1. Joined
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    18 Jul '10 20:30
    If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out
    it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and
    therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark.
    'Dark' would be a word without meaning.

    -CS Lewis
  2. Standard memberkaroly aczel
    the Devil himself
    Brisbane,QLD
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    18 Jul '10 20:57
    Originally posted by amolv06
    If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out
    it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and
    therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark.
    'Dark' would be a word without meaning.

    -CS Lewis
    People invent things like religon and 'meaning' when no such things exist.
    Having said that sometimes the best you can say in certain situations is"God knows", which means "nobody knows".

    So should we get rid of the word "God", should we get rid of the word "meaning"? No. "God" is one of our most important words. "meaning" can make you invigorated about life and lead to furthur insights.
  3. Joined
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    18 Jul '10 21:52
    Originally posted by amolv06
    If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out
    it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and
    therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark.
    'Dark' would be a word without meaning.

    -CS Lewis
    That doesn't really make sense. Us thinking the universe has no meaning is a starting point. If we knew it had a meaning from the beginning, we would know what that meaning is, so us to find out it doesn't have a meaning would be redundant.

    Likewise, if there was no light in the universe and hence no eyes, both words "light" and "dark" wouldn't even exist. Makes the whole concept of knowing about light and dark meaningless.
  4. Standard memberKellyJay
    Walk your Faith
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    18 Jul '10 23:08
    Originally posted by lausey
    That doesn't really make sense. Us thinking the universe has no meaning is a starting point. If we knew it had a meaning from the beginning, we would know what that meaning is, so us to find out it doesn't have a meaning would be redundant.

    Likewise, if there was no light in the universe and hence no eyes, both words "light" and "dark" wouldn't even exist. Makes the whole concept of knowing about light and dark meaningless.
    Why would we create the meaningless if we would not have words like light and
    dark if there were no light, why would we have words to prove a point that did
    not need proving? Why assign no or some meaning to a universe that didn't have
    any, if we know we would not assign words for light and dark in a universe without
    out light and eyes, so why speak of meaning if there really wasn't any? Knowing
    there is meaning suggests we should grasp it and try to understand it, missing the
    meaning but being aware of it would put "meaning" into the conversation.
    Kelly
  5. Standard memberAgerg
    The 'edit'or
    converging to it
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    19 Jul '10 00:396 edits
    Originally posted by amolv06
    If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out
    it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and
    therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark.
    'Dark' would be a word without meaning.

    -CS Lewis
    Why is it the case we should not find out that the universe has no meaning?

    I think in his analogy he falsely introduces the word "dark" (which for it's definition requires that light be a thing that is existent and absent) when to mirror the structure between the situation he is comparing he should instead use simply "not light".

    If it could be discerned by some person that no creature has eyes then he should also conclude, assuming evolution, that there most likely does not exist the phenomenon which eyes would respond to.
  6. Hmmm . . .
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    19 Jul '10 03:091 edit
    To say “The statement ‘The surreptitious chartreuse sounders secretly’ has no meaning” is itself meaningless—unless the statement ‘the surreptitious chartreuse sounders secretly’ actually has meaning!

    What compelling, unmuddled logic!
  7. Joined
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    19 Jul '10 03:111 edit
    If the universe has no meaning then it is worse than it is meaningless. It is absurd.

    It would be maliciously meaningless - absurd. That is because science and common sense reveal that its mechanical workings are all meaningfully working together.

    If it is objected that they "all" are not working together, I think it cannot be denied a very vast amount of it is apparently working together.

    The digestion of the stomach is not meaningless.
    The absorbtion of light by plants is not meaningless.
    The effect of water on living things does not seem to be meaningless.
    The division of cells does not seem to be meaningless.
    The uniting of sperm and egg does not seem to be meaningless.

    Even the condensing of humidity to fall as rain does not seem to be without meaning.
    The tilt of the earth for seasons seems not to be meaningless.
    Even the gravity holding billions of stars in a aggregated structure, such as a solar system or a galaxy, seems not to be meaningless.

    The part of the huge system seem to be meaningful to the workings of the whole system. Yet if the entire system is meaningless, then this coordination is worst that meaningless. It would be absurd, ridiculous, even monstersously stupid.

    And mankind would be the crowning absudity of the whole malicious bad joke. This of course has been contemplated by philosophers and artists at some point in their lives at least - Schopenhaur, Kafka, Mahler, Procal Harum, Ingmar Bergmen, Samuel Beckett, to suggest a few.
  8. Joined
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    19 Jul '10 03:33
    Originally posted by amolv06
    If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out
    it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and
    therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark.
    'Dark' would be a word without meaning.

    -CS Lewis
    Fail.
  9. Joined
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    19 Jul '10 03:512 edits
    Originally posted by jaywill
    If the universe has no meaning then it is worse than it is meaningless. It is [b]absurd.

    It would be maliciously meaningless - absurd. That is because science and common sense reveal that its mechanical workings are all meaningfully working together.

    If it is objected that they "all" are not working together, I think it cannot be denied a ...[text shortened]... - Schopenhaur, Kafka, Mahler, Procal Harum, Ingmar Bergmen, Samuel Beckett, to suggest a few.[/b]
    If the universe has no meaning then it is worse than it is meaningless. It is absurd.

    I don't follow. If the universe had no meaning, then wouldn't the universe just be 'meaningless' by definition? Also, I do not agree that such a universe itself would be 'absurd'. For instance, this is a distinction Camus wrote about: "I said that the world is absurd, but I was too hasty. This world in itself is not reasonable, that is all that can be said. But what is absurd is the confrontation of this irrational and the wild longing for clarity whose call echoes in the human heart. The absurd depends as much on man as on the world."

    Your show of revolt to call such a world "malicious" and worse than meaningless (even though it would obviously be exactly meaningless by definition -- no better or worse, whatever that would even mean) marks the confrontation of which Camus is speaking.

    The digestion of the stomach is not meaningless.
    The absorbtion of light by plants is not meaningless.


    They are "not meaningless" in what way?
  10. Hmmm . . .
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    19 Jul '10 03:56
    Originally posted by jaywill
    If the universe has no meaning then it is worse than it is meaningless. It is [b]absurd.

    It would be maliciously meaningless - absurd. That is because science and common sense reveal that its mechanical workings are all meaningfully working together.

    If it is objected that they "all" are not working together, I think it cannot be denied a ...[text shortened]... - Schopenhaur, Kafka, Mahler, Procal Harum, Ingmar Bergmen, Samuel Beckett, to suggest a few.[/b]
    Well, one has to ask: “What does one mean by this word ‘meaning’? “ How is it being used in this or that sentence, in this or that context?

    In your post, “meaning” seems pretty much synonymous with “coherence”. The universe coheres, and all the working parts that you allude to necessarily cohere with that general coherence. Otherwise, there would not be cosmos, but chaos—and we would not be here discussing it. Whatever does not cohere with the general coherence of the whole does not survive long.

    But whether or not the brute fact of that coherence signifies—let alone necessarily signifies—something else is a whole other question. And a different use of the word “meaning”.

    Nevertheless, as per my analogical whimsy above, I think Lewis’ argument in that brief quote is surprisingly bad for an intellect of his stature.
  11. Hmmm . . .
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    19 Jul '10 04:131 edit
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    [b]If the universe has no meaning then it is worse than it is meaningless. It is absurd.

    I don't follow. If the universe had no meaning, then wouldn't the universe just be 'meaningless' by definition? Also, I do not agree that such a universe itself would be 'absurd'. For instance, this is a distinction Camus wrote about: [i]"I said that the wo f light by plants is not meaningless.[/b]

    They are "not meaningless" in what way?[/b]
    [/i]And that people tend to try to escape the absurd situation—of wanting the world to disclose “meaning”, when all it discloses are facts and their relationships—by making an unwarranted existential leap into a religion or philosophy that claims to relieve the situation. Or at least to relieve them of having to exercise their own existential freedom in order to to grapple with it.

    Ah, our old friend Camus!
  12. Cape Town
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    19 Jul '10 05:02
    Originally posted by amolv06
    If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out
    it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and
    therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark.
    'Dark' would be a word without meaning.

    -CS Lewis
    We should not confuse a part with the whole. I fully accept that the universe contains at least one sentence that I find meaningful. Therefore 'the universe contains meaning' seems to make some sense.
    But just as we would not say 'the universe is dark' or 'the universe is light', we should not say 'the universe is meaningful' or even 'the universe is meaningless'.
  13. Hmmm . . .
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    19 Jul '10 05:07
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    We should not confuse a part with the whole. I fully accept that the universe contains at least one sentence that I find meaningful. Therefore 'the universe contains meaning' seems to make some sense.
    But just as we would not say 'the universe is dark' or 'the universe is light', we should not say 'the universe is meaningful' or even 'the universe is meaningless'.
    Good point.
  14. Standard memberblack beetle
    Black Beastie
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    19 Jul '10 11:37
    Originally posted by vistesd
    Well, one has to ask: “What does one mean by this word ‘meaning’? “ How is it being used in this or that sentence, in this or that context?

    In your post, “meaning” seems pretty much synonymous with “coherence”. The universe coheres, and all the working parts that you allude to necessarily cohere with that general coherence. Otherwise, there wou ...[text shortened]... I think Lewis’ argument in that brief quote is surprisingly bad for an intellect of his stature.
    edit: "But whether or not the brute fact of that coherence signifies—let alone necessarily signifies—something else is a whole other question."

    And even this further "significance" is empty, my friend vistesd, because our opinions/ knowledge derive solely through our own senses. We have 6 senses, and the sixth is Mind.
    Due to the nature of our very existence, which it is just the nature of our mind, we “understand” everything through:
    1. Shape/ Form
    2. Mental operations regarding the process of differ theories, ideas etc
    3. Evaluation/ mental operations at the cognitive level in order to accept or reject the product of our mental operations
    4. Dualist approach/ mental operations during our process of distinguishing “Good” and “Evil”, “Same” and “Different”, "This" and "That" etc, and
    5. The final product that is caused by means of all these previous so called decision making tools;

    So I am forced to consider everything (that we are considering) as merely a product of the mind, because our sixth is the buffer who simultaneously deciphers every piece of information we are becoming aware of; these pieces of info we are receiving, these strings of thoughts we are developing, they all have to be evaluated according to one’s personal level of understanding. No mind, no nothing. Mind can take countless forms in both macrocosmos and microcosmos, and the nature of the mind is the Void.
    Thus I have heard:
    When your mind stays calm the Universe appears not;
    When you understand, the reality depends on you;
    When you do not understand, you are depending on the reality;
    When the reality depends on you, the unreal becomes real;
    When you are depending on the reality, everything is not real;
    When the reality depends on you, everything is real;

    Be well😵
  15. Joined
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    19 Jul '10 12:36
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    [b]If the universe has no meaning then it is worse than it is meaningless. It is absurd.

    I don't follow. If the universe had no meaning, then wouldn't the universe just be 'meaningless' by definition? Also, I do not agree that such a universe itself would be 'absurd'. For instance, this is a distinction Camus wrote about: [i]"I said that the wo ...[text shortened]... f light by plants is not meaningless.[/b]

    They are "not meaningless" in what way?[/b]
    ========================================
    I don't follow. If the universe had no meaning, then wouldn't the universe just be 'meaningless' by definition? Also, I do not agree that such a universe itself would be 'absurd'. For instance, this is a distinction Camus wrote about: "I said that the world is absurd, but I was too hasty. This world in itself is not reasonable, that is all that can be said. But what is absurd is the confrontation of this irrational and the wild longing for clarity whose call echoes in the human heart. The absurd depends as much on man as on the world."
    ===================================


    You have a point. I probably wouldn't argue over it more than necessary.


    ================================
    The digestion of the stomach is not meaningless.
    The absorbtion of light by plants is not meaningless.

    They are "not meaningless" in what way?
    ==================================


    Do you personally live as though to use your stomach is meaningless ?

    Which characterizes your personal life - that your stomach is meaningless or that it has meaning ?

    I am not speaking of arm chair philosophizing now. How do you live ? If after 48 hours of having nothing to eat, do you shrug your shoulders at the thought of putting something in your stomach ?

    Do you regard the hunger pangs as meaningless in your practical daily life? I would wager that to sustain your human life is a meaning that you daily attach to the function of your stomach. Even sometimes just enjoyment is the meaning you practically attach to your tummy.

    I don't think I have a rigorous philosophical debate for you on the matter. I have not read a lot of Albert Camus.
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