Is morality objective or subjective?

Should you think about your duty, or about the consequences of your actions? Or should you concentrate on becoming a good person?

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Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Terrapin Station wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 2:19 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 8:22 pm
Terrapin Station wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 6:58 pm

if you wind up arguing that words, symbols, etc. do not have meanings, that there is no knowledge, etc., then you should realize you've royally f---ed up somewhere.
I'm obviously not saying that at all. Think about it. What evidence is there for the existence of an abstract thing that is a meaning? For example, what and where is a meaning? Saying it's a mental phenomenon explains precisely nothing.
if there are meanings, if there is knowledge, etc. then those things exist, right? That's the way that "there is x" works. Whatever is x there, if there is some of it, it exists.

You're not arguing that "there is meaning but it doesn't exist" are you, because that would suggest that you don't even understand how to use language, and we'd have to wonder what the hell you could possibly be saying.
I thought I'd posted a reply to this, but I can't find it. So sorry if this is repetition.

As a physicalist, I believe that only physical things exist, and that to say non-physical things exist is to equivocate.

If you think things such as truth, knowledge, meaning, intention, identity, justice, and so on - the supposed things that philosophers talk about - are physical things, what empirical evidence do you have for their existence?

And if you think such supposed things are 'mental entities', but that mental entities are physical things, I ask the same question. (Obviously, brains and electrochemical processes are physical things for which we have empirical evidence.)

In other words, for a physicalist, the idea of a mental entity or phenomenon has absolutely no explanatory value. Occam's razor applied.

(Would saying 'X is a physical phenomenon' have any discriminatory value?)
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Terrapin Station
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Terrapin Station »

Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 3:27 pm
Terrapin Station wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 2:19 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 8:22 pm
I'm obviously not saying that at all. Think about it. What evidence is there for the existence of an abstract thing that is a meaning? For example, what and where is a meaning? Saying it's a mental phenomenon explains precisely nothing.
if there are meanings, if there is knowledge, etc. then those things exist, right? That's the way that "there is x" works. Whatever is x there, if there is some of it, it exists.

You're not arguing that "there is meaning but it doesn't exist" are you, because that would suggest that you don't even understand how to use language, and we'd have to wonder what the hell you could possibly be saying.
I thought I'd posted a reply to this, but I can't find it. So sorry if this is repetition.

As a physicalist, I believe that only physical things exist, and that to say non-physical things exist is to equivocate.

If you think things such as truth, knowledge, meaning, intention, identity, justice, and so on - the supposed things that philosophers talk about - are physical things, what empirical evidence do you have for their existence?

And if you think such supposed things are 'mental entities', but that mental entities are physical things, I ask the same question. (Obviously, brains and electrochemical processes are physical things for which we have empirical evidence.)

In other words, for a physicalist, the idea of a mental entity or phenomenon has absolutely no explanatory value. Occam's razor applied.

(Would saying 'X is a physical phenomenon' have any discriminatory value?)
Nope. C'mon man.

You said that you think there are meanings, there is knowledge, etc., right?

Are you saying that there are meanings, there is knowledge, etc., but those things do not exist?
popeye1945
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by popeye1945 »

FlashDangerpants wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 1:15 pm
popeye1945 wrote: Thu Jan 20, 2022 11:08 am There are no acceptions to the fact that all meaning belongs to a conscious subject, thus subjectivity. In the relation between subject and object, meaning always belongs to the subject never the object. One could play games with semantics all day long it would not change this reality.
It's not a very important reality in this context though. The argument that all meanings are subjective and therefore moral meanings, scientific meanings, and art history meanings are all subjective simply obscures valid distinctions at an entirely cosmetic level.

The question of whether a sandwich is better if it is cut into triangles rather than rectablges is subjective in more contexts than the question of whether the Earth transits the Sun or vice versa. An argument that progresses from the fact all meaning is subjective if you caegorize it that way to a mere insinuation that this makes all things subjective in all the same ways won't change that reality.

We have the methods and concpets of objectivity because they serve a useful purpose in our rational enquiries. Perfect metaphysical objectivity isn't a requirement.

If there is a question that is best resolved by looking out at the world, and if doing so will resolve the debate such that one claim is clearly supported by eveidence that all can aquire by that action, then this is a standard of objectivity that we apply to such questions. If a question is of a sort that we can only introspect for further guidance, then a similar standard of objectivity is simply not available.
All these contingencies are still the property of the subject, you are inferring that the physical relations of the outside world change the essence of meaning, this is not so. All inflections of meaning still belong to the subject, never the object.
FlashDangerpants
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by FlashDangerpants »

popeye1945 wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 1:02 am
FlashDangerpants wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 1:15 pm
popeye1945 wrote: Thu Jan 20, 2022 11:08 am There are no acceptions to the fact that all meaning belongs to a conscious subject, thus subjectivity. In the relation between subject and object, meaning always belongs to the subject never the object. One could play games with semantics all day long it would not change this reality.
It's not a very important reality in this context though. The argument that all meanings are subjective and therefore moral meanings, scientific meanings, and art history meanings are all subjective simply obscures valid distinctions at an entirely cosmetic level.

The question of whether a sandwich is better if it is cut into triangles rather than rectablges is subjective in more contexts than the question of whether the Earth transits the Sun or vice versa. An argument that progresses from the fact all meaning is subjective if you caegorize it that way to a mere insinuation that this makes all things subjective in all the same ways won't change that reality.

We have the methods and concpets of objectivity because they serve a useful purpose in our rational enquiries. Perfect metaphysical objectivity isn't a requirement.

If there is a question that is best resolved by looking out at the world, and if doing so will resolve the debate such that one claim is clearly supported by eveidence that all can aquire by that action, then this is a standard of objectivity that we apply to such questions. If a question is of a sort that we can only introspect for further guidance, then a similar standard of objectivity is simply not available.
All these contingencies are still the property of the subject, you are inferring that the physical relations of the outside world change the essence of meaning, this is not so. All inflections of meaning still belong to the subject, never the object.
In which case there is no point in referencing the topic of universal subjectivity, nobody needs to care about it.

The fact remains that there is a subjectivity inherent to some sorts of question such as "which is nicer X or Y" and that form of subjectivity is not present in questions for which we can all look at the sky, or under a stone to find an asnwer.

So your claim that it's subjective just because everything is subjective fails to account for the ways in which morality might be subjective in which not everything is subjective. Which it is.
Age
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Age »

Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm
Age wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 10:29 am To find what is morally right, or wrong, then all one has to do is just work out what you would want done to you, if you were 'in their shoes', as they say.

And, to find out the difference between what is morally objective from what is just morally subjective is done by just working out what the difference could be.

If 'morality' is just what is classed as being what is Right and what is Wrong human behavior in Life, then to uncover, and thus discover, if 'morality', itself, is objective or subjective is a Truly simple and easy process.

If ANY one would like to discuss to FIND OUT and SEE what thee ACTUAL Truth is here, then let us BEGIN.
1 What I want done to me is morally right; and what I don't want done to me is morally wrong.
Until you list those 'things', then this is just nonsense.
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm 2 Morality can be objective - there are moral facts, regardless of what anyone thinks or wants done to them.
Is there?

If yes, then what are they, exactly?

And, what are you basing this claim on exactly?
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm Spot the contradiction?
The contradiction that you have created here is OBVIOUS. I wrote what I did specifically. See, I have left out how it is possible to DISCOVER what thee ACTUAL and IRREFUTABLE Truth IS. Like I have done in a lot of my replies. I seek those who are Truly curious and NOT those who want to TELL us what they BELIEVE is true.

If you are not curious at all, then just proceed as you are. We already know that you BELIEVE WHOLEHEARTEDLY that morality can only be subjective, so you are obviously NOT open to discovering ANY thing new here. We also KNOW that you are only FIXATED on presenting your OWN CLOSED VIEWS as though they are the only one that is right and correct here.

You are prepared to argue and fight for your own tightly held FIXED position only correct?

Would you be prepared to consider and ask how this OBVIOUSLY APPARENT "contradiction" could be explained away? Or, are you just that NOT OPEN yet?

Are you just going to REMAIN SO COMPLETELY CLOSED and so just going to continue to LOOK AT at 'things' here from your OWN made up FIXED view and position, or are you able to SHOW and PROVE that you are somewhat OPEN and so able to discover and learn more and anew?

Remember NOT ALL of what SEEMS to be a "contradiction" is necessarily a 'contradiction' at all. The same applies with ALL views, beliefs, perceptions, et cetera.
Age
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Age »

Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 3:27 pm
Terrapin Station wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 2:19 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 8:22 pm
I'm obviously not saying that at all. Think about it. What evidence is there for the existence of an abstract thing that is a meaning? For example, what and where is a meaning? Saying it's a mental phenomenon explains precisely nothing.
if there are meanings, if there is knowledge, etc. then those things exist, right? That's the way that "there is x" works. Whatever is x there, if there is some of it, it exists.

You're not arguing that "there is meaning but it doesn't exist" are you, because that would suggest that you don't even understand how to use language, and we'd have to wonder what the hell you could possibly be saying.
I thought I'd posted a reply to this, but I can't find it. So sorry if this is repetition.

As a physicalist, I believe that only physical things exist, and that to say non-physical things exist is to equivocate.
What do you call 'that', which exists between physical things? And, what is 'that' made up of, EXACTLY?
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 3:27 pm If you think things such as truth, knowledge, meaning, intention, identity, justice, and so on - the supposed things that philosophers talk about - are physical things, what empirical evidence do you have for their existence?
Why would ANY one even think that those things are physical things?
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 3:27 pm And if you think such supposed things are 'mental entities', but that mental entities are physical things, I ask the same question. (Obviously, brains and electrochemical processes are physical things for which we have empirical evidence.)

In other words, for a physicalist, the idea of a mental entity or phenomenon has absolutely no explanatory value. Occam's razor applied.

(Would saying 'X is a physical phenomenon' have any discriminatory value?)
Being a so-called "physicalist", (which by the way is an IMPOSSIBILITY itself), only DISTORTS one in being able to see CLEARLY and ACCURATELY. As just PROVED True here.
Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Age wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 3:24 am
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm
Age wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 10:29 am To find what is morally right, or wrong, then all one has to do is just work out what you would want done to you, if you were 'in their shoes', as they say.

And, to find out the difference between what is morally objective from what is just morally subjective is done by just working out what the difference could be.

If 'morality' is just what is classed as being what is Right and what is Wrong human behavior in Life, then to uncover, and thus discover, if 'morality', itself, is objective or subjective is a Truly simple and easy process.

If ANY one would like to discuss to FIND OUT and SEE what thee ACTUAL Truth is here, then let us BEGIN.
1 What I want done to me is morally right; and what I don't want done to me is morally wrong.
Until you list those 'things', then this is just nonsense.
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm 2 Morality can be objective - there are moral facts, regardless of what anyone thinks or wants done to them.
Is there?

If yes, then what are they, exactly?

And, what are you basing this claim on exactly?
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm Spot the contradiction?
The contradiction that you have created here is OBVIOUS. I wrote what I did specifically. See, I have left out how it is possible to DISCOVER what thee ACTUAL and IRREFUTABLE Truth IS. Like I have done in a lot of my replies. I seek those who are Truly curious and NOT those who want to TELL us what they BELIEVE is true.

If you are not curious at all, then just proceed as you are. We already know that you BELIEVE WHOLEHEARTEDLY that morality can only be subjective, so you are obviously NOT open to discovering ANY thing new here. We also KNOW that you are only FIXATED on presenting your OWN CLOSED VIEWS as though they are the only one that is right and correct here.

You are prepared to argue and fight for your own tightly held FIXED position only correct?

Would you be prepared to consider and ask how this OBVIOUSLY APPARENT "contradiction" could be explained away? Or, are you just that NOT OPEN yet?

Are you just going to REMAIN SO COMPLETELY CLOSED and so just going to continue to LOOK AT at 'things' here from your OWN made up FIXED view and position, or are you able to SHOW and PROVE that you are somewhat OPEN and so able to discover and learn more and anew?

Remember NOT ALL of what SEEMS to be a "contradiction" is necessarily a 'contradiction' at all. The same applies with ALL views, beliefs, perceptions, et cetera.
Please stop whingeing and coat-trailing. If you think it isn't a contradiction, show why it isn't. If you think there are moral facts, so that morality is objective, show an example of a moral fact. Otherwise, this is a waste of time and effort for all of us.
popeye1945
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by popeye1945 »

[quote=FlashDangerpants post_id=556325 time=1642767321 user_id=11800

All these contingencies are still the property of the subject, you are inferring that the physical relations of the outside world change the essence of meaning, this is not so. All inflections of meaning still belong to the subject, never the object.
[/quote]

In which case there is no point in referencing the topic of universal subjectivity, nobody needs to care about it.
The fact remains that there is a subjectivity inherent to some sorts of question such as "which is nicer X or Y" and that form of subjectivity is not present in questions for which we can all look at the sky, or under a stone to find an asnwer.
So your claim that it's subjective just because everything is subjective fails to account for the ways in which morality might be subjective in which not everything is subjective. Which it is.
[/quote]

I am afraid your babbling here, for not only meaning but thought itself is the property of the subject, not the object. As in a shell game the prize would be under all the shells, one cannot lose with subjectivity, without it there is no object, no prize, no objective world. The only way morality can be made objective is for the subject to create it in the outer world/object, in the form of the manifestation of systems and structures, the biological extensions of the values held in subjective consciousness.
Peter Holmes
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Terrapin Station wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 10:23 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 3:27 pm
Terrapin Station wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 2:19 pm

if there are meanings, if there is knowledge, etc. then those things exist, right? That's the way that "there is x" works. Whatever is x there, if there is some of it, it exists.

You're not arguing that "there is meaning but it doesn't exist" are you, because that would suggest that you don't even understand how to use language, and we'd have to wonder what the hell you could possibly be saying.
I thought I'd posted a reply to this, but I can't find it. So sorry if this is repetition.

As a physicalist, I believe that only physical things exist, and that to say non-physical things exist is to equivocate.

If you think things such as truth, knowledge, meaning, intention, identity, justice, and so on - the supposed things that philosophers talk about - are physical things, what empirical evidence do you have for their existence?

And if you think such supposed things are 'mental entities', but that mental entities are physical things, I ask the same question. (Obviously, brains and electrochemical processes are physical things for which we have empirical evidence.)

In other words, for a physicalist, the idea of a mental entity or phenomenon has absolutely no explanatory value. Occam's razor applied.

(Would saying 'X is a physical phenomenon' have any discriminatory value?)
Nope. C'mon man.

You said that you think there are meanings, there is knowledge, etc., right?

Are you saying that there are meanings, there is knowledge, etc., but those things do not exist?
Do you think mathematical objects, such as numbers, exist? Are you a Platonist?

Mathematical language exists, of course. But what and where is the number one?

Claim: 'we say that things such as sentences can have meanings; therefore meanings exist.'

Okay. Does the meaning of a sentence exist in the same way that a sentence exists? If not, what and where is the meaning of a sentence, and in what way does it exist? (Bewitchment by the devices of our language: a noun must be the name of a thing of some kind that exists somewhere, somehow.)

C'mon, man. Critical thinking.
Age
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Age »

Peter Holmes wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 10:43 am
Age wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 3:24 am
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm
1 What I want done to me is morally right; and what I don't want done to me is morally wrong.
Until you list those 'things', then this is just nonsense.
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm 2 Morality can be objective - there are moral facts, regardless of what anyone thinks or wants done to them.
Is there?

If yes, then what are they, exactly?

And, what are you basing this claim on exactly?
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Jan 22, 2022 1:11 pm Spot the contradiction?
The contradiction that you have created here is OBVIOUS. I wrote what I did specifically. See, I have left out how it is possible to DISCOVER what thee ACTUAL and IRREFUTABLE Truth IS. Like I have done in a lot of my replies. I seek those who are Truly curious and NOT those who want to TELL us what they BELIEVE is true.

If you are not curious at all, then just proceed as you are. We already know that you BELIEVE WHOLEHEARTEDLY that morality can only be subjective, so you are obviously NOT open to discovering ANY thing new here. We also KNOW that you are only FIXATED on presenting your OWN CLOSED VIEWS as though they are the only one that is right and correct here.

You are prepared to argue and fight for your own tightly held FIXED position only correct?

Would you be prepared to consider and ask how this OBVIOUSLY APPARENT "contradiction" could be explained away? Or, are you just that NOT OPEN yet?

Are you just going to REMAIN SO COMPLETELY CLOSED and so just going to continue to LOOK AT at 'things' here from your OWN made up FIXED view and position, or are you able to SHOW and PROVE that you are somewhat OPEN and so able to discover and learn more and anew?

Remember NOT ALL of what SEEMS to be a "contradiction" is necessarily a 'contradiction' at all. The same applies with ALL views, beliefs, perceptions, et cetera.
Please stop whingeing and coat-trailing. If you think it isn't a contradiction, show why it isn't.
But, to you, it can NOT be ANY thing other than a contradiction, correct?

If yes, then I, literally, can NOT SHOW 'you' WHY 'it' is NOT a contradiction.

Are you ABLE to UNDERSTAND this Fact?

I, however, can and will SHOW 'others' EXACTLY WHY 'it' is NOT a contradiction.

Also, I could have also said, 'Please stop whingeing and 'coat-trailing' (whatever that means)" and start listing what is EXACTLY morally wrong to you and what is morally right, to you, and then you can start to just answer the second CLARIFYING question as well.
Peter Holmes wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 10:39 am If you think there are moral facts, so that morality is objective, show an example of a moral fact.
BUT, I can NOT SHOW and example of a 'moral fact', to you, when, to you, this is an IMPOSSIBILITY, correct?
Peter Holmes wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 10:39 am Otherwise, this is a waste of time and effort for all of us.
So, WHY AGAIN, START these threads?

What is a True WASTE of time is trying to SHOW and PROVE some 'thing' to some one who BELIEVES otherwise. It is, literally, IMPOSSIBLE to do so. This is because the one with a BELIEF is NOT able to see NOR hear ANY thing other than what they BELIEVE is true. And, YOUR WORDS here are PROVING this IRREFUTABLY True.

Asking the question, "Is morality objective or subjective?", when to that one morality can ONLY EVER be subjective, is a PRIME example of 'trolling'. That is; putting out the 'bait' and then seeing who they can 'hook' and 'reel' in.

This would be just like asking; Does God exist?" when one BELIEVES that God could NEVER exist.

You are COMPLETELY and UTTERLY CLOSED here, so this REALLY is a True WASTE of time and effort for all of us here.

WHY did you START this thread, especially when, to you, there is ONLY ONE POSSIBLE answer?
Skepdick
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Skepdick »

popeye1945 wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 1:02 am All these contingencies are still the property of the subject, you are inferring that the physical relations of the outside world change the essence of meaning, this is not so. All inflections of meaning still belong to the subject, never the object.
The objective/subjective distinction is contingent upon special pleading.

Why are rocks objects, but humans "subjects"?
Why are properties of rocks objective; but properties of humans "subjective"?
Last edited by Skepdick on Mon Jan 24, 2022 11:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
Skepdick
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Skepdick »

Peter Holmes wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 10:12 am Do you think mathematical objects, such as numbers, exist? Are you a Platonist?

Mathematical language exists, of course. But what and where is the number one?
C'mon, man. Critical thinking.
And yet you are appealing to the abstract objects called "facts". Are YOU a Platonist?

Factual language exists, of course. But what and where are facts?

C'mon, man. Critical thinking.
Last edited by Skepdick on Mon Jan 24, 2022 11:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
Belinda
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Belinda »

Skepdick wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 11:07 am
popeye1945 wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 1:02 am All these contingencies are still the property of the subject, you are inferring that the physical relations of the outside world change the essence of meaning, this is not so. All inflections of meaning still belong to the subject, never the object.
Special pleading.

Why are rocks objects, but humans "subjects"?
Why are properties of rocks objective; but properties of humans "subjective"?
Rocks mean or intend nothing. My computer means or intends nothing. Rocks and all other inanimate things are defined only by their histories whereas humans are defined by their histories and their intentions.
Skepdick
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by Skepdick »

Belinda wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 11:14 am Rocks mean or intend nothing. My computer means or intends nothing. Rocks and all other inanimate things are defined only by their histories whereas humans are defined by their histories and their intentions.
Yes, but that's just more of that special pleading.

We ascribe intent to ourselves. We have to in order to justify our belief in our own free will.

Do I believe in free will because I intend to; or do I believe in free will because the cells in my brain made me say it?

A computer (once programmed) absolutely displays intention-like qualities. Telos.
popeye1945
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Re: Is morality objective or subjective?

Post by popeye1945 »

Skepdick wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 11:07 am
popeye1945 wrote: Sun Jan 23, 2022 1:02 am All these contingencies are still the property of the subject, you are inferring that the physical relations of the outside world change the essence of meaning, this is not so. All inflections of meaning still belong to the subject, never the object.
The objective/subjective distinction is contingent upon special pleading.

Why are rocks objects, but humans "subjects"?
Why are properties of rocks objective; but properties of humans "subjective"?
All-knowing is cognitive and the property of biological life, but, you are right in a sense, for there is no real separation of subject and object, there cannot be, for if one takes away one, the other ceases to be, cognitively. So, in this event, there is no objective or subjective, there is nothing, a nothing that cannot be known. Another observation, your own body is in the world and you know it as an object in the world, and it is through this object that the world is known to you at all. Rocks are objects because they are subjected to the cognitive perception of biological consciousness and thus are known to you as the subject. As far as we know, this process is unique to the processes of life, meaning knowledge is unique to life itself, meaning the physical world is meaningless in the absence of biological consciousness. The world in a sense knows itself through biological consciousness and in this way, the world itself is an object of our knowing/knowledge. We, life, are obsevers of the world as object, as far as we know there is nothing similar happening from the direction of object/s. Life is the knowing element the world/object is subjected to, without which the world is meaningless.
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