• Philosophim
    1.2k
    I finally think I see what you have been trying to tell me about "potential". I knew you saw something there that I was unable to grasp, but I think I at last understand what it is.

    The point I am trying to make is that "irrational induction" is not just what is contradicted by direct experience but, rather, it is also about whether it is contradicted in the abstract.Bob Ross

    Yes, I think this works nicely! I think potentiality nicely describes process of creating the useful distinctive knowledge we come up with. Anything which we come up with in our minds that contradicts our other distinctive knowledge, could be said to lack "potential". As long as potential is not used, or is clarified into something like "applicable potential" when being applied to reality, I think we have a clearly defined word that does not have a synonym, and can be applicably known. Do I have the right of it? Feel free to clarify further, but I think I'm seeing the spark you've been thinking about.

    Your analysis of the hierarchy is spot on. This is what I've been trying to communicate for a while as well. A great breakdown and example!

    At first, I thought I could utilize the sheer quantity to determine the cogencies with respect to one another. I was wrong, it gets trickier than that because the components themselves are also subject to an induction hierarchy within themselves.Bob Ross

    Correct.

    [horses, horns] - evolution -> unicorn: (horned {possible characteristic} horse)
    [horses, horns] - evolution -> unicorn: (horned {ditto} horse, invisibility {plausible characteristic} capabilities)

    Therefore, #1 is more cogent than #2, not due to the sheer consideration of quantities of components, but the quantity in relation to an induction hierarchy within the component itself. In other words, a plausibility that has one component which is based off of a possible characteristic is more cogent (doesn't mean it is cogent) than one that has component which is based off of a plausible characteristic.
    Bob Ross

    Perfect! Yes, this is the conclusion I was hoping you would reach. Its not necessarily quantity we even have to consider. Its just that we have to consider all the essential properties of the grounding inductions (Good phrase!) that build up that induction. Each must be considered within the hierarchy as well. So if you conclude that an induction is built up of two essential properties, one having a direct grounds off of applicable knowledge, while the other has grounds on plausibilities, you can rationally reject the second essential property, but keep the first.

    However, it isn't just about the relation to an induction hierarchy within the component itself: it is also about the quantity, but the quantity is always second (subordinate) to the consideration of the relation.Bob Ross

    You are right on target. Another way to think about it is a chain is built of links. But each link has a chain as well. When I state, distinctive knowledge -> possibility -> plausibility, the chain of reasoning also applies to each base. How did I arrive at that distinctive knowledge? How did I arrive at that possibility? I think you have it.

    I hope that serves as a basic exposition into what I mean by "comparing plausibilities".Bob Ross

    Yes, this is clear, and always what I intended, but did not communicate clearly. When I spoke that you could not compare plausibilities directly, I meant that you could not do so without analyzing the chain of reasoning behind them. But I never described sub chains directly like you did. You have written this much clearer and with greater focus than I have, and it is a wonderful and excellent break down!
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    Yes, I think this works nicely! I think potentiality nicely describes process of creating the useful distinctive knowledge we come up with. Anything which we come up with in our minds that contradicts our other distinctive knowledge, could be said to lack "potential".

    Yes, I think we are on the same page now!

    So if you conclude that an induction is built up of two essential properties, one having a direct grounds off of applicable knowledge, while the other has grounds on plausibilities, you can rationally reject the second essential property, but keep the first.

    I agree. But I suspect that you are only referring to the comparison of plausibilities that relate to one another, so I would like to explicitly state that I am claiming that one can compare all plausibilities to one another in this manner. When comparing to completely unrelated plausibilities, it isn't a matter of choosing which one you should hold: it is about which one is stronger, more sure of. I am not entirely sure if you would agree with me on that.

    In light of our recent agreements, I think it is safe for me to move on and explicate some of my other thoughts on your epistemology:

    Actual Infinities Are Irrational

    I think that, in light of us agreement on potentiality, we can finally prove that actual infinites are irrational inductions. To keep it brief, we can abstractly prove that actual infinites contradict logic: a great example of this is the infinite hotel problem (thought experiment). Therefore, since they contradict logic in the abstract, they lack potentiality. If they lack potentiality, then they are an irrational induction. Therefore, if any induction invokes such a principle, it must be an irrational induction unless the induction can safely separate itself from any actual infinite claims it is actively utilizing. For example, if I say it is possible for an apple to exist in all of time and space, I am holding a legitimate possibility induction because I am utilizing a potential infinite, which has limits (in this case, the limits are space/time itself). However, if I say it is possible for an apple to exist within everything (where everything has no limits), then I am holding an irrational induction because actual infinites have no potential. Therefore, I think that your epistemology quite nicely dictates that our inductions can only be rational, in any sense of the term, if it utilizes limits (which encompasses potential infinites). I think, as you may already be inferring, that this actually have heavy implications with respect to your idea of a "first cause", but I will refrain as I will not continue down that alleyway unless you want me to.

    Mathematical Inductions Are Possibilities

    I know we had a lot of disputes about mathematical inductions, and so I wanted to briefly continue that conversation with the idea that mathematical inductions do not require another term, contrary to what I was claiming, because they are possibilities. If I say that F(N) works for all integers, N, I am utilizing my distinctive knowledge to claim that it will hold again. This is no different than gravity: I have experienced it, therefore I say it is possible for it to happen again. At its most fundamental level, with math, I am claiming that my experience is differentiated all the time, therefore that differentiation should hold. theoretically, everywhere and everytime. In other words, math is possible. I also see know, that you were right in that probability is its own thing, because it takes it a step deeper: it isn't just a possibility.

    We Need to Define The Definition Of Possibility

    I think that it would be beneficial to really hone in on what it means to have "experienced something before". Where are we drawing the line? Is there a rational line to be drawn?

    Distinctive Knowledge is Assumed

    I think that your epistemology, at its core, rests on assumptions. Now, I don't mean this is a severe blow to the your views: I agree with them. What I mean is that, as far as I am understanding, your epistemology really "kicks in" after the subject assumes that perception, thought, and emotion are valid sources of knowledge. If they agree with that assumption, then your epistemology works. However, since we are philosophizing, I think we really need to hone in on these fundamental principles a little deeper. I think so far your epistemology essentially states:

    "We think, therefore we think"
    "We perceive, therefore we perceive"
    "We feel, therefore we feel"

    Just some food for thought! I know these are probably loaded, completely separate, propositions of mine. So feel free to guide the conversation as you wish.

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    But I suspect that you are only referring to the comparison of plausibilities that relate to one another, so I would like to explicitly state that I am claiming that one can compare all plausibilities to one another in this manner.Bob Ross

    Yes, if you're just comparing the fundamental building blocks of different plausibilities, you can determine plausibility A is more cogent than plausibility B. The problem is, if they aren't within the same context, how useful is that analysis?

    Recall that inductions are made because we have limitations in what we applicably know. Further, less cogent inductions are used to compare what belief you should make about a particular situation. Its about comparing your options. If I'm talking about subject X, and I have two plausibilities, going through the chain of rationality to discover which plausibility is more rational, is useful. If I have a plausibility about subject X, and a plausibility about subject A, what does comparing the cogency get me?

    It may be that the plausibility about subject X is more rational than the plausibility about subject A, but when considering subject A, I have no alternative belief about A, but that plausibility. In that case, the most cogent thing is to choose to act, or not act on that one plausibility I have. This is the point I wanted to emphasize first, though I'm thinking I should have emphasized the technical comparison, then explained when and what context you should compare.

    I think that, in light of us agreement on potentiality, we can finally prove that actual infinites are irrational inductions.Bob Ross

    Your two examples are great. Unlimited infinities are irrational. But some limited infinities may be inapplicable plausibilities. Perhaps there is no limit to space for example. Its plausible. But it is currently inapplicable. When considering the limits of space, we have no viable inductions we can make, so we must remain in the realm of inapplicable plausibility.

    I think, as you may already be inferring, that this actually have heavy implications with respect to your idea of a "first cause"Bob Ross

    Yes. Stating that everything which has a cause, must have a cause, is an unlimited infinity. It breaks down if you examine it in the argument. All that is left, is that there must be a first cause. BUT, this is still either an applicable or inapplicable plausibility at best. It is simply more cogent to believe that there is a first cause, then not. Since we do not have any higher induction we can make in regards to the a first cause within the context of that argument, it is more cogent to conclude there is a first cause.

    I know we had a lot of disputes about mathematical inductions, and so I wanted to briefly continue that conversation with the idea that mathematical inductions do not require another term, contrary to what I was claiming, because they are possibilities.Bob Ross

    Yes, this seems correct. There is a fine dividing line between possibility and applicable knowledge. To say something is possible, is to say the applicable knowledge you just obtained, will be able to be applied again. But this is if we apply that math to reality by actively putting a number within the equation. The logic of the equation itself, is distinctive knowledge based on the rules we have constructed.

    I think that it would be beneficial to really hone in on what it means to have "experienced something before". Where are we drawing the line? Is there a rational line to be drawn?Bob Ross

    It is when you have concluded applicable knowledge within your context. You can experience something, but not have applicable knowledge of it. Lets say you're in a field with a horned goat and ram. When gazing with the animals behind your back, you get head butted from behind. When you gather yourself off the ground and look behind you, you realize the horns are very similar, and you can't tell which one head butt you.

    The thing you can applicably know by going through your distinctive knowledge, is that you were hit by something. There is a bruise on your back in the imprint of a horn, and it is not possible that you could fall down from an impact that bruises you without that being "something". But was it the ram or the goat? Its plausible it was something you weren't aware of at all, but you believe its possible both goats and rams can head butt a person, and it seems more cogent to believe one of them did it.

    But will you ever applicably know which one head butt you? No. Its plausible to believe it was only the sheep, or only the ram. But couldn't we say it was possible that it was either the sheep or the ram because we know it is possible for sheep and rams to head butt people? The care is in the intent of the induction. If I say, "I believe it was the sheep, and not the ram," that is the plausibility. If I say, "I believe it was either the sheep or the ram", this is a possibility.

    I'm not sure if that answered the question, but I felt this was a good example to show the fine line between what can be applicably known, possibility, and plausibility. Feel free to dig in deeper.

    I think that your epistemology, at its core, rests on assumptions. Now, I don't mean this is a severe blow to the your views: I agree with them. What I mean is that, as far as I am understanding, your epistemology really "kicks in" after the subject assumes that perception, thought, and emotion are valid sources of knowledge.Bob Ross

    I don't believe I make those assumptions at all. Its been a while since we visited the building blocks of the paper on page one to determine the difference between distinctive knowledge, and applicable knowledge. I do not claim that perception, thoughts, and emotions are valid sources of knowledge. I claim they are things we know, due to the basis of proving, and thus knowing, that I can discretely experience.

    The discrete experience you have, the separation of the sea of existence into parts and parcels, is not an assumption, or a belief. It is your direct experience, your distinctive knowledge. I form the discrete experience of thoughts as a very low set of essential properties in the beginning, so that I can get to the basic idea of the theory. But now that you have it, go back to the beginning. Use the theory on the formulation of the theory itself. Does it still hold? I think you'll find it will.

    You create an idea of a thought, and you confirm it without contradiction immediately, because it is a discrete experience. Later, you can go back and ask, "Can I refine what a thought is? Could I redefine it? What is the difference between a thought and an emotion? Can I find essential properties that differ, and apply this to myself?"

    Or back to your original issue, "What is an "I"? Can I define it as more than simply that which discretely experiences? Perhaps other creatures discretely experience, but they obviously do it differently from humans?" The doors are open now that you understand the theory. Tackle mind, tackle ethics, tackle God itself. The system of distinctive knowledge, applicable knowledge, and the inductive hierarchy can be applied to it all.

    Will this refine the system itself? Almost certainly. I am under no illusions it is complete, because the reality is, as contexts change, and as more people use it, there are bound to be refinements, and even different contexts of applying the theory itself. But is it a fundamental base that you can retreat to? A base that is consistently logical in its own formation, as well as its application? I believe so. I use it in my own life, which I think adds to the strength of its use as a tool.

    If only I could ever get the idea out there in the philosophical community at large. I have tried publication to no avail. Honestly, I don't even care about credit. Perhaps someone on these forums will read it, understand it, and be able to do what I was unable to. Or perhaps someone will come along and finally disprove it. Either way, it would make me happy to have some resolution for it.

    But back to your questions and detailed drilling. I feel we are coming to an end of the questions about understanding the theory itself, but let us resolve any remaining ones. If you are satisfied, feel free to test the theory in action. We can use it to address epistemology issues or questions you may have had, like thoughts or "I". Since we understand the theory, honestly the best critique of it is to use it. And what better test of a theory of knowledge then to see if it can know itself?

    Thanks again Bob. It has been very gratifying to have someone seriously read and understand the theory up to this point. Whether the theory continues to hold, or crashes and burns, this has been enough.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    Yes, if you're just comparing the fundamental building blocks of different plausibilities, you can determine plausibility A is more cogent than plausibility B. The problem is, if they aren't within the same context, how useful is that analysis?

    I think the comparison is more relevant when you actually have to choose between the two. As a radical example, imagine someone puts a gun up to your head and tells you to bet your life on either plausibility A or B (where both are completely unrelated): I don't think you would just flip a coin, or answer with indifference. I think you would analyze which you are more sure of.

    Your two examples are great. Unlimited infinities are irrational. But some limited infinities may be inapplicable plausibilities. Perhaps there is no limit to space for example. Its plausible. But it is currently inapplicable.

    Excellent point! You are right: potential infinites, when asserted as if they are actual infinites, are also irrational inductions because they are inapplicable plausibilities. I think you were right in wanting to move inapplicable plausibilities to irrational inductions, because they lack potential. I can never apply the belief that any given infinite, within a limit, is actually infinite. Splendid point!

    Yes. Stating that everything which has a cause, must have a cause, is an unlimited infinity. It breaks down if you examine it in the argument. All that is left, is that there must be a first cause. BUT, this is still either an applicable or inapplicable plausibility at best. It is simply more cogent to believe that there is a first cause, then not. Since we do not have any higher induction we can make in regards to the a first cause within the context of that argument, it is more cogent to conclude there is a first cause.

    Now that we agree that actual infinites are irrational, you are right: the other option seems to be a first cause. However, claiming their is a first cause would be the same as claiming this particle is actually the smallest particle that can exist: it is an inapplicable plausibility. Inapplicable plausibilities are irrational inductions (because they lack potential). I can, in the abstract, prove that we will never be able to state that "this is the first cause", just like how we cannot state "this is actually the smallest thing". They are both irrational inductions. What we could say is that "this is potentially the smallest thing", and that is an applicable plausibility (if no one finds anything smaller, then it is potentially the smallest thing). So, in light of this, I think that, at best, you could only claim, rationally, that this or that thing is potentially the first cause: never that there actually is one. Then I think we would be on the same page as claiming potentials would restrict us to our true limits of experience and anything attempting beyond that is irrational. This is what I mean by explanatory-collapsibility: restraining oneself from going beyond one's capabilities, where one is susceptible to making actual claims when it is really potential. We are always in a box, and in that box we shall stay.

    I'm not sure if that answered the question, but I felt this was a good example to show the fine line between what can be applicably known, possibility, and plausibility. Feel free to dig in deeper..

    Although I really appreciate the elaboration, I don't think you addressed the most fundamental issue.

    It is when you have concluded applicable knowledge within your context.

    I consider this completely ambiguous. Although I understand what you are trying to say. I think, as of now, your epistemology is just leaving it up to the subject to decide what is or isn't possible (because they can make, in the absence on any clear definition, "experienced before" mean anything they want). If we don't draw a line at where something has been experienced before, then I think possibility loses its power, so to speak. Is experiencing that apple enough to justify this apple? Is experiencing gravity on earth enough for the moon? Is my car starting enough to justify another car starting? What if they are the same exact model? What if they are different manufacturers. We've touched this a bit before, but, mereologically, where are we drawing the line such that "experience before" is similar enough to "experience now" to the point where I can logically associated them together?

    I do not claim that perception, thoughts, and emotions are valid sources of knowledge.

    If you are saying that you aren't claiming your knowledge to necessarily be true, then I agree.

    I claim they are things we know, due to the basis of proving, and thus knowing, that I can discretely experience.

    My point is that it isn't a proof: it is vicious circle. As far as I understand it, you are stating that "I think, therefore I think", "I perceive, therefore I perceive", and "I feel, therefore I feel". These are not proofs, these are the definition of circular logic.

    The discrete experience you have, the separation of the sea of existence into parts and parcels, is not an assumption, or a belief. It is your direct experience, your distinctive knowledge. I form the discrete experience of thoughts as a very low set of essential properties in the beginning, so that I can get to the basic idea of the theory.

    I am having a hard time of understanding how this isn't "I discretely experience because I discretely experience".

    You create an idea of a thought, and you confirm it without contradiction immediately, because it is a discrete experience.

    Again, how is this not "I think, therefore I think"? This boils down to: "I know that I experience discretely, because I do". This is the definition of circular logic.

    If only I could ever get the idea out there in the philosophical community at large. I have tried publication to no avail. Honestly, I don't even care about credit. Perhaps someone on these forums will read it, understand it, and be able to do what I was unable to. Or perhaps someone will come along and finally disprove it. Either way, it would make me happy to have some resolution for it.

    I am truly sorry that people aren't taking your epistemology seriously: it deserves the credit it is due! I think your biggest adversary are the rationalists. They will put the a priori knowledge at a higher priority than the a posteriori, the egg before the chicken, which I think your epistemology does the reverse (although you don't subscribe to such a distinction, that's typically how they will view it).

    Thanks again Bob. It has been very gratifying to have someone seriously read and understand the theory up to this point. Whether the theory continues to hold, or crashes and burns, this has been enough.

    Of course, thank you for a such a lovely conversation! I thoroughly enjoyed understanding your epistemology.

    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    I think the comparison is more relevant when you actually have to choose between the two. As a radical example, imagine someone puts a gun up to your head and tells you to bet your life on either plausibility A or B (where both are completely unrelated): I don't think you would just flip a coin, or answer with indifference. I think you would analyze which you are more sure of.Bob Ross

    I would argue in that case that analyzing the plausibilities is relevant to that situation. :grin: I think we understand the points here.

    I think you were right in wanting to move inapplicable plausibilities to irrational inductions, because they lack potential. I can never apply the belief that any given infinite, within a limit, is actually infinite.Bob Ross

    The reason why I haven't yet lumped it into an irrational induction, is there is an essential difference between the two. An inapplicable plausibility is unable to be applied, while an irrational induction is a belief in something, despite the application contradicting the belief. But as you've noted, niether have potential, so I think they can be lumped together into a category.

    However, claiming their is a first cause would be the same as claiming this particle is actually the smallest particle that can exist:Bob Ross

    I think a more accurate comparison would be "Claiming there is a first cause is the same as claiming there is a smallest particle that can exist." Comparitively, claiming, "This thing is a first cause, is the same as claiming this particle is the smallest particle." Each have different claims of existence and logic behind it. While I believe the most cogent belief is that there is at least one first cause, I find the bar to prove that any one thing is a first cause, may be extremely difficult to claim.

    The reason is simple. A first cause has no prior reason for its existence. But there is nothing to prevent it from appearing in such a way, that a person could still interpret that something caused it to exist. If a particle appeared with a velocity, how could we tell the difference between it, and a particle who's velocity was caused by another? We would have to witness the inception of the self-caused particle at the time of its formation. But a historical analysis would make the revelation of certain types of self-caused things impossible.

    It is when you have concluded applicable knowledge within your context.

    I consider this completely ambiguous. Although I understand what you are trying to say. I think, as of now, your epistemology is just leaving it up to the subject to decide what is or isn't possible (because they can make, in the absence on any clear definition, "experienced before" mean anything they want).
    Bob Ross

    Not quite. Recall what is required for applicable knowledge from the self-context.

    1. One must have distinctive knowledge first. Distinctive knowledge is the essential properties you have decided something should be. I can define a "tree" as being a wooden plant that is taller than myself.

    2. Experience something, and state, "That is a tree." To applicably know it is a tree, your essential properties must not be contradicted. Turns out the plant I'm looking at it wooden, and taller than myself. I applicably know it as a tree. Therefore I know it is possible that there are wooden plants taller than myself.

    The "experience" is to have applicably known something before. To applicably know something, the individual must meet these minimum specific standards. They can make distinctive knowledge whatever they want, but the application of that distinctive knowledge must follow the process.

    My point is that it isn't a proof: it is vicious circle. As far as I understand it, you are stating that "I think, therefore I think", "I perceive, therefore I perceive", and "I feel, therefore I feel". These are not proofs, these are the definition of circular logic.Bob Ross

    I don't believe this is the case. Circular logic is when a reason, B, is formed from A, and A can only be formed from B. Thus the simple example of, "The bible states God exists. How do we know the bible is true? God says it is."

    But the foundation of discretely experiencing does not rely on the definition of thoughts or perceptions. They do not prove that we discretely experience. Discrete experience is simply the ability to essentially form identities within the wash of experience. A camera can take a picture, but it cannot discretely experience beyond the colors of light it receives. We can. We can focus on certain portions, lump them together as identities, see sheep in fields of grass.

    My definition of "thoughts" does not prove discrete experience. My definition of thoughts comes from discrete experience. Thoughts, as defined here, are simply my ability to continue to discretely experience when I stop sensing. I can choose that definition, because I can choose how to discretely experience. I can then apply it without contradiction. If I stop sensing, and still discretely experience, then I am thinking without contradiction.

    Where is this circular? I see this as a logical consequence, not a conclusion that is the only source that proving that I discretely experience.

    I am having a hard time of understanding how this isn't "I discretely experience because I discretely experience".Bob Ross

    It is, "I discretely experience, therefore I can define a portion of my experience as "thoughts". When do this without contradiction within a particular context (Saying thoughts != thoughts is a contradiction), then I say I know it.

    If you think I do not know that within my self-context, can you disprove it? Can you demonstrate that I do not discretely experience? You cannot, because the act of coming up with an argument alone, and me understanding the counter argument, requires that I discretely experience. Discretely experiencing is a law of a communicable being, built on the principal of non-contradiction. As far as assumptions go, I believe the law of non-contradiction is the one assumption I need to form the theory.

    Of course, maybe I've missed something. If you truly believe it is circular, can you demonstrate it? I look forward to your reply.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    The reason why I haven't yet lumped it into an irrational induction, is there is an essential difference between the two. An inapplicable plausibility is unable to be applied, while an irrational induction is a belief in something, despite the application contradicting the belief. But as you've noted, niether have potential, so I think they can be lumped together into a category.

    Yes, but I don't think an "irrational induction" is "despite the application contradicting the belief" anymore, it is when is is impossible and has no potential. However, I do see your point, I don't think all inapplicable plausibilities are irrational, depending on how we define it. There's a difference between claiming something that cannot be applied now or even in one's lifetime (or 30,000 years from now) and something that can be proven to lack potential (meaning it can be abstractly proven to never be able to be applied). For example, the belief in a magical unicorn that can fly and has invisibility powers isn't necessarily an inapplicable plausibility in terms of the latter, it could be that, as our technology advances, that we can actually detect invisible things somehow or maybe we find one on another planet or something. However, the belief that there's an undetectable unicorn is an example, I would say, of the latter: we can, in the abstract, since it is undetectable, determine it is an irrational induction because it lacks potential. If we define inapplicable plausibilities in the manner of the latter, then I would advocate that all inapplicable plausibilities are actually irrational inductions. However, if the former is also utilized to a certain degree, then further consideration is required.


    I think a more accurate comparison would be "Claiming there is a first cause is the same as claiming there is a smallest particle that can exist." Comparitively, claiming, "This thing is a first cause, is the same as claiming this particle is the smallest particle." Each have different claims of existence and logic behind it. While I believe the most cogent belief is that there is at least one first cause, I find the bar to prove that any one thing is a first cause, may be extremely difficult to claim.

    Although I understand the distinction you are making here: it is still an irrational induction based off of the same logic. I can abstractly prove that when you say it "may be extremely difficult to claim" "there is a smallest particle that can exist" that that can never been applicably known. Therefore, it lacks potential and, subsequently, is an irrational induction. Stating "there is a smallest particle that can exist" is no different than stating "there is an undetectable unicorn". You can never verify either, nor can you disprove it, because it is actually a form of irrationality (I don't need to disprove it beyond demonstrating it lacks potential). I think the only way to amend this is if you were to accept inapplicable inductions, in the manner where they can never be known, as rational. I would disagree (although, yes, this kind of irrational induction targets potentiality and not impossibility).

    The reason is simple. A first cause has no prior reason for its existence. But there is nothing to prevent it from appearing in such a way, that a person could still interpret that something caused it to exist. If a particle appeared with a velocity, how could we tell the difference between it, and a particle who's velocity was caused by another? We would have to witness the inception of the self-caused particle at the time of its formation. But a historical analysis would make the revelation of certain types of self-caused things impossible.

    I think that you are starting to demonstrate why this has no potential. It can never be applicably known. It is simply a belief within the mind, like an undetectable unicorn.

    1. One must have distinctive knowledge first. Distinctive knowledge is the essential properties you have decided something should be. I can define a "tree" as being a wooden plant that is taller than myself.

    2. Experience something, and state, "That is a tree." To applicably know it is a tree, your essential properties must not be contradicted. Turns out the plant I'm looking at it wooden, and taller than myself. I applicably know it as a tree. Therefore I know it is possible that there are wooden plants taller than myself.

    I have no problem with #1, but #2 is where the ambiguity is introduced: you are clumping "trees" together as if that is a universal, it is a particular. To "experience something, and state "that is X"", is something someone can do with virtually anything. To say that the only requirement in #2 is that the essential properties are not contradicted is like using potentiality is if it is possibility. Just because the essential properties don't contradict doesn't mean I am justified in claiming X and Y are similar enough for me to constitute it as the same experience on two different occasions. Although I am probably just misunderstanding you, there's no real justification here that gravity as experienced here is similar enough to say it is the same there. Sure, we could say that it has the same essential property that it falls both times, but that does not mean they are identical enough to constitute it as the same experience: experiencing it on a mountain isn't the same as in a valley. Can I say, after experiencing it in a valley, that it is possible on a mountain?

    I don't believe this is the case. Circular logic is when a reason, B, is formed from A, and A can only be formed from B. Thus the simple example of, "The bible states God exists. How do we know the bible is true? God says it is."

    Let's break this down in the proper circular logic format as you described:

    A is because of B, B is because of A.
    Bible states God exists, We know it is true because God says so.
    I discretely experience because I concluded it in my thoughts without contradiction. How do I know I think? Because I discretely experience.

    You argument, as I understand it, is also circular. In order for any of the epistemology to work, you must conclude, which is a thought. So you conclude you have discrete experiences. But then it can be posited "how do I know I think?", your answer is: "I discretely experience". They are dependent on one another: this is the exact same thing as A proves B, B proves A. Maybe I am just missing something though.

    My definition of "thoughts" does not prove discrete experience. My definition of thoughts comes from discrete experience.

    Here is it in action (I think): you are saying you don't prove discrete experience with thought, because you simply discretely experience. But the whole thing, including the acknowledgment that you discretely experience, is dependent on you have a conclusory thought. I think your argument is along these lines:

    1. I think, therefore I discretely experience
    2. I discretely experience, therefore I think

    I don't think this is explicitly what you were arguing for, but, nevertheless, I think your argument is implicitly utilizing this kind of circular logic. You use your ability to think to conclude that you discretely experience, and then you just simply justify those thoughts with the fact that you discretely experience. This is circular. My original way, "I think, therefore I think", was a bad way of demonstrating this, so I apologize for the confusion, it is more about the relationship between thought and discretely experiencing.

    Thoughts, as defined here, are simply my ability to continue to discretely experience when I stop sensing. I can choose that definition, because I can choose how to discretely experience.

    Again, you are concluding this, which is a thought, so you are using thought to prove discrete experiences, and then vice-versa.

    It is, "I discretely experience, therefore I can define a portion of my experience as "thoughts"

    Again, how did you conclude that? You thought (concluded) that you discretely experience, and then you justified the process of thinking (which you used to acknowledge discrete experience) with the fact that you discretely experience. The separation of your experience into perception, emotion, and thought in itself depends on thought (a particular kind I called rudimentary reason). If you couldn't conclude, then you would have determined that you discretely experience (I would argue that you can't discretely experience without some form of rudimentary reason).

    If you think I do not know that within my self-context, can you disprove it? Can you demonstrate that I do not discretely experience?

    I think this is an appeal to ignorance fallacy, I don't have to disprove it. I am simply analyzing your proof for the conclusion that we discretely experience and I think it is circular. Even if you completely agree with me that it is circular, that doesn't disprove that we discretely experience (and I don't think it has to). I am failing to understand why I would need to disprove it?

    I look forward to your response,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    Sorry for the wait Bob, busy week, and I wanted to have time to focus and make sure I really covered the answers here.

    If we define inapplicable plausibilities in the manner of the latter, then I would advocate that all inapplicable plausibilities are actually irrational inductions. However, if the former is also utilized to a certain degree, then further consideration is required.Bob Ross

    Yes, this is the distinction I am going for. Perhaps I need another name for a belief in something that is counter to what is applicably known. Perhaps that should be classified as an impossibility. Belief in inapplicable plausibilities or impossibilities would be considered irrational inductions. But, I do want to note irrational inductions have their uses. If there are no rational inductions, it is our only option. Further, there are times when the more rational conclusion may be based off an odd context or faulty premises, and irrational inductions are needed to push past those boundaries.

    Stating "there is a smallest particle that can exist" is no different than stating "there is an undetectable unicorn".Bob Ross

    I don't think these are equivalent. The first is a logical conclusion based on our distinctive knowledge. "Smallness" is a state of relativity. Meaning that if two particles are compared, we can observe if one is smaller than the other. This can be applicably known, therefore it is possible that one particle can be smaller than another. We can then construct a formula stating, "If particles can be compared, and we know it is possible for particles to be smaller than another, if we take all of the particles in the universe, there will be a smallest particle."

    This formula would be formal logic of possibility. The problem is when the formula is applied. If we are to state, "That particle is the smallest", we would need to gather all of the particles of the universe to know this. The problem is, we cannot gather all of the particles in the universe, and at that point, our claim is now an inapplicable plausibility.

    Compare this to an undetectable unicorn. We don't even know if a unicorn is possible. This is constructed on a possibility of a horse with a horn, and the plausibility of something that can exist in the universe, but not be detected. Unlike the former formula which is based directly off of a possibility, we have a plausibility mixed into the chain of rationality to arrive at this conclusion.

    Turning particle comparison into a similar cogency of an undetectable unicorn would be something like, "There exists the groggiest particle in the universe." A groggy particle is something that is both larger, and smaller than the particles around it. But a groggy particle is a plausibility based off the possibility of a particle being smaller, and a particle being bigger. We don't know if groggy particles are possible, let alone whether any one particle is the groggiest. Honestly, its a very slight difference in cogency revealed by the chain of reasoning.

    I have no problem with #1, but #2 is where the ambiguity is introduced: you are clumping "trees" together as if that is a universal, it is a particular. To "experience something, and state "that is X"", is something someone can do with virtually anything. To say that the only requirement in #2 is that the essential properties are not contradicted is like using potentiality is if it is possibility. Just because the essential properties don't contradict doesn't mean I am justified in claiming X and Y are similar enough for me to constitute it as the same experience on two different occasions.Bob Ross

    But in the case of the use of tree here, I am not defining it as, "This tree here, is the same as that tree here." I am defining it as a universal. "All things that are wooden and taller than myself are trees." That's all that's required for me to applicably know something as a tree. Every other property would be non-essential to matching that definition.

    Plato once postulated that everything had an ideal form. There was an ideal Tree, that our formulation of trees was based on. Epistemology studied variations of platonic forms for many years, and concluded that there was no ideal form of anything. There is no arbiter of reality that declares what a tree is. That is all based on our distinctive knowledge. If I decide to define "tree" as a universal, I can. As long as its useful in application, I should.

    The point of epistemology, is to figure out how we can claim knowledge of the world. That requires a method of ordering our ability to discretely experience in a way that is rational. Of course someone within their own context can define anything as they like. The point of introducing the logical constraints of the theory is to give a tool to do it in such a way that uses rational outcomes that are consistently useful and have the highest chance of being accurate in their assessment of the world.

    I think you're also using the term potentiality incorrectly. Potentiality has nothing to do with the act of application. It is simply whether we've created distinctive knowledge that is not contradicted by other distinctive knowledge in our head. If I said a tree an essential property of a tree was that it must be taller than myself, but then also said an essential property of a tree is that it must be shorter than myself, this is a contradiction, and inapplicable. Potentiality is a general description of whether something is rational in the hierarchy of inductions, but it does not introduce anything new, or contradict the rules of the hierarchy. When applying the distinctive knowledge you have created, if it is similar enough that it does not contradict the essential properties of your definition, then you applicably know it. When formulating distinctive knowledge in your head, if it is non-contradictory to other distinctive knowledge, then it has potential.

    Sure, we could say that it (gravity) has the same essential property that it falls both times, but that does not mean they are identical enough to constitute it as the same experience: experiencing it on a mountain isn't the same as in a valley. Can I say, after experiencing it in a valley, that it is possible on a mountain?Bob Ross

    It depends on the context, and the definition of the word. If the only essential property of gravity as a definition is, "That which pulls me to the ground," then yes, you experience gravity in both places. If you have only experienced gravity in a valley, and have not yet gone to a mountain or know what it is composed of, this is an applicable plausibility that gravity will also exist on a mountain. If you say, I have experienced gravity on the planet Earth, then it is possible that when you go to anywhere on Earth, you will experience gravity.

    It is all about the context and degree of specificity. The more specific and exacting you are in the requirements to applicably know something, the more difficult it becomes to applicably know it, and the more you have to rely on inductions. Of course, define something too broadly and generally, and it isn't very useful. Define something to narrow and exacting, and it generally won't be useful in most cases either.

    1. I think, therefore I discretely experienceBob Ross

    This is incorrect. Thoughts have nothing to do with the ability to discretely experience. I never say, "First I think, then I discretely experience." I eliminate thoughts, and arrive at the idea that discrete experience is the one thing I cannot eliminate. There is nothing to necessitate that I define thoughts in a particular way. I could never define thoughts if I wanted to.

    For centuries the number zero did not exist. Nothing in math necessitated that we define zero, but defining zero turned out to be incredibly useful. I only defined thoughts in such a way that was useful and relatable to other people. But I could easily see another person never defining thoughts at all. They could define thoughts as part of the senses that are unceasing. As long as it was defined in such a way as to have potential, and it could be applied without contradiction, then that is what they would distinctively and applicably know thoughts as.

    Thoughts, as defined here, are simply my ability to continue to discretely experience when I stop sensing. I can choose that definition, because I can choose how to discretely experience.

    Again, you are concluding this, which is a thought, so you are using thought to prove discrete experiences, and then vice-versa.
    Bob Ross

    No, I am taking certain discrete experiences, and labeling them as thoughts. Thoughts are a subset of discrete experiences, they do not define discrete experiences. I do not consider "sensing" as thoughts within that context, but they are also discrete experiences.

    Could you define it differently? I'm sure you could. Maybe you think everything is a thought, in which case, then thoughts would be a synonym for discrete experiences. If so, you would need to come up with a new word for the sub-thought that happens when you no longer sense. Or maybe that's not an essential property for you. Define it as you will, that fits within the theory. It is only when you apply it that it must not be contradicted by reality for you to applicably know it.

    If you think I do not know that within my self-context, can you disprove it? Can you demonstrate that I do not discretely experience?

    I think this is an appeal to ignorance fallacy, I don't have to disprove it.
    Bob Ross

    Let me rephrase this to what it should have been. Can you disprove that you discretely experience? Recall this is not merely "thinking" as I've defined it in the paper. It is the ability to take the entirety of your experience, and divide it into parts. The question of course is, can you even make an argument against discretely experiencing, if you didn't discretely experience? If you can counter the idea that you discretely experience, then yes, the entire theory fails. But if you can't, then I see nothing against it.

    Thanks again Bob, I will be answering more quickly this week.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    Sorry for the wait Bob, busy week, and I wanted to have time to focus and make sure I really covered the answers here.

    No worries! I always appreciate your responses because they are so well thought out!

    I think, before I address your post (which is marvelously well done!), I need to try to convey, in terms of our discussions pertaining to thought, the underlying meaning of what I am attempting to portray. Forgive me, but I am still contemplating it and, consequently refurbishing my ideas on the subject as I go on, so the terminology is not what I would prefer you to focus on (as I try to explicate it hereafter): it is the underlying meaning (because I freely admit that these terms I am about to use may not be the best ones, but, unfortunately, they are the best ones I can think of right now).

    I first would like to explain back to you my understanding of discrete experience and then utilize that to attempt to convey a problem with it being utilized as the most fundamental in terms of chronological viability (derivation of the subject, and consequently everything, in terms of viability). When I, shortly hereafter, explain your concept of discrete experience, please correct me anywhere I am misunderstanding as it is crucial to what I state afterwards!

    Discrete experience is differentiation, that is the capability of impenetrability and cohesion. Without such, we wouldn't have existence, or, at the very least, it wouldn't be anything like we are now as there is nothing more fundamental than differentiation (or at least I think that is how your argument goes, but, again, please correct me!). So when you say:

    The question of course is, can you even make an argument against discretely experiencing, if you didn't discretely experience?

    I think this is exactly what you are arguing: differentiation is the derivative of all else. So, no matter what thought manifests in my mind to counter your claim, I must concede, as you are right, that it in itself required "discrete experience"--that is, to be more specific, differentiation.

    However, I think this is wrong and right. Right in the sense of derivation in terms of extrapolated chronological viability, and wrong in the sense of derivation in terms of just chronological viability. Let me try to explain.

    In terms of derivation, we first have thoughts, but, as you rightly pointed out, there is a difference between the concept of thoughts (which is an extrapolated inference of what is typically characterized as the process of thinking) and thought itself. You are absolutely right that a person could never define thought, however, they would still be thinking. This is where, as you also rightly pointed out, a distinction needs to be made: thinking in itself and its own extrapolation of itself into a characterized process. The latter is not required, the former is. Furthermore, this is why I will be disregarding the latter, the characterized process, for now and focusing on the former because I am attempting the derivation of chronological viability of the subject (myself).

    With respect to thinking in itself (not to be conflated with Kant's notorious use of thing in themselves, I am making no such noumenon/phenomenon distinction--I just can't think of a better word yet), it, in turn, requires a further derivation: I can question, logically, the very discernment between the thoughts themselves, which is also a thought that relates solely to thinking in itself and not to traditional objects. In other words, I have thought A and thought B, I can ask, logically, "why was I able to have A and B and not just a blob of thought (meaning the cohesion of all thoughts)?". I think this is the level at which your argument determines that the answer to such a question in the more fundamental "discrete experience" (aka, differentiation is required for the thoughts to occur). You are right! But the derivation does not stop there. Now, in terms of the aforementioned question, I could legitimately answer myself with "differentiation must occur for my thoughts". This is 100% valid. However, now I can ask a further question: "how am I able to be convinced and why am I convinced that my answer satisfied it?". I think this reveals to the subject that the most fundamental thing, in terms of just chronological viability, is the fact that they are a motive. They are a perpetual motive towards logic, which any answer (any conclusion) that satisfies logic satisfies the subject. Now I think we are getting more fundamental than simply differentiation. There are rules, identified later as "logic", which the subject, at its most rudimentary form, is perpetually motivated to follow. Without it, differentiation is meaningless. This is because a being could have the capability to differentiate while never being motivated to utilize it within any construct of rules.

    Now, I think you could counter this with "logic requires differentiation to occur in the first place", but my point is that motivation doesn't necessarily require differentiation: it is the thing differentiating--based off of that motive. Another problem is that I can answer "what is the motive?" by utilizing that motive, thereby within its motivated constraints, but I cannot really answer, as of yet, "why is there a motive?". To be clear, I don't mean motive in the sense of "I want to do this", no that is already very far away in the sense of derivation and, consequently, utilizes the motive and discrete experience to conclude such a "want". This is what I was trying to get at with rudimentary reason, but I am not sure anymore if that is the best term for it.

    I think you are arguing that differentiation is the key to everything (in terms of derivation), I am saying you are right if we are talking about derivation in the sense of extrapolated chronological viability, contrary to just chronological viability. The reason I think this is the case is because, from this motive we differentiate, and thereby, it is something we conclude by means of the motive that we have discrete experience in the first place. In more simple terms, the fact that either of us can argue either way requires a motive we did not choose, for it is our bedrock, which constraints us to logic, which we don't ever have to define to know it is true. That is why we can create a vicious absurdity of questioning where we demand a logical explanation for everything--including the concept of everything. My point is that this demanding requires a motive which precedes differentiation in terms of viability: differentiation requires a motive. However, in term of extrapolating where that motive came from (the "why is the motive there"), I think the best explanation is what you are arguing for: differentiation is required. This is because I could very well counter this with "well, motive itself is a differentiation of sorts". This is true, but I am trying to convey that that is utilizing the motive to even make that statement in the first place, and therefore, everything points back to this motive. But if I ever want to attempt to explain the motive, then I will be bound to its rules, logic, which I must be convinced is being obeyed and, therefore, it will require that I extrapolate, within the inevitable use of the motive, that it all requires differentiation--including itself. Notice that this doesn't actually mean that motive depends on differentiation, only that the use of motive to derive itself will always result, due to abiding by its own rules, that it requires differentiation. Does that make any sense?

    So, with that in mind (hopefully I did a good enough job of explaining it for now), when you say:

    Can you disprove that you discretely experience?

    I cannot, because my use of my motive to derive my motive will inevitably be constrained to its logic, which will require that it be convinced that itself is derived from differentiation. This is not the same thing as stating it actually is derived from differentiation. Do you see what I am, in underlying meaning, trying to convey?

    It is the ability to take the entirety of your experience, and divide it into parts.

    Again, this requires a motive.

    If that didn't make sense, please let me know! But if it did, I think it demonstrates quite effectively that, regardless of how we want to define thought, we are logically bound to utilizing thinking in itself, via the motive, to derive differentiation in the first place. Therefore, I still do think you are arguing "I think, therefore I discrete experience, and vice versa", but "think" in the sense of itself, which requires no defining. In other words, I don't think you are arguing in your paper that the concept of thinking, as defined in your paper, is what derives discrete experience, but, rather, you are implicitly utilizing thinking in itself throughout the entirety of the derivation.

    This is incorrect. Thoughts have nothing to do with the ability to discretely experience. I never say, "First I think, then I discretely experience."

    I think you are talking about the concept of thoughts, and in that sense I think you are right. But not in the sense of thinking in itself.

    I eliminate thoughts, and arrive at the idea that discrete experience is the one thing I cannot eliminate.

    You cannot eliminate motive, subsequently thinking in itself, without utilizing it to attempt to do so. I think you are talking about the concept of thoughts, which is a defining, and you are right in that sense, but I am not trying to argue against that at all.

    Since this is becoming entirely too long, I will address the possibility and "first cause" points you made after I let you have proper time to respond to the aforementioned comments. Again, splendid post! I really enjoy reading your responses as they are incredibly well thought out!

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    No worries! I always appreciate your responses because they are so well thought out!Bob Ross

    The same Bob!

    Forgive me, but I am still contemplating it and, consequently refurbishing my ideas on the subject as I go on, so the terminology is not what I would prefer you to focus on (as I try to explicate it hereafter): it is the underlying meaning (because I freely admit that these terms I am about to use may not be the best ones, but, unfortunately, they are the best ones I can think of right now).Bob Ross

    I fully understand! It is a constant struggle for me as well. One of the reasons I respect you is you are a participant trying to understand what the underlying meaning of what I am saying is as well. I hope I have been as open and understanding back.

    This is where, as you also rightly pointed out, a distinction needs to be made: thinking in itself and its own extrapolation of itself into a characterized process. The latter is not required, the former is. Furthermore, this is why I will be disregarding the latter, the characterized process, for now and focusing on the former because I am attempting the derivation of chronological viability of the subject (myself).Bob Ross

    Yes, I agree with this.

    Now, in terms of the aforementioned question, I could legitimately answer myself with "differentiation must occur for my thoughts". This is 100% valid. However, now I can ask a further question: "how am I able to be convinced and why am I convinced that my answer satisfied it?". I think this reveals to the subject that the most fundamental thing, in terms of just chronological viability, is the fact that they are a motive. They are a perpetual motive towards logic, which any answer (any conclusion) that satisfies logic satisfies the subject. Now I think we are getting more fundamental than simply differentiation.Bob Ross

    I think you have something very clear with motive. Motive can be used to describe "Why I discretely experience" There is something that compels the mind to do so. What is that compulsion?

    The issue I have is that this motive is logic. While a motive can be logic, it is unfortunately not the motive of everyone, nor necessarily a basic function of thought. Many thinking things are not motivated by logic. Survival and emotions seem to be the most basic of motives that compel us to discretely experience, and identify the world a particular way.

    Logic can be done without training or thought, but it is often something learned. It is a higher order of thinking that one must learn by experience or be taught to consistently think and be motivated in such a manner. That is what the quest for knowledge is. How do I take the fact that I discretely experience, and use it in a logical way? For one's distinctive knowledge, it must not be contradicted. In application to reality, it must not be contradicted. And from there, the rest of the logic can build.

    There is nothing to compel us to think logically, but a logical conclusion itself. A person who rejects logic entirely in favor of survival or emotions will not be able to discretely experience in terms of knowable outcomes, but in more of a selfish and basic survival satisfaction. This is part of "context". A person who does not think within the context of logic, cannot really know the world, they just react to it. How do you convince a person to think logically? How do you convince a person to reject their personal emotions, and sometimes "survival of self/personality" in favor of higher order thinking?

    That is each person's choice. I do believe that thinking logically will benefit a person more in the long term. But my epistemology cannot convince a person to think logically. It can only convince a person that thinks logically, that it is a logical way to think.

    You've used a term a couple of times here, "chronological viability". What does that mean to you? You've noted two types. Could you flesh them out for me? Thanks for the great input!
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    I fully understand! It is a constant struggle for me as well. One of the reasons I respect you is you are a participant trying to understand what the underlying meaning of what I am saying is as well. I hope I have been as open and understanding back.

    Thank you! Same to you! I wasn't bringing that up with any implication that you weren't attempting to understand the underlying meaning, just that, since my terminology isn't really on point yet, I wanted to notify you, so to speak, that simple acknowledgement that I haven't worked out all the kinks.

    Motive can be used to describe "Why I discretely experience" There is something that compels the mind to do so. What is that compulsion?

    Not quite, I would say. Motive is deeper than that: it is the underlying motivation, along with the most fundamentals rules, that must be abided by. Therefore, i consider the statement "I discretely experience" an extrapolation which utilizes this fundamental motive, and subsequently the outlined rules that constraint it, to determine that that is true in the first place. I am trying to convey that it starts, at the most fundamental aspect, with motive, and consequently a set of rules, and not discrete experience.

    The issue I have is that this motive is logic. While a motive can be logic, it is unfortunately not the motive of everyone, nor necessarily a basic function of thought. Many thinking things are not motivated by logic. Survival and emotions seem to be the most basic of motives that compel us to discretely experience, and identify the world a particular way.

    When I used the term "logic", admittedly, this may not be the right word to use. I am not referring to anything that is taught. When you are using the term "logic", I am thinking of "rationality". Anything that could be taught to the subject must abide by the motive, the rules, that subject necessarily has. When I say "rules", I don't mean all the rules they could ever abide by, but, rather, the rules that are necessarily the case for any convincement to occur. In other words, you can't teach them anything without them first having this motive, for that would mean they don't have any set of rules, fundamental rules that is, that they must follow. This doesn't mean that whatever they are convinced of is rational, but it does mean they are convinced of something. This convincement can only occur, I am trying to argue, given a motive, which perpetuates the rudimentary, fundamental rules that must be abided by for a claim to convince them. Therefore, I see no difference with "survival" or "emotions". If someone does something based off of "emotions", they have considered that their claim abides by the most rudimentary rules, set in place by the motive, and thereby, in the heat of the moment, they are convinced of it.

    When you say:
    " Survival and emotions seem to be the most basic of motives that compel us to discretely experience, and identify the world a particular way"

    I think this is an extrapolation that requires the motive in the first place for you to be convinced of this. You are extrapolating claims, for example in terms of survival, based off of empirical evidence in terms of evolution (which is fine, but this is an analysis at a much higher level, because it utilizes motive in the process, than what I am trying to convey).

    Logic can be done without training or thought, but it is often something learned

    Again, I may be just misusing "logic", but I would consider your use of "logic" to be "rationality". Everyone, in the sense that I am using it, utilizes "logic". It is simply a rudimentary, most fundamental, set of rules that is perpetuated by a motive. Without it, the subject wouldn't be capable of rationality or irrationality.

    . It is a higher order of thinking that one must learn by experience or be taught to consistently think and be motivated in such a manner.

    I would characterize this as "rationality" (or something like that).

    How do I take the fact that I discretely experience, and use it in a logical way?

    In terms of what I am trying to convey, this proposition here is too high level. The most fundamental thing isn't that you discretely experience, it is that you are convinced that it is the case. There was a motivation, with you as a subject, to innately attempt convincement by means of a rudimentary set of rules that must be abided by. In other words, when you claim "you discrete experience" or that "the most fundamental thing is discrete experience", these claims are only possible if something has a motive to try to be convinced of these via a set of necessary rules. This set of rules doesn't have to encompass all of rational thought--so basically the motivation towards the necessary use of the rudimentary rules, along with those very rules are rational, but not all rational rules are in that set of rudimentary rules (they can be built off of them). I think you are generally correct in the sense that if I were to lump "logic" into what can be learned and what necessarily isn't learned, but is built off of, then that is true. However, if I did that then "logic" would necessarily have to have two sub-types, and motive would be associated with the aspect that isn't learned.

    There is nothing to compel us to think logically, but a logical conclusion itself. A person who rejects logic entirely in favor of survival or emotions will not be able to discretely experience in terms of knowable outcomes, but in more of a selfish and basic survival satisfaction.

    Again, I would say "nothing compels us to think rationally". But if I were to go with the way you are using "logic", then I would split it into two sub types, and emphasize the aspect that is necessary to learn anything in the first place. Survival and emotions are still formulated from the motive and its rules. If the subject is truly convinced that their decision to follow emotions isn't correct, then they necessarily would not follow their emotions. They may deny certain rational claims, but they necessarily utilize a particular motive, which they don't control, which perpetuates the rules by which they are convinced of anything at all. Does that make sense?

    How do you convince a person to think logically?

    Again, you would have to convince them, which would require that it abide by the necessary rules, from the motive, that is in place for them (I don't mean "in place" in the sense that they are choosing them--they aren't).

    You've used a term a couple of times here, "chronological viability". What does that mean to you? You've noted two types. Could you flesh them out for me? Thanks for the great input!

    Of course, so, in a nutshell, "chronological viability" is the attempt of the subject to derive the chronological order of what must come first before another thing. I call it "viability" because I see the derivation of things in terms of which order produces the necessary viability that I experience. For example, if I were to think that my discrete experience is derived from the car I see, in a literal sense, then that cannot be true because the viability of the car's existence as I see it depends on discrete experience in the first place. But to ask "what must come first" can be taken two different ways (I think). It is sort of like in the sense of the chicken vs the egg: which comes first? I think we can derive something in terms of extrapolated chronological viability and just chronological viability. The former would be more in terms with the egg coming before the chicken (the bedrock of the chicken is the egg, as the egg must come first for the chicken to be there), whereas the latter is in terms of what had to be there for the consideration in the first place (the chicken extrapolated that it came from the egg, therefore the chicken is required for that extrapolation to occur in the first place, therefore it must be more sure of its existence over the fact that it came from the egg). I think these are both important aspects of derivation, but shouldn't be taken into account solely without consideration of the other. I think that the motive, and its rules, is required, in the sense of just chronological viability, before the discrete experience. But once the motive is, whatever that may be, and consequently its rules, then it necessarily follows that anything I can possibly imagine requires discrete experience--including the attempted derivation of the motive itself and its rules. Does that make sense?

    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    Therefore, i consider the statement "I discretely experience" an extrapolation which utilizes this fundamental motive, and subsequently the outlined rules that constraint it, to determine that that is true in the first place. I am trying to convey that it starts, at the most fundamental aspect, with motive, and consequently a set of rules, and not discrete experience.Bob Ross

    I read the entirety of your post, but I feel this sums it up nicely. The goal of the knowledge theory was to find just one thing that I could "know", and use that to go from there. I can know that I discretely experience, but I explicitly did not try to determine "why" I discretely experience. The reasons being was it was something I could not "know" as a foundation, and also that it wasn't important for what I was trying to accomplish.

    That being said, do I believe that there is something which causes us to discretely experience? Absolutely. But I believe this is something beyond the conscious mind. This is neuroscience, the mechanisms by which we think. Do I think its fun to explore in a philosophical manner what it is that causes us to discretely experience? Yes! Philosophy is about trying to get answers to questions that give us new questions to explore.

    For my part, I have no skin in that game, and have not considered it beyond a passing thought. Is it something we can applicably know? Maybe. But do I think its needed for the theory to be viable? At this point, no. My question for you is, is there something you feel 'motive' brings to the table that challenges or puts to question the formulation of the epistemology I've put forth so far? If yes, then we'll have to explore it in earnest. If not, then feel free to continue putting forth your idea, I would still like to see what you've come up with. For my part, I feel you are noting something which I feel has promise, and have no disagreements with on first thought.

    Of course, so, in a nutshell, "chronological viability" is the attempt of the subject to derive the chronological order of what must come first before another thing. I call it "viability" because I see the derivation of things in terms of which order produces the necessary viability that I experience.Bob Ross

    So this is sort of a descriptive order of causality, or why we arrive at the point that we are in our thinking?

    But once the motive is, whatever that may be, and consequently its rules, then it necessarily follows that anything I can possibly imagine requires discrete experience--including the attempted derivation of the motive itself and its rules. Does that make senseBob Ross

    I believe so. It is not that discrete experience causes the motive to be, but we do need to discretely experience to know what the motive is. If I have that wrong, let me know! Thank you for fleshing that out.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    The goal of the knowledge theory was to find just one thing that I could "know", and use that to go from there. I can know that I discretely experience, but I explicitly did not try to determine "why" I discretely experience.

    My question for you is, is there something you feel 'motive' brings to the table that challenges or puts to question the formulation of the epistemology I've put forth so far? If yes, then we'll have to explore it in earnest.

    I think that, although I completely understand that it seems completely unrelated to your epistemology, the first quote pertains to my objection. I think that if you are trying to find one thing that you can "know", that this, in terms of derivation, it should be you. Nothing, in terms of just chronological viability, can be derived further than the subject. It doesn't start with discrete experience, it starts with you obtaining the knowledge that you discretely experience by means of thinking in itself: you begin with thought (but,again, in itself and not its characterization of itself). Albeit a very close connection between the two, I do believe you start with the thought that convinces you that you discretely experience, and then go from there. This is why, although I agree with your work, I think your epistemology starts at some mile other than 0 in a 500 mile race: you simply start your endeavor off of an assumption, that is discrete experience, and work your way from there without providing sufficient justification for discrete experience. I may be simply misunderstanding you, but as I far as I can tell it seems like your epistemology simply posits discrete experience as a given, but I am trying to get at that positing itself exposes a more fundamental aspect than differentiation. I truly do think that your argument (1) posits discrete experience as self-evident and (2), in actuality, utilizes the more fundamental aspect that is required to even put forth the argument in the first place which, thereby, causes your argument to really be "I think (in itself), therefore I discrete experience. I discretely experience, therefore I think (in itself)" (this is no different than A -> B, B -> A, which really is A -> A, so I do think you are essentially saying "I discretely experience because I discretely experience--hence #1). In other words, I am disputing the grounds of your epistemology, as I don't think your argument in the essays really provides any sufficient response.

    When you say that you don't provide a "why" for discretely experience, I think that is fair enough if you are right in that discrete experience is the most fundamental thing, which I don't think is true. I think you are agreeing with me then that your epistemology starts with an axiom that must be assumed, but it is so effective only due it being a commonality between humans (it isn't a very hard axiom to adopt). My point is that your argument has a fundamental flaw: you are arguing that discrete experience is the most fundamental, but yet you are using thinking in itself to do that in the first place. I think the fact that you can put forth an argument at all provides direct explication into the fact that discrete experience isn't the most fundamental thing. This may just very well be a point that you don't find particularly useful in terms of what you want to portray in your essays, but it really comes down to which requires the other to be viable, thereby which is the most fundamental, the motive to differentiate (to think in itself), or the differentiation that occurs as a result of it? That is what I am trying to get at. This is why I think your epistemology fails: not because it is wrong, only because it posits discrete experience as if it actually is the most fundamental and that that is proven. If your epistemology were to simply concede that it is starting off with the assumption of differentiation, I think everything necessarily follows quite nicely. I'm not sure if that makes sense or not.

    So this is sort of a descriptive order of causality, or why we arrive at the point that we are in our thinking?

    Yes, it is to question our way into deriving what must precede another for it to be viable. It is to determine what is the most fundamental in terms of what, in terms of your experience, requires for all else. However, on the flip side, it can also be analyzed in the sense of extrapolated precedence. So the utilization of whatever was required to even posit the questions in the first place can be utilized to determine what even itself must logically be preceded by in order for itself to be viable. However, my point concern with extrapolated forms of derivation is that the subject ends up more sure of whatever they found logically necessarily precedes them then themselves and then, subsequently, can fall into a trap of actually doing things that they normally wouldn't do as a result. I like to think of them both as useful forms of derivation, but the derivation to what must exist for the consideration in the first place must always be a more sure fact than anything that can be necessarily, and logically, extrapolated from it (including its own extrapolation).

    It is not that discrete experience causes the motive to be, but we do need to discretely experience to know what the motive is.

    Yes I believe this is accurate. However, I would like to emphasize that this in no way implies that we start with the differentiation (the discrete experience): it implies that the discrete experience is concluded to be true or exist based off of the motive. I can posit that "I discretely experience", but the fact that I can posit explicates what is actually the most fundamental. If it were possible to experience differentiation (discretely experience) without motive (or thinking in itself), although I can't say it is even possible, I would say that, paradoxically, you wouldn't experience at all. If you lacked any motive to be convinced via a set of rules, then you would never know that you experience in the first place. You never would have posited this epistemological theory. We wouldn't know that we are conversing right now. etc. Now it may be that both motive and its subsequent differentiation are bi-dependent, however my point is that differentiation is subsequent to motive, or, better yet, thinking in itself. Don't get me wrong, I think your concern is very warranted: would this be really worth prepending to your essays? Wouldn't it just over-complicate things? It may very well be that the best approach to your philosophy is to start with the assumption of discrete experience, which isn't the most fundamental just to provide easier comprehension for the reader (or to keep it on point to what you would like to portray). But my point is that it doesn't seem like your essays really acknowledge this, as they actually, on the contrary, seem to be arguing that it is the most fundamental and that that is proven.

    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    My point is that your argument has a fundamental flaw: you are arguing that discrete experience is the most fundamental, but yet you are using thinking in itself to do that in the first place.Bob Ross

    I'm going to start here and work my way around the post. First, I do not think that discrete experience is the most fundamental thing that explains our existence. I think discrete experience is the most fundamental thing an existence must be able to do to know, and it is a fundamental that can first be defined clearly, and without contradiction. Remember that knowledge is essentially having a clear definition with essential properties that does not compete with any other. Second, when we apply that definition, it must not be contradicted.

    I want to be very clear, I do not think there is nothing prior to discrete experience. I also do not think that something that is not a "being" can discretely experience. I believe it is fundamental that there be a "self". One cannot discretely experience without being something. But I find that I cannot define the "self" as a fundamental, without first defining discrete experience.

    Now, I could be wrong. Perhaps you can prove this. Can you know something prior to discrete experience? Can you know what an "I" is before you are able to differentiate between the totality of experience? I know that you can believe such, but can you know it? Can you know what eyes are? A mind? The difference between your body and another thing? Conscious and unconscious? I can't reasonably see how this is possible without the ability to discretely experience, and further, without he understanding of discrete experience. Again, I do believe there is a "self", but I cannot define or even conceive of a self without first discretely experiencing.

    I think that if you are trying to find one thing that you can "know", that this, in terms of derivation, it should be you.Bob Ross

    In a way, I do. "I" am the discrete experiencer. That is how I know what "I" am. But, the "I" is not necessary. I could not have a notion of "I" in my head, but still note there is the totality of experience, and there are different things within experience.

    If you recall, I never identity an "I" beyond that. Because it is not necessary for the epistemology to occur. One thing we have not covered yet, is that my epistemology is not human centric. It can be applied to insects, plants, animals, and AI. Imagine a simple ant. An ant can discretely experience. Does it know what an "I" is? Does it know it can discretely experience? No, but it can know things, because it discretely experiences. It knows the sugar in front of it is good compared to the dirt that surrounds it. It is of course an extremely limited context, but it knows by taste that some things should be eaten, while others should not.

    Can an AI know things? If it can discretely experience, yes. It is a limited context, but a roomba can map out my floor over time, and applicably know where to clean after several cycles. A roomba will never discretely experience the notion of an "I". Can a computer know things without fundamental building blocks that allow it to discretely experience? Of course not. But even if we wanted it to realize it had as self, it would be impossible for it to know it had a self without being able to discretely experience that "it" was different than "the world".

    Discrete experience does not require language. It merely requires that you are able to discern separation within existence. That is the fundamental needed to start having knowledge. Then I can discretely experience that "I" am separate from "that other stuff". Can I realize that I am an "I" before I can discretely experience? No, its not possible. Therefore in my view, the most fundamental aspect that we can know, is discrete experience.

    If you still have some doubts, think on the philosophy of solipsism. It is the idea that "I" is everything. I am the only consciousness in the world, and everything that happens, is due to the invention of my existence. There are people who consider and debate such a theory. Meaning that the "I" is not as fundamental as you think to knowledge. Further, without being able to discretely experience, one cannot have a debate about what I is. Did we not go back and forth in the beginning? What "I" is is not a fundamental, unquestionably proved thing.

    If you can prove that the "I" is necessary to have knowledge, then feel free. Create the definition with essential properties, and apply it to reality without contradiction. That being, that an "I" is more fundamentally known then discrete experience. I am saying you must be able to discretely experience before there is the concept of an "I". You are saying there must be a concept of an "I" before I can have the concept of discrete experience. While "You" must exist to discretely experience, "You" existing does not give you the fundamentals of an epistemology, it is "You" that can discretely experience that does.

    causes your argument to really be "I think (in itself), therefore I discrete experience. I discretely experience, therefore I think (in itself)" (this is no different than A -> B, B -> A, which really is A -> A, so I do think you are essentially saying "I discretely experience because I discretely experience--hence #1).Bob Ross

    I want to be very clear on the proof, because I believe there is still a fundamental misunderstanding of what is being proposed. I discretely experience, because any proposal that I do not discretely experience, is contradicted. The simple proof I put forward is that to present any counter argument to discretely experiencing, to even understand what it is you are trying to counter, you must discretely experience. This is not A -> A.

    1. There is experience.
    2. Knowledge is a deduction without contradiction.
    3. Discrete experience is known = A.
    4. A because !A is a contradiction.
    5. A allows the description to divide all experience into different aspects and definitions.
    6. A allows the idea of a "self/I". The most basic definition being, "I" am what discretely experiences.
    7. A allows the idea of "thoughts".
    8. 3 and 4 can can be applicably known if they are applied to reality without contradiction.

    Understand that I agree there must be an "I" before "it" can discretely experience, but that I cannot define and know what an "I" is, unless I know something first. And the first thing I can truly know, and must know, is there is discrete experience. How am I to differentiate among existence what an "I" is without the ability to discretely experience first? I hope this cleared up what I'm trying to prove.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    I agree, I think we are still not quite understanding each other, so I will try to do my best to respond to your statements (very thought-provoking as usual!).

    First, I do not think that discrete experience is the most fundamental thing that explains our existence. I think discrete experience is the most fundamental thing an existence must be able to do to know, and it is a fundamental that can first be defined clearly, and without contradiction

    Fair enough. I don't think that you are arguing that discrete experience is the only thing, or that we can't induce beyond (or before) that, but I am questioning your claim that it is the most fundamental thing an existence must have to be able to know. I am providing a contender: without convincement, discrete experience is useless and cannot be extrapolated in the first place. If you couldn't conclude anything at all, then you wouldn't know you discretely experience. Now, I think this leads me to a good point you made: the distinction between knowing something inherently and conceptualizing it. In other words, you don't need to conclude you discretely experience to discretely experience. However, although it is a splendid point, I think there are two different kinds of knowledge that need to be addressed here: implicit and explicit. For example, I can implicitly know that food is necessary for me to survive without explicitly knowing it at all. But once I conceptualize it to whatever degree, then it necessarily becomes explicit knowledge. I like to think of this in terms of knowledge pertaining of itself vs in itself: the former is the conceptualization of the latter (former is explicit, latter is implicit). The reason I think this to be incredibly important is that I think you are arguing for discrete experience, at its most fundamental state, as implicit knowledge (that can or cannot be made explicit)(aka discrete experience in itself and not of itself, although the latter is a possibility, the former is a necessity). Correct me if I am wrong here, but that is what I am understanding you to be, generally, claiming. I am trying to propose that implicit knowledge can only be actualized (and thus obtained) once it has been made explicit. In other words, existence (whatever thing we are talking about that exists) doesn't obtain implicit knowledge until after it conceptualizes it and extrapolates the implicit therefrom. For example, let's say, hypothetically, that I never had realized, explicitly, that I discretely experience, and, upon reading your brilliant essays, now realize it. Then, and only then, would I then know that I implicitly discretely experienced all those times prior to the moment I realized explicitly that I discretely experience. If, for example, I never realized I discretely experience, then I would never know I discretely experience (because implicit knowledge is extrapolated from explicit knowledge). But there's also a need for considering the point of reference: with respect to you, even if I never realize I discretely experience, I may be a discrete experiencer to some degree or another. This entails that, if you've conceptualized me as a discrete experiencer whereas I haven't, you know I discretely experience but I don't. The moment, if at all, that I realize that I discretely experience, which would only be by means of extrapolating the implicit in itself from of itself, is the moment I know and not before that. Likewise, when I am arguing for thinking in itself, I think I was wrong to use that as the bedrock (along with motive) because the conceptualization of thinking (and motive) is required for me to even realize I think (or have a motive) in the first place, therefore thinking of itself (which is explicit knowledge) is required for me to then extrapolate that I was implicitly thinking in itself in the first place (and that it is a necessary extrapolation)(ditto for motive). I think this is the same process (fundamentally) for all knowledge: including this very statement I am making right now. That previous sentence required that I conceptualized such a thing, explicitly, and which I can claim therefrom to have been occurring implicitly before I made it explicit in my knowledge. Basically, you are claiming (I think) that discrete experience cannot be contradicted because that contradiction also requires discrete experience. I am claiming, although that is fine, it is an extrapolation that first had to be conceptualized (explicitly) to then, only thereafter, be considered implicitly true prior to its conceptualization. Therefore, the conceptualization is required first and foremost in order to ever claim anything ever was implicit previous to something explicitly being known. To know that you think requires that you conceptualized, to some degree, thought itself and then, therefrom, extrapolated you must have been thinking prior to this realization (i.e. implicitly)--my point is that without that explicit conceptualization, you would have never known that you think. Without the conceptualization that you discretely experience, you wouldn't know that you are implicitly discretely experiencing. However, you may still, even though you don't know you discretely experience, know things that stem from discrete experience. For example, if you conclude that you are seeing a blue ball, even if you don't know you discretely experience, you still know of the blue ball because you have conceptualized the blue ball. Moreover, you could then extrapolate that the blue ball was there prior to you conceptualizing it, but my point is that you wouldn't know that it was there unless you extrapolated it from your conceptualization of the blue ball. If you never would have explicitly known the blue ball, then you would never have known it in the first place. You can't even claim to know something if you haven't, to some degree or another, conceptualized that something.

    I want to be very clear, I do not think there is nothing prior to discrete experience. I also do not think that something that is not a "being" can discretely experience. I believe it is fundamental that there be a "self". One cannot discretely experience without being something.

    Fair enough. I apologize if I portrayed it that way: I never thought you were arguing the contrary.

    But I find that I cannot define the "self" as a fundamental, without first defining discrete experience.

    I agree, but in a slightly different way: the most fundamental in the sense of conceptualized to be the most fundamental is differentiation. But again, you could make claims pertaining to differentiated things all the while never knowing that you discretely experience, and, more importantly, you wouldn't even know you implicitly discretely experience until you know it explicitly. To even try to prove anything, including discrete experience, you must conceptualize it first (to some degree or another). I am trying to state that knowledge doesn't begin its manifestation with differentiation, it begins when it is conceptualized (made explicit).

    Perhaps you can prove this. Can you know something prior to discrete experience?

    I am not entirely sure that it is a proof, because I partially agree with you here, but to claim that discrete experience is implicitly required for all else requires explicit knowledge of such. So, in my head, when we are conversing about when someone knows something, it isn't the extrapolated implicit discrete experience that grants the right "to know it": it is the conceptualization of that contextual thing (or even of another concept--as to know in the abstract requires the conceptualization of such first and foremost as well). I think to say it truly is discrete experience is to operate with a hindsight bias after the fact that the person claiming it has extrapolated the implicit knowledge from the explicit knowledge.

    Can you know what an "I" is before you are able to differentiate between the totality of experience?

    Well, it depends on what you mean by "I". Technically speaking, the "I" isn't necessarily the synonymous with conceptualization. The granting of knowledge is within each context, or avenue. So to know the "I", whatever you are depicting that as, is possible to be known without ever knowing of discrete experience (again, to say the "I" was implicitly discretely experiencing the whole time requires conceptualization of the implicit into something explicit, which is actually how I am able to claim it is the "implicit into something explicit" because I am extrapolating that the implicit must have came before the explicit in order to make sense of it). I get that it seems like I am using discrete experience to attack discrete experience (which is contradictory), but what I am really using is the conceptualized, explicit knowledge I have to base the claim that conceptualization must be the farthest we can derive without beginning extrapolation (this claim in itself is also a conceptualization).

    I know that you can believe such, but can you know it?

    Honestly, I think your argument is plenty strong enough to even claim that you cannot believe it without discretely experiencing. But this is only known after it has been conceptualized.

    Can you know what eyes are? A mind? The difference between your body and another thing? Conscious and unconscious?

    Although I understand and agree with you, oddly enough, I disagree (:. It is only after you have the conceptual knowledge (explicit knowledge) of discrete experience that you can claim that discrete experience was implicitly happening all the while when you previously conceptualized an eye ball. Prior to that, you did not know it (but yet you knew of an eye ball). I think when you say something along the lines of "try to disprove your discrete experiences without using your discrete experiences", I would like to agree (firstly) and (secondly) append "try to disprove or prove discrete experience without ever first conceptualizing it".

    I can't reasonably see how this is possible without the ability to discretely experience

    Again, I think this is hindsight bias: you have explicit knowledge of discrete experience (because you conceptualized it) and, only thereafter, now extrapolate that it was there implicitly all along. Without conceptualization, you wouldn't ever know anything (even if you implicitly discretely experience, for to know that you would have to explicitly conceptualize it first).

    Again, I do believe there is a "self", but I cannot define or even conceive of a self without first discretely experiencing.

    I understand (fair enough). But, again, you could know of a "self" without ever implicitly or explicitly knowing of discrete experience (discrete experience wouldn't be apart of your knowledge collection, so to speak). Therefore, the real contingency of knowledge is conceptualization, not differentiation. The former is utilized to conceive that the latter is logically necessary for all else. It is also a conceptualization.

    On a side note, I would also like to point out that the antonym of "differentiation" is not "nothing", it is "oneness" (cohesion). It isn't necessarily true that you wouldn't exist without differentiation, you may exist as one with everything (therefore terms themselves wouldn't exist for you, but you would exist--in a sense). I would agree with you that, if you were oneness, you wouldn't know anything, but this is due to the lack of conceptualization. I think you are right in the sense that me even claiming "conceptualization", or even conceptualization in itself, is "contingent" on differentiation. However, that statement is a conceptualization first and foremost, and so it is with this statement as well. It all is. Does differentiation come first as an extrapolated truth (whereby it can be equally extrapolated to have been an implicit truth all along), or as the actual spark of manifestation? I think the former.

    An ant can discretely experience. Does it know what an "I" is? Does it know it can discretely experience? No, but it can know things, because it discretely experiences.

    No, within reference to itself, it knows nothing. With reference to you, it knows things. This is because, it isn't about whether it knows it discretely experiences, it is about whether it conceptualizes to any degree. If it does, to contradict what I previously stated, then it knows. It if doesn't, then it doesn't know. But its knowledge has no direct relation to your knowledge of its knowledge. It could very well be the case that it doesn't conceptualize anything, but yet you, being able to conceptualize, deems that it does based off of your conceptualizations of its actions.

    It knows the sugar in front of it is good compared to the dirt that surrounds it.

    Again, you conceptualized this and, therefrom, deemed that ant to know. This doesn't mean that it actually knows anything (maybe it does, maybe it doesn't). Just because it is the most rational position for you, as a being capable of conceptualizing, to hold with reference to the ant, namely that it knows to some degree or another, doesn't mean that in reference to itself that it knows anything at all. It would have to be able to conceptualize something. And, yes, again, me claiming "it must conceptualize something" is contingent on differentiation because all conceptualizations I have had are conceptualized as being contingent on differentiation, therefore I deem it so (and me deeming it so is also a conceptualization). The way I see it, conceptualization is the point of manifestation for everything (including everything), it is the point at which you can quite literally seemingly postulate it ad infinitum recursively (reflexively) (although I don't think it is an actual infinite, only potential). It is where, in my opinion, you truly hit bedrock: where anything below, above, before, after, outside, without, and those very concepts themselves is extrapolated from (conceptualized). In other words, I can conceptualize that I must differentiate, but I hit bedrock (recursive potential infinity) if I try to conceptualize conceptualization, and so forth.

    I think the same thing is true of AI and other beings (to dive a bit into solipsism). To be clear, I am not a solipsist, but I think I may not be one for a different reason than you: I think that the most rational conclusion is that there are other beings like me with reference my conceptualization of them, but that doesn't mean I've proved that they can conceptualize. It only means that via my conceptualizations, the most rational position to hold is that of not being a solipsist. Again, just because I deem another person to know, or even if it is solely based off of risk analysis (which is also a conceptualization)(as in what if I am wrong and choose to be solipsist vs what if I am wrong and choose to respect other people as actually other people), doesn't mean that, in reference to themselves, they actually know anything.

    While "You" must exist to discretely experience, "You" existing does not give you the fundamentals of an epistemology, it is "You" that can discretely experience that does.

    I agree, but this is conceptualized and, thereby, only implicitly known after it is explicitly known. You are right that me existing does not ground an epistemology: it is the ability to conceptualize that very statement that grounds it (and the ability to conceptualize that, and this, and this, etc).

    I discretely experience, because any proposal that I do not discretely experience, is contradicted.

    Again, I think you can only propose this if you are able to conceptualize. First you must have explicit knowledge of this to then extrapolate it as implicit and, therefore, you are extrapolating discrete experience as an implicit truth after you have already gained it as knowledge via explicitly (aka, via conceptualization). I think this is the point at which knowledge is granted, at least initially, or manifested: when it is conceptualized.

    The simple proof I put forward is that to present any counter argument to discretely experiencing, to even understand what it is you are trying to counter, you must discretely experience

    I think I can use that same argument to prove you are right and that that doesn't mean it is the point at which knowledge manifests. In order to even claim that I can't postulate a counter argument without differentiation, you must have a conceptualization (and same for me). I think that they are both deeply integrated into our existence, but one is the point of manifestation (conceptualization), the other is a product of that manifestation that is manifested as a necessity to all else (differentiation). However, although I think you are using A -> A still, I think that you are actually right: there is a point at which it is circular, and that is fine as long as it is the point of all other manifestation. I think that you think that point is differentiation, I think it is conceptualization.

    I hope this cleared up what I'm trying to prove

    I think I understand and I hope that I demonstrated that in my responses. If I didn't fully grasp your views, please, as always, correct me!

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    Great, I think I see where your issue is now, and perhaps I can address is properly.

    Now, I think this leads me to a good point you made: the distinction between knowing something inherently and conceptualizing it. In other words, you don't need to conclude you discretely experience to discretely experience.Bob Ross

    I want to be careful with my words here to communicate this properly. There is no inherent knowledge. You can practice knowledge without knowing that you are doing it. You can have distinctive knowledge. You can even have applicable knowledge. But it is obtained because you are following the steps outlined in the epistemology. You can be blissfully unaware that it is what you are doing, and still have distinctive and applicable knowledge.

    I think there are two different kinds of knowledge that need to be addressed here: implicit and explicit. For example, I can implicitly know that food is necessary for me to survive without explicitly knowing it at all. But once I conceptualize it to whatever degree, then it necessarily becomes explicit knowledge.Bob Ross

    I'm not sure there is implicit knowledge. Knowledge is a process that must be followed to have it. It is a tool. We can measure things as being centimeters long in our minds, but we need an actual measuring stick to say we've measured it. We might get very close with our estimates, but they are not the same as using the tool itself. The same with knowledge.

    Its more like accidental vs explicit. I could find a ruler on the street and not know what cm means. But I do notice there are some lines. I measure something and say its 4 ruler lines. I can safely say within that context, that I have measured length with a ruler. But I don't know its a ruler, or how it was made, or what any of the other symbols and lines mean like inch. Within your first few paragraphs, if you replace "implicit" with "accidental" I think you'll see what I'm trying to point out.

    Knowledge is like the process of measuring. If I am taught how to measure with a ruler, what the lines and symbols mean, and am trained how to line it up properly, or tips of mathematics, then I can explicitly measure with a ruler. The same with knowledge.

    The reason I think this to be incredibly important is that I think you are arguing for discrete experience, at its most fundamental state, as implicit knowledge (that can or cannot be made explicit)(aka discrete experience in itself and not of itself, although the latter is a possibility, the former is a necessity).Bob Ross

    No, I am not. I am not even referring to discrete experience as accidental. You can discretely experience without a theory of knowledge. I am noting that to explicitly know what knowledge is, the first thing you must come to know, is discrete experience. With this, you can build a theory of knowledge. You don't have to know why you discretely experience. Just as I don't have to know the atomic make up of the ruler I am using. I just have to know what consistent spacing is. Of course, that doesn't mean there aren't atoms that make up that ruler. It also doesn't negate the fact that without atoms, there could be no ruler. But the knowledge of atoms is entirely irrelevant to the invention and use of a ruler. So with knowledge.

    Basically, you are claiming (I think) that discrete experience cannot be contradicted because that contradiction also requires discrete experience.Bob Ross

    Yes! I think you have it.

    I am claiming, although that is fine, it is an extrapolation that first had to be conceptualized (explicitly) to then, only thereafter, be considered implicitly true prior to its conceptualization.Bob Ross

    Absolutely correct. Except replace "implicitly" true with "accidently" true.

    Therefore, the conceptualization is required first and foremost in order to ever claim anything ever was implicit previous to something explicitly being known. To know that you think requires that you conceptualized, to some degree, thought itself and then, therefrom, extrapolated you must have been thinking prior to this realization (i.e. implicitly)--my point is that without that explicit conceptualization, you would have never known that you think.Bob Ross

    Correct. (With implicit to accidental conversion). Think of a runner with natural form who has never been taught how to run properly. One day they are taught how to run properly, and it so happens, their natural form is exactly the optimal from needed to run quickly. They did not know what a form was prior to learning this, but once they did, they now realize it was something they did all along without realizing it.

    However, you may still, even though you don't know you discretely experience, know things that stem from discrete experience. For example, if you conclude that you are seeing a blue ball, even if you don't know you discretely experience, you still know of the blue ball because you have conceptualized the blue ball. Moreover, you could then extrapolate that the blue ball was there prior to you conceptualizing it, but my point is that you wouldn't know that it was there unless you extrapolated it from your conceptualization of the blue ball. If you never would have explicitly known the blue ball, then you would never have known it in the first place. You can't even claim to know something if you haven't, to some degree or another, conceptualized that something.Bob Ross

    If you follow the steps of knowledge, it doesn't matter if you know that's what you did. If you conceptualized (discretely experienced) a blue ball within your mind that had clear essential properties to you, then you would distinctively know the blue ball. And I want to reemphases this:

    "You can't even claim to know something if you haven't, to some degree or another, conceptualized (my adjustment: discretely experienced) that something."

    Yes, this is exactly the point I've been making.

    I agree, but in a slightly different way: the most fundamental in the sense of conceptualized to be the most fundamental is differentiation.Bob Ross

    Differentiation, is the act of discretely experiencing. Within the sea of your experience, you are able to say, "This" is not "that".

    To even try to prove anything, including discrete experience, you must conceptualize it first (to some degree or another). I am trying to state that knowledge doesn't begin its manifestation with differentiation, it begins when it is conceptualized (made explicit).Bob Ross

    Once I am able to see "this" is different from "that", I can detail it. What is "this"? Maybe, I can make a word. I can use my memory. I can remember this state, and if I find a state that matches what I remember, I'll say its the same state. "This" is a "ball".

    Once again, I cannot conceptualize without first being able to tell a difference. Or maybe, they are one and the same. Perhaps differentiation at even the lowest level is some type of conceptualization. The point is, these are words that describe acts of discrete experience. Conceptualization about a discrete experience, is a discrete experience that describes another discrete experience. Discrete experience is a fundamental that underlies all of our capabilities to believe and know. Perhaps the use of conceptualization fleshed out will add greater detail and clarity. That is fine. I just wanted to point out that what you are describing, differentiation and conceptualization, are acts of discrete experience.

    I think when you say something along the lines of "try to disprove your discrete experiences without using your discrete experiences", I would like to agree (firstly) and (secondly) append "try to disprove or prove discrete experience without ever first conceptualizing it".Bob Ross

    To me, this is still, "try to disprove or prove discrete experience without ever first conceptualizing it". Discrete experience is a cat. Conceptualization may be a tiger, but its still a cat.

    I want to point out the definition of discrete, and why I chose it. "discrete - individually separate and distinct." I was looking for a fundamental. Something that could describe a situation as a base. I first thought of an eye. An eye does not discretely experience. Its iris opens, and light flood through. The eye cannot tell it sees. It is a tunnel, that has the total experience of its being, but never discerning anything.

    The human brain has many tunnels to it. Eyes, ears, nose, etc. This is the sea of existence, the sea of experience. And yet, it is somehow able to find "things" in the light. It can see things as individually separate and distinct, where an eye cannot. It can distinctly experience sound as separate from light. How? Who knows? It is unimportant for what we are trying to do.

    Let me leave it at this for now. I will come back to the viewpoint of knowledge being applied to non-humans after this part is digested.
    An ant can discretely experience. Does it know what an "I" is? Does it know it can discretely experience? No, but it can know things, because it discretely experiences.

    No, within reference to itself, it knows nothing. With reference to you, it knows things. This is because, it isn't about whether it knows it discretely experiences, it is about whether it conceptualizes to any degree. If it does, to contradict what I previously stated, then it knows. It if doesn't, then it doesn't know. But its knowledge has no direct relation to your knowledge of its knowledge.
    Bob Ross

    Yes, I have to be careful here. The only thing I can truly say is the ant has the "potential" for knowledge if it can discretely experience. It can know things, though it may not process it with intent. Further, its context will never be elevated to that of a human being. The point is, it applicably "knows" dirt shouldn't be eaten, while sugar should. If it did not, it would be constantly testing the dirt if it was hungry. Yet, it doesn't.

    Eating dirt would be contradicted by its death, or its taste buds rejection. It is incredibly primitive, at the core of emotion/sensation, but there is something within the ant that can differentiate between dirt and sugar, and something that prevents it from continually testing dirt to see if it is edible.

    Again, you conceptualized this and, therefrom, deemed that ant to know. This doesn't mean that it actually knows anything (maybe it does, maybe it doesn't). Just because it is the most rational position for you, as a being capable of conceptualizing, to hold with reference to the ant, namely that it knows to some degree or another, doesn't mean that in reference to itself that it knows anything at all.Bob Ross

    This is true. You are correct that I don't really applicably know this. I am making an induction based off of the possibility of my own experience. But is it cogent? I believe it is, and further, in relation to other inductions I can make, I believe it is the most cogent in the hierarchy. I would be in favor of exploring this scientifically, in an attempt to find applicable knowledge from this belief. But I do propose that this is a cogent and worthwhile belief to explore.

    I think that the most rational conclusion is that there are other beings like me with reference my conceptualization of them, but that doesn't mean I've proved that they can conceptualize.Bob Ross

    This could also be true. First, lets try to nail down what conceptualization is at both a distinctive, and applicable level. For my part, if we're talking about the results of something which can discretely experience, have beliefs, and then have knowledge, I believe it is possible. Is there an alternative? We can invent plausibilities on how other creatures use discrete experience, but they are lower on the hierarchy. As such I believe it is more rational to examine the possibilities of how other creatures can know, opposed to the plausibilities of how they could know. Its not that I applicably know other creatures can have knowledge, its just that if they can discretely experience, its possible they could.

    The simple proof I put forward is that to present any counter argument to discretely experiencing, to even understand what it is you are trying to counter, you must discretely experience

    I think I can use that same argument to prove you are right and that that doesn't mean it is the point at which knowledge manifests. In order to even claim that I can't postulate a counter argument without differentiation, you must have a conceptualization (and same for me). I think that they are both deeply integrated into our existence, but one is the point of manifestation (conceptualization), the other is a product of that manifestation that is manifested as a necessity to all else (differentiation). However, although I think you are using A -> A still, I think that you are actually right: there is a point at which it is circular, and that is fine as long as it is the point of all other manifestation. I think that you think that point is differentiation, I think it is conceptualization.
    Bob Ross

    To sum up I think you are under the impression that differentiation and conceptualization are separate identities. I am not disagreeing that you can propose such differentiation. What I am noting is that they are subsumed by both being discrete experiences, and I am unsure where differentiation leaves off and conceptualization begins. Even if it is the case, you still need differentiation before conceptualization. One cannot conceptualize before one can differentiate.

    As such, I still do not believe there is anything circular here. Differentiation does not lead to conceptualization, which leads to differentiation. The order of which we learn about things is also not circular. Saying that examining a ruler leads you to realize you need atoms for a ruler, is not a circular argument. A circular argument is A -> B -> A. What you are arguing with explicit, and what I think more accurately should be called accidental, is not a circular argument. Knowing knowledge is not required to accidentally practice knowledge. If you could try to present your argument that my proposal is circular with an A -> B -> A format, I think I could understand better where you're coming from, and we could settle that issue once and for all.

    As always, fantastic writing. Thanks again and I look forward to hearing your responses!
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    To sum up I think you are under the impression that differentiation and conceptualization are separate identities. I am not disagreeing that you can propose such differentiation. What I am noting is that they are subsumed by both being discrete experiences, and I am unsure where differentiation leaves off and conceptualization begins. Even if it is the case, you still need differentiation before conceptualization. One cannot conceptualize before one can differentiate.

    I think we may, after all, be attempting to convey the same underlying meaning with "conceptualization" and "discrete experience"; however, I find myself in only in partial agreement with what you stated. I think that it would be beneficial for me to define all the terms, their relation to one another, and an elaboration on "knowledge" in general.

    Firstly, here's my interpretation of some of the definitions:

    discrete - individually separate and distinct. (as depicted in your last post)
    differentiation - the act of differentiating (I consider this synonymous with "the act of discretely experiencing"--as something being "discrete" is an instance of differentiation)
    discretely experiencing - the act of differentiating.

    Therefore, given those definitions, I think that your separation of "differentiation" and "conceptualization" as a part of "discrete experience" in your most recent post leads me to believe you may be attempting the same thing I am trying to convey with "conceptualization". As you seem to be using "discrete experience" as something more fundamental than "differentiation", but, where the confusion lies, at the same time, you seem to be also attempting to use them synonymously.

    Once again, I cannot conceptualize without first being able to tell a difference. Or maybe, they are one and the same. Perhaps differentiation at even the lowest level is some type of conceptualization.

    The first sentence seems to be implying you require differentiation in order to do anything else, which, in my head, directly implies differentiation is discrete experience. However, thereafter, you seem to be claiming that "conceptualization" and "differentiation" may be synonymous, and that they are apart of a more fundamental "discrete experience":

    The point is, these are words that describe acts of discrete experience. Conceptualization about a discrete experience, is a discrete experience that describes another discrete experience. Discrete experience is a fundamental that underlies all of our capabilities to believe and know.

    And likewise:

    Differentiation, is the act of discretely experiencing. Within the sea of your experience, you are able to say, "This" is not "that".

    So I am a bit confused if you are arguing for "differentiation" as "discrete experience", or whether that "discrete experience" is more fundamental than "differentiation".

    I think this is a perfect time to elaborate on a couple more terms:

    Concept - A general idea or understanding of something: synonym: idea.
    Conceptualization - The act of manifesting a concept.
    Point of manifestation - the grounds of everything in terms of just chronological precedence (contrary to extrapolated chronological precedence).

    The reason I chose "concept" is that it is a purposely vague manifestation of an idea, which is (I think) the best term I could come up with for conveying a fundamental, rudimentary point of manifestation. It is like a "thought", but not completely analogous: it isn't truly thinking of itself, for that is a recursively obtained concept that one thinks--which is not necessary for a concept to manifest. Likewise, it isn't thinking in itself, because thinking of itself is required for such. Therefore, I call it "conceptualization": the act of manifesting a concept (or concepts). When I use the term "concept", I don't mean high-level discernment of things: all of it is a concept and concepts can be built off of one another. Everything is manifested as a concept, including "differentiation" itself. This may just be me using the term wrong, but I wanted to clarify my use of the term.

    If what you mean by "discretely experience" is "the point of manifestation of everything, including everything itself", then I think we mean the same thing. However, my worry is any implication derived from "discretely" in "discretely experience": any extrapolation that differentiation is the point of manifestation. Notice that my definition here completely lacks any reference to "differentiation" (which, I think, includes "discrete", since it is also the separation of "this" from "that"), as I think it is manifested conceptually by means of the point of manifestation. If this is what you mean by "discretely experience", then we agree (however, I think the use of the term "discrete" in "discretely experience" has unwanted implications then").

    I want to point out the definition of discrete, and why I chose it. "discrete - individually separate and distinct." I was looking for a fundamental. Something that could describe a situation as a base.

    I am fine with your definition of "discrete"; however, when you say "I was looking for a fundamental", are you implying a fundamental that we must conceptualize to deem it so, or the point of manifestation required for that conceptualization in the first place? (the former I would call extrapolated chronological precedence, and the latter is just chronological precedence). I think this is a perfect segue into "knowledge". I don't think there are only either induced or deduced (or distinctive and applicable) knowledge: there is immediately acquired knowledge, mediated deductive knowledge, and mediated inductive knowledge. So when I was previously (in a subsequent post) asking it in the sense of "whether we must extrapolate differentiation, or whether it is the point of manifestation", I think I may have misled you with the term extrapolation; I am not implying that we induce differentiation, I am trying to imply that, once we conceptualize differentiation, we know it not as deduced nor induced but, rather, as immediately acquired knowledge. Let me explain a bit more on those three types of knowledge:

    Of manifestation vs from manifestation of itself - First I need to distinguish these two concepts (which I previously stated as "of itself" vs "in itself", but to resolve some confusion I think these other terms are better). "of manifestation" is as it is presented (its manifestation), whereas "from manifestation" is a form of knowledge either induced or deduced based off of "of manifestation" (that which was presented).

    Immediately acquired knowledge - that which is directly manifested (as a concept, I would argue) and, thereby, is immediately known. I think generally this is the principles of rudimentary logic (so to speak), perception, thought, and emotion of manifestations of themselves and, more importantly, any conceptualizations of manifestations of themselves that may stem from any of the aforementioned. I don't need a tool of knowledge, i.e. an epistemology, to "know" that I differentiate, require a sufficient answer to everything ('sufficient' can vary though), perceive, think, feel, or any form therein (within emotion, I don't need an epistemology to "know" "pain", generally, from "pleasure" of manifestations of themselves).

    Mediated deductive knowledge - that which is deduced based of off immediately acquired knowledge. This, in terms of immediately acquired knowledge, is distinguished by it being from manifestations of themselves in terms of perception, thought, emotion, and any form therein in reference to from a manifestation of itself. For example, I have an immediately acquired knowledge of "emotion" in terms of manifestation of itself, but the conclusion of the concept of "emotion", holistically, required the use of the individual concepts of feeling (such as pain and pleasure) to deduce it (this is "emotion" from manifestation of itself--it is the deduced knowledge which was deduced by the of manifestations of itself). I call it mediated, because, although "emotion" of manifestation and from manifestation of itself are both conceptualized (manifested as a concept), one concept is clearly mediated by the immediate forms of knowledge while the other is, well, immediately known.

    Mediated inductive knowledge - that which is induced based of off immediately acquired knowledge and meditated deductive knowledge. It is essentially the realm of hierarchical inductions. For example, I know "emotion" of manifestations of itself and from manifestations of itself so far, and I can induce why I have "emotion" in the first place (in terms of evolution or biology for example).

    It is important to note that I am claiming that conceptualization is occurring in all three forms of knowledge: these are all manifestations of concepts. However, there's nevertheless a meaningful distinction that can be produced because they are all conceptualized in this necessary hierarchy. For example, mediated knowledge (both forms) adhere and obey the immediately acquired form. Differentiation and the principle of sufficient reason are two great examples of immediately acquired knowledge that is necessarily imposed on all mediated knowledge. The reason why this is the case, as you mentioned, is not the subject of our conversation (as of yet), but merely that it is. They are necessarily imposed because all concepts that conform to the mediated type are always conceptualized, manifested via concept by the point of manifestation, as obeying such. Also, it is important to note that these are in relation to after it is conceptualized. So I am not claiming that you immediately know differentiation is occurring, only that, once it is conceptualized, it necessarily is known and requires no deducing nor inducing.

    So, with this in mind, when you stated:

    I'm not sure there is implicit knowledge. Knowledge is a process that must be followed to have it.

    There is no inherent knowledge. You can practice knowledge without knowing that you are doing it. You can have distinctive knowledge. You can even have applicable knowledge. But it is obtained because you are following the steps outlined in the epistemology. You can be blissfully unaware that it is what you are doing, and still have distinctive and applicable knowledge.

    I think you are 100% right in terms of knowledge as a tool, which I would say is mediated knowledge (it is, therefore, what one can learn). What one can't learn, what one cannot rationalize or reason their way away or towards, is the immediately acquired knowledge. Although I want to emphasize this is all the act of manifesting concepts (i.e. conceptualization), the immediately acquired knowledge isn't conceptualized in terms of deduction or induction (in other words, it is not a concept manifested in relation to other, more primitive or fundamental, concepts) but, rather, it is manifested as the basis--the ultimate bedrock. What I meant by implicit and explicit is more in terms of the relation of some concept being induced or deduced to be occurring prior to its manifestation. For example, when we conceptualize that we must differentiation, then that becomes something that must have been implicitly occurring all the while (i.e. the immediately acquired knowledge of manifestation of itself is utilized to induce, therefore mediated inductive knowledge, that it was occurring all the while--it is not to say that you knew that at the time). I don't think this is what you were referring to with your example of the runner: in terms of knowledge as a tool, thusly mediated forms, i would agree that the runner lucked, or "accidentally", followed the rules of the epistemology. However, and this may be a fundamental disagreement between us, I would state that "knowledge as a tool" (and, thusly, knowledge that can be learned) is a mediated form of knowledge, not all knowledge.

    Its more like accidental vs explicit. I could find a ruler on the street and not know what cm means. But I do notice there are some lines. I measure something and say its 4 ruler lines. I can safely say within that context, that I have measured length with a ruler. But I don't know its a ruler, or how it was made, or what any of the other symbols and lines mean like inch. Within your first few paragraphs, if you replace "implicit" with "accidental" I think you'll see what I'm trying to point out.

    This is with reference to knowledge as a tool and, therefore, mediated forms of knowledge (I'm fine with that). But my point was that you can't induce or deduce any concept as to have been occurring implicitly all the while without it first being explicitly known.

    You can discretely experience without a theory of knowledge. I am noting that to explicitly know what knowledge is, the first thing you must come to know, is discrete experience.

    Your first sentence seems to be sort of aligning with my view of immediately acquired forms of knowledge, I think you just aren't categorizing it as "knowledge". I agree with the second sentence if you are defining "discrete experience" as "the point of manifestation of everything, including everything itself". I would then also like to append that the next step, after "discrete experience", in order to know explicitly what knowledge is, you have to know what "differentiation" is (and things pertaining to such: like the principle of noncontradiction). I think this is generally what you are arguing for, but I think "discrete experience" and "differentiation" are used both synonymously and not synonymously in your statements.

    With this, you can build a theory of knowledge. You don't have to know why you discretely experience. Just as I don't have to know the atomic make up of the ruler I am using. I just have to know what consistent spacing is. Of course, that doesn't mean there aren't atoms that make up that ruler. It also doesn't negate the fact that without atoms, there could be no ruler. But the knowledge of atoms is entirely irrelevant to the invention and use of a ruler. So with knowledge.

    This is true. But I would like to emphasize that even if it is necessarily the case that it is made up of atoms, this is all apart of extrapolated chronological precedence and not just chronological precedence. Yes, I am made of atoms, so in that sense I am derived (one way or another) from those atoms, which necessarily precede me (as a subject, reflexive self that is). However, all of this, including that previously rationalized statement, is derived from the point of manifestation, which manifests certain concepts as necessarily the case (such as our immediately acquired knowledge of differentiation and the principle of noncontradiction). So I would state that with respect to conceptualization, it necessarily follows that I am preceded by atoms. Notice that the conceptualization is required, and is the spring of life (so to speak), of that very extrapolated truth.

    Basically, you are claiming (I think) that discrete experience cannot be contradicted because that contradiction also requires discrete experience. — Bob Ross

    Yes! I think you have it.

    If you agree with me here, then I would like to ask you how you or I derived this? I would say from a manifestation of a concept that is immediately known and is revealed, so to speak, as necessarily true absolutely. To be clear, I'm not asking you to explain why we discretely experience, only how you or I came up with that very claim. Did we just discretely experience it?

    If you conceptualized (discretely experienced) a blue ball within your mind that had clear essential properties to you, then you would distinctively know the blue ball.

    The essential properties themselves are concepts. When you have the belief that there is a blue ball, regardless of whether it is true or not, you know you have that belief. Moreover, if you want to take it a step deeper, if I want to determine whether I still hold a belief, then it will have to applied without contradiction; However, the concept of manifestation of the consideration of whether I still hold a particular belief is not induced nor deduced nor applied: it is immediately acquired. No process or tool of knowledge is required to know that. Likewise, if you are seeing a ball right in front of you, the belief aspect is the mediated deductive knowledge that it is a "blue ball" or mediated inductive knowledge of anything pertaining to the "blue ball", but the immediately acquired knowledge of the perception of the "blue ball" of manifestation of itself is not a belief (nor deduced nor induced).

    "You can't even claim to know something if you haven't, to some degree or another, conceptualized (my adjustment: discretely experienced) that something."

    Yes, this is exactly the point I've been making.

    If you are claiming "discrete experience" is the point of manifestation--not directly differentiation, then we agree. If not, then I don't think you can perform that substitution there.

    Once I am able to see "this" is different from "that", I can detail it.

    You are either deducing or inducing this, which is not immediately acquired knowledge and, most importantly, you first must conceptualize it.

    Discrete experience is a cat. Conceptualization may be a tiger, but its still a cat.

    A cat and a tiger are concepts. Again, I think we may be trying to utilize the same underlying meaning here, but I'm trying to understand if you are saying the fundamental base is differentiation, or if it is a separate, more fundamental, discrete experience.

    If you could try to present your argument that my proposal is circular with an A -> B -> A format, I think I could understand better where you're coming from, and we could settle that issue once and for all.

    Here's my understanding of circular arguments:

    1. Posited inquiry
    2. Justified explanation for 1
    3. Posited inquiry of that justification used in 2
    4. Justified with 1

    So, essentially, it is 1 -> 1 (or A -> A). Let me attempt an example:

    1. Posited inquiry: Is the bible true?
    2. Justified explanation: Yes, God says so.
    3. Posited inquiry of 2: How do we know God tells the truth?
    4. The bible says so

    1 -> ... -> 4 is actually just 1 -> 1. So I think it is with discrete experience in relation to reasoning:

    1. Posited inquiry: Do we discretely experience?
    2. Justified explanation: Yes, because reasoning deems it so (i.e. I cannot conceive without the use of discrete experience)
    3. Posited inquiry of 2: How do we know reasoning is a valid means of acquiring such knowledge?
    4. Because we discretely experience, and that is all that is required to begin our epistemic exploration.

    1 -> ... -> 4 is actually just 1 -> 1. I think that if you are using "discrete experience" in the same manner that I am using "conceptualization", as previously defined, then it isn't circular as it is the basis of reasoning itself, which isn't differentiation I would say. I think you may be arguing for this kind of thing with discrete experience but yet still implying differentiation in there a bit.

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    Absolutely spot on post Bob. I think we're on the same page here, and I have to compliment you greatly for trying to refine what I am stating.

    My theory is what we'll call, elementary, and general. The point is to widely capture certain broad concepts, and show how they interact with each other. Discrete experience could be noted as a general word with very clear, but basic essential properties. Its as if I'm using the word "tree" to describe all plants that are made up of wood. You are coming along and noting, "Aren't trees tall and have on e trunk? What about this bush has a couple of trunks and is short?" You and I are not in any disagreement.

    Essentially I am in an incredibly broad context, while you are trying to narrow and detail it. It is excellent. Let me address you're points and see if I can show how we're on the same page.

    As you seem to be using "discrete experience" as something more fundamental than "differentiation", but, where the confusion lies, at the same time, you seem to be also attempting to use them synonymously.Bob Ross

    A pine tree and an oak tree are different trees. But they are still trees. Discrete experience is a tree. Differentiation an oak tree. Conceptualization is a pine tree. At the end of the day, they are both trees. For a certain context, identifying types of trees is not important. For example, when first introducing what a tree is. But then, a curious mind might say, "But isn't there a difference between an oak and a pine tree?" Yes. Yet both are still trees. And this is what I'm noting with differentiation and conceptualization. They are both still at their core, discrete experiences.

    The reason I chose "concept" is that it is a purposely vague manifestation of an idea, which is (I think) the best term I could come up with for conveying a fundamental, rudimentary point of manifestation. It is like a "thought", but not completely analogous: it isn't truly thinking of itself, for that is a recursively obtained concept that one thinks--which is not necessary for a concept to manifest. Likewise, it isn't thinking in itself, because thinking of itself is required for such. Therefore, I call it "conceptualization": the act of manifesting a concept (or concepts). When I use the term "concept", I don't mean high-level discernment of things: all of it is a concept and concepts can be built off of one another. Everything is manifested as a concept, including "differentiation" itself. This may just be me using the term wrong, but I wanted to clarify my use of the term.Bob Ross

    If conceptualization is useful as a word, then simply follow the process. Discretely experience the word in your mind. Make it have essential properties that are non-synonymous, or distinct enough from another word as to be useful so that it is distinctive knowledge. Then, apply it to reality without contradiction. If you can do it once, then you have applicable knowledge that such a word is useful in reality.

    It is not that I disagree with your attempt at proposing conceptualization. For my purposes, I have clear and broadly defined words that follow the process of knowledge. From discrete experience, I define thoughts, sensations, and memory. Then I apply them to reality. The issue with your current definition of conceptualization, is it isn't clear enough to show how it is separate enough from other useful words that can be applied to reality, and I'm not sure you've successfully applied it to reality yet without contradiction.

    But, I understand the intuition. There does seem to be something different from the act of first identifying "this" from "that", then adding a concept to it. For my purposes, its just a definition. But perhaps "conceptualization" covers that which is not yet clear enough from the definitions used so far. In a way, it is not a discrete experience, but a fuzzy experience. It is not clearly cut out of the sea of existence, but a murky pair of binoculars that you are trying to focus into view. For my initial purposes, I did not dwell on this concept, because it did not help me get to the end. This was the refinement I thought others would introduce. So please do not take my notes as discouragement. Continue please. I just think the clarity isn't quite there yet on the definition, so lets keep trying!

    I am fine with your definition of "discrete"; however, when you say "I was looking for a fundamental", are you implying a fundamental that we must conceptualize to deem it so, or the point of manifestation required for that conceptualization in the first place?Bob Ross

    No. I was looking for a fundamental to describe the reason why we are not like an eyeball or a camera. "Fundamental" in this case is trying to come up with a concept that does not depend or minimizes anything within its constituent parts to understand it. It is why I note we do not need to know why we discretely experience, it is simply an undeniable fundamental that we do. We are not beings that simply take in all existence at once without the capability of creating distinction within it. We are able to take that mess of sensation and thoughts, and create distinction. That is what I call discrete experience. Perhaps the word "discrete" is too strong to describe the different levels of distinction we can create. It is more like a fuzzy separation that we can continue to focus until we are at a comfortable enough level that it is useful to us. The attempt to describe this level of acceptable focus to an individual is "context".

    I think this is a perfect segue into "knowledge". I don't think there are only either induced or deduced (or distinctive and applicable) knowledge: there is immediately acquired knowledge, mediated deductive knowledge, and mediated inductive knowledge.Bob Ross

    Immediately acquired knowledge - that which is directly manifested (as a concept, I would argue) and, thereby, is immediately known.Bob Ross

    This is simply a discrete experience as I describe it. "This" is not "that" is known by fact, because it is not contradicted. Of course, how do we know that a contradiction means it cannot be known? Because "This" cannot be separate from "That" if "This" is also identical to "That". It is a fundamental of discrete experience. To have a blend of something that you cannot discretely experience, means it is part of the sea of existence. Are the desk and keyboard in front of you both 100% separate and 100% not separate? If this were the case, you could not discretely experience them. At best, you can make a new word that describes both concepts together.

    As I've noted earlier, math is the logic of discrete experience, which all starts with the identification of a "this" (1) the ability to group more than one "this" together (2), equality of discrete experience, and inequality of discrete experience.

    (Immediately acquired knowledge continued) perception, thought, and emotion of manifestations of themselvesBob Ross

    All are discrete experiences. Or as mentioned earlier, "fuzzy experiences" that we can focus into greater clarity. We can create definitions to bring focus to those concepts, but the act of those concepts themselves does not require a definition to occur. If I am experiencing the emotion of happiness, one may question the degree or where it fits into my greater outlook on the world, but may not question the fact that currently, that is what I'm discretely experiencing itself.

    and, more importantly, any conceptualizations of manifestations of themselves that may stem from any of the aforementioned.Bob Ross

    If you mean, "I experience "happiness" and now I'm going to create a new term called "happiness" to describe it," then yes.

    Mediated deductive knowledge - that which is deduced based of off immediately acquired knowledge.Bob Ross

    For example, I have an immediately acquired knowledge of "emotion" in terms of manifestation of itself, but the conclusion of the concept of "emotion", holistically, required the use of the individual concepts of feeling (such as pain and pleasure) to deduce it (this is "emotion" from manifestation of itself--it is the deduced knowledge which was deduced by the of manifestations of itself). I call it mediated, because, although "emotion" of manifestation and from manifestation of itself are both conceptualized (manifested as a concept), one concept is clearly mediated by the immediate forms of knowledge while the other is, well, immediately known.Bob Ross

    I believe you've blended implicity knowledge and mediated knowledge here. I noted that I can create "distinctions about distinctions". I can see a sea of grass, a blade of grass, and a piece of grass. I can see happiness as great, average, and little. But let me see if I can address what you were intending to say. I can define and refine happiness in relation to other emotions. Lets say I have defined three emotions, pain, excitement, and happiness. I feel an emotion. It does not meet the standard for pain or excitement. If I am non-inventive and do not feel like creating another identity, it must logically be happiness. Of course, if it is nothing like any happiness I've experienced before, I must adjust my definition of happiness to now accommodate this state.

    This level of thinking is distinctive knowledge. The question after you realize you discretely experience is, "How do I know I discretely experience?" You try to contradict it. And as I've noted before, you cannot. With this, you can discretely experience whatever you like as long as it follows a few rules. It must be a distinct discrete experience that is in some way different from other discrete experiences in your head to avoid being a synonym, and it must not be contradicted by other discrete experiences you hold in your head.

    Applicable knowledge is merely an application of this rule. In essence, you can applicably know the distinctive knowledge in your head. The reason I've made a distinction, is applicable knowledge as a concept is useful in regards to reality, or "that which does not necessarily correlate with my discrete experiences". Distinctive knowledge is the world entirely in your own head. You can do whatever you want. But there is this situation of having things happen that are outside of the control or opinion of your head. Define a rotten apple as healthy, but you will still grow sick and possibly die.

    And of course we've covered inductions in depth. The reason why I wanted to go over your definitions, is underlying those concepts, are my concepts. Lets not even say underlying. Concurrently is probably better. My context and definitions serve a particular purpose, while yours serve another. The question is, while your definitions can be distinctively know, can they be applicably known? I am not saying they cannot, they just haven't really been put to the test yet.

    I think the question between us, and why you've proposed a different set of definitions is because you want something that the current definitions I've used, does not give you. It is not that the context I've provided is logically incorrect, it is I believe in your mind, logically inadequate. You want greater refinement and clarity to fuzzy distinctions you feel intuitively. And that is wonderful.

    If I had to sum up what you are looking for, I think the real difference in our outlooks is that fundamental start. I don't think we disagree broadly, only in clarity and the necessity of new words in the specifics. As such, I will present some challenges to your terms that are not negations, but considerations.

    Why did I separate the act of discrete experience from knowledge? Because as you agree, knowledge is a tool. A tool is an invention that we build from other things that allows us to manipulate and reason about the world in a better way. Discrete experience is a natural part of our existence. Knowledge is a tool built from that natural part of our existence. It is the fundamental which helps to explain what knowledge is.

    When you use the term, "implicit knowledge", this overlaps with having discrete experiences. But this leaves you open to a question. How do you know its knowledge? Knowledge is now integrated into the description of a natural experience. It is no longer a tool, but the source itself. How then do I separate knowledge from a belief? If I can have knowledge that is a tool, and knowledge that is not a tool, isn't that an essential enough property for separating the concepts into two different concepts? Does the definition you use increase clarity, or cause confusion?

    This of course, is a critique which can be applied to my own concepts. Is discrete experience as a broadly defined word a good term that has clear essential properties and does not muddle the water? Can we break it down into greater distinctions that will capture the overall goal of the knowledge theory, but makes it easy to comprehend and accessible to others? But I have to be careful. Too detailed, and it can quickly address unimportant details that aren't important to the overall concept. Too broad and it can be misapplied.

    The goal here is to apply just the correct amount of logically consistent terms that are not too separate from our current way of speaking and understanding. It must have the right amount of detail to be applicable in daily life, but also open to refinement for deeper questions. What you are doing right now is seeking that refinement. But I do not think at this point that there is any disagreement with the overall structure. The basic methodology is still applied to the terms you propose. With that, continue to refine.

    But the knowledge of atoms is entirely irrelevant to the invention and use of a ruler. So with knowledge.

    This is true. But I would like to emphasize that even if it is necessarily the case that it is made up of atoms, this is all apart of extrapolated chronological precedence and not just chronological precedence.
    Bob Ross

    If I am understanding your terms of chronology correctly, I would argue that it is both. It is necessary that atoms exist for the ruler to exist, whether you know it or not. You can also extrapolate that atoms are necessary for the ruler to exist later. But does the existence of atoms, or the knowledge of atoms have any import into how you use a ruler? No.

    So I would state that with respect to conceptualization, it necessarily follows that I am preceded by atoms.Bob Ross

    I believe this is a conclusion of applicable knowledge, not simply distinctive knowledge or merely discrete experience.

    Basically, you are claiming (I think) that discrete experience cannot be contradicted because that contradiction also requires discrete experience. — Bob Ross

    Yes! I think you have it.

    If you agree with me here, then I would like to ask you how you or I derived this? I would say from a manifestation of a concept that is immediately known and is revealed, so to speak, as necessarily true absolutely. To be clear, I'm not asking you to explain why we discretely experience, only how you or I came up with that very claim. Did we just discretely experience it?
    Bob Ross

    A great question. Short answer? Yes. Long answer? It is the logic we derive from the ability to discretely experience. As I mentioned before, we cannot discretely experience a contradiction. Because experiencing a contradiction, in the very real sense of experiencing something as 100% identical and both 100% not identical to another concept is something we cannot experience. But lets say we could experience it. It would not be applicably known. It would not be distinctively known. It is beyond our ability to comprehend or experience as something knowable. It cannot be discretely experienced, but would be some other type of experience. Therefore it would be outside of the realm of comprehension and knowledge.

    If you conceptualized (discretely experienced) a blue ball within your mind that had clear essential properties to you, then you would distinctively know the blue ball.

    The essential properties themselves are concepts. When you have the belief that there is a blue ball, regardless of whether it is true or not, you know you have that belief. Moreover, if you want to take it a step deeper, if I want to determine whether I still hold a belief, then it will have to applied without contradiction; However, the concept of manifestation of the consideration of whether I still hold a particular belief is not induced nor deduced nor applied: it is immediately acquired. No process or tool of knowledge is required to know that. Likewise, if you are seeing a ball right in front of you, the belief aspect is the mediated deductive knowledge that it is a "blue ball" or mediated inductive knowledge of anything pertaining to the "blue ball", but the immediately acquired knowledge of the perception of the "blue ball" of manifestation of itself is not a belief (nor deduced nor induced).
    Bob Ross

    This touches on the issue I noted earlier with the idea of "implicit knowledge". You can discretely experience whatever you want. You know you can, because you have deduced it logically without contradiction. The tool of knowledge is the logic of concluding our distinctions are not contradicted by reality. We do not have to have knowledge to have distinctions that are not contradicted by reality. We do not have to know why we do what we do. But when we attempt to describe why, knowledge is the tool that gives us the best chance of determining whether our distinctions are not contradicted by reality. When you state that the act of having discrete experiences is the act of knowledge itself, the word knowledge becomes muddled and runs into issues.

    Another thing to consider is your terms are causing you to construct sentences that are difficult to grasp their meaning (not that I am not guilty of this too!) "The concept of the manifestation of the consideration". This seems verbose and I'm having difficulty seeing the words as clearly defined identities that help me understand what is trying to be stated here. I can replace that entire sentence with, "However, the discrete experience of whether I hold a particular belief is not induced, nor deduced, nor applied, it is immediately acquired." It is something we simply do.

    "You can't even claim to know something if you haven't, to some degree or another, conceptualized (my adjustment: discretely experienced) that something."

    Yes, this is exactly the point I've been making.

    If you are claiming "discrete experience" is the point of manifestation--not directly differentiation, then we agree. If not, then I don't think you can perform that substitution there.
    Bob Ross

    No, I am not using the terms manifestation or conceptualization. I'm not saying you can't. Those are your terms, and if you have contradictions or issues with them, it is for you to sort out. All I am saying is if a being can't part and parcel the sea of existence, it lacks a fundamental capability required to form knowledge.

    Finally, let me address the proofs.

    The bible proof doesn't quite capture circular logic. It is not 1 -> 1 Symbols in logic are meant to be 100% separate from other symbols conceptually. 1 is not the same as .999999 The bible and God are clearly distinct entities, and not equivalent.

    So, we propose A
    We say, If and only if A -> B
    Then we say, If and only if B -> A.

    So our only proof for God's existence is that the bible tells us, and the only proof for the bible's truth, is that God tells us. That is circular.

    My argument is not a circular logic, but fundamental.

    Lets compare this to a simple proof, the logic of a bachelor.

    1. A bachelor is an unmarried man.
    2. The possible contradiction to a person being a bachelor, is if they are not a man, or are not married.
    3. Joe is both unmarried and a man.
    4. Therefore he is a bachelor.

    The above is not circular, it is a logical conclusion from the definitions proposed. Lets look at mine again.

    1. Discrete experience is the ability to have distinct differences within the totality of your experience.
    2. The contradiction to this, is if you cannot comprehend distinctions within the totality of your experience.
    3. To read and comprehend these words, you must be able to comprehend distinctions within existence.
    4. If you are reading and comprehending these words, then you have the ability to comprehend distinctions within existence.
    4. Therefore you discretely experience.

    Thanks again Bob, let me know what you think as always.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    A pine tree and an oak tree are different trees. But they are still trees. Discrete experience is a tree. Differentiation an oak tree. Conceptualization is a pine tree. At the end of the day, they are both trees.

    If I am understanding your analogy correctly, then I would say (1) you are agreeing with me that discrete experience is not synonymous with differentiation (oak tree is derived from a tree) and (2) I would say, with respect to what I am attempting to convey, conceptualization would be a tree (not a pine tree). With respect to 2, this leads me to agree with you that we are essentially in agreement with one another; however, I am hesitant to completely agree with you as 1 directly entails to me that the fundamental is not differentiating "this" from "that", which I generally think your epistemology begins with such (that and the principle of noncontradiction). When you say "tree", in this analogy, I am arguing it is specifically not differentiation: it is the point of manifestation (and I think there is a difference). When I read your essays, "discrete" in "discrete experience" tended to be implying differentiation is the tree: maybe I just misunderstood you.

    For a certain context, identifying types of trees is not important.

    I agree, but I wouldn't constitute conceptualization as a pine tree, it would be the tree. Most notably, it would not be anything directly pertaining to a "discrete" anything.

    And this is what I'm noting with differentiation and conceptualization. They are both still at their core, discrete experiences.

    Again, I am interpreting this (1) as agreeing discrete experience is not differentiation directly (in that case, why use the term "discrete" if not to imply differentiation as apart of the fundamental) and (2) I think the ability, or act, of discretely (in the sense of differentiation) experiencing things comes after the experience itself. You first have a manifestation, an interpretation, and then, only after, can it be concluded that one necessarily discretely experiences. I think you may be attempting to use the term "discrete experience" synonymous with my attempted use of "conceptualization", however I find "discrete experience" to have confusing, almost contradictory, implications (no offense).

    If conceptualization is useful as a word, then simply follow the process. Discretely experience the word in your mind. Make it have essential properties that are non-synonymous, or distinct enough from another word as to be useful so that it is distinctive knowledge. Then, apply it to reality without contradiction. If you can do it once, then you have applicable knowledge that such a word is useful in reality.

    I think this is another big difference between us both: I don't think you can apply a tool of knowledge to that which is immediately known. I think you are attempting to acquire, holistically, all the knowledge you can claim to have via a tool: I don't think it makes sense to claim you can "know" something via a tool, yet you "do not know" the manifestations that were required for the tool of knowledge in the first place. Now here's where it gets a bit complicated (and you are right to point out my confusing terminology), because there's a difference between the manifestations and anything built off of those manifestations. For example, when I state that you "do not know" the manifestations that were required for the tool of knowledge in the first place, I am not referring to anything concluded to precede that tool of knowledge; in other words, a concluded manifestor by means of the manifestations. I think this is what you were meaning by the "I" and how it doesn't constitute knowledge: a concept of a manifestor must be subject to the tool of knowledge. We are in no disagreement there. However, the manifestations themselves are necessarily not subject to the tool of knowledge: it is the point of absolutely no movement (metaphorically speaking)(point of manifestation). It is the point of neither deduction nor induction, it is given. However, to emphasize this a bit more, when I state "it is given", I am doing so without conceding a giver. A giver would (metaphorically speaking) require movement and, therefore, would be subject to the tool of knowledge. I wanted to try and make that clear, first and foremost, that the division I am seeking is that of no movement vs movement, all of which is "knowledge"--but the former is given (with restraint from conceding a giver) while the other is obtained (via a tool of knowledge). So, with that in mind, I think you are not addressing my point here (and it is not your fault, I am doing a poor job of explaining it), which is self-evident to me due to you attempting to apply it. Anything applied is subject to the tool of knowledge. Conceptualization is not subject to such: it is absolutely no movement.

    From discrete experience, I define thoughts, sensations, and memory. Then I apply them to reality.

    Again, I think we agree that we can't apply discrete experience to reality because it is reality. However, if that is the case, I don't see how we could logically attribute something acquired via it as knowledge without conceding it is itself knowledge. Also, although you can apply thoughts, sensations, and memory to reality, you don't obtain that you know of them themselves and, thusly, cannot (not just do not) apply them to anything. It is like, you can apply a belief to reality to see if it stands, but necessarily without application you "know" you have a belief. I'm not sure if we are in agreement here or not. In other words, there are two aspects to those terms (thoughts, sensations, and memory), you are right with respect to one aspect, but I think you are disregarding the other.

    The issue with your current definition of conceptualization, is it isn't clear enough to show how it is separate enough from other useful words that can be applied to reality, and I'm not sure you've successfully applied it to reality yet without contradiction.

    I think, again, the confusion lies in the fact that I will never attempt, nor can I, to apply it to reality.

    There does seem to be something different from the act of first identifying "this" from "that", then adding a concept to it.

    For clarification purposes, I am not married to the term "conceptualization", it is just the best term I've come up with so far. But conceptualization is the identification that is the point of no movement I am trying to convey. "something different from the act of first identifying "this" from "that"" requires movement. I'm not really trying to address it in the sense of "well I have this discrete experience, let me induce/deduce a useful concept out of it". I am more trying to address it in the sense of the actual manifestation in the first place (without initially conceding a "manifestor")(without ever initially conceding a differentiation of "this" from "that"). I think you are more arguing that this cannot be done, namely without conceding differentiating "this" from "that", and that is where I think we mainly differ.

    So please do not take my notes as discouragement. Continue please. I just think the clarity isn't quite there yet on the definition, so lets keep trying!

    I completely understand: fair enough! I've been definitely making things more confusing, and I apologize, I'm trying to make it simpler, but haven't quite gotten there yet.

    It is why I note we do not need to know why we discretely experience, it is simply an undeniable fundamental that we do.

    This is fair and true. However, I would like to emphasize it is "an undeniable fundamental" (as in one of many, of which are not the fundamental in terms of the point of all manifestation) and thusly is derived from the manifestations themselves, the point of no movement, the point of manifestation, without conceding a manifestor, interpreter, etc (as those would be subject to the tool of knowledge to obtain it).

    This is simply a discrete experience as I describe it. "This" is not "that" is known by fact, because it is not contradicted.

    I would ask, how are you able to state it is not contradicted? Because the point of manifestation is cognitive in a sense; in other words, this is derived from a point of manifestation. "this" is not "that" is known because it is an immediately given, you seem to still be claiming you are applying it without contradiction, and that is how you have obtained it as known. I would say you necessarily cannot apply it, it is what you apply to. I think your use of the principle of noncontradiction is simply assumed, but I think it actually exposes the true point of no movement. You are first utilizing something that necessarily derives everything else: this is not the differentiation of "this" from "that", it is what allows for "this" is not "that" (without conceding an allower).

    Are the desk and keyboard in front of you both 100% separate and 100% not separate? If this were the case, you could not discretely experience them. At best, you can make a new word that describes both concepts together.

    I agree, but I would argue you are using the fundamental, point of manifestation, which dictates (without conceding a dictator) the necessity of the principle of noncontradiction. It isn't differentiation itself, nor the ability to "discretely experience" (in terms of the use of "discrete").

    The question after you realize you discretely experience is, "How do I know I discretely experience?" You try to contradict it. And as I've noted before, you cannot.

    Again, the question itself, the act of attempting to contradict it, and the realization is all "the tree", it is the point of manifestation, the point of zero movement. That is the fundamental of everything. This is why I would argue you can't actually even try to contradict it, it's just the fact that nothing happens that makes us feel like we successfully passed it through a test, but the manifestation of the "test" itself is what we were trying to pass through. It cannot be done. It is no different than trying to justify the principle of noncontradiction by trying to contradict it, it literally cannot occur (even as an attempt).

    With this, you can discretely experience whatever you like as long as it follows a few rules. It must be a distinct discrete experience that is in some way different from other discrete experiences in your head to avoid being a synonym, and it must not be contradicted by other discrete experiences you hold in your head.

    I agree, but these rules themselves require movement, which is derived from the point of no movement. They are manifestations which require a point of manifestation. Without conceding a mover or manifestor initially, as that would be subject to the tool of knowledge to be either rejected or obtained. It is essentially a thing recursively exploring itself, using it's own manifestations and rules to determine it has manifestations and rules.

    And of course we've covered inductions in depth. The reason why I wanted to go over your definitions, is underlying those concepts, are my concepts. Lets not even say underlying. Concurrently is probably better. My context and definitions serve a particular purpose, while yours serve another. The question is, while your definitions can be distinctively know, can they be applicably known? I am not saying they cannot, they just haven't really been put to the test yet.

    I am hesitant to say we are meaning the same exact thing, or that I am implicitly holistically using your epistemology yet, because I think you are still determining knowledge to be holistically that which must be tested. I am never going to test what is immediately known. And, likewise, I would consider just as much knowledge as any tool of knowledge we can conceive of. Although I may just be misunderstanding you, I am not attempting to apply your tool knowledge to the point of no movement, the point of manifestations. Also, I am only in agreement with you on "applying to reality without contradiction" if we are using "reality" in the sense of holistically all experience (which I think you are arguing for, but just wanted to clarify). Your thoughts are enough to create mathematics (in a general sense, obviously not for the derivation of math equations that pertain to things that must be seen in order to make sense of it, but math, as being the discrete logic, requires nothing but differentiation--I don't need to see "this" from "that").

    Again, I would be hesitant to state we are concurrent, because I am only agreeing with you in the sense of the tool of knowledge, which is not holistically knowledge (I would argue). You seem to be even attempting to apply our terms to a test, which I am saying there is such a thing as a known untestable piece of knowledge (specifically one: the test itself, not that which tests--again, not conceding a tester, just the test itself so to speak). I don't think we are in agreement about that.

    Why did I separate the act of discrete experience from knowledge? Because as you agree, knowledge is a tool. A tool is an invention that we build from other things that allows us to manipulate and reason about the world in a better way. Discrete experience is a natural part of our existence. Knowledge is a tool built from that natural part of our existence. It is the fundamental which helps to explain what knowledge is.

    Hopefully I've demonstrated that I do not think this is holistically the case. When I say "knowledge as a tool", I am meaning it as one subtype out of two distinct types. I don't see how someone could logically claim to "know" something by means of obtaining it from a tool, but yet equally claim they "do not know" that which it is built off of (again, not an interpreter, but the mere interpretation itself). I also find it wrong to claim to "know" you discretely experience by means of applying it. Likewise, that you know you hold a belief (not pertaining to the truth of the content of such), or that you know that immediate perception, thought, emotion, etc. It seems like you aren't granting these as known, or you are attempting to pass them through the tool to obtain them as knowledge (which I think you are incapable of such, we are incapable of such).

    How do you know its knowledge?

    My point is that you are immediately given, granted, the knowledge that you "know" that you are questioning how you know its knowledge. I am in agreement with you that a tool would be required to evaluate the truth of the content, so to speak, of the question itself, but not the question as immediately manifested.

    It is no longer a tool, but the source itself.

    Again, I want to careful with "source itself". In terms of movement, anything concluded, such as a source in the sense of an interpreter or manifestor, is subject to the tool. I am in agreement with you on that. However, the "source" as the immediate manifestations themselves, this is just known. And I don't think it would make logical sense to claim we can know something if the latter definition of "source" isn't known. So in a sense, you are right, in another sense, you are wrong (it is the "source" and tool, but not in the sense of any sort of movement).

    How then do I separate knowledge from a belief? If I can have knowledge that is a tool, and knowledge that is not a tool, isn't that an essential enough property for separating the concepts into two different concepts?

    Again, to determine the truth in terms of the content, or proposition, of a belief, it requires a tool. But you immediately know that you are having a belief as it was immediately manifested as such. In other words, the belief that there is a red squirrel in my room would require a tool of knowledge to obtain whether it is true or false, but the belief itself (as a belief) is necessarily known immediately. This doesn't erode the distinction between knowledge and the content of a belief. You can have a proposition you don't immediately know while still knowing that the very manifestation of the proposition itself is true (i.e. I don't immediately know if there is a red squirrel, but it is true that the belief--the proposition--has occurred to me). Likewise, I would say that the propositions in our thoughts, also called beliefs, are distinguished from knowledge, however the thought itself is necessarily a true fact (and thus known). Not that the proposition is true, but that the fact that there is a proposition is necessarily true.

    Does the definition you use increase clarity, or cause confusion?

    It most definitely creates more confusion and fair enough! And so, if the objective is to try to portray as much as possible for the masses, then it may very well be useful to start simply with the fact that we differentiate. Fair enough, however, I don't think, in terms of philosophy, our goal should be to just simplify positions due to it sometimes becoming an oversimplification--a lot of philosophical principles and achievements necessarily required at least some complex elaboration. I'm trying to say that starting with differentiation may be a necessarily false presupposition that can be used to better portray the epistemology as a whole to the masses. Fair enough.

    Too detailed, and it can quickly address unimportant details that aren't important to the overall concept. Too broad and it can be misapplied.

    Absolutely fair enough! It is definitely a trade off, but I am more trying to attempt this from what is the fundamental and not how to get the most conveyed to the most people. I think both are worthy considerations.

    What you are doing right now is seeking that refinement. But I do not think at this point that there is any disagreement with the overall structure. The basic methodology is still applied to the terms you propose.

    Again, I am hesitant here to agree. For these reasons:

    1. You seem to be deriving from differentiation, not the point of manifestation
    2. You seem to be claiming knowledge is strictly obtained and never given without conceding a giver

    I don't think I can really say I subscribe to your epistemology with such fundamental differences. I think you are more speaking in terms of once we are discussing the tool of knowledge, differentiation, and the principle of noncontradiction, then we generally agree and, thereby, I am subscribed in that sense.

    I would argue that it is both. It is necessary that atoms exist for the ruler to exist, whether you know it or not.

    I would like to careful here as well, it seems to be implying an "objective" reality that is an absolute reality (that which is not contingent on the subject). When I state "objective" reality, it is still in relation, and thus contingent to a degree, to the subject. It is necessary that atoms exist for the ruler to exist within the constraints of what has been manifested for you as the subject. We cannot claim beyond that.

    I believe this is a conclusion of applicable knowledge, not simply distinctive knowledge or merely discrete experience.

    This is true, but not in relation to an absolute "objective" reality. However, as you probably agree, it is not strictly applicable knowledge either: it is a combination as it all stems from those rules and the point of manifestation (what you would call discrete experience, which I would argue isn't sounding synonymous to me yet).

    As I mentioned before, we cannot discretely experience a contradiction. Because experiencing a contradiction, in the very real sense of experiencing something as 100% identical and both 100% not identical to another concept is something we cannot experience.

    Again, this isn't because we applied the principle of noncontradiction and found it not to contradict, therefore we obtained such knowledge, we simply "know" it because it is manifested necessarily that way. It is no different, I would say, to trying to legitimately apply the principle of noncontradiction on itself. I don't think it makes sense to constitute knowledge as strictly what has been applied (which implies strictly that which can be applied). Don't get me wrong, there is a very real sense where you are right, we can make up plausibilities that are inapplicable (which I would argue are irrational inductions), and that will never constitute knowledge. But there is a difference between something we moved to in our reasoning that cannot be applied and the reasoning itself which cannot be applied. These, in my head, are not the same "cannot be applied".

    You can discretely experience whatever you want. You know you can, because you have deduced it logically without contradiction.

    Although I understand what you are stating, and I agree in a sense, those two statements contradict each other. Also, it exposes the fact that of the manifestations and the seemingly necessary contingency (which is also a manifestation) of the principle of non-contradiction.

    This leads me to another point, "reality" isn't just object, it is also subject. The thoughts themselves are apart of reality. When you "apply" your thoughts, strictly in the abstract, you are "applying to reality" without contradiction because the principle of noncontradiction is ingrained in us.

    Another thing to consider is your terms are causing you to construct sentences that are difficult to grasp their meaning (not that I am not guilty of this too!) "The concept of the manifestation of the consideration". This seems verbose and I'm having difficulty seeing the words as clearly defined identities that help me understand what is trying to be stated here. I can replace that entire sentence with, "However, the discrete experience of whether I hold a particular belief is not induced, nor deduced, nor applied, it is immediately acquired." It is something we simply do.

    Fair enough! However, I would say that your insertion of "discrete experience" necessarily erodes some of the meaning away, albeit my definitions aren't very good at all.

    "You can't even claim to know something if you haven't, to some degree or another, conceptualized (my adjustment: discretely experienced) that something."

    Yes, this is exactly the point I've been making.

    If you are claiming "discrete experience" is the point of manifestation--not directly differentiation, then we agree. If not, then I don't think you can perform that substitution there. — Bob Ross


    No, I am not using the terms manifestation or conceptualization. I'm not saying you can't. Those are your terms, and if you have contradictions or issues with them, it is for you to sort out. All I am saying is if a being can't part and parcel the sea of existence, it lacks a fundamental capability required to form knowledge.

    I am honestly not quite following your response here. It seems like you didn't really answer question but, instead, referred it back to me. Either you agree that "discrete experience" is synonymous with the "point of manifestation and not directly differentiation", or you don't. I am just simply trying to understand whether you are attempting the same thing I am with the term "discrete experience", or whether you are not. Again, when you say "a being can't part and parcel the sea of existence", you are implying "differentiation" is "discrete experience", which is not what I am trying to convey. Also, the "sea of existence" seems to me to be implying, again, an absolute reality which is considered "objective". In other words, the subject is parsing the "sea of existence". It isn't that I am arguing the subject is the sea of existence, or that the sea of existence doesn't exist, but it is that we only view it as the sea of existence from what actually is existence: the manifestations themselves. We only induce there is sea of existence from, not that which induces, but the manifestations of those inductions themselves. I think there is a big difference.

    I think, in terms of your circular logic rebuttal, you are right if you are talking about the actual fundamental, but I don't think you are. I think you are taking a tiny step by means of the manifestations to prove differentiation, but then proving manifestations with differentiation (which I think is a IFF contingency, however I do see your point).

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    Thank you Bob. I think we are both struggling here to convey each other's intentions. I'm going to take another stab at describing discrete experiences once again, because I believe you are making it more complicated then I ever intended. On the flip side, it could be that what I am saying is too simple for your liking, and perhaps you understand it, but disagree that is what it could be because it does not cover certain complexities you see that I do not.

    First, what do I mean by the sea of existence? Think of a camera lens. All a lens does, is take in light. It cannot section the light into different wavelengths. It cannot detail or zoom in on one part of the light over the other. It is the receiver.

    Now imagine that everything you do, thoughts, feelings, light, sound, etc, are the light that streams in from a lens. You don't comprehend anything but the light. The sea of existence. But then, you do. You are able to separate that "light" into sound and sight. Technically, this is the brain. If you had no brain, all the pulses from your eardrums and the light hitting the back of your eyes would mean nothing. The brain takes that mess of light, and creates difference within it. Manifestation, differentiation, conceptualization, whatever you want. There is nothing more complicated to discrete experience, then the act of there being light through a lens, and then that something that can take it apart into individual identity. It is as basic as a camera sending a picture to an AI, and an AI can identify different parts of the picture.

    With this, lets address your idea of manifestation. I realize I did not understand what you meant by it, and maybe still don't. Lets try using the theory. What are the essential properties of a manifestation? If its not a discrete experience, can you explain what makes it different?

    For my part, I will attempt to convey how I have interpreted it. It seems when you speak of manifestation, it seems to be the act of awareness of an identity. Now when I say identity, I don't mean words that describe that identity. I mean the act of experiencing a "thing". If I saw a red squirrel, its not the identification of a red squirrel, or the comparison of that squirrel to other things. It is the blob of color, movement and action that makes it a "that".

    To me, this is just the most basic form of discrete experience. It is the fact that I am currently discretely experiencing "that". The way I've been interpreting the rest is as such.

    Differentiation - The discrete experience of comparison between two or more identities.
    Conceptualization - The act of analysis on a discrete experience that defines it as something memorable (possibly the addition of a defintion or descriptive word)

    So from my understanding, you are simply adding different degrees of discrete experience. But none of this changes the logic or the outcome of the theory. It only refines with additional identities, the levels of discrete experience that one can have. This is no different from my fundamental of identifying thoughts and sensations. Both are discrete experiences, just different identities.

    You first have a manifestation, an interpretation, and then, only after, can it be concluded that one necessarily discretely experiences.Bob Ross

    If I my definitions are correct, then this makes sense to me. No quibbles at all! What I think you have been confused on, is that they are all discrete experiences, and are simply different identities that do not counter what I'm stating, but are refinements of what I'm stating. I'm stating A -> B. You're stating A -> a.1 -> a.2 -> B.

    I don't think you can apply a tool of knowledge to that which is immediately known. I think you are attempting to acquire, holistically, all the knowledge you can claim to have via a tool: I don't think it makes sense to claim you can "know" something via a tool, yet you "do not know" the manifestations that were required for the tool of knowledge in the first place.Bob Ross

    What I am claiming is that knowledge is a process that we can use to logically determine that which is most likely to not be contradicted by reality. You can use the process without being aware of it. If you are aware of the process of knowledge, and you use that process of knowledge, you can determine what you know. If my definition of your three definitions works for you, I conclude that these types of discrete experiences are all distinctive knowledge. That is because when we apply the process of knowledge to them, we realize they are simply part of our ability to discretely experience, and are of our own design.

    If I manifest a pink elephant (using my example with discrete experience), then there is nothing which contradicts the fact that I do in fact, manifest a pink elephant. With the process of knowledge, I can conclude this manifestation is something I know. Without understanding the process of knowledge, I could of course doubt that what I am manifesting, is what I am manifesting. And without the understanding the process of knowledge, I could also NOT doubt that what I am manifesting, is what I am manifesting. But I need a logical process to make this more than a belief. One can believe in something that is not contradicted by reality. But what makes it knowledge, is the process one follows to arrive at that conclusion.

    Looking at a manifestation, a basic discrete experience, we can logically conclude that what we manifest, is something we know we manifest. The manifestation itself is not contradicted by reality. Thus this is part of distinctive knowledge. I can also differentiate the pink elephant manifestation from a grey elephant manifestation. "This" is not "that". Finally, I can start conceptualizing that I will call both "elephants" and one is "pink" while the other is "grey".

    All of this is what my theory covers. This is not a counter to what I'm stating, it is in fact, what I am stating. I just never subdivided the process of discrete experience to your level, which I think is well done! But your introduction of more identities does not introduce the idea of "implicit knowledge". One cannot have knowledge, without following the process of knowledge. If one follows the process of knowledge without knowing they are, that is accidental knowledge, not implicit.

    I'll define what I see "implicit" as meaning. "Implicit" seems to me that it is implied or natural. Knowledge can never be implied or natural, because it is a clearly defined process. It doesn't mean we can't conclude that others accidently know things. I can conclude that an ant knows the manifestation of dirt and sugar, and also claim that it does not know the words "dirt" and "sugar" that could be conceptualized about that manifestation. Perhaps the ant follows a process with its manifestations to know that sugar is edible, while dirt is not. And perhaps that process, is the process of knowledge put forth. But can the ant "know that it has knowledge"? With our current understanding of ant intellect, no.

    How do you know its knowledge?

    My point is that you are immediately given, granted, the knowledge that you "know" that you are questioning how you know its knowledge. I am in agreement with you that a tool would be required to evaluate the truth of the content, so to speak, of the question itself, but not the question as immediately manifested.
    Bob Ross

    How do you know that what is manifested is knowledge? Without a process of knowledge, you don't. Without knowing what the process of knowledge is, you cannot know that you know anything. A manifestation is nothing but a discrete experience. How we evaluate that logically is either a belief, or knowledge. Again, you could use the process of knowledge to know it, without knowing the process of knowledge. You would know it, from our outside perspective, but you yourself would not know that you know it. Again, this is accidental knowledge, not implicit. We are not born with an innate understanding of knowledge, most of us are born with the capability to use the process of knowledge.

    Again, to determine the truth in terms of the content, or proposition, of a belief, it requires a tool. But you immediately know that you are having a belief as it was immediately manifested as such. In other words, the belief that there is a red squirrel in my room would require a tool of knowledge to obtain whether it is true or false, but the belief itself (as a belief) is necessarily known immediatelyBob Ross

    To clarify. I do not immediately know I am having a belief. I have to determine that. And yes, with the process of knowledge, I can determine that what I manifest, what I differentiate, and what I conceptualize are all forms of distinctive knowledge.

    I believe this is essentially what you are trying to say. You believe that manifestations are implicitly known, while I am stating manifestations are the act of discrete experience, and by using the logical process of knowledge proposed here, we can determine that manifestations, differentiations, and conceptualizations, are all acts of discrete experience. And the act of discretely experiencing "I discretely experience" is something which cannot be contradicted by reality. As such, we know that we discretely experience, and we can label what we discretely experience as "distinctive knowledge".

    My challenge to you, is for you to demonstrate how you implicitly know that you manifest without first showing the process of what knowledge is. Clearly define the word, and apply it to reality without contradiction. As it is now, I cannot agree that there is innate knowledge within humanity. We are innately capable of knowing, but we are not innately capable of knowing what knowledge is, and thus are incapable of innately claiming we know things without the knowledge of that process.

    One final mention, as I believe the rest is just repetition over this subject.

    As I mentioned before, we cannot discretely experience a contradiction. Because experiencing a contradiction, in the very real sense of experiencing something as 100% identical and both 100% not identical to another concept is something we cannot experience.

    Again, this isn't because we applied the principle of noncontradiction and found it not to contradict, therefore we obtained such knowledge, we simply "know" it because it is manifested necessarily that way.
    Bob Ross

    I am quite certain that someone out there could claim "I know the principle of noncontradiction is wrong innately". You would then ask, "How do you know"? And they would ask you, "How do YOU know the principle of noncontradiction is real?" Someone could very well believe and live with the idea that contradictory things exist. What about a God that is all good, all powerful, and all knowing? Or a being that exists outside of time? These are all contradictions that some people swear they know is true. It is not that people cannot follow the process of knowledge, it is that people do not innately know what knowledge is. Only after discovering what knowledge is, can a person identify what they know, versus what they do not know.

    Has this clarified what each of us is trying to communicate to the other? I must also add that I think your division of manifestation, diffentiation, and concpetualization are fantastic, and wonderful additions to the theory (if I have the proper understanding of your intentions)!
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    I think we are both struggling here to convey each other's intentions.

    I agree. Furthermore, I really appreciate your elaboration as I now understand better where exactly you are coming from. Likewise, I will do my best to keep this response concise and aimed at conveying my point of view.

    Now imagine that everything you do, thoughts, feelings, light, sound, etc, are the light that streams in from a lens. You don't comprehend anything but the light. The sea of existence. But then, you do. You are able to separate that "light" into sound and sight.

    I am understanding this as what is scientifically typically considered "sensations". Am I correct?

    Technically, this is the brain. If you had no brain, all the pulses from your eardrums and the light hitting the back of your eyes would mean nothing. The brain takes that mess of light, and creates difference within it.

    This seems, generally speaking, to be "sensations" vs "perceptions"--the former being the raw input and the latter being the interpretation (in your case, I think you are more stating "differences" instead of "interpretations", but I think they essentially convey the same thing here). My point is that, although you are right in everything you have said, this is all obtained knowledge pertaining to how you derived yourself (or how you, thereafter, derived someone else in relation to themselves). This is the chicken figuring out it came from an egg (or the chicken concluding another chicken must have come from an egg). Maybe instead of calling it "extrapolated chronological precedence" we could call this simply "that which was obtained or determined to be true regarding what must precede itself (itself being the "subject")". This is contrary to “just chronological precedence”, which maybe we could call this simply "that which is deriving or that which is required for the consideration in the first place". The chicken derives that it came from an egg: that derivation requires it in the first place. It could very well be, even given that it makes the most logical sense (or may even be considered necessary) that the chicken came from the egg, this is all formulations of that chicken. What if this "truth", that it must come from the egg, is simply that which is a product of cognition? What if it is a product of the chickens ability to differentiate things (and not “objectively” known, or absolutely apart of the “universe”)? What if it is only necessary in relation to itself? When we analyze a brain, it is an interpretation of a brain via a brain. Therefore, you will only know as much as is allowed via your brain's interpretation of that brain it is analyzing. Although I don't like putting it in those terms (because I am utilizing what I am criticizing to even put this forth), maybe that will make more sense (I'm not sure). Do you think it must necessarily be the case that it comes from the brain, or that it must necessarily be the case in relation to itself? I agree with the science you are invoking here (no problem), but hopefully my proposition here is making a bit of sense.

    What are the essential properties of a manifestation? If its not a discrete experience, can you explain what makes it different?

    Although your definitions are all splendid, I don't think your use of "manifestation" quite fits what I am trying to convey. I was using "manifestation" and "conceptualization" interchangeably (I apologize for the confusion there). For all intents and purposes right now, I am going to try to explain it in terms of "conceptualization" by means of a poor analogy.

    Imagine that an envelope (mail) pops into existence out of thin air into your hands periodically. You don't know the contents of the mail initially or where they came from or how they came to be, but you open them. In each envelope, which occur in succession to one another (and only once you read the one currently in your hand), there is a message that you read. Imagine you (1) necessarily always participate in this periodic reading of the contents of envelopes and (2) that you are always immediately convinced of the contents that you read. This is essentially how I view you (for all intents and purposes right now: "thought"). Let's take it for a spin.

    Let's take your pink elephant example. When you say you had a basic discrete experience of a pink elephant, I am going to map that to an envelope, of which you have no clue where it came from or how it is, which you necessarily opened and read--immediately convinced of its contents: the discrete experience of the pink elephant. Now, as the envelopes are in succession of one another, you are unable to continue until the next envelope pops into your hands and you can be convinced of its contents. Therefore, when you say you could (1) be in doubt that what you manifested was a pink elephant or (2) you could apply a tool of knowledge to determine whether you did in fact manifest it, these both (whichever occurs) would be the next envelope's contents (or an envelope simply after that envelope). So, for example:

    **discrete experience of "pink elephant"**
    envelope 1: I just discretely experienced a pink elephant [convinced]
    envelope 2: did "I" really just discretely experience a "pink elephant" [convinced you are doubting envelope 1]
    envelope 3: "I know I" discretely experienced a "pink elephant" because I can apply it without contradiction to reality [convinced]

    Notice the succession of envelopes and how you cannot (in this hypothetical) be convinced without the use of reading an envelope. Now, this would mean even if 600 million years or 2 seconds go by between manifestations of these envelopes (between when you get convinced via reading one), for you that time would never have occurred. If envelope 2 was read 600 million years after envelope 1, it would be no different for you than reading it 10 seconds after the other. Notice that the **discrete experience** is not “known” (or may “recognized” is a better word?) until envelope 1, not at the point of discrete experience. If envelope 1 never occurred, then the discrete experience “would have never occurred”. That envelope 1 is what enabled you to even logically consider the discrete experience in the first place. When I say “it never would have occurred”, I mean in the sense that even if hypothetically it is still objectively (or absolutely) occurring without the envelopes, it would be completely unverifiable and thereby meaningless to the subject.

    The conceptualization I am referring to is (more or less) the envelopes: a concept manifested in the same essential manner that is immediately convinced of. Even if I read an envelope, get convinced of it, and then immediately in the next envelope am unconvinced of the previous one, this process still occurred. Also notice that the correspondence, so to speak, of each envelope is necessarily one off: envelope > n can pertain to envelope n, but n cannot pertain to n. For example:

    envelope 1: I just discretely experienced a pink elephant
    envelope 2: I was convinced I was discretely experiencing a pink elephant when I read envelope 1

    Notice the convincement that one was convinced during envelope 1 occurs, at a miminum, n + 1 later and cannot occur at n (at 1 in this case). Likewise:

    envelope 1: I am convinced of this very sentence right now as I say it

    I have not solidified, so to speak, that very assertion until > 1 envelope pops up with a message pertaining to it. In other, more confusion, words: I am immediately convinced of “I am convinced of this very sentence right now as I say it”, but necessarily not immediately convinced of my convincement of that very statement until (if at all) envelope > n.

    Last thing to briefly elaborate on is, if this is the case, then how would the reader get convinced of the envelope process? Wouldn't this also be an extrapolation of some sort? The 'egg' of my analogy, so to speak? I think not. This is because, although envelopes can only pertain to each other in chronological order (> n pertains to n) (therefore I would be using the contents of those envelopes to verify the process itself in a logical manner, which is an extrapolation of some sort: a use of logic to derive the logic), I am not basing the argument (or at least not trying to) off of the process of the envelope as extrapolated, but by the form of the envelopes themselves. In other words, by means of the contents of the envelopes, all of these previous and currently continually manifesting envelopes assume the same form--that is, something of which I am immediately convinced of (which can equally be unconvinced of later on). The form is the concept in a pure sense (but I like your definition as well, but notice yours, as you rightly point out, is within discrete experience whereas the convincement of these envelopes I would argue is not). Also, it is important to note that "convincement" that I am referring to is being used not necessarily in terms of an envelope that explicitly contains "I am convinced of X", for that very statement is immediately convincing you of X and not itself. So when I "prove" conceptualization, I am merely reading the contents of envelopes and I assert I was convinced immediately of the content of envelope n by means of another envelope > n--and, in turn, everything in this general sense is a conceptualization (an envelope). I cannot break this immediate conceptualization loop that seems to occur ad infinitum.

    Likewise, when we talk about differentiation, I agree with your definition, but when we provide any logic, or illogical, or rationale, or irrationale, or absurdity, etc, we are doing so in a manner of reading envelopes that we are convinced of immediately, which can most definitely be unconvinced of later. Therefore, what you said is true pertaining to discrete experience, but the whole argument, including differentiation in the sense of experience being discrete, is a succession of envelopes. Actually, I would refurbish it to "is a succession of envelopes without conceding a succession of envelopes beyond the reading of the envelopes themselves". But I think that may be confusing (not sure).

    The manifestation itself is not contradicted by reality.

    So, to keep this as fundamental as I think possible, the idea of "contradiction" is read via an envelope. However, the important aspect of it that makes it "special", so to speak, is that it can be later on the contents of another envelope that asserts the necessity of the principle of noncontradiction and, most importantly, every envelope that manifests pertaining to such will assert the very same thing. This is why it is an axiom: you cannot apply the principle of noncontradiction to itself because that always leads to the use of it in the assertion.

    I can also differentiate the pink elephant manifestation from a grey elephant manifestation. "This" is not "that". Finally, I can start conceptualizing that I will call both "elephants" and one is "pink" while the other is "grey".

    What I am trying to get at is more fundamental than this, the differentiation of "this" is not "that" and the conceptualizing (in your use of the term) "elephants" and "pink" and "grey" are both contents of an envelope (or several). They take the necessary form of an idea popping into existence, so to speak, manifesting, that is immediately convinced of. I think your use of the terms, within discrete experience, are fine though.

    But your introduction of more identities does not introduce the idea of "implicit knowledge". One cannot have knowledge, without following the process of knowledge. If one follows the process of knowledge without knowing they are, that is accidental knowledge, not implicit.

    So there's two aspects needing to be addressed here. One aspect, which was my initial intention for the term “implicit”, is simply the acknowledgment that we, once we say we "know" something, may induce that that thing we know now was occurring the whole time prior to us knowing it (in light of us knowing it). This isn't to say, prior to us knowing it, we knew it. Just that, for example, when we due say "we know that differentiation necessarily occurs", we extrapolate that as occurring prior to when we even knew that. It is "implicit", with respect to this first aspect, in the sense that we are claiming differentiation was occurring, implicitly without our recognition, the whole while prior to our recognition of it. I think my concatenation of "implicit" with "knowledge" was confusing and wrong, so I apologize. My point was that we don't "know" it until we conceptualize it (until it pops up in an envelope). If we had never conceptualized it, it would been as if it never existed (it very well could have never existed). I think, now in hindsight, this is more or less what you meant by "accidental", but this leads me to the second aspect: it ended up, somewhere along the way, sort of morphing into a conversation about if you can "know" something without applying it to a tool (this is separate from my initial intention for the use of the term “implicit”). This sense, although I don't think "implicit" is the best word, I was meaning that the envelope itself is a given, without conceding a giver in the sense that any derivation of a giver would, well, be a derivation, which is derived from the content of the envelopes. This aspect, admittedly, isn't really "implicit", it is "manifested", or "given", or something. For all intents and purposes, this:

    "how do I know of my previous envelope I read?" -> "because I remember reading it"

    and this:

    "how do I know of my previous envelope I read?" -> "because I can apply that belief to reality without contradiction"

    Are of the same form. This form, this conceptualization, is the most fundamental in terms of "that which is deriving or that which is required for the consideration in the first place". On a separate note, I would even argue (and the argument itself was read from envelopes) that there is a difference between applying A to B within "reality" without contradiction, applying A to A within "reality" without contradiction, and applying "reality" to "reality" without contradiction. I think your use of "without contradiction" is utilizing the latter (with respect to immediately “known” things). Technically you are right though, I can't contradict that I had read previous envelope n, but how could I contradict it? How do I apply reality to reality? How do I pass a test through itself to see if it passes? My point is that it is impossible. Imagine you forgot that you read envelope n, then you wouldn't be applying anything in the first place: it would not become a consideration until an envelop > n pops up with a manifestation of that consideration. If an envelope pops up with a manifestation about whether a previous envelope occurred, and it is resulted with another envelope that concludes you did, then you did. Likewise, if we were to postulate that an envelope manifests asserting your use of drugs during envelope n's contents being read, and thereby questioning whether it is "objectively true", the fact that you had the envelope n occurred is necessarily solidified as true regardless of whether it is "objectively true". By example of yet another poor analogy, imagine our tool for determining motion was based off of a specific train, T, which is continually moving at a constant speed. Everything we characterize as “moving” or “not moving” (or any consideration of “how fast” or “how slow”) is relative to T. I am having a hard to understanding how we aren’t, when trying to applying an envelope succession to itself “without contradiction”, trying to determine whether T is moving. T is the standard, it is that which springs the very notion of “movement”. When we try to apply A and B, or even A to A, relative to reality (“to reality”), we can determine whether it is a contradiction; However, when apply “reality to reality” I don’t see how we are actually performing any “applying”, just like trying to “apply” T to T relative to T to see if T is moving.

    Perhaps the ant follows a process with its manifestations to know that sugar is edible, while dirt is not. And perhaps that process, is the process of knowledge put forth. But can the ant "know that it has knowledge"? With our current understanding of ant intellect, no.

    I'm thinking now in terms of "accidental knowledge", as you put it. My point is that the "accidental" or "unaccidental" knowledge we deem it to have has no relation to what it has in relation to itself. It may be the most logical thing for us to deem, but that has no impact on whether it knows anything. So I think you are right, but with careful consideration in relation to ourselves, not in relation to itself.

    How do you know that what is manifested is knowledge? Without a process of knowledge, you don't.

    To keep this brief, there’s two means of looking at this. One is the envelope succession is a loop the subject cannot break. The other is the envelope succession is what manifests any tool of knowledge we can come up with and process of acting out that tool, which necessarily means “know” those manifestations are “true” (aka, convinced of immediately) in order to do either of the two aforementioned.

    Likewise, I would argue certain aspects of this envelope process are necessary in the sense that the contents of the envelopes always conform to a specific convincement, such as the principle of noncontradiction.

    But building off of that, in terms of a tool of knowledge, I think we can also prove we have “implicit” knowledge in the sense of exactly what you were depicting with light and the brain: your brain, or to be more specific you as the subject, conforms to specific motivations which require “knowledge” in that sense. But this would be getting into the “why” of discrete experience—nevertheless, this is an innate form of knowledge that we obtain via the tool of knowledge (i.e. that your “tool of knowledge” would never have been created in the first place if you didn’t have some sort of motive to differentiate). I don’t think we are in any disagreement here, as this would have to be obtained via a tool of knowledge that there is “implicit”, innate knowledge in the first place.

    I will stop here for now: hopefully this exposes a bit better what I am trying to say.

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    Thanks for your reply Bob! Lets see if we can get this figured out between us.

    Now imagine that everything you do, thoughts, feelings, light, sound, etc, are the light that streams in from a lens. You don't comprehend anything but the light. The sea of existence. But then, you do. You are able to separate that "light" into sound and sight.

    I am understanding this as what is scientifically typically considered "sensations". Am I correct?
    Bob Ross

    I don't want to use the term sensations, as its not a very clear term. Some people think it means "from the senses". Some people think it means thoughts. I want you to imagine a camera taking in light. Then I want you to imagine the first step that you do with that light. Why are you able to see color differences? Why are you able to see a sheep in a field? When you hear a breeze, why is it that the color and sound don't blend together? How can you see something within everything you're experiencing, when an inanimate object does not. How we do, is for science to understand. But for knowledge, all we need to know, is that we do.

    You live in a sea of existence, and you can part and parcel it. That's anything you do. Anything. Any "thing" you do. Does this make sense now? You are a "thing" that can experience other "things" instead of an amorphous wave of existence within the sea that does not know where it is, what it is, what things are, simply subsumed by the sea it will never realize it is part of.

    I am going to short circuit your mail analogy here to show you what I am saying. Imagine there is nothing (which is really everything, but you can't discretely experience). Now you have an envelope in your hand. Suddenly, there is some "thing". That's all a basic discrete experience is.

    Anything that comes after that is subsumed in the theory I've put forward. That's manifestation, differentiation, and conceptualization, as I defined it previously. The envelope manifests. You differentiate its parts. You conceptualize the letter inside as you read it.

    You don't have to read the envelope. You don't have to have certainty. But you experience the envelope appearing in your hand. You could be certain about it, or doubt it, that's your choice. The point I'm trying to make, is that you aren't going prior, or deeper than where I've started. Whatever you're envisioning beyond the point of the envelope appearing in your hand, requires you to have discretely experienced the envelope in the first place. That is the thing you have no choice in. If you start with any "thing", then you are starting with a discrete experience, and you cannot escape it. As for "certainty", what is certainty in your mind? Does that mean I know? That I believe strongly? It seems the word "certainty" cannot exist without belief or knowledge, in which case we are entering the step of deciding whether I have a belief, or distinctive knowledge. But this does not negate the fact that you could not have certainty about any thing, without having the ability to discretely experience.

    Regardless, the envelope is the start, not the reading or the the feeling of certainty. To counter that discrete experience is the first fundamental that I can know, you must show something that comes prior to discrete experience that I can know as a fundamental. And Bob, you can't, because it requires that you have discrete experience as a fundamental, to debate that discrete experience is a fundamental. There is the ability to not have discrete experience, in which you are merely a lens, an object. Then there is the ability to have discrete experience. There is nothing in my mind more fundamental to know, then discrete experience.

    My point is that, although you are right in everything you have said, this is all obtained knowledge pertaining to how you derived yourself (or how you, thereafter, derived someone else in relation to themselves).Bob Ross

    Yes! If we understand each other correctly, knowledge is derived from our base ability to discretely experience. I've never stated anything else.

    This is contrary to “just chronological precedence”, which maybe we could call this simply "that which is deriving or that which is required for the consideration in the first place". The chicken derives that it came from an egg: that derivation requires it in the first place. It could very well be, even given that it makes the most logical sense (or may even be considered necessary) that the chicken came from the egg, this is all formulations of that chicken. What if this "truth", that it must come from the egg, is simply that which is a product of cognition?Bob Ross

    If you want to use chronological precedence, that is fine. But I'm not using that term. I'm not sure why chronological precedence is important here. You need atoms to exist, but you don't have to talk about atoms to look at your watch and tell time. You just need to know the signs of time, and then see if your watch matches those signs. If the watch existed before you learned about it, I don't see that being important to whether you applicably know watches exist later on, unless I'm missing something you're trying to convey.

    I've noticed you've been using the word truth. I've never claimed knowledge is truth. Its merely a rational means of applying our discrete experience in such a way, that we are the least likely to be in contradiction with reality. "Truth" is defined within my theory of knowledge as being the combination of all possible contexts, and their applications to reality without contradiction. It is something plausibly unobtainable.

    I want to be clear, you can applicably know things in one context, that would not be knowledge in another context. I might look at a pear and an apple, and define them both as an apple in my context without contradiction from reality. However, someone with the distinctive knowledge of both a pear and an apple could come along and state that I'm ignorant, and one is a pear, while the other is an apple. Both of us applicably know different things within our contexts.

    Just look at science over the years. It is recorded with instances of people that applicably knew things that today, with our expanded distinctive knowledge and expanded tool set, applicably know as false. It doesn't mean that the scientists back then did not applicably know their own theories. They did within their context.

    When we analyze a brain, it is an interpretation of a brain via a brain. Therefore, you will only know as much as is allowed via your brain's interpretation of that brain it is analyzing.Bob Ross

    Yes, you have it! Did you know there are certain people who cannot visualize within their mind? They can never applicably know what it is like to visualize in their mind. The limits of what we can applicably know are limited by our distinctive context. If you want, skim through part 3 again for a reminder. That which cannot be discretely experienced can never be applicably known.

    Do you think it must necessarily be the case that it comes from the brain, or that it must necessarily be the case in relation to itself?Bob Ross

    No. All that I am stating that cannot logically or applicably be contradicted by reality, is that I discretely experience. Everything else is the act of logically applying that discrete experience in a way that gives me the best chance of not being contradicted by reality. If current science concludes that the brain is the physical source of our "being", then that is the applicable knowledge we have within our current context of history. But, its plausible we're wrong. Still, we'll take what we applicably know today and work with that, than what could plausibly be known tomorrow.

    Back to your envelope argument. I found it mostly confusing and away from the point. I wanted to address certain points of the argument, but realized that as it was intertwined with a lot of premises that do not make sense, or have missed the point of what discrete experience is, that it would be best to reorient to the fundamental premise, and drop most of the envelope argument entirely.

    The point I want to make, is at the part where you say "an envelope appears in my hand," then you've described a discrete experience. Anything else is simply details about discrete experience, like thoughts, concepts, etc. And at that point, you've accepted my initial premise of the knowledge theory. If you have, then the rest follows as its unfolded. Anything after the envelope is simply a refinement or debate about the details of how thoughts form, concepts interact, etc. But none of that counters the origin and logic of the theory I've put forward.

    The question is, "Can you come up with something more fundamental that you can distinctively and applicably know, prior to being able to discretely experience?" If you can, then yes, you've challenged the theory. But if not, the theories initial premise from which everything is built off of, stands. Of course perhaps there is a problem in the next step of the theory. But to counter the initial premise of the theory, you have an incredibly high, and in my mind, impossible bar to challenge.

    Regarding implicit knowledge:
    So there's two aspects needing to be addressed here. One aspect, which was my initial intention for the term “implicit”, is simply the acknowledgment that we, once we say we "know" something, may induce that that thing we know now was occurring the whole time prior to us knowing it (in light of us knowing it).Bob Ross

    This is an induction. An induction, is not knowledge. An induction is a belief with a degree of cogency. Your second aspect used the envelope analogy again, which I believe accidently wandered away from what was being discussed. Perhaps what would help, is if you use the analogies I've already provided, so that way we're using a similar base. The analogies I provide come from my understanding of the theory, so you can be confident I will understand what you are trying to convey if you use them.

    At this point, I am still not seeing that we can have implicit knowledge, as it seems you are describing either

    1. Having discrete experience, which is something that we can ascertain with knowledge, is known in the act of experiencing it.
    2. Beliefs, which are inductions of varying cogency.
    3. Accidental knowledge, or conclusions that we have arrived at using the process of knowledge, without knowing that we actively used the process of knowledge.

    I hope this focusses the points, and that I'm accurately pointing out the main contentions so far. Please let me know if I've missed anything. I am also sorry that I did not tackle a few of your points within the envelope arguments that I think had merit. It is just that in doing so, I think it would have presented confusion because of the flawed premises within the envelope argument they were tied with. Thanks again Bob, great discussion as always!
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    I am also sorry that I did not tackle a few of your points within the envelope arguments that I think had merit. It is just that in doing so, I think it would have presented confusion because of the flawed premises within the envelope argument they were tied with

    No problem! I do think that you aren't quite following what I am trying to convey. So I am going to keep this response incredibly brief so you can fire back with your thoughts (without having to decipher a long reply).

    I think that, although we both have good intentions, we are mostly talking over each other. I feel like I followed everything you stated in your last post, and mostly agree, but I must be missing something as well. When you state:

    The question is, "Can you come up with something more fundamental that you can distinctively and applicably know, prior to being able to discretely experience?"

    I think this is missing my point, as it is framed in a way where it is impossible for me to do so: "distinctively and applicably know" is within the discrete experience "framework", so to speak. And, as far as I am understanding you, this coincides quite nicely with your view of discrete experience being something of which I cannot possibly counter with a more fundamental.

    For all intents and purposes, I am going to simplify my "conceptualization" to "thoughts". I think, as far as I understand your point of view, you are viewing it like this:

    "discrete experience" -> "subject" -> *

    Where '*' is just a placeholder that can be filled with nothing or something else (objects). Whereas I am viewing it like:

    "discrete experience" <- "subject" -> *

    When you state that it starts (at the fundamental) with "discrete experience", I am thinking, from my point of view, that that is a "thought". You are "thinking" that everything requires "differentiation", "a discrete", which is where, I would argue, it starts. Even when you state (rightfully so) that "thinking" is a process of discrete experience: that is a "thought". So even if we go with:

    "discrete experience" -> "thought" -> *

    I am viewing it as:

    "discrete experience" <- "thought" -> *

    Obviously, there are many problematic issues with substituting "thought" with "subject", but I am just trying to convey the bare bone difference between us (stripping away everything else). From my view, you cannot claim "discrete experience is the fundamental" without "thinking it", where "thought" is the fundamental. This is why I think we are deriving in two completely different senses of the term. This is the challenge: you are not starting with a "discrete experience", you are starting with a "thought". The "thought" which states that thoughts itself are "discrete experiences", etc.

    I will let you fire back with what you think. I think this is the bare bone difference between us.
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    I think this helps a little. Here is what I am saying.

    A subject is a discrete experiencer. I am a discrete experiencer. They are one and the same for the most primitive of knowledge. You cannot ask the question, what am "I" without realizing there is a separation of "yourself" from "something else". You cannot discretely experience, if you do not exist. You cannot exist, if you do not discretely experience. You are not a lens, you are a discrete experiencer.

    When breaking down the fundamentals of knowledge, what is it that must be known first? An I? Or discrete experience? The answer is discrete experience. While you cannot discretely experience if you are not first an "I", you cannot even comprehend what an "I" is, without discretely experiencing. To have the most primitive notion of "I", you must divide your experience into "I", and "Not I". "This" and "that".

    I can doubt what "I" am without the knowledge of discrete experience. I could say I was a conscious being that transcends physical existence. Or a brain. Or "I" am someone one second, and a few seconds later, "I" am someone else. It is nebulous and unknowable.

    If I realize I discretely experience, that is the one thing I can claim clearly, and without contradiction. "I" am a discrete experiencer. From that, "I" have a foundation to build knowledge from. If I am a discrete experiencer, then logically, what is the best way to discretely experience? And thus the theory goes.

    The question is, "Can you come up with something more fundamental that you can distinctively and applicably know, prior to being able to discretely experience?"

    I think this is missing my point, as it is framed in a way where it is impossible for me to do so: "distinctively and applicably know" is within the discrete experience "framework", so to speak. And, as far as I am understanding you, this coincides quite nicely with your view of discrete experience being something of which I cannot possibly counter with a more fundamental.
    Bob Ross

    If that is the case, then that means I have created a fundamenal claim for the theory. Of course, my logic from that fundamental may be flawed. It has seemed to me you are questioning that fundamental, which is what I've been trying to defend. But if this fundamental is not being challenged, where and what does the theory fail at obtaining?

    This is why I think we are deriving in two completely different senses of the term. This is the challenge: you are not starting with a "discrete experience", you are starting with a "thought". The "thought" which states that thoughts itself are "discrete experiences", etc.Bob Ross

    How do I know what a thought is, if I do not first discretely experience? Using a higher level concept to discover a lower level concept does not mean the higher level concept is more fundamental than the lower level concept. We only discovered atoms because of science that was not based upon upon understanding atoms. Does that mean that the science that discovered atoms, is more fundamental than the atoms themselves? No.

    If I had to guess, because you've been noting chronological use and chicken and egg scenarios, I think you are going in another direction from what I mean by fundamental. I do not mean a fundamental as a means of chronological use. I mean its smallest constituent parts. When I break down what I can know without challenge or contradiction, I find nebulous and unprovable assertions. But there is one assertion which cannot be countered. There is discrete experience. I am a discrete experiencer. Come all the details of an "I", or the types of discrete experiences, this is a fundamental which I know.

    It doesn't matter why I discretely experience. It doesn't matter that I used thoughts, language, and my brain to discover that I discretely experience. That doesn't change the fact is a fundamental of knowledge that I discovered. Is this what you've been trying to tell me? That if I use language to put discrete experience as a comprehensible sign, that language is more fundamental than the ability to discretely experience?

    I'll take your thoughts from here Bob.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    Let me start off with a concession: you are 100% correct here. I apologize for the confusion; I am currently slapping myself upon the head!

    I most definitely have to utilize the principle of non-contradiction (pon for short) to claim anything. To claim that there was a manifestation, or that I am currently having one, requires pon. Therefore, I would argue that it all starts with pon.

    However, most notably, I don't think pon and "discrete experience" are synonymous with one another: the latter is formed from the former. I think there is actually something in between the two, so to speak: the realization of the manifestations themselves. Let me put it forth bluntly:

    1. Starts with pon
    2. Utilizes pon to immediately realize the "thoughts" themselves.
    3. Utilizes those thoughts to realize that I "discretely experience"

    Therefore, my only adjustment is the insertion of #2. Again, I apologize for the confusion, the missing piece for me was realizing I am utilizing pon to get to 2, so I was just starting with 2.

    I would also like to respond to your elaboration on "fundamental":

    Using a higher level concept to discover a lower level concept does not mean the higher level concept is more fundamental than the lower level concept.

    The converse is exactly what I am saying. This is why I was using the egg and chicken analogy so much. This is also why I identified two types of chronological derivation (two types of derivations in terms of fundamentals).

    We only discovered atoms because of science that was not based upon upon understanding atoms. Does that mean that the science that discovered atoms, is more fundamental than the atoms themselves?

    Yes. This is exactly what I am trying to point out. There's two kinds of derivation, and I find people typically focusing on only one of the two. One "fundamental" is in the sense of the highest level thing which derives all else, the other "fundamental" is what the highest level thing concluded is lower levels. Likewise, it is only the "highest level" thing in relation to the latter form "fundamental", where it concluded there are lower level things, so to speak, than itself or what it is discretely experiencing. Moreover, it is the lowest level in relation to the former kind of "fundamental": everything is contingent on it. But that doesn't mean it controls everything, or that it isn't a fair point to conclude other contingencies in terms of other objects. It is fair to conclude tables are contingent on atoms, but both are contingent on the subject insofar as it may or may not be there absent the subject. Likewise, the atom is more fundamental than the table, but it is also less fundamental to the table. The microscope used to see a germ is more fundamental than the germ itself insofar as it is necessarily contingent on such a tool for its discovery. It may very well be, in 1000 years from now, that a much better tool we come up with renders our previous view of germs obsolete (not saying it definitely will, but it is possible). That microscope which you can immediately see for yourself is a much more concrete, sure fact than anything it produces for you to see. Likewise, although this may never happen either, we may, in 2000 years, determine that our view of atoms was completely off. The "atom", conceptually, is contingent on more "fundamental", "higher level" objects we use to discover them and could very well "undiscover them", if you will. Furthermore, this isn't to say we don't consider the "atom", conceptually, as more "fundamental" than the table, it is just with careful consideration that they both fundamentally contingent on one another in two different regards. Does that make sense?

    I do not mean a fundamental as a means of chronological use. I mean its smallest constituent parts.

    Firstly, you are 100% correct in your inference that I am using "fundamental" in a totally different way, as previously described. However, with respect to "discrete experience", I don't see how you are using "fundamental" in the sense of "smallest constituent parts". "Differentiation" is not the smallest parts. Just like how it was posited that the scientific tool utilized to discover the atoms are not more fundamental than the atom itself, differentiation is not more fundamental than the atoms that are discovered therefrom. I am probably just misunderstanding you, but if the goal is to use the smallest constituent parts, then you would have to derive back to a quark or something. Differentiation is in terms of my sense of the term "fundamental": it is scientific tool used to discover the item (analogously, not literally a scientific tool of course). In that case, it is pon.

    But there is one assertion which cannot be countered. There is discrete experience. I am a discrete experiencer.

    I would like to agree, but also emphasize pon -> thoughts -> discrete experiencer. You first must be convinced of the thoughts themselves to then conclude you are a discrete experiencer.

    It doesn't matter that I used thoughts, language, and my brain to discover that I discretely experience.

    I am hesitant here. There's a difference between the thoughts themselves, as immediately known via pon, and those thoughts concluding they are being produced by a brain. Same with language. I am not trying to constrict this to internal monologue. You must necessarily "know" your thoughts, via pon, before you can conclude you discretely experience. I am not referring to any inferences to where the thoughts themselves, or the use of pon, is coming from. I would say the fundamental is pon (after further contemplation and a couple slaps to the face).

    As I definitely overcomplicated this into a much longer discussion than it needed to be, although I am more than happy to continue the conversation, I don't want to squander any of your time. So, I will leave it up to you if you would like to terminate our conversation now, or continue the quest. I have much more to say pertaining to the ambiguity that worries me within your epistemology. Seems as though I really can define whatever I want, because "meaningfulness" is no where to be concretely found in your epistemology. There's a lot one can do without violating pon. Likewise, I can quite literally define two unique sets of essential properties to the same name without contradiction: there's nothing in your epistemology stopping me from doing this. But, again, I will only continue down that road if you would still like to continue our conversation.

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k


    Ok, I am glad we've figured out each other's points! I have no objection to you noting the order in which we assessed the theory. Yes, thoughts were used to create the pon, to create the term discrete experience. My point, is that out of all the things I could know first, and build all other knowledge off of, discrete experience was fit the fundamental I needed.

    From there, I can then then show that the logic of discrete experience justified pon. That is because I cannot discretely experience something that is both 100% one thing, and 100% a different thing. I can then use discrete experience as a base to know thoughts. And so on.

    But at this point, this may just be a matter of difference that we understand, and have to accept with each other. There is nothing wrong with that. I have the highest respect for your thinking, and it is the different outlook of every person that sees the world in their own viewpoint that adds our understanding. We also may be cutting hairs as well. I've already noted that you absolutely must be able to think to figure out that you discretely experience. I think we're just having a disagreement over "fundamental", and that's pretty insignificant at this juncture.

    I do want you to address your other problems with the theory. How do you define meaningfulness? To your point, you can define anything however you want within distinctive knowledge. But when you apply that to reality, it must be able to persist without reality contradicting it. So, there is that limiting factor.

    And yes, you can create the same word and apply two separate concepts to it. There is nothing in reality that prevents you from doing so. Here is an example of a famous Chinese poem that has 94 characters that all sound the same. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lion-Eating_Poet_in_the_Stone_Den#:~:text=%22Lion%2DEating%20Poet%20in%20the,Standard%20Mandarin%2C%20with%20only%20the

    However, I would argue this isn't the best practice in most cases, and should be minimized. That is because the only way to tell the difference between the identical symbols, is the context that they are used in. Contextual word choice is already slippery enough within cultural context, so having formal definitions that should hold within most contexts can help with consistency of thought and application.

    So these are things I've thought about, and there is a strength to them that you might not be aware of. As such, I want to hear from your thoughts first. Taking the theory as I've noted it, please note your issues. Don't worry, I am enjoying myself in these conversations. That being said, if you tire of them, feel free to let me know without any guilt or worry. I would like you to enjoy them as well, and not feel forced or pressured to continue.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    Don't worry, I am enjoying myself in these conversations. That being said, if you tire of them, feel free to let me know without any guilt or worry. I would like you to enjoy them as well, and not feel forced or pressured to continue.

    Likewise, I thoroughly enjoy our conversations! I have a lot of respect for how well thought out your positions are! I don't think enough people on this forum give you enough credit where it is due! I just wanted to make sure that you are just as intrigued by this conversation as me (:

    Moreover, I agree: I think our different outlooks on the "fundamental" is trivial enough, to say the least. I think it is time to continue to different aspects of the epistemology.

    The main objection, or more like issue, that I am internally thinking about pertains to the ambiguity, or almost incredibly limited scope, of what is covered in the epistemology as is. Again, as always, I may be just misunderstanding (you tell me!), but, although the epistemology is rock solid hitherto, it doesn't really provide a concrete structure for societal contexts (I would say--or at least that's how my internally raised dilemma goes). In light of your chinese poem example (which is a great find by the way!), I don't think I need to go too into depth about what I mean by ambiguity with respect to defining (more like creating) terminology. Just as a quick example, in the abstract, I can legitimately determine essential properties X, Y, Z and (distinctly different) essential properties A and B to the same term. So when I refer to that term, it could be in relation to either one of those two essential property sets (so to speak), and there is no contradiction here to be found: ambiguity is not a contradiction (in the form of A is A and not A).

    Although I think we both agree that the definitions that provide the most clarity should prevail, my dilemma is: "what justification do I have for that?". What in the epistemology restricts the other person from simply disagreeing? I found nothing stopping them from doing so. That is a worry for me, as it seems like, if I follow the trajectory of the epistemology in this manner, we end up with incomprehensible amounts of deadlocks (stalemates).

    I actually think I have come up with a solution to this. I think that the subscription to the pon actually provides more rigidity than I originally thought. I think that we can clearly argue that ambiguity is actually wrong (or, more specifically, best clarity right) if the individual subscribes to pon. They cannot hold both. The argument, loosely, is as follows:

    1. Ambiguity does not represent experience in the most clarifying manner.
    2. Every "thought" the subject has is motivated towards acquiring an explanation.
    3. The explanation that provides the most clarity for the subject becomes the explanation they accept. ("most clarity" being what they cognitively decipher as such, I'm not saying it is with respect to other subjects)
    4. Defining ambiguously contradicts providing the most clarity.
    5. Therefore if a less ambiguous definition is provided (that they also consider less ambiguous), it must be accepted by the subject.

    In my thinking, very premature I do admit, I think that even to provide a counter to this would be an attempt to provide a better clarifying explanation (conclusion), therefore it is self-defeating to reject this given pon. But, to dive in deeper:

    #1 This is based off of pon: "ambiguity" is defined as the contrary to that which provides clarity. Therefore, to reject this, I think one would be obligated to reject pon.

    #2 This is also based off of pon: I don't think this can be contradicted. Conclusions of any kind are an explanation. The sole purpose of questions is a "thought" driven towards the goal of explanation. Even to say "it just is", or anything like that that provides no real good explanation, is still an explanation--in a generic sense. A statement, blunt and without a question, is still an explanation. I don't mean "explanation" in the sense that we deem it "sufficient" in the sense of academia. Therefore, I think they would be obliged to reject pon in order to reject this.

    #3 Any attempt to counter this is implicitly trying to provide a better explanation than my proposition here, so even in the case they reject this, their rejection is quite literally them accepting the explanation (counter) they deemed to provide better clarity. Therefore, this cannot be contradicted.

    #4 This is honestly just a reiteration of #1. I'm not sure if it is even needed.

    #5 Again, even if they reject this, they would be acting it out implicitly, therefore it cannot be contradicted.

    Therefore, I think this argument conforms to a specific protocol, so to speak, which is simply use of pon. The only thing they must accept is pon to be obligated to accept that ambiguity is actually wrong. I can actually tell that person they are wrong even within their own context IFF they accept pon. That is our common ground.

    Accordingly to this kind of pon argument anchoring (where they must choose to accept whole heartedly or reject pon), I think we could most definitely add principles like these (as long as they conform properly) to the epistemology and, thereby, provide stronger, more structured, system for people to abide by.

    Likewise, I was wondering: "couldn't the other person just reject possibility (or some other induction hierarchy) as more cogent than plausibility (or some other induction)?". I think, as is, although you argue just fine for it, they could. They could utilize the most basic discrete and applicable knowledge principles in your epistemology to reject the hierarchy without contradiction. However, I think I can provide yet another pon anchored argument that forces them to either accept or reject the pon:

    1. Anything you experience requires a conclusion.
    2. Therefore, in order to concede objects, the subject is required.
    3. Therefore, that which is closer to immediate experience the subject can be more sure of.
    4. Therefore, possibility (as defined in epistemology) is more cogent than plausibility (ditto) because it is closer to the subject's immediate experience.

    This is just a raw rough draft, and it definitely could use some better terminology, but I think you get the general idea:

    #1 This cannot be contradicted. It would require a conclusion.
    #2 Just a specific elaboration of #1
    #3 Must reject 1 in order to reject this, which cannot be contradicted.
    #4 This logically follows. They would have to reject pon in #1.

    I think this kind of pon anchoring could really expand the epistemology with respect to a lot of other principles the subject would be bound to (unless they reject pon). Let me know what you think.

    The second idea I have been thinking of, to state it briefly, is what I can "axiomatic contracts". What I mean is that, in the case that something isn't strictly (rigidly) pon anchored, two subjects could still anchor it to pon with respect to an agreed upon axiom. For example, although my previous argument is much stronger (I would say), we could also legitimately ban ambiguity IFF the other subject agrees to the axiom that they want to convey their meaning to me. With that axiom in mind, thereby signing an "axiomatic contract", they would be obligated to provide as much clarity as possible, otherwise they would be violating that "axiomatic contract" by means of violating the pon. In other words, they would be contradicting the agreed upon axiom, which would, in turn, violate the contract. Just some food for thought!

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    I apologize for the double post here, but I've had more time to think and wanted to share a bit more with you (so you can mow it over in your head).

    1. "Accidental Properties" should be "Unessential Properties". If I am remembering correctly, your epistemology utilizes the terms "essential" and "accidental" to refer to properties. However, although I understand the underlying meaning, I don't think "accidental" properly addressed what is trying to be conveyed. The way I am thinking about it, there's nothing "accidental" about properties that may be decided to be removable from the term. I would say those properties are "unessential", and they are predefined. If an "essential property" turns out to be something I deem unworthy of such a title, then that term is being fundamentally altered to mean something different (and not merely a refurbishment).

    For example, let's say I am defining "monitor" with the essential properties of ["displays things on a screen"] (where [] denotes a set). I think I am logically constrained to the following with consideration to object O:

    IF O lacks the potential to have had the essential properties necessary to be a monitor, then it is not a monitor. (i.e. in the abstract, if O lacks the necessary components, even in the sense of dysfunctional components, that make the essential property of displaying a screen, then it is not a "monitor")

    IF O has the potential to have had the essential properties necessary to be a monitor, then it is a monitor--"dysfunctional monitor". (i.e. in the abstract, I can consider O, given just a slightly torn wire or a completely empty wire port, if it were intact, to would have produced the essential property of displaying things).

    IF O has the essential properties, then it is a "monitor" ("functional monitor").

    The reason why this is of particular importance to me is that I was encountering essentially the issue of the Ship of Theseus again, but with doors. What makes a door a door? It doesn't seem like there is really, in colloquial speech, a clear line that is drawn (no real essential properties). Is it that it has a knob? No, doors can not have knobs. Is it that it has rectangular shape? No. Does it need to open? No. Does it need to close? no. Does it need hinges? no. But then I realized, and I'm pretty sure you probably meant this when we previously discussed the ship paradox, that essential properties are the exact same, in terms of arbitrariness, as unessential properties except that they are determined to be the fundamental aspects of the term. Therefore, if an essential property turns out to not be essential, then what is actually happening is that the subject is completely disbanding from that term and creating a whole new one (it is not a refurbishment, that can only occur with unessential properties).

    Therefore, I think each term must have at least one essential property, and that is the anchor, so to speak, of the term. So, for example, if I define a "door" as "that which can open", then it doesn't matter anything else (such as the shape, texture, color, material, etc). And if I decide that, actually, that essential property is no more, then so is the term "door". Now, there's two important things to note here: (1) I can most definitely still, after disbanding the term "door", define "door" again with different essential properties (it is just that it is no longer the same concept) and (2) the essential property, as previously defined, is constrained to potentiality (so even if a "door" won't open, that doesn't mean it hasn't qualified as "that which can open").

    Further, quite frequently when we say "that is a door", "that is a fake door", or the like, what we really are referring to is "likeness", which I consider to be only useful for anticipation purposes (strictly hypotheticals), and are not actually assigned to the term "door". For example, given my previous essential property qualifier for "door", if I see an object that resembles all the unessential, stereotypical, properties of a "door", I may be inclined to treat it as such--or, in the case that treating it as such produces no meaningful results, I may be inclined to define it as a "fake door". But my emphasis is that that which does not contain all the essential properties is not included in that term. So I would be inclined to say "it is like a door" when there is an object that lacks any potential to open but yet resembles a door.

    2. I think it is finally time to address "plausibilities". "Plausibility" typically means "Seemingly or apparently valid, likely, or acceptable; credible". I don't think this even remotely resembles what you are trying to convey in the epistemology and, although we could legitimately rebrand the term, I think it is in our best interest (or at least my best interest) to use more pertinent terminology. I hereby propose terminology more resembling "speculative potentials", which directly eliminates "credibility" and "likelihood" from the terminology (as I don't think either should be attributed to a "plausible induction"). Therefore, I think "plausibilities" are actually "speculative potentials". A "speculation" is "Reasoning based on inconclusive evidence; conjecture or supposition" and "potentiality" is referring to "that which is not contradicted in the abstract". To say something is "plausible" is not, as you are probably well aware, to claim something only based off of it having potential (it is weightier than that).

    Moreover, since "inapplicable plausibilities" have no potentiality (because they can be contradicted in the abstract: namely that they are not truth-apt, which contradicts the investigation of the claim in the first place), they will be hereby moved to "irrational inductions" and, most importantly, the terminology would now reflect that concisely and clearly ("speculative potential" directly explicates that it necessarily involves potentiality).

    Likewise, there needs to be some subcategories of "speculative potentials", for they are all not equal claims (potentiality is quite a low bar to pass). I hereby propose we separate it as follows:

    Divide "speculative potentials" into two subgroups: "considerable speculative potentials" and "inconsiderable speculative potentials". "Considerable" being defined as that which is worthy of consideration, which would be constituted by "a speculation, that has potential, that provides some form of negative and/or positive evidence beyond its mere potentiality". "Inconsiderable" is simply "that which has not provided anything beyond its potentiality as a basis of evidence".

    Now, it will have to probably be voiced in greater depth in a subsequent post, but I would like to briefly point out that I would like to also refrain from accepting "inconsiderable speculative potentials".

    Within "considerable speculative potentials", we can split it further into two subcategories: "credible speculative potentials" and "incredible speculative potentials". "Credible" being defined as "that which, upon consideration, (1) passes a threshold as defined in an axiomatic contract, (2) abides by a well defined and coherent logical system, or/and (3) directly abides by the principle of noncontradiction". Anything that doesn't constitute as "credible" is thereby "incredible".

    3. I am still not sure if I am right in trying to logically tie the subject down to avoid deadlocks (as discussed in the previous post), but I have thought a starter point. Firstly, in order to be a "societal context", there must be some sort of inter-subjective or inter-objective agreement. If not, then it is not a "societal context"--and thereby is a "personal context". This cannot be contradicted as it is a deduced term. Secondly, the subject can hold a subjective claim and it's inter-subjective converse without contradiction. Likewise, the subject can hold an objective claim and it's inter-objective converse without contradiction.

    My initial flaw, I think, in my contemplation of societal context deadlocks was my fundamental viewing of it as all "objective". However, I think we can split it into two meaningful terms: "objective" and "inter-objective". "Objectivity" is "that which the subject considers object in relation to itself", whereas "inter-objectivity" is "that which is agree upon, by a collective of subjects, as the object in relation to themselves as a shared experience". For example, when a red-green colorblind and non-colorblind person fundamental disagree (thus seemingly at a deadlock), they are actually disagreeing "objectively", but not necessarily "inter-objectively". The colorblind person could very well hold that it is "objectively" "true" that they are seeing green, while also holding that it is an "inter-objective" fact that what they are seeing is red--meaning they accept that it would be a contradiction for them to claim that it is green for the majority of people, but, nevertheless, it is not a contradiction to apply it to reality for themselves. To keep it brief, I think that "inter-objectivity", just like "inter-subjectivity", is a complicated subject that isn't merely "the majority deem what is inter-objective". No, I think it pertains more to a power dynamic, which tends to end up being the majority deem it so in more representational government systems. But that is for a later discussion. My main point here is that someone could reject someone else's claim at the "objective" or "subjective" level, but not be able to do so with respect to the inter-levels. I can apply to reality without contradiction that I value this particular loaf of bread at $100,000 (or pounds or pesos, whatever you fancy), but I cannot apply without contradiction the claim that that loaf of bread is valued inter-subjectively at $100,000 (it's probably not).

    Now, none of the aforementioned completely solves anything, but I thought I would get it on your radar so you can mow it over too.

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    Good morning Bob! My week was busy, but now I have time to reply with a cup of coffee in my hand. :)

    Let me address your second post first. Your example in how to view essential and non-essential properties is 100% spot on.

    I can understand your dislike with the term "plausibility". I came up with the term when I was first trying to separate that which had been applicably known, versus what was not applicably known. one of the considerations was tone. The initial inclination can be to dismiss plausibilities as lower level thinking. But the reality is, it is how we are able to discover anything new. I didn't want there to be an implicit suggestion that thinking in terms of plausibilities was innately wrong, its just when a person has a better alternative, it might be wiser to use a possibility or probability instead. And of course, any induction has an air of uncertainty until its applied to reality. Holding and using a possibility does not mean you are correct, even if it is more rational to do so.

    The second point of using the word was to find something more fundamental. One word descriptions are easier to think on, and if you have to add qualifiers to it later, you only have to qualify one word. But, I can agree after our conversation that the word doesn't accurately convey what was intended in a simple or fundamental way. The idea of a something being plausible is purely in our minds; an abstract wish that we can seek out in reality.

    So you are right. But with the above considerations, let me suggest some slight adjustments. I think the fundamental concept of 'speculation' is extremely good. A speculation conveys that it is an invention of the mind that you would seek to discover in application. I would not necessarily use the word "potential". Potential seems to me something reserved for probability and possibility, because we've applicably known them to exist at least once. If something is unknown to exist, does that mean it has potential? It seems too strong for speculation.

    Speculation though seems to convey the attitude of what I was trying to define with "applicable plausibility". Sherlock Holmes speculates, and his reason is to find out the reality to the mystery. Speculation seems to confer the intelligence behind "applicable plausibilities", and that when other modes of reasoning are exhausted, we sally forth into the unknown seeking reality.

    But of course, that leaves the lovely and incredibly useful word "potential" out in the cold again. I understand your draw to it, it defines many concepts conveniently. The problem is, "potential" is a word defined before I defined a split in knowledge between distinctive and applicable. While it is convenient, it has the same problem the old "knowledge" did. It is being implicitly used differently in many situations, and opens it up to confusing misuse and misinterpretation.

    It is annoying to me that I can't find a good fit for the word, as it is to you. Its a perfectly darn good word, but how to fit it in without leaving ambiguity or confusion? The best I can think of right now is the use of the word to separate cogent inductions versus non-cogent inductions. As we've noted, probabilities, possibilities, and speculations all have potential, by the fact that they aren't contradicted in the mind. But is that enough? I don't think so. That is because potential is also used to convey what is applicable. For example, if it is possible that a person who wakes up every day at 8 am could potentially wake up tomorrow at 8 am, that's a distinctive potential. But if unknown to us, they died five minutes prior to our prediction, there is no applicable potential anymore.

    Of course, that doesn't seem to make things any clearer. In the later case of applicable potential, I am addressing a reality that I have no knowledge of. Aren't all inductions prior to application in the same situation? Applicable potential seems to be a term when there is another party with knowledge, or in reference to the past. "I thought he would potentially wake up at 8 am today, but it turns out they had died last night". Or referencing the Gettier problem. "Smith thinks Jones potentially has 5 coins in his pocket, but we the audience knows, that he does not (thus this is not an applicable potential).

    So does potentiality describe cogent inductions within one's context? Because in one context, its a plausibility might have distinctive potential, while in another, it does not. In a way, the word potential has been subsumed into cogency. Any speculation has distinctive potential, as if it did not, it would be an irrational induction then.

    And that is my problem with the word potential. It seems to have been swallowed up by other terms. I can't find a unique and distinctive use of the word that serves a clear purpose anymore. Not that you should stop trying. I am merely conveying the difficulties using the word carries.

    I still think "inapplicable plausibilities" is useful, but should take a refinement from my original declaration as you have noted. I had inapplicable plausibility defined as "that which we are unable to apply to reality at this time." For example, let us say that a man uses a stick and shadows to determine the Earth is round, and calculate the approximate circumference. The only way to applicably know, is to travel the world and measure your journey. But at the time you do this in ancient Greece, it is outside of you or societies capability to test such a claim.

    Labeling such a speculation as irrational seems incorrect here. Think of many inventions such as the submarine thought of long before the technology was available to make it happen. I believe irrational inductions should remain a contradiction with what is applicably known. It serves a clear and distinct purpose with less ambiguity.

    But, what of inapplicable plausibilities that can never be applied? For example, a unicorn that cannot be sensed? This does seem irrational. Or perhaps, lacks potential? Have we finally stumbled up on a use for the word? A speculation with potential, versus a speculation without potential? This seems to fit in with your subcategories earlier. If so, then perhaps we can state that what is potential is distinctive knowledge which is constructed in such a way as it has a clear of measure of how it can be applied to reality. Perhaps this is what you were trying to say, and I think this could "potentially" be useful.

    I am still not sure if I am right in trying to logically tie the subject down to avoid deadlocks (as discussed in the previous post), but I have thought a starter point. Firstly, in order to be a "societal context", there must be some sort of inter-subjective or inter-objective agreement. If not, then it is not a "societal context"--and thereby is a "personal context". This cannot be contradicted as it is a deduced term. Secondly, the subject can hold a subjective claim and it's inter-subjective converse without contradiction. Likewise, the subject can hold an objective claim and it's inter-objective converse without contradiction.Bob Ross

    100% correct.

    In regards to inter-objectivity and objectivity, this is what I tried to communicate with distinctive and applicable contexts. An applicable context refers to what someone can applicably discover. A blind person will never applicably know what it is like to see, and thus in communicating with someone who can see, there is this applicable context to consider. Distinctive context is when we essentially have different applied knowledge and inductions based on what we've formed in our own heads.

    One great example is our discussion of the word "potential". You have a view of the word, and I have a view of the word. We are trying to discuss a use of the word that can satisfy both of our world outlooks. The issue is not that we are unable to attempt to apply the word as discussed, but what the meaning of the word should be between us and any others who would come along.

    I have tried to avoid using the word "objective" within contextual differences, because I think there is something core to the idea of "objective" being something apart from the subject, or in this case, subjects. As you have noticed, there is a dissatisfaction if a person re-appropriates a word that is too far from our common vernacular. I believe a way to avoid this is to try to find the essential properties of the word that society has, and avoid adjusting those too much. In this case, I think objective should avoid anything that deals with the subject, as I believe that counters one of the essential properties that society considers in its current use of the word.

    Fantastic thoughts, and please continue at it. I will address your first post shortly.
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    Likewise, I thoroughly enjoy our conversations! I have a lot of respect for how well thought out your positions are! I don't think enough people on this forum give you enough credit where it is due! I just wanted to make sure that you are just as intrigued by this conversation as me (:Bob Ross

    Thank you! And yes, I am enjoying the conversation greatly.

    Just as a quick example, in the abstract, I can legitimately determine essential properties X, Y, Z and (distinctly different) essential properties A and B to the same term. So when I refer to that term, it could be in relation to either one of those two essential property sets (so to speak), and there is no contradiction here to be found: ambiguity is not a contradiction (in the form of A is A and not A).Bob Ross

    The solution to this is to use contexts. If you recall my example of the word tree. One of my friends views a bush as a tree, while the other who has some knowledge of botany, considers that the essential properties of the "tree" do not match what he defines as a "bush". Yet, if the friend does not want to use the context of botany, there is nothing in reality that forces them to do so besides possible social ostracization and shame.

    Although I think we both agree that the definitions that provide the most clarity should prevail, my dilemma is: "what justification do I have for that?". What in the epistemology restricts the other person from simply disagreeing? I found nothing stopping them from doing so. That is a worry for me, as it seems like, if I follow the trajectory of the epistemology in this manner, we end up with incomprehensible amounts of deadlocks (stalemates).Bob Ross

    I think your proof is great, I really have no disagreements with it. But there is a core assumption that we're making. That the person decides to be rational. You can never force a person to be rational. You can persuade them, pressure them, and give them the opportunity to be, but you can never force them to be. Knowledge is a tool. Someone can always decide not to use a tool. I could tell a person why they should use a screw driver to take the screws out instead of using pliers. But if someone wants to use pliers, even though its more difficult and less rational, that is their choice.

    Likewise, I was wondering: "couldn't the other person just reject possibility (or some other induction hierarchy) as more cogent than plausibility (or some other induction)?". I think, as is, although you argue just fine for it, they could. They could utilize the most basic discrete and applicable knowledge principles in your epistemology to reject the hierarchy without contradiction.Bob Ross

    Again, this is true. I don't think its a problem for the epistemology, that a person can choose not to use it. I think the problem with the epistemology, is that it reveals that humans do not have to be rational. That is an uncomfortable notion. It not only reveals that about others, but about ourselves as well. How often have we rejected rationality in the pursuit of our own desires and biases? The idea of knowledge as some type of objective truth that forces us to follow reality is appealing. But at the end of the day, there is nothing that forces us to do so.

    That being said, I wanted to point out a slight issue with your proof for the hierarchy. If you recall, I use math based on the distance from deductive certainty. Knowledge is 1, and any induction based off of that is less than one. Something like speculation is a culmination of knowledge and possibilities. So 1 * x (probability) * y (created speculation. I don't use the term "immediateness" because it isn't a clear and provable term. One could "immediately" conclude a speculation, but that doesn't make it more cogent then a long ago concluded probability.

    The second idea I have been thinking of, to state it briefly, is what I can "axiomatic contracts". What I mean is that, in the case that something isn't strictly (rigidly) pon anchored, two subjects could still anchor it to pon with respect to an agreed upon axiom. For example, although my previous argument is much stronger (I would say), we could also legitimately ban ambiguity IFF the other subject agrees to the axiom that they want to convey their meaning to me. With that axiom in mind, thereby signing an "axiomatic contract", they would be obligated to provide as much clarity as possible, otherwise they would be violating that "axiomatic contract" by means of violating the pon.Bob Ross

    Nothing wrong with this either. The issue once again is, "its their choice". Its so nice to think that we could find an epistemology that is irrefutably rational, and everyone would line up to use it. The reality is, people are not motivated entirely by rationality. Even with the perfect epistemology, not everyone would be capable of, or willing to use it. But is this a problem with the epistemology I've proposed? No, I think this is just a reality of human kind, and a problem that any epistemology will run into.
  • Bob Ross
    98
    Hello @Philosophim,

    Fantastic points! To keep this condensed into one response, I am going to try and address your points more generally (but let me know if there's anything I didn't properly address). Just as a side note, this is entirely my fault, as I was the one who double posted (:

    Firstly, I think some exposition into "potentiality" is probably necessary. In general, although I may just be misunderstanding you, I think that some of your concerns are perfectly warranted (and thus I will be trying to resolve them) and some are simply misunderstandings of what I mean by "potentiality". First off, potentiality is an abstract consideration. You seemed to be trying to apply potentiality distinctively and applicably (and finding issues with it): abstract considerations are always applications to reality. I don't think that "application to reality" is limited to empirical verifications: abstract considerations are perfectly reasonable (I think). For example:

    For example, if it is possible that a person who wakes up every day at 8 am could potentially wake up tomorrow at 8 am, that's a distinctive potential. But if unknown to us, they died five minutes prior to our prediction, there is no applicable potential anymore.

    I think this is a misunderstanding of potentiality. Firstly, what do you mean by distinctive potential? Anything that "isn't contradicted in the abstract" (assuming it isn't directly experienced as the contrary) is something that got applied to reality without contradiction. I might just be misremembering what "distinctive knowledge" is, but I am thinking of the differentiation within my head (my thoughts which haven't been applied yet to see if the contents hold). If that is the case, then potentiality can never be distinctive knowledge, it is the application of that distinctive knowledge in the abstract. If I have a belief that unicorns exist, I can abstractly verify whether it is "true" that I have a belief that unicorns exist. If I can't contradict the idea that I am having a belief that unicorns exist, then that is applicable knowledge (because I applied it to reality without contradiction). Secondly, this objection you are voicing also applies to possibility. If I have experienced person X get up at 8 am before, then I can say it is "possible" for X to get up at 8 am tomorrow morning. However, unbeknownst to me, they actually died today: therefore it isn't possible for them to get up at 8 am tomorrow. I don't see this as a flaw in potentiality or possibility, because it is not about what you don't know: it is about, contextually, what you do know. Let's take the same situation, for possibility and potentiality, but add you to the mix. Let's say that I don't know X died today, but you do. For me, it is the most cogent position for me to hold that X can "possibly" (and "potentially") wake up at 8 am tomorrow. For you, it is the exact contrary. The way I interpreted "no applicable potential anymore" is that of something objective, which isn't what I am getting at with potentiality or possibility.

    However, I think you are right in potentiality seems to be consumed by other terms, but I'll get into that in later on (I think we need to hash some other more fundamental things first). I've realized that, although your epistemology is great so far, it doesn't really address the bulk of what epistemologies address. This is because your epistemology, thus far, has addressed some glasses of water (possibility, probability, and irrational inductions), but yet simply defined the whole ocean as "plausibility". Even with a separation of "inapplicable" and "applicable", I find that this still doesn't address a vast majority of "knowledge". So I don't think keeping a concise, one-word description of "speculations" is productive unless we dive into the subparts of that gigantic ocean.

    Now, with that in mind, I want to really explicate how narrow "possibility" truly is. I think it is, as of now, not clearly defined. Let's recall that possibility is "that which has been experienced at least once before". Now, let's dive into your example you gave about the coins:

    "Smith thinks Jones potentially has 5 coins in his pocket, but we the audience knows, that he does not (thus this is not an applicable potential).

    Again, as a side note, the audience would claim it has no potential and Smith would (no contradiction here). But at a deeper level, imagine Smith has never experienced 5 coins in a pocket, but he's experienced coins before. Therefore, Smith cannot claim that it is "possible" for there to be 5 coins in Jones' pocket. He can speculate based off of the possibility of coins and the abstract consideration that he can't contradict the idea that 5 coins could be in Jones' pocket. Therefore, his position is a possibility (coins) -> speculation (5 coins in pocket). What would he say? He can't say it is "possible". Normally, Smith would have, in colloquial speech, deemed this abstract speculation as a "possibility", but now it seems as though he has been stripped of his words. Therefore, I introduced something back from the old word "possibility": the abstract consideration. He can claim "it is potentially the case that Jones' has 5 coins in his pocket". But this can get weirder. Imagine Smith has experienced 5 coins in his own pocket, but not 5 coins in Jones' pocket: then he hasn't experienced it before. Therefore, it is still not a possibility, it just has the potential to occur. Now, I think we are both inclined to try and reconcile this with something along the lines of "contexts, bob, contexts". But what are "contexts"? If we allow Smith to decide what a context is, then it seems as though the epistemology is simply telling him to do whatever he wants (as long as he doesn't contradict himself). But then we could make this much, much weirder. Imagine Smith has experienced 5 coins in Jones' pocket yesterday, but he hasn't today. Well, if the context revolves around time, then Smith still can't claim it is possible. It is only potentially the case. Likewise, Garry could have a location based contextual system, where he's experienced 5 coins in Jones' pocket in location X, but Jones' is now in location Y. Garry and Smith would agree that it is not "possible" (not to be confused with "impossibility") that Jones has 5 coins in his pocket--but for completely different reasons. Moreover, as you can imagine, without clearly defined meaning of "context", Smith could claim it is "possible" while Garry claims it isn't. But to take "experience it at least once before" literally, then possibility is incredibly narrow. And to take it not literally is to create a superficial boundary with no clear meaning (as of yet).

    Also, I would like to point out, it wouldn't really make sense for Smith, although it is a speculation, to just merely answer the question with "I speculate he has 5 coins in his pocket", because Smith isn't necessarily claiming that Jones does have 5 coins, he is merely assessing the potentiality. Again, at a bare minimum, he would have to had experienced 5 coins in Jones' pocket before in order to claim it is possible. Most of the time we don't have that kind of oddly specific knowledge, therefore potentiality was born: it is a less strong form of possibility. It is to apply a concept to reality, in the abstract, without contradiction. Likewise, imagine Smith has experienced 4 coins in Jones' pocket, but not five. Then it also wouldn't be a possibility that Jones has 5 coins in his pocket: it would be an abstract consideration that is not contradicted.

    Furthermore, I would like to revisit the 8 am dead person example: it isn't necessarily the case that it is impossible either just because they are dead. Let's say I heard from a trusted friend that they died today: I didn't experience their death. This would be an abstract consideration. Do I trust them? If I do, what logically follows? It logically follows that there's no potential for them to wake up tomorrow at 8 am. But notice that in doing so, I've necessarily revoked any "possibility" as well, but not on the basis of "impossibility".

    To sum it up, I think we need to clearly and concisely define "context", "possibility", "impossibility", and "potentiality". If I can make up whatever I want for "context", I could be so literally specific that there is no such thing as a repetitive context, or I could be so ambiguous that everything is possible. Then we are relying on "meaningfulness", or some other principle not described in your epistemology, to deter them from this. If so, then why not include it clearly in the epistemology?

    I had inapplicable plausibility defined as "that which we are unable to apply to reality at this time."

    I think that, in this sense, I agree. But originally it encompassed two senses: that which can't be applied right now, and that which never will be. The latter is irrational. The former may be rational in the sense that it isn't an irrational induction, but it isn't necessarily the case that it should be pursued either. It would merely be a speculative potential: specifically, given no further context, an incredible speculative potential. Which leads me to my next question: when you say "unable to apply", what do you mean? I think that if nothing can be applied at all, then it isn't worth pursuing. If you can't find any evidence for that concept or idea at all, why pursue it? The great inventors of the past, albeit invented "crazy" "impossible" things, had some sort of evidence backing their speculations. They didn't tell themselves: "I am trying to discover a teapot 100 billion light years away in another galaxy, of which I have no evidence to support it is there, but I am going to incessantly keep trying anyways".

    For example, let us say that a man uses a stick and shadows to determine the Earth is round, and calculate the approximate circumference. The only way to applicably know, is to travel the world and measure your journey.

    I disagree. The journey across the world is not the only way to verify the spherical nature of the earth. The stick and shadows is just the beginning. One can find many more forms of scientific evidence (that doesn't require a round trip): it would be, given that kind of evidence it has, a "credible speculative potential".

    However, I do have my worries, like you, about even calling them "speculations": a lot of enormously backed scientific theories would be a "credible speculative potential", which seems to undermine it quite significantly. This is honestly the main issue with "plausibilities": it is really where epistemology mainly lies. It may be in our best interest to just dedicate more terminology, more explanations, towards speculations: there has to be further hierarchies within it. This is why, upon further reflection, although it is great so far, I don't think your epistemology really gets into any of the pressing dilemmas an epistemology is supposed to address. Now we must determine the thresholds of evidence that would constitute a scientific theory as significantly more reliable than, let's say, simply a man speculating with a stick and shadows (both of which could potentially be considered "credible speculative potentials"). Don't get me wrong, your epistemology does a splendid job at the fundamentals, especially in terms of inductions, but there's a lot of work needed to be hashed out in terms of speculations.

    I believe irrational inductions should remain a contradiction with what is applicably known

    I disagree, if what you mean by "application" is empirical evidence. I am claiming potentiality is applicably known (always). I can applicably know, in the abstract, that a logically unobtainable idea is irrational to hold. For example, take an undetectable unicorn:

    1. A truth-apt claim is a claim that has the ability to be falsifiable (true or false).
    2. An undetectable unicorn is unfalsifiable.
    3. An undetectable unicorn is not truth-apt.
    4. The pursual of a claim implies it is truth-apt.
    5. An undetectable unicorn is not pursuable.
    6. Therefore, to attempt to pursue the idea of an undetectable unicorn, leads to a contradiction: the pursual implies its truth-aptness, but yet the claim itself is not truth-apt.

    I have tried to avoid using the word "objective" within contextual differences, because I think there is something core to the idea of "objective" being something apart from the subject, or in this case, subjects. As you have noticed, there is a dissatisfaction if a person re-appropriates a word that is too far from our common vernacular. I believe a way to avoid this is to try to find the essential properties of the word that society has, and avoid adjusting those too much. In this case, I think objective should avoid anything that deals with the subject, as I believe that counters one of the essential properties that society considers in its current use of the word.

    Although you are right that I am refurbishing the term "objective", I think it is a step in the right direction. I think this is actually what people implicitly are doing when they say something is "objective": it is something they've deemed to out of their control (an object). Some people will go a step further and claim there's actual an absolute something out there, of which is separate from all subjects: this is a speculation that lacks potential. For a color blind person, I think they will be more than happy to accept that what is objective for them, isn't objective for other people. So, although I agree and you are right, I think society needs to stop making such bold, unnecessary claims that there's some sort of absolute instantiation of objects. It is something that is unfalsifiable.

    That the person decides to be rational. You can never force a person to be rational. You can persuade them, pressure them, and give them the opportunity to be, but you can never force them to be. Knowledge is a tool. Someone can always decide not to use a tool

    This is true. But I want to be careful with the term "rationality": I find too many people using it in an ambiguous way to justify their reasoning (without actually justifying it). For me, "rationality" is a inter-subjectively defined concept. Therefore, we are not all rational beings (like Kant thought), but we are all reasoning beings. My goal, in terms of epistemology, is to attempt to make the arguments based off of reasoning, so as to make it virtually impossible for someone to deny it (if they have the capacity to understand the arguments). I agree that people don't have to be rational, but they are "reasonable" (just meaning "reasoning").

    I look forward to hearing from you,
    Bob
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