## We Know Just About Nothing Again!

Philosophers and rhetoricians, Welcome!
That's completely different than what you're claiming. Prove this:

In order to be absolutely certain about something, the odds of what they think must be 100%. I can always think of a possibility that works in the same situation. It is possible, but unlikely. Therefore, we must take this possibility into account. It makes the 100% choice, diminish to a 99.999999999% choice. And the other bizarre choice the .0000000001%. Therefore, we cannot be absolutely certain that the 99.99999999999% choice is correct.
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Apotheosis
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Its the same concept.

In order to be absolutely certain about something, the odds of what they think must be 100%

This would be like 100 jelly beans in the jar. 100 of them are red. So I can be absolutely certain that I will pull out a red one.

I can always think of a possibility that works in the same situation. It is possible, but unlikely. Therefore, we must take this possibility into account. It makes the 100% choice, diminish to a 99.999999999% choice. And the other bizarre choice the .0000000001%.

I now have 1000000 jelly beans in the jar. 999999 are red. 1 is green. It would be outrageous if I pulled out a green one wouldn't it!

Therefore, we cannot be absolutely certain that the 99.99999999999% choice is correct.

Since the green jelly bean exists in the jar, I cannot be absolutely certain that I will pull out a red one.

Don't take in account for who pulls it or who decides what happens. Its not the point. The point is the uncertainty. And this works in events. How is it different.
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threewood14
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The point is the uncertainty. And this works in events. How is it different

Ok, with the jellybean scenario, we know that there is a green jellybean in the jar. What your idea of uncertainty was describing is that there may or may not even be a green jellybean in there in the first place! Let me reiterate: The jellybean scenario is pure math. It's obvious that if you have 99 red jellybeans and 1 green jellybean in a jar the probability of one picking the green jellybean from the jar is 1% (Probability = successes ÷ tries ===> 1 ÷ 100 = .01 = 1%). We are dealing with facts in this scenario. The jellybeans all exist, there is no question as to whether or not some of them don't exist. With your idea of uncertainty, you are claiming that we can't know with absolute certainty whether or not a person will pick the green jellybean from the jar because there might be a chance that that jellybean doesn't even exist!!!!! Do you see what I'm trying to say? The point is, you can't use math to prove your theory of uncertainty because you are not dealing with things that are. Anyways, could you try to prove your ideas to me?
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Apotheosis
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Okay I see what you are saying. But you are missing another point. I think I got a better example that would correspond to my idea. I guess if you want existance, it would be determining what is existing. Consider the following.

We have 1 jellybean in a jar. From hearing rumors and people talking, everyones says that they think its a red jellybean. The jellybean could be red, orange, green, blue, fushia, magenta, violet, etc. However, after research, we come to the conclusion that there is a 99.9999999% chance that the jelly bean is red. We, however, do not know for sure. Obviously a .00000001% chance exists that is, lets say, not red. We are unsure what exists in the jar. Red or not red. Why? Because both scenarios are possible no matter how big or small a chance. However the red jellybean is most probable.

So now, we could say that we living on earth is the red jellybean. We use our senses to determine what is probably real and what is probably not. We sense that we are on earth. However, it is possible that our senses could be decieving us. We could be orbiting a black hole in a space ship! And since it is possible, we cannot be absolutely sure that we are on earth. Why? Lets call the earth scenario a red jellybean and the black hole scenario a green jellybean. We are unsure which jellybean exists because it is possible for both that they can exist. However, only one scenario would be real. The red jellybean is more probable. But the green jellybean is still possible. Are you getting this?
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threewood14
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And of course the chances would be for our purposes. The jelly bean IS red or it IS green. Its our chances of being correct.
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threewood14
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We have 1 jellybean in a jar. From hearing rumors and people talking, everyones says that they think its a red jellybean. The jellybean could be red, orange, green, blue, fushia, magenta, violet, etc. However, after research, we come to the conclusion that there is a 99.9999999% chance that the jelly bean is red. We, however, do not know for sure. Obviously a .00000001% chance exists that is, lets say, not red. We are unsure what exists in the jar. Red or not red. Why? Because both scenarios are possible no matter how big or small a chance. However the red jellybean is most probable.

If I understand your analogy correctly, then the red jellybean is ‘reality’, but our senses just give us an interpretation, one that makes us believe it is red. If the jelly bean is green and everyone sees a red one and we are all sure it’s red, that does not mean that we can’t trust our senses, because for example we see colours, which in reality don’t exist of course. Reality knows nothing of colours, only different wavelengths. But we have said that colours exist, because we see them, we’ve given a name to something which only exists in an interpretation of reality, yet in reality itself the jellybean is green and not red (the colours are wavelengths, not colours). I suppose the jellybean analogy is not a very good one, but I’ll just continue to use it anyway...
We can’t be sure what colour the jellybean really is – no – but what we can be sure of is that this perception we see of the jellybean is there. The perception ‘red’, which everyone can see exists, and we can be sure of that.

Threewood, I think we all understand what you're saying,

And since it is possible, we cannot be absolutely sure that we are on earth. Why? Lets call the earth scenario a red jellybean and the black hole scenario a green jellybean. We are unsure which jellybean exists because it is possible for both that they can exist.

namely that we cannot be certain of anything, as your thread suggests.

This is what Descartes said and later Hume (or Russel, I can't remember ) tried to prove Descartes wrong in the same way Apotheosis is now, by saying that basically this world just makes no sense if maybe we are in fact in a spaceship and our cats are in fact pink fluffy monsters (and we just haven't noticed that yet, just like we haven't noticed the black hole we are orbiting).
But Descartes says that there is one thing we can be certain of... that the 'I' exists, because other wise who would be there to even think about such stupid things as spaceships and fully pink cats? Does anything exist that has these perceptions you have now? Are you saying you can't even be sure that these thoughts feelings and perceptions you have now even exist? Or aren’t you sure you exist? But then who isn’t sure he doesn’t exist? Something is doing the thinking....

As Apotheosis said, if everyone can see the cat, then something very catlike is indeed there (something which makes us see fur and claws and ears, it doesn’t matter here in this argument that we don’t know what the molecules that cat is ‘made of’ look like’, because if nothing was there to cause these very similar perceptions, which are of course different for each person, then there would be no reason for them to say they were also seeing a cat.
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Emma_85
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Reality knows nothing of colours, only different wavelengths. But we have said that colours exist, because we see them, we’ve given a name to something which only exists in an interpretation of reality, yet in reality itself the jellybean is green and not red (the colours are wavelengths, not colours). I suppose the jellybean analogy is not a very good one, but I’ll just continue to use it anyway...

You are right of course. But I was using color only to distinguish one jellybean from another. I could have said cherry and lime if I wanted to. Either way, you got the point.

But Descartes says that there is one thing we can be certain of... that the 'I' exists, because other wise who would be there to even think about such stupid things as spaceships and fully pink cats? Does anything exist that has these perceptions you have now? Are you saying you can't even be sure that these thoughts feelings and perceptions you have now even exist? Or aren’t you sure you exist? But then who isn’t sure he doesn’t exist? Something is doing the thinking....

That's a good point. But I've reduced my claim back to only the physical world. We, or 'I', could be here, but not in physical form at all. That's kinda more like a spiritual thing of souls and such, but from my beliefs I think the soul is kinda like a parasite only not harming its host. Its host is a body. The soul needs a body to feel things.

As Apotheosis said, if everyone can see the cat, then something very catlike is indeed there (something which makes us see fur and claws and ears, it doesn’t matter here in this argument that we don’t know what the molecules that cat is ‘made of’ look like’, because if nothing was there to cause these very similar perceptions, which are of course different for each person, then there would be no reason for them to say they were also seeing a cat.

Is anything even there? Or are our minds playing tricks on us? You can't deny the fact it is possible that everyone could have a similar chemical imbalance and thus having similar hallucinations. Its like the jellybean. Its possible for this to happen, but not probable. Only one scenario can exist, however it is possible for both to exist so we cannot draw a conclusion with absolute certainty.
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threewood14
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Eureka! If only one scenario exists then why would we be uncertain about things? Just because something is possible does not mean that the certainties we hold are automatically uncertain. If you ask me, so what if there is another possibility? The fact of the matter is, what is happening is happening. No uncertainty is randomly going to arise.
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Apotheosis
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Eureka! If only one scenario exists then why would we be uncertain about things? Just because something is possible does not mean that the certainties we hold are automatically uncertain. If you ask me, so what if there is another possibility? The fact of the matter is, what is happening is happening. No uncertainty is randomly going to arise.

The fact of the matter is that we do not know which scenario is actually happening though. It is possible for all these scenarios to be happening even though only one is. The thing is, we don't know which one is! Why? Because all these possibilities exist! You can't ignore it. Let's go to a more real situation.

Its a baseball game between the Red Sox and Yankees. Its a big game, however, you lose power during top of the 9th inning and its all tied up at 3. Is it possible for the Red Sox to win? Yes. Is it possible for the Yankees to win? Yes. Now from judging this situation, you have to make a conclusion to who won the game. (And its over by the 9th inning). Ask yourself who won the game. From our conclusions, we say that the Red Sox winning is slightly more probable than the Yankees winning. Lets say 60% and 40%. The percents are not what us actually happening. Its a representation of how probable each scenario is. So can you be absolutely certain that the Red Sox won even though its more probable? No. It is possible that the Yankees won. Even though I'm way against NY , you can't just shrug them off like that.

This kind of thing is faced with many conclusions in life. It is possible that we are living on Mars. However, it is more probable that we are living on Earth. The thing is, you can't tell which one is really happening! The existance of these possibilities makes our absolute certainty become a relative certainty. The possibilities makes scenarios more probable and less probable. (99.9 and .1). But we can't just shrug off a scenrio just because its less probable.
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threewood14
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Ah... I forgot you believe in souls...

I'm afraid philosophical debates end when religion starts to intrude apon them...
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Emma_85
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We'll ignore the 'I' then and bring it up maybe in a later time.
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threewood14
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If a result is, say, <1/(10^10^10^10), can't we just safely exclude it from our "interpretations of points of energy at a certain point in time-space by a conscious mind". The bearing it has on our "interpretations" is too small to be counted in... a result of 1/10^6 is small enough for these parts of space-time, isn't it? Therefore we can discount these occurrences.

Back to apples and pears; Mary is correct for that point of space-time about that period of space-time.

So does space-time exist? It is part of our imagined universe, but we believe and have proved and accepted it as being compatible with all interpretations of people and with the interpreted universes themselves.

The space station is perceived to be nearly all metal superifcially, the Earth is supposed to have a much higher oxygen content. If we measure all these and find that we are all living on Earth, this is what we accept. It therefore becomes part of everyone's interpretation is accepted by all. So it's reality to everyone.

But then of course there must be something to interpret. This must then be an absolute reality.

This is only a source of ideas, I'm not trying to taking sides.

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Didn't Einstein prove that force equals mass times acceleration divided by the square root of one subtract the square of the velocity divided by the square of the speed of light?
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Michaelyus
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threewood14 wrote:This kind of thing is faced with many conclusions in life. It is possible that we are living on Mars. However, it is more probable that we are living on Earth. The thing is, you can't tell which one is really happening! The existance of these possibilities makes our absolute certainty become a relative certainty. The possibilities makes scenarios more probable and less probable. (99.9 and .1). But we can't just shrug off a scenrio just because its less probable.

I don't understand why this matters so much. OK, we don't have absolute certainty. So what?

Think of it this way: How sure are you that your parents really are your parents? Are you 99% sure? 99.9% sure? 99.9999% sure? You can't be absolutely certain of this..... but of what practical consequence is this small tug of uncertainty? Will you look at them differently because of the .0001% chance that they are not really your parents? Do you consider it foolish to discount that one-ten-thousandth percent chance? Will you constantly examine their words and behavior, looking for clues to remove all doubt?

Why should we be so careful to distinguish between nearly-absolute and truly-absolute certainty? Let's imagine that somehow, magically, you acquired absolute certainty about something.... anything. What would change?

When a tailor measures, he measures in inches (or centimeters) not in nanometers, right? Is he too blunt?
Democritus
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I agree. It is kind of pointless. But I do find it interesting if you are aware of it.
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threewood14
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threewood14
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