• Lionino
    849
    Then, they both(Bob and the dumb kids) know what a butterfly is, and the other pieces of information (in one case, it's appearance, in the other, its origin) don't seem to bear on the respective knowledge claims. It doesn't seem to follow that the opposite (in each case) is required to bring the information to the level of 'knowledge'.

    I don't think that's a counter as much as a parallel. They both know what a butterfly is under different criteria.
    AmadeusD

    In that case what Bob and the kids "know" as "butterfly" are different things. For Bob,
    "butterfly" is the same thing as "the thing that comes out of the cocoon". When Bob thinks of a butterfly he does not have the same mental content as the kids.
    Your argument seem to be either that both parties have a mental content at all for the word "butterfly" regardless of whether those contents are alike, or that there is some essential property of "butterfly" you didn't specify that both parties know of regardless of the accidents (shape colour etc) of a butterfly.

    Bob knows merely that a butterfly comes from a cocoonAmadeusD

    By the mental content of butterfly to Bob, that would be redundant. The thing that comes from a cocoon comes from a cocoon.

    This seems to go the President example pretty squarely - I'm of the view that we can know Bob will become President, regardless of whether we know what a President is.AmadeusD

    What we understand by president is a set of official duties and privileges. If Bob does not understand anything at all by the word "president", I believe that we will end up with a non-proposition, "Bob will become ∅", and belief in the context of knowledge must be propositional.
  • Ludwig V
    663
    I think the religious term for this is ineffable.Tom Storm
    Ineffability is a popular topic in this argument. I wish I could wave my hand and abolish it, But that would be to rely on a rather primitive version of logical positivism, so the grounds for that are not solid. On the other hand, the mystics can only persuade us to accept that their experiences are true, so philosophy will not be impressed. But the fact that some people have such experiences seems undeniable. Dismissing them all as frauds or unbalanced is as implausible as claiming that all such experiences are genuine. In the end, it will come back to common sense and everyday life to sort the sheep from the goats - and the criterion is not truth/falsity.

    sacrifice himself to himself to save us from himself because of a rule he made himself?Tom Storm
    ,
    There is some room for some justifications for sacrifice. But it is too often talked about as if it were just a case of passing the parcel of guilt from the sinner to someone or something else or paying a fine. No, thanks.
    You put me in mind of an important point that I did not include. For a very long time, there was, in philosophy, a long series of attempts to prove that God's existence was necessary and that a priori argument could be developed. But lately, it seems that both theists and atheists have agreed that it is an empirical question.

    Both sides think that empirical evidence justified their view, so we can conclude that both sides are wrong. But we should remember Laplace's famous reply I had no need of that hypothesis. ("Je n'avais pas besoin de cette hypothèse-là" - (allegedly as a reply to Napoleon, who had asked why he hadn't mentioned God in his book on astronomy.) See WIkipedia entry on him. For him, it was clearly not an empirical question, but not a necessary question either. For me, it is a question of an attitude, which guides the interpretation of evidence. What does that mean? For a hint, consider Berkeley's argument in his A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge. See, for example, section 109.

    I suspect that discussion of God's existence will turn out to be no less infinite that he is supposed to be. (I can never decide whether God should be a he, a she, a s/he or an it.)
  • Tom Storm
    8.1k
    (I can never decide whether God should be a he, a she, a s/he or an it.)Ludwig V

    :up: In light of recent fashion, I think, 'they/them.'

    My favourite apologists are the currently burgeoning presuppositionalists, who bypass empiricism completely (via the transcendental argument and Cornelius Van Til).

    But we should remember Laplace's famous reply I had no need of that hypothesis.Ludwig V

    This was generally my position. God fails to assist me in any sense making, primarily because theism has scant explanatory power. Tackling the various proofs/arguments are just for sport.
  • Ludwig V
    663
    Tackling the various proofs/arguments are just for sport.Tom Storm
    I was surprised to discover when I first ventured into this on-line world, that many people seem to be dead serious about the arguments. Which is not to deny that others just love the argument - for sport, as you say.

    My favourite apologists are the currently burgeoning presuppositionalists, who bypass empiricism completely (via the transcendental argument and Cornelius Van Til).Tom Storm
    Yes. I have encountered those ideas. I haven't got my head around this, and my reluctance to engage with it is a big part of the reason why. The strategy is undoubtedly ingenious, but doesn't offer the sceptics and unbelievers much incentive to engage. Why do you like them?

    In light of recent fashion, I think, 'they/them.'Tom Storm
    Yes. I use that sometimes, but I'm not comfortable with it. It's such a lash-up. But maybe it would not be inappropriate for a Trinitarian God.
  • Tom Storm
    8.1k
    The strategy is undoubtedly ingenious, but doesn't offer the sceptics and unbelievers much incentive to engage. Why do you like them?Ludwig V

    Mainly because, as you say, they're ingenious. Quite a stunt to take reason (the skeptic's prized tool against 'superstition') and use the very possibility of rationality as proof for god. But they can also be monotonous and repetitive.

    I was surprised to discover when I first ventured into this on-line world, that many people seem to be dead serious about the arguments.Ludwig V

    Me too.
  • Janus
    15.3k
    But the fact that some people have such experiences seems undeniable. Dismissing them all as frauds or unbalanced is as implausible as claiming that all such experiences are genuine. In the end, it will come back to common sense and everyday life to sort the sheep from the goats - and the criterion is not truth/falsity.Ludwig V

    Mystics undoubtedly experience something they attempt to evoke in their writings. It is the postulated ontological or metaphysical implications of what is experienced that are questionable and that have nothing at all to do with philosophy, due to their vacuity.

    This is not to say that the experience itself is not rich and cannot be inspiring, even life-changing; it is necessarily vacuous only in the propositional. not the poetical. sense.
  • wonderer1
    1.5k
    This is not to say that the experience itself is not rich and cannot be inspiring, even life-changing; it is necessarily vacuous only in the propositional. not the poetical. sense.Janus

    :up:

    It seems to me that there is awfully good evidence from entheogens that some capacity for 'spiritual experience' tends to be a physical characteristic of human brains.
  • Janus
    15.3k
    It seems to me that there is awfully good evidence from entheogens that some capacity for 'spiritual experience' tends to be a physical characteristic of human brains.wonderer1

    Yes. I agree, having experimented extensively with entheogens myself, and I think the 'spiritual' aspect is a 'feeling' phenomenon which does not support any claim about the metaphysical nature of reality. Religious and metaphysical conclusions are arbitrary, culturally driven, after the fact add-ons.

    This is something which I think is so obvious, but those who wish to believe in something transcendent can never seem to, in the face of all the compelling evidence, bring themselves to accept it. Wishful thinking and confirmation bias and the scotomas that go with them rule among the spiritually and religiously minded.
  • Ludwig V
    663
    Mainly because, as you say, they're ingenious. Quite a stunt to take reason (the skeptic's prized tool against 'superstition') and use the very possibility of rationality as proof for god. But they can also be monotonous and repetitive.Tom Storm
    The puzzle that strikes me is why he thinks his approach might change the mind of an atheist. Agnostics may be more open to it, though this one certainly isn't. It seems more relevant to Christians talking amongst themselves.

    It's all very well to talk of rationality, but what, on this account is it? Is it the rationality of Hume, which "is and ought to be, the slave of the passions", or of Aristotle, who revolutionizes Plato's idea of it by observing that "reason, by itself, moves nothing". Why would a rational God present us with the Bible - especially the Old Testament - as its book? I could go on, but it might become monotonous and repetitive.

    Yes. I agree, having experimented extensively with entheogens myself, and I think the 'spiritual' aspect is a 'feeling' phenomenon which does not support any claim about the metaphysical nature of reality. Religious and metaphysical conclusions are arbitrary, culturally driven, after the fact add-ons.Janus
    In a sense, yes. Though I'm not sure that "arbitrary" is the right world. I have an impression that the experiences seem to fit in to whatever religious/metaphysical framework the experiencer already has. Which is not to say that they may not change how the ideas are expressed and the aspects that are emphasized.

    This is not to say that the experience itself is not rich and cannot be inspiring, even life-changing; it is necessarily vacuous only in the propositional. not the poetical. sense.Janus
    That's certainly true. Though aren't some experiences - "bad trips" - paranoid fantasies, which may be life-changing, but not in a good way. That's why I say they have to be assessed, in the end, by their results in the ordinary world.
  • flannel jesus
    777
    It seems more relevant to Christians talking amongst themselvesLudwig V

    I've noticed that a lot of what they say in these conversations is like that. They say stuff that's only meaningful to other Christians.
  • Lionino
    849
    Why would a rational God present us with the Bible - especially the Old Testament - as its book? I could go on, but it might become monotonous and repetitive.Ludwig V

    The thing about presuppositionalists is that they don't talk about religion or Jesus, they are only desirous of bullying into you that atheism is irrational and that agnosticism is impossible.
    What theists usually do is (try to) prove that God exists, and then go for the historical reasons why their religion is truer than Islam or Buddhism — which is always a stopping point, as the evidence surrounding Christianity is more detrimental than it is corroborative.
    Presuppositionalism is performative, not philosophical.

    Though aren't some experiences - "bad trips" - paranoid fantasies, which may be life-changing, but not in a good wayLudwig V

    Surely, some people even go crazy after taking LSD.

    Mainly because, as you say, they're ingenious. Quite a stunt to take reason (the skeptic's prized tool against 'superstition') and use the very possibility of rationality as proof for god. But they can also be monotonous and repetitive.Tom Storm

    Alex Malpass is a public figure and philosopher who has dealt with presups several times. There are a few articles of his that touch on the topic, on the presup tag of his website.
  • Tom Storm
    8.1k
    Alex Malpass is a public figure and philosopher who has dealt with presups several timesLionino

    :up: Yes, Malpass is good on this.
  • Tom Storm
    8.1k
    The puzzle that strikes me is why he thinks his approach might change the mind of an atheist.Ludwig V

    I've met a few people who were converted by this approach, so I suspect it works on some and for a while it was a refreshing change from Aquinas' five ways arguments and the like. Most start with a variation of Kant's transcendental argument for god. If you see a skilful practitioner in full flight, they are fun to watch. But like any skill, some are terrible at it and resort to a kind of bullying. I can see how they might get to a god, but getting to Jesus is much harder.
  • Lionino
    849
    When it comes to pressup and transcendental arguments, I have seen this reply:
    The problem is that transcendental arguments only work if you grant intelligibility on the front end because a transcendental argument is an argument for the necessary preconditions for the intelligibility of experience. But this presents a problem for him [the pressup], if he doesn’t grant intelligibility he can’t reason transcendentally but if he grants intelligibility he grants autonomous reasoning which is an implicit denial of his conception of the Christian worldview.

    Relevant and funny clip:

  • Tom Storm
    8.1k
    I have seen this reply:
    The problem is that transcendental arguments only work if you grant intelligibility on the front end because a transcendental argument is an argument for the necessary preconditions for the intelligibility of experience. But this presents a problem for him [the pressup], if he doesn’t grant intelligibility he can’t reason transcendentally but if he grants intelligibility he grants autonomous reasoning which is an implicit denial of his conception of the Christian worldview.
    Lionino

    I've heard variations of this too. A question for you. If God grants intelligibility and autonomous reasoning is possible, doesn't this just allow for the Christian notion of free will? I have heard one presup deal with this problem with - 'God is the necessary condition of intelligibility and guarantees reason on earth, but he allows humans to use reason for good or ill, via freewill.'

    Transcendental arguments might get someone to arrive at the god hypothesis, but getting to 'Jesus died for our sins' was always going to be an additional leap. There are also Muslim apologists who use presuppositional apologetics to 'prove' Islam.

    A related argument used by some preups is the evolutionary argument against naturalism.

    The conclusion of the evolutionary argument against naturalism is that if our cognitive faculties are a product of naturalistic evolution, there is no inherent guarantee that our beliefs are true. Natural selection may have shaped our cognitive abilities in a way that prioritizes survival and reproduction over the accurate perception of reality. (note Donald Hoffman makes the same argument to support his version of idealism)

    Alvin Plantinga, a leading exponent of the argument, suggests that if naturalism is true, it undermines its own validity. If our cognitive faculties are not reliable in providing true beliefs, then the naturalist's confidence in the truth of naturalism itself becomes suspect, as it relies on those very cognitive faculties. In other words, we need a transcendental source for truth.
  • AmadeusD
    1.3k
    Because,
    Happy to go over it again, but It probably doesn't actually mattter :sweat:AmadeusD
  • AmadeusD
    1.3k
    You are right insofar as one could know that Bob will become something, of which all one is aware of is that it is called ‘presidency’, and thusly one does not completely understand nor know what it means for Bob to become president (without knowing what presidency is).Bob Ross

    That's basically what I was getting at. The knowledge of what a President is just plum isn't required to have a justified belief one will become one. If it is also 'true' regardless of whether you know that, you'd be JTFing it all the way along. But that does necessarily mean knowledge and we're back to that old chestnut..

    AmadeusD was arguing, in their OP, that agnostic atheism is nonsensical (or irrational) because an analysis of the two words conjoined (i.e., agnostic + atheism) reveals that anyone subscribing to it claims no knowledge of whether gods exist while not believing it; and this argument rests on the assumption, or perhaps defended principle, that one must know what they believe—i.e., they must know X to believe X.Bob Ross

    I'm unsure if this is an elucidate for me or a description, for someone else, of my position.

    if the latter, that is not my position.
    My position is that 'agnostic atheism' makes full sense. Its merely an agnostic who does not believe in God, as opposed to one who does.
    Neither claim knowledge of God, and so there's no overlap or toe-treading.

    The issue with that, on the face of it, an Atheist retains the position that we can know - but have no evidence. The Agnostic rejects that.

    Best of luck, my friend!Bob Ross

    Appreciate it :)
  • Janus
    15.3k
    In a sense, yes. Though I'm not sure that "arbitrary" is the right world. I have an impression that the experiences seem to fit in to whatever religious/metaphysical framework the experiencer already has. Which is not to say that they may not change how the ideas are expressed and the aspects that are emphasized.Ludwig V

    I used the term 'arbitrary' to indicate that I think mystical and psychedelic experiences can be rationalized in terms of any religious/ metaphysical framework.

    That's certainly true. Though aren't some experiences - "bad trips" - paranoid fantasies, which may be life-changing, but not in a good way. That's why I say they have to be assessed, in the end, by their results in the ordinary world.Ludwig V

    My experience is that bad trips may either be indicative of underlying psychoses or be just due to existential anxieties. So, I have known many people who have taken many trips, but no one whose subsequent ongoing psychosis or extreme neurosis could be definitively attributed to the use of psychedelics. That said, I don't doubt that the use of psychedelics can in rare cases trigger incipient psychoses.
  • AmadeusD
    1.3k
    In that case what Bob and the kids "know" as "butterfly" are different things.Lionino

    I would agree, and I ..think.. this is probably hte issue I was esoterically wanting to highlight. They know its a 'butterfly'. But what does that mean Peabody? Heh.

    Your argument seem to be either that both parties have a mental content at all for the word "butterfly" regardless of whether those contents are alike, or that there is some essential property of "butterfly" you didn't specify that both parties know of regardless of the accidents (shape colour etc) of a butterfly.Lionino

    It relies on neither. Both Bob and the Dumb Children would be justified in seeing the Butterfly emerge and confidently proclaim "That's a butterfly!" additionally,. they would both be correct - and this is as a result of their wildly divergent 'knowledge' of a butterfly.

    By the mental content of butterfly to Bob, that would be redundant.Lionino

    Not in the case that Bob is declaring it a butterfly. It really, truly matters that his knowledge, despite diverging from say yours or the Dumb Kid's, correctly has him identifying the butterfly in question. As to pre-visual confirmation... yeah, i'd agree. That is what a butterfly is for Bob. But knowledge is redundant in that case... It's not verified, exchanged, understood or anything else.

    "Bob will become ∅"Lionino

    But the proposition, in either case IS "Bob will become President". The empty concept is not really relevant. Bob will (lets say you also know this..), in 38 days, become President.

    In 39 days you can, with justification, claim that Bob is now president. But you don't know much, if anything, about it. I'm just not sure what hte issue is here.. I agree with all the daylight you're identifying existing between these notions. But they all converge, correctly, in certain claims.
  • Janus
    15.3k
    I wasn't asking you to "go over it again" but to provide an actual argument. If you don't want to do that, that's fine... I don't care.
  • AmadeusD
    1.3k
    Then, you'll want to have just asked, rather than make cryptic, slightly underhanded comments about my utterances (as such).

    If that's not how you'd characterize this, and the previous comment, let me know directly and boldly as i'll take it into account going forward. People communicate differently..

    In my immediate defense, citing that atheist institutions reject that formulation is, to me, an argument. In this case, appeal to authority seems quite apt ;)

    In any case, to re-iterate, this is how, on my account, these words work:

    Theism: Theism, yes, I have evidence and so believe.
    Atheism: Theism, Maybe, but i'm not convinced so do not believe.
    Anti-theist: Theism, No. I have evidence against.
    Agnostic: Theism, Maybe, and I cannot have evidence
    AmadeusD

    I then suggested this, below, set as a way of fixing the apparent problems people are having using words with obvious etymologically-sound uses as it seems the above set cannot apply to deism without becoming convoluted and half-arsed.

    Word 1: Deism, Yes. I have evidence
    Word 2: Deism, No. Have evidence against
    Word 3: Deism, Maybe and I believe I can know.
    Word 4: Deism, cannot know.

    I don't really understand the above to be an argument, per se, but I would defend those definitions and did so for pages before and after the post these two sets came from.
  • Tom Storm
    8.1k
    Interesting. Do you get deism? I may be missing something but it seems a banal position. "Yes, I think there is a creator, but we have no knowledge of this being and it has taken no interest in us, so all we can say is..." Deism seems like a soft-core response to the argument from contingency. What is the point of it?
  • Ludwig V
    663
    I can see how they might get to a god, but getting to Jesus is much harder.Tom Storm
    Quite so. But Tertullian already co-opted that problem. "I believe because it is unbelievable."

    I've met a few people who were converted by this approach, so I suspect it works on some and for a while it was a refreshing change from Aquinas' five ways arguments and the like. ........ But this presents a problem for him [the pressup], if he doesn’t grant intelligibility he can’t reason transcendentally but if he grants intelligibility he grants autonomous reasoningTom Storm
    Well, all sorts of tactics work - even the traditional approach of standing up and informing the audience that they are all sinners! Actually, this latches on to any private guilt that we might harbour (which I'm sure happens in any social system) and exploits it. Genius!
    I'm prepared to believe that even Tertullian's approach might work sometimes.
    Which goes to show that conversion is not just a matter of reason. Rationality may creep in after the event, but it doesn't set it off.

    'God is the necessary condition of intelligibility and guarantees reason on earth, but he allows humans to use reason for good or ill, via freewill.'Tom Storm
    That's very odd. Reason is supposed to guarantee the truth of its conclusions. The truth might be used for good or ill, but that's not the fault of reason, is it?

    There are also Muslim apologists who use presuppositional apologetics to 'prove' Islam.Tom Storm
    It might work better for Islam and Judaism. Though there would still be an awkward gap about proving that the Book in each case was the Word of God.

    Relevant and funny clip:Lionino
    Quite so. If I were still teaching, I would use this to show how philosophy should not be conducted and how to ensure that a dialogue is unproductive. One must put one's own view at risk, or nothing will be gained.
  • Ludwig V
    663
    The conclusion of the evolutionary argument against naturalism is that if our cognitive faculties are a product of naturalistic evolution, there is no inherent guarantee that our beliefs are true. Natural selection may have shaped our cognitive abilities in a way that prioritizes survival and reproduction over the accurate perception of reality. (note Donald Hoffman makes the same argument to support his version of idealism)Tom Storm
    This is an interesting argument. Another attempt to co-opt and transform a familiar sceptical/atheist position. But if natural selection is to prioritize survival, it needs to promote accurate perception of reality. Call me cynical, but the same does not necessarily apply to reproduction, which, arguably, often works quite well on the basis of misperceptions and misunderstandings.

    If our cognitive faculties are not reliable in providing true beliefs, then the naturalist's confidence in the truth of naturalism itself becomes suspect, as it relies on those very cognitive faculties. In other words, we need a transcendental source for truth.Tom Storm
    The real flaw here is the presupposition that either our cognitive faculties (all of them) are accurate or they (all of them) are not. The awkward truth is that sometimes they are and some of them are not. We learn which is which through the feed-back loop (doing and being in the world) - and we never need to stop learning.
  • wonderer1
    1.5k
    The real flaw here is the presupposition that either our cognitive faculties (all of them) are accurate or they (all of them) are not. The awkward truth is that sometimes they are and some of them are not. We learn which is which through the feed-back loop (doing and being in the world) - and we never need to stop learning.Ludwig V

    :100:
  • Ludwig V
    663
    I used the term 'arbitrary' to indicate that I think mystical and psychedelic experiences can be rationalized in terms of any religious/ metaphysical framework.Janus
    Fair enough.

    My experience is that bad trips may either be indicative of underlying psychoses or be just due to existential anxieties. So, I have known many people who have taken many trips, but no one whose subsequent ongoing psychosis or extreme neurosis could be definitively attributed to the use of psychedelics. That said, I don't doubt that the use of psychedelics can in rare cases trigger incipient psychoses.Janus
    That may be true. I only wanted to say that what happens after you swallow the pill is not determined. It depends on you (not in the sense that you are responsible for it or in control of it!) and your circumstances. From what I've read and heard, having an experienced guide with you makes a big difference, at least at the beginning. It goes back to the beginnings in the '50's. The "aristocrats" emphasized the need for a guide, the "democrats" insisted it was for everyone. The aristocrats were probably guilty of snobbery and elitism, but they were right about the guide - as the psychiatrists seem to be demonstrating nowadays.
  • wonderer1
    1.5k
    That may be true. I only wanted to say that what happens after you swallow the pill is not determined. It depends on you (not in the sense that you are responsible for it or in control of it!) and your circumstances. From what I've read and heard, having an experienced guide with you makes a big difference, at least at the beginning. It goes back to the beginnings in the '50's. The "aristocrats" emphasized the need for a guide, the "democrats" insisted it was for everyone. The aristocrats were probably guilty of snobbery and elitism, but they were right about the guide - as the psychiatrists seem to be demonstrating nowadays.Ludwig V

    I've never had a bad trip, but I did trip one time with someone who did, and it can be a very bad situation. The bad trip this guy had was very much a result of him being someone whose psychology was fairly fucked up to begin with, and I wasn't a guide so much as someone too young and ignorant to recognize the potential for things to go really bad for this guy. That was a long scary night of continually talking this guy down.

    My opinion is that adult supervision is highly highly recommended.
  • Lionino
    849
    "Yes, I think there is a creator, but we have no knowledge of this being and it has taken no interest in us, so all we can say is..."Tom Storm

    I think that would be epicureanism, yes? Gods exist but they don't care and can't bother.
    Non-religious theism is just... theism without any dogma.

    Transcendental arguments might get someone to arrive at the god hypothesis, but getting to 'Jesus died for our sins' was always going to be an additional leap. There are also Muslim apologists who use presuppositional apologetics to 'prove' Islam.Tom Storm

    Surely. I even talked about it here:

    usually do is (try to) prove that God exists, and then go for the historical reasons why their religion is truer than Islam or Buddhism — which is always a stopping point, as the evidence surrounding Christianity is more detrimental than it is corroborative.Lionino

    Natural selection may have shaped our cognitive abilities in a way that prioritizes survival and reproduction over the accurate perception of reality.Tom Storm

    True, and perhaps what prioritises survival is the accurate perception —a pragmatic theory of truth. As in, things are true because the group with that belief F survived and the group with belief D died out.

    'God is the necessary condition of intelligibility and guarantees reason on earth, but he allows humans to use reason for good or ill, via freewill.'Tom Storm

    If God grants intelligibility and autonomous reasoning is possible, doesn't this just allow for the Christian notion of free will? I have heard one presup deal with this problem with - 'God is the necessary condition of intelligibility and guarantees reason on earth, but he allows humans to use reason for good or ill, via freewill.'Tom Storm

    You can have a guarantee of intelligibility that is not a God. In any case, I am far from being experienced with presupism, that is something that I will only engage with later.

    Alvin Plantinga, a leading exponent of the argument, suggests that if naturalism is true, it undermines its own validity.Tom Storm

    Ah, Platinga. Platinga, Kalam, Ehrman.
  • AmadeusD
    1.3k
    Do you get deism? I may be missing something but it seems a banal position. "Yes, I think there is a creator, but we have no knowledge of this being and it has taken no interest in us, so all we can say is..." Deism seems like a soft-core response to the argument from contingency. What is the point of it?Tom Storm

    My understanding - which may be incomplete or not well-aligned with actual Deists claims - is that Deism is basically just Theism, but an impersonal God (of nature, the universe, 'Love' or whatever). I don't think it, as a term, indicates whether someone is pro- anti- or 'agnostic'.
    My issue was that an 'agnostic Deist' is incoherent, as a Deist believes we can discover God in nature.. This necessarily precludes 'agnostic' as a type of Deism. Agnostics reject that we can discover/know of/about God. In fact, I think the main discussion here where I've gone over these positions was someone claiming to be an agnostic Deist. It made no sense - so I had to conclude the gentleman was a Deist - he got stuck on that, where I was actually trying to illustrate the inadequacy of the terms - hence, suggesting that set in the comment you quoted so solve the 'agnostic Deist' problem.
  • Tom Storm
    8.1k
    :up: My issue with deism is that if all we have is an inferential relationship with some creator with whom we have no relationship and who asks nothing of us, why care? It seems functionally no different to living without a god. Some being created the world and fucked off… it leaves us with nothing to do but get on with it.

    It also interests me that among the former Christians I’ve met who are now atheists, the journey is often: Christian to deist to atheist. It’s like deism is the faded remnant of theism that can be readily discarded. One goes from wheelchair to walking stick to walking unaided - if you’ll forgive the vulgar secular bias.
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