Posted: Thu Apr 14, 2016 7:31 am
by Michael
randylkemp wrote:Why are you asking this question?

For the benefit of those reading along, any of whom may be facing the same challenges I have, and may have been disturbed by the issues raised (and insufficiently addressed) here on the philosophy forum (when my discussion with Jason went public.)
randylkemp wrote:What do you hope to learn?

Nothing.

By the grace of God I've already worked these things out.
randylkemp wrote:What is it you hope to achieve?

To make sure that nothing I said, or that Jason has said (or that you or anyone else says, on a topic heading I'm responsible for) prevents any creature from being "heartily greatful" to his or her Creator.
randylkemp wrote:And how will you know, when you find the "right" answer or a "satisfying" answer? And how many learned scholars, folks on this board, etc., need to agree with an answer, before you determine it's "right" or "satisfying"?

I'm quite satisfied that Jason has been arguing pure semantics all along, and that striped of the semantics, he has no argument.

And it is (or should be) perfectly obvious to any rational human being that states of existence can be bettter or worse than none existence.

That's why it was obvious to pilgrim that no one euthanizes a horse
in order to make himself/herself feel better.

And it was obvious to Geoffrey that no rational being would knowingly choose Dante's inferno over non-existence.
I agree with you, and so does all mankind.

Suppose people were given a stark choice, and they knew that one of the following two things would happen without any possibility of doubt:

1. You can immediately drop dead and simply cease to exist.

or

2. You can immediately drop dead and find yourself in Dante's Inferno and never get out.

Virtually every single person on earth would choose option #1. Everybody knows it's better to not be than to be in Dante's Inferno. Only someone not faced with the reality of this choice could possibly argue otherwise.

I would hasten to add here that even if Jason tries to point out that you'd have to exist before you could make such a choice, that's really irrelevant.

All that observation proves is that a non-existent "possible person" is unable to recognize the intrinsic value in anything life has to offer.

It doesn't mean there aren't things that have real, objective, intrinsic value (totally apart from an actual, living creature's ability to recognize such value.)

It doesn't mean, in Jason's words, that "all value is a matter of personal judgment."

That the life, and love, and happiness, and joy that existence has to offer only have value because of some arbitrary personal judgment on our parts.

It doesn't mean that, or that a hellish existence in Dante's inferno would only be bad if that were our opinion (and would really be no worse than non-existence.)

That's nonsense based on double talk, and that's why Proff. Greaves (of Oxford) could say
The prevailing opinion that the Incoherence Argument is sound is an artefact of naivete about the extent to which semantics must mirror surface grammar

But whether published authors, licensed counsellors, proffesional philosophers, ordained clergy, or ordinary folk and family members--we all have resposibilities to one another.

And those responsibilities cannot be escaped.

I can't avoid my responsibilities to my father here in CCU, or to you and Jason, and Geoffrey, and pilgrim, and others on this forum (many of whom may have read these threads without ever commenting on them.)

And you can't avoid your responsibilities to me, and them.

That's why saint James said

"Be not many teachers, my brethren, knowing that we shall receive greater judgment." (James 3:1.)

Jason became a teacher when his first fiction and non-fiction books were published, when he started posting here, and when he recommended one of his books to me in a time of grief.

You became a teacher when you jumped in this discussion.

And I became a teacher when I started posting here.

Whether you believe in UR or not, we're judged by the things we say and do, and we all have responsibilities that cannot be avoided.

I believe there are states of existence that are better and worse than non-existence, and I want to live up to my responsibilities here as well as humanely possible (to walk in all the good works that God has before ordained that I should walk in, and to join those who have loved me in a place of bliss when my life here on earth is over.)

Do I sound mentally ill to you counsellor?

Pax Et Bonum (Peace and Salvation) to all.