Re: Same Old Song and Dance: Anderson on Induction... again
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Another really good post.
I imagine presuppositionalists and hyper-sceptics alike would dispute the claim that touching hot stoves is painful, as an item of certain knowledge possible to learn from instances of touching them. Touching stoves isn’t enough to get a full understanding of the way the physiology of the human nervous system interprets intense heat as pain. Whether a full understanding of this will ever be within grasp is unknown. The presupper says God has this full understanding, and this somehow justifies the human claim, or maybe just for theists?
I’d say we don’t need a full understanding, only a partial one, and for that, one touch is enough. The factual details about the nervous system will explain why, and explain exceptions e.g. it may not hurt at all if my senses are numbed with drugs. (That would be an exception that proves the rule, when the rule is better understood.)
The days of intense Christian-atheist debates in blog comments are over, I reckon, because Christians have decided to concentrate their energies elsewhere. Islam is the real threat as an alternative basis for civilisation. Atheism isn’t a real demographic contender, apparently, because secular societies’ reproduction rates are so low.
I’ve been enjoying observing the intellectual battles at the historic Speakers Corner at Hyde Park. To any potential visitor to London I’d strongly recommend experiencing a Sunday afternoon at the corner! Right now, Muslims dominate the space. A few Christian groups try to hold ground too. The level of debate is all over the place. You can get a sense of what it’s like via YouTube videos.
Does anyone else here have anything like this institution in their locality? I believe there’s one in Singapore, established in imitation of London’s. It’d be interesting to see how Objectivism fares in this environment.
If it’s them or Islam, for my part, it’s not western chauvinism that makes me hope the Christians can win.