Tom Caylor wrote:

Brent Meeker wrote:
Tom Caylor wrote:
> I tried to address everything but ran out of time/energy.  If there is
> something I deleted from a previous post that I cut out that you wanted
> me to address, just bring it back up.
> Bruno Marchal wrote:
>> Le 26-d c.-06,   19:54, Tom Caylor a  crit :
>> >
>> > On Dec 26, 9:51 am, Bruno Marchal <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
>> >> Le 25-d c.-06,   01:13, Tom Caylor a  crit :
>> >>
>> >> > The "crux" is that he is not symbolic...
>> >
>> >>
>> >> I respect your belief or faith, but I want to be frank, I have no
>> >> evidences for the idea that "Jesus" is "truth", nor can I be sure of
>> >> any clear meaning such an assertion could have, or how such an
>> >> assertion could be made scientific, even dropping Popper falsification
>> >> criteria. I must say I have evidences on the contrary, if only the
>> >> fact
>> >> that humans succumb often to wishful thinking, and still more often to
>> >> their parents wishful thinking.
>> >>
>> >
>> > If you are not sure of any clear meaning of the personal God being the
>> > source of everything, including of course truth, this entails not
>> > knowing the other things too.
>> Is that not an authoritative argument?
>> What if I ask to my student an exam question like give me an argument
>> why the square root of 3 is irrationnal. Suppose he gives me the
>> correct and convincing usual (mathematical) proof. I could give him a
>> bad note for not adding: "and I know that is the truth because truth is
>> a gift by God".
>> Cute, I can directly give bad notes to all my students, and this will
>> give me more time to find a falsity in your way to reason ...
> Just to clear this up, my above statement was not meant to be an
> argument. I purposefully used the word "entail" rather than "imply".  I
> wasn't saying that you cannot believe in some kind of truth without
> believing in the personal God.  However is makes sense *from my
> perspective* (of belief in the personal God) that you do not have a
> basis for any truth on which personhood can be based, which *from my
> perspective* (which I *have* been arguing for in general) needs more
> than the impersonal core.
>> The card records facts. To judge them historical is already beyond my
>> competence. Why the bible? Why not "the question of king Milinda" ?
> My approach on the Everything List has been to argue for the necessity
> of the personal God as the ultimate basis for Everything.  If someone
> wants to research the historical record sufficiently to convince
> themselves one way or another about the Bible or Jesus' resurrection,
> that's great, and I can give them some sources, but it's probably too
> contingent for this List.  But I do have response to your comment on
> universal-ness below.
>> > My whole argument is that without it our hope eventually runs out and
>> > we are left with despair,

Speak for yourself.

My above statement is in the context of an a long explanation I've put
forth in previous posts regarding the conclusions of modern philosophy.
I explain below that I am referring to nihilism when I use the word
"despair".  This is not my own fabrication, but comes from the wording
used by the modern existentialist philosophers.

>> unless we lie to ourselves against the
>> > absence of hope.

So are you lying to yourself because otherwise you would despair?

Again, this is in the context of what I've said before about
reductionism and existentialism.  The "lie" refers to having to act "as
if" (originated with Kant) certain things like free will are real even
though we "know" they are not, in order to avoid nihilism.  Again, some
examples are of people who maintain a view along these lines are Marvin
Minsky (Society of Mind), Steven Pinker (How The Mind Works), Dennett
(who holds that language about purpose, intention, feelings does not
belong to science, but is indispensable to ordinary discourse), and
even eliminative materialists (Searle; Daniel Wegner's "The Illusion of
Conscious Will") concede that a concept of self remains a convenient
fiction that in practice we can't do without.  These examples were
given in Nancy Pearcey's book Total Truth, although I don't agree with
everything she says.

But none of those people are nihilists.  They just deny that there are values 
independent of individual's values.  And Dennett has defended a compatibilist 
free will in at least two books.


>> Here Stathis already give a genuine comment. You are just admitting
>> your argument is "wishful thinking".
> I was being too poetic ;)  By "despair" I meant nihilism, the belief
> that there ultimately is no meaning.

But your argument still is an appeal to wishful thinking.

I am arguing that the ultimate
> source of meaning has to be personal.  I'm just saything that my
> argument is of the form, "If meaning is not ultimately based on the
> personal God, then there is no true meaning, because..."

If meaning is personal, and I'm a person, then I create meaning. To postulate a personal God to supply "ultimate" personal meaning seems otiose. It's like the first-cause argument for God. If God can exist uncaused then why not stop the regress with an uncaused universe - which has the additional advantage of obviously existing.

Brent Meeker

Brent Meeker

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