Is God necessary for morality?

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Skepdick
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Skepdick »

Immanuel Can wrote: Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:44 pm
Skepdick wrote: Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:37 pm I know that you don't know about transfinite numbers
You think there are an infinite number of hairs on your head?

To the barber with you...though she will never finish. :D
You think transfinite means infinite?

You continue to confirm my knowledge about your lack of knowledge.
surreptitious57
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by surreptitious57 »

Skepdick wrote:
You think transfinite means infinite ?
I never knew there was another order between the finite numbers and the infinities
Sounds incredibly counter intuitive but if mathematics says its true then it must be

I dont think Mr Can actually clicked on the link hence his ignorance
He is quite knowledgeable on Christianity but mathematics less so
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Skepdick wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 2:41 pm
Immanuel Can wrote: Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:44 pm
Skepdick wrote: Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:37 pm I know that you don't know about transfinite numbers
You think there are an infinite number of hairs on your head?

To the barber with you...though she will never finish. :D
You think transfinite means infinite?
No. I think the infinite is the issue. I'm not fishing for red herrings today.
Skepdick
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Skepdick »

Immanuel Can wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 4:44 pm No. I think the infinite is the issue. I'm not fishing for red herrings today.
Sure. lets get on point then.

Is the size of the universe finite?
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Skepdick wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 5:08 pm
Immanuel Can wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 4:44 pm No. I think the infinite is the issue. I'm not fishing for red herrings today.
Sure. lets get on point then.

Is the size of the universe finite?
The physical universe, and at a given millisecond? It has to be, if we can speak correctly of the universe expanding...which empirically, we can observe it is.

But that's not necessary to the argument. All that's necessary is the existence of cause and effect, and a linear timeline. If the universe were, just for argument's sake, larger than it is, so long as cause and effect are a reality, there is zero mathematical possibility of an infinitely regressing chain of causes.
Skepdick
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Skepdick »

Immanuel Can wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 5:13 pm The physical universe, and at a given millisecond? It has to be, if we can speak correctly of the universe expanding...which empirically, we can observe it is.
And? Some infinites are larger than other infinities.
Immanuel Can wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 5:13 pm But that's not necessary to the argument. All that's necessary is the existence of cause and effect, and a linear timeline. If the universe were, just for argument's sake, larger than it is, so long as cause and effect are a reality, there is zero mathematical possibility of an infinitely regressing chain of causes.
So you don't know what "infinite" means.
surreptitious57
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by surreptitious57 »

Immanuel Can wrote:
All that is necessary is the existence of cause and effect and a linear timeline . If the universe were just for arguments sake larger than it is
so long there is zero mathematical possibility of an infinitely regressing chain of causes
There are as many frames of reference within a linear timeline as there are observers
Time is therefore not absolute like Newton believed as Special Relativity falsified this

Infinity already exist in the Universe because any two points in space or time can be split into infinite parts
A computer calculating every single irrational number from 0 to I at light speed would never get to the end
So had it to calculate all the irrational numbers in the age of the Universe from I3.72 billion to 0 it would also never get to the end

A photon in vacuum is potentially infinite because it would carry on forever absent any forces or objects that would cause it to disintegrate
The same is true of any massless particle which in vacuum always propagates at c and that speed can be regarded as having infinite property

And so there are some very specific examples of potential or actual infinity that either do exist or could exist in a Universe that is only finite
We dont actually know if the Universe is infinite or finite but either way infinity within it will still exist as those examples I gave demonstrate
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

surreptitious57 wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 5:58 pm
Immanuel Can wrote:
All that is necessary is the existence of cause and effect and a linear timeline . If the universe were just for arguments sake larger than it is
so long there is zero mathematical possibility of an infinitely regressing chain of causes
There are as many frames of reference within a linear timeline as there are observers
This means nothing of relevance, I must say. It again mistakes epistemology for ontology.
Infinity already exist in the Universe because any two points in space or time can be split into infinite parts
Missing the point again, I'm afraid.

It's "infinite regression of causes" that is impossible, not merely "infinity."

"Infinite" is an adjective. It matters what the noun is.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Skepdick wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 5:15 pm So you don't know what "infinite" means.
I do.

Do you understand the phrase "infinite chain of cause and effect"? Because in this argument, it only applies to that.

Nobody's arguing that, say, "infinite points on a circle" do not exist. But an "infinite chain of causes?" No. Not if we understand what being a "cause" requires.
Skepdick
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Skepdick »

Immanuel Can wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 6:38 pm I do.
Obviously you don't. Transfinite is not infinite.
Immanuel Can wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 6:38 pm Do you understand the phrase "infinite chain of cause and effect"? Because in this argument, it only applies to that.
Do you understand the causality is disputed?
Immanuel Can wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 6:38 pm Nobody's arguing that, say, "infinite points on a circle" do not exist. But an "infinite chain of causes?" No. Not if we understand what being a "cause" requires.
Do you understand that if you conceptualise causality as a "chain of causes" you are talking about countable (discrete) sets?

Do you also understand that "causality" is itself an epistemic notion?
Belinda
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Belinda »

Immanuel Can wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 1:05 pm
Belinda wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 10:40 am Intersubjectivity is a fact of life.
That is true. But saying so doesn't even remotely justify thinking it grounds morality. People negotiate all the time. It doesn't imply that they simply negotiate morality into existence. That's magical thinking.
Regarding sources, disinterest is the best guide we have to integrity.
Wait.

Why? :shock:

Think carefully. What would we be supposing, if we think "disinterestedness" is the key? Setting aside the Postmodern insistence that "disinterestedness" is actually impossible to human beings, let's suppose it can be done. How would we know it would it be morally "good"?

It would only be "good" if we had already established that equality was a moral value, was "justice," and that "justice" was also a correct moral goal. And how do we know these things? We would need grounds for thinking it, and it is not apparent from any natural observation we have. What's clear from natural observation is that people are unequal, and what we choose to call "injustices" happen all the time. What are our grounds for thinking we should go against such a natural observation?
An icon is precisely not the same as a statue .

Right. It adds the element of worship. It's closer to an idol than a statue ever is.
Disinterestedness is the best guarantee we have for the best moral behaviour. We have no other grounds for good moral behaviour. To separate the sheep from the goats is best not done by legal minds who look up a book or rules, but painstakingly , situation by situation, with a large measure of empathy and ordinary human kindness.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Belinda wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 10:40 am Disinterestedness is the best guarantee we have for the best moral behaviour.
Major problems with that. Postmodern theorists assure us that nobody ever is "disinterested." Many schools of philosophy even hold that "disinterestedness" would be either unrealistic, or a bad idea, because it would contradict things like "rational self-interest." Perhaps you mean "impartiality"? But that's not better, because nobody's going to be that, either.

I guess you'd better explain how "disinterestedness" would be used, in practice to achieve justice.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Skepdick wrote: Thu Jul 30, 2020 7:17 pm Do you understand the causality is disputed?
Not rationally, so far.

But I'm hopeful you'll provide me with at least one example of an effect for which there is no cause. If there are any, there should be at least one you can name.

Go ahead.
Ginkgo
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Ginkgo »

Immanuel Can wrote: I note this. But a "cause" automatically implies an "effect," and the reverse is true as well; and "effect" implies there was a "cause." "Contradiction" is not the right word for the problem: "entailment" is. The one is entailed by the other.
I think we are talking about two different things.
Immanuel Can wrote: Now, I don't see the example I asked for. And you say such things do not exist in the physical world? But you did say "there are". I took that to be a claim that causeless effects do, in fact, exist...and it's not unreasonable of me, then, to ask you for one, is it?
What part of "I didn't say there are causeless effects" are you having troubled with?
BTW Can you please stop quote mining it's getting very tiresome?
Immanuel Can wrote: But if no such things as "causeless effects" exist in the physical world, then we are indeed on a linear timeline with a cause-effect chain in place, empirically. And we're back to the infinite regress problem: no chain of causes and effects can be infinite, because mathematically, infinite prerequisites means the impossibility of a starting point.
As I said before, causes and effects are so intertwined that it is impossible to trace causality on a linear timeline back to a first cause.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is God necessary for morality?

Post by Immanuel Can »

Ginkgo wrote: Fri Jul 31, 2020 1:50 am BTW Can you please stop quote mining it's getting very tiresome?
I can. But if I do, our messages get progressively longer, and longer and longer...and that's even more tiresome. I would prefer that we really on the little arrow in blue beside our names, which instantly takes us back to the totality of the original message.

I make no attempt to distort your words here. I just tell you what I'm understanding as essential, and clip in order to keep things within reasonable length. Not everything people write is under contest, so I try to keep to those things I mean to strongly affirm or to question, and leave the uncontroversial bits behind.

So, for example, in this response I would not respond to "I think we're talking about two different things," because that's plausible, and because I don't intend to question it. But I would clip in the below, because I have some further questions about it.

Fair enough?
As I said before, causes and effects are so intertwined that it is impossible to trace causality on a linear timeline back to a first cause.
This is the error of thinking epistemology defines ontology, or limits logic. It doesn't.

I concede that we don't know the precise causes for every effect. But that we don't know the precise causes does not even cast a shadow of doubt on the dynamic of cause-and-effect itself. If I don't know what causes the Sun to rise in the morning, that does not remotely imply the sun will not rise in the morning, or that the effect I see (the Sun appearing to "rise") has no cause, or must be assumed to have no cause until I know precisely what it is. Rather, a rational assumption is that it HAS a cause, but one I don't yet understand -- the fundamental supposition of all science, actually.

So cause-and-effect remains real. And we don't need to know precisely which causes produce which effects to say so. All we have to know is that the rational assumption is a cause could be found one day, for there will be one.

Here is where the mathematics help us out. Maths, as you know, use symbols to represent actual, empirical quantities. The great thing about using the number "3" for example, is that you don't have to know "three whats?" before you can use it: it works equally precisely for 3 goats, 3 aqualungs, 3 armchairs, 3 planetoids or 3 atomic particles. Mathematics provide universal placeholders for actual things.

So we can model causality mathematically, just as I have suggested you do: count backwards to infinity. That's what it takes to model a chain of infinitely regressing causes. And you'll find it's not just long, it's impossible. So, without knowing precise causes-and-effects, we can decisively prove that ANY chain of causes and effects will not be possible as a chain of infinite length.

Thus, the world is not the product of an infinite chain of causes.

QED.
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