Our most basic axioms

Author: secularmerlin ,

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  • secularmerlin
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    In the interest of a fresh start let us begin at the beginning. I will state my most basic axiom (deeply held personal beliefs from which I build outwards) and I welcome critiques and also encourage others to share their own most basic axiom.

    My most fundamental and basic axiom is as follows.

    I am experiencing something.

    That's it. That is all I can be 100% sure of. Even if the I in 'I am' turns put to be nothing more than the sum total of the experiential data.

    Any attempt to address this experience or to communicate with any other apparent conciousnesses within it (other people for example) requires that I first accept the experience I am having more or less at face value and I cannot actually falsify this proposition. That being the case any proposition within that framework that cannot be falsified even if I do make the assumption that my personal perceived reality reflects some 'actual' reality must therefore be dismissed as doubly insupportable. 

    Thank you for reading and for any contribution you should make to the thread...if any of this is actually happening of course.

    Yours skeptically secularmerlin.
  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    Perhaps we could start with something more fundamental. If understanding one another's viewpoint is our goal in these discussions then it couldn't hurt to start with our starting assumptions.

  • Tarik
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    You first
  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    My most fundamental and basic axiom is as follows.

    I am experiencing something.

    That's it. That is all I can be 100% sure of. Even if the I in 'I am' turns put to be nothing more than the sum total of the experiential data.

    Any attempt to address this experience or to communicate with any other apparent conciousnesses within it (other people for example) requires that I first accept the experience I am having more or less at face value and I cannot actually falsify this proposition. That being the case any proposition within that framework that cannot be falsified even if I do make the assumption that my personal perceived reality reflects some 'actual' reality must therefore be dismissed as doubly insupportable. 

    (Restated from previous)

  • Tarik
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    --> @secularmerlin
    This is too vague to demand a response from, what specifically are you experiencing?
  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    Presumably my organic human brain's best approximation of reality such as it is. I cannot devise a test however which doesnot rely directly on this input so I cannot be completely certain. I can however be certain that this is the only reality of which I am aware. That being the case there seems no sensible reason not to interact with it as though it were real (more or less) until I am presented with definitive proof one way or another. In other words I don't know with absolute certainty that anything exists but in a much as I don't have a reason to participate and engage reality I also have no reason not to and I do have emotional attachments within that framework which actually encourages interaction. 
  • Tarik
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    --> @secularmerlin
    I also have no reason not to
    That’s not how logic works you can’t prove a negative, and you can emote all you want but if you believe others should have the same emotional appeals then you’re gonna have to provide something more than a fallacy to be convincing.
  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    All things being equal but all things are not equal and I do have reasons at least even if none of this is real. Even if my hand doesn't exist it still hurts when it is closed in an equally nonexistent door. This isn't rocket science. 
  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    That’s not how logic works you can’t prove a negative, and you can emote all you want but if you believe others should have the same emotional appeals then you’re gonna have to provide something more than a fallacy to be convincing.
    What is it you think I am trying to convince you of? These are my axioms. You don't have to share them in order for us to have a discussion but it couldn't hurt if you at least understand them.
  • Tarik
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    What is it you think I am trying to convince you of? 
    Before I answer I think it’s important I have the right idea, what does it mean “to participate and engage reality”?
  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    “to participate and engage reality”?
    A good example would be having this conversation with you and affording you respect as an interlocutor.
  • Tarik
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    What is it you think I am trying to convince you of? 
    That a fallacy is logical.
  • secularmerlin
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    Please elaborate. 
  • Tarik
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    You literally said emotions is the sole reason behind your decisions, what did you mean to accomplish by telling me that? That being impulsive is reasonable? Are you suggesting that I should be impulsive in that same regard?
  • secularmerlin
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    You literally said emotions is the sole reason behind your decisions, what did you mean to accomplish by telling me that? That being impulsive is reasonable? Are you suggesting that I should be impulsive in that same regard?
    I am not suggesting that you do or believe anything. I am simply explaining what I believe and why I believe it. 
  • Tarik
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    And I’m saying if you don’t believe there’s proof validating your emotions then you shouldn’t have them.
  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    Also and I can't stress this enough the actual experiences themselves can constitute a reason to engage. Some experiences are enjoyable while others are unenjoyable or even distressing or painful. 
  • Tarik
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    You can’t be so vague with me, what kind of experiences?

  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    And I’m saying if you don’t believe there’s proof validating your emotions then you shouldn’t have them.
    I'm not sure what this means. Validate my emotions how? Prove them to whom? 
  • secularmerlin
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    You can’t be so vague with me, what kind of experiences?
    Sight, smell, taste, touch and sound at least.
  • Tarik
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    Sight, smell, taste, touch and sound at least.
    It’s kind of hard not to engage in those things and stay alive, are you sure that’s mainly what you meant?
  • secularmerlin
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    It’s kind of hard not to engage in those things and stay alive, are you sure that’s what you meant?
    I mean that the experiences I have give every impression that this is the case. If what I am experiencing is real and I neglect my senses enough to wander into dangerous situation then I have every reason to suspect that I will stop experiencing things altogether and even if it isn't I have no wish to experience the possible pain. I don't necessarily have to believe in this reality to justify living my life just as I always have. There is benefit to learning about this framework and reacting to stimuli in a way that is likely to promote (possibly illusionary) happiness and avoid (possibly illusionary) pain. 

    I am not trying to win you over to this point of view, in fact I am perfectly willing to accept this reality at face value. It hardly makes sense to engage with you while simultaneously denying your existence and personhood. That being said even if I accept reality at face value there is no sufficient evidence to believe that any god(s) are a part of this reality. The same goes for ghosts, goblins, unicorns, leprechauns, alien abduction, bigfoot,the loch ness monster and any kind of intrinsic objective morality. 
  • Tarik
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    I am not trying to win you over to this point of view, in fact I am perfectly willing to accept this reality at face value.
    ... Then what’s the point of this forum?
  • secularmerlin
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    --> @Tarik
    Please elaborate. 
  • Tarik
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    That’s for you not me, I’m not trying to be hard on you but it seems to me that you’re attempting to explain your mentality but when I ask questions about it you have no answer, seems to me that you need to do more soul searching within yourself because you seem uncertain about a lot of things.