony is that the 'absolute' has been given so much thought by many a philosopher and person. Whilest it's in execution, unproductive and infinitely useless. Because, like you said. It transcends what is and isn't important to us. And if that can't be sampled, then there is nothing to gain from attempting to explore it.

    The pessimistic downside of it all is that you pretty much realize nothing really matters. Everything that seemingly matters, only matters because you believe it to matter. But in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't. So what;s the point of persuing it?

    Other than killing time in the short life we have.
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffywolf View Post
    Upon reading your post, which follows pretty much the same method of 'belief' I follow by the way. I can't help but notice that the irony is great in your method of formulating belief and logic.

    If everything follows a set of rules. Then what we see as the illogical and irrationality is really actual logical.
    No, in order for your paradox to work an equivocation fallacy is necessary. Just because humans all follow algorithms and rules does not entail that they reason logically. When I use the word logic, I have in mind Kant's definition of logic as the science of correct reasoning. It does not follow from the fact that a person cannot jump as high as the empire state building (because they follow rules) that they reason in a logically valid manner. They follow rules, yes, but those rules are the business of psychology. Therefore, your paradox implicitly takes logic to mean psychology. But a person can reason in an invalid manner and still follow rules of psychology, which means there is no paradox. The one concerns how correct reasoning should be conducted; the other how humans do make decisions. Therefore, you've merely created an illusion of paradox by substituting how humans should reason (which is the business of logic) with how humans sometimes make decisions (which is the business of psychology). You also mentioned rationality, which is very different than logic and is not to be confused with or conflated with it.

    Summarily, we have established that an illusion of paradox depended on a false notion of logic. However, once logic was distinguished from principles of psychology, we learned that there is no paradox whereby some humans do not reason logically but can still be called logical.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffywolf
    Well, then ask yourself the one important question that you can ask yourself based on all this hypothetical mumbo jumbo.

    How do you choose to live your life?

    Because, there is no other reason to speculate on 'the ultimate big picture' apart from that one question. And through our choices in life, we sample small bits and pieces of the big picture according to our own perceptions and truths.

    The irony is that the 'absolute' has been given so much thought by many a philosopher and person. Whilest it's in execution, unproductive and infinitely useless. Because, like you said. It transcends what is and isn't important to us. And if that can't be sampled, then there is nothing to gain from attempting to explore it.

    The pessimistic downside of it all is that you pretty much realize nothing really matters. Everything that seemingly matters, only matters because you believe it to matter. But in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't. So what;s the point of persuing it?

    Other than killing time in the short life we have.

    If you ask me, scientists are rarely interested in bettering theirs or anyone else's lives per se. It's not that they can ever fully control the repercussions of their discoveries anyway. I'd say they are often driven more by sheer curiosity and love/hate of the unknown.

    And yeah inherent meaning or "the truth" don't give me as much of a hard on as being happy. So in that sense, I do get choosing to believe in nonsense. Like optimism. Or in this case, rules

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    Quote Originally Posted by Provoker View Post
    No, in order for your paradox to work an equivocation fallacy is necessary. Just because humans all follow algorithms and rules does not entail that they reason logically. When I use the word logic, I have in mind Kant's definition of logic as the science of correct reasoning. It does not follow from the fact that a person cannot jump as high as the empire state building (because they follow rules) that they reason in a logically valid manner. They follow rules, yes, but those rules are the business of psychology. Therefore, your paradox implicitly takes logic to mean psychology. But a person can reason in an invalid manner and still follow rules of psychology, which means there is no paradox. The one concerns how correct reasoning should be conducted; the other how humans do make decisions. Therefore, you've merely created an illusion of paradox by substituting how humans should reason (which is the business of logic) with how humans sometimes make decisions (which is the business of psychology). You also mentioned rationality, which is very different than logic and is not to be confused with or conflated with it.

    Summarily, we have established that an illusion of paradox depended on a false notion of logic. However, once logic was distinguished from principles of psychology, we learned that there is no paradox whereby some humans do not reason logically but can still be called logical.
    And you don't see the irony in your post?

    I am getting where you come from. But in your perspective you've put value to what you deem logical and illogical. In that sense, your belief system is subjective. Which clashes with your 'quest for logic'.

    I was trying to place your belief system, in a much broader perspective. Seeing it not through opinionated eyes. But from a universial perspective. In absolutes.
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

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