Classical Theism, Philosophy, and Religion Forum

You are not logged in. Would you like to login or register?

Theoretical Philosophy » Specified geographical location as a requisite of causation? » Yesterday 7:33 am

surroundx
Replies: 39

Go to post

bmiller wrote:

I think we are in agreement that space is different than a materially existing object and is also different than nothing.  But I disagree that if there is nothing between 2 objects that they not are conjoined.  Because what determines that there is a single material object is a boundary.  If there is nothing between 2 objects, there is no boundary between them, and so they must be considered a single object.

In regards to boundaries between objects, are you talking only about qualitatively identical objects here? For example, prima facie it might seem like two water droplets couldn't be individuated from each other if they merged. But if you divide the total volume of the water by the volume of a single H2O molecule, do you not get the number of individual water molecules that constitute the pool of water?

Skipping ahead to qualitatively non-identical objects, in the case of oil and water the boundary is nothing more than the very nature of the two (or more) objects. While in cases like black and white paint, the resulting conjunction is a new object with roughly intermediate properties (depending upon the proportion of the two paints). 

To be honest, I'm not sure what your criticism is meant to establish. It would feel a little strange perhaps, but importantly not problematic, to accept that the universe is a single object. After all that doesn't nullify the reality of parts to that object, which have certain relations to each other.

bmiller wrote:

But I think you are using the act/potency distinction ambiguously.
For you mention in one place there actually are 10 units of which 2 are actually occupied, implying that the sense of what is actual is 10 possible spaces.  So both spaces and things occupying them exist independently of each other.

But then it seems you shift focus exclusively to objects alone.
Almost like that you consider material objects as a default condition and the lack of objects as a privation of material ob

Theoretical Philosophy » Specified geographical location as a requisite of causation? » 1/16/2018 10:14 am

surroundx
Replies: 39

Go to post

bmiller wrote:

Right.  So if there is nothing between 2 existing cubes, then one cannot insert a third existing cube between them.

If there are no things and no space between them, then one cannot insert a third existing cube between them. However, space is not a thing, but rather the negation of things, and so there being nothing between two cubes does not entail that they are conjoined.

bmiller wrote:

But it can either fit between the other 2 cubes or it not.  If it is too big it won't.  So size does matter.

Absolutely size matters. However, the size of the gap is determined through negation. Imagine that space is singularly horizontal and totals 10, and each of two cubes take up 1 space each. Then 8 spaces are unoccupied, either in virtue of the unactualised potential for a further 8 cubes to exist, or in virtue of the actualised potential for 2 cubes to exist (10-8=2 is the same as 10-2=8). The potential distance between the two cubes ranges from a maximum of 8 to a minimum of 0. The actual distance is determined by locomotion.

Theoretical Philosophy » Specified geographical location as a requisite of causation? » 1/15/2018 10:51 am

surroundx
Replies: 39

Go to post

bmiller wrote:

OK.  Can you fit a cube into nothingness?

No. There is no real into, just as with creatio ex nihilo there is no real out of, nothing(ness).

If a cube exists, it's not that it fits (anywhere), rather it simply is.

Theoretical Philosophy » The Principle of Parsimony » 1/14/2018 1:11 am

surroundx
Replies: 20

Go to post

Greg wrote:

I think that the principle of parsimony is a good principle, but it's an epistemic rather than a metaphysical principle. It's not that the universe is, and surely not that it must be, such that simpler explanations are true. Often they aren't.

Simpler explanations often aren't true because they're too attenuated. In virtue of the fact that the simplest explanations could be said to be epistemic rather than ontic (e.g. "there is nothing to explain"). If you agree that there is something to explain then the simplest explanation is false. That doesn't negatively affect the PoP.

Theoretical Philosophy » The Principle of Parsimony » 1/13/2018 11:44 pm

surroundx
Replies: 20

Go to post

bmiller wrote:

I don't think parsimony alone should determine the plausibility of an argument.
There are other factors to consider such as the argument's explanatory power.

But of course a person will believe what he wants to believe.

Isn't explanatory power just the PoP in disguise? Explaining two facts with one entity is better than explaining two facts with two entities. Since it results in a smaller ontological expansion.

I don't believe what I want to believe. I simply strive not to have a bloated ontology.

Theoretical Philosophy » Specified geographical location as a requisite of causation? » 1/13/2018 11:24 pm

surroundx
Replies: 39

Go to post

bmiller wrote:

What would you call the absence of any qualities whatsoever?

Nothingness.

Theoretical Philosophy » The Principle of Parsimony » 1/13/2018 12:05 pm

surroundx
Replies: 20

Go to post

Jason wrote:

I do not think that this argument can work since for A/T God is the reason we even have our ontology in the first place. So to say that God expands our ontology does not even make sense. Involving God in our ontology does not expand it but explains it.

The argument isn't about God. It's a general argument. I gave the example of God since this is a classical theism forum.

Theoretical Philosophy » The Principle of Parsimony » 1/13/2018 4:19 am

surroundx
Replies: 20

Go to post

bmiller wrote:

OK.  May I ask if what you are getting at is: 
1) Brute facts the simplest explanation for anything
2) Parsimony dictates that we should accept the the simplest explanation
3) Therefore we should accept that existence is a brute fact.

Is this the gist of your inquiry?

No. Something more like this:

1) Not expanding our ontology always takes precedence over expanding it
2) N is already part of our ontology
3) S is not already part of our ontology
4) E is sufficiently explained by S
5) E is non-essentially explained by N
6) Explaining E by N does not involve an expansion to our ontology (from 2 and 5)
7) Explaining E by S does involve an expansion to our ontology (from 3 and 4)
8) Therefore, we should attribute E to N (from 1, 6 and 7)

Theoretical Philosophy » Specified geographical location as a requisite of causation? » 1/13/2018 2:34 am

surroundx
Replies: 39

Go to post

bmiller wrote:

Please give more details for this:
"It is not that things which do not exist have size, it is that the negation of things can vary in size."

What do you consider the difference between "things which do not exist" and "the negation of things"?

I'm interested in your reasoning.

In the former case "things" is an individual subject (viz. qualitatively static). In the latter case, "things" is a much broader subject (viz. not qualitatively static).

Introductions » An atheist, and (unsurprisingly) a hard materialist » 1/13/2018 2:24 am

surroundx
Replies: 4

Go to post

FrenchySkepticalCatholic wrote:

Would you thus develop on what you mean when you say you're a materialist ?

I wrote a relatively long post. Feel free to skip to the very last paragraph

It seems to me that there are three basic questions to ask about matter:

1. Does it exist?
2. What is its nature? (If yes to 1)
3. Is it all that exists?

Technically, only the third question is directly relevant here. But it seems to me that actually the second question is very important too. Since it concerns the nature of material existence, and thus raises the possibility of aspects of reality that cannot be accounted for on a strictly materialist account of reality. Which would then lead one to answer 'no' to the third question. Thus the second question is logically prior to the third, since any 'no' answer to the third question that is not predicated upon the insufficiency of materialist accounts of reality would be merely ad hoc.

The origins of the universe

I often encounter Christian characterizations of atheism as "since you don't believe in God, you must believe that the universe simply popped into existence out of nothing by nothing". Well if one defines the "universe" as all of time, space and matter, and also denies the existence of anything "beyond" those three (since not all atheists are materialists), then certainly if the universe popped into existence there were no possible prior conditions for its existence.

Such a scenario seems to me to be inconsistent with reality, since I cannot see any relevant asymmetry between absolute beginnings and annihilation. If one is possible, then so is the other. And we don't witness things being annihilated. And since there cannot have been any prior conditions of the universe's absolute beginning one cannot posit some kind of irregularity or intrinsic improbability of the universe popping into existence to create an asymmetry with annihilation. Or, as Dr. William Lane Craig points out, some k

Board footera

 

Powered by Boardhost. Create a Free Forum