Peter wrote:
"Don't give me this crap that you start with "existence exists" as your fundamental truth."

But I do.

Peter wrote:
"You derrived that "fundamental truth" from your ideas about what you saw in your life."

This is not so. The concept 'existence' is not derived from prior ideas. It is irreducible. The concept 'existence' was implicit in those ideas all along. Objectivism simply makes the implicit explicit.

Peter wrote:
"You assumed what you saw was valid, never questioned it, and formed your axioms."

How do you know? Were you there? Or, are you projecting now? You are speaking where you have no knowledge, Peter. It shows how desperate you are.

Peter wrote:
"It happens that this one is correct--but my view is more consistent."

What, your view about deities and universes being created ex nihilo by an act of consciousness? How can you achieve consistency in philosophy by accepting the primacy of consciousness? Subjectivism (the view that existence finds its source in a form of consciousness) is no key to consistency. Indeed, if you consistently practice a philosophy built on the primacy of consciousness, it will lead you to the same end as Jesus: willingly embracing a premature death. If that is what you want, and if that is what you call a virtue in your view, by all means, Peter, have at it.

Peter wrote:
"Regardless, you cannot prove that physical existence exists."

Indeed, I nowhere attempt to. Existence is not in the realm of things which can be proved. Again, it is axiomatic. However, since you do not seem willing to let go of your own stolen concepts, you seem to think that existence is subject to proofs. If you are consistent in anything, Peter, you are indeed consistent in repeating your errors.

Peter wrote:
"Show me an error in the logic!"

You've accepted an error before you've even engaged in argument, Peter. That is the nature of stolen concepts. The fallacy of the stolen concept is a conceptual error. You will probably not be able to identify it so long as you continue to remain unquestionably committed to arbitrary beliefs.

Peter wrote:
"It does not matter if I cannot identify the object or the means by which this is so--it is necessarily so because of logic alone."

Then you reify the notion of logic, and thus assert logic without context or reference to reality. This was the error of the rationalists (cf. Descartes, etc.). This is a consequence of confusing the what with the how as we saw above.

Peter wrote:
"My points are valid regardless.  Deal with them."

Peter, you sound quite frustrated here. Your points are valid "regardless"? You mean, they're valid regardless of the stolen concepts on which they're built? I do not accept that, and I certainly have no obligation to "deal with them."

Peter rejects reason. This is a given. He has rejected his reason in favor of his god-belief, which he must accept on faith. Yet when he encounters non-believers, he attempts to use arguments in order to "prove" his position. Thus, he exposes that in the end, he really doesn't trust in his deity at all, since he needs some path of reasoning to get him there. It makes no sense to him, yet he struggles to get others to see something he himself cannot see from his own vantage. For Peter, this is mental torment, a holy terror of his own making arising as he tries to hide from himself the fact that his leg has been pulled. He dropped no line of crumbs on his trek into the labyrinth, and he cannot find any golden thread leading to the exit. He is thus trapped by his own mental disfigurement. And all he needs to do is recognize and correct his own stolen concepts, and he can eventually be free of this terrible burden which he insists on living with, and which he expects others to accept.

I asked:
"Can you name some objects which are 'non-physical'?"

Peter wrote:
"Well, the easy one would be God."

Can you name a non-physical object which actually exists?

Peter wrote:
"Another non-physical object: what about the idea of 'self'."  

What qualifies this idea as an "object"?

Also, if both "god" and the idea 'self' are "non-physical objects," then it seems that you are suggesting that you are aware of both by the same means. This suggests that "god" is nothing but an idea as such, or, a figment of your imagination perhaps? How would you distinguish one "non-physical object" such as an idea, which is dependent upon your consciousness, from another, such as the notion 'god', which you might think exists independent of your imagination?

Peter wrote:
"I am concious of myself in a way seperate from my physical body.  Cut off my arm, and I still exist as myself.  My physical body is not all of me, only a part."

So, can your self exist apart from all of your body? Science shows that organisms such as human beings can survive without an arm or without legs, etc., thus affirming that these are not vital to human existence in the same way that our heads and our torsos are. Do you think you would still exist as yourself if someone removes your head from your torso, for example? Do you think that there is no physical part of your body which is absolutely essential to your existence? Since you claim to be a Christian, you most probably assert the primitive idea that the "soul" leaves the body upon death. Thus, in life, you are personally nothing more than a combination of a corpse and a ghost awaiting separation. That's kind of gross, don't you think?

I wrote:
"But, I suppose this kind of intellectual fallout is what happens when one is convinced that all reality is an illusion."

Peter wrote:
"I have never said that all reality is an illusion.  I have only said that you cannot prove otherwise."

Why would I have to prove otherwise? I do not accept any onus of proving the negative, which is essentially what you're asking me to do here. If you think there's reason to think that reality is an illusion, then simply provide some evidence to this end. Otherwise, I really don't see the issue here. One can continually throw up arbitrary obstacles in the path of reason and then claim that "You cannot prove otherwise!" thus suggesting that the arbitrary gains automatic credibility just by virtue of being suggested. I think this habit is one of your chief hang-ups, Peter. Perhaps you've spent too many a night at the movies?

I wrote:
"The only thing Peter has given us to justify this is that he thinks what he perceives is not reality, but an illusion, and that he cannot prove otherwise. Thus, granting this nightmarish view of his own mind credibility, he thus argues that the illusory must be the norm (since he's renounced the one tool he needs to dispel such absurdities, which is reason), and thus concludes that existence is not 'necessarily physical'."

Peter wrote:
"Mock all you want, my position stands true."

Your position stands on stolen concepts and arbitrary ideas, as I've pointed out numerous times now. You're simply in denial on this fact. But denying it does not make it go away (as we've seen you suggest on a number of occasions now).

I wrote"
"...(continuing from before)...thus concludes that existence is not "necessarily physical." Necessary for what?"

Peter wrote:
"This shows you do not understand the definition of philosophical necessity.  Necessity means that the conclusion must be so because of the premises stated.  The premise is that existence exists even if physicality does not exist"

Peter, in all honesty, this premise makes no sense to me. It has drops all reference to reality. Why should one accept it? I know why you've accepted it, but as I've shown, you have to accept stolen concepts to argue for this premise. It's a red herring issue anyway. It cannot be integrated into a rational view of reality. Besides, all these concerns are satisfied by the axioms.

Peter wrote:
"If you deny all physical existence,"

Why would I deny "physical existence"? I just want to know why. Do you want people to deny the fact that matter exists so that you can make room for your "immaterial supernatural realm"? As I've stated, Peter, if you want to believe this stuff, you need not go to all the trouble of presenting flimsy, fallacy-soaked arguments on discussion lists to do this. You simply go along your merry way and believe it if you like. Demonstrate genuine trust in your deity. Constructing arguments in order to support your supposed trust in alleged deities only undermines any claim to trust. Meanwhile, I think the rest of us have better things to do.

<<<
Peter wrote:
"Can you prove that all existence is physical, CV?"

I wrote:
"It is not my position that "all existence is physical." This dichotomy is all yours, not mine. I simply acknowledge that existence exists."

Peter wrote:
"And yet you are the one arguing against me for a physical existence, CV, saying that there is no such thing as non-physical existence."

I have not claimed that there is no such thing as non-physical existence. I've maintained all along that existence exists. If something is physical, it exists, and is thereby implied; if something is non-physical, it exists, and is thereby implied. But I do not break the concept 'existence' in two against itself as you do in your "arguments". This is conceptually unwarranted and it can only lead to further false dichotomies and an outright rejection of reality. Additionally, I've simply asked you to define what you mean by "non-physical existence," since you keep trying to say that it exists. I think you've interpreted that my questions constitute a negation, but this is a hasty generalization on your part.

I wrote:
"Agreed. The primacy of consciousness is invalid. Existence holds metaphysical primacy over consciousness. This rules out all god-beliefs."

Peter wrote:
"No it doesn't."

Well, there we have it! A blatant affirmation of the primacy of consciousness metaphysics. This is grand!

Peter wrote:
"Prove that this rules out any god-belief."

Gee, should I have to? The Monkey was sharp enough to see this without having to have his hand held. Now, that's ironic!

Peter wrote:
"It does not follow that because existence exists, then God cannot exist--If God exists then BY DEFINITION existence must exist too.  Your conclusion does not follow.  In fact, it's totally illogical."

Not at all. You're obviously not integrating here. If existence exists, then there's no need for a god whatsoever. Why? Because existence exists. Existence cannot be "explained" by appealing to "something prior"; there is nothing "prior" to existence, for it would also have to exist, thus negating any explanatory value in positing this "priority." The proper place is to start with existence as such, as Objectivism teaches, not with a form of consciousness, as religion does, for this commits the fallacy of the stolen concept. If existence exists (and it does), then existence exists independent of consciousness. Consciousness is consciousness of existence, and existence does not conform to consciousness (try wishing something into existence, Peter, it won't work). Simply, existence holds metaphysical primacy, thus, the primacy of consciousness, and every expression thereof, is invalid. Game, set and match. You're done.

Peter had written:
"As a result, existence exists and is proven by consciousness."

I corrected him:
"I wouldn't say 'proven'."

Peter asked:
"Why?  Consciousness cannot exist apart from existence--therefore since consciousness is, then existence must be.  Ergo, existence is proven."

As you yourself state, consciousness cannot exist apart from existence. That's because existence holds metaphysical primacy over consciousness. To assert that one can "prove" the fact that existence exists, is to accept a stolen concept (and it also begs the question, too). I think I explained this, and you snipped it from your quote.

I asked:
"What is meant by the idea 'invalid data'?"

Peter asked:
"How many times do I have to tell you?"

Gee, how many times do I have to point out your reliance on stolen concepts?

CertainVerdict