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Choose Your Own Topic / On Immaterialism / Idealism
« on: February 27, 2013, 04:49:35 pm »

Immaterialism: a philosophical theory that material things have no reality except as mental perceptions.

Idealism: A group of philosophies which assert that reality, or reality as we can know it, is fundamentally mental, mentally constructed, or otherwise immaterial.

Sense Data:
i. Sense data are the kind of thing we are directly aware of in perception,
ii. Sense data are dependent on the mind, and
iii. Sense data have the properties that perceptually appear to us.

Sense Data Theory: The theory that there are at least 2 realms of reality, the experienced/sense data & the physical(that which creates/sends sense data).

(George Berkeley)

Some time ago, that guy^ pondered the question "If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?".
Considering the ever popular sense data theory Locke had been famous for defending, Berkeley questioned. "Why must there be a gap between experience and the world?"
He asked "Why must there be physical entities for us to experience the world? Why the need? Is it not as rational for there to simply be experience?"
He was questioned "If there is merely experience, what are we experiencing? The physical is needed because something must be sending the sense data."
I imagine Berkeley smirked and replied
"Why can't that sense data sender be an ultimate mind (AKA God)?"

Apparent Argument for belief in Idealism. (NOT an argument for its validity.)

1) Occam's Razor:
  • Assume the existence of an ultimate mind/God.
  • it is more rational to assume our sense data comes from God(Idealism) rather than from some unnecessary entity( the physical)

One can also apply this to specific subjects.
Eternal soul
The self

These issues become unbelievably more complicated to rationalize when one factors in physical reality. (not to suggest that they can't be rationalized because I believe that they can.)
Why subject one's self to such complication to support the notion that entities, that seem superfluous, exist?

Now let me ask a few questions:

1) What are your thoughts on immaterialism / Idealism?

2) Do you believe it, deny it, or claim ignorance and why?

3) Do you believe immaterialism/Idealism is rational to hold? Why?

4) Consider occam's razor. Why is it necessary that we add the physical world?
    Is it not more rational to leave the physical out and take the idealist view of reality?

Please treat each other with respect.
These questions were raised to stimulate conversation and intellectual thought, NOT to force this subject matter down your throat or call anyone against it irrational/idiotic in any way.
I'm looking forward to hearing your response, thank you for reading.

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