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Is black actually white?

 
 
Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:01 pm
I have never taken a class in debate, and I imagine this is probably a Debate 101 exercise, but I've noticed that people on this site are so good at debating (especially when it comes to politics) that I see equally compelling arguments no matter what the topic seems to be. That made me wonder: Is it possible that somebody could actually argue convincingly that black is, in fact, white?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 5,622 • Replies: 80
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Craven de Kere
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:04 pm
Sure. ;-)

Well, convincingly for the topic chosen.
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kickycan
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:06 pm
Okay, maybe I should have rephrased that. Prove to me that black is, in fact, white.
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Craven de Kere
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:14 pm
Nah, it's not something I would be interested in arguing, but your question is interesting and relevant to debate because it highlights that debate skill is not exclusive to a correct position.
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kickycan
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:37 pm
Thanks. I've realized that in the time that I've been on here. You and a few others that I've seen on here are truly amazing at it. I appreciate your input. hopefully somebody will take up this challenge and show me how it's done.
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dlowan
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:38 pm
Well, chromatically speaking, they have great similarities.

Actually - since black is black because it absorbs all light, and white because it reflects it - we could argue that black, in absorbing all of what makes white white, is the very quintessence of white: while white, whose nature is to REFLECT (hence repel) all that makes white white, is its very antithesis.

Thus, in a sense, white IS black and black IS white.


There you go! Happy?
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fishin
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:40 pm
Black and white aren't both the same. Now Red and white... THAT could be argued. Wink lol
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kickycan
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:47 pm
My brain is melting . . .
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Craven de Kere
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 10:51 pm
kickycan,

fishin' has a very valid point. You might want to choose two real colours, then at least people would have a chance.

What I would do is something I did to mess with kid's heads as a child.

I would argue that the way your brain interprets light may well be very different from the way everyone else's does.

For example, when you see the colour that you call red, your brain is really seeing what we all call yellow.

But since you have never seen with the eyes and brain of others and never will you grew used to calling this colour (that to us looks like what you call "yellow") "red".

It's just a 5-year old's mental trip but it can't be disproven. The way your brain interprets light reflections may well be different from that of others, and you will never be able to compare them and prove or disprove that there is a discrepancy.
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 11:14 pm
Well, in a sense, black is white and white is black because neither are colors.
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twyvel
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 11:35 pm
Light never makes it to the brain so the brain doesn't see light. Light is a mental construct not seen by brains and eyes but by awareness.
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littlek
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 11:37 pm
wah?
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kickycan
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 11:38 pm
Okay, now that last one doesn't make any sense. That just proves that they have the common quality of not being colors. Am I right here, Craven?

Maybe we should try to prove that I am you.
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Craven de Kere
 
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Reply Wed 14 Jan, 2004 11:52 pm
twyvel wrote:
Light never makes it to the brain so the brain doesn't see light. Light is a mental construct not seen by brains and eyes but by awareness.


This is true in the same sense that email never reaches its destination.

Upon what basis do you declare light to be merely a "mental construct" as opposed to a phenomenon that has existence beyond the mind?

Light is, indeed, "seen" by eyes in that eyes are able to capure its existence similar in manner to the way that a camera is able to.

The light never reaches the brain but when the eyes perceive it they send that information on to the brain.

Saying that "awareness" sees while the eyes don't is a position that in all sincerity is a bit too abstract and makes a little too little sense for me to take seriously as anything more than pseudo-philosobabble. Do you deny that light is a phenomenon that is captured by the eyes and transmitted to our brains?
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twyvel
 
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Reply Thu 15 Jan, 2004 12:20 am
Craven

Quote:
Light is, indeed, "seen" by eyes in that eyes are able to capure its existence similar in manner to the way that a camera is able to.


It's not similar at all. The emulsion on the film reacts to light, that is all. The eyes are similar to a pair of binoculars; without them one cannot see the distance hill, and with no one (awareness) looking out the eyes see nothing.


Quote:
The light never reaches the brain but when the eyes perceive it they send that information on to the brain.

Saying that "awareness" sees while the eyes don't is a position that in all sincerity is a bit too abstract and makes a little too little sense for me to take seriously as anything more than pseudo-philosobabble. Do you deny that light is a phenomenon that is captured by the eyes and transmitted to our brains?


Here's your circular argument:

  • The eyes send the information onto the brain.
  • The brain creates an image which is seen by the awareness.
  • All the while the whole thing is mental, one has never left the mental realm.
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husker
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jan, 2004 12:24 am
twyvel wrote:
Light never makes it to the brain so the brain doesn't see light. Light is a mental construct not seen by brains and eyes but by awareness.

what about them holes in my head allowing the light in? Razz
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Craven de Kere
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jan, 2004 12:33 am
twyvel wrote:

It's not similar at all. The emulsion on the film reacts to light, that is all. The eyes are similar to a pair of binoculars; without them one cannot see the distance hill, and with no one (awareness) looking out the eyes see nothing.


Can you please rephrase this.

Quote:

Here's your circular argument:

  • The eyes send the information onto the brain.
  • The brain creates an image which is seen by the awareness.
  • All the while the whole thing is mental, one has never left the mental realm.


It's not at all circular twyvel, it starts with a phenomenon external to the mind and is not entirely mental.

Light's existence is not contingient on awareness, it exists regardless.

When an external phenomenon is exclusively a "mental construct" it's called imagination.

Light exists outside of imagination, and you have demonstrated no circular argument whatsoever. Pseudo-philosobabble can be held at levels abstract and non-sensical enough to discourage being debunked. But logic on teh other hand is very straightforward.

My contention to you is a simple one and in no way circular. It's based on the premise that light exists as a phenomenon even when it's not observed.

It is based on the premise that light is a phenomenon external to the brain.

Do you challenge that assertion or not? Because simply ignoring the gist of an argument in order to call it circular (when it is not) is not going to get myuch play from me.

You say "All the while the whole thing is mental, one has never left the mental realm."

That's bullshit, like I said, the premise of my position starts outside the "mental realm". Light exists whether or not an "awareness" is around to observe it and mentally process it.

Edit: added last sentence and corrected a phrase.
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twyvel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jan, 2004 12:33 am
Oh yes, them holes, Very Happy
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InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jan, 2004 12:35 am
mark
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Smiley
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jan, 2004 12:46 am
Psssh...

White light is the color we see when all colors are present.
Black light is the color we see when all colors are absent.

Only, it's important to note that there is no absolute in nature. Colors are not "fully present" or "fully absent", simply because it's physically impossible. How would you have 10 cubic inches of nothing but pure 100% light?? Because of this, one source of white light will vary a little bit from another, and the same for blackness as well. Every sample will be different.

Therefore, what we really have are an infinite range of grays, some mostly black and some mostly white, and of course it all depends on how sensitive our eyes are at the moment. Where should we draw the line, and call something "black" or "white" when in fact it's just a convenient lie used to oversimplify various conditions of gray?

Obviously, neither state actually exists and both words describe the same variable actuality: some amount of evenly-mixed color frequencies.
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