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    1. #76
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      The problem with defining knowledge as a justified, true belief (besides the Gettier thing), seems to me to be that we can never know that something is a true belief.

      Even our most fundamental 'knowledge' about this world is subject to review. We once considered "the world is flat" to be knowledge, but we now know that this statement doesn't even fulfill the most basic requirements you set forth - truthfulness.

      I would simply define knowledge as a belief which is justified beyond reasonable doubt - that's as good as you will ever get. You need to be willing to accept that human knowledge is not necessarily truthful.

      Having said that, I can now reiterate: you are using a strange definition of 'knowledge'. If we think, we obviously exist. This belief can be considered knowledge, because it is justified beyond reasonable doubt.

      As for Fundamentalism vs. Coherentism, though I've never heard of either before I will venture to say that the latter seems the most promising to me. All of our knowledge, according to the definition I have put forth, is dependent on our ability to doubt - this, in turn, depends on our expectations. Our expectations are an emergent property of all of our past experiences and current beliefs/knowledge - the whole system must support itself.

    2. #77
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      Even our most fundamental 'knowledge' about this world is subject to review. We once considered "the world is flat" to be knowledge, but we now know that this statement doesn't even fulfill the most basic requirements you set forth - truthfulness.

      I would simply define knowledge as a belief which is justified beyond reasonable doubt - that's as good as you will ever get. You need to be willing to accept that human knowledge is not necessarily truthful.
      That's very true - a lot of our knowledge is subject to revision and changes in scientific paradigm. I do think, however, that it is possible to obtain workable objective knowledge about the world - objective to the extent that it can be used for many applications. I don't accept, and I don't think that you do either (if I'm interpreting what you say correctly) that all knoweldge is relative in nature. Relativism is very defeatist, and an objection to it can be: if all knoweldge is relative, and we can never find objective truth, how do we explain human successes with complex knowledge? Things like medical knowledge, if not truthful, would not be able to save patient's lives... I wrote a mini-essay on the relativist/objectivist debate on my blog somewhere, I can post it into a thread if you're interested in reading it.

      Having said that, I can now reiterate: you are using a strange definition of 'knowledge'. If we think, we obviously exist. This belief can be considered knowledge, because it is justified beyond reasonable doubt.
      Well herein lies the rub. Against Descartes' 'unreliable reasoning' skeptical argument, there is not reasonable justification. The faculty that forms the basis for the justification, which is thinking or reasoning, is under doubt, and so cannot be used to form adequate justification for the belief.

      I also wrote an essay for my uni course on foundationalism and coherentism that I can post somewhere if you want to read more about it... I think that a combination of the two theories is probably the most satisfactory way of concieving knowledge.

    3. #78
      When the ink runs out... Kushna Mufeed's Avatar
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      Hell yeah, my brain is in a vat. I just like to call it "skull"
      I enjoy being blunt.

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      I am not sorry or empathetic whatsoever for saying that I believe the world would be much better off without people like you in it. Have a great fucking day.
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    4. #79
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      Quote Originally Posted by Roller View Post
      Relativism is very defeatist, and an objection to it can be: if all knoweldge is relative, and we can never find objective truth, how do we explain human successes with complex knowledge? Things like medical knowledge, if not truthful, would not be able to save patient's lives...
      I disagree, actually. I think that all human knowledge is necessarily not objective. How do I explain human successes? Models. We use simplified models of the world to make predictions, and there must be some element of truth to them which makes them work.

      Quote Originally Posted by Roller View Post
      Well herein lies the rub. Against Descartes' 'unreliable reasoning' skeptical argument, there is not reasonable justification. The faculty that forms the basis for the justification, which is thinking or reasoning, is under doubt, and so cannot be used to form adequate justification for the belief.
      I guess I can see this, but it seems like a glitch which reflects our imperfect definitions more than an actual argument for not knowing if we exist. Like I said earlier, doubting one's reasoning is foolish, as doing so requires reasoning. It's paradoxical.

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      I disagree, actually. I think that all human knowledge is necessarily not objective. How do I explain human successes? Models. We use simplified models of the world to make predictions, and there must be some element of truth to them which makes them work.
      Actually I agree with you there... I don't think that all human knowledge is objective. A large amount of it isn't. I do think that objective knowledge is possible, although science is the best way of achieving this; even then, a lot of knowledge is still not objective.

      So, I'll rephrase my argument to: a lot of knowledge is subjective and relative, but objective knoweldge is possible.

      What do you think?

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