Thursday, September 04, 2008

Is that a Book of Evidence or are you just glad to see me ?

Craig Duckett takes a swipe at the poor benighted Christians on one of his pages, with the (probably) unconsidered
If all the words in the world were suddenly removed, isn't reality that which remains?
To remove all the words means to remove all the people, so you are now on Unearth. Ask Jim Baggot (En passant, isn't it great how many Gedankenexperimenten start out on Unearth, and then proceed to talk about it ? And thanks Jim, good questions), he was there, on Unearth, which he thought was:
what the world would be like if there had been no accident of evolution leading to human beings capable of conscious thought self-awareness and complex social interaction.
So: No, reality is not what remains. That world is not real any more than it is beautiful. It is no more factual that it is farcical, and is actually no truer than if it were "literally true". You might be rather convinced about how real it is, you may indeed ascend to raptures every time you stub your toe, but with no words comes no evidence for reality.
This is one of the reasons why religious books have become so important to religious believers because without having words to point to they would have no other evidence of the supernatural, and in order for religion to hold sway you must buy into the notion of the supernatural.
Which sounds like it's going somewhere, until you remember that
This is also one of the reasons why scientific books have become so important to scientific thinkers because without having words to point to they would have no other evidence of the natural, and in order for science to hold sway you must buy into the notion of the natural.

Craig had already claimed that
the 'real world', the world outside of language and art [is] the world we live in each day,
so perhaps I shouldn't take him as seriously as he's going to have to take the therapy bills, but he put it up to me by asking me to choose between a "natural world based on evidence" or a "supernatural world based on words in a book" which put me in a bit of an ol' tizzy, because there's no difference - evidence is words in a book (unless there's lawyers involved in which case it's expensive words in a big book).


And if anyone would like to suggest that the world be confined to only my (or Craig's) senses, they should literally stop reading blogs without words

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