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The Concept of Independent Reality in Discussions of Philosophy

 
 
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 04:50 pm
@joefromchicago,
Quote:
I'm not sure why you'd care what a cognitive scientist would have to say, since they're all naive realists too.


Good try at a dated one-liner, but now nonsense as you would find out for yourself if you took the trouble to follow up my earlier references.
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 04:52 pm
@igm,
igm wrote:
But the question is do you also know that you are independent of these things or are you dependently linked to the thing that you say you are independent of?

I am not the wall. Of that I am quite certain. As for being "dependently linked" to the wall, I have no idea what that means.

igm wrote:
I am saying that reality is not independent; for example in order for me to see a brick wall there needs to be a light source, the light bounces off the object and enters the eye which impinges on my retina. The inverted image causes the cones and rods to send nerve impulses to the brain's visual cortex which in turn creates a picture of the object based on a two dimensional inverted image and dependent on the health of my retina and my visual cortex a picture appears which I am conscious of. The whole sequence was dependently linked the only evidence I have is the picture I am conscious of.

That's a very complicated way of saying that you don't have sense impressions of those things that don't make impressions on your senses. Thanks, but I knew that already.

igm wrote:
So how do you draw the conclusion that there is an 'Independent Reality' when it is all dependent. If one of the links in the chain is broken a picture would not appear and even then I must infer those links from the picture alone?

I draw that impression because everyone else tends to perceive the same reality that I do. If I were relying on my sense impressions alone, I would have no reason to believe that those impressions had any objective validity, just as my dreams are a sense impression for myself alone. But the testimony of others, who report the same impressions as I do, tends to confirm that reality is not something that is going on solely inside of my own head.
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 04:53 pm
@fresco,
fresco wrote:

Good try at a one-liner, but basically nonsense as you would find out for yourself if you took the trouble to follow up my earlier references.

As I've told you many times, it's not my job to track down your evidence.
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 04:58 pm
@joefromchicago,
Quote:
I draw that impression because everyone else tends to perceive the same reality that I do.

Laughing Prove it !
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 05:02 pm
@joefromchicago,
Quote:
As I've told you many times, it's not my job to track down your evidence.

Yes we know what "your job is" !
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 05:58 pm
@igm,
I recall once telling Joe that I would hire him as my lawyer because of his obvious skills but (I think I said) I don't care for his behavior as a philosopher--I imagine he studied with Jesuits.
This came to mind, Igm, because of your very pertinent question of whether he believes in a "truly existent independent reality or not". I'm convinced he's completely comfortable with his naive realist worldview--as a philosophical not just an everyday practical position. All other possibilities are hypothetical playthings. I've come to face the fact that (at least with us) he's little more than a cynical Chicago lawyer. That makes me very cynical in my discussions with him.
As you may see, I'm pissed with him for not respecting the sincerity of others in this very sincere thread.
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 07:13 pm
@wandeljw,
wandeljw wrote:

My response may not be satisfactory. I think you and others are talking about "Reality" and some of us are talking about reality. Either way is there any benefit to denying Reality (reality)?


Yes, I think there are benefits. If by "reality" you mean our everyday assumption of everyday things, I think even they deserve the benefit of the doubt..
Consider the application to law and justice. If we had the death penalty in this country, we may have killed a woman for having been the victim of a dingo stealing her baby. Initial understanding of reality: a dingo took the baby. After much research of what "really" happened: there was no dingo, it was a murder. Many years later, an even deeper understanding of "reality": a dingo took the baby. The point is, people were and still are far too ready to accept the obvious basic everyday reality as an objective "Reality".
Time complicates matters even further. Yesterday there were eggs in my fridge. Today there are not. Those eggs are now these words I'm typing and part of how I would attempt to define those eggs as separate from me. When I started typing this paragraph, some atoms of the computer were part of me, and vice versa. Forensic science relies heavily on the constant interchange between "me" and "everything else".
So I think it makes practical sense to begin with the assumption that there is no objective reality, your subjective one is your best approximation, and you should use the tools at your disposal to determine which aspects of your subjective reality are most compatible with an ideal objective one. Checking your observations against those of others is one of those tools, but Sunday morning in the Bible Belt demonstrates the limitations of that. In fact, nothing better demonstrates that a bit of "just because it's obvious to everybody doesn't make it true" could go a long way.

0 Replies
 
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 07:27 pm
@Shapeless,
Shapeless wrote:

... Reality may exist only "by our consent," but consenting to the inevitable is a matter of pure semantics. If you think it isn't, then show me how withholding your consent about the existence of the wall changes the consequences of driving your car into it.


Well, for a start, denying the existence of the wall as an objective fact makes me look at it differently. One of the reasons I ran into your wall was because I didn't have wings. Another is because I too large to pass through it. Another is because I arrived at the wrong time in history. I think this path leads to a better understanding of the nature of the theoretical objective reality, (the assumption of which I agree with, as long as we accept it as only theoretical). Only by thinking about that for a very long time have I been able to come to the conclusion that there is no absolute reality as such.

Another line of reasoning, let us assume that there is an absolute reality. How fast a snapshot would be required to capture the state of the universe at any given moment? To be a complete picture would require a shutter be open precisely zero units of time.

As to the conflation of "unknowable" with "non-existent", I'm trying not to do so. It is contemplation of the former that leads to the conclusion of the latter.
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 07:55 pm
@Eorl,
Everything is subjective and that's an objective fact (Searle). Reality is "objective", what I make of it is "subjective", and what we (as a cultural system) make of it is "inter-subjective". But these are mere words. I do want to be able to distinguish illusions and delusions from realities for practical reasons, but more importantly, there is the spiritual motivation, the desire to know how I and you fit into this world. What's our reality? What's are true nature?
We should investigate our experience (in all ways including meditation, reading and discussions like some of us are having now,sincerely).
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 07:55 pm
@Eorl,
Everything is subjective and that's an objective fact (Searle). Reality is "objective", what I make of it is "subjective", and what we (as a cultural system) make of it is "inter-subjective". But these are mere words. I do want to be able to distinguish illusions and delusions from realities for practical reasons, but more importantly, there is the spiritual motivation, the desire to know how I and you fit into this world. What's our reality? What's are true nature?
We should investigate our experience (in all ways including meditation, reading and discussions like some of us are having now,sincerely).
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 08:07 pm
@JLNobody,
Our reality is what we experience from it. Much of what we conceptualize may be influenced by culture, language, environment, education, parents, siblings, relatives, friends, and financial success, but how we perceive them are subjective to the individual.
0 Replies
 
wandeljw
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 08:29 pm
@JLNobody,
JLNobody wrote:
Reality is "objective", what I make of it is "subjective"


Would this mean that reality does not become subjective until we make a judgment about it?
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 09:25 pm
@wandeljw,
Or conceptualize or experience it somehow from some perspective. Phenomena, I suppose, are subjective or inter-subjective. And this is so because a phenomenon IS experience. There is no phenomenon that is not experience (noun). Notice I did not say "that is not experienced (verb).
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 09:47 pm
@fresco,
fresco wrote:

Quote:
I draw that impression because everyone else tends to perceive the same reality that I do.

Laughing Prove it !

Laughing Nothing could be easier. The proofs happen all the time. Any time that someone steps around a wall instead of into it, that proves that the person perceives the wall to be existent and solid. The fact that you do not follow the example of Empedocles and throw yourself into an active volcano is rather solid evidence that you agree with the vast majority of people in sharing their view of volcanoes. The examples are legion, so there's no need to go through them all. Furthermore, as a naive realist yourself, I'm sure you need not be burdened with the needless repetition of evidence that you yourself could hardly gainsay.
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 09:53 pm
@JLNobody,
JLNobody wrote:
As you may see, I'm pissed with him for not respecting the sincerity of others in this very sincere thread.

You can blow it out your ass, JLN. I don't doubt your sincerity, I just think you're wrong. Accusing me of disrespecting you, rather than disagreeing with your position, is a cheap, juvenile tactic that is beneath contempt. And in the future, you coward, if you want to insult me, you can direct your post to me instead of someone else.
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 09:58 pm
@fresco,
fresco wrote:

Quote:
As I've told you many times, it's not my job to track down your evidence.

Yes we know what "your job is" !

Well, it's better than being the village idiot.
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Fri 30 Dec, 2011 11:15 pm
@joefromchicago,
I didn't mean to accuse you of disrespecting me, but of disrespecting the whole process of this thread. You ended up responding almost exactly as I anticipated, like a total jerk. I was writing ABOUT you, not TO you.
I just erased a bunch of infantile stuff directed to you because I don't want to lower myself to your level.
Now have the last stupid word and enough!
Procrustes
 
  1  
Reply Sat 31 Dec, 2011 12:59 am
@JLNobody,
The very sense that our subjectivity is in itself reality experiencing reality subjectively isn't a stretch from phenomena being itself an experience or a singularity in which experience is both object and subject.
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 31 Dec, 2011 02:41 am
@JLNobody,
You have my sympathies. I can understand snide remarks from fools, but not from someone of obvious intelligence. His stalking of us on philosophy threads, in which he is blatantly out of his depth, would make an interesting study for an analyst. If he thinks we are "idiots" why bother ? Maybe he feels threatened ?..maybe he has appointed himself as the champion of "common sense" riding into battle on behalf of the less articulate....? Unfortunately his "knight's helmet" restricts his vision to the extent that he fails to see that "common sense" is already encapsulated here by references to pragmatism. He has worn his armour so long he has forgotten how to take it off, especially when the need is to "swim". I would leave him to drown, but you are more compassionate, even though you may be spat on for your efforts.




wandeljw
 
  3  
Reply Sat 31 Dec, 2011 06:39 am
@fresco,
Joefromchicago is not "out of his depth" in my opinion. He obviously is familiar with the ideas of many philosophers. It seems that he is unwilling to jump on certain trends in philosophy because he sees them as unproductive.
 

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