Discussion/debate/argument

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Mantrik
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Mantrik » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:52 am

Grigoris wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:38 am
Fa Dao wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:31 pm
ok..so, for example..what would a refutation of "god created the universe" as opposed to a counterargument look like? Not trying to bust your balls just want to understand this whole thing better...
"God does not exist and thus cannot create the universe."

The onus of responsibility is then on the person making the positive claim, to prove the existence of God. If they can pull that off then they have to show how God created the universe. Up until they pull that off all I have to do is sit and listen (or go for a beer, in this particular instance). If they manage to come up with something logical and intelligent, then I might proceed to prove them wrong or counter their argument with, I dunno, a theory of physics? An explanation of Dependent Origination?
Or you could ask a supplementary:
'Was there ever a Beginning or a defined Universe which needs explaining? '

(It is a bit bigger than the usual, 'so who created God' response.)

Not sure how you'd describe that response in terms of the pyramid, though.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Grigoris » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:55 am

Either way the original statement needs to be defined before logical debate/discussion can begin.

Scientifically speaking the person making the hypothesis needs to support it with evidence.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by anjali » Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:09 pm

Fa Dao wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:31 pm
ok..so, for example..what would a refutation of "god created the universe" as opposed to a counterargument look like? Not trying to bust your balls just want to understand this whole thing better...
Short version:

If X equals the claim, "god created the universe."

Argument X: I claim X because of logical reasoning and evidence X1, X2, X3.
Counterargument Y: I claim X can't be the case, because of reasoning and evidence Y1, Y2, Y3.

A counterargument doesn't directly refute an argument; it merely counters an argument with different evidence.
A refutation attacks an argument directly by undermining the argument's reasoning and/or its supporting evidence.

From this perspective, a refutation is a stronger from of disagreement than a counterargument, as it directly attacks the foundation of a given argument, rather than simply offer a plausible (and perhaps even convincing) counter argument.

If one wishes to engage in actual debate, first one should look for claims and arguments supporting those claims, then decide how best to undermine them, without resorting to name-calling, etc. Finding claims here on DW should be no problem, people make claims here all the time. In fact, finding a claim here is like finding a rock on a gravel road. ;)
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Mantrik » Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:44 pm

anjali wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:09 pm
Fa Dao wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:31 pm
ok..so, for example..what would a refutation of "god created the universe" as opposed to a counterargument look like? Not trying to bust your balls just want to understand this whole thing better...
Short version:

If X equals the claim, "god created the universe."

Argument X: I claim X because of logical reasoning and evidence X1, X2, X3.
Counterargument Y: I claim X can't be the case, because of reasoning and evidence Y1, Y2, Y3.

A counterargument doesn't directly refute an argument; it merely counters an argument with different evidence.
A refutation attacks an argument directly by undermining the argument's reasoning and/or its supporting evidence.

From this perspective, a refutation is a stronger from of disagreement than a counterargument, as it directly attacks the foundation of a given argument, rather than simply offer a plausible (and perhaps even convincing) counter argument.

If one wishes to engage in actual debate, first one should look for claims and arguments supporting those claims, then decide how best to undermine them, without resorting to name-calling, etc. Finding claims here on DW should be no problem, people make claims here all the time. In fact, finding a claim here is like finding a rock on a gravel road. ;)
Better yet to undermine or question the assumptions on which they predicate their argument.

Show me there was a Beginning, and prove a defined Universe and then you can talk to me about God having been the creator.

I always think it really funny that very few conversations on this topic do this.
Last edited by Mantrik on Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by DharmaN00b » Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:16 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:44 pm
Better yet to undermine or question the assumptions on which they predicate their argument.
... :stirthepot: or perhaps aware people to the idea that it's normal that statements nearly always contain assumptions, which can be annoying, (if not followed by what's the use? To what end?)

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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by anjali » Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:33 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:44 pm
Better yet to undermine or question the assumptions on which they predicate their argument.
Assumptions are merely claims that are accepted as true without proof. No doubt, they can be debated and possibly refuted like any other claims.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Mantrik » Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:43 pm

anjali wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:33 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:44 pm
Better yet to undermine or question the assumptions on which they predicate their argument.
Assumptions are merely claims that are accepted as true without proof. No doubt, they can be debated and refuted like any other claims.
In this case, both parties to the argument must accept the assumptions or there is no debate at all.
That's true with many debates, of course, and the inherent danger is that the assumptions are way more important than the topic being debated.

How do we rob the bank at Pigeon Point in Tobago?
A great debate.........but there is no bank there and nobody thought to ask.

That doesn't just refute the central point............it destroys it. So maybe the pyramid needs a golden tip to be added to the top.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by DharmaN00b » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:07 pm

anjali wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:33 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:44 pm
Better yet to undermine or question the assumptions on which they predicate their argument.
Assumptions are merely claims that are accepted as true without proof. No doubt, they can be debated and possibly refuted like any other claims.
So an assumption only becomes truth because 1 or more other people accept such? Surely, that prerequisite doesn't fit very well if at all!? I would argue that an assumption is short sighted and only relies on chance encounter, which is probably also an assumption. (mandelbrot sets anyone?)

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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Mantrik » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:24 pm

DharmaN00b wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:07 pm
anjali wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:33 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:44 pm
Better yet to undermine or question the assumptions on which they predicate their argument.
Assumptions are merely claims that are accepted as true without proof. No doubt, they can be debated and possibly refuted like any other claims.
So an assumption only becomes truth because 1 or more other people accept such? Surely, that prerequisite doesn't fit very well if at all!? I would argue that an assumption is short sighted and only relies on chance encounter, which is probably also an assumption. (mandelbrot sets anyone?)
As a prerequisite to debating the colour of swans, the parties who are debating implicitly agree that swans exist.
So, yes, in order to debate things in that way we have to have a shared assumption that the subject of the topic actually exists.
I've no idea what 'chance encounter' has to do with it.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Grigoris » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:41 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:24 pm
So, yes, in order to debate things in that way we have to have a shared assumption that the subject of the topic actually exists.
Not necessarily. cf the God created the universe example.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by DharmaN00b » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:43 pm

A chance encounter would be something you stumble across, like newton and the apple, (a bit like solar systems flirting around a black hole.)

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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Mantrik » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:58 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:41 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:24 pm
So, yes, in order to debate things in that way we have to have a shared assumption that the subject of the topic actually exists.
Not necessarily. cf the God created the universe example.
I may be answering your point incorrectly as I'm not sure if the 'contra fides' means you don't think the God example fits.

They both have to agree that there was a Beginning to an agreed 'Universe' in the first place. So, they need a shared assumption, or one can simply disagree with the assumption and there can be no debate on the topic predicated on the assumption. No Beginning, no God debate.

I don't know why, but it seem damn hard to get that point across, even with examples, so I'll go watch TV instead. lol :)
Last edited by Mantrik on Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:01 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Mantrik » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:58 pm

DharmaN00b wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:43 pm
A chance encounter would be something you stumble across, like newton and the apple, (a bit like solar systems flirting around a black hole.)
I know what it is, but saw no relevance at all.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Fa Dao » Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:49 pm

anjali wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:09 pm
Fa Dao wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:31 pm
ok..so, for example..what would a refutation of "god created the universe" as opposed to a counterargument look like? Not trying to bust your balls just want to understand this whole thing better...
Short version:

If X equals the claim, "god created the universe."

Argument X: I claim X because of logical reasoning and evidence X1, X2, X3.
Counterargument Y: I claim X can't be the case, because of reasoning and evidence Y1, Y2, Y3.

A counterargument doesn't directly refute an argument; it merely counters an argument with different evidence.
A refutation attacks an argument directly by undermining the argument's reasoning and/or its supporting evidence.

From this perspective, a refutation is a stronger from of disagreement than a counterargument, as it directly attacks the foundation of a given argument, rather than simply offer a plausible (and perhaps even convincing) counter argument.

If one wishes to engage in actual debate, first one should look for claims and arguments supporting those claims, then decide how best to undermine them, without resorting to name-calling, etc. Finding claims here on DW should be no problem, people make claims here all the time. In fact, finding a claim here is like finding a rock on a gravel road. ;)
thanks for the clarity...
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Ogyen » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:14 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:52 am
Grigoris wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:38 am
Fa Dao wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:31 pm
ok..so, for example..what would a refutation of "god created the universe" as opposed to a counterargument look like? Not trying to bust your balls just want to understand this whole thing better...
"God does not exist and thus cannot create the universe."

The onus of responsibility is then on the person making the positive claim, to prove the existence of God. If they can pull that off then they have to show how God created the universe. Up until they pull that off all I have to do is sit and listen (or go for a beer, in this particular instance). If they manage to come up with something logical and intelligent, then I might proceed to prove them wrong or counter their argument with, I dunno, a theory of physics? An explanation of Dependent Origination?
Or you could ask a supplementary:
'Was there ever a Beginning or a defined Universe which needs explaining? '

(It is a bit bigger than the usual, 'so who created God' response.)

Not sure how you'd describe that response in terms of the pyramid, though.
Question: posing this question isn't counter-argumenting via a question?

Or is a counter-argument always a statement?
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Jeff H » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:21 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:58 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:41 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:24 pm
So, yes, in order to debate things in that way we have to have a shared assumption that the subject of the topic actually exists.
Not necessarily. cf the God created the universe example.
I may be answering your point incorrectly as I'm not sure if the 'contra fides' means you don't think the God example fits.
I'm not familiar with "contra fides", but I'm pretty sure cf. means "compare".
They both have to agree that there was a Beginning to an agreed 'Universe' in the first place. So, they need a shared assumption, or one can simply disagree with the assumption and there can be no debate on the topic predicated on the assumption. No Beginning, no God debate.
I think you're right. You've referred to a Gelug background, and by that system I was taught that "Prasangika" refers to "consequentialism" as a method of argumentation. It means that the first step in debate with someone who doesn't share common assumptions is to demonstrate the internal contradictions of their position. Someone who holds beginnings and creation to be incontrovertible and axiomatic will not feel a need to prove them. For them they're just the obvious foundation of how things are.

Shantideva does it by asking (and I paraphrase roughly because this is just an example; the argument is not my point -- see 9:124-125), if God creates according to his will, then how do you explain the processes of cause and effect? And if causes and conditions bring about predictable results, as we see they do, then in what way does God impose his will?
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Mantrik » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:54 pm

Ogyen wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:14 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:52 am
Grigoris wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:38 am
"God does not exist and thus cannot create the universe."

The onus of responsibility is then on the person making the positive claim, to prove the existence of God. If they can pull that off then they have to show how God created the universe. Up until they pull that off all I have to do is sit and listen (or go for a beer, in this particular instance). If they manage to come up with something logical and intelligent, then I might proceed to prove them wrong or counter their argument with, I dunno, a theory of physics? An explanation of Dependent Origination?
Or you could ask a supplementary:
'Was there ever a Beginning or a defined Universe which needs explaining? '

(It is a bit bigger than the usual, 'so who created God' response.)

Not sure how you'd describe that response in terms of the pyramid, though.
Question: posing this question isn't counter-argumenting via a question?

Or is a counter-argument always a statement?
Not really a counterargument. It is asking for evidence that there is a valid argument to counter.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Mantrik » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:56 pm

:crying: in
Jeff H wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:21 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:58 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:41 pm
Not necessarily. cf the God created the universe example.
I may be answering your point incorrectly as I'm not sure if the 'contra fides' means you don't think the God example fits.
I'm not familiar with "contra fides", but I'm pretty sure cf. means "compare".
They both have to agree that there was a Beginning to an agreed 'Universe' in the first place. So, they need a shared assumption, or one can simply disagree with the assumption and there can be no debate on the topic predicated on the assumption. No Beginning, no God debate.
I think you're right. You've referred to a Gelug background, and by that system I was taught that "Prasangika" refers to "consequentialism" as a method of argumentation. It means that the first step in debate with someone who doesn't share common assumptions is to demonstrate the internal contradictions of their position. Someone who holds beginnings and creation to be incontrovertible and axiomatic will not feel a need to prove them. For them they're just the obvious foundation of how things are.

Shantideva does it by asking (and I paraphrase roughly because this is just an example; the argument is not my point -- see 9:124-125), if God creates according to his will, then how do you explain the processes of cause and effect? And if causes and conditions bring about predictable results, as we see they do, then in what way does God impose his will?
Yes. A good example :)
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by Wayfarer » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:59 pm

Jeff H - IN relations to that particular argument, about how ‘God creates according to his will’ etc - it occurs to me that the recently deceased Stephen Hawking firmly held to the view that the Universe is self-creating. He arrived at this, mainly due to his disdain for religion, to which he was famously hostile. However his view, and the common scientific view generally, that the Universe is self-creating, is no more compatible with Buddhism than is the theistic view that it developed from and opposes.
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Re: Discussion/debate/argument

Post by DharmaN00b » Sun Mar 25, 2018 11:29 pm

Not telling.

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