• Isaac
    714
    And if one class IS empty...that would be a fact rather than an opinion.Frank Apisa

    Well, by my definition of 'fact' it would, yes, but that's not what the OP appears to be talking about. They appear to be defining 'fact' rather idiosyncraticaly as something more like proposition. By that definition, if one class were empty would be irrelevant, but if someone were to claim one class were empty, that would be an opinion, apparently.

    The reason I made the comment you're responding to is really to try and break apart issues caused by definition from issues related to metaphysical commitments.

    For me (and I think most of us) facts are states of affairs, they are the subject/object of propositions, not the proposition itself, so the idea that facts are opinions by this definition is basically solipsism.

    If, on the other hand, the underlying metaphysical position here is one of Pyrrhonic skepticism, hen that's something I have a degree more sympathy for.
  • YuZhonglu
    218


    What I'm trying to say is that the difference between an opinion and a fact depends on the feeling of certainty attached to the concept, as both opinions and facts are merely the products of neurological activity.
  • Frank Apisa
    896
    Isaac
    566

    And if one class IS empty...that would be a fact rather than an opinion. — Frank Apisa


    Well, by my definition of 'fact' it would, yes, but that's not what the OP appears to be talking about. They appear to be defining 'fact' rather idiosyncraticaly as something more like proposition. By that definition, if one class were empty would be irrelevant, but if someone were to claim one class were empty, that would be an opinion, apparently.

    The reason I made the comment you're responding to is really to try and break apart issues caused by definition from issues related to metaphysical commitments.

    For me (and I think most of us) facts are states of affairs, they are the subject/object of propositions, not the proposition itself, so the idea that facts are opinions by this definition is basically solipsism.

    If, on the other hand, the underlying metaphysical position here is one of Pyrrhonic skepticism, hen that's something I have a degree more sympathy for.
    Isaac

    I agree with you.

    My agreement was the point of what I said.
  • leo
    364


    You don't have to stick to the concept of neurological activity though, which itself stems from experiences you have had. You could say that all we have are experiences, that we can't know for sure what experiences others have, so fundamentally all we talk about is based on our subjective experiential point of view, rather than on the point of view of some omniscient being who could see what everyone experiences and could experience.
  • YuZhonglu
    218
    I agree, but it's not the direction I'm going. The direction I'm aiming for is the idea that anytime we talk about something, we're actually discussing our own memories. When we claim "X is a fact" we're implying that:

    1. I have a memory of X.
    2. This memory is accurate.
    3. Others should agree with me on this claim.

    In other words, we're not actually talking about X itself. Instead, we're discussing our interpretations of X, generated by the physical processes of our brains.
  • whollyrolling
    412


    You don't appear to understand metaphor or colloquialism, so let me explain. I didn't mean that all humans are convinced that the universe literally circles around an axis literally at the location of their brain. My intent was to play on a colloquialism, something that I assumed everyone was aware of, "you think (everything, the world, the universe, etc.) revolves around you".

    It is a basic primary instinct to act to preserve the self, though it's not unconditional. It is tertiary, and I don't believe instinctive but optional and often very difficult, to act to preserve the species.
  • NKBJ
    1.1k
    My intent was to play on a colloquialism, something that I assumed everyone was aware of, "you think (everything, the world, the universe, etc.) revolves around you".whollyrolling

    I understand the colloquialism. But in the context of this specific thread, it takes on new meaning. Unless, of course, you're just blabbing and not actually contributing to the conversation?

    It is a basic primary instinct to act to preserve the self, though it's not unconditional. It is tertiary, and I don't believe instinctive but optional and often very difficult, to act to preserve the species.whollyrolling

    You're clearly not a mother.
  • S
    10.2k
    Give me an example.Janus

    It wouldn't be the first time I've given examples of this. It's true that Spain borders France, that one plus one equals two, and that Earth orbits the Sun. They're objective truths. They don't depend on me or my judgement or thoughts or feelings or anything like that, nor on anyone else or their judgement or thoughts or feelings or anything like that. You can interpret the meaning of moral statements, such as that abortion is wrong, in the same way, but I don't accept that there's an objective truthmaker in the sense I just described, and I find it very counterintuitive to end up with the logical consequence that no moral statement is true, so I opt for moral relativism. Moreover, your community defined ethics leads to problems you have been unable to resolve, so that rules that one out. And I'm tired of trying to go over that with you, because your response has been unsatisfactory each time I've tried: either handwaving or completely ignoring it. And I'm also tired of hearing your excuses for this, predictably blaming it on me instead of taking responsibility.
  • whollyrolling
    412


    What does being a mother have to do with this?

    I'm addressing the topic at hand and the resulting dialogue within the thread. Claiming someone is "blabbing" is not contributing to the conversation, it's just ad hominem nonsense intended to discredit what is misunderstood. Whether or not someone is self-centred pertains directly to a conversation about opinion vs. fact. So does free will. So does the nature of consciousness. So does instinct.
  • S
    10.2k
    You don't need so much text to make the simple and uninteresting point that you're now redefining "fact" as memory. It's still problematic in the bigger picture, and it will continue to be so unless you conform with what the word ordinarily means. You're headed up river without a paddle. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
  • NKBJ
    1.1k
    What does being a mother have to do with this?whollyrolling

    Then you'd know that self-preservation is only one of the primal instincts. Protecting another or others can (for parents) be just as primal and instinctual, if not more.
  • NKBJ
    1.1k
    Claiming someone is "blabbing" is not contributing to the conversation, it's just ad hominem nonsense intended to discredit what is misunderstood.whollyrolling

    It's not an ad hominem, since I've said nothing about you as a person. I also didn't claim you are blabbing. I stated it as a hypothetical possibility contingent on the purpose and content of your words.
  • YuZhonglu
    218


    All basic primary instincts are a function of biology and can be modified once people finally begin to understand how the brain works. Just because something is "basic" doesn't mean it can't be changed.
  • YuZhonglu
    218
    But it is interesting, to many others, because philosophy is little more than neuroscience but without the science or the tools.
  • whollyrolling
    412


    Then why do so many mothers across species abandon their injured offspring to die, and why do so many mothers across species attempt to injure or otherwise set back each other's offspring, and why is legal support for abortion and assisted suicide increasing as the number of mothers involved in legislation increases?

    Being a mother isn't some qualifier for higher knowledge, that's absurd.

    Protecting others is never "instinctive" if we're going to suggest that "instinct" entails virtually irresistible biological compulsion as opposed to rational decision making. In the immediate or short term, protection is a choice prompted by rapidly occurring chemical and energetic processes within the body, and in both short and long term it involves a variety of both learned and genetic psychological influences. These processes don't necessarily result in protection of another. They often result in a decision to flee rather than to fight.

    I personally believe that every behavior is a result of automation and that there's no free will, but this isn't what consciousness perceives, and I don't believe it's beneficial to resign to it in practice.
  • whollyrolling
    412


    "Blabbing" implies incoherence or idleness or superfluity or that what a person is saying doesn't qualify as worthwhile. Your lack of understanding doesn't qualify or disqualify my commentary.
  • S
    10.2k
    But it is interesting, to many others, because philosophy is little more than neuroscience but without the science or the tools.YuZhonglu

    You didn't seem very interested when I gave you my definition of "horse" and validly drew a few logical consequences.

    You're doing the same thing with "fact".
  • YuZhonglu
    218
    Technically you're not responding to what I wrote. You're actually responding to a memory of what you believe I wrote.
  • S
    10.2k
    Technically you're not responding to what I wrote. You're actually responding to a memory of what you believe I wrote.YuZhonglu

    No, I'm responding to what you wrote.

    This is what you wrote:

    But it is interesting, to many others, because philosophy is little more than neuroscience but without the science or the tools.YuZhonglu

    And this is my response:

    You didn't seem very interested when I gave you my definition of "horse" and validly drew a few logical consequences.

    You're doing the same thing with "fact".
    S
  • YuZhonglu
    218
    In order to respond, your brain had to interpret and remember the visual input coming in from your retina. Then, based on this interpretation, neurons in the brain send signals back to the muscles in your fingers to respond. In other words, as you typed this, sections of your brain are responding to input and stimuli from OTHER sections of your brain. Technically you're not responding to me. You're actually responding to your own brain.

    The same applies to me, too, of course. It's an insanely complex process.
  • christian2017
    295


    n order to respond, your brain had to interpret and remember the visual input coming in from your retina. Then, based on this interpretation, neurons in the brain send signals back to the muscles in your fingers to respond. In other words, as you typed this, sections of your brain are responding to input and stimuli from OTHER sections of your brain.

    The same applies to me, too, of course.
    YuZhonglu

    Are these facts or opinons. I'm pointing at myself right now. That is a fact not an opinion. After i finally got my head screwed on straight i agree with everyone else.
  • S
    10.2k
    In order to respond, your brain had to interpret and remember the visual input coming in from your retina. Then, based on this interpretation, neurons in the brain send signals back to the muscles in your fingers to respond. In other words, as you typed this, sections of your brain are responding to input and stimuli from OTHER sections of your brain.

    The same applies to me, too, of course.
    YuZhonglu

    So what? Describing in detail how I responded to what you wrote doesn't do anything, logically.
  • YuZhonglu
    218
    It means every so-called "fact" that any human has ever learned or thought about is the product of neuronal activity. If there are no brains, then there will also be no "facts."

    If humans disappeared, the Earth might still revolve around the Sun. But there would be no "facts" regarding this phenomenon. "Facts," as people understand them, do not exist independent of the mind that created it.

    EDIT: This has significance because when two people look at the Sun, they're not seeing the same "Sun." Similarly, when two people react to a post, they're not reacting to the "same" post.
  • christian2017
    295


    It means every so-called "fact" that any human has ever learned or thought about is the product of neuronal activity. If there are no brains, then there will also be no "facts."

    If humans disappeared, the Earth might still revolve around the Sun. But there would be no "facts" regarding this phenomenon. "Facts," as people understand them, do not exist independent of the mind that created it.

    EDIT: This has significance because when two people look at the Sun, they're not seeing the same "Sun." Similarly, when two people react to a post, they're not reacting to the "same" post.
    YuZhonglu

    this is a whole another forum topic. What if there are aliens or what if some other species evloves that can talk? What if some parrot says that your wrong YuZhonglu?
  • YuZhonglu
    218
    Then they would have their "facts," but these "facts" would not be comprehensible to us. When I talk about "facts" I mean "human facts."
  • christian2017
    295
    Then they would have their "facts," but these "facts" would not be comprehensible to us. When I talk about "facts" I mean "human facts."YuZhonglu

    ok
  • NKBJ
    1.1k
    Being a mother isn't some qualifier for higher knowledge, that's absurd.whollyrolling

    All sane parents know what I said is true.
    Some non-parents don't know it (including you).

    Your examples are beyond ridiculous.
  • NKBJ
    1.1k
    Blabbing" implies incoherence or idleness or superfluity or that what a person is saying doesn't qualify as worthwhile. Your lack of understanding doesn't qualify or disqualify my commentary.whollyrolling

    Your lack of coherence doesn't make a good case for you not babbling.
  • NKBJ
    1.1k
    All basic primary instincts are a function of biology and can be modified once people finally begin to understand how the brain works. Just because something is "basic" doesn't mean it can't be changed.YuZhonglu

    I think that's possible in some cases, although not desireable in all. Parental nurturing instincts are a good thing. We should both aim to understand and foster such good inclinations.
  • YuZhonglu
    218
    In other words: your brain isn't observing facts. Your brain is creating them.
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