Saturday, December 12, 2009

No Reason on Naturalism

In a purely naturalistic framework, to talk of rationality would be meaningless. On naturalism our cognitive faculties would be geared for survival, not rationality or truth. Therefore, we would have no reason to think any of our beliefs are true, even the belief in naturalism itself. All of what we perceive to be true would be nothing more than electrical impulses in our brains that would only be guiding us for survival. There would be no basis on which to think anything we perceive is true. This is epistemically incoherent and creates a state that is self-defeating for the naturalist.

However, the theist has good grounds to think that they can ascertain truth reliably. If there is a God who has fashioned our minds to be able to grasp truths, then we can be confident in our ability to do so.

More on this by clicking here.

16 comments:

Steven said...

This is not relevant to your post, but I'd like to ask: how is the married life going?

bossmanham said...

Steven,

Thanks for asking. It's going well. We're expecting now and my wife is about 13 weeks along. It's been a great time so far. How's college life?

Steven said...

It is going easy, thanks. You guys didn't waste any time huh

godlessons said...

The article you cite is actually rather interesting. It starts out with a quote from Darwin. While not exactly a quote mine as in the normal sense, when read in context it is obvious that Darwin is merely refusing to attribute certain truth to anything without evidence. It absolutely doesn't say that Darwin believes naturalism cannot account for intellect.

I find it rather humorous though that people will try to use the words of Darwin that were obviously words of skepticism, and apply them to attempt to validate the sort certainty fetishists of mythology ascribe to.

As for the rest, I have no idea what naturalism has for epistemology, but I know that anyone that says they are 100% certain of anything outside their own mind is fooling themselves. It matters little if a God exists or not.

bossmanham said...

Hey GL, thanks for stopping by.

It absolutely doesn't say that Darwin believes naturalism cannot account for intellect.

I think you're reading far too much into the article. They were not saying Darwin didn't think that naturalism could account for biological life, because he clearly did, but they were showing that he struggled with the issues it brings up epistemologically.

but I know that anyone that says they are 100% certain of anything outside their own mind is fooling themselves

Didn't I address that? You must make just as many assumptions to hold to an unending skepticism as you do to actually accept some truths. Maybe you should look into Plantinga's ontological argument, which simplified states that if it's even possible for God to exist, He exists necessarily.

God bless :)

bossmanham said...

Steven,

No, haha, we didn't. Neither of us believe in contraception and we both wanted a kid, so we weren't trying to stop it. We'll probably try Natural Family Planning for a little bit after this.

Rhology said...

Neither of us believe in contraception

Really? Not even a barrier method? Why not? Have you ever written about that?
Just curious. I oppose all abortifacients, including all BC pills, but don't see a problem with a barrier.

bossmanham said...

Rho,

My reasoning is that if the possibility of children is removed, then the act of sex becomes nothing more than a profound form of play. Since children are always a blessing from God, obstructing that blessing but holding on to my own selfish pleasures doesn't seem to be glorifying to God.

I did write on it here but my writing skills have progressed since I posted it. Keep that in mind, lol.

Rhology said...

Thanks much, I'll read it.

then the act of sex becomes nothing more than a profound form of play.

I hear you but at the same time it is much more than that - it's the bonding of two into one, the consummation in the flesh of what has been done spiritually and in heart, in law, and in family. Not trying to argue, just pointing it out.

Grace and peace,
Rhology

Steven said...

I'm curious as to why sex could not be some thing that God made humans to do such that it is for their own enjoyment, and not necessarily for any other purpose. Why suppose that if you have sex, you gotta (at least try to) conceive? Why not suppose that you could have sex just to enjoy your wife, and without wanting to conceive at all?

bossmanham said...

Rho,

I wonder if the "two becoming one" is partially referring to having children?

Steven,

We do enjoy it and each other, that isn't a problem at all. However, if we did that and blocked the possibility of having children then sex loses meaning and just becomes a means to selfish pleasure, IMO. Children are always a blessing from God in scripture, and I don't think that blocking a blessing artificially is right.

Plus, all Christians taught that contraception was wrong, Protestant and otherwise, until the 1930's. It's a progressive tool to limit the population.

See Psalm 127

Rhology said...

Two becoming one refers to the marital action and act - man and woman becoming one flesh. "Be fruitful and multiply" is what you're looking for. And lookie here - we done multiplied! ;-)

I don't see how it's selfish pleasure if I'm focused on pleasing my wife during lovemaking.

And not ALL Christians - NT Christians didn't hear about it.

Peace,
Rhology

Steven said...

(i) I don't see how it is a selfish pleasure any more than eating oranges or watching the newest Werner Herzog (for me, at least) would be a selfish pleasure.

(ii) So what if protestants and Catholics taught against it? I don't believe a lot of things the earlier Christians taught.

Steven said...

And sure, children are a blessing, and families with lots of them are blessed. It's supposed to follow from this, though, that contraception is wrong or improper?

bossmanham said...

"Be fruitful and multiply" is what you're looking for. And lookie here - we done multiplied! ;-)

I don't think that necessarily means that the two becoming one doesn't refer to making babies, however. Certainly the man and woman being intimate makes them close and is proper in the sight of the Lord, but the other aspect of copulation, babies, is being obstructed.

I think it does follow that this is an inherently selfish act. Eating an orange and enjoying it doesn't go against the natural law. Neither does watching a movie (although there could be debate about what kind of movies we should watch). It isn't interfering with the determined purpose of a certain act. Contraception is wrong because it’s deliberately altering and obstructing the design of God.

Thankfully, Adam and Eve couldn't prevent conception, or else there would be no people left.

Finally, all of the reasoning behind contraception is selfish. It's about me wanting to have more time. It's about me wanting more money for myself. It's about me not wanting to be inconvenienced. I don't think children are an inconvenience. The ancient Jew and Christian would be incensed at the idea.

It's supposed to follow [children being a blessing], though, that contraception is wrong or improper?

Well yes. If we are preventing a blessing from God, then that seems wrong.

Steven said...

I'm gonna blog on this in a while, maybe tonight or tomorrow or so.