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Truth and Knowledge

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David Sims

Truth and Knowledge

PostSat May 16, 2015 7:48 pm

There is a branch of philosophy called "epistemology." An epistemology is a rationale by which someone claims to have knowledge, or to know truth. Epistemology isn't what you believe to be true. It is, instead, how you justify your claims for knowing what the truth is.

Every group holding to a dogma has, as part of that dogma, the belief that they are infallibly and with utter certitude correct in holding to that dogma. The circularity of that reasoning, and hence the logical invalidity of it, however obvious it might be to others, is lost on them. A good example is the way in which Christians believe that they're going to Heaven, but nobody else is. Most of the time, this sort of attitude is pure presumption. However, there can be exceptions. Sometimes one group's point of view is right about something, while all of the other groups are wrong.

Christians say that the New Testament is God’s word on certain matters, such as what happens to people after they die, and the conditions for having good Afterlife circumstances rather than poor ones. But someone of a different religion will disagree, and I don’t see how aligning my thinking with the beliefs most common in my native land is a valid way of answering metaphysical questions.

Truth is not something that authority can create by decree.

Truth is not something that you can find by the method of voting on what the truth is.

There’s another, and a better, way to find truth. Use an empirical method, such as the scientific method. It might take a while to work, but when it does work, it works for everybody. Anyone with the intelligence and the material prerequisites can do the same research, carry out the same experiments, get the same results, and usually reach the same set of conclusions about what the truth is. You might need a microscope, a telescope, or a chemical laboratory. But you won’t need a priest.

Because, really, there is no "my truth" and "your truth" and "their truth." There is only the truth. And opinion is either in accordance with the truth, or else it's simply wrong. The only question worth arguing is: How do you know when a method for seeking the truth actually does succeed in finding it?

You know that a method for seeking truth works when it can, really can, cause a light to spring forth and banish darkness. Not an imaginary light, such as a delusional fanatic might pretend to see, but a real light that can show anyone with normally functioning eyes the way through an unfamiliar and otherwise dark place. You know that a method for seeking truth works when it can, really can, heal the sick. Or when it can reveal what would have gone unnoticed because of distance or smallness, or for some other reason. Or when it can enable people to communicate with each other across thousands, or even millions, of miles.

In summary, you know that a method for seeking truth works when it has a history of giving to people powers that they did not have before.

Valid methods for seeking truth do this because useful truths are a subset of all truths, and it is a subset in which people have a particular interest and to which they devote a considerable amount of their time. Any efficacious method for pursuing truth, used by human beings, will uncover a significant proportion of useful truths over time.

The only method for seeking truth that actually works, so far as is known, is empiricism augmented by logic. In other words: science.

Religious metaphysics cause factionalism because God doesn't really exist, except as an abstraction that different groups of people have defined in different ways. But you will notice that the nature of gravity or the nature of electricity has not caused any similar factionalism. That's because the principles behind those forces were discovered by empirical methods, which give the same knowledge to Europeans, to Arabs, to Chinese, or to anyone else who uses them.

Cosmotheist

Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostMon May 18, 2015 9:47 am

Truth and Knowledge?
How about Whole Truths and Whole
Knowledge both within and without?
See:
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=6

Best regards,
Cosmotheist

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Will Williams

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Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostMon May 18, 2015 10:09 am

David Sims wrote:...The only method for seeking truth that actually works, so far as is known, is empiricism augmented by logic. In other words: science.

Religious metaphysics cause factionalism because God doesn't really exist, except as an abstraction that different groups of people have defined in different ways. But you will notice that the nature of gravity or the nature of electricity has not caused any similar factionalism. That's because the principles behind those forces were discovered by empirical methods, which give the same knowledge to Europeans, to Arabs, to Chinese, or to anyone else who uses them.


Welcome to WB, David. This short article fits well into the Cosmotheistic approach to philosophy and religion.

Cosmotheist

Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostMon May 18, 2015 10:22 am

Will Williams wrote:
David Sims wrote:...The only method for seeking truth that actually works, so far as is known, is empiricism augmented by logic. In other words: science.

Religious metaphysics cause factionalism because God doesn't really exist, except as an abstraction that different groups of people have defined in different ways. But you will notice that the nature of gravity or the nature of electricity has not caused any similar factionalism. That's because the principles behind those forces were discovered by empirical methods, which give the same knowledge to Europeans, to Arabs, to Chinese, or to anyone else who uses them.


Welcome to WB, David. This short article fits well into the Cosmotheistic approach to philosophy and religion.


Indeed, it does fit well into the Cosmotheistic approach to both philosophy and religion except for this:

"because God doesn't really exist"....

A Personal God doesn't really exist but "God" for Cosmotheists is an IMPERSONAL FORCE or URGE or CONSCIOUSNESS
within the WHOLE of COSMOS that is metaphorically THE CREATOR and is the SPIRITUAL BASIS for the WHOLE of it all.
In other words, "God" is ALL REALITY and it is ALL EXISTENCE, ITSELF, as a UNIFIED WHOLE!

See:
viewtopic.php?f=25&t=556


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Cosmotheist

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Will Williams

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Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostMon May 18, 2015 11:55 am

Cosmotheist wrote:
Indeed, it does fit well into the Cosmotheistic approach to both philosophy and religion except for this:

"because God doesn't really exist"....


Let's not nitpick with David, Dr. Pierce's former editor, and a scientist himself. What he wrote fits; let's leave it at that. In context, he wrote: "Religious metaphysics cause factionalism because God doesn't really exist, except as an abstraction that different groups of people have defined in different ways."

I took that to cover the abstract "God" that so many people are conditioned by tradition to "believe" in, as the Abrahamic Yahweh/Jehovah/Allah. To open-minded, non superstitious cosmotheist thinkers that god doesn't really exist.

Michael Olanich

Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostMon May 18, 2015 3:18 pm

Excellent essay David.

"Religious metaphysics cause factionalism because God doesn't really exist, except as an abstraction that different groups of people have defined in different ways."

This is true and quite right. The factionalism caused by monotheistic/semitic religions is caused by each faction's specific beliefs in their version of an anthropomorphic deity (God). They explain the metaphysical through their Bible, Koran, or whatever, and in the process there is much quibbling on one or one thousand different interpretations laid out in these texts.

Cosmotheism explains the metaphysical through hard science, and does not place faith in a non-existent deity with human characteristics.

Cosmotheist

Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostMon May 18, 2015 3:28 pm

God – A Work In Progress
By Max Musson
http://www.westernspring.co.uk/god-a-work-in-progress/

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Most people fall into the trap of believing that there is either;

1. A fully formed, often anthropomorphised, conscious, sentient, all knowing, all powerful, all loving God, who has a particular interest in, and cares for us; or

2. There is no God.

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Dawkins is good at demolishing belief in the first of these possibilities and the mistake that most people make as a consequence is to believe that his arguments therefore prove that the second possibility is therefore correct.

Big Bang 4Science indicates that the universe came into existence with the ‘Big Bang’ approximately 13.5 billion years ago. No one knows what existed prior to the Big Bang and the Big Bang consisted of a sudden out-rushing of raw energy from a central point, filling the void of nothingness that existed beforehand.

Whatever existed in the void of nothingness before the Big Bang, and which occupied the central point, was the source of all of the energy from which our universe has formed.

Whatever existed prior to the Big Bang – the act of universal energy creation – no longer appears to exist. It appears that whatever it was became completely consumed in the act of universal energy creation.

That source of energy could be viewed as a ‘creator’ of sorts, because from the energy created during the Big Bang, all of the matter of the Universe has evolved, including us.

What we do not know at this stage, is what form the Creator took. We have no way of knowing whether the Creator was conscious, or sentient, or all knowing, or all powerful. Furthermore, there is no evidence to suggest that the Creator was all loving and certainly none to suggest that the Creator has or had any particular interest in, or care for us.

The universe, or the Cosmos as it should be more accurately described is an immense random generation device in which matter has formed from the energy that was created, and has evolved through many stages, gradually increasing in complexity and the level of consciousness achieved by the most highly evolved life forms.

In searching for the purpose of life and the purpose of the Cosmos, there are many as yet unknowns, but it is clear that the Cosmos is a mechanism that facilitates evolution – the evolution of inanimate matter, but also living matter, through ever increasing levels of complexity knowledge, power and consciousness.

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We humans, as far as we can tell, stand at the pinnacle of that evolutionary process, but there is no evidence to suggest that we are the ‘end product’, in fact the contrary. All of the evidence suggests that we are as Nietzsche describes, a ‘stepping stone’ from sub-man to super-man and beyond.

Cosmotheism asserts that providing we continue the process of evolution, mankind, or at least the currently most highly evolved elements of humanity, such as the White race, will evolve through ever higher and higher levels of consciousness, power and knowledge until our future generations achieve a state of total consciousness and omnipotence. This will be the culmination of the Creator’s work, the metamorphosis of the Creator from a pre-physical state, either with or without consciousness, but with an indefatigable ‘will to be’, through many stages to his/her eventual complete self-realisation as a conscious, sentient, all powerful, all knowing entity – Godhood.

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This belief is the fundamental tenet of Cosmotheism, which unlike any other religion, is completely consistent with science and nature, and does not rely on blind faith or superstitious mumbo-jumbo in order to attain credibility.
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NoLongerSilentUSA

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Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostTue May 19, 2015 12:41 pm

I like to define God as my source of life, whatever that source may be. My source of life doesn't need to have an external consciousness. God is the light of consciousness behind my eyes. I evolved to be spiritual and feel a spiritual connection and oneness with my people. Thank God for evolution!
The Holocaust Hoax is a complete fraud. There were no gas chambers and they used pictures of dead typhus victims to claim there was an extermination program.

Cosmotheist

Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostTue May 19, 2015 1:10 pm

NoLongerSilentUSA wrote:I like to define God as my source of life, whatever that source may be. My source of life doesn't need to have an external consciousness. God is the light of consciousness behind my eyes. I evolved to be spiritual and feel a spiritual connection and oneness with my people. Thank God for evolution!


Exactly, and that is a good definition, as the source of life, of which it most certainly is in fact.
When and if you ever discover and experience that that light is both within your own self, as it is
in the Cosmos as a unified Whole, then you will discover for your own self the Whole Cosmotheist
Truth of Reality!

Best regards,
Cosmotheist

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Jimmy Marr

Re: Truth and Knowledge

PostTue May 19, 2015 9:23 pm

This guy sims to know what he's talking abbott.
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