A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

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The Voice of Time
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A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

Post by The Voice of Time »

Throughout history there have been countless many ways to define truth. The latest and likely most extensively agreed upon is that truth is a correlation between the objective world (also called "reality") and our own. I want to slap this definition.

First of all, the definition overlaps with the word "correct", which means correlation between an ideal of an object and the experience of the same object. What many people forget is that "reality" is also an ideal, because how else could we conceive of it? How can we conceive of reality as independent of the mind if we could not first make it an idea of the mind? So reality is an idea, practically speaking and my objection is to say that "truth" is reflected in correctness when this is only a recent development historically speaking. Instead, correctness should be correctness, and truth should be truth.

So I came up with an idea myself about what truth is, one that tries to encompass all possible meanings of it, and that is that truth is a product of management of the mind. That is, any process of managing of our ideas leading up to a specific state of the mind with specific ideas and those beliefs that accompany those ideas. I also believe that's what it really, at the very abstract level, always has meant, and that every single definition has always been an instantiation of this abstract concept, an instance, so to speak, of a general concept. I'll also explain, that the reason why we find the current circulating definition so attractive (that truth = correlation between reality and contents of mind), is because of the battle we've had to make people seek answers in the sensuous world instead of ideology and religion, a battle which is still fought and finding recurrence every now and then. This however, is only an instance, and to understand how it is only an instance, can also help us understand when truth isn't true, that is, when we think perhaps that we are quite correct, but when our interpretations are hopelessly worthless (like when you interpret an illusion as literal and real, or if you focus wrongly so you don't get the really interesting about any situation), by allowing for multiple instances, we can compare them and figure out which one excels the best at its task, which in my world would be need satisfaction, but for other people might vary between other similar parameters.

Anybody finds this reasonable? Anything objectionable?
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

Post by lancek4 »

I think it would behoove you to read Bourdieu "the logic of practice", specifically the first two chapters, on objectivism and subjectivism.

On anther note: your premises contradict your proposal. in what way or manner is the mind not an object? Or rather, it seems your definition or proposal of truth finds itself a product of an object that is called 'mind', or what may be worse, that truth somehow is a product of a mind that is not an object. But where is mind? Is it not also an idea arrived at in the same way as 'reality' or 'truth'? It seems your argument necessarily leads to a terminal object that must be the base of these functions. What is it then? The brain? But even this idea falls into you 'emergence' scheme. Are we thus left in a suspension of unknowing?

Please elaborate.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

Post by SpheresOfBalance »

The Voice of Time wrote:Throughout history there have been countless many ways to define truth. The latest and likely most extensively agreed upon is that truth is a correlation between the objective world (also called "reality") and our own. I want to slap this definition.

First of all, the definition overlaps with the word "correct", which means correlation between an ideal of an object and the experience of the same object. What many people forget is that "reality" is also an ideal, because how else could we conceive of it? How can we conceive of reality as independent of the mind if we could not first make it an idea of the mind? So reality is an idea, practically speaking and my objection is to say that "truth" is reflected in correctness when this is only a recent development historically speaking. Instead, correctness should be correctness, and truth should be truth.

So I came up with an idea myself about what truth is, one that tries to encompass all possible meanings of it, and that is that truth is a product of management of the mind. That is, any process of managing of our ideas leading up to a specific state of the mind with specific ideas and those beliefs that accompany those ideas. I also believe that's what it really, at the very abstract level, always has meant, and that every single definition has always been an instantiation of this abstract concept, an instance, so to speak, of a general concept. I'll also explain, that the reason why we find the current circulating definition so attractive (that truth = correlation between reality and contents of mind), is because of the battle we've had to make people seek answers in the sensuous world instead of ideology and religion, a battle which is still fought and finding recurrence every now and then. This however, is only an instance, and to understand how it is only an instance, can also help us understand when truth isn't true, that is, when we think perhaps that we are quite correct, but when our interpretations are hopelessly worthless (like when you interpret an illusion as literal and real, or if you focus wrongly so you don't get the really interesting about any situation), by allowing for multiple instances, we can compare them and figure out which one excels the best at its task, which in my world would be need satisfaction, but for other people might vary between other similar parameters.

Anybody finds this reasonable? Anything objectionable?
At least I see that the term "reality" in not a concept, a construct of mans design. Rather it is the acknowledgement of the absence of mans interpretations, much like truth, and that neither require mans existence. That then, nothing would be, to label it, matters not. It is that, which is contrast, for anything born of mans mind. Reality and truth, are words to acknowledge all, that came before man ever did, that seeks to put man in his place, to keep him honest. We did not create them, they are not our constructs, we merely acknowledged them, saw that they exist, in our failings, during our journey of growth, in understanding ourselves.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

Post by The Voice of Time »

lancek4 wrote:On another note: your premises contradict your proposal. in what way or manner is the mind not an object?
I never said the mind wasn't one. But I don't know what it even means for a mind to be an object... can you explain what it means that the mind is an object? Are you talking physical objects?
lancek4 wrote:Or rather, it seems your definition or proposal of truth finds itself a product of an object that is called 'mind', or what may be worse, that truth somehow is a product of a mind that is not an object. But where is mind?
It seems to stem from the brain and extend into the human body through the nervous system among things, because those things seems to be where you can affect it. That being said, it's not particularly meaningful to talk about the whereabouts of the mind, in the same way we don't really care where the bytes in the computer lay at any point of time as it's rather their functionality that is important about them.
lancek4 wrote:Is it not also an idea arrived at in the same way as 'reality' or 'truth'? It seems your argument necessarily leads to a terminal object that must be the base of these functions. What is it then?
Well yeah, it's nearly a theological question that one, because it's a bit like "if God created the universe then who created God?". But the answer is a lot more sophisticated, and it is that at some point of time in our development we start to conceive of ourselves as carriers of ideas, and what is the mind? Basically it's a container of ideas with other faculties of functionality working itself on those ideas. Those faculties, depending on who you ask will be part of the mind or not. If you ask me they are not part of the mind as to me the mind is just the container, and the functionality instead is a describing of the origin of the dynamics of the mind that causes our outer-worldly actions and our consciousness to be the way it is. It's all rather interdependent, but information is not concerned with how itself is produced, so is the mind not concerned with how itself is produced, only about its content.
lancek4 wrote:The brain? But even this idea falls into you 'emergence' scheme. Are we thus left in a suspension of unknowing?
What is an "emergence scheme"? What is a "suspension of unknowing"?
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

Post by tillingborn »

Wittgenstein gave philosophy an almighty kick up the backside when he opened the Tractatus Logio Philosophicus with the assertion that the world is a collection of facts rather than things; such and such is the case or it isn’t. You can manipulate ‘facts’ using logic, just as you can manipulate numbers and concepts in mathematics. What you never can tell is whether those facts or numbers equate to anything outside the context, which is what most people assume truth to be. If you do your logic well, you are bound to accept the conclusion, just as you are bound to accept 2+2=4. In the context or paradigm, a proposition may be true; what we don’t know is the truth of any propositions that we use to build our world picture, for example: there is a world out there, god exists, the laws of physics are true everywhere and for all time; whatever you happen to believe, it is for essentially aesthetic rather than rational reasons.
The only thing we can pin on reality, without any risk of it falling off, is what Parmenides said over two and a half thousand years ago, being is. In other words, something is going on, there is definitely not nothing. Parmenides himself made a right hash of that fact, taking it to mean that anything that ‘is’ must be solid, since it cannot contain any nothing, the fallacy being ‘something, therefore no nothing anywhere’ doesn’t follow. Descartes kick started modern philosophy by taking the epistemological route; he believed that because he was having sensations, he could prove his own existence. The trouble is, he can’t prove that it is him having the sensations. Bertrand Russell pointed out that it is logically possible that the world popped into existence 5 minutes ago, with all beliefs about Descartes and philosophy in place. It may be that all that has ever existed, or ever will, is the stream of consciousness you think is you and that it will disappear in a puff of logic any second now. I wouldn’t worry; it’s unlikely to hurt.
You can know all sorts of logical and mathematical truths and any number of contingent facts, but when people are seeking ‘truth’, there is only one context independent truth, there is something. Beyond that I think you are groping towards a viable definition of truth, Voice of Time; the truth is though, philosophy hardly needs another one.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

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SpheresOfBalance wrote:At least I see that the term "reality" is not a concept, a construct of mans design. Rather it is the acknowledgement of the absence of mans interpretations
And you can acknowledge something without conceiving of it? That seems rather paradoxical. Without a conception you'll never be able to think about it to begin with. I was never saying anything about a design, by the way, I just said reality is an idea. Because it's an idea doesn't mean it can't be other things as well. A chair is an idea, but still I'm sitting on one, there's no contradiction in that.
SpheresOfBalance wrote:much like truth, and that neither require mans existence.
Truth requires somebody to conceive of it. Reality as well. Whether this is a human being, an animal or a machine or a rock, doesn't matter. But somebody has, unless it's not truth and not reality, but just a bunch of what we used as resources to conceive of these things ourselves in this universe. It's a bit like asking that if we don't know about computers, how can they exist meaningfully to us even if they have the same physical composition? Truth and reality falls under the same problem, unless we can conceive of their meaning they don't have a meaningful existence and there's literally nothing to discuss about them really.
SpheresOfBalance wrote:That then, nothing would be, to label it, matters not. It is that, which is contrast, for anything born of mans mind. Reality and truth, are words to acknowledge all, that came before man ever did, that seeks to put man in his place, to keep him honest. We did not create them, they are not our constructs, we merely acknowledged them, saw that they exist, in our failings, during our journey of growth, in understanding ourselves.
[/quote]

Nothing of this makes sense. You cannot acknowledge something for which you haven't conceived of, and something not conceived of how you can use that as a reason for honesty? This is all religion to me, nothing but blunt dogma. Sounds like a verse from the bible.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

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tillingborn wrote:Beyond that I think you are groping towards a viable definition of truth, Voice of Time; the truth is though, philosophy hardly needs another one.
It needs this one xD To champion all the older ones.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

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The Voice of Time wrote:It needs this one xD To champion all the older ones.
Sorry, mate; I don't understand. What's xD? (A smiley?) To champion really means to stand up for, I think you might mean to stomp on, or somesuch. Fine by me.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

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language is a circular game

the tangible never becomes the description, nor the reverse...

-Imp
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

Post by SpheresOfBalance »

The Voice of Time wrote:
SpheresOfBalance wrote:At least I see that the term "reality" is not a concept, a construct of mans design. Rather it is the acknowledgement of the absence of mans interpretations
And you can acknowledge something without conceiving of it? That seems rather paradoxical. Without a conception you'll never be able to think about it to begin with. I was never saying anything about a design, by the way, I just said reality is an idea. Because it's an idea doesn't mean it can't be other things as well. A chair is an idea, but still I'm sitting on one, there's no contradiction in that.
SpheresOfBalance wrote:much like truth, and that neither require mans existence.
Truth requires somebody to conceive of it. Reality as well. Whether this is a human being, an animal or a machine or a rock, doesn't matter. But somebody has, unless it's not truth and not reality, but just a bunch of what we used as resources to conceive of these things ourselves in this universe. It's a bit like asking that if we don't know about computers, how can they exist meaningfully to us even if they have the same physical composition? Truth and reality falls under the same problem, unless we can conceive of their meaning they don't have a meaningful existence and there's literally nothing to discuss about them really.
SpheresOfBalance wrote:That then, nothing would be, to label it, matters not. It is that, which is contrast, for anything born of mans mind. Reality and truth, are words to acknowledge all, that came before man ever did, that seeks to put man in his place, to keep him honest. We did not create them, they are not our constructs, we merely acknowledged them, saw that they exist, in our failings, during our journey of growth, in understanding ourselves.
Nothing of this makes sense. You cannot acknowledge something for which you haven't conceived of, and something not conceived of how you can use that as a reason for honesty? This is all religion to me, nothing but blunt dogma. Sounds like a verse from the bible.
As to reality and truth

con·ceive [kuhn-seev] verb, con·ceived, con·ceiv·ing.
verb (used with object)
1. to form (a notion, opinion, purpose, etc.): He conceived the project while he was on vacation.
One cannot not necessarily form it into a notion, opinion or purpose, it just is.

2. to form a notion or idea of; imagine.
One cannot necessarily form an idea of it.

3. to hold as an opinion; think; believe: I can't conceive that it would be of any use.
It does not depend on ones opinion, belief or thinking.

4.to experience or form (a feeling): to conceive a great love for music.
One can try to experience or form a feeling of what it is, but not necessarily succeed.

5. to express, as in words.
It is not necessary that one can, though they may.

6. to become pregnant with.
Does not apply.

7. to beget.
It is not created, though it may be acknowledged.

8. to begin, originate, or found (something) in a particular way (usually used in the passive): a new nation conceived in liberty.
Man came after it, and only ever tries to acknowledge it.

9.Archaic. to understand; comprehend.
He tries to do this, he may succeed.

It is not a concept or a construct! It is an acknowledgement, still in the works. Our knowledge of it, unfolds with time.

Proof that it existed, not only before we coined the term conceive, but before we ever existed, fossils!!!!!!!!!!!!

They speak of the truth of reality before man ever set foot on the earth, him and his concepts, constructs, and such other word game crap. The thing that makes me laugh the most, is watching some would be philosopher get tangled up in mans much too large web of conflicting words. They don't know if they're coming or going as they, through words, try and fit a square peg in a round hole, and call it philosophy. Complicated, does not necessarily equate to brilliance, or correctness. Sometimes it's just splitting hairs that require no splitting.

I am here, what ever that means, that is the reality, the truth, it doesn't matter if I can define what it is.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

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tillingborn wrote:
The Voice of Time wrote:It needs this one xD To champion all the older ones.
Sorry, mate; I don't understand. What's xD? (A smiley?) To champion really means to stand up for, I think you might mean to stomp on, or somesuch. Fine by me.
No I meant champion, because it kinda "stomps on" them by "standing up for" them. It says "hey all you little ones I am the boss here and we do this together!", so it takes charge and stands up for while at the same time dominating them. 4

"xD" is a closed-eye huge smile.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

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SpheresOfBalance, I did not understand anything of that. You make claim after claim but they are not arguments, they are as much arguments as hitting somebody in the head with a hammer! Arguments makes explanation, you on the other hand make demands (of not disputing your claim).

And you are not tackling issues I've ever brought up, I didn't dispute the existence of anything, but everything must exist for something else, or else it doesn't make sense to talk about. Fossils exist for us, and therefore they make sense to us. Reality and truth exist for us, if it didn't exist for us it wouldn't have a place in our world that we could think about or talk about.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

Post by SpheresOfBalance »

The Voice of Time wrote:SpheresOfBalance, I did not understand anything of that.
Really? I don't use extremely large words, purposely.

You make claim after claim but they are not arguments,
I see that if they are different than yours, then they are arguments.

they are as much arguments as hitting somebody in the head with a hammer!
And then you should hit me over the head with a metaphorical hammer.

Arguments makes explanation, you on the other hand make demands (of not disputing your claim).
I don't see that, that is true, but apparently you do. You can dispute, if you so choose, actually I expect you to do so. Or how else does anyone learn? Unless you are saying that my arguments are so strong that you feel incapable of disputing them????

And you are not tackling issues I've ever brought up,
I am talking about truth and reality, in my way, it would seem that you don't want me to participate unless I see it your way. Is that what you're trying to tell me with this line?

I didn't dispute the existence of anything, but everything must exist for something else,
I don't see that it must. I only see that it exists.

or else it doesn't make sense to talk about.
I see that it may be difficult to talk about some things, that are as yet, not fully understood, but I don't see that it doesn't make sense.

Fossils exist for us,
I don't see that they exist for us, just that they exist.

and therefore they make sense to us.
I only see that we can try and understand what they mean, and try and extrapolate how it affects us, that we can possibly learn about ourselves and our world.

Reality and truth exist for us,
I do not see that this is true. I see it as arrogant to place oneself at the center, it was the same with religion as to the earth, pre-Copernicus. I, at least, have learned from it.

if it didn't exist for us it wouldn't have a place in our world that we could think about or talk about.
It sounds to me, that you believe in a god, a higher power, that gives his ultimate creation, man (you), things, exclusively.

I'm an agnostic, and have views of both possibilities. The one that sees the possibility of a creator, believes it's much more, passive. It created the cosmos to work as it does, yielding life as it has, and that's pretty much it. Nothing is necessarily 'for' us, as that would imply that we were the ends, and there's no way that is true, what with the way we screw things up.
Look, I know we are different, we come from two different places, different ages, different experiences, and different languages, and that even though we are both speaking English, they are not exactly the same versions.

So is it your contention that I should go away, as I'm a bother, and never come back? I don't know what you expect out of me.
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

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Answers in red
SpheresOfBalance wrote:
The Voice of Time wrote:SpheresOfBalance, I did not understand anything of that.
Really? I don't use extremely large words, purposely.

No, but your sentences stretch their distance away from my original subject more and more every time until I don't understand what you are talking about at all. It's like suddenly you should pop out an idea about cheese while we were discussing trains. There's no connection there, now you have a connection but it's getting really thin and that makes understand less and less what you are getting at.

You make claim after claim but they are not arguments,
I see that if they are different than yours, then they are arguments.

No, an argument must contain somehow an explanation, it consists of sentences building up under a way of thinking. To say "this is it" is very different from "this is how it is". If I say "Apples are red" and you say "Apples are green", neither of us are presenting arguments, if you believe that you have something fundamental to learn about philosophy. If you said "Apples are green... because <some explanation>" you are making an argument supporting your claim, if you just make the claim, that's all there is to it.

they are as much arguments as hitting somebody in the head with a hammer!
And then you should hit me over the head with a metaphorical hammer.

/facepalm

Arguments makes explanation, you on the other hand make demands (of not disputing your claim).
I don't see that, that is true, but apparently you do. You can dispute, if you so choose, actually I expect you to do so. Or how else does anyone learn? Unless you are saying that my arguments are so strong that you feel incapable of disputing them????

You are making demands because when I present you with something you make a different claim of which you provide no way of going around except agreeing with you. You have no explanation so there is no way I can dispute you except make a different claim, which gets us nowhere. You made your claim impenetrable by not providing for the opportunity of argumentation, or should I say refuse to offer your own argumentation (or forget? to provide it, whatever, you get the point).

And you are not tackling issues I've ever brought up,
I am talking about truth and reality, in my way, it would seem that you don't want me to participate unless I see it your way. Is that what you're trying to tell me with this line?

I want arguments and not just claims, that's what I want.

I didn't dispute the existence of anything, but everything must exist for something else,
I don't see that it must. I only see that it exists.

I'm starting to sense we're not talking with the same background knowledge. To be for something is not a matter of destination, but a matter of things existing in relation to its observer. It's a concept from phenomenology, that things exist for other things means they exist in a presented form, like a flower presents before us itself with colours, and that if we could just smell it, it would still exist, but it would not exist in the same way for us as for the person who could also see it.

or else it doesn't make sense to talk about.
I see that it may be difficult to talk about some things, that are as yet, not fully understood, but I don't see that it doesn't make sense.

If it's just a little bit understood, there exists a concept for it. Call it a proto-concept, but it's still a concept.

Fossils exist for us,
I don't see that they exist for us, just that they exist.

If not for us we couldn't see them.

and therefore they make sense to us.
I only see that we can try and understand what they mean, and try and extrapolate how it affects us, that we can possibly learn about ourselves and our world.

confusing, not actually talking about anything I said. I have no answer to that, except perhaps it seems somewhat narrow that it's the only thing you see

Reality and truth exist for us,
I do not see that this is true. I see it as arrogant to place oneself at the center, it was the same with religion as to the earth, pre-Copernicus. I, at least, have learned from it.

But you are at the centre of your own existence from the time you were born! Could you ever discard your own body and mind from the centrality it has to the world about you? And if you could, how could you move your arms when you did not first go to the roots of its ability to be used? That central knowledge about how to move it back and forth and up and down?

Again you make a claim but no argument, only that as you say it is arrogance and compare it with a historical event. But to talk about arrogance is a bit moralistic, and I fail to see how it supports a question of the whatabouts of reality and truth unless it was anybody's primary goal to foremost adhere to some morality.


if it didn't exist for us it wouldn't have a place in our world that we could think about or talk about.
It sounds to me, that you believe in a god, a higher power, that gives his ultimate creation, man (you), things, exclusively.

I fail to see how you get that idea.

I'm an agnostic, and have views of both possibilities. The one that sees the possibility of a creator, believes it's much more, passive. It created the cosmos to work as it does, yielding life as it has, and that's pretty much it. Nothing is necessarily 'for' us, as that would imply that we were the ends, and there's no way that is true, what with the way we screw things up.
Look, I know we are different, we come from two different places, different ages, different experiences, and different languages, and that even though we are both speaking English, they are not exactly the same versions.

So is it your contention that I should go away, as I'm a bother, and never come back? I don't know what you expect out of me.
Certainly we are having a problem of communication here, like you very clearly did not get my reference to phenomenology. Only thing I expect out of you is what I said above. Give me arguments to chew on so I can throw some ball with you. Without arguments it's gonna be an invisible ball I'm throwing, and it's hard to catch invisible things!
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Re: A slapping of today's traditional thoughts on truth

Post by lancek4 »

SoB has a version of reality and truth similar to Plato and his ideal forms. It is difficult to breach his idea. I have found it doesn't hold water in an extended analysis. It goes something like this: knowledge is privy to a true 'object in-itself' reality/universe, but we cannot know if at any time knowledge is reflecting that truth; but there are some knowledge that indeed does, like example: water freezes. It's a kind of 'correct' that he seems to advocate. It seems like sob may not have investigated Kant, or many other thinkers.

I have had interesting exchanges with you SoB. But you appear to be set in what I call a 'faith'. I think we've had that discussion too. ;).
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