We only think causality

Isn't David Hume the greatest Charlatan in whole philosophy for assuming that we only think things are casual but we can not "see" that they are really causal in themselves ?

I Mean if a ball hits another ball we can clearly see that the first ball was casual for the second one to move...

If I put my hand on a hot oven and it burns I can clearly see that the oven is casual for my hand burning...

We are obviously able to know that the things in this world have a causal order... we don't just think that... we can proof it and see it clearly

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  1. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Generally, when you feel as though a philosopher is overcomplicating something, and that in your "simple" thinking the full truth is contained, you're wrong. Such is this case.

  2. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Hume's contention wasn't that the ball doesn't hit the other ball or that the oven doesn't burn you, but that since every effect is unique from the other we can't really say that one thing causes the other with any certainty. Two people throwing balls in a controlled experiment will result in the balls going somewhere different, so can you say that one thing caused it, can you generalize to say something moved the balls when their effects are not identical? This ultimately leads to the initial variables problem in physics where physicists posit that they could predict anything if they had all prior initial state info, but this of course is a problem because of quantum mechanics which has a principle that assumes you can't have both velocity or momentum of a particle with equal certainty, knowledge of one, leads to the uncertainty of the other.

  3. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Based STEM chad. Philosophy is cope for morons that can't pass a calculus class.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      no thats moronic. iteration is much more firm than causality. after x it seems that y tends to follow.

      STEMlet. In actual hard science basics its true that iteration trumps causality as well. you can never be absolute sure x causes y, simply that y follows x within a standard deviation of occurrences. the literal scientific method is based around this fact.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        This would have been true if science did not rely on predictive power, even in statistics, there are tests that distinguish btn correlation and causation

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          predictive power is simply correlation that holds so strongly true that its often practically (but not theoretically) indistinguishable from causality. if your chances are 1 google to 1, it frankly easier to say “untrue” instead if “moronicly unlikely”

  4. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Hume begs the question for most of his famous arguments. However, the reason he is still famous for them is because he doesn't beg the question in a trivial way. For his problem of induction/arguments on cause, the is/ought problem, and the argument against miracles he starts out ASSUMING that the scientific world view of his era is true. What he does is show how the problems he identifies are implicit in the premises of that view.

    Starting with Galileo, and reinforced by Descartes, there was an increasing move to turn the world into just extension in space. Only what could be quantified truly exists. Only things taking up space in motion are truly real. Color, tone, pitch, etc. are all "less real," in this view, "secondary properties," created by the mind, whereas extension in space is objectively real.

    This is an instinctively appealing position, which is why it is as old as philosophy. We only experience color or pitch with one sense. We experience extension in space and motion with almost all of our senses, making it seem intuitively "more real." We know our senses can receive, but if many senses say the same thing we are more confident in that judgement. Hence "little balls of stuff cause all things," is older than Plato, a solution to the apparent unity and multiplicity of being (the One and the Many).

    The great success of this view in terms of applying mathematics to science, and a backlash against Aristotle due to his ground breaking but ultimately partially flawed physics being enforced as dogma from on high led to a radical reorientation in what was thought to be "really real."

    Now if all that truly exists is extension in space then where is morality to be found? If you can't derive it from mathematical measurements of things in space it must be illusory.

    Likewise, Newton had it that gravity is a mysterious force that acts at a distance. We could observe what it is but not why it is. This led to a view where cause is the product of extrinsic eternal laws from outside things causing them to act the way they do. Given this view of cause, Hume's argument does follow.

    Of course, this view of cause is not longer popular in physics, but it's still how the laity conceive of things. There has been a huge problem in science education where the "balls of stuff working according to eternal laws view," is no longer popular with experts, indeed seems falsified, but then it is what most people are taught because it seems "intuitive." But a lot of our intuitions are just wrong lol. We don't correct this because rather than one replacement paradigm we have many, and so it is easier to teach the old version. And of course, the moral nihilism, denial of conciousness, etc. that this view entails is ignored because "that isn't the job of science to explain." So, the "anti-metaphysical" dogma of the 20th century keeps Hume alive.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      This view is also useful for people who have made scientism and existentialism their religion, since it does indeed make life seem absurd. This is the religion of most academics and so the presuppositions required by Hume have gained the same weight of dogma that Aristotle had back in the middle ages.

      Life has to be purposeless and valueless, evolution has to be 100% mindless, and telos cannot exist. The huge controversy over EES is that it might allow some role for mind in evolution and even telology, and this violates the dogma.

      Existentialism is a reaction to positivism and utilizes its broken definition of objectivity as a means of demonstrating that nothing can have any value "in itself." This has sort of shown itself to be a strawman, but the influence lives on. Consider who the best selling philosophers are: Nietzsche is probably the most read and Camus and Sartre are up there. People construct their whole world view off their premises.

      But clearly the universe DOES construct value and meaning because it exists in us. The Ancients and Medievals never operated under the illusion that value and meaning could be without a knower, this is a modern standard that lasted maybe 60 years before being BTFO from the inside.

      And clearly mind does sometimes control evolution. Consider domestication. This is a massive shift in a species based on choices made by minds. Is this "unnatural selection," somehow magical? No, it's something created by nature.

      But the modern view, starting with Descartes, separates mind from nature such that man is the sui generis creator of all value and meaning. And yet naturalism dictates that man does not create himself and that his ideas do not spring from the ether uncaused. So nature gives rise to everything in us.

      But dislodging the dominant view is very hard. It tells us that good doesn't exist. That we are free to create our own good and under no responsibility to do anything. Rather than the ancient and medieval vision of freedom as requiring self-control, ascetic discipline, reason — freedom from being ruled over by desire, instinct, passion, and circumstance in order to do what one truly things is best, you get a view where freedom is cheap, almost automatic. All you need to be free is to say "frick what everyone else thinks, I won't be subject to social control. Good and bad are something I create anyhow."

      Well, this is obviously much more appealing than being told we are slaves and that it will take excruciating practice to become more self-determining, unified, and self-governing.

      The ultimate move to defend this view is eliminitivism. Denying that man is concious, that he really does things like feel pain or see blue, in order to close the massive hole in this way of thinking.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      Your post is very interesting and correct, but concerning Hume’s problem of induction it doesn’t really apply. Hume points to the epistemological issue of the justification of induction, which, according to him, does not warrant it a priori, as was believed, and thus cannot be taken as necessary. Taking a priori reasoning as a demonstration of the necessity of a specific relation of ideas, which being denied leads to a contradiction, Hume points that the relation between observable events in experience does not implicate in the contradiction by denying this necessary the relation.
      If we say that A = B we cannot deny that B = A without contradicting the former premise. But to say that the fact that you hit a ball and the conclusion is that the ball does not move, does not contradict necessarily the former premise of hitting a ball. Even if this inference is what is observed, we can not appeal to that inductive reasoning to justify inductive reasoning itself as a priori and necessary (that is, not only justifying past observations but all the future ones).

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        You are correct, I was being hastey and conflated the arguments on cause being unobservable with the Problem of Induction.

        However, there does seem to be ways around this. Following Kirpke and Cartwright, most philosophers of science have turned to thinking of natural laws as merely descriptions of intrinsic relations between things. That is, thing do what they do because of what they are. Interactions aren't determined by anything external.

        Since that shift, we've also seen increasing push back against reductionism and smallism in the physical sciences. Today, it's more common to frame this as "the universe does what it does because of what it is."

        In such a view, causation increasingly starts to look similar to computation, and indeed the analogy to computers is extremely common in modern physics literature. Under such a view, past states of a system entail future states (or depending on the framework used for quantum foundations, they might entail a range of possible states). The hope with a "grand unified theory of everything," is that you might be able to describe what the universe is, and then show how events deductively follow from its properties. There are certainly problems with this view and difficulties for it. But it's been so successful because it seems to get a lot right.

        This doesn't solve the problem of how one gets around using induction to prove the validity of deduction. You can always have doubts as to whether you description of the universe is accurate due to under determination. However, IF your view is right, you now can deductively show why induction will give us valid inferences, because the world does what it does because of what it is, and this entails certain relations in how it evolves from state to state.

        Plus, if you pair the Problem of Induction with the Scandal of Deduction, you end up with the conclusion that neither can tell us anything. This is clearly wrong.

        Hume's preferencing of relations of ideas (analytical/a priori) has roots back in Plato and his preferencing of immutable knowledge. But Plato has a keener insight, in that he is aware that discursive, relativising propositional knowledge cannot grasp the absolute, which includes reality and appearance.

        From the direction of Plato, and then from the direction of Quine and developmental biology, I think we have plenty of grounds to simply dismiss the early modern conception of the a priori as simply a phantasm, an inaccurate idea of how knowledge can work, what knowledge is. So, the problem lies in attempting to set up a standard of certainty that is hallow and unattainable, incoherent even.

        Plato does not fall into this same trap. He knows reason is ecstatic, that we can always question anything. It is open ended in the way G.E. Moore shows practical/moral reasoning is open ended. Hence, true knowledge is a going beyond the self too something, or for Aristotle a "making the mind like the thing," something ecstatic.

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          >So, the problem lies in attempting to set up a standard of certainty that is hallow and unattainable, incoherent even.
          Yes, totally on point. And I think this is the something Renaissance skepticism pointed out, but ended up almost entirely smothered by Descartes's reaction against it. But I don't understand exactly what mean by knowing what a thing really is and intrinsic relations between things, I thought that mainly after Kant this was a standard that was superseded, since it seems to fall back on Aristotelian and that Cartesian standard of knowledge.
          As for Plato, I really appreciate the aporic dialogues, but what do you think of the Sophist, Philebus, Phaedo?

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          Scandal of deduction is only a thing if you treat unraveling definitions as new knowledge. And what a loaded term new knowledge is, new to whom, and who keeps track of this newness?

          • 1 month ago
            Anonymous

            SOD applies equally well to the idea that deterministic computation produces no new information.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      >Only what could be quantified truly exists. Only things taking up space in motion are truly real. Color, tone, pitch, etc. are all "less real," in this view, "secondary properties," created by the mind, whereas extension in space is objectively real.
      I’m confused. How are those things not quantifiable? Who doesn’t think those things are real? No scientist, I guarantee.

  5. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    You’re basically saying William James argument in a stupid way. You can’t “see” causal connection but James argue you can still “experience” it (which he phrases as something like “conjunctive relations are real elements of pure experience”)

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      Yeah, it is like Peirce’s saying that Generalities exist because they influence and affect us and the world. It does not take for granted the truth relation of the idea of the object and the object in the transcendental way classical epistemology does.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        >Yeah, it is like Peirce’s saying that Generalities exist because they influence and affect us and the world. It does not take for granted the truth relation of the idea of the object and the object in the transcendental way classical epistemology does.
        I'd qualify this by saying that Peirce (especially Late Peirce) is basically an evolutionary Platonist with a progressive metaphysics and not merely pulling off some pragmatic, metaphysically-agnostic handwaving.

        Is it possible to derive Peirce's categories the way Kant derived the categories of Aristotle?

        Yes. Atkins's 2018 work on Peirce, first chapter, goes into it with some detail. I might take a screenshot of a couple relevant pages later when I'm free. Right now, I just want to bump the thread. IIRC, Peirce's letters to Lady Welby also explains in some detail how Peirce reverse-engineered Kant's categories and then simplified them.

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          >Atkins' 2018 work on Peirce
          This one?

          • 1 month ago
            Anonymous

            that's the one I was thinking of. you can get it on annas archive. here's a snapshot from chapter 1 (but the whole chapter is worth reading so you can get all the reasons)

  6. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Wait until you learn about Buddhism which is Hume but even more moronic.

  7. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >I can clearly see that the oven is casual for my hand burning
    You notice a correlation but know nothing of what precisely "caused" what, causation is a mental model. The actual mechanism behind the emergent phenomena, as understood by modern physics includes all kinds of wacky concepts including time travel and reverse causation. When you say one thing caused another you're working on an emergent macro scale which has no special significance except it allows these apparent coherent causal relationships between emergent macro level phenomena.
    Modern physics also says the emergent effects are statistically reliable but not absolute, so there is in fact an extremely tiny chance you don't get burned when you touch the stove, the apparent causal relationship can just randomly not work.

  8. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Read the Enquiry concerning Human Understanding. It's not very long.

    Hume was right about everything he said in that work, except perhaps his psychological theory of belief

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      >Kant realized that Hume’s world of pure, unique impressions couldn’t exist. This is because the minimal requirement for experiencing anything is not to be so absorbed in the present that one is lost in it. What Hume had claimed— that when exploring his feeling of selfhood, he always landed “on some particular perception or other” but could never catch himself “at any time without a percepton, and never can observe anything but the perception”— was simply not true.33 Because for Hume to even report this feeling he had to perceive something in addition to the immediate perceptions, namely, the very flow of time that allowed them to be distinct in the first place. And to recognize time passing is necessarily to recognize that you are embedded in the perception.

      >Hence what Kant wrote in his answer to Hamann, ten years in the making. To recollect perfectly eradicates the recollection, just as to perceive perfectly eradicates the perception. For the one who recalls or perceives must recognize him or herself along with the memory or perception for the memory or impression to exist at all. If everything we learn about the world flows directly into us from utterly distinct bits of code, as the rationalists thought, or if everything we learn remains nothing but subjective, unconnected impressions, as Hume believed— it comes down to exactly the same thing. With no self to distinguish itself, no self to bridge two disparate moments in space-time, there is simply no one there to feel irritated at the inadequacy of “dog.” No experience whatsoever is possible.

      >Here is how Kant put it in his Critique of Pure Reason. Whatever we think or perceive can register as a thought or perception only if it causes a change in us, a “modification of the mind.” But these changes would not register at all if we did not connect them across time, “for as contained in one moment no representation can ever be anything other than absolute unity.”34 As contained in one moment. Think of experiencing a flow of events as a bit like watching a film. For something to be happening at all, the viewer makes a connection between each frame of the film, spanning the small differences so as to create the experience of movement. But if there is a completely new viewer for every frame, with no relation at all to the prior or subsequent frame, then all that remains is an absolute unity. But such a unity, which is exactly what Funes and Shereshevsky and Hume claimed they could experience, utterly negates perceiving anything at all, since all perception requires bridging impressions over time. In other words, it requires exactly what a truly perfect memory, a truly perfect perception, or a truly perfect observation absolutely denies: overlooking minor differences enough to be a self, a unity spanning distinct moments in time.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        Saint Augustine gets at this:

        >For people have doubted whether the powers to live, to remember, to understand, to will, to think, to know, and to judge are due to air or to fire or to the brain or
        to the blood or to atoms or to a fifth body (I do not know what it is, but it differs from the four customary elements); or whether the combination or the orderly arrangement of the flesh is capable of producing these effects. Some try to maintain this opinion; others, that opinion. On the other hand, who could doubt that one lives and remembers and understands and wills and thinks and judges? For even if one doubts, one lives; if one doubts, one remembers why one doubts, for one wishes to be certain; if one doubts, one thinks; if one doubts, one knows that one does not know; if one doubts, one judges that one ought not to comment rashly. Whoever then doubts about anything else ought never to doubt about all of these; for if they were not, one would be unable to doubt about anything at all

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          >For even if one doubts, one lives; if one doubts, one remembers why one doubts, for one wishes to be certain; if one doubts, one thinks; if one doubts, one knows that one does not know; if one doubts, one judges that one ought not to comment rashly. Whoever then doubts about anything else ought never to doubt about all of these; for if they were not, one would be unable to doubt about anything at all.
          Wait until you read about Arcesilaus.
          >Socrates sought to call into question our claims to knowledge, particularly about ethical issues. For Socrates, even if the goal of truth seems far off, philosophy can nevertheless undermine our ill-founded arguments, and free us from the more egregious forms of error. Arcesilaus took seriously Socrates’s attempts to call our knowledge claims into question, but he pushed it further. Socrates claimed to know more than his fellow citizens because he at least knew he knew nothing. Arcesilaus went one step further, saying that he didn’t even know that he knew nothing.
          You can always get more skeptical.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        I don't agree with how kant does philosophy. He is uncomfortable that there are no selfs to distinguish themselves, he implicity makes the assumption that this is somehow necessary, then proceeds to invent concepts that fill in these imaginary holes, just like a mathematician who is uncomfortable that negative one doesn't have a square root so he invents imaginary numbers and calls them real things. Kant is no more blind than hume was ignorant of what lies beyond impressions.

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          I generally disagree with Kant's whole project. The radical rejection of ancient and medieval metaphysics, the cutting the mind off from the world, etc. But he is absolutely right here.

          You can say the self is very different from what it appears to be. You can say it is composite. You can say it is much more shallow than it seems to be à la modern eliminitivism. But you can't say you just have discrete perceptions.

          As Sokolowski points out, it's impossible to even talk like this, or to live like it's true. But more problematic is that, if every moment is truly discrete and sui generis, nothing can be said about anything, period. Hume's own attempt to explain assumes some continuity. There is no series of discrete moments without something linking them to make them a series.

          Augustine was getting at the far earlier and unfortunately his star fell with the rejection of the Church and people stopped delving into his more theological works. Unfortunately, his mature masterwork on philosophy of mind is buried in a large tract focused on the Trinity.

          • 1 month ago
            Anonymous

            I am not talking about discrete perceptions, I am talking about his assumption of self needing to observe itself or needing to understand the world around it perfectly. This necessity might as well be a self referential axiom that has no basis in anything.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        I generally disagree with Kant's whole project. The radical rejection of ancient and medieval metaphysics, the cutting the mind off from the world, etc. But he is absolutely right here.

        You can say the self is very different from what it appears to be. You can say it is composite. You can say it is much more shallow than it seems to be à la modern eliminitivism. But you can't say you just have discrete perceptions.

        As Sokolowski points out, it's impossible to even talk like this, or to live like it's true. But more problematic is that, if every moment is truly discrete and sui generis, nothing can be said about anything, period. Hume's own attempt to explain assumes some continuity. There is no series of discrete moments without something linking them to make them a series.

        Augustine was getting at the far earlier and unfortunately his star fell with the rejection of the Church and people stopped delving into his more theological works. Unfortunately, his mature masterwork on philosophy of mind is buried in a large tract focused on the Trinity.

        Different anon, would it be possible that only space and time are enough to give this unity of self and relation of experiences (past, present)? Kant’s categories are kind of a mess and generate some problems. I’m curious to know your opinion taking a phenomenological point of view in consideration, since you referenced Sokolowski.

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          Perhaps. Kant just derives Aristotle's Categories, and as Hegel points out he uses some dogmatic assumptions to do this himself.

          I think Eddington is grasping Kant's best point though, which is that you cannot have truly discrete, sui generis moments of perception and still claim that there are moments (plural). If there was nothing relating them together there wouldn't be moments in some relation, just totally isolated frames.

          From the quotes contained, Kant seems to misunderstand Hume. He said that there was no way to observe/conceptualize the self without the idea, and this is strictly true whether the self exists or not. A mind without ideas is nothing.

          The quote is only in reference to one set of claims made in the Enquiry, not Hume's entire philosophy of mind. The passage isn't meant to be a critique of Hume except inasmuch as it's showing how Kant came to realize that experiences have to be held together by something.

          Also, in the name of Allah, please read Hume rather than wikipedia articles about Hume.

          >No one who disagrees with a philosopher I've read could possibly have actually read them

          • 1 month ago
            Anonymous

            >how Kant came to realize that experiences have to be held together by something.

            jaa and that thing is not in our mind... it is in the things themselves... that is actually the reason why our world is stable and not unstable...

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        From the quotes contained, Kant seems to misunderstand Hume. He said that there was no way to observe/conceptualize the self without the idea, and this is strictly true whether the self exists or not. A mind without ideas is nothing.

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          Also, in the name of Allah, please read Hume rather than wikipedia articles about Hume.

  9. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    kants trascendental idealism and Hume are bullshit to me no matter how you put it... I can Cleary assume that causality is in this world and that things are causes for other things... just by thinking about it with my normal understanding... this whole problem never should have occurred... the whole thing in itself bullshit is cause of this senseless trouble... it is moronic

  10. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Is it possible to derive Peirce's categories the way Kant derived the categories of Aristotle?

  11. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    See the problems with Gravity and Dark matter.

  12. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    I mean, he was basically right. At the quantum layer, what we think of apparent causality, doesn't apply.
    But most of western philosophy is shit imo so. There's that too.
    Taoism and it's offshoots are the only worthwhile philosophy.

  13. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Okay but how did those balls end up in the same place together
    How did you end up in a house in a room with an oven and decide to touch it
    How can you say that things obviously have a causal order when you're only looking at 1 insanely tiny step in what must really be a gargantuan chain of of steps

  14. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >I Mean if a ball hits another ball we can clearly see that the first ball was casual for the second one to move...

    Totally absurd. If an object in a picture in a film reel is followed by another object, you can likewise "clearly see" that the first object caused the second, and you would be absolutely wrong.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      OP here... wow... that is actually an argument man... got to think about that one... but I assume you can debunk it

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        OP here... the movie argument is not very strong as it is a human being that arranges everything in the movie... therefore it is not causal... but if you put that idea on the real world you would have to assume a thing that is responsible for the order of things but that is not just the simple causality of them... that would be absurd to think... because causality is the most clean and simple thing to assume

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          it doesnt matter that its a human or anything else that arranges the sequence. How something gets to be is ultimately unknown and is based on extrapolation itself. its a black box. Our most fundamental knowledge is that moment 2 followed moment 1, rather than moment 1 causing moment 2 to happen. us thinking that moment 1 caused moment 2 is a greater leap in logic than 1 simply preceding 2 which is demonstrable and more certain.

          a film is just an example that demonstrates that a particular first doesnt necissarily cause a particular second, because other things may be in play, you can never truelly quantify the x factors. and unless you somehow can be sure of universal knowledge you can not be truely sure that any particular is the sole or even relivent reason for any other particular.

          of course there is still degrees of likelyhood, so while you can never get to 0 or 100 % certainty, you can approach it by being 99.999999 etc % certain. which can be practically causal, but isnt truly causal because its really based on iterative correlation.
          >of the 9785 times the first ball hits the second ball, the secound ball moves. Therefor I am confident that this will happen the 8786th time

  15. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Why do you think that anything you think exists beyond your brain? Where's the evidence for it, or even the reasoning (considering the reasoning that it doesn't is highly suggested by our development of neuroscience)?

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