But behavior is an abstract idea, so we are still left with the materialism or not question.
This is total nonsense. Please tell me in detail what a non-Christian can’t experience that a Christian can experience. Sound like a lot of Christian BS.
Mathematics is a system of axiomatic premises and logical processes that we find useful. Why we find it useful is an interesting question. I don’t see how invoking the immaterial solves it.
It’s not so abstract. Our whole existence is a matter of behavior (actions).
But providence is an abstract idea, so we are left with the materialism or not question (quoting from @DaleCutler, a few posts above).
A post was split to a new topic: Christian Materialism
…although not any more than behavior, once you’ve seen it in action.
Sets of circumstances as probable as getting all heads on 10,000 coin flips, and infused with personal meaning. You’ve see some of the documentation, but are just in denial that they are anything more than mere coincidence. But how can you not.
Behaviors are not abstract, but the idea of behavior is. Does a piece of metal care that it exhibits ductile or malleable behavior?
If you flip a coin 10,000 times, whatever results you get is exactly as probable as getting them all to land heads.
Think about that,
In the real world, if you get 10,000 heads, you recognize that something else is going on. Think about that, yourself.
The question really is, why does it exist? Is there a material reason?
Because humans invented it. Why are there marshmallows? Is there a material reason?
I think that is called question begging.
Humans did not invent mathematics, to my way of thinking. We merely discover it. The relationships don’t need us for their existence.
So, is mathematics material?
That still doesn’t work.
We didn’t invent the process for creating marshmallows. We discovered it. That process would still have been capable of producing marshmallows, even if no one had ever actually discovered and used it.
That still begs the question. Marshmallows are material.
Let me retract that. The idea of the process is immaterial and the material process would still work even if a crow had discovered it. (Oh, I’m thinking of roasting marshmallows. )
Yes, it does work, so you are really agreeing with me. (Perish the thought. )
It’s not entirely unlike Michelangelo’s sculptures. They were all in the marble before he started. I believe it was he that said he was just removing the material that didn’t belong there, or words to that effect. Some of us are just more skilled at discovering.
I am more interested in the behavior of biological organism, the behavior of chemical reactions, the behavior of vibrating strings, etc.
But why is the concept of material behavior not immaterial?
(I prefer the vibration of baroque strings, and oddly enough, bluegrass strings, too. )
Call it as you see it. I don’t consider myself a materialist. It is immaterial to me whether behavior is taken to be material or immaterial.