On Nov 27, 8:17 pm, Rex Allen <rexallen31...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Fri, Nov 26, 2010 at 7:17 AM, 1Z <peterdjo...@yahoo.com> wrote:
> > On Nov 26, 6:01 am, Rex Allen <rexallen31...@gmail.com> wrote:
> >> So Agrippa's Trilemma revolves around the question of how we can
> >> justify our beliefs.
> >> It seems to me that an entirely acceptable solution is just to accept
> >> that we can't justify our beliefs.
> > ..in an absolute way. We still can relative to other
> > beliefs. And that isn;t a problem specific to higher-level
> > categories such as reason and logic. The Trilemma applies
> > just as much to microphysical causality
> How do you justify your belief that you can justify your beliefs
> relative to other beliefs?


> As for microphysical causality, right, it doesn’t solve any
> ontological problems to introduce it as an explanation because it just
> raises the question “what causes microphysical causality?”

It isn't an absolute explanation. It's still an explanation.
BTW *you* introduced causality in order to deprecate reason
and logic. If you don't believe in physical causality either,
then you should level down.

> And also, if you buy multiple realizability, then you can’t justify
> your belief in one particular microphysical causal structure instead
> of some other functionally isomorphic one.

Yes I can: Occam;s razor. Of course that isn't absolute...

> >>>> As I said before, materialism could conceivably explain human ability
> >>>> and behavior, but in my opinion runs aground at human consciousness.
> >>>> Therefore, I doubt that humans are a complex sort of robot.
> >>> Is human consciousness causally effective?
> >> I don't believe so, no.
> > Then the sense in which we are not robots is somewhat honorific:
> > we are not because we have consciousness, but consc. doesn't
> > explain out behaviour since it doesn't cause anything , so we behave
> > as determined...
> OR, there is no reason we behave as we do.

Whatever. I don't  see how you can be a sceptic about
everything and still insist its a fact you're not a robot.

> >> And claiming that consciousness is itself caused just runs into
> >> infinite regress, as you then need to explain what causes the cause of
> >> conscious experience, and so on.
> > The claim is more that it causes. And it could be causal under
> > interactive dualism (brain causes consc causes different brains state)
> > and it could be causal under mind brain identity: mind is identical
> > to brain; brain causes; therefore mind identically causes.
> If you anesthetize me, the brain is still there.  Where is the mind?

Pfft. If you switch your telly off, you don;t get a picture. Switch
it on again, you do. That doesn't mean the picture is some
additional immaterial thingumajig.

> If you lightly smush my brain in a press, the brain is still there.
> Is the mind still there?

The brain is not there in a meaningful sense. You can't
read a copy of War and Peace tat's been pulped. Obviously
in these contexts "the brain" doesn't just mean so many
electrons, protons, and neutrons, it means something
material that has a certain structure and function. The
atoms and molecules can be replaced over time,
the structure and functions is vital

> Assuming multiple realizability, if you run a simulation of me on a
> computer, the mind is there.  Where is the brain?

If you have one, it is, under those circumstances,
identical to the structural and functioning silicon substrate.

Multiple realisability doesn't preclude token identity.

> Mind-brain identity doesn’t seem so convincing to me.

The world seems real to me.

> >> Therefore, taking the same approach as with Agrippa's Trilemma, it
> >> seems best to just accept that there is no cause for conscious
> >> experience either.
> > Again, the trillema only means there is no non-arbitrary ultimate
> > cause.
> Well, the Agrippa’s trilemma applies to justification, not “cause” per
> se.  I just said we should apply the same approach and do away with
> the “causal trilemma” by denying its assumptions.

> Though your right in that the causal trilemma does look pretty similar
> to Agrippa’s trilemma.  

They are structurally identical

>Our three choices are:
> 1) An uncaused first cause.
> 2) Some sort of circular causation.
> 3) An infinite number of prior causes.
> Kant was pretty close to this with his first antinomy of pure reason.
> > The trillema does not mean that nothing whatsoever is caused.
> > In any case it is a rather poor reason for dismissing the causal
> > efficacy of consciousness.
> The causal trilemma just shows that attempting to explain our
> experiences by invoking a cause merely results in the question “what
> causes the cause”.

And *that* only means you don't have absolute non-arbitray
causes, not that you don't have causes at all

> You don’t get anywhere.
> You could just be satisfied with the predictive success of your
> “useful” explanation and not inquire further...but people don’t seem
> to like to stop there.  They go on to ascribe metaphysical/ontological
> significance to it.

Whatever. Having to settle for relative causes/explanations
may be unsatisfactory, but it doesn't mean "there are no causes"

> But if you do, then you have to face the causal trilemma.
> > You are saing that you are not causally
> > responsible for what you have written here, for instance
> I am saying that, correct.

You don't seem to realise you
have been reductio'd

> >> Is it a useful answer?  Maybe not.  But where does it say that all
> >> answers have to be useful?
> > If true knowledge is unobtainable, it makes a lot
> > of sense to settle for useful knowledge.
> Sure, if you believe that your beliefs are useful, that’s fine with
> me.  Just don’t go pretending that they’re justified.

Or just don'#t go arbitrarily assuming justfication has to be
absolute. Put something on an infinitely tall pedestal and you
can't reach it. Surprise, surprise

> >> Besides, what causes you to care about usefulness?  Evolution.
> >> What causes evolution?  Initial conditions and causal laws.
> >> What causes initial conditions and causal laws?
> >> And so on.  We've been through this before I think.
> > Yep. That it is in a sense caused by evolution does not make it wrong.
> Doesn’t make it right either.

Irrealism is not anti realism

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