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Thread: Underlying Presuppositions

  1. #11
    tWebber Leonhard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seer View Post
    Yes, the presupposition that the God of Scripture exists and gives the best explanation for why all your assumptions work and are possible.

    https://www.monergism.com/topics/apo...al-apologetics
    https://www.monergism.com/topics/apo...ental-argument
    Actually the argument being made by Presuppositional Apologetics is much stronger than it being merely a 'best explanation'. In order for this sort of transcendental argumentation to work out, only the theistic worldview can make the world intelligible. The believer, starting from the viewpoint of theism, challenges the unbeliever to make sense of the world. To account for facts and his way of thinking. This is best done with specific arguments that show that the unbeliever, if consistent, would have to deny that he can know anything, not even with any probability.

    You could for instance show carpedm9587 the argument from Evolution against Naturalism from Plantinga, as an example, and challenge him on intelligibility of the world given his presuppositions. That would be an example of this kind of argumentation.

    Presuppositional apologetics in the style of Cornelius Van Till, tend to go further and argue that only the Christian worldview can make the world intelligible. And some pressuppotionalists go even further and argue that only the "Westminster Confession of Faith" (as Gordon Clark held it) can make the world intelligible. And in fact further attacks any other sort of apologetical method as heretical or sinful. Going that far I think is over the top.

    I believe God's existence can be demonstrated with certainty. However I don't think Christ's resurrection, or the mystery of salvation can be demonstrated in any similar fashion. Arguments can be made to their reasonableness in the tradition of the Thomists, but you cannot have deductive certainty in Christianity. You can only engage with it, and come to Faith which is received as a free gift.

  2. Amen Adrift amen'd this post.
  3. #12
    Theologyweb's Official Grandfather Jedidiah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carpedm9587 View Post
    Wow. THAT explains a great deal. If you start with this as a presupposition, rather than arriving at it as a conclusion, then it is essentially immune to examination and discussion with someone like me is essentially impossible. I wish I had known that earlier. We could have saved a lot of time. No WONDER you kept thinking I was asking you to examine things from the perspective of my worldview.
    The fact that you arrive at your faith as a result of evaluation does not preclude adding it to the list of presuppositions. I did not come to faith in Christ until I was in my early thirties so it could not have been a presupposition prior to that time. My trust in the rest of your list of presuppositions did not come full blown when I was born, I had to learn them as well as my faith. The fact that you fail to see this, and your response make me question your ability to reason.
    Micah 6:8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

  4. #13
    Theologyweb's Official Grandfather Jedidiah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    My presupposition is that I am right and everyone else is wrong.
    True as long as you agree with me.
    Micah 6:8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

  5. Amen Leonhard, Cerebrum123 amen'd this post.
  6. #14
    tWebber Leonhard's Avatar
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    That and Cornelius Van Till and Greg Bahnsen, and the heirs of that kind of apologetics, hold various beliefs about human nature consistent with their Calvinistic views that I reject. For instance they argue it is completely impossible for an unbeliever to rationally accept their arguments, due to the "total depravity" of the unregenerate persons soul. That I think would be the biggest departure for me with their philosophy, but there is a core to the transcendental style of argumentation they use that one can extract.

  7. Amen Adrift amen'd this post.
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    tWebber carpedm9587's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seer View Post
    Carp, you do realize that presuppositions are accepted and not proven.
    Yes - they are. They are foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by seer View Post
    And I'm not sure why we couldn't discuss things. For instance your claim that laws of logic and mathematics are immutable, universal, and eternal. You can not prove that, it is accepted at face value. And to me, a rational, logical Creator who is immutable, universal, and eternal best explains these truths.
    Seer, for me, the idea of god is a conclusion I reach looking at the available evidence. So provide me with the evidence, and I will look at it and come to a conclusion. That evidence has to fit within the framework of my assumptions.

    For you, god IS one of those assumptions. Ergo, your belief in this being is not based on evidence - it is an unproven foundation on which the rest of what you believe rests (if "assumption" means to you what it does to me). Given that I require evidence for my beliefs about god, and you do not, there is no basis for discussion/debate. You will always come back to "but this is a given assumption of my worldview - you can't question it." For me, the existence of such a being is a conclusion, not an assumption, so I can (and do) question it. That means I may move from atheism to theism or the reverse as the evidence leads me. As far as I can tell, you are locked into theism and cannot consider other possibilities.

    Or am I missing something?
    The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy...returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

    -Martin Luther King

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    tWebber carpedm9587's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shunyadragon View Post
    Thank you for your clarification. We are on the same page, but with some differences. I am uncomfortable dealing with absolutes as you described them. Some Laws of Logic and identity are relatively certain, and parallel the nature of our physical reality, but do not represent absolutes. I could potentially envision a universe in which ALL may not be true.
    So, just to clarify, you can conceive of a universe in which a thing can be true and not true at the same time, in the same place, in the same way? Or that a thing can be other than itself? Or that 1 is unequal to 1?
    The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy...returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

    -Martin Luther King

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    tWebber carpedm9587's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparko View Post
    My presupposition is that I am right and everyone else is wrong.
    So many possible responses... so little time.
    The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy...returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

    -Martin Luther King

  11. #18
    tWebber carpedm9587's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jedidiah View Post
    The fact that you arrive at your faith as a result of evaluation does not preclude adding it to the list of presuppositions. I did not come to faith in Christ until I was in my early thirties so it could not have been a presupposition prior to that time. My trust in the rest of your list of presuppositions did not come full blown when I was born, I had to learn them as well as my faith. The fact that you fail to see this, and your response make me question your ability to reason.
    My OP was intended, if it was not clear, to focus on the bedrock assumptions of our worldviews; the ones that we do not derive from reasoning on even more base assumptions. Yes, we recognize these at different points in our lives, but I am not looking for when we recognized them so much as "do they depend on other assumptions?" For seer, "the Christian god is" is apparently one of these bedrock assumptions, based on his post. I'll leave him to clarify. For me, the existence of any god is a conclusion to a reasoning process (presumably based on experiences), not a foundational assumption. If Seer actually sees it this way, then there is no questioning the assumption; it is not rooted in other foundational assumptions, it IS a foundational assumption.

    As for your question about my ability to reason......I'll leave that to you to sort out.
    The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy...returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

    -Martin Luther King

  12. #19
    tWebber seer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Actually the argument being made by Presuppositional Apologetics is much stronger than it being merely a 'best explanation'. In order for this sort of transcendental argumentation to work out, only the theistic worldview can make the world intelligible. The believer, starting from the viewpoint of theism, challenges the unbeliever to make sense of the world. To account for facts and his way of thinking. This is best done with specific arguments that show that the unbeliever, if consistent, would have to deny that he can know anything, not even with any probability.
    I think my links touched on those points.
    Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

  13. #20
    tWebber seer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carpedm9587 View Post
    Seer, for me, the idea of god is a conclusion I reach looking at the available evidence. So provide me with the evidence, and I will look at it and come to a conclusion. That evidence has to fit within the framework of my assumptions.
    What do you mean Carp? Where is your evidence that the laws of logic are universal, immutable and eternal? Your particular experience - you do know that you can not argue from the particular to the universal? And in essence you are working backwards - from your experience of applying logic to the laws of logic being universal.

    For you, god IS one of those assumptions. Ergo, your belief in this being is not based on evidence - it is an unproven foundation on which the rest of what you believe rests (if "assumption" means to you what it does to me). Given that I require evidence for my beliefs about god, and you do not, there is no basis for discussion/debate. You will always come back to "but this is a given assumption of my worldview - you can't question it." For me, the existence of such a being is a conclusion, not an assumption, so I can (and do) question it. That means I may move from atheism to theism or the reverse as the evidence leads me. As far as I can tell, you are locked into theism and cannot consider other possibilities.
    Give me evidence that what goes on in your mind corresponds to reality... And I'm not sure what I'm locked into since I was agnostic for the first 37 years of my life.
    Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

  14. Amen Jedidiah, Mountain Man amen'd this post.

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