Epistemology Proves God

Epistemology is the branch of philosophy that covers theories of what knowledge is, what it is not, what it’s properties are, and what it’s properties are not. At the center of the field is the question of what a WORKING definition of “knowledge” would be.

What it means for a definition of knowledge to WORK is for that definition to be coherent, logical, and function as an answer to the question of whether or not human beings are able to have absolute certainty about the truth or falsity of at least some propositions.

It must be coherent because a definition that is incoherent, or in other words does not express something that the human mind can concieve of, is meaningless, and meaning is essential to a definition. Meaning is essential to a definition because the very concept of a definition presupposes the objective, universal nature of the laws of logic (Namely, the law of indentity, which states that A = A; or, that any given entity tautologically “is what it is.” The law of excluded middle, which states that any given entity is either A or NOT A; it is what it is or it is not what it was initially supposed to be, and instead is something ELSE. And finally the law of non-contradiction, which states that any given entity cannot be both A and NOT A at the same time and in the same sense. A thing may change from what it is to something else, but it cannot be both what it is and what it is NOT at the same time and in the same sense.) These universal, objective laws that govern all of reality must not be overlooked per the stating of what the essential properties of a “definition” are - one of which being that a defintion distinguishes an entity from all other entities. So since a definition marks out one entity as distinct from all others (A from all non-A’s, so to speak), a definition must be meaningful. For it “does” this “act” of distinguishing per it being composed of PROPOSITIONS that are understandable (meaningful) to people. So all definitions must be meaningful (understandable; coherent) and therefore the working definition of knowledge that is in question must be meaningful (coherent). Again, what does it mean for this working definition of “knowledge” to be coherent? It means that the definition must be intelligible to our minds. It must make sense. It must be understandable. Understandable to who? It must be understandable to anyone who is able to properly engage in reading or hearing or having the propositions that make up said definition symbolized to them or communicated to them in any of the sundry ways human beings have come to be able to accurately express propositions. So it need not be understandable to, say, dogs, cats, or someone who purposely fudges or ignores the rules of grammar or the laws of logic that govern the rules of grammar (and everything else), in order for the definition to meet the criteria of coherency.

Well, this opens up the larger question of what qualifies as “truth.” Or more classicly put: “What is truth?” For if the definition of knowledge violates a fundamental principle of "truth, " it cannot be valid. The only sensical, consistent theory of what “truth” is, is the “correspondence theory of truth.” This theory entails that a “truth” is a proposition that accurately represents - or corresponds to - an objective obect of “reality” (note that denials of reality are self-contradictory and thus meaningless) or real (actual), objective states of affairs, situations, or circumstances. Note that the mention of an “object of reality” does not exclude the possibility of abstract or “immaterial” objects (entities not extended in space). According to that being what truth is, the working definition of knowledge must not violate any truths.

On to why the working definition of knowledge must be logical, reference is made to the above explanation of deviations from the laws of logic as ultimately amounting to meaninglessness. That is what is meant by the statement that this phantom “working definition of knowledge” must be logical.

The reason it was noted that the definition of knowledge that works must “answer the question of whether or not human beings are able to have absolute certainty about the truth or falsity of at least some propositions” is that in the absence of said question having been answered, the whole task of establishing a definition of knowledge is moot, for it is by logical dictate that the notion of “knowledge” would be equivalent to that of any other mental state. No, the notion detotes the precise aforementioned inquiry: one into the bounds of human cognitive grasps toward absolute certainty. This is by axiomatic, tautological definition of the task at hand.

The definition of knowledge as “justified true belief” fails for two reasons. The first is that Edmund Gettier showed that it fails to meet the triune criterion mentioned at the outset (http://www.ditext.com/gettier/gettier.html).

Secondly, the concept of a “justified” belief presupposes the presence of a justifer, but a justifer requires a justifier, ad infinitum. Therefore, justifiers cannot be related empirically to the sense perceptions of man, but rather there must be an immaterial, infallible justifier. This leads to the only working definition of knowledge:

Information within a consciousness with a corresponding infallible conviction that said information is objectively true.

By information is meant true propositions (recall the correspondence theory of truth). This information resides metaphysically “within” a consciousness: it is a property of it. Also a property of said consciousness or cognitive faculties is the infallible (unable to be mistaken) conviction (assurance) that the true propositions are indeed objectively true (that is that they are true according to the correspondence theory of truth). This working definition of knowledge denotes absolute certainty about the truth of propositions that need not necessarily reference material objects - they indeed could be about immaterial entities. But from whence comes an infallible absolute knowledge causing mechanism? Indeed, nature is finite, as per the mathematical impossibility of the existence of an infinite set of actual events in the material world. Thus, the infinite, infallible, absolute knowledge causing mechanism must be located in an immaterial realm. An infinitely powerful mechanism that is immaterial. This is God. What is God, you ask? Everything that the Bible says and implies God is, God is. Everything that the Bible says and implies that God is not, God is not. Now start reading, and take into account metaphorical language that is detectable per the contextual usage of it (i.e. “I sheltered Israel under my wings” or something to that effect - clearly figurative when context is taken into account. i.e. “It’s raining cats and dogs.”) Not only will that assist majorly in gleaning God’s attributes - and universal love is not one (thus goes the “problem of evil”) - but alleged “biblical contradictions” are reconciled when exegesis is done, and that in contradistinction to the utterly erroneous, fallacious undertaking known as “proof texting.” That skeptics are masters of - ripping a verse out of it’s context and pairing it up with a very “similar” one (similarly taken out of context by the skeptic), so as to make something of a case for a discrepency. So how do I know this God exists? The only working definition of knowledge dicates that God must exist. This can be put in syllogism form: Premise 1) if knowledge is possible then God exists. Premise 2) knowledge is possible. Conclusion: Therefore, God exists. How do I know God is the God written about in the Bible? God causes me to know that. God causes me to have an infallible conviction within my consciousness that corresponds to the propositional information in my consciousness that says “God as written about in the Bible is real.” You ask, “How do you know that?” The answer is in the form of a question: Why do I have to know “how” the mechanics of God’s absolute knowledge causing mechanism work in order for God to have already used said mechanism on me? The answer is that I do not need to know that in order to have already been caused by God to know that God exists.

For any concievable statement made, the question “How do you know?” can be raised as a legitimate means of undermining the epistemic status of that stated proposition only if “how” is used interchangably with the inquiry: “WHAT (notice, not “how”) is your infinitely justified justifier?” But such a question only undermines those epistemological positions that limit the locus of knowledge to the finite realm. The theist has an infinite point of reference, and so has the answer to why theistic foundationalism is the only epistemological position that has by definition that which meets the demands of the infinite regress problem. The skeptic inquires as to “how” the theist “knows” that the infinitely powerful infinite-regress-problem-fixing absolute knowledge causing mechanism is part and parcel of God’s ontological and metaphysical faculties. Once again, the question is posed as to why the theist need know the mechanics of “how” said mechanism work in order to be currently enjoying the product of it (the "what, " rather than the “how” - which is why I dubb the skeptical assumption behind their skeptical question as “the what and the how fallacy.”). It is already established axiomatically that the world view lacking reference to the infinite is impoverished with regard to a justification of the chain of justifiers. Let’s have a competition of assertions as to what one “knows” and we’ll see who runs out of energy first…

“…for that which may be KNOWN of God…”

“…for when they KNEW God…”

Yours,
category

Indeed, the idea that God exists has either been caused by God or it has not. This God, who either has caused that idea or not, either exists or he does not. If you believe that he does, this is a matter of belief, not of knowledge.

I KNOW that God exists. If you plan to ask “how,” re-read the article.

category

Well, at least you claim you know, and perhaps you believe you know. But believing is not knowing.

How do know that it is even a possibility that my knowledge is not knowledge.

“A” is happening. Therefore, it cannot be the case that it is even possible for A to currently not be happening - since it is happening.

My knowledge that God exists is occuring and established by the impossibility of the contrary (did you even read and understand my article?). Your assertion is that the contrary is possible. Do you have an argument for that? My argument has yet to be addressed by you with argumentation.

category

I don’t even know you exist, for that matter. So, as you might not exist at all, “your knowledge” might not exist either.

Yes, I did read and understand your article. It still hinges on faith.

No, my argument is that knowledge may be impossible. Therefore, God need not exist.

There is a ghost in the closet, and it cannot be the case that it is even possible for a ghost to not be in the closet - since there is a ghost in the closet.

A is A because I say it is. #-o

How do you know that you don’t know that I exist? How do you know that I might not exist? How do you know that my knowledge might not exist?

How do you know that you read and understood my article? How do you know it hinges on faith?

How do you know that that is what your argument is? How do you know that knowledge may be impossible?

category

How do you know there is a ghost in the closet?

How do you know that you say it is?

category

I don’t know I don’t know, so I might not know, but I’m not sure.

I don’t know you mightn’t, so you mightn’t, but I 'm not sure.

I don’t know it mightn’t, so it mightn’t, but I’m not sure.

I remember reading your article very carefully. Of course, my “memory” may just be a hallucination. So might everything.

It appears to me that I understood your article.

I don’t know it, but it appears that way to me.

I don’t, but it appears that way to me.

I don’t know if it may be impossible, so it might be impossible, but I’m not sure.

The only working definition of knowledge dicates that many gods must exist. This can be put in syllogism form: Premise 1) if knowledge is possible then many gods exist. Premise 2) knowledge is possible. Conclusion: Therefore, many gods exist. How do I know many gods are the many gods written about in the Illiad? Many gods cause me to know that. Many gods cause me to have an infallible conviction within my consciousness that corresponds to the propositional information in my consciousness that says “the many gods as written about in the Illiad are real.”

LOL! =D> Well said!

Your argument as I understand it is as follows:
There is truth, which is absolute certainty, because otherwise there would be no absolute certainty.
But truth is infinite (no reason given) therefore there must be God.

Please correct me if I’m wrong.

As you still have not replied, I will write the rest of our correspondence myself.

I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know, so I might not know, but I’m not sure.

I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know, so I might not know, but I’m not sure.

I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know, so I might not know, but I’m not sure.

Because I experience it that way.

Because I experience it that way.

Because I experience it that way.

I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know, so I might not know, but I’m not sure.

This correspondence is closed.

Actually, many gods would not be able to exist, for the ability to end this chain for a ‘need of justifiers’ must end at a singular point.

One problem I see in your argument is that you seem to be confusing a justification with a cause. You are saying that God causes your knowledge of Him but you’re also refering to that as the justification that upholds your knowledge. It may very well be that there is an omnipotent infallible God that causes your knowledge of Him, and this God may have no need for anything to account for His existence and power, but as far as how you know this knowledge is indeed valid (or what your justification is, as you would say), you leave a lot to be desired. Even if this God avoids the problem of infinite regress, it is an infinite regress of causation that He avoids. What your justifications for your knowledge are does not avoid it. I can always ask “what is your justification?” to any answer you might give to that question.

that would be a confusion of the principle of sufficient reason of becoming(cause-effect) with the principle of sufficient reason of knowing (ground of knowledge)

it’s time silly religious fantatics like ade to retire this antedated, anachronistic puff of an argument

It’s time for people to stop thinking, “Because I can’t see it with my eyes it doesn’t exist,” as well.

Also, some of the “ancient” arguments come from minds that spent their entire lives studying. Most of us rot in our contemporary surroundings and consider ourselves geniuses.

The fact that every scientific discovery is used as a platform to denounce the existence of a higher consciousness demonstrates that scientists are anything but objective. For they only answer the question referring to particular phenomena, “What is this for?” to their own liking. “Ethics are used as a mode of self-propagation” they argue. And the one who asks, “Why?” is met with the answer, “That’s simply how things are.”

What if one does not consider this answer to be sufficient? Most people stop asking questions when their appetites have been satisfied. Thus, a hedonist or generally “immoral” person is likely to take the initial statement, “Ethics are merely an arbitrary behavioral code that was once thought to be attributed to God,” as a sufficient answer for what he WANTS: a world where he is free from moral obligation. Do you think that scientists are able to separate themselves from this desire? You might answer “yes,” and say that they are more interested in the truth, but then I would reply, “Why is man interested in that which is true? Where does that longing come from?”

Inductive science is not the only way to prove something. If there is a car-shaped hole in my house, I might assume that a car drove through my house. I can’t be absolutely sure if this if the car did not leave behind any physical evidence. Similarly, I exist “IN TIME”, I experience time. I cannot verify if time is merely a fabrication of my mind or if it is objective. I assume it is objective and limited, as I am that way. And this line of thinking leads to the necessity of the “beginning of time” and the “Prime Mover” or God. The only way to negate God is to posit that the universe has existed for an infinite period of time (by saying that it simply goes on forever or that it’s continually expanding and contracting and replaying itself over and over), and the latter position requires just as much faith as the former. Heck, it requires more faith because it forces us to admit that our experience of time is somehow an illusion. And since all observations are made in “illusory time” then we can be certain of nothing.

I’m not even a religious fanatic. I just believe in the Prime Mover, and I call it “God,” because we need words to talk about things.

Look at the ferocity with which you defended your position. Are you at all interested in truth?

I doubt this is a true statement, let alone a fair one.

I don’t think this is a fair statement either. If it’s the theory of evolution your refering to, again, like category, you’re confusing causes with justification. Scientists may refer to evolution as the cause for our ethics - saying that we behave ethically because that is the best way for our species to ensure our survival - but this is not our reason for behaving ethically (i.e. our justification). Most of us justify our ethical behavior because we feel it is only right to do so. Take sex, for example. The cause of an animal’s engaging in sex is that it has been bestowed by evolution with a sexual drive such that it can propogate its genes, but as far as the animal’s reasons for engaging in sex, it just does it because it feels good.

Again, not fair. Little might you realize that hedonism is a brand of moral theory. It is the belief that what is right is what brings pleasure. Far from thinking that he/she is escaping moral obligation, the hedonist feels he/she is fulfilling it. If that sounds absurd to you, it is only because you harbor a different opinion about what constitutes moral behavior.

It’s funny that you use this example as evidence against inductive science since what you’re engaged in when you make the inference about the car is exactly induction. Science does this all the time. In fact, it was David Hume that proved that science can never be deductive.

Now this just doesn’t follow. First, time having a beginning is not necessary - it may seem absurd to you that it might be eternal - but it certainly isn’t necessary. Nonetheless, I think your assertion that it has a beginning is, in fact, in line with what current science speculates. Science remains silent, however, when it comes to the question of what came “before” (although we have to be careful with this word in this context). If you want to posit a “prime mover”, then first thing to come to grips with is Its timelessness - that is, that It cannot exist “in” time or have any kind of temporal extension (otherwise, we wind up with exactly the same problem it means to solve).

Sure, as long as you understand that a name gives you no power in ushering in additional arguments. You certainly can’t confuse this prime mover you have dubbed “God” with the God of the Bible or any other religion. Calling it “God” does not prove that the world was created in 6 days, or that Moses parted the sea, or Christ rose from the dead on the third day, or anything else. Otherwise, you can call anything “God” and prove any religion.

This has been posted at IIDB as well, with the challenge for a debate.

I accepted, over 4 weeks ago.This is barely even a logiccal argument.And its technically a flawed logic.

No, you cannot say that because you feel God, he must exist.

At the most you can say the feelign of god exists.AS A FEELING, not as knowledge. :imp: