What is Faith?

Komodo

Well-known member
I dispute P1, P1 has not been demonstrated to be true. So if P1 has not been demonstrated to be true, then the whole argument fails.
P1 is, "If naturalism is true, then chemical actions (which are in themselves non-rational) cause mental states in people such as considering, judging and concluding." Are you saying that "chemical actions cause mental states" is not the claim of naturalism? Then what is the claim of naturalism regarding the cause of mental states?

Or are you -- once again! -- refusing to see the difference between a statement about what naturalism claims to be true, and a statement that naturalism is true? Because if you mean "it has not been demonstrated that chemical reactions cause mental states," that's exactly what you are doing. If P1 had been "chemical reactions cause mental states," then "that has not been demonstrated" would be a reasonable objection. But that's not what P1 says. What P1 says is "If naturalism is true, then chemical reactions cause mental states." That's a true statement, even if naturalism is not true, and chemical reactions do not cause mental states!

"If flat earthers are right, then if you travel far enough in any direction, you will eventually come to the great ice wall." This is a true statement, even though such an ice wall has not, of course, been demonstrated to exist. It's a true statement of what flat earthers believe. The same principle applies to my P1.
 
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El Cid

Active member
The difference between the physical and non-physical is insurmountable if anything is insurmountable. Yes, I made a mistake in my statement.
First, this is just a proclamation, not a demonstration. Second, though you say you make a mistake, you have not withdrawn the claim that the non-physical can cause the physical (see below). If that is the case, you can't possibly say that this is an "insurmountable" difference!
It is insurmountable by non-supernatural forces.
El Cid said:
Yes they are two different claims.
Then if I dispute claim 1), it does no good for you to reply by asserting claim 2), or vice versa.

El Cid said:
No, if naturalism were true we would be automatons without a free will and unable to freely evaluate the premises and evidence.
I just finished saying -- in the part you're replying to -- that I've repeatedly addressed this claim but you have made no effort to show why my counter-arguments are wrong: you just repeat the claim. And again you simply make no effort to show why I'm wrong, you just again repeat the claim. But I'm going to try once more:

1. If naturalism is true, then chemical reactions cause logical reasoning based on premises and weighing of evidence.
2. If it is true that chemical reactions cause logical reasoning based on premises and weighing of evidence, then it must be true that logical reasoning based on premises and weighing of evidence is real.
3. If logical evidence based on premises and weighing of evidence is real, then logical evidence based on premises and weighing of evidence can be the real cause of our conclusions.
Therefore, if naturalism is true, then logical evidence based on premises and weighing of evidence can be the real cause of our conclusions.

So, now could you please, please, tell me which of those premises you dispute?

Maybe we can start small, and you can tell me if you dispute the following proposition: if an argument is presented, and you don't dispute the premises, and you don't dispute that the conclusion follows logically from those premises, you can't reasonably dispute the conclusion. Agree?

I'd really, seriously like an answer to this. If you don't agree, if you're just asserting that you can't tell me where my argument is wrong, but you know that it is... then I think you can see why this is an obstacle to discussion.
From the viewpoint of the actual evidence, premise 1 is false, from the viewpoint of someone that believes in naturalism then yes, the argument is hypothetically valid.
El Cid said:
Just because the mind can not articulate the memory to the outside world due to the brain damage does not mean it is lost.
People with Korsakoff's don't just have a problem "articulating the memory to the outside world": they simply fail to retain the memory. A Korsakoff's patient asks whether his father will visit him today, and is told that his father has died. Naturally, he cries at this news. Next day, he asks again whether his father will visit him today, and is again told that his father has died. Again, he cries at this news, which is obviously new to him. Next day, he asks again...

How can you possibly say that the memory of his father's death remains in his undamaged mind, when he behaves entirely as if he has no memory that his father has died?

El Cid said:
Again, using the computer analogy. if my keyboard was broken you would think that I had lost my ability to acquire short term memory as well.
I don't know what scenario you have in mind -- how we are communicating, what gets broken -- or how it would be analogous to the behavior of the Korsakoff's patient.
It may be in the temporal realm the mind uses the brain to store and retrieve memories. So if the brain is damaged, then the mind cant retrieve the memory.
El Cid said:
You are right, I made a mistake. But I stand by my statement that the physical and nonphysical are very different from each other, but because the mind is made of spirit it can transcend that difference and cause physical effects.
[My emphasis.] Again, if you are not withdrawing the claim that the non-physical can cause the physical, then you can't possibly say that this is an "insurmountable" difference; you're saying it is surmounted every moment for every one of us!
It is insurmountable to natural forces but not supernatural forces.
Also, if the mind does cause neuron firings, what do those firings do?
Enable the body to operate according to the intentions of the mind.
I don't know what scenario you have in mind -- how we are communicating, what gets broken -- or how it would be analogous to the behavior of the Korsakoff's patient.
See above.
 

Komodo

Well-known member
It [the gap between physical and mental] is insurmountable by non-supernatural forces.
You're not giving any reason to accept this proclamation.

From the viewpoint of the actual evidence, premise 1 is false...
No, P1 ("If naturalism is true, chemical reactions cause logical reasoning") is true, even if the evidence shows naturalism to be false, because it is not a claim about what causes reasoning, it is a claim about the position of naturalism.

from the viewpoint of someone that believes in naturalism then yes, the argument is hypothetically valid.

If the earth is flat, all the land and sea is surrounded by the great ice wall.
If the land and sea is surrounded by a giant ice wall, it is possible to reach the great ice wall.
Therefore, if the earth is flat, it is possible to reach the great ice wall

This is a valid syllogism. It isn't "hypothetically valid from the viewpoint of someone that believes in a flat earth," it's valid, period. It's valid because the conclusion necessarily follows if the premises are true. It doesn't require any belief in the flatness of the earth in order to be valid. And exactly the same is true of the syllogism I just offered you. So, again: do you dispute the claim that if you are presented with a syllogism, and you do not dispute either premise, and you do not dispute the logic, you cannot dispute the conclusion?

It may be in the temporal realm the mind uses the brain to store and retrieve memories. So if the brain is damaged, then the mind cant retrieve the memory.
So the failure to remember things when the brain is damaged is not evidence that physical events cause mental events, because it's possible that these mental events go on unaffected in the non-temporal realm, secretly and undiscoverable to all observers, despite the apparent loss of memory?

By that standard, of course -- "it may seem that Y doesn't happen without X, but Y may still be happening, in a realm beyond time and space" -- there's nothing at all which could ever be regarded as evidence for anything.
 
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