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Switch to Forum Live View Realism v. Nominalism (& Alternatives) in Christianity
2 years ago  ::  May 05, 2012 - 11:50AM #51
amcolph
Posts: 17,531

May 5, 2012 -- 11:30AM, stardustpilgrim wrote:



 


For me this raises the question: What does God know and when does he know it?



God doesn't need universals--he can comprehend all of the instantiations at once without them.


 


With our limited intellectual capacity we need universals to comprehend the universe of objects.  That's why our mind constructs them and why they don't need to exist anywhere else.

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2 years ago  ::  May 05, 2012 - 12:51PM #52
JimRigas
Posts: 2,950

May 5, 2012 -- 11:50AM, amcolph wrote:


 


God doesn't need universals--he can comprehend all of the instantiations at once without them.


 




 


So God does not (or cannot) generalize?

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2 years ago  ::  May 05, 2012 - 1:18PM #53
amcolph
Posts: 17,531

May 5, 2012 -- 12:51PM, JimRigas wrote:


May 5, 2012 -- 11:50AM, amcolph wrote:


 


God doesn't need universals--he can comprehend all of the instantiations at once without them.


 




 


So God does not (or cannot) generalize?



I don't know.  I only suggested that He might not need to.


If He does, do His generalizations need to exist objectively, as entities apart from Himself?


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2 years ago  ::  May 07, 2012 - 6:01AM #54
Miguel_de_servet
Posts: 17,050

The lady thought it best to abandon thread "Jesus the Divine Creator" and start a new thread ...

May 4, 2012 -- 11:30AM, amcolph wrote:

May 4, 2012 -- 10:08AM, Adelphe wrote:

As a self-proclaimed Nominalist and Christian, I'm simply flabbergasted that you don't see the "pertinence to the topic."


Don't know what else to say.  Maybe back off on the discussion and let it continue until you manage to do so.


What? I've stumped you?


You can't explain why the union of an instantiation of god (God) and an instantiation of flesh (the flesh of Jesus) requires that the universals (flesh and god) be as objectively real as the instantiations?


It's a simple question, maybe even a dumb question, but that it should flabbergast you surprises me.


... I wonder —as three days have gone by in the meantime, since amcolph's latest post addressed to her— if the lady has been truly stumped for good ...


... OIOW if this is a KO Surprised ... or just a KD ... Undecided


... let's wait and see ... Cool


MdS


P.S. It would be interesting to see how the lady's "moderate realism" (once she has explained in what it would consist ...) would help her out of her ... er ... predicament ... Wink

Revelation is above, not against Reason

“The everlasting God is a refuge, and underneath you are his eternal arms ...” (Deut 33:27)
“Do you have an arm like God, and can you thunder with a voice like his?” (Job 40:9)
“By the Lord’s word [dabar] the heavens were made; and by the breath [ruwach] of his mouth all their host.” (Psalm 33:6)
“Who would have believed what we just heard? When was the arm of the Lord revealed through him?” (Isaiah 53:1)
“Lord, who has believed our message, and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?” (John 12:38)
“For not the hearers of the law are righteous before God, but the doers of the law will be declared righteous.” (Romans 2:13)

“Owe no one anything, except to love one another, for the one who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.”(Romans 13:8)
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2 years ago  ::  May 07, 2012 - 6:44PM #55
Adelphe
Posts: 28,707

May 4, 2012 -- 10:14AM, nieciedo wrote:


I believe that the Father, the Son, and the Spirit are One God and not three gods.  That said, I plead "mystery of faith" as to how that works.



Forever and ever, Amen.  :-)



The universal/particular language is as good as any and better than many to explain it, though.



It is and the Early Church Fathers also used the concepts.


  One question I have never settled for myself though is:


How is the relationship of the Persons of the Trinity to the universal of "divinity" different from the relationship of any other particular to its universal?



It's not!


Are all red things or all chairs part of the same unity as the Persons are the one Godhead? Or is infinity/singularity a specific property of the universal of divinity so that instead of three gods we have three particulars that are still One?



Amen, brother.


Too bad you weren't also at the Councils, as they could have used your help.


'Course you might have gotten yourself killed by the Arians for that logical reasoning and thinking, but...


Wink


Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not retract anything, for to go against conscience would be neither right nor safe.  Here I stand.  I can do no other.  God help me.  Amen.
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2 years ago  ::  May 07, 2012 - 6:56PM #56
Adelphe
Posts: 28,707

May 4, 2012 -- 10:32AM, stardustpilgrim wrote:


Well......I generally consider it useless to quote an authority, because we can always find an authority for any position. If you don't come to understand something, it remains external anyway, not a part of who you are....


But defining terms is different.........


sdp




The only way it could be an "authority" is if it accurately captured the positions (and also the history.)


Anyway, I went to all the trouble of finding it on my hard drive on my old laptop, sending it to myself via email, pulling it down off my account, and starting to type until...big ol' copyright which requires ANY use to request permission.


Here's the best I could do on-line:


"Realism


In the early history of philosophy, particularly in medieval thought, the term realism was used, in opposition to nominalism, for the doctrine that universals have a real, objective existence. In modern philosophy, however, it is used for the view that material objects exist externally to us and independently of our sense experience. Realism is thus opposed to idealism, which holds that no such material objects or external realities exist apart from our knowledge or consciousness of them, the whole universe thus being dependent on the mind or in some sense mental. It also clashes with phenomenalism, which, while avoiding much idealist metaphysics, would deny that material objects exist except as groups or sequences of sensa, actual and possible."


www.bookrags.com/research/realism-eoph/



"Nominalism, Modern


In its main contemporary sense, nominalism is the thesis that abstract entities do not exist. Equivalently, it is the thesis that everything that does exist is a concrete object. Since there is no generally accepted account of the abstract-concrete distinction, and since it remains genuinely unclear how certain (putative) entities are to be classified, the content of modern nominalism is to some degree unsettled. Certain consequences of the view are, however, tolerably clear. For example, it is widely agreed that the objects of pure mathematics—numbers, sets, functions, abstract geometrical spaces, and so on—are to be classified as abstract. It is also widely agreed that certain objects of metaphysics and semantics—propositions, meanings, properties and relations, and so on—must be abstract if they exist at all. Modern nominalists thus commit themselves to rejecting these paradigmatic abstract entities and hence to rejecting any scientific, mathematical, or philosophical theory according to which such things exist. In this sense nominalism is standardly opposed to platonism (or, less commonly, antinominalism)."


www.bookrags.com/research/nominalism-mod...


Both articles go on for a few more (short) pages, if you're interested.




Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not retract anything, for to go against conscience would be neither right nor safe.  Here I stand.  I can do no other.  God help me.  Amen.
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2 years ago  ::  May 07, 2012 - 7:04PM #57
Adelphe
Posts: 28,707

May 4, 2012 -- 11:30AM, amcolph wrote:


May 4, 2012 -- 10:08AM, Adelphe wrote:


 


As a self-proclaimed Nominalist and Christian, I'm simply flabbergasted that you don't see the "pertinence to the topic."


Don't know what else to say.  Maybe back off on the discussion and let it continue until you manage to do so.







What? I've stumped you?


You can't explain why the union of an instantiation of god (God) and an instantiation of flesh (the flesh of Jesus) requires that the universals (flesh and god) be as objectively real as the instantiations?


It's a simple question, maybe even a dumb question, but that it should flabbergast you surprises me.




Missed your earlier post is all...


First, "the flesh" is a Bibical term for humanity.  "God" is divinity or deity and it is exactly those two natures which were united in one person.  What do you think are the necessary and sufficient conditions for something to be humanity and for something to be deity?  Would "uncreated" be a real property of deity?




Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not retract anything, for to go against conscience would be neither right nor safe.  Here I stand.  I can do no other.  God help me.  Amen.
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2 years ago  ::  May 07, 2012 - 7:18PM #58
Adelphe
Posts: 28,707

May 4, 2012 -- 11:53AM, amcolph wrote:


 


May 4, 2012 -- 9:54AM, stardustpilgrim wrote:


Well, I looked back and this:


"Metaphysical realism, in the widest sense, the view that (a) there are real objects (usually the view is concerned with spatiotemporal objects), (b) they exist independently of our experience or our knowledge of them, and (c) they have properties and enter into relations independently of the concepts with which we understand them or the language with which we describe them. Anti-realism is any view that rejects one or more  of these three theses, though if (a) is rejected the rejection of (b) and (c) follows trivially. (pgs 562, 563)"



 




As I understand Nominalism, it accepts the three theses given, but rejects the notion (held by Realists) that the 'concepts by which we understand them' are as objectively real as the objects themselves.




See below...

May 4, 2012 -- 12:05PM, Keyfer wrote:


I hope that something true, useful or interesting will be in the following thoughts about the incarnation of God’s Word.  



If we think of a plan leading to an action which leads to a result, we can see that the plan comes first and without it, there can be no result. By thinking in this order, it could be argued that the plan is more real than the resulting object ( a chair, for instance). 



Since we live in the physical world, we are used to thinking that physical things, a chair for instance, are more real than the plan which created them. Perhaps we are thinking from the bottom up when we should be thinking from the top down...



iow, revelation is a (the) key part of epistemology for Christians.

Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not retract anything, for to go against conscience would be neither right nor safe.  Here I stand.  I can do no other.  God help me.  Amen.
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2 years ago  ::  May 07, 2012 - 7:23PM #59
Adelphe
Posts: 28,707

May 5, 2012 -- 8:02AM, stardustpilgrim wrote:

...But science has come up with a new operation that will fix your type of blindness and allow you to see.



Which is?


Science can't do a thing about that--only God.

Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not retract anything, for to go against conscience would be neither right nor safe.  Here I stand.  I can do no other.  God help me.  Amen.
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2 years ago  ::  May 07, 2012 - 7:32PM #60
Adelphe
Posts: 28,707

May 5, 2012 -- 9:50AM, amcolph wrote:


We seem to be struggling with an inconsistent set of definitions.  Whatever the Cambridge Dictionary has to say, the existence of objective reality is not being called into question in this discussion.


The classical position of Nominalism is that generalities exist only in minds.  For example, there are many objectively existing chairs as the Nominalist and the Realist agree, but the Nominalist takes the position that the abstract concept chair has no objective existence outside of the minds of those who think about it.



Would YHWH exist just as He does if you weren't thinking about Him?



en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Problem_of_univers...


I suppose that from a Kantian perspective the question would be, are abstract concepts part of the noumena or the phenomena?




Kant was comfortable with abstraction and was, despite his epistemological (and ontologically wobbly) idealism, a realist (albeit, claimed we couldn't get at the noumena--hence his "phenomenalism."  But don't forget his a "priories" and his "analytic" and "synthetic" propositions and distinctions...  And, of course, somehow he knows all of this...)


iow, Kant was seriously f*cked up.


Tongue Out

Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not retract anything, for to go against conscience would be neither right nor safe.  Here I stand.  I can do no other.  God help me.  Amen.
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