• Terrapin Station
    6.7k


    I said, "different than some conventional usages, although of course you don't have to care about that."

    You said, "And I do have to care about that if I ever hope to have coherent communication with others"

    The contextual implication there is that if you ever hope to have coherent communication with others, you need to be concerned with, if not use, the conventional definitions of terms.

    To which I responded, "When we use highly idiosyncratic definitions we can simply define them for others."

    So in other words, one can use a highly idiosyncratic definition ("highly" as in perhaps one is the only person to use the definition in question), if one simply makes the definition explicit. I was merely addressing the logical implication of "I do have to care about that if I ever hope to have coherent communication with others"

    Regarding how I use subjective and objective, which isn't that unusual, I simply use them so that "subjective" refers to mental phenomena (that is, that subset of brain phenomena that is mental phenomena), and "objective" refers to everything extant that's not mental phenomena. (I've given those definitions on the board quite a few times, so apologies to folks to whom I'm repeating myself yet agin.)
  • Harry Hindu
    1.7k
    Regarding how I use subjective and objective, which isn't that unusual, I simply use them so that "subjective" refers to mental phenomena (that is, that subset of brain phenomena that is mental phenomena), and "objective" refers to everything extant that's not mental phenomena. (I've given those definitions on the board quite a few times, so apologies to folks to whom I'm repeating myself yet agin.)Terrapin Station
    That really isn't much different than my usage, or the common usages of those terms. I emphasized the parts that are similar, if not the same, as how we are using them, so I really don't see what the big deal is.
    SUBJECTIVE
    1 : of, relating to, or constituting a subject: such as

    a obsolete : of, relating to, or characteristic of one that is a subject especially in lack of freedom of action or in submissiveness

    b : being or relating to a grammatical subject especially : nominative

    2 : of or relating to the essential being of that which has substance, qualities, attributes, or relations

    3a : characteristic of or belonging to reality as perceived rather than as independent of mind : phenomenal — compare objective sense 1b

    b : relating to or being experience or knowledge as conditioned by personal mental characteristics or states

    4a(1) : peculiar to a particular individual : personal subjective judgments

    (2) : modified or affected by personal views, experience, or background

    b : arising from conditions within the brain or sense organs and not directly caused by external stimuli

    c : arising out of or identified by means of one's perception of one's own states and processes — compare objective sense 1c

    5 : lacking in reality or substance : illusory



    OBJECTIVE
    1a : relating to or existing as an object of thought without consideration of independent existence —used chiefly in medieval philosophy

    b : of, relating to, or being an object, phenomenon, or condition in the realm of sensible experience independent of individual thought and perceptible by all observers : having reality independent of the mind objective reality — compare subjective sense 3a

    c of a symptom of disease : perceptible to persons other than the affected individual objective arthritis — compare subjective sense 4c

    d : involving or deriving from sense perception or experience with actual objects, conditions, or phenomena

    2 : relating to, characteristic of, or constituting the case of words that follow prepositions or transitive verbs

    3a : expressing or dealing with facts or conditions as perceived without distortion by personal feelings, prejudices, or interpretations

    b of a test : limited to choices of fixed alternatives and reducing subjective factors to a minimum
    — Merriam-Webster
  • Terrapin Station
    6.7k
    I really don't see what the big deal is.Harry Hindu

    It's not a big deal. I just became curious because you were using the terms in a way that I wouldn't use them. I'd never say that subjectivity is a subset of objectivity for example. I'm not criticizing the way you're using the terms, so you do not need to keep defending it.
  • Harry Hindu
    1.7k
    I just became curious because you were using the terms in a way that I wouldn't use them. I'd never say that subjectivity is a subset of objectivity for example.Terrapin Station
    Didn't I just say that your usage isn't much different than my, or the common usage of these terms? Doesn't that mean that you do use those terms in that way?

    Just look at what you said:
    Regarding how I use subjective and objective, which isn't that unusual, I simply use them so that "subjective" refers to mental phenomena (that is, that subset of brain phenomena that is mental phenomena), and "objective" refers to everything extant that's not mental phenomena. (I've given those definitions on the board quite a few times, so apologies to folks to whom I'm repeating myself yet agin.)Terrapin Station

    You said that mental phenomena is subjective and is a subset of brain phenomena. Brain phenomena qualifies as being part of everything that's not mental phenomena (objective). Mental phenomena is a subset of brain phenomena, so subjectivity is a subset of objectivity.
  • Terrapin Station
    6.7k
    Brain phenomena qualifies as being part of everything that's not mental phenomena (objective).Harry Hindu

    Re the way I use the terms, the subset of brain phenomena that have the property of mentality is NOT objective. I use the terms so that they're necessarily mutually exclusive. I use the terms so that all you have to ask is, "Is this a mental phenomenon?" If the answer is "Yes," then necessarily it's subjective and not objective. If the answer is "No," then necessarily it's objective and not subjective.

    The way I'm using the terms is similar to this:

    "'Shmagel' refers to any loose rocks on a mountain with a summit 4,000 or more feet. 'Plagel' refers to everything else in the world, including all rocks everywhere else (including on lower mountains), and including every part of any mountain that's not a loose rock."

    If you think of the terms in that vein, just two sounds to (a) pick out a particular sort of thing versus (b) everything else, then my usage should be clearer to you.
  • Harry Hindu
    1.7k
    the way I use the terms, the subset of brain phenomena that have the property of mentality is NOT objective.Terrapin Station
    That isnt what I implied that you said.

    You stated that mental phenomena is subjective. What is brain phenomena? Objective or subjective?
  • Terrapin Station
    6.7k


    So see what I said right after that above:

    I use the terms so that all you have to ask is, "Is this a mental phenomenon?" If the answer is "Yes," then necessarily it's subjective and not objective. If the answer is "No," then necessarily it's objective and not subjective.

    So re the brain phenomenon in question. Ask the question, "Is this a mental phenomenon?" If the answer is "yes," then the brain phenomenon in question is subjective (and necessarily not objective).

    If the answer is "no," then the brain phenomenon in question is objective (and necessarily not subjective).

    So let's take a couple examples.

    Phenomenon a, which is the brain state (that is, particular parts of the brain being in particular states) of being an idea. Ideas are mental, thus that state is subjective (and necessarily not objective)..

    Phenomenon b, which is the brain state that helps regulate our respiration. That is autonomic and not mental. Thus that state is objective (and necessarily not subjective).
  • DingoJones
    462
    Phenomenon b, which is the brain state that helps regulate our respiration. That is autonomic and not mental. Thus that state is objective (and necessarily not subjective).Terrapin Station

    “Automatic and not mental” doesnt seem accurate here. What is the difference between the brain states that makes one “mental” and the other not? Are you going to say its about consciousness, or simply being aware of the brain state? Presumably you intend that anything one has knowledge of is “mental” and that which we do not have knowledge of (regardless of it being a brain state of a kind as well) is not “mental”. Is that right?
  • Terrapin Station
    6.7k
    Presumably you intend that anything one has knowledge of is “mental” and that which we do not have knowledge of (regardless of it being a brain state of a kind as well) is not “mental”. Is that right?DingoJones

    That part is definitely not right. That seems to be taking me for an idealist (at least an epistemological idealist). And I'm not at all an idealist. I'm a direct realist.

    And yeah, the difference is awareness/consciousness (where I'll add that I'm not actually categorically ruling out unconscious mentality, but I don't believe there is any good support for anything amounting to phenomena that are just like mental phenomena, only we aren't (first-person) aware of the phenomena in question).

    Also the word is autonomic, not automatic. Here's a definition of autonomic:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autonomic_nervous_system

    Within the brain, the autonomic nervous system is regulated by the hypothalamus. Autonomic functions include control of respiration, cardiac regulation (the cardiac control center), vasomotor activity (the vasomotor center), and certain reflex actions such as coughing, sneezing, swallowing and vomiting. Those are then subdivided into other areas and are also linked to ANS subsystems and nervous systems external to the brain. The hypothalamus, just above the brain stem, acts as an integrator for autonomic functions, receiving ANS regulatory input from the limbic system to do so.[3]
  • DingoJones
    462


    Ah, I see. I misread that. Ok, I understand.
  • Harry Hindu
    1.7k
    So see what I said right after that above:Terrapin Station
    But what you said after that - the part I quoted - you said that mental phenomena are a subset of brain phenomena. A subset is part of a larger group of similar things, not opposite things. Your subjective is subset of the objective. Either that, or mental phenomena are not subsets of brain phenomena.
  • Terrapin Station
    6.7k


    Not all brain phenomena have identical properties.

    Some have property M. Some do not have that property.

    The brain phenomena with property M are "subjective" but not "objective."

    The brain phenomena without property M are "objective" but not "subjective."

    The terms are simply another way of saying whether something has property M.
  • Harry Hindu
    1.7k
    Not all brain phenomena have identical properties.Terrapin Station
    They have at least one identical property. They are brain phenomena. Why can't you either admit that you are wrong in saying that mental phenomenon is subset of brain phenomena or that you were wrong is saying subjective is not a subset of the objective? When you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.

    Set M is a subset of a set B, or equivalently B is a superset of M, if M is "contained" inside B, that is, all elements of M are also elements of B. If that isn't what you are saying then its not just objective and subjective that you have idiosyncratic definitions for, you also have an idiosyncratic definition of "subset".
  • Terrapin Station
    6.7k


    Yes, they all have the property of being brain phenomena. Brain phenomena with the property of being mental is a subset, and "brain phenomena" is a superset that includes the subset of brain phenomena that has the property of being mental.

    "Objective," however, in my usage, does NOT refer to "brain phenomena." Objective refers to things that do not have the property of being mental. So subjective stuff, in my usage, isn't a subset of objective stuff. I'm stipulating this. So it's not something I can get wrong. I'm telling you something about the way I use words. You can use the words differently. It's fine if you do.

    There's no way in Hell I'd ever try to discuss anything more complex with you by the way, given the absurd difficulty we're having with something so simple and stupid.
  • Harry Hindu
    1.7k
    There's no way in Hell I'd ever try to discuss anything more complex with you by the way, given the absurd difficulty we're having with something so simple and stupid.Terrapin Station
    You're right. It is stupid. All because you couldn't answer a simple question several posts ago:
    What is brain phenomena? Objective or subjective?Harry Hindu

    You beat around the bush, performing all these mental gymnastics before you finally, just now, answered the question:
    "Objective," however, in my usage, does NOT refer to "brain phenomena.Terrapin Station
    Finally!

    Yes, they all have the property of being brain phenomena. Brain phenomena with the property of being mental is a subset, and "brain phenomena" is a superset that includes the subset of brain phenomena that has the property of being mental.Terrapin Station

    Objective refers to things that do not have the property of being mental. So subjective stuff, in my usage, isn't a subset of objective stuff. I'm stipulating this. So it's not something I can get wrong. I'm telling you something about the way I use words. You can use the words differently. It's fine if you do.Terrapin Station

    So basically you're logically inconsistent, but that isn't considered "wrong" in your dictionary. You have a problem.
  • Terrapin Station
    6.7k


    What's inconsistent there in your view?
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