Author Topic: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?  (Read 4296 times)

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Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #29 on: January 15, 2013, 01:29:41 AM »
Ironically, he will count up how many stupid answers he got from atheists.

Then he'll say something about numbers not existing right after using some.

I vote we talk about something else.

No, I believe numbers exist as abstract objects grasped only by man's innate structures given to him by God who made him in his image.

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #30 on: January 15, 2013, 01:30:51 AM »

Offline wheels5894

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #31 on: January 15, 2013, 06:35:55 AM »
True, but he did lead them into the oddest calculation of all - well the Christians really -

1 + 1 + 1 = 1


God, Jesus and Holy Spirit = 1 god that is!

That is a Roman Catholic myth that I have been exposing for a long time:

http://eternalpropositions.wordpress.com/drakes-triadology-stuff/

http://eternalpropositions.wordpress.com/category/triadology/


and recently:

http://www.theologyonline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=89015

I would love to discuss this with you but I would hate to break up thsi thread. Start a new thread to discuss this, please.
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such that its falshood would be more miraculous than the facts it endeavours to establish. (David Hume)

Offline wheels5894

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #32 on: January 15, 2013, 06:38:51 AM »
OK, you have now had enough replies, Olivianus, please tell us the answer.
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such that its falshood would be more miraculous than the facts it endeavours to establish. (David Hume)

Offline Azdgari

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #33 on: January 15, 2013, 07:43:44 AM »
Are you saying that there are universal constants. I thought the above posters had agreed that there were no universal constants but,

Quote
"Object-division is subjective, something we impose on nature to help us organize and deal with it in our minds."
Azdgari

Universal constants are not object-divisions.  Please read before commenting.

EDIT to clarify:  Amount is objective.  But we have no way of measuring amounts in a way that is meaningful and can be communicated to others, except by imposing object-divisions on either the stuff whose amount is being measured, or on a measuring tool that can be compared with the amount of stuff being measured.

Take a ruler, for example.  It has 30 1-cm marks, because the pattern of its surface is something we've divided into things we call centimeters.  Distance is continuous - it is not, in nature, divided into centimeters.  But centimeters are a useful tool for measuring an amount of distance.  They are artificial.  They are a tool.

I hope this was educational for you.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2013, 09:03:32 AM by Azdgari »
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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #34 on: January 15, 2013, 08:46:29 AM »
Having received in the historical order-the genus of being, the self attestation of the coherency of scripture-the logical order of propositions-the genus of epistemology, my ego wakes up to the reality of its regeneration. The knowledge of my existence and the assurance of my salvation is thus implied from the teaching of scripture and the conviction that the scripture is true.

I'm amazed you typed all that with your one finger.
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

Offline plethora

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #35 on: January 15, 2013, 09:03:45 AM »
I believe numbers exist as abstract objects

Agreed.

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grasped only by man's innate structures

The ability to understand numerical concepts has arisen in many non-human agents (Dolphins are a great example). But I'll grant that the ability to map numbers to symbols is a skill only known to have arisen in humans so far.

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given to him by God who made him in his image.

You can believe this all you like. Until you can prove it, I reject your claim.
The truth doesn't give a shit about our feelings.

Offline jaimehlers

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #36 on: January 15, 2013, 10:28:44 AM »
Then the laws of science do not have independent existence for mathematics is the essence of science. Kline says, “As we shall see, the most well developed physical theories are entirely mathematical.” [Mathematics: The Loss of Certainty (New York: Oxford University Press, 1980), pg. 7]
Yep.  Math and science both are dependent upon other things to have meaning.  Math would be useless without quantities to be operated on; science would be useless without math and things to describe with it.  But they're hardly alone.  For example, your religious belief is dependent on you and other believers like you.  If every believer were to vanish, the belief itself would vanish into nothingness.

That's the key difference between science and religion.  The things that math and science depend on are not tied to human existence.  Quantities to count and things to describe will still exist after humans are gone.  Even more abstract concepts, like truth, are still derived from physical reality.  But a religious belief is not.  It is derived from a lack of sufficient knowledge; basically, imagining a being to do something not understood rather than actually trying to understand it.  That is why it cannot cope easily with increased knowledge.  If the lack of knowledge goes away, the belief has nothing to support it but complex and convoluted rationalizations.

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #37 on: January 15, 2013, 11:46:33 AM »
Azdgari

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Universal constants are not object-divisions.  Please read before commenting.

That itself is a distinction. What are universal constants then? Modes of a monad? And how does one grasp universal constants? By induction?

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EDIT to clarify:  Amount is objective.  But we have no way of measuring amounts in a way that is meaningful and can be communicated to others”

>>>Then your assertion that it is objective is ad hoc.

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Distance is continuous

>>>That is just a Jesuitical way of admitting space is indefinable and you don’t know what space is or what these numbers could possibly be representing. 

Quote
But centimeters are a useful tool for measuring an amount of distance.  They are artificial.  They are a tool.

Then you have conflated operation and demonstration.

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #38 on: January 15, 2013, 11:49:04 AM »
Anfauglir
 
Quote
I'm amazed you typed all that with your one finger.

 :o

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #39 on: January 15, 2013, 11:52:01 AM »
plethora

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You can believe this all you like. Until you can prove it, I reject your claim.

By proof you mean empirical proof I am assuming yes? If so, I have a question for you:

By the assumption you have that empiricism is the paragon of knowledge, do you admit then that an atheist must have knowledge to be so defined as an atheist? That is, that you have first committed yourself to empiricism in order to be an atheist and thus an atheist to be so defined cannot be a skeptic? Is that right?

Offline Azdgari

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #40 on: January 15, 2013, 12:46:14 PM »
That itself is a distinction. What are universal constants then? Modes of a monad? And how does one grasp universal constants? By induction?

Typically they are ratios.  Those do not depend on object-divisions.  And I never said that distinction was subjective.  I said that object-division was subjective.  I suggest you heed my advice from my last post:  Read before commenting.

Quote
EDIT to clarify:  Amount is objective.  But we have no way of measuring amounts in a way that is meaningful and can be communicated to others”

>>>Then your assertion that it is objective is ad hoc.

You cut out a part of my sentence in order to make me seem like I was saying something different from what I actually said.

This is a form of lying.

>>>That is just a Jesuitical way of admitting space is indefinable and you don’t know what space is or what these numbers could possibly be representing.

No, it's not.  Wow, see how easy it is for me to reject your claim when you don't bother to back it up with any sort of reasoning?

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But centimeters are a useful tool for measuring an amount of distance.  They are artificial.  They are a tool.

Then you have conflated operation and demonstration.

Please elaborate, if communication is your goal.  Otherwise, you're just a troll who isn't here to think.
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Online screwtape

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #41 on: January 15, 2013, 01:55:57 PM »
I think I buried that myth here: http://eternalpropositions.wordpress.com/2012/04/04/book-review-morris-klines-mathematics-the-loss-of-certainty-picking-up-where-dr-clark-left-off/

Nope.  You stand corrected.  You did not bury that myth.  You only think you did because you are not as knowledgeable as you think you are and you have an enormous ego.  Plus, you are stuck on the belief that no one has progressed from ancient greek philosophy.  You're a funny man.

But you didn't really address the point I was making.  In light of that, I dub thee, Troll.

I thought the above posters had agreed that there were no universal constants but,
[/quote]

Are you disagreeing with me or are you just trying to instigate trouble between me and Az?  Nevermind.  Either way I'm dismissing you.

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Online screwtape

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #42 on: January 15, 2013, 02:03:22 PM »
Question for you Olivi,

What's up with this?
http://eternalpropositions.wordpress.com/averting-the-coming-race-war/

It seems you are not just a religious loon.  You are also a Southern racist loon.  Nice combination.

You are a man with a lot of hate.
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #43 on: January 15, 2013, 02:50:05 PM »
Frankly, I'm not impressed with Kline's arguments.  To boil all the wordy verbiage away, his position is that you can't really prove anything, therefore religion (more specifically, if math and science cannot be proven, the criticisms towards religion cannot be proven either, therefore religion stands uncriticized).  The problem is that this begs the question.  Even if you can't prove some mythical "independent existence" for math or science, which are objective in nature, how much less can you prove the "independent existence" of something that's entirely subjective, like a religious belief in some deity?

Simply put, you cannot.  You can't even know where to begin to look, let alone how to actually prove it.  Therefore, your only option if you don't want to admit that you might be wrong is to attack the foundations of scientific reason and knowledge, so that you can pretend that your belief is untouchable by science.  Except that this is pure sophistry.  It's not even good sophistry.  It's basically the equivalent of sticking your fingers in your ears, going "lalalala I can't hear you", and then claiming that your belief is untouched because you drowned out the criticisms against it.

It doesn't work, Olivianus.  You're just wasting our time and yours.  Though, frankly, you're wasting much more of your time than ours.  It took you what, 35 hours to read that book, and another several to write up your post on it?  It took me about 10 minutes to read over your post and then another few to get at the essential part of it.  But hey, if you want to waste your time like that, don't let me stop you.  Just don't expect it to be convincing, anymore than arguing that science is somehow based on "atomism" or "monism", neither of which it is actually based on.  You see, science is nothing more than a set of tools we use to examine the universe.  It doesn't need to have some "independent existence" that we have to waste time trying to divine, anymore than I have to try to figure out if a hammer "independently exists" before I use it to pound in a nail.

Offline Garja

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #44 on: January 15, 2013, 03:11:07 PM »
Humans label stuff. "Blue" doesn't exist anymore than "one", or even "man" or "woman". They are semi-arbitrary labels used to describe the world.

So then the laws of science are not realities, they are conventions? Colloquialisms?

No, but we do need a way to explain such things to other people.... that's why we have spoken/written language yes?
If I have 1 banana and you want to trade me for 1 orange, it makes since for me to make that trade.  However if I have 1 BUNCH of bananas (consisting of 8 individuals) and you want to trade me for 1 orange, wouldn't it make since for me to be able to convey to you why that is an unfair trade?  This is not mysterious.  You obviously WANT to see God in the explanation, but it is simply not needed.
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Offline HAL

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #45 on: January 15, 2013, 03:45:47 PM »

Offline jaimehlers

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #46 on: January 15, 2013, 03:52:24 PM »
Yep, the street certainly seems wet, does it not?

Offline Bagheera

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #47 on: January 15, 2013, 04:41:19 PM »
How do we account for the existence of numbers?

They're symbols we have devised in order to better relate to our environment. An element of communication.

Are there multiple physical things to justify the existence of numbers?

No. Numbers exist because we perceive things as discreet, and devised symbols we can assign to them as a way of better relating to our environment.

How do we know there are multiple existing things?

We don't know. We observe using our limited sensory package and processing equipment, and build on that. Our perception of things as discreet is a survival mechanism; without it, we could not tell a tiger from the bush; it would be simply 'the universe ate him'.

A thought: the necessity for perceiving things as discreet is as simple as dividing "me" from "not me". Numbers are symbols devised from the necessity of being able to communicate information.

Offline Tero

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #48 on: January 15, 2013, 06:27:24 PM »
Well of course the physucal world is a shared illusion. Or it could be just mine.

So? I can still count to 10, maybe even 20. Fingers, toes.

Offline HAL

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #49 on: January 15, 2013, 06:33:43 PM »
How do we account for the existence of numbers? Are there multiple physical things to justify the existence of numbers? How do we know there are multiple existing things?

How do we account for the existence of screwdrivers? Are there multiple physical things to justify the existence of screwdrivers? How do we know there are multiple existing things?

Offline kin hell

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #50 on: January 15, 2013, 07:18:16 PM »
...the concept of one "(1)"   as in "I am" or the "universe is" automatically presumes/predicts/implies the companion concept of  possible "an-other" or "more than one".

That we need tools (titles/numbers/structure) to share this concept is itself justification for the existence of numbers.

If we have to share ideas, we are acknowledging by that need, that there exists outside of our solipsist self .... an-other. 

That acknowledged division is the proof that demands/requires numbers so as the idea/evidence can be accurately shared.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2013, 07:20:30 PM by kin hell »
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Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #51 on: January 16, 2013, 12:10:47 AM »
Azdgari

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Typically they are ratios.

Which begs the question of this entire thread.   

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Those do not depend on object-divisions.

You have yet to define what you mean by "object-divisions". I took that to mean distinctions within an object that a subject is allegedly perceiving.

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And I never said that distinction was subjective.

Seeing you made no definition of object division and division itself is a distinction, it is not my fault if there was a misunderstanding.

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I said that object-division was subjective.

How does that differ from “distinctions within an object that a subject is allegedly perceiving”?

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I suggest you heed my advice from my last post:  Read before commenting.

There is no definition of object-division to read.

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EDIT to clarify:  Amount is objective.  But we have no way of measuring amounts in a way that is meaningful and can be communicated to others”

>>>Then your assertion that it is objective is ad hoc.

Quote
You cut out a part of my sentence in order to make me seem like I was saying something different from what I actually said.

I already addressed what the latter part of that sentence is saying. When you impute something to something else, that reality which is imputed is not in the thing that receives the imputation. It is imposed as a covering. I have to deal with this issue in theology.  You are still making the object-division something imputed and not real, or at least not real in the physical sense.

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No, it's not.  Wow, see how easy it is for me to reject your claim when you don't bother to back it up with any sort of reasoning?

Asserting your opinion is neither an argument nor is it an explanation. When you say “Distance is continuous”, what you are saying is that there is no changeless object to be perceived through qualitative change. Thus there is no object of knowledge.

Quote
Please elaborate, if communication is your goal.  Otherwise, you're just a troll who isn't here to think.

An operation is how you use something. A demonstration is how you know something. You think that an operation has as much knowledge in it as a syllogism. I am saying that is a conflation of categories. For one, a friend of mine who used to work for NASA and the NSA, has a doctorate in space physics and has been teaching physics at the graduate level for many years told me that all the professional scientists he knew abandoned atomism for Monism. If you believe in Monism you have no justification for any logical or propositional demonstration of anything. Propositions require distinctions between subject and predicate, and the first law of logic also requires distinction. You can call be as many names as you like, but the merciless facts of this issue are on my side not yours.

Now if you could elaborate on what an object division is if I have mistaken your meaning.

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #52 on: January 16, 2013, 12:20:29 AM »
screwtape

Quote
Nope.  You stand corrected.  You did not bury that myth.  You only think you did because you are not as knowledgeable as you think you are and you have an enormous ego.  Plus, you are stuck on the belief that no one has progressed from ancient greek philosophy.  You're a funny man.

I am going to need more than your opinion to be convinced.

Quote
But you didn't really address the point I was making.  In light of that, I dub thee, Troll.

Yes I did. You were discounting the OT religion because they supposedly did not understand universal constant and calculus. I challenged the premise. You yourself do not understand calculus as one of your own professionals has admitted. I am not interested in your squabbles with Kline. I am not interested in knowing more about math and the way secularists think about it, than a man who taught the subject professionally for decades. It is you who is guilty of hubris.

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #53 on: January 16, 2013, 12:22:19 AM »
Question for you Olivi,

What's up with this?
http://eternalpropositions.wordpress.com/averting-the-coming-race-war/

It seems you are not just a religious loon.  You are also a Southern racist loon.  Nice combination.

You are a man with a lot of hate.

The first and second statement is Abusive ad Hominem. The third and fourth is simply your opinion.

I see no arguments to address here.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2013, 12:54:18 AM by Olivianus »

Offline jaimehlers

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #54 on: January 16, 2013, 12:28:52 AM »
"Changeless objects to be perceived through qualitative change" again?  A mouthful of nothing is more like it.  Fancy doubletalk to try to pretend that such a thing actually exists in reality, rather than in Olivianus's imagination.  For all that we can't fully perceive reality, it's still the arbiter of what exists and what doesn't - not his theology, and not the logic he uses to try to justify his theology.  In short, fancy arguments don't cut it.

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #55 on: January 16, 2013, 12:42:00 AM »
jaimehlers

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Frankly, I'm not impressed with Kline's arguments.

The man is not a Christian. He is one of your own. I am not interetd in your disgruntles with a man who taught your worldview professinally for decades. 


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To boil all the wordy verbiage away, his position is that you can't really prove anything, therefore religion (more specifically, if math and science cannot be proven, the criticisms towards religion cannot be proven either, therefore religion stands uncriticized).

Hold on, just above you said that you were not impressed with his arguments. Now you are agreeing with him. I don't follow. I would agree that neither empiricism or religion can be empirically proved. But then that begs the question I asked plethora at reply #39. 

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The problem is that this begs the question.  Even if you can't prove some mythical "independent existence" for math or science, which are objective in nature, how much less can you prove the "independent existence" of something that's entirely subjective, like a religious belief in some deity?

Again it depends on what you mean by “prove”. Do you mean an inductive process in a historical series, or do you mean a propositional demonstration in a logical series? 

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Simply put, you cannot.  You can't even know where to begin to look, let alone how to actually prove it.  Therefore, your only option if you don't want to admit that you might be wrong is to attack the foundations of scientific reason and knowledge, so that you can pretend that your belief is untouchable by science.  Except that this is pure sophistry.  It's not even good sophistry.  It's basically the equivalent of sticking your fingers in your ears, going "lalalala I can't hear you", and then claiming that your belief is untouched because you drowned out the criticisms against it.

Please answer the question that I posted at #39.

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By the assumption you have that empiricism is the paragon of knowledge, do you admit then that an atheist must have knowledge to be so defined as an atheist? That is, that you have first committed yourself to empiricism in order to be an atheist and thus an atheist to be so defined cannot be a skeptic? Is that right?


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It doesn't work, Olivianus.  You're just wasting our time and yours.  Though, frankly, you're wasting much more of your time than ours.  It took you what, 35 hours to read that book, and another several to write up your post on it?  It took me about 10 minutes to read over your post and then another few to get at the essential part of it.
You have not addressed a single statement he made. But then again the significance of that depends on how you answer #39. It seems to me that what you are saying is that I am the only one who must prove my system. I think I can with coherency theory in a propositional series. But, if you think that an atheist, to be so defined, can be an absolute skeptic, you may feel unmoved that I have destroyed the basis of empiricism. You may be thinking to yourself:

 Ok so what that you have refuted empiricism? You haven’t empirically proved your God, thus I am content to remain an atheist until a proof arises that satisfies me.


But that really begs the question doesn’t it? Can an atheist truly exist in that state of ignorance? Every single atheist mindset that I have come across is built on the assumed truth and the assumed commitment of empiricism. Every single one. The atheist position is that no empirical proof has been provided that satisfies your conscience. Thus, to be defined as an atheist you must keep empiricism standing or the whole mental structure comes tumbling down with it.   

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But hey, if you want to waste your time like that, don't let me stop you.  Just don't expect it to be convincing, anymore than arguing that science is somehow based on "atomism" or "monism", neither of which it is actually based on.  You see, science is nothing more than a set of tools we use to examine the universe.  It doesn't need to have some "independent existence" that we have to waste time trying to divine, anymore than I have to try to figure out if a hammer "independently exists" before I use it to pound in a nail.

The problem with this, is that I was raised in the public school system and they don’t tell you this. They tell you that their view of the universe has been proven, objectively and established as the only rational worldview.

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #56 on: January 16, 2013, 12:53:53 AM »
Garja

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No, but we do need a way to explain such things to other people.... that's why we have spoken/written language yes?

Yes, but I am under the impression that language and numbers, at least in substance, not necessarily in form, mode and circumstance, are innate, not derived by sensation.

[qquote]If I have 1 banana and you want to trade me for 1 orange, it makes since for me to make that trade.  However if I have 1 BUNCH of bananas (consisting of 8 individuals) and you want to trade me for 1 orange, wouldn't it make since for me to be able to convey to you why that is an unfair trade? [/quote]

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This is not mysterious.

When did I say that numbers were mysterious?

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You obviously WANT to see God in the explanation

Not directly. I want to see INNATE STRUCTURES in that explanation. I think a divine being is necessary for innate structures to exist but directly that is not the point.

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but it is simply not needed.

With reference to operation, that is correct. Atheists make decisions with their God given innate structures every day but they do not adnmit it to be the case, so yes I agree that seeing God in these things is not necessary.

Offline Olivianus

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Re: What is the justification for the existence of numbers?
« Reply #57 on: January 16, 2013, 12:57:33 AM »
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How do we account for the existence of screwdrivers? Are there multiple physical things to justify the existence of screwdrivers? How do we know there are multiple existing things?

That is a diversion. My view does not require a demonstration of physical things. Your's does. But then again you may reply that you can be an atheist while being a total skeptic which in that case I need you to answer the question I asked at reply #39.