Can an idea be eternal?

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  1. profile image0
    AKA Winstonposted 7 years ago

    Which came first, the object or the idea?  Abstract concepts such as love, logic, morality, and justice are ideas, i.e., they depend on a being to create their meaning.  In this sense, abstractions cannot be discovered but can only follow from the ideas of sentient beings, i.e., be created. 

    One would have to conclude, then, that sentient beings preceded all abstractions, that objects must precede concepts, and thus ideas cannot be eternal without an eternal object that preceded them.

    It then follows that only an object god is possible, as an abstract god would require an object god to precede in order to define the abstraction.  So it would seem impossible for god to be both an object and an immaterial being at the same time - the object god would have had to come first.  Therefore, the idea of an immaterial god cannot be eternal.

  2. Philanthropy2012 profile image87
    Philanthropy2012posted 7 years ago

    Well I wonder where on Earth you got this idea from? I might as well re-post my response here and make this a relatively short forum.

    AKA Winston, Not to deliberately humiliate you on someone else's hub but I do believe you are shockingly mistaken in your definition of both existence and logic. You have also committed fallacies of argument.
    "Logic is no more tangible than love" Tangibility has absolutely nothing to do with existence or it's ability to be discovered. Please address this.
    "were each scattered all around earth"
    2 mistakes, 1. something's existence is not predicated on whether it is "scattered or not", constants/universalities are also said to exist and be discovered, and 2. the fact that something exists on "Earth" in particular has no relevance to it's ability to being discovered. Please also address this.
    "You do realize your claim of discovery means that abstractions preceded sentience, don't you"
    I fail to see why you asked me this question considering I specifically and clearly stated precisely that in the comment you replied to.
    You make the fallacy of comparing "love" to "logic". Love is predicated on the existence of something that is capable of it, logic is not. This is because love is not a constant and is variant, dependent on the organism.
    There is only one variant of logic, and that is logic, you may get false logic, but this is not logic, this is fallacy. Logic is the correct way to view how everything works. Gravity, constants and the speed of light in a vacuum all preceded us, and all comprise logic.

    1. profile image0
      AKA Winstonposted 7 years agoin reply to this


      To be clear, the meaning of a word is the precise definition for that word as given by a speaker before making his claim.  Precision of thought and expression is not a democratic process defined by majority votes or debate over who has the best dictionary.  Before one can use a word such as "exist" unambiguously, one must define it unambiguously.  When the terms are key, it is up to the speaker to define how the terms are meant.

      How is it that love, an abstraction, and rock, an object, can both exist in the same manner by the same definition?   That is the quandry that necessitates stricter definitions.

      The distinction is that we can reason that it is possible for the rock to have been around before any sentient being lived for the simple reason that sentience is not a requirement for a rock to exist.  Love cannot be reasoned to exist before the concept was formed - this is the same with any abstract concept.  The conclusion is obvious - only objects can precede the word that describe events (Note, this does not say that events cannot occur simultaneously with objects, just that the naming and descriptions of those events requires sentience.)

      That is not to say the events described by abstractions are false, or that there is no such thing as feelings and emotions.  It is simply a delineation between what may be thought of as statics (actors) versus dynamics (events).  In this sense, logic cannot be demonstrated as a single snapshot - it requires a movie.  A rock only requires a single picture.   

      (Gravity, constants and the speed of light in a vacuum all preceded us)

      These are descriptors, not actors.  For example, gravity is a description, not an object.  Saying a rock falls to the floor describes the action but does not explain the cause.  Again, events occur - but to demonstrate the action requires multiple pictures.  How can you illustrate "gravity" in a single snapshot?  You can't.  It requires a series to show the action.  So how can an event (a dynamic action) be said to exist in the same manner that a static (an object) exists?   This would be like claiming that raindrop is essentially the same as rainstorm - would the audience understand the need to build an ark if the speaker substituted a single object (raindrop) for a dynamic event (rainstorm)?   

      I grant you the event we term gravity was part of reality prior to humans - but the description we term gravity is a purely human invention.   The event preceded humans - the description did not.

  3. Philanthropy2012 profile image87
    Philanthropy2012posted 7 years ago

    Just for the younger readers, what I am saying is:

    What is the difference between something that exists like a cat, and a concept such as Logic.

    Keep in mind of course that there is only one way of Logic, much like there is only one way of Cat.

    This is different from organism specific concepts which AKA Winston mentions which are determined by the organism and the mind that views it, love and justice for example are very subjective.

  4. Philanthropy2012 profile image87
    Philanthropy2012posted 7 years ago

    AKA Winston,
    Oh dear lord, the definition of "definition" by definition is the description that is found in a dictionary or dictionary source (check in a dictionary or dictionary source!).

    What you are talking about is the degradation of all languages into sheer and utter gibberish. If we had no authority and constant in language then we would never have formed a language in the first place. To get rid of ambiguity of what certain sounds mean that leave our mouths is the entire point of defining words.

    I was going to argue how your film analogy is incorrect but it appears that I do not need to. If you concede to "the event preceded humans"  but argue that "the description did not" then you have already forfeited your argument.

    Something does not need to be described to exist, even for a sentient it just needs to be realised. Much like logic is realised. Much like constants and gravity is realised. To realise something, it has to have been there in the first place, it's as simple as that. If it was not there to realise, we would have created it.

    Now for the clincher, in your opening you say abstract concepts need to "be created". Okay, but where there is only one true Logic (one true way in which things work), is it creating those connections that we are doing? Or is it finding them.

    You must concede that these connections already existed before sentient life forms came about.
    And thus you must concede that we find them. Which is to say they were there in the first place. The connection that an object falls to the largest gravity source is law and was there before we were. Otherwise stated as : the logic that an object falls to the largest gravity source is law and was there before we were.

    I would concede to the idea that we create wrong connections and false logic which is as a creation of ours but we do not create logic (actual logic) but actually find it.

    Which brings me back to the idea that God can be proved or disproved with logic, on the basis that we know that it is in fact logic.

    1. profile image0
      AKA Winstonposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      (Oh dear lord, the definition of "definition" by definition is the description that is found in a dictionary or dictionary source (check in a dictionary or dictionary source!). )


      You are suggesting then that there is only one correct dictionary (the one you believe in) and that this particular dictionary has always defined all words exactly the same as they do now, and so any ambiguity must reside within the word itself and not in its definition?

      What a quaint argument. 

      Saying that a contingency of an event preceded sentience does not mean
      that sentient understanding after the fact shows that the after the fact methodlogy of understanding preceded sentience.  How can it?

      (Something does not need to be described to exist)

      Of course not - if it must be described, though, it cannot exist - at least not in the same manner as that which does not have to be described.  I can point to a rock and grunt - I don't have to describe it for the viewer to know I am pointing at a rock.  I cannot point to a lump of logic - logic must be described.

      Here is a clear, precise, and unambiguous definition of exist: physical presence, that which shape and location.

      I can use that definition and the audience will never think I am talking about an activity that requires motion.

      I can imagine the action of the planets movement about the sun - that does not mean that an orbit existed.  Your own definition invalidates the possiblity.  Realization.

      In order to realize, there must be sentience. 

      Only objects can possibly be eternal.

  5. tobey100 profile image60
    tobey100posted 7 years ago

    Well, Who ever came up with the idea of drying out a leaf from the marjuana plant, lighting it and inhaling the smoke came up with an idea that seems to be eternal.  Same with the first guy to point to a cow and say, "See that stuff that calf is sucking out of those things?  I'm gonna get me some too."  Why do men wear pants and women pants and skirts?  Why does the word 'idea' mena what we accept it to mean?  I really don't think there's an answer.

  6. profile image0
    AntonOfTheNorthposted 7 years ago

    This is a question of definition.  If 'idea' is treated as an object in conversation, Winston's point is valid.  It isn't an object the same way a rock is.  It is a process.  Think is a verb. Thought is treated as a noun, but it is not the same quality as a rock.  I can't point to a thought, though I can refer to one, and it can be argued that this non object can have an effect on an object.  (I think to do, then I do)

    the question could then be something like 'Does the action 'think' create or discover the idea?'

    Well, sort of both.  If Winston has an idea that I also come up with independently, but after he did, have I created something new? or have I discovered something that already exists?

    But did that idea exist before we did?  Our mental processes are unique.  How Winston arrives at a conclusion comes from a different chain of experiences and processes.  Yet if we come up with the same idea, is that because it existed before either of us?  Did we both discover the same thing, or create different identical things?  Is there a collective unconscious?

    Until we know more about reality, this question is just like the god/no god one: interesting to ponder, not easy to answer.

    Winston believes that 'only an object god' is possible.  I agree.  'Nothing unreal exists', but the 'who made the causer' question still remains.  The actual existence of said 'god' is something I believe in.  I won't speak for Winston.

    @ Philanthropy

    "the definition of "definition" by definition is the description that is found in a dictionary or dictionary source (check in a dictionary or dictionary source!)."

    Isn't this rather the same thing as theists saying that the bible is true because the bible says it is?  smile

    I think the more we decide what is or is not based on a book, any book, we are limiting the capabilities we have as thinkers.

    So do I challenge dictionary definitions?  Absolutely.  The same way I challenge the bible, the qu'ran, the grand design, origin of species, and etc. etc.  Also the same way I challenge adherents of same.

    Clarity in discussion is important, so understanding what one means to say when they use a word is the only rational way into a debate. What does it matter if I say 'glokenspiel' or 'toaster' as long as I am able to make clear to you what I mean?

    If what I interpret to be love is a collection of actions that you associate with hate, then we'll find that out as we interact, and correct as we go. This is the nature of relationships.

    Otherwise, its just: "you're wrong.  My book says you are".

    All books are fallable.  They are written by fallable beings. 



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