Objective Direct and Indirect Evidence, and Subjective Inferences

Don’t think so. As far as I know you can’t empirically verify quantum particles. If so I don’t see how that would work as a division.

Not offhand. But a simple way to go about it would be:
Objective is anything that is independent of what someone thinks or feels.
Subjective is anything that is dependent on what someone thinks or feels.

Photons are a quantum particle, and your eye does a pretty good job of verifying their existence. There are plenty of light detectors used in science.

Would you say that empirical measurement is an example of independent verification?

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Well I had in mind elementary particles. But would that be considered empirically verified? You don’t actually see it, just it’s effects.

Seems like it would be, yes.

10 posts were split to a new topic: Is a Signal on a PMT Direct or Indirect Measurement?

Because you are confusing science with epistemology, and swallowing whole the objective-sibjective distinction of positivism.

Try reading the article and seeing what you learn.

I’ve read the article. It seems to me that I’ve made it pretty clear that I’m not a positivist, but you don’t seem to think that’s the case. Again, I’m not saying that science is the only way to epistemic discovery. So I’m not confusing science with epistemology as far as I can tell. Science is one way of “knowing”, but it’s not the only way.

I don’t know how else to say it so that you will realize that I’m not promoting positivism. Or maybe there’s something your getting at which I’m totally unaware of. If that’s the case you’ll need to elaborate more on what it is because so far it’s not been expressed in a way that I am able to grasp it.

I know you are not a positivist. The objective subjective distinction is a hold over from positivism. So why do you care about it?

How so?

A proper basic belief. Objective or subjective?

If you mean something like do minds exist, then it would be objective in that it exists independent of whether or not someone thinks or feels it is so.

But the belief that minds exist, exists only in the mind of the person contemplating it, regardless of whether that belief is true or false.

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True. Nonetheless there’s no denying that minds are an objective feature of human experience independent of what someone thinks. In fact someone would have to think they don’t have a mind in order to deny that there is at least one mind that exists, which would seem like a logical contradiction to me. At the least it would seem to be incoherent.

I think Joshua was referring to the problem of other minds, not one’s own mind.

But what would you say to someone who only believes that their mind is the only one that exists?

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Would apply both ways. If someone acknowledges his own mind, then it follows logically that he would have to acknowledge other minds, unless he’s a solipsist which I address below.

I’d say you’re crazy. :slight_smile: Or, I’d say, if you die we’re all in trouble. LOL! But seriously I’d ask him to give me a good reason why I should believe what he’s saying is true. Same for the idealist.

He would simply say that all of his beliefs are consistent with his observations, and even if he cannot prove his position is right, neither can you prove your position (that other minds exist) is right without begging the question.

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Fine with me. If he wants to believe that he’s more than welcome. Ain’t going to get me to believe in such nonsense though. :slight_smile:

Oh, and I think it’s important to point out that just because it’s possible doesn’t mean it’s reasonable. There’s really no good reason that I know of to hold to a position that goes against everything our experience is telling us is real. And the rarity of those who hold to it I think speaks for itself.

Actually no. We have direct experience of our own minds. We do not have comparable experience of other minds. We have no evidence to disprove the theory that some or all others are philosophical zombies.

How did you type that post then?

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Ya right. And we have no evidence to disprove that everything including all of our memories was created 5 minutes ago. So let’s just believe that it’s all an illusion. If someone wants to go down that route, by all means.

But as I already pointed out in my previous post, we have no good reason that I’m aware of to doubt what our experience tells us about the past, or about the existence of other minds, so why should we believe something which is possible but based on our experience is totally unreasonable? I think I’ll stick with what’s reasonable according to my experience and let those who wish go down the unreasonable path of illusion.

But think about it, if I have an experience of my own mind, and I’m confronted with humans who I perceive are real just like me and who behave as I do, what’s the most obvious inference? To me it’s just being reasonable to infer the existence of other minds, and being unreasonable to deny their existence.