What could make morality objective?

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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henry quirk
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"I always try to keep my mind open to a third option but never hear of one."

Post by henry quirk »

In context: there ain't and (probably) can't be a 3rd path.

We live in an amoral universe (with all the attendant seein' clearly and sussin'), or, we live in a moral universe (and must be mindful of the Architect/Arbiter).

So: pick one, live accordingly.
Logik
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Logik »

Assertions are not observer independent.

The term "orbit" means that an object moves around a point in space on a certain path. What is that point?

To assert that “The Earth orbits the Sun” the observer has necessarily adopted the Heliocentric model in which the Sun is axiomatically assumed to be the centre of the Solar system. The point around which everything orbits.

If we move the observer's reference frame outside the Solar system then "The Earth orbits the Sun" is false. Both the Earth and Sun orbit the Solar system's barycenter.

Certeris paribus, simply changing the observer’s reference frame (perspective?) has turned a true claim into a false claim.
This is evidence against a theory of "objective facts, independent of what anybody believes/knows".

All assertions are true only in relation to the observer’s reference frame therefore all assertions are contextual.
Without this assumption the science we call 'physics' is impossible.

Contextual facts, or contextual objectivity sure sounds like an oxymoron to me.
Last edited by Logik on Sat Dec 15, 2018 12:49 pm, edited 12 times in total.
Scientismist
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Scientismist »

Logik wrote: Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:41 pm
Scientismist wrote: Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:16 pm This objection makes no sense to me. What do you think the word 'falsifiable' means?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falsifiability
Essentially falsifiable means testable.

If we substitute 'testable' for 'falsifiable' in your original statement:
Logik wrote: Fri Dec 14, 2018 9:44 amIf a claim is testable in principle then it cannot possibly be a 'true irrespective of what anybody believes or claims to know'!

To believe both at the same time is incoherent nonsense.
It still makes no sense to me.
Logik
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Logik »

Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 9:23 am Essentially falsifiable means testable.
No, it doesn't. They are different criteria.

Testability is about confirmation of hypothesis/expectation/prediction.
Falsification is about disconfirmation of hypothesis/expectation/prediction.
Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 9:23 am If we substitute 'testable' for 'falsifiable' in your original statement
Logik wrote: Fri Dec 14, 2018 9:44 amIf a claim is testable in principle then it cannot possibly be a 'true irrespective of what anybody believes or claims to know'!

To believe both at the same time is incoherent nonsense.
This is a non-sequitur given your faulty premise.
Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 9:23 am It still makes no sense to me.
It is not supposed to make sense.

Epistemology is about counter-factual reasoning.
Counter-factual reasoning is counter-intuitive until you train your intuition to think that way.

A claim that is unfalsifiable is unscientific. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Not_even_wrong

The scientific method is applied epistemology. It is also highly subjective. People who tell you otherwise are 2nd grade scientists don't listen to them.
Scientismist
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Scientismist »

Logik wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 9:36 am Testability is about confirmation of hypothesis/expectation/prediction.
Falsification is about disconfirmation of hypothesis/expectation/prediction.
As I suspected, you're confusing falsifiability (testability) with falsification (disproof).
Logik
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Logik »

Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 10:20 am
Logik wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 9:36 am Testability is about confirmation of hypothesis/expectation/prediction.
Falsification is about disconfirmation of hypothesis/expectation/prediction.
As I suspected, you're confusing falsifiability (testability) with falsification (disproof).
Another linguistic prescriptivist :roll:

I am talking about the same concept when I speak of "falsifiability" and "falsification" (hint: the root of both words is "false"). If you are using "falsifiability" to mean "testability" you are bound to cause confusion.

Either way. The word doesn't matter, because when I speak of "falsifiability" and "falsification" I am speaking about the process/experiment by which a hypothesis can be disconfirmed. The process in which you predicted, and expected to observe A, but you observed B instead.

You are welcome to call it "disproof" if you don't like "falsifiability".

If there is no observation which can disprove the hypothesis "The Earth orbits around the Sun" then the hypothesis is pseudo-scientific garbage!

What I read into the statement "The Earth revolves around the Sun is a fact" is you are adopting a frame of reference/perspective from which that statement asserts to "true". In your mind's eye you have an image of the Sun remaining in a fixed position with everything else orbiting around it. What I read into such a statement is that you are dogmatic about Heliocentrism and you are happy to disregard astrophysics and the barycenter of the Solar system.

And so according to some linguistic practices when Peter claims "The Earth orbitsthe Sun is a fact" we could say that his religion is Heliocentrism and that he worships a Sun-god.

Wittgenstein's ruler. https://wisdomsummary.com/the-wittgensteins-ruler/
Scientismist
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Scientismist »

Logik wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 10:22 amI am talking about the same concept when I speak of "falsifiability" and "falsification"
I know you are.

The two terms have quite distinct meanings (particularly in philosophy).

You're going to cause confusion if you continue to conflate the terms on a philosophy forum.
Logik
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Logik »

Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 11:28 am
Logik wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 10:22 amI am talking about the same concept when I speak of "falsifiability" and "falsification"
I know you are.

The two terms have quite distinct meanings (particularly in philosophy).

You're going to cause confusion if you continue to conflate the terms on a philosophy forum.
And yet you were perfectly capable of recognising that I mean the same thing by "falsifiability" and "falsification", so I guess your warning of confusion is somewhat unnecessary?

In my view, to use "falsifiability" to mean "testability" is far more prone to causing confusion, so your suggested vocabulary correction has been noted and discarded.
Scientismist
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Scientismist »

Logik wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 11:39 am
Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 11:28 amYou're going to cause confusion if you continue to conflate the terms on a philosophy forum.
And yet you were perfectly capable of recognising that I mean the same thing by "falsifiability" and "falsification", so I guess your warning of confusion is somewhat unnecessary?
You seem to have forgotten that it was my confusion about your claim which motivated me to start this exchange.
In my view, to use "falsifiability" to mean "testability" is far more prone to causing confusion, so your suggested vocabulary correction has been noted and discarded.
Of course you're free to use the word in any way you wish but the fact remains that 'falsifiability' has a very specific meaning in the philosophy of science.
Peter Holmes
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 1:34 pm
Logik wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 11:39 am
Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 11:28 amYou're going to cause confusion if you continue to conflate the terms on a philosophy forum.
And yet you were perfectly capable of recognising that I mean the same thing by "falsifiability" and "falsification", so I guess your warning of confusion is somewhat unnecessary?
You seem to have forgotten that it was my confusion about your claim which motivated me to start this exchange.
In my view, to use "falsifiability" to mean "testability" is far more prone to causing confusion, so your suggested vocabulary correction has been noted and discarded.
Of course you're free to use the word in any way you wish but the fact remains that 'falsifiability' has a very specific meaning in the philosophy of science.
Needless to say, if 'falsify' can mean '(provisionally) show to be false by testing', just as 'verify' can mean '(provisionally) show to be true by testing', then we can test any factual assertion to show it's provisionally false or true - though I think Popper argued that 'at least not-false' is as close as we can get to the truth, at least in science. And the only way to show a factual assertion is at least not-false is by testing it.

And needless to say, to reject any use of a word is linguistic prescriptivism, which we all agree is a mistake.
Logik
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Logik »

Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 2:20 pm And needless to say, to reject any use of a word is linguistic prescriptivism, which we all agree is a mistake.
The law of non-contradiction is also a form of linguistic perspectivism, but if we don't at least adhere to some standard then it's all in vein.
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 2:20 pm then we can test any factual assertion to show it's provisionally false or true
And what sort of test do you propose?

If you pre-suppose Heliocentrism then "The Earth orbits the Sun" is true.
If you pre-suppose "Baryocentrism" then "The Earth orbits the Sun" is false.

So you are yet to provide an example of a fact which is "true irrespective of what anybody believes or claims to know".
Logik
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Logik »

Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 1:34 pm Of course you're free to use the word in any way you wish but the fact remains that 'falsifiability' has a very specific meaning in the philosophy of science.
Perhaps you can explain this difference to me? When I google for "falsifiability" I end up on the pages which describe my current use of the word, so whatever meaning or use of 'falsifiability' you have in mind seems to be uncommon.
Peter Holmes
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Logik wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 2:43 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 2:20 pm And needless to say, to reject any use of a word is linguistic prescriptivism, which we all agree is a mistake.
The law of non-contradiction is also a form of linguistic perspectivism, but if we don't at least adhere to some standard then it's all in vein.
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 2:20 pm then we can test any factual assertion to show it's provisionally false or true
And what sort of test do you propose?

If you pre-suppose Heliocentrism then "The Earth orbits the Sun" is true.
If you pre-suppose "Baryocentrism" then "The Earth orbits the Sun" is false.

So you are yet to provide an example of a fact which is "true irrespective of what anybody believes or claims to know".
That what we call true factual assertions are necessarily situational and perspectival is trivially true and inconsequential. And never mind cosmology, from a quantum-mechanical perspective, the claim 'that is a dog' is false. We can describe things in different ways, but that doesn't mean we can't say true and false things about them within a specified context.

Again, what sort of foundation is it that you think doesn't exist?
Logik
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Logik »

Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 3:00 pm That what we call true factual assertions are necessarily situational and perspectival is trivially true and inconsequential.
It is not trivial and inconsequential if simply switching perspectives is sufficient to turn a true assertion into a false one.
It obliterates your notion of "objectivity".
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 3:00 pm And never mind cosmology, from a quantum-mechanical perspective, the claim 'that is a dog' is false. We can describe things in different ways, but that doesn't mean we can't say true and false things about them within a specified context.
I agree. We can describe things in many different ways. But that is not my issue.

My issue is that even when we describe things in the same way and in the same sense, they are true from one perspective and false from another. As per my "Earth orbits the Sun" example. From what perspective and in what context is "this is a dog" true? From what perspective/context is it false?

Is it a dog or a wolf?
Wolf.jpg
Wolf.jpg (63.43 KiB) Viewed 767 times
Peter Holmes wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 3:00 pm Again, what sort of foundation is it that you think doesn't exist?
You want me to prove a negative? I don't know how to do that.

This is why I asked you to give me an example of a 'fact' that is "true irrespective of what anybody claims or knows".
Your example of "Earth orbits the Sun" is not a fact, since both Earth and Sun orbit the barycenter of the Solar system.
Scientismist
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Scientismist »

Logik wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 2:50 pm
Scientismist wrote: Sat Dec 15, 2018 1:34 pm Of course you're free to use the word in any way you wish but the fact remains that 'falsifiability' has a very specific meaning in the philosophy of science.
Perhaps you can explain this difference to me? When I google for "falsifiability" I end up on the pages which describe my current use of the word, so whatever meaning or use of 'falsifiability' you have in mind seems to be uncommon.
Try here: https://explorable.com/falsifiability

Karl Popper's Basic Scientific Principle

Falsifiability, according to the philosopher Karl Popper, defines the inherent testability of any scientific hypothesis.
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