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LDS Apologetic Response to Atheistic Materialism


cksalmon

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But Dummet shows very powerfully that problems in Metaphysics (in his case, Numbers) are not based on language.

Glad you are staying on top of this.

Why does is matter if he is Catholic?

Since when has anyone been discussing if numbers are based on language?

I am about done wasting time on you. As I pointed out, the fact or non-fact of whether or not numbers are based on language is not relevant to this discussion, nor to the point I was making about Wittgenstein.

It matters that he is a Catholic, because if you notice the OP of this thread, it is about a Mormon reply to atheism.

You were citing Dummet as being opposed to "what I am doing on this thread" which is defending a rational basis for theism, while in fact Dummet is "on my side" and most definitely a theist.

Sorry you are not staying on top of this.

I am done with you here. This is exactly what you do on the trailer park- and just like Gad especially you start off with condescending passive-aggressive put-downs and then proceed to play to the "peanut gallery" with absolutely no substantive point whatsoever, and keep wearing down your victim with little personal jabs designed to irritate and put down. You are so much like Gad- and Scratch, I wonder.... I really do. They have at least taught you well their tricks, and perhaps there is more to it than that. I don't know or care.

If I had the power I would kick out off this thread- you just wear and wear and wear and never stop posting your silly jibes. That's it.

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If I had the power I would kick out off this thread- you just wear and wear and wear and never stop posting your silly jibes. That's it.

Hey dude, just chill for a bit, k, relax, read some scriptures, listen to some nice music, I don't want you feeling this upset over him... k... understand... don't let someone else get to you like this.

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Since when has anyone been discussing if numbers are based on language?

LOL! I would buy you a beer for that one, or a rootbeer (I don't drink)

But, I would imagine that when people debate if numbers are Platonic, they don't actually argue useing numbers, but with words and sentences.

I am about done wasting time on you. As I pointed out, the fact or non-fact of whether or not numbers are based on language is not relevant to this discussion, nor to the point I was making about Wittgenstein.

I imagine it's pretty relevent, since it is a clear example of a Metaphysical dispute that isn't based on those confounding language games.

It matters that he is a Catholic, because if you notice the OP of this thread, it is about a Mormon reply to atheism.

I was not aware that using Non-Athesit and Non-Mormon Philosophers was off limits. Should I got back and edit out my Martin Buber comments too?

You were citing Dummet as being opposed to "what I am doing on this thread" which is defending a rational basis for theism, while in fact Dummet is "on my side" and most definitely a theist.

I was citing Dummet to oppose your notion of language games, not your Theism.

I am done with you here. This is exactly what you do on the trailer park- and just like Gad especially you start off with condescending passive-aggressive put-downs and then proceed to play to the "peanut gallery" with absolutely no substantive point whatsoever, and keep wearing down your victim with little personal jabs designed to irritate and put down. You are so much like Gad- and Scratch, I wonder.... I really do. They have at least taught you well their tricks, and perhaps there is more to it than that. I don't know or care.

It is not substantive to invoke a major philosopher to show how the philosophical landscape has changed since the early 20th cent. ???

If I had the power I would kick out off this thread- you just wear and wear and wear and never stop posting your silly jibes. That's it.

Well, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to offer silly jibes.

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Well Tao, I'm a little uncomfortable with morality being linked to reward and punishment. It makes us out to be Pavlov's dogs instead of being truly free.

Ah, I believe in freedom of agency, but I don't believe in freedom from responsibility.

In a place without responsibility, true, you will be free of that, but you will find that you are bound in many more ways than you would have been.

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Well Tao, I'm a little uncomfortable with morality being linked to reward and punishment. It makes us out to be Pavlov's dogs instead of being truly free.

I think it reduces the ultimate moral imperative into self-interest. There's an irony when the theist invokes God's contribution to morality being a provider of ultimate reward and punishment. What is implicit is that one ought to act in one's self-interest (to maximize reward/minimize punishment). Not only is this moral stance something a theist generally finds disagreeable, it also is something equally open to the atheist to adopt regardless of whether God exists. So God's contribution to morality ends up being a "fudge factor" to align your self-interest with the kind of moral obligations the believer wants you to have.

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I think it reduces the ultimate moral imperative into self-interest. There's an irony when the theist invokes God's contribution to morality being a provider of ultimate reward and punishment. What is implicit is that one ought to act in one's self-interest (to maximize reward/minimize punishment). Not only is this moral stance something a theist generally finds disagreeable, it also is something equally open to the atheist to adopt regardless of whether God exists. So God's contribution to morality ends up being a "fudge factor" to align your self-interest with the kind of moral obligations the believer wants you to have.

No, the reason he rewards and punishes doesn't have to do with self interest actually, that is, if one takes it from a Mormon perspective. From a Mormon perspective, the morals are there to prepare you for greater responsibility - and God can't let people who break his rules into that responsibility. The morals, well, their purpose is to teach us how to live, so we can achieve this responsibility.

This is similar how to school is there to help teach us so we can be adults. However, when you get bad grades in school - there can be all sorts of consequences - retaking a year, having parents unhappy with you, etc. However, there can also be many positive rewards if you do well - scholarships, recommendations, knowledge, etc.

Perhaps I shouldn't have used the word 'punishment' in earlier posts - for rarely does God actually 'punish' people. In fact, the lowest place people normally go (not counting Outer Darkness) is the Terrestrial Kingdom, which is still much much more glorious than here. So really, either way your getting rewarded. And similarly to after school, when you have a job, the more you know, the better you are paid, and if you are really good, you get a very important job in the company, and using your ability up there, you help hire even more people, building an even bigger company.

Now, we don't want people who don't know how to run the business to run the company do we? Similarly, God doesn't want people who haven't learned the lessons they were supposed to here on Earth being in the highest position he has to offer. In his wisdom, he has recognized that not all people will reach there, and so he's provided lesser rewards for those who don't reach that position.

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No, the reason he rewards and punishes doesn't have to do with self interest actually, that is, if one takes it from a Mormon perspective.

I'm only talking about the perspective of someone who thinks that belief in God contributes something meaningful to understanding the nature of morality or our ability to follow it and offers God as a moral motivator through reward and punishment. One is not morally obligated to do what best rewards you or avoid what most punishes you unless one is morally obligated to act in one's self-interest. But if one is morally obligated to act in self-interest, then this should remain true regardless of where the rewards and punishments are coming from. So God isn't helping out here. That was the crux of my point.

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I'm only talking about the perspective of someone who thinks that belief in God contributes something meaningful to understanding the nature of morality or our ability to follow it and offers God as a moral motivator through reward and punishment. One is not morally obligated to do what best rewards you or avoid what most punishes you unless one is morally obligated to act in one's self-interest. But if one is morally obligated to act in self-interest, then this should remain true regardless of where the rewards and punishments are coming from. So God isn't helping out here. That was the crux of my point.

Ah, but I am not talking about belief in God, I am talking about belief there is no God - it makes morals pointless, because you can ignore them if you would like, and not be responsible later. However, in this world, God has a sense of justice, and he won't suffer that no responsibility is taken by those who hurt others, indeed, he applies universal morals to let people know what the rules are, and when the rules are broken, that's when the justice occurs.

In other words, morals are God's law, given to every man.

Reward and lack of Reward are the justice he applies for their actions concerning that law.

"And if ye shall say there is no law, ye shall also say there is no sin. If ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness there be no happiness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not there is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away." (2 Nephi 2:13)
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Anyone who thinks this is about reward and punishment does not understand love very well at all.

This is about love. If you don't understand that, there is nothing much I can say to you. There is no argument possible.

Once you have felt his love, there can be no question about what course to take. I suppose one could see that as a "reward"- but if you look at it like that, it is here and now, not pie in the sky.

If living according to certain commandments could make you know things you couldn't possibly know rationally and give you periods of feelings of eternal bliss, uh, I think most people would be all over that.

And of course those who have been so privileged are.

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I wonder if atheists feel that when they "follow the commandments". Perhaps. But they ignore the coorelation between doing so and the feeling because they lack the rational frame of reference to account for it.

Just musings.

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Interesting. Does G stand alone in it's goodness like A-F? Also, if I get 5 units of meaning out of A, but I take on G, could I get something like another 3 units of meaning? If so, how does that work? If the meaning I find in my relationship with my girlfriend is good, how does the Mormon Faith make it better than good? By making a metaphysical promise that we'll be together forever? I think there are some unfounded assumptions that any relationship is automatically made even better by the concept of it lasting for eternity.

Sure, G stands alone in its goodness, but also enhances the other. How does this work? I dunno. In LDS doctrine the idea would be that we are all family, and by our very nature the growth of indwelling, self-sacrificial love fulfills our deepest nature and potentialities. One does not _meet_ God in the LDS view, one is being _reintroduced_ or _remembering_ a relationship that goes back for eons. One has come home again.

I'm surprised this seems unusual. It happens all the time with mortal relationships:

a) Your relationship with a child is a good in its own right. [Good "g"]

b) So is your relationship with your spouse. [Good "a-f"]

Yet, the act of having a child [g] with a spouse [a-f] adds things to the spouse relationship that weren't there before. As you watch your child grow-up and that relationship develops, it does something and adds something to the relationship with your spouse. If you've not experienced it, you'll have to take the word of the many who have. (If it didn't add something, I suspect that thousands of couples would not pay large amounts every year to successfully conceive a child through IVF and other reproductive technologies.)

I don't know that adding "units of meaning" is the proper way to think about it (how would such be measured? It seems to reify a matter that doesn't lend itself to direct quantification), but it's a useful model or analogy, perhaps.

Duration is one factor, but not necessarily the only one (or, perhaps, the one that will initially appeal or attract us--though with time it may become a very important factor. People feel differently about such things at, say, 20 and age 60. And, as relationships expand outward and encompass more people, it also becomes more relevant.)

I think it just raises some very difficult questions between Free Will, an all loving God who wants a relationship with us, and reasonable non-belief.

I would be interested in hearing more about what you think these questions are.

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